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Archive for the ‘separation’ Category

So…I have just read Adreienne’s post about letting go…and helps a little. She explores the confusion of what it means to let go, let God, to let go with love. But she also says a few other things I feel like responding to – I hope she doesn’t mind:)

Wasn’t I expected to solve my own and everyone else’s problems, have all the answers, and support the behavior patterns, no matter how destructive?  How could I keep my family together?

Yes I have felt like this  – the responsible one. So responsible in fact I have a history of exhausting myself and getting lost in that exhaustion. My care of self diminished. My love for others sees me so consumed loving them there is not much left for me. They say you should get back what you give, but when that doesn’t happen you know you are in a destructive place and something needs to be done. The serenity prayer helped me to come to terms with the need to have to courage to accept the things I could change, recognise those I could not and the wisdom to know the difference. I can not change the behaviour of others – I need only look at myself. So all that giving had to be turned back to me. I needed to solve my problems, find my answers, examine and adjust my behaviour patterns and if the family dymanics altered because of that then maybe that is the way it is meant to be.

…The answer lies not in letting go of people but in letting go of my outworn, painful thinking patterns.  I can replace them with honesty, openness and willingness to change into a more positive person.”

I let go of the belief that things could get better, than one day I would be heard, that one day I might even be asked, without judgement or argument, what it I that I wanted; that if and when I had the courage to say what I wanted I was actually going to be heard and respected. I had to realise that I was consumed by my thinking, my fears, my doubts, the distrust – and not co-existing with faith, openness, honesty, and love. When everything you think, say or do starts to be based on how the other might be thinking or feeling, you have given over too much of yourself – you live for them, not yourself. These are painful thinking patterns. They need to stop.

If we love someone and have made a conscious decision to keep that person in our lives it seems anti productive to “let go” of them.  Truly we don’t let go of love for them and most times not the person.  We come to understand that loving is more than what we understood love to be.  Loving is an action.  What we let go of is our limited understanding of what love is.  Love is not control.  Love is not fixing.  Have you ever been fixed? or controlled?  Do your emotions tell you this is a good thing?  This control is the theme of adolescence.  We know looking at the power struggle between parents and children that it doesn’t feel good on either end.  We let go of our children by allowing them to live their lives and love them more for it.  What we want that is most important is not most important to someone with an addiction. Their goal is different.  Their goal is to eliminate the pain either physically, mentally or emotionally, usually easiest things first. We all function that way.

What we want is most important. This is not most important to a person suffering and addiction problem.  – this goes both for the addict  and the one who loves them. The one who loves them must decide what is most important – for them. Loving ourselves is taking control for ourselves. This is letting go, with love. It is not easy – it creates a need for change – big change. It creates the need to look inside self and ask the question what do I want, what is good for me? It takes  courage to make a conscious decision to put self first when you tend naturally to want to help and love others – when you are raised to consider the thoughts and feelings of others before your own. You have to find the courage to relearn the meaning of the word selfish. If you do not put what is most important for you first you end up so ill that you are of now help to anyone. You need to reset your boundaries and start again. This takes stepping back, retreating. I means saying enuff. Leave me be. Let me rethink and refocus; I will leave loved ones to God, I have the courage to accept what I cannot change.

Letting go has made me look at my boundaries. Letting go gives me the space, courage and selfrespect to examine my boundaries and shore them up. It isn’t easy but one day at a time I am once again finding my lost self and strengthening those boundaries.

Honesty, openeness, trust, mutual respect. If I give these core values to others – I expect them back. I accept not everyone can do that – but I will find peaceful coexistence with those who can.

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I sometimes wonder why – but I know why – it takes so much out of me to stand firm and say ‘I will not tolerate this’, and move on. On numerous occassions in the last 12 months – perhaps more if I was to get really tough, there have been times when maybe I should have put my foot down and had the hissy fit. Maybe I could learn something from my feisty eldest daughter – I don’t think she handles issues well sometimes but i have to admire her for fighting back and not submitting, caving in, giving up, giving way.

I had something, I had a dream, I had hope, I grasped true pure happiness, if only for a brief moment.

I loved the man of my  life in the last two years deeply. I would like to say it was unconditionally but I think that is the province of the children. I wanted to be able to do it unconditionally – but a little hurt grew and there was another hurt, and then another. I found myself once again buried by feelings of powerlessness, of being unheard, of not being free to be me or the person I can be. I wasn’t being nurtured – I was doing the nurturing . And the lesson I have not yet learned it seems is to nurture myself first.

I have learned something though – a lot. He is a good man, a wonderful person. He made me laugh. He showed me love. He was passionate. He is feeling remorse for deeds of the pass – suffering from them even. He could be firm and kind, even tolerant, just like me. But he suffered the problems of drinking and all that goes with it. Alcoholism – that insidious sneaky revolting affliction that is affecting so many people, so many lives, so many good things in the world. He has a real battle on his hands. I did what I could to help but I am drained.  Al Anon teaches that alcoholism is a family disease – they are right. It affects all of us, screws with our minds and lives. In order to get well we need to look after ourselves one day at a time. This is what I will do.

I have also learned that to stop drinking is not enough to deal with the issues of alcoholism – there is a whole lot more very painful work ahead for a recovering alcoholic. Not having a drink is just the first baby step – not the resolution. Letting go of someone going through such a struggle so you can stay well yourself  is damn hard – you have to be firm, even cold. You have to be consistent. You are not giving up on them but that’s what they think you are doing – they are selfish when you feel guilty and selfish yourself for saying I need to look after me.

I keep telling myself – if I am not well I am no good to anyone. I still have one child at home I am responsible for. I have a job and career I love. I have parents who need some of my time and attention. I have a maturing adult daughter who still needs my emotional support and encouragement. I have to be well. Hell I cannot even be a friend to my ex partner who is suffering from that insidious condition if I cannot be strong and firm.

God speed my love – give yourself up to your higher power – you will find a way, as I will.

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Hmmm…12 months have passed so I guess I should check up on how I am doing. I have had my moments recently so its probably a good time to get real about a check up. The signs are good, very good in fact. (more…)

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Ok…so I have moved on…am getting better – now what? Like what exactly are my goals? What do I now want to achieve? I have spent the better part of the last 6 months playing and having fun but essentially I am goal driven and not a floater. Floating has been fun but I think it is time to spend less time floating and more time working on the longer term goals!

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Ok..I fess – I am in awe of Craig Harper his style, his manner, his writing, his whole site….and now he has thrown down a challenge I cannot ignore – the Get your shot together challenge’. See…(assuming you took took that link!) no airy fairy nice as pie language from this motivator – he is funny, brutally honest and expects the exact same from his readers. Well, In the last months if you have been following on with me you will know I have made major life decisions, and there are moments when I wonder if I have made the right choice. It’s time for me to move on, having learned from these experiences so it is time to stop dwelling on what happened, get my shit together and move on! (more…)

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When I was a child I was not allowed to express my anger at what I perceived to be injustice or unfairness. If I did, I was accused of being ungrateful. I had to be ‘good’ and it was somehow my fault if I was bad and I was never able to day something or even think something that would upset mum. ‘you should not think like that’, ‘don’t hurt other peoples feelings’. Well that has led to a whole range of keeping thoughts and feelings to myself till in a fit of deep depression and rage they all come spilling out. If i spoke my mind, hurt someone or got caught doing something wring, especially lying i would even have a full on physical response – the hot flush.

So…I am on my way to mending this and I made what for me was a big step some time ago. (I wrote this at the time but just discovered it in my drafts and not yet published – oops!)  My husband is a chronic liar. I have always dismissed it as machoism, bullshit, tall stories, but essentially it is not being honest. It has always guiled me but since I learned to repress my anger I could never let him know I thought he was talking crap, that I didn’t like it, or comment on what it said about his lack of integrity. I am for some reason proud of my integrity and the fact that I am honest and do not lie. So…there has been this constant silent war going on between the two of us – my integrity and tell no lies approach to life vs his say what you think other people want to hear to make you look good approach. Hmmm..a real conflict there. In this silent war, I get depressed because I do not express my anger. I don’t know how to as I was taught it was a bad emotion, an inappropriate one and one that hurts those who love you. What a dilemma!

In a conversation between my mother and myself, my husband butted in (usual) and declared we as a couple did not do love bites (hickeys). It was a lie. An out and out lie to make us look good in the eyes of my mum. My response – for the first time in I don’t know how long was automatic – ‘Don’t lie!’. There – I had challenged him, confronted him over a pissy little lie – but it was the first step. I had the courage to say my peace, to point out his lack of honesty instead of swallowing it so it can eat me up inside. Further to that I said it in front of my mum who had belittled him so much when we were younger that I would never challenge him in front of her to save him that embarassment and me the admission that perhaps mum was right about how not good (enough) he was. (read my first post).

So…I have made a first step – albeit a small one. the next question a counsellor would ask is how did that feel? Liberating! A big YES! fist in the air ‘I did it’ kind of response. Anyone would think I had just won the 100m freestyle for women! After being so clammed up for so many years, it was so nice to have the courage to say to him do not lie.

After that of course I had to let the guilt pass through – I expected he was feeling embarrassed, angry at me for pointing out his lie in front of mum, etc etc. But he is 47 and if he cannot reflect honestly on how he (we) behaved as a young lover at this age well….what hope is there for my almost 17 year old daughter! She is honest, truthful, and never punished for telling us things we do not like to hear. I am realistic about how she is behaving – as I say to her I don’t have to like it – but I do want her to be truthful. I always thank her for being honest and sharing with me – and she feels safe enough to come and ask me pretty much anything as a result. No judgement – just truth. She knows I don’t like to see her hickies and I have asked her to be discreet. Enuff said. No need to pretend you do not (did not) do them as a young person yourself.

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A Chameleon is a changeable, fickle, or inconstant person. That’ my ex. After the tirade of abuse I got on Sunday, and again on Tuesday after I went researching the impact of hie threat to go bankrupt to hurt me, he came back on Thursday eating humble pie! On Tuesday after I questioned him he claimed to have done his research on the bankrupcty idea but the look on his face when I said to him that they would take his car made it very clear he had not done his research at all. In fact in that conversation it was ok for the trustee to take his car but not ok for him to sell it himself and downgrade so he could in fact help us out of this financial mess. It was frustrating. I told him to go see the accountant himself. Two nights later he rocked up eating humble pie! I have since been wondering what his real motivation was.

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