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Old 05-11-2015, 01:02 AM
  # 41 (permalink)  
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I know, Strat.
We've discussed this many times.

I really hope you can find a way to leave the past behind.
Everyone deserves a little happiness

D
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Old 05-11-2015, 05:45 AM
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So do I have my hands around their throats by discussing it now or what?

Oh, and thanks. I'm not sure if I believe that though. I don't

What have we discussed many times, my upbringing?
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Old 05-11-2015, 02:06 PM
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It's from a book called The Shack.
You can't move on if you have your hands around someones throat.

I had a lot of family issues. I wanted them to be who I needed them to be. I wanted them to apologise to me and to admit they'd wronged me.

I realised a few years back that would never happen and I've been the better for it.

I've forgiven and moved on. That doesn't mean they were right, or that I accept what they did or said, or that I hold them close so they can do it again.

I just let go of all that stuff, because I was endlessly reliving the pain the anger and the resentment.

The only person I was really hurting was myself.

D
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:54 PM
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Sometimes life gives us crosses to bear. They are heavy and hurt us as we drag them around. (One of my 'Crosses' was a family friend and teacher who abused me and the people who 'chose' not to believe me or take it seriously at the time). One day I heard someone say that they had decided to stop punishing themselves with their own anger, and it made me realise. That's what I had been doing for almost 30 years. I was angry, and resentful, and allowing that 'Man' to affect all my other relationships. I have no contact with him, so have no way of knowing whether he is happy; sad; dead; whatever (and I don't want to know). The one thing that I did know was that all that anger I was carrying around. It sure as eggs are eggs wasn't affecting his life like it was affecting mine. So yeah, I was 'justified' in feeling angry. But it still meant that I was ultimately continuing to punish myself for something that someone else did wrong.

I couldn't find it in my heart to forgive him myself, so I told my higher power that I was passing this one over to them to deal with as they see fit. I parked up that heavy, painful old cross and moved on from it. It has been life changing.

And, yes. Miracles can happen. But a lot of it is an inside job, and has a lot to do with 'willingness' to change your mind about things. Are you willing? (And that's not me saying you 'deserve' to be miserable if you aren't. It's just the way it is. Like if you want clean dishes, you have to be willing to get your hands wet. If you don't wash them up, it doesn't mean I think you 'deserve' dirty dishes, just that's what you're likely to end up with.)

I really hope that you can find it in yourself to start asking for help (counsellors don't turn up at your door without you asking for one) and start seeing that people on here do actually want happiness and sobriety for you, and suggestions are made in a spirit of friendship, not to make you feel worse or to say ' well it's your fault because you haven't done XYZ'.

All that was 'miraculous' in my own recovery would have been pretty much invisible to the outsider. It has happened within me. A subtle shift, but it's meant that my outlook (on my future and on people) is mostly hopeful. It's an inside job I tell ya xx
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:15 PM
  # 45 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Stratman1 View Post
Not really man. I think alcohol has been the main motivation behind all and any positive experiences in my life, I'm sure that it has.

And only half the negative ones. You are right in saying it hasn't solved those issues but. Who's throats have I got my hands around!?
Stratman, you are really selling yourself short by attributing all positive experiences in your life to alcohol. This might sound strange, but as an exercise just imagine yourself. In your mind's eye, visualize you. Strip away all the negative experiences from yourself. Then strip away all the positive experiences. Now look at yourself. What do you want? What do you want to bring to yourself, for yourself now. Today?

What I am experiencing right now is a stage of recognizing what balls and chains have been attached to my ankles so I can let it all go. I have been feeling like a vulnerable kid walking around on the streets lately. I have spent so much time in my last year of sobriety recognizing all the wrongs, hates, dislikes, nevers, unfairs and feeling the pain, anger, sadness that I honestly have not been able to provide an answer to the simple question, "What do you want?"

Ok, so you have been manipulated and you feel really angry. What do you want?

"My life is shite". What do you want?

Stratman is a narcissist magnet. What do you want?

And then go for it. How are you going to get what you want and need? Give yourself the chance to define your life. Do not allow all those balls and chains, including alcohol, to define your life any longer. You are free and able to do it at any time. What an amazing opportunity! Start looking for a guide. A life coach. My guide is my trusted therapist. Many others here have their AA sponsor. What do you want? Truly.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:20 AM
  # 46 (permalink)  
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Stress

Thanks for the responses . Well actually, it's not anything in the past that is holding me back. I am getting over some things. It's whats ahead of me that's the problem. That's always the problem. No matter what I try to do, they keep on sending me backwards.

What do I want today? Nothing. Today i have to ring around 3 court offices and a solicitors office ( who treats me as subhuman even though i have been nothing but jovial towards her) and compose emails to the same effect. I'm totally stressed out by this thing

And I have to reply to some comments on a legal discussion board about my case where everyone is saying 'this is outrageous, why is this happening' etc. And I don't know the answer to that but this thing has been going around in circles since last November for me.

And I don't want to be doing that, much like anybody else. I just wish the process would just infold as it should, or in a manner that most people don't find 'outrageous' and 'unfair'. I had good faith last year that it would do and once again my good faith has been abused.

I'm not even allowing myself to feel those things but it is wearing me down. Disenfranchised demoralized and dehumanized are some words. I wish that the process would unfold or have unfolded in a manner that wasn't extremely unfair (it's just another example of this)

And the reason I wish it would unfold in a fair manner, like other things I sought help with, is that I wouldn't have that hugely stressful thing hanging over me. That I could sit down and actually do the things you mentioned, as I was instructed to years ago. If that makes sense?
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:20 AM
  # 47 (permalink)  
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Dia duit Strat,

This book helped me greatly to deal with an invalidating mother many years ago. It allowed me to recognise the "game" that was going on, realise that it wasn't even conscious from the other person most of the time and gave me the "keys" to deal with the game and not get sucked into the other person's drama. Or at least when I did (get sucked in) I was able to recognise it for what it was after and see how I could have dealt with it in a more productive manner.

Nasty People by Jay Carter
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Nasty-People...r+nasty+people

Then there's the classic "The games people play by Eric Berne"
Games People Play: The Psychology of Human Relationships: Amazon.co.uk: Eric Berne: 9780141040271: Books

One thing I'm learning lately, but admttedley have not 100% mastered is the following: There is no objective reality. Reality is subjective. If it's raining, the rain in itself is arbituary, it's neither good nor bad, it just is. However, some people will go around saying "terrible day", "awful weather", whereas others may say "fantastic bit of rain for the crops", "great weather for kayaking". "plants need water". Who is right or wrong? They're just different realities. What's the point? Everyone carries their personal philosophies and realities around with them. You could say their 'personal frame'. It's important for me that I stay grounded in my own frame. I had an argument with an ex a while ago.....and really it wasn't an argument. She got all annoyed and critical because I left a towel on her sofa instead of putting it back in the bathroom. She was getting all angry and speaking to me like as if she was my mother....that was her frame. In place of keeping my own frame (positive and fun) I allowed myself to be sucked into her frame. I entered her reality instead of staying grounded in my own. She was acting like a bratty little kid and that's how serious I should have taken her.

It would have ended up that no big deal was made out of it. Maybe she was testing me unconciously as they do.

I have to decide what my frame is.....positive? fun? water off a duck's back? ball buster? ....and stay grounded in my own frame.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:38 AM
  # 48 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Stratman1 View Post
How do you interact with people whom you consider a trigger?
I tell them to buzz off before they get their nose flattened!

(could be joking)
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:45 PM
  # 49 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by TheCrimsonKing View Post
I have to decide what my frame is.....positive? fun? water off a duck's back? ball buster? ....and stay grounded in my own frame.

That's a fair point. It's hard when there is always someone or some entity trying to take everything from you though? For example, the roof over my head. That went on for over 3 years

It doesn't bode well for a peaceful existence. And yes, that is a trigger but I'm talking about the local authorities now. The conversation had drifted from personal relationships somewhat
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:41 PM
  # 50 (permalink)  
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Smile

I am new to this site.......I have 30 days sober today.....this is the longest I've made it this far in ages. I'm with dee74.... I like the term non essential......as in not key. That's a good way for me to look at people who cause disruptions in my life. I'm learning stuff from this site too and I finally figured out why I was drinking so many bottles of diet soda for months before I put my foot down on beer and quit quit. I no longer drink soda either. I got tired of it. I forget what my point is.......probably paws.....my final point is......this site rocks. There is so much good information.....I'm sorry that I didn't know about it earlier because I can see that it's really gonna help me.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:34 PM
  # 51 (permalink)  
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You'll handle it

Originally Posted by Stratman1 View Post
That's a fair point. It's hard when there is always someone or some entity trying to take everything from you though? For example, the roof over my head. That went on for over 3 years

It doesn't bode well for a peaceful existence. And yes, that is a trigger but I'm talking about the local authorities now. The conversation had drifted from personal relationships somewhat
"I'll handle it" is the answer to all the what if questions that you can attach to all your worries. What if they take the roof from my head? I'll handle it. What if I'm sent down? I'll handle it. What if I lose my job? I'll handle it. What if I lose this relationship? I'll handle it. What if she is pregnant? I'll handle it. What if I have cancer? I'll handle it.

By the way, how did you get a broad pregnant that lives in another country? You tried to be a friend to her? Therein lies the error....it's better to be a man who puts his needs first. Be selfish. Ironically it attracts women more and unburdens them....

The solicitor women....stop being jovial to her. You'll probably get more respect when you start caring less.
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Old 05-12-2015, 05:47 PM
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Welcome to SR Debbie. Feel free to start your own thread too

D
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Old 05-14-2015, 03:18 AM
  # 53 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by TheCrimsonKing View Post
"I'll handle it" is the answer to all the what if questions that you can attach to all your worries. What if they take the roof from my head? I'll handle it. What if I'm sent down? I'll handle it. What if I lose my job? I'll handle it. What if I lose this relationship? I'll handle it. What if she is pregnant? I'll handle it. What if I have cancer? I'll handle it.

By the way, how did you get a broad pregnant that lives in another country? You tried to be a friend to her? Therein lies the error....it's better to be a man who puts his needs first. Be selfish. Ironically it attracts women more and unburdens them....
Well you are not wrong. Unfortunately for me handling it meant to drink. Otherwise I would just be sitting on the side of the road wondering why these things keep happening to me.

It raises questions for me that are a compete tangent from anything related to my recovery (from clinical depression initially) i.e. why they would persist in taking the roof from over my head when I was minding my own business and trying to work through some issues.

They won anyway. I was forced out of the area I'm from because there was no work and I clearly couldn't claim that rent supplement and live in peace like everyone else I know, I guess that's handling it somewhat to just give up.

So I lost the roof over my head. Get sent down for what, smoking weed? Not that I agree with it but I was aware it's a possibility and doesn't matter now. Lost my job. Lost all relationships. etc

You seem to be advocating a kind of badass attitude to life I think. Fair enough, but I would need to drink for that act. You are the blood king after all, but that's not me man.


To answer your question: she needed a place to stay, we went on a few dates and she decided to get pregnant 'to teach me a lesson', whatever that means. It wasn't a lesson in how to be happy unfortunately.

She's married and lives in a another country for one thing. She still sends me pictures of her and her family online and I don't know what to think or say (to myself even).

Cant say I handled that well at the time. I was almost recovered from a mental breakdown (and the breakdown of my own long term relationship, which was supposed to be my future) and it brought a whole lot of new drama and stress into my life.

We couldn't get anywhere on the same page anyway. She didn't want to move back here, or didn't want me moving there. Constant telephone and email arguments 24/7, I was the pragmatic one. Her husband on my case also.

I was planning on going back to college to get my life back together and make a future for myself but it never happened. That was me trying to put my needs first for once. But, I drank for the stress of it anyway. (my bad)
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Old 05-15-2015, 03:50 PM
  # 54 (permalink)  
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Thumbs up

Originally Posted by Verte View Post
Stratman, you are really selling yourself short by attributing all positive experiences in your life to alcohol. This might sound strange, but as an exercise just imagine yourself. In your mind's eye, visualize you. Strip away all the negative experiences from yourself. Then strip away all the positive experiences. Now look at yourself. What do you want? What do you want to bring to yourself, for yourself now. Today?

What I am experiencing right now is a stage of recognizing what balls and chains have been attached to my ankles so I can let it all go. I have been feeling like a vulnerable kid walking around on the streets lately. I have spent so much time in my last year of sobriety recognizing all the wrongs, hates, dislikes, nevers, unfairs and feeling the pain, anger, sadness that I honestly have not been able to provide an answer to the simple question, "What do you want?"

Ok, so you have been manipulated and you feel really angry. What do you want?

"My life is shite". What do you want?

Stratman is a narcissist magnet. What do you want?

And then go for it. How are you going to get what you want and need? Give yourself the chance to define your life. Do not allow all those balls and chains, including alcohol, to define your life any longer. You are free and able to do it at any time. What an amazing opportunity! Start looking for a guide. A life coach. My guide is my trusted therapist. Many others here have their AA sponsor. What do you want? Truly.

Thanks Verte for this particularly useful post. I'm still here thinking about it. Well I used to know exactly what I wanted in life from a relatively young age.

It's nothing gradiose whatsoever. Although it has changed a lot over the years. Now I have no idea even. I could refer back to the Maslow chart but I won't.


Not a whole lot really. The type of things that a lot of people take for granted. The type of things that most people have/expect/demand in life, and probably a lot less even.

I'm so confused about everything I'm not even sure what they are anymore. That is the problem I guess, that sense of normality I have always strived for has long been lost.

I didn't meant to attribute every positive experience in my life to alcohol. What I meant was that it was the backdrop to most experiences good and bad for a very long time.
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Old 05-18-2015, 10:47 AM
  # 55 (permalink)  
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I thought about your question

Love, peace, and harmony?

¿Or am I'm being silly now

Are they just lofty ideals?
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:49 AM
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Or faith, hope, and happiness.

I know even less about those 3

Can somebody help me out here
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:57 AM
  # 57 (permalink)  
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I think Verte wants you to have some more concrete ideas of what you want out of life, although I could be wrong. Do you see a partner? What kind of job do you see yourself doing? Do you want kids or no kids? Where do you want to live? Sometimes by being able to see what we want, we can start taking action to make those things occur.
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Old 05-19-2015, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Stratman1 View Post
Or faith, hope, and happiness.

I know even less about those 3

Can somebody help me out here
From what I can see, you've come to a place in your life where you don't care anymore, where you've lost sight of what life can be for you. It's as though you believe that if you stay perfectly still, everything will get better. The only thing you seem to care about (and I'm not sure that this is caring at all), is your conflicts with the "people who've triggered you." It takes balls to care, since taking the risk to care means that we now have something to lose. Is there nothing else in life that you're afraid of losing besides your apparently self-destructive fight?

Instead, you rage against your family, the mother of your child, the legal system and the community at large. As Dee puts it (and I'm paraphrasing here), you're so busy strangling all these monsters -- keeping your hands around their throats -- that you've neglected your own growth, your own need for love, both giving and receiving, and your own sense of purpose in life beyond exacting revenge upon those who've victimized you.

You've stubbornly placed your life on hold, waiting for a final judgment, for justice to be served, ignoring the fact that in your passively aggressive battle (which is now also against yourself), you handed down a life sentence for yourself without much life at all. Like a child threatening to hold his breath unless and until he gets what he wants.

You gotta start somewhere, man. Life continues to fly by, with seemingly increasing acceleration, even when we're not doing a whole lot. What will life be for you if you're in the same position as you are now, five, ten or even just one year from now?

Among the most heartbreaking moments in my life -- and I've learned to also be grateful that I've had them -- is when working with people approaching, in or past middle age who can then only weep that they threw away their lives in favor of nurturing some resentment, had grown to be too fearful, and ultimately bitter, to even consider that things such as peace of mind, love and meaning in life were at all possible for them, or who had indulged their anxiety, depression or obsessions so willfully that they only recently discovered that all they were doing was keeping the living of their own lives at a "safe" (tolerable) distance.

I got no joy or pleasure from writing my comments. I have no stake in your misery. There are many other things I could have attended to with my time. As many have commented, only you can make a difference in your own life. But as long as you continue to use those who've victimized you as the point of reference in your life, and continue to convince yourself about what you do not know and what you cannot do, then I don't get where you're going with all this.
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Old 05-19-2015, 12:45 PM
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I talked to you before a few times and am not gonna repeat those things, but want to tell you about something I've recently gotten into, also because it follows up on some of the suggestions on this thread. I have a friend that I thought I knew quite well -- it turns out it was far from the truth. We are traveling and spending a lot of time together now, and he shared with me many of his "secrets" and things from his past. He had very similar childhood experiences to those that you describe with your mother, and then the classic pattern of attracting other people into his life that were similarly abusive and manipulative, and treated him badly. He married two of those when he was very young and had a kid with the second wife. She apparently abused their child in a quite similar way that my friend experienced with his mother, but the kid grew up with her because she had a new husband so that he could have a "family". The mother really tried to "program" the kid against his father, and my friend suffered from this greatly at times, but grew into accepting the situation he could not change. The son is now an adult, 24 year old, and unfortunately they never developed much of a relationship due to the mother's manipulations.

My friend was a very lonely and depressive child and a haunted youth, looking for "compensation" for his lost childhood everywhere, but initially finding only more of the same. Living in isolation, not doing much with his life, angry, anxious, sad all the time. So the great turning point in his life was when he decided that either he will most likely live his whole life in misery and isolation, or will do something to turn it over drastically. So what he did was going back to school at 30, and while he did not plan it that way originally, he ended in an MD-PhD program, and he eventually decided to become a psychiatrist. The school was a very challenging few years for him since he had to pay child care and manage living in NYC, but pulled through it by working whatever jobs he could get in parallel. He completed his residency when he was in his early 40's. Also participated in years of psychotherapy to help him deal with his old issues more effectively. He's now 53 and has a great career and a meaningful, fulfilling life. I never knew him as the sad, desperate person he apparently was in his youth, just as the remarkable, successful human being he now is... so learning all this stuff was a surprise even for me, being typically quite good at figuring people out. I asked him to tell me in simple words, what made that great change in his life and perspective when he was younger. What you you think?

Finding purpose. Getting into things (the school was a big one) that he felt fulfilling for their own sake, that gave his days meaning, no matter what challenges he had to endure and recover from. He now lives his life by this code: never lets himself cling to the past in thought and feelings long. Always tries to look ahead and find newer purpose and inspiration, and it helps him cope even when he periodically gets haunted by the past and by mood issues. It works. Yes he has a history of broken relationships and mostly lack of connection with his son, but he is mostly a happy man with a lot to be grateful for.

I guess it must be easy for you to see why I am sharing this. You are an intelligent, creative person with deep feelings, Strat, who could have a lot to enjoy in life, and offer back to the world... but would need to somehow snap out of this stagnation and circles. I believe that the tone of all your challenges and past hurts would also change drastically if you found inspiring things to live for in the everyday, something for yourself, something that gives you joy, something a little selfish, with the primary purpose of making you fulfilled, and not letting other people in the way. I am quite certain that all your problems would suddenly weigh much less and would be easier to cope with, both emotionally and practically. Could probably find much more positive and suitable relationships also if you had a "base" of purpose and inspiration in all affairs.

You see all this talk here about creating and living a meaningful life -- it's true, my friend! But you need to make it happen, because unfortunately no one else can do it for you.
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Old 05-19-2015, 01:10 PM
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Note to Dee: There was a woman on the bus this morning, sitting across from me, and reading The Shack. At one point, she removed her eyeglasses in order to wipe away her tears. She struggled for a bit, and then slid the book back into her bag.

For me, that was a ringing endorsement for the book, maybe even the impetus for my posting on this thread today.
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