February 22, 2004

Insight

Thanks to those who expressed concern and support after my last entry. As always it's great to know there are people out there who understand.

I'm feeling somewhat better. The pain is gone most of the time and I've managed to accomplish a few small things I've been putting off. Like cleaning the mold out of my shower stall.
Yay.
And even writing, a little.

Besides this entry, I put down some ideas about the same-sex marriage controversy. I will probably try to submit it someplace when it's ready.
I also have to pick up some magazines and get familiar with style and requirements.

And I haven't forgotten about getting help. Right now I think the local psychologist will be my best bet to start with but one way or another I AM going to get help. I think I'm still working with a lot of wrong assumptions stemming from childhood, and need someone to help me sort out what's valid and what's not.
Particularly when it comes to how I allow people to treat me, yes, beginning with my mother.
Children don't know any better than to trust their parents.. they are all that they have. Parents ARE the truth, are gods in a way, to their very young children.
So when a child is continually criticized by word and attitude, she tends to believe that the criticism is warranted - even when the parent in question verbally claims to love and appreciate her and is behaving like that only to "teach" right and wrong.
Even very young children can sense contradictions.

For some reason it took me way too long to grow up, in the sense of separating my own opinion from that of my mother; in fact, I don't think I HAVE fully outgrown it.

Boyfriends, well, I wasn't popular and didn't have many, or as many as I wanted. I didn't have the indifferent attitude that seemed so attractive at the time. Or something. Whatever, it was clearly my fault.

And when, on the morning after our wedding, my husband started to criticize me for being disorganized, I should have stood up to him and made it clear that I wouldn't be berated for perfectly natural nervousness.
What I did do was shoulder the blame for my own inadequacies, which set the pattern for many years to come. I couldn't understand why, no matter how hard I tried, nothing was good enough, until much much later (two kids later) when I realized that that was the POINT.
The game was rigged.

I still have trouble grasping that people use these tactics in order to intimidate those they are afraid of losing control over, be they children, lovers, friends, or probably any personal relationship. I can grasp how wonderfully it works; what I don't get is how people like this live with themselves, knowing they run their world by fear instead of love.

Plenty of insight there, but still it's not enough. I've probably come as far as I can on my own which isn't far enough by a long shot. Not when there are still people professing themselves as friends who think that this is a perfectly appropriate way of responding to me.

I may not have always made the best choices in men over the years but that's an effect, not a cause of my problems. I've wanted closeness and affection but accepted much less, especially with regard to respect. Now I'm concerned that my sons will think that women are inferior creatures because the woman in their midst has been regarded as such.
I hope it's not already too late for that.



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