Friday, February 29, 2008

Something else is happening

I'm beginning to notice beautiful cars.
I have 0 knowledge on the subject and yet...the sudden fascination
It's gotten so bad/good? (I'm confused) that I'll stop and gawk.
I'll stop and gawk, walk away, only to walk back and stare some more.
I've started to lose track of a sentence or conversation because of the site of car!!!!
This is all VERY, EXTREMELY, atypical.
I will humor myself though and get a book about cars so I at least have an idea what I'm looking at
In the meantime my friends have promised to send me in for a DNA test to ascertain that I am me.
And then have me admitted.
*chuckle*

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Of realizations

Why do we assume we know how to love healthily? I assumed I knew how to, now I KNOW I don't.

If we think about it, we experienced love for the first time at the hands of our parents during those monumental years of our childhood which taught us what we know about love as adults. If we don't consciously evaluate what those lessons were and how it is we love as adults, we are basically unconsciously recreating the dynamics of our childhood relationship with our parents in our adult relationships. It takes a simple look back at past and present friendships and spousal relationships to prove this.
This is all hanky dorry if your parents and family are like the cast from 7'th heaven, but this is rarely the case and most of our relationships with our parents were, and for most of us, still are quite dysfunctional. I've found that this dysfunction translates into unhealthy loving of self and others. It is not that one does love, it is that one loves in a manner that is limiting.

Can you correctly answer the question "How does one love healthily?"

Of revelations

The impossible just takes a little longer. (Anthony Robbins)

I like that thought and endorse it completely.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Re-parenting myself

I am reconditioning
Re-framing
Revising
Questioning and re-affirming or newly affirming
I am growing.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Something is happening

An imperceptible shift
or maybe not

I'm challenging my belief system
Realizing that power is not a bad thing

In doing that, I'm coming into my power
owning it
reveling in it

I'm redefining me
or rather "undefining" me
so the best me is infinite

I'm morphing
into something wonderful

And I like what is happening

Monday, February 04, 2008

Emotional abuse: understanding it is the key to healing

I'm a firm believer in asking the "what was that relationship meant to teach me and did I learn the lesson?" question, after a breakup. I have however realized that there is period after a breakup when one is not ready for the answer to that question.

I usually come out of relationships emotionally drained, spiritually tired and enraged as well....and in no state for any form of true healing. But I also know that, that period is every bit as important as the healing. This is the time when one REALLY SHOULD NOT enter into another relationship....a mistake I've made, because then the new relationship just manifests the same issues of the old one.....I get this now. I'd heard it and understood the words...but now I GET IT. Especially because it holds so true for me that I've had my "issues" glaring at me even in my "this is just for fun" flings. Very perturbing.

I've found some great websites that address the verbal/emotional abuse issue, that has been my issue, and most of my girlfriends as well. Check them out, if only to ensure that your are not an abuser or involved with one....I didn't know I was experiencing abuse and if someone had told me I was, I would have told them to go ¤%&% themselves. There is something unattractive about admitting to being abused, I feel like I'm doing something I shouldn't be doing. And I also have my mothers stern voice in my head going "do not air your dirty laundry in public"....but I also believe that this "belief" enables abuse. I've been grateful for the information I've come across online and I'm hoping that my posts will help someone out there as well.

This site gives an all round description of what emotional abuse is and gives examples. This is my personal favorite because it features letters from abusers and victims with the therapists comments to the letters. I felt like I had been in therapy after reading most of the letters. This site deals with how to immediately react in a verbally abusive situation. Lastly, this site is full of all sorts of resources covering issues on how to move on.

Happy healing.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Emotional abuse: one sign that he might be an abuser

What does he say about other women? Past girlfriends, his mother, sisters and other women in general. Is it all negative? If it is then chances are you’ll be the next one on the list of negative women.

I met a guy who, after chatting for a while, told me how interesting I was compared to most of the women he meets. He told me that most of the women he met were stupid, uninteresting and had nothing going for them....and basically bored him to death….but that he found me interesting and fun to talk to.

He actually sounded like he was complimenting me….but I also felt insulted. I remember being shocked at how convinced he was that most women are so trivial and unintelligent and I said as much to him….but he just continued to draw attention to the fact that he thought I was different.

This is the kind of guy you want to be wary of. I’m not saying that what he said is a sure fire sign that he is abusive, but it could be. In any case I became very attentive to my reaction to him and to what he did after that….suffice it to say, we no longer chat! Unfortunately he managed to send me this "joke" (see image below) that's supposed to be funny to women with a good sense of humor. Lets just say I'm not one of "those" women, but by saying that, I also seem uptight and icapable of taking a joke.......thats the catch 22 of emotional abuse.....coz then you get labelled as "over sensitive" and "feminist" or "over reactive" If you have a partner telling you derogatory things about you in the name fo "good humor" and "joking" watch out!


Saturday, February 02, 2008

Emotional abuse: my take on it

Recognizing emotional abuse is perhaps the hardest thing to do if you are involved with an abusive partner. Most individuals who tend to be involved with abusers have never had a healthy relationship and so for them, abusive behavior is "normal behavior".

Another thing that makes it hard to identify emotionally abusive behavior is the fact that most people do hurtful things to their partners in healthy relationships in occasional heated, stressful moments...nobody is perfect.....the only difference is that abusive people consistently do the hurtful things and consciously create situations in which it seems plausible for them to be abusive.

Also most abusive partners gradually become more abusive with time. They are usually extremely charming and gallant in the honeymoon stage of the relationship but then they gradually begin to exhibit abusive behavior. This can be construed as the normal progression of the relationship....which it could be.....you know...the "no arguments in the lovey dovey stage" theory...but if the behavior is abusive it progressively gets worse with the risk of the abused partner being de-sensitized, due to the gradual increments in abusive incidents.

It's been very hard for me to come to terms with the fact that both my ex's were emotionally abusive.....it seems too easy to label them and come off as the victim. I'm still mostly blaming myself and feeling guilty about leaving them....

Even so, I don't regret leaving. Thinking back, I didn't know at the time that I was leaving them because they were abusive...I left because I was miserable. I left them after trying all sorts of things to make things work...romantic dinners, being more accommodating than I usually am, gifts, love notes...etc..... I remember telling them that I couldn't give anymore...I was tired...literally. I felt exhausted and lifeless. And they made me even more tired with their relentless questions about why I was leaving....my answers were just not good enough (classic abuser symptom....what you are saying is not right....in other words you should say something else that sounds alot like what they are saying)

I've always believed that if I'm unhappy in a relationship then the first step is to examine my role in creating the kind of relationship I want.....so I would change to please my partner in the hope that they would reciprocate.....but this kind of approach doesn't work with abusive partners....I know that now. Actually I was playing right into their hands by treating them like kings....while they did nothing in return...the perfect scenario for an abusive partner...this is their payout and motivation for being abusive.

Even after all the criticism I got from both of them, they wanted me back....which left me wondering why they would want a partner they thought was "fat", "stupid", "always annoyed"....etc I had assumed they would be happy to get rid of me so easily.....I was wrong. A year after my breakup with my first ex.....he was still writing to me and bugging my ass! My second ex still feels the need to write to me and tell me about his current gal....poor gal.

There are numerous ways a partner can be emotionally abusive and it can take months for an abused partner to figure out what's wrong.....It took me years....and I'm figuring out most of the stuff now because I've been reading about it and have thus been able to label the behavior. I'm actually getting flashbacks of situations that have cringing...I'm wondering how on earth I let anyone treat me "like that".

So far I've read "Why does he do that" by Lundy Bancroft and I've just ordered "The verbally abusive relationship: how to recognize it and how to respond" by Patrica Evans. Both books come highly recommended by professionals in the field and normal readers.

I really like the Lundy book. It's gone a long way in clarifying the psychology of abusive behavior. I can recognize an abusive partner from a mile away now.....

I believe people are in your life to show you something about yourself....my ex's showed me that I have to deal with my childhood issues that have me short billing myself. They were only voicing what I constantly tell myself....my inner tape. I'm now changing that tape and I'm learning the lesson fast.... because I definitely don't want another relationship with that kind of man. Its too tiring, depressing and aggravating.....and I have a feeling that I've been pretty lucky that those are my only grievances.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Emotional abuse: redefining your relationships

I've been trawling the web for resources dealing with emotional abuse and finding that there's sooooo much good advice out there....gotta love the www.

This site talks about what needs a healthy relationship meets (as opposed to an abusive one). Like:

  • The need for good will from the others.
  • The need for emotional support.
  • The need to be heard by the other and to be responded to with respect and acceptance
  • The need to have your own view, even if others have a different view.
  • The need to have your feelings and experience acknowledged as real.
  • The need to receive a sincere apology for any jokes or actions you find offensive.
  • The need for clear, honest and informative answers to questions about what affects you.
  • The need to for freedom from accusation, interrogation and blame.
  • The need to live free from criticism and judgment.
  • The need to have your work and your interests respected.
  • The need for encouragement.
  • The need for freedom from emotional and physical threat.
  • The need for freedom from from angry outburst and rage.
  • The need for freedom from labels which devalue you.
  • The need to be respectfully asked rather than ordered.
  • The need to have your final decisions accepted.
Think about it. Are your needs being met?