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By | May 8, 2012 57 Comments

Being, Accepting and Letting Go

 

After much contemplation, I decided I’d like to continue along the theme of last week’s post since the sense of ”˜thoughts becoming things’ seems to be becoming even more important to me at the moment. And from the energetic conversation threads from last week it appears to be quite an emotive subject for people here as well!

The picture I’ve chosen this week is the classic “Hag or Beautiful Young Woman” illustration that shows there can be two very different sides to the same situation, depending on our perception. I often use it to remind myself, when I’m having a “Hag” of a day, to change my perspective and seek out the “Beautiful Young Woman—¦. She’s always there somewhere”¦ 😉

I’d like to start off by saying that I do not purport to have all the answers — far from it in actual fact. It occurs to me that the old saying “the older you get the less you know” actually holds a great deal of truth”¦  because these days, even though it stands to reason that I have more knowledge and experience than ever before; it’s equally true to say that I have even more questions in my quest to really know the answers. Still, I guess you could say that’s what keeps us curious to grow and learn eh? Even though, it must be said, there are times when I manage to drive even myself mad with my sometimes-obsessive drive to understand!

Positive Thinking

So I’d like to explain a little about my pathway — and why this quest is so important to me. The very first self-help I ever picked up was Norman Vincent Peale’s “The Power Of Positive Thinking” — first published back in 1952, decades before the concept of positive thinking was in our regular vocabulary, and a lifetime before the emergence of mainstream New Age! I can have been no more than 19 years old when I picked it up for the first time, and I remember being somewhat sceptical about the messages contained in it. I remember feeling pretty annoyed at times — angry even — when it occured to me that if what the author was saying was in any way true, then it implied that I was to blame for my personal circumstances. At that time, both parents were already dead, and my little sister and I had recently been evicted from our guardian’s home. So life was pretty grim.

“And this idiot here is trying to say it’s all been my fault? Who on earth does he think he is? He has no idea whatsoever about me or what’s happened to me!” I would fume, slamming the book shut and stomping off to find a coffee or cigarette — my two regular crutches in those days. The fury and indignance passed, however, once I began to get a glimpse of the real message. It suddenly dawned on me that this book and its ideas were offering me a new way of approaching things. A new way that gave me the promise that I really could change my life for the better. A glimmer of hope in what for me had become a dark and dreary existence full of hopelessness and pain.

That’s where it all began, all those years ago. Since then I’ve devoured hundreds of books and cassettes (yes, way before the time of CDs or downloads!) and attended a myriad of workshops. I’ve also trained in various therapies including Louise L Hay, NLP, Coaching, Reiki, Hypnosis, Breathwork and Firewalking. And so far as I can see, the underlying message is basically the same — that the more we become aware of and flex our thoughts, feelings and behaviour, the more we can determine the quality of our life. Also, the more we can honestly assess what kind of experiences are showing up in our life, the more we can identify where our thoughts and beliefs are sitting, so we can then check whether or not we’re on the right track.

Opportunity Instead Of Blame

I am NOT saying that we deliberately invited sociopathic individuals in to our lives. I am NOT saying that it’s our ”˜fault’. That we must have been thinking ”˜wrong’ thoughts, or giving praise to the ”˜wrong deity’ or following the ”˜wrong’ leadership. Far from it. What I AM saying is that from my own experiences, having recognised — truly recognised — what had been happening to me, I have found ways to move through the experience and find a deeper sense of peace and joy as a result. It’s not about blame”¦ it’s about opportunity. Grabbing the chance to create something different.

And from where I am right now, I’ve realised that there are far more levels to all of this than I could possibly have comprehended at the time. I know in my heart and soul that I have lived and breathed coaching and motivation for more years than I care to consider — and that the techniques I learned and fine-tuned along the way have helped me to create a fulfilling life. I also know that I’ve been lucky enough to make a positive difference in the lives of many hundreds of people.

I’m also holding my hand up right now to admit “I didn’t fully understand it all then”¦ and I still don’t now” – and still I know I did some great work. But I DO acknowledge that I am ”˜getting it’ more and more as time passes — particularly since the relationship with my ex.

For example, last week I wrote about ”˜loving myself the way I am’ — and at the same time not expressing frustrations. My reason for doing that makes perfect sense. If thoughts become things, then let’s change ”˜bad’ things in to good — then all that can ever happen is good. Right?

Wrong. The trick I believe I missed was to accept whatever emotions or frustrations that were happening at the time. Thinking about them and accepting them was never going to make them any stronger or pose any threat! Far from it. By acknowledging my natural ”˜humanness’ and just allowing myself to ”˜be’ then I can accept every single aspect — everything — without criticism or blame. And I can then just let it go. Let the angry, worried, frightened (whatever the ”˜bad’ stuff happened to be) emotions wash through and past me — while I waved them “Bon Voyage”.

No Regrets

People often ask me whether I think I actively invited a sociopathic personality in to my life. Whether on some level I ”˜deserved’ the cruel treatment I received — from my ex as well as from the people in my past. My honest response is this. It doesn’t matter to me where the pain comes from. Who delivers it. Why they’re here. Or what I did to ”˜invite’ or ”˜allow’ it to happen to me. Rather than dwell too much on the bad situations or people that turn up, or try to label them ”˜sociopathic’ ”˜abuser’ ”˜narcissist’ or any other name, I choose instead to focus on what I can now do about my circumstances. Just like accepting my humanness, I will acknowledge and accept that what happened was wrong and hurtful”¦ and then I’ll do my very best to let it go. And that process may well take some time. Good. I can take all the time I like, because it’s important to honour and accept what happened and how I felt, so that I can move through and past it freely and with joy. While doing that, I also reflect back and do my very best to find the ”˜gift’ in the experience — so that I can be certain to recognise and deal with it should a similar person or situation appear again.

But it’s taken me a long time to reach this level of understanding. It’s been a harrowing journey at many times. And, as I said right at the beginning”¦ I’m not saying I have all the answers. Heck, it may well turn out that I don’t have any answers at all — I may be totally wrong in what I’m thinking and believing at the moment! But….

You know what, though? When I look outside at my life that’s surrounding me right now, and compare it to what it’s been”¦. Even running a mental check right back through the years to my childhood”¦. I can honestly say that I feel happier, more settled, and more content than I can ever remember before. And I know, I absolutely know in my heart of hearts that this is just the beginning.

As Louise Hay says “Our thoughts create our reality, and a thought can be changed in a moment”. Every day is a new day, and right now it’s the most fulfilling adventure I’ve ever experienced!

Love and blessings to all — even more than you’ve imagined before 🙂

PS — if anyone fancies experiencing a giggle about the typically good old-fashioned British humour that I grew up with, here’s a link to Morecombe and Wise singing about “Positive Thinking” from their 1976 Christmas special”¦ it always makes me smile http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKN7aWTUrIU


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alivetoday

Perfectly written article for me…thank you…

I have a few index cards that I read every morning. One of them says:
I have patience with myself and others. I accept myself where I am today. I surround myself with people who accept my humaness as I accept theirs. I am a friend to myself.

#2) I am open and aware of new information that provides me with “life-giving” experiences. I think these things through
before acting on them.

Thank you again for such a compassionate article.

Ox Drover

Mel, your article above totally and completely says what I hav e”preached” here on LF for quite some time. My response is going to be short though I’d like to write more I am using my right hand to “hunt and peck” type. My parrot just got my finger between his beak (he got pithed at me for some unknown reason) and broke my middle finger which is swollen up double size and can[‘t be touched to the key board or bent at all. LOL ROTFLAMO now I have a cast on one foot and the hand on that same side is useless!

spoon

Good one. Thanks

I see it you’ve reached smart. You don’t become smart till you realize that there is more you’ll never know then what you can know. Before that we just act smart. The perception, the illusion is everything.

When I saw this with the understood that I’m still growing and can continue to grow the rest of my life. A lot of pressure just lifted off my shoulders.

Another one “Everybody can do what they want but so can I.” If I want to be a friend then I treat the other person like a friend. If he doesn’t treat me as a friend I just move on. no foul, no blame.

Plus getting rid of limiting beliefs.

You’ve probably read James Allen’s “As a Man Thinketh” another good book along these lines.

“The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz
The First Agreement – Be Impeccable with Your Word
The Second Agreement – Don’t Take Anything Personally
The Third Agreement – Don’t Make Assumptions
The Fourth Agreement – Always Do Your Best

Don Miguel Ruiz also wrote “The five Agreements” like part of it but disagree with parts.

Thanks was wondering where I was going to work this in.

Nlp to me is just a tool not an end in it’s self.

My 2 Cents

spoon

This part I liked.

Quote off of Amazon:
“The Fifth Agreement” asks us to be skeptical and use discernment when listening others, and to understand that everyone has his or her own perspective and agenda reflected in their words. It is up to us to discern the truth behind the words, but always to be respectful of another’s right to his or her views, even if we don’t share them. Each of us is the artist of our own life, the director of our own play, and we can make it an adventure or a drama – heaven or hell, it’s up to us.

Ox Drover

Mel, I cannot remember where I read it (CRS) but I read that research shows that people with PTSD have trouble seeing those “double” pictures like you used at the top. I had always liked those pictures and even saw a painter who did them out in LA in the days that I lived there. AWESOME pictures. My grandfather also had a copy of that “vanity’ picture in his office, the one where the woman is sitting at her mirror, and if you look at it you can also see the drawing is of a skull.

Funny thing, I now have GREAT difficulty seeing both pictures in most of them. I am familiar with the beauty/hag picture you posted, but I can ONLY see the Hag now. I have noticed this with other of this type of picture that I now have difficulty seeing both pictures. I called my son D over to look at it, I thought he might be able to pointout “where” the beauty was and I could seeit and danged if he couldn’t see the beauty eaither. It is frustrating him as well…he has a file on his computer of the double pictures and he is trying to fin dit now. He is as frustrated as I am. LOL excuse the typing.

Ana

Oxy,
I’m just the opposite. I can ONLY see the beauty! LOL Maybe if I go cross eyed I’ll be able to see it. I’m gonna keep trying, I’ll let you know what works.

Sorry to hear about your finger, ouch!

alivetoday

Ox, I can only see the Hag too!! LOL!..let us know if you find out how to find the beauty….that is so funny, strange!!

G1S

I am sorry. This is not an attack, but I just can’t buy this.

We had an article this week about a 10-year-old boy who ran in terror down a street only to be returned to his stepfather to be beaten to death with a rolling pin (70 blows) with his mouth stuffed and taped. Why? Accroding to his stepfather, the kid fell behind with his homework.

We had an article here about 150 Mennonite women and children, including a 3-year-old girl, being savagely raped after being drugged by a gang of men from their faith. This went on for years.

A mother and her daughter are dead in Tennessee with two young girls still missing. The husband/father gets to sit and wait. We do not know what the two missing girls witnessed. We don’t know what any of these four went through.

What “opportunity” did these people have?

I agree that there is much that we can do to change our perspectives and to grow. I also agree that we can grow spiritually from our experiences. What I do not agree with, though, is my thoughts created my experiences.

I want the demons and stinkin’ thinkin’ out of my head. I have devoted my life to improving myself through many different means. I have refused to let “them” destroy me.

I have read most of these books that you mentioned. I know about Lousie Hay. I try to see the positive, but it isn’t always there.

I certainly can see the self-defeatism in “I can’t do this,” but thinking is not a fairy godmother granting wishes or making the atrocities things go away.

Not everybody has the option to ignore certain things in their lives.

This isn’t to get into a debate, but by way of illustration, the Bible says that people will do horrible things to each other, up to and including murder. The opportunity, I guess, is the Bible says a person can put their faith in God and look to eternal life.

The Bible acknowledges “long suffering.” That’s for the people whose circumstances never change or get worse. That doesn’t make those circumstances right, but at least they get acknowledged for what they are.

What the Bible doesn’t say, though, is that people who go through “long suffering” are in that position because their thoughts got them there or that they are there for “opportunities,” other than to strengthen their faith.

The Bible says that people can do monstrous things to each other and that God sees it all. Meanwhile, some of us will suffer and may even pay with our lives.

Why I prefer the Bible to this kind of teaching is that the Bible holds everyone accountable for his or actions.

To me, this type of thinking always strikes me as, “If your life sucks, it’s because of how you think. If you don’t have all the material things one could want or a life filled with love, friends, and happiness, you’ve done something wrong. Your thinking is off.” Life isn’t that simple.

I have never come across anything, in this type of thinking, that says, “People do rotten, lousy things to others because people are very capable of doing rotten, lousy things.” There’s not just a page missing from this kind of thinking, but whole chapters.

You mentioned, Mel, that you look at your circumstances now. The sad reality is that there are many people for whom their circumstances never improve and sometimes, even get much worse.

For something like this to have validity for me, it needs to work in every situation and apply to everyone. Since it obviously doesn’t and can’t, I feel strongly it re-victimizes victims.

Even worse, it trivializes and invalidates the very real pain that others go through. It’s real easy to tell others, “This is all you have to do” when you yourself have it good and are sitting in a safe and comfortable place. Try walking in the chronically downtrodden’s shoes for a long time with no sign of getting out of it and tell somebody that “This is all you have to do.”

This is magical thinking.

If it is all that great and all that powerful, why haven’t its devotees changed the world into a beautiful and perfect place? That is what people are supposed to think, right? Beautiful and wonderful things? If this type of thinking is so powerful, where are the results?

None of this is to say that this thinking doesn’t have a place or “some” validity. It’s incomplete, to me, and it always strikes me as promoting itself as complete and “the solution.”

I just look at the world. I hear, feel, and see the suffering, and I ask, “Where are the results?” Can I see beauty in life? Certainly, even in the worst of circumstances, but this kind of thinking is not a cure all or panacea.

For me, the thinking is lacking/incomplete. There has to be something else or something more. My spirituality is about raising all of humanity. This thinking strikes me as being out for myself.

Please, Mel, don’t take this in any way as an attack or challenge on you or your beliefs. It isn’t. I’ve heard this argument before, and this is where I landed in the debate.

It is simply my opinion.

Ox Drover

it helps to unfocus your eyes when you look at the pictures, but I can’t get this one either. And it is not like I haven’t done it before. My son didn’t find his file of 2-photos. Does anyone know what they are called? there is a name for them but I forget what it is.

the sisterhood

Mel, I just love your thought process. I love the idea of feeling through the emotions. Letting them go through us and then saying goodbye to them. Lord knows that I made myself sick trying to deny the painful emotions. Now I get that if I acknowledge the pain of the emotions, I am better able to heal.

I’m not sure if it was as much as my thinking that brought the abusers in my life as it was the emotional need I had. I so desperately wanted to be loved. And because I didn’t know how to love myself, I turned to the ones who I thought would fill that void. Not all of those people were abusers, but the ones who I counted on the most like my parents and my ex turned out to be the worst abusers of my love. The trauma of them not loving me is what caused me to sink into a deeper hole of unworthyness.

Yet, there was still a deep resource of strength within me that allowed me to recognize that I deserved better and that I wanted better. And eventually that strength provided me with the courage to face the truth and get help.

I am forever grateful for that divine gift of inner strength to finally be honest with myself.

Much love to you, Mel!!

spoon

This may help see the beauty in the hag. The bottom of the nose of the hag is the jaw line of the beauty. Follow it down then up the nose. The hump in the nose is the cheek of the beauty. Past the hump were it indents is the beauty’s eye. You can see Eye lashes. The hags eye is the beauty’s ear. The hags mouth is the beauty’s necklace. To see the beauty focus on the indention of the nose. The beauty is looking away.

Ox Drover

Thank you spoon, I see her. I remember now. I have had trouble “seeing” the 2 pictures in this kind of drawing since the plane crash, and I read somewhere (can’t remember where) that people with PTSD do have trouble with this kind of picture. Thanks I am not sure I could have ever figured out or remembered either (this is one I knew in the past) Frustrating! I appreciate your help you described it well.

spoon

the sisterhood

“I’m not sure if it was as much as my thinking that brought the abusers in my life as it was the emotional need I had.”

Try seeing it this way. My thinking, created the emotional need I had that made me vulnerable to the lies of the abuser. You wanted to believe him. It may be that you needed to believe. The pain of believing that we are not loved or unlovable is a very powerful motivator.

What I’ve learned is that what we didn’t get as a child cannot be gotten from others but must come from ourselves. A friend of mine said that her parents didn’t love her which she believed made her unlovable. This belief about herself locked her into a no win situation. She was looking to everyone else to make her feel loved. To make her better. But it would only last for a moment. Then she was back to, I’m unlovable. And everything she did made the problem worse. Her self fulfilling prophecy. But the problem wasn’t that her parents didn’t love her for that was a problem of the past. It was that she believed she was unlovable, now. The parents not loving her is very painful and next to impossible for a child to understand, but was not her fault. Even if her parents had a change of heart now and started treating her with love. It wouldn’t change a thing. She now believed with the evidence of failed relationships.

It was the inability of the parents that created this problem. They did not treat her with love. Which is the event(s). Her coming to understand that she was unlovable created her experience. Her reality.

The parents though had the same problem, their parents, the grandparents of my friend had been terrible parents too. So where does this stop? Since what happened, happened we can not change the events of the past. This leaves us with is, changing the meaning, our understanding of the event(s.) By changing meaning of the events, we change the experience. Thereby it’s effects. In her situation she came to see that it was not the little girl that was unlovable but that her parents didn’t have a clue. And she could now see it was possible for her to be loved. But first she too had to learn what she didn’t learn as a child. How to love herself.

The rest. You didn’t feel loved so as most will do looked to others to fill. It’s what we do. Have a need, we fill it, as best we can. It’s this need that must be dealt with. In this case as you said love yourself first.

We can only start from where we are. That means we must acknowledging the emotion that are there. Doesn’t mean that what is there is what we want. If we feel unlovable it is real and it is painful but it is not true.

My 2 Cents

spoon

Ox Drover

Your welcome. I see them both at the same time. Like they are superimposed.

Ox Drover

Spoon, your post to the sisterhood above is a GREAT post. Thank you for your contributions!

darwinsmom

Actually I’ve seen a version of the picture where you can detect a third image – that of a scott, where the monteau is the scott’s moustache, and his face is turned to the right. But since this pic is coloured in, it’s impossible for me to see the scott’s face in the combination of the white lace and part face.

G1S,

I understand your upsetness and revolt about Mel’s message. And it doesn’t apply to all victims, because many victims do not survive! They are dead or in a coma. But Mel’s message is the workable road for survivors. It doesn’t and cannot happen overnight. There are phases where we are in denial (when we remain with the spaths); there is a phase where we are in a mental victim stage (when we realize the truth, face the unfairness of it), but there also must come a phase where we change our victim-perspective to “I’ve gained something from this.” And while the last may sound selfish, it’s actually the denial and victim stage that are often the most egocentrical.

G1S

Hi, Darwinsmom,

I am not revolted by the message. I understand that is it was given with good intentions.

I just feel that it doesn’t take into account free will. It is too heavily slanted to “everything that happens in my life is because I thought it so.”

My concern is for those who are just beginning their journey to recovery and how a message like that might impact them.

I don’t think people remain with Ps exclusively because of denial.

Think of Maslow’s heirarchy of needs. The first two levels are about survival. Sometimes, there are no alternatives. Children would be an example.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow%27s_hierarchy_of_needs

I agree very much with, “…there also must come a phase where we change our victim-perspective to ‘I’ve gained something from this.’”

If conditions exist that a person can reach that place and take things into consideration in this manner, that’s all well and good.

My position is that many people never have that luxury and I feel it is very wrong to imply that they are in those positions because they’ve called these conditions into their lives. To me, at least, it implies that nobody else has responsibility for what happens to a person.

darwinsmom

g1s,

I didn’t say you were revolted… but that you revolt (from revolution) against the message 🙂

I think Mel explicitly mentioned it’s not about “what you invited”, but what to work towards once something has happened.

Quoting Mel’s article
“I am NOT saying that we deliberately invited sociopathic individuals in to our lives. I am NOT saying that it’s our ’fault’. That we must have been thinking ’wrong’ thoughts, or giving praise to the ’wrong deity’ or following the ’wrong’ leadership. Far from it. What I AM saying is that from my own experiences, having recognised ”“ truly recognised ”“ what had been happening to me, I have found ways to move through the experience and find a deeper sense of peace and joy as a result. It’s not about blame” it’s about opportunity. Grabbing the chance to create something different.”

So, it’s not about blaming ourselves and other victims for being abused and duped… it’s about “ok, so this shit happened to me. It’s not fair. It shouldn’t have happened. I never deserved to treated and abused like this. Now what can I learn from this? Where do I go from here? What’s the gift wrapped and burried somewhere in that big pile of shit that I can use to get out stronger and more true out of it?”

Personally, I don’t think Maslow’s hierarchy of needs are entirely correct if regarded as a hierarchical pyramid form. A hungry person in a flooded area or at risk of being swept away by a tsunami will seek safety before food. And a non-spath mother will forego her hunger and safety to look for her child before fleeing a disaster area. Some spiritual paths include abstination from the physical needs. Maslow himself mentions that several of the levels happen and occur simultaneously.

And no, I don’t think it’s a luxury to get to that mindset. I think it’s a must. I had no job, I barely had enough to pay my rent on time, and was scraping by on food for the last 2 weeks per month for several months. And “survival-victim” mode helped me diddly squat. It was only when I started to study, do creative projects purely for my own satisfaction because I had the time anyway and put some order in my life again with daily routines that I started to get some insights about myself, came to accept and forgive myself. It wasn’t about physical survival. Had I focused on that I would still have felt a loser. Instead I started to self-actualize and through that regained self esteem, which actually landed me temp jobs and be a loving person again to most. If people ask me what my priorities are then I say they are my studies… not the temp jobs, though I need the temp jobs to get by through the month without being worried over my finances.

20years

G1S,

I see truth in what both you and Mel are saying. I mean, I agree with both of you. I’m so glad you posted about this, because spiritual things are so very hard to express.

I think one of the things which Mel said describes the difficulty well. That is, that she is farther along her path now, and didn’t realize when she was just being exposed to this way of thinking, how many layers or levels there were to get through… and that now that she sees that this is the way it has unfolded for her, she realizes that she still has no idea how the rest of it will unfold, just that there is way more to it than initially appears, and also the same concept can be viewed through different lenses at different times, depending upon where the observer is in his/her development (hope I paraphrased you correctly, Mel!).

I have a friend who has taken the Course in Miracles path, which can be a very useful and enlightening path, but also one that can be misunderstood. I guess what I mean is, it takes faith and desire to proceed along ANY spiritual path, and some of it is our own selves compelling us forward, and some of it is being led. And we have to be careful at every step that we are not being led astray, and also not being so afraid to take a step that we remain in darkness. At least, that is how I see it at this time. 😉

So, this friend I’m talking about — I like him a lot, but he DOES. NOT. GET. SOCIOPATHY. He knows my ex-husband but hasn’t seen him for several years. over this weekend, we got together for a family milestone occasion (my son’s birthday) — trust me, I do not go out of my way to socialize with my ex-husband and his spath-wife, but in the interests of my kid’s birthday, I will. So this friend comes along because he knows everyone. Afterwards, he tells me that my ex-husband “seems so much better, now” and “must be all that therapy he has had” and “he really loves his kids and wants to do right by them.” And my friend has “so much compassion for” my ex-husband because his parents weren’t nice to him, growing up. And I just nodded and didn’t even bother trying to explain. my friend is stuck in a “think positive” mentality and cannot grasp that some people do bad things to others, and that it’s “just my perspective.” (that one REALLY grates at me: that it is only my “perspective” that my spath ex-husband abused me! REAAAAALLLLY.) It is the same point of view that wants to blame victims for somehow thinking thoughts that cause them to attract abusive people into their lives.

OK, now I can and do see that there is some truth to that — but only if you have a kind of karmic perspective, which I do. I respect that not everyone does, and it took me many years to come to this view.

I do not feel that I am to blame as a victim of domestic violence and sociopathic abuse. But I do believe that I had a certain mindset which either attracted sociopaths or didn’t protect me enough against them. That is changing for me, now.

Another way to view it and talk about it is boundaries. But I don’t think the purely psychological perspective really gets at all of it — I am quite sure there is a spiritual or hidden component, and that is the part very hard to discern and communicate.

I do, now, view abuse, murder, rape, poverty etc. in a sort of karmic way. Not that these folks “deserve” any of it, but these are experiences which do contain opportunities. I don’t know how else to put it — but putting it this way sounds kind of mean, ugly, or that I am in a safe place and can therefore say such things.

That is sort of true — but not entirely so. I WAS abused by my ex-husband, in the most cruel manner. But since leaving him, the lessons have been unfolding. The lessons are the gifts, and the experience provided the opportunities to learn these lessons. These lessons are Gold to me. I survived an emotionally devastating and scary experience of a bullying and threatening, abusive CPS investigation. There were opportunities in that, too. My kids and I are a lot closer, and I think they grew tremendously in terms of their spath-awareness. That is a huge gift! They are just teenagers, and now they are going out into the world knowing about spaths and how to protect themselves, AND they have the words to talk about it, and they feel safe in talking to me about it.

And, on a lesser and more mundane level, I have just had the very unpleasant experience of not one, not two, but three major appliances breaking on me, creating all kinds of water damage/mess, loss of food, etc. and the need for expensive replacements. This hits my bank account very hard. I don’t have much. However… I do have some, and surprisingly, I have just enough to cover all of this (provided nothing else breaks anytime soon, haha). So even though it is upsetting and inconvenient, I am not saying that I deserve it, or that I caused it through thinking wrong thoughts, and I’m choosing to view the opportunities — to upgrade to more efficient appliances, to check this off my replacement list for the next 10 years or so, to be grateful that I have the resources to handle it, to teach my children how to handle such things, and it is also an opportunity to toss a bunch of the “accumulated stuff” in my house (which got water damaged) which I really needed to clear out anyway.

So, the “bad thing happened,” but I’m choosing to view it positively. (I’m not saying this is easy to do with murder, rape, etc. but you can ALWAYS be open to learning lessons from bad experiences, even if those lessons take years to unfold).

So… I guess I’m just thinking, “bad” stuff happens all the time, in varying degrees, to all of us. I think part of thinking positively is looking for the opportunities and the gifts in the midst of the sorrow, loss and fear. To have that faith to just keep going. Or, as Churchill said, “If you find yourself in Hell, just keep going” – -something like that.

One of the gifts that is coming to me (this gift is not all in yet, by any means!), for which I am very grateful, but would not be in this place if I hadn’t gone through all I’ve gone through so far, is being able to see more clearly. To see patterns and be more of an observer, less of a reactive person who is overwhelmed by seemingly disconnected, chaotic events. It is a calmer place to be.

To me, thinking “positively” does not mean to “look for the good in everyone” though that used to be me. I don’t do that anymore because I see people differently now. I used to look for the good (or manufacture it in my mind if I couldnt’ find it!) and ignore the bad or evil that they did! Not any more. I see the beauty and ugly — both (yes, the hag and the beauty) — it is all a mosaic. It is actually easier now for me to see both, to hold both in mind. But I did go through a period of great disillusionment where I found beauty painful and tried to deny it.

Thinking “positively” also does not mean (to me) magical thinking or meditating on some specific thing I want to attain.

It is more like as is said, raising one’s vibration to something higher or more positive, so you don’t get dragged down. I’m not saying this is an easy thing to do. But it is something that comes with practice and the unfolding of experience, with intention.

it is also not a linear process. So some days are more positive, some days get dragged down. At least that’s where I am with it now.

Ox Drover

G1S, that was why dr. Viktor Frankl’s message in “man’s search for meaning” was so helpful to me.

Who could have lost more than the victims of the Nazis after they had spent years in the concentration/slaves camps starving, just barely staying alive, knowing that at any minute one of the guards could beat them to death.

I have for some reason most of my adult life been fascinated by the survival of this kind of horror…along with ship wrecks, prisoner of war camps and ahve read all I can about both the victims and the psychopaths who ran the camps, as well as the “ordinary” people who went along with the brutality.

I just finished one on the wreck of the Medusa. The captian of the ship was an incompetent and he had a PASSENGER on board who was a blow hard narcissist and who presented himself to this unsure, incompetent captain as an expert. the captain actually let this passenger set the course he said he knew, as well as he let an official who was on the ship RUSH him. the ship hit a sand bar and COULD have saved every passenger is they had taken the available boats and ferried the passengers and crew to shore, but instead, the officials and the captain took the best life boats and put most of the passengers on to a raft that would not support them. 150 people on the raft were standing waist deep in water, huddled together without any supplies at all…only 15 survived. There was fighting on the raft, where people went insane and mutinied, and at the last, the doctor and the stronger passengers killed the weaker ones in order to survive. It was a huge scandal in france and the captain was given 3 years in prison instead of being hung.

The officials in the marine office tried to cover it up and they totally persecuted the whistle blowers who told the truth of what happened. The official that rushed everyone got survivors to sign a letter saying he had nothing to do with the wreck.

They had cut the raft adrift deliberately. It is a great study in human nature during that kind of situation. The man who wrote it is an expert in marine survival and the psychological trauma that the survivors/victims experience.

I do see why some (women especially) stay with an abuser, especially if they have children and little means of support. I do know though from my own experience of a traumatic divorce and desertion by a supporting spouse of a stay at home mom that you can survive if you put your head to it. My kids and I lived in the back of a pick up with a camper shell over it for 3 months while I found a way to live and a roof over my head. Egg donor did not help me, or offer to. I didn’t ask either, and in retrospect am glad that I didn’t take a dime from her though I did borrow a couple of thousand from her which I repaid with INTEREST at 10%. The money I borrowed was for tuition for Patrick and C for private schools. I worked 3 jobs, went to school full t ime, raised a garden and butchered my own meat, bartered baby sitting for mechanic work on my vehicle and other services. I wrote and sold articles for magazines and kept a 3.97 grade average. I got Pel Grants, student loans and every thing I could, though I never got any food stamps or welfare though I was probably entitled to it for a while.

Looking back at that time I probably had PTSD then, but didn’t know it. I did get counseling for my kids and myself through a sliding scale low income service. That did help.

My father in law was (I see now) a full fledged P and my husband was mentally ill and a victim of his father himself. His father had complete control over both his kids and hated me because I did not cow-tow to him. My divorce was something that was right out of an Alfred Hitchcock movie. I think though that it brought out my own strengths because I had no choice, it was do or die and I had two kids to take care of. I do see though too that my sons had TWO psychopathic grandparents at the very least.

Maslow’s heirachy is a good example of human needs is very important for us to consider.

It is another thing for us to look at when we “count our blessings” as well. Having clean water and enough food and a roof over our heads is something that a great many people in the world fight for every day…think of the women in the Muslim countries or in Somolia, Iran, etc. so I count my blessings every day thanking God that I have a roof over my head, food, and most of the things I want and all of the things I need.

Sure I have worked hard for the things I have, but I have also been blessed by God and genetics with fairly good health, a good brain (though now with Short term memory problems) but I have survived and thrived when you get right down to it.

The few gripes I have in life right now, a cast on my right leg and my middle finger swollen and sore from my parrot’s bite Monday but you know…those are small things that happen, they are LIFE….and life happens, but the good thing about that kind of “gripe” is that no one was “out to get me” (well, maybe the bird!) or betraying me, it was just STUFF HAPPENS. I can cuss and go on without being emotionally upset by the stuff happening.

With the BETRAYAL it is a different thing entirely and it hits out of left field, your TRUST is hurt, your soul is injured. It is harder to cope with.

Even the plane crash that killed my husband, as tragic and as sudden as it was, wasn’t anything that anyone did deliberately. I’ve come to peace with that and realized that if my husband had died of cancer or something like that it would probably have been worse. As it was he really didn’t suffer pain and he died doing what he loved and lived long enough we could say good bye and he knew the others were alive because of his taking control from the pilot at the last minute.

We can look at most things that happen in our life I think and “find meaning” in our suffering or the events of our lives. I think it is important to find meaning in things. Finding an “education” in what happens is to me great meaning. Learning to live our lives better today and tomorrow because of what happened yesterday I think is a great thing. No one I think thinks that life is going to always be a “bowl of cherries.” We are going to come up against betrayals and psychopaths in our lives. I think to ONE EXTENT OR ANOTHER EVERYONE DOES. maybe not as severe a betrayal as we had but still being kicked while they are down about something. Either in their personal life, or their professional life, or just an “unreasonable neighbor” we all come up against them. There are too many of them for no one to go through life without encountering one of them. At least we NOW know what they are and how to deal with them. THAT’S WORTH A LOT. THAT’S GREAT MEANING TO ME.

20years

G1S,

You wrote:”My position is that many people never have that luxury and I feel it is very wrong to imply that they are in those positions because they’ve called these conditions into their lives. To me, at least, it implies that nobody else has responsibility for what happens to a person.”

This is very powerful!

Yes, a thousand times YES!!!

When I was leaving my ex-husband, some well-meaning but not very enlightened neighbors were parroting a version of, “well, you know, because you have had this one abusive experience, you probably will keep having them. Women who are abused tend to choose more abusive mates and repeat the experience. They seek it out, they are caught in a cycle of violence.”

OK — that is statistically actually true. But what was missing was how UNHELPFUL that was for me to hear at that time, and also any lack of depth of understanding of the possible reasons why an abuse victim might end up in a series of abusive relationships. I realize now they were just repeating stuff they’d gotten probably from reader’s digest or women’s day mag, without any foundation of understanding of what a cycle of violence IS.

I just mean, I was not in a place where I could hear any of what they were saying, while what they were saying was not “untrue” it was totally unhelpful AND damaging to me. I felt blamed. And I think they probably wanted to be helpful and didn’t realize that they were blaming me. They didn’t have enough wisdom to realize what they were saying. They didn’t realize the depth of their own ignorance.

And I think that is the difficulty. We are all ignorant, many of us want to be helpful, we really don’t know what to say, maybe say the wrong thing or don’t put it across well or don’t realize how ignorant we are.

But at the same time… we do have wisdom to offer, and sometimes people are in a place where we can hear it. So we should at least try.

Above, all, what I learned most strongly from my experiences, is that the voices of the victims need to be heard. That includes targets of sociopaths. We’ve lived it, and we can all learn from each other.

I think it is hard, when first reaching out to a victim, to know where he or she is, what he or she most needs to hear. And therapists are not always the most enlightened folks. Some are, but some do great damage if they do not “get” sociopathy or are not able to discern where a victim is in their stage of recovery from the experience.

Those of us who want to speak from a spiritual perspective can also do damage, and it would be good to keep that in mind. Victims learn the lessons when they are ready to learn it, they will hear when they are ready to hear, etc. Everyone’s process is individual including the timetable. But we all share the same vocabulary, and the same words can have vastly different meanings, depending where you are in the process. Misunderstandings can arise.

darwinsmom

20years,

The gifst in the pile of shit to me are my studies, my close ties with my friends and parents, my moving to a new apartment, the forced learning to budget, discovering how cheap I CAN live and still enjoy my day, my “only if I can trust a man and when he’s worth it”-intimacy thinking, and my new view on society. Without the cataclistic relationshit of hell, and the losses I experienced in the aftermath such as the job, I would have kept on struggling at a school with a principal who has no spine against the kids, never sure I’d have a teaching position in the same school next year… etc. I still am not sure, but now I care less about it, since I took a part of that in my own hands again with the studies. The whole experience and learning to re-evaluate my social views has improved my abilities regarding boundaries significantly, and this has gained me the respect of my pupils, my colleagues, my principal and secretary.

And lastly it has given me the wisdom that I can never be certain that shit won’t happen to me anymore, but also with the self-confidence that I’ll survive that too and piece myself and a satisfying life together again.

20years

Oxy, you managed to overcome your broken finger to type! Good for you!

I’m going to zero in on one particular thing you said, and I don’t mean this in a critical way because your story amazes and inspires me. You said that you can understand why some women might stay with an abuser especially if children are involved, although you managed to leave and survive.

(heavy sigh)

But… your husband was not the father of these kids, right? I think that makes some difference. It is very hard to leave a husband who is the father of your kids, if he is a controlling (and dangerous, violent) man who will use the legal system against you, using the kids as pawns.

I might have gotten your story wrong — if so, I apologize. I’m not even one speck being critical! Just want to point out that LEAVING is a separate thing from SURVIVING afterwards, and then of course also moving in a positive direction towards THRIVING. Some people cannot even leave — to get to the point of being able to survive in the back of a pickup truck. The reasons are not always financial. Very often, it seems too dangerous to leave, even though staying is too dangerous. It is too hard to know when you get to the point where it is too dangerous to stay, yet possibly safe enough to leave.

I think if it were physically safe to leave (this includes legal maneuvers by the lying spouse to get custody of the kids where he/she can abuse them now out of your sight and protection!) — setting the financial part aside — more people WOULD leave. Financial stuff is so very difficult, but it is possible to survive on very little, as you did.

But again, I may be getting your story wrong. I am sorry, I cannot remember if you were in danger from your ex-husband physically or legally while you were living that very basic existence (and I’m not at all minimizing what you achieved — it is an amazing accomplishment). Everyone who has successfully left an abusive spouse is courageous AND lucky. One of the hardest things to do, frequently misunderstood how hard it is.

Ox Drover

20 years, no my husband WAS the father of my kids….and I was a stay at home mom for several years. My job skills where we lived were not marketable much above minimum wage because I had been a stay at home mom.

He deserted me, and I didn’t even know it was coming. It was totally a blind side betrayal. I should have seen it coming but I was so in love with him I thought he walked on water. I never could have thought he would leave me or the kids. He never saw them again. He paid child support through the court (not much but some) and it helped me survive after it started coming 18 months after our split. Plus, his father managed to get my “half” of our joint assets down to my share was about 1/10th or less plus I had medical bills that I ended up paying. He was supposed to carry medical insurance on the kids but he never did. I had no money to fight him in court.

Except for the actual divorce which was engineered by his father I can’t say that my husband was abusive to me, the situation was abusive however. Just in leaving the way he did was abusive but actually I don’t blame him, considering what stresses he was under. I feel much empathy and sympathy for him really. He was a very mixed up man who had been controlled and abused by his P father since birth. He never broke free that I know of. He was in survival mode I think, emotionally, to survive his father’s mental abuse. In retrospect I feel sorry for him as a victim as well. It took me a long time to piece the puzzle together and to see what was going on then, but only in retrospect.

My husband that died in the plane crash was my second husband. we had been friends since I was a teenager. We were together 20 years and had a good marriage.

20years

Oxy,

Thank you for giving these details — it helps me understand. Yes, yours is a different sort of devastating experience. I can see why you “get” betrayal so well.

Ox Drover

My divorce happened in 1980, I had two kids that were pre-teens, a cat, a dog and nothing else. It was a bizarre night mare about as crazy as the trojan horse P, but I have not talked much about my divorce here on LF. The P involved was my father in law. I went back to college, finished up my RNP and went to work at that. I came to acceptance with my divorce a long time ago, though I didn’t really realize all the mechanics of what went on until I started studying about psychopaths and realized how the whole thing went down. I did realize before that that my father in law was the mechanism behind the divorce I just didn’t realize what he was. Maybe I would have done things differently with Patrick if I had known about psychopaths from my experience with my father in law. But I didn’t know so, I didn’t have that help. But you know, we learn even if we dont’ exactly know what we are dealing with, but knowing more exactly we can at least fend them off in the future.

The knowledge I have now gives me strength when I spot a dysfunctional person—cluster B or not—and push them out of my life. I cleaned out my rolodex of abusive people, of people who suck you dry, who take more than they give, who are not caring, compassionate people. They don’t have to be flaming cluster Bs to be the kind of people I don’t want to deal with.

If they are abusive to others, or in any way dishonest…as Lady MacBeth said “Out! damn spot!”

silvermoon

Yesterday I saw the hag, today I see the beautiful young woman

As I read your posts OX, I am reminded of how our view does change.

Funny how that works.

None of us “signed up” for the devastating experiences we have endured. And it is possible out of that to make choices based on what we have learned.

Its the best we can do. And yours is an example that gives tremendous insights to us all.

Yes, our circles get smaller. And that is ok.

My father said “you’ve done a lot of livin’ ” and it it was his way of talking about a lot of learning and experience.

I don’t think we choose it. I don’t think we’re fated. But I do think that these things happen and that we can learn a lot from them even if it is all so very different from what we hoped or expected life could be.

And we can fend them off and go on. Survive mule kicks, parrot bites and other problems.

There are ways.

We find peace not by getting all that we want, but by learning to accept all that we have and that we know and go forward from it.

Nought’s had, all’s spent,
Where our desire is got without content;
‘Tis safer to be that which we destroy
Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy.

the sisterhood

Thank you, Spoon. I think you just about summed it up. It sounds like your friend and I have a lot in common.

I do have to say that the thinking part was certainly not a conscience thinking. It was much deeper, more primal, if you will. That’s what I meant by it coming from an emotional place. Perhaps I should have said it was my spirit in desperate need of love. Because it was my spirit that was really wounded in my life journey. I really, truly beleive my spritual wound is what brought about the need for love.

I think that my ex just cemented my belief that I am unlovable, he was not the cause of my believing that. He just reinforced beliefs that I fought against my whole childhood. I never thought my parents were right about me being unlovable, but when the ex came along and pulled the rug out from under me, too, well that just about destroyed me.

The inner strength I was referring to was a glimmer of love I did have for myself. That was a divine gift. I know this for sure. From the people I was exposed to and the abusive ideas that were instilled in me, I should not have even known self-love at all. I should not be where I am today. But the Divine Grace placed that love in my heart from birth and I was able to retain it. Even if it was just a little bit.

I try not to carry those negative belief systems into my current life, but unfortunately it is a lot of hard work re-conditioning the soul. I am very happy to say that progress is being made ever so slowly. One moment at a time.

spoon

the sisterhood

You are correct a lot of what we came to believe as children has little to do with conscience thinking at least not what we do now. Some beliefs come from what we see.

I had my friend take the thought that of “I’m unlovable.” She had follow it back to the past. She did find the place where she made the decision that she was unlovable and the last event that led to her sat crying on the back porch petting her dog and telling it your the only one that loves me. The parents gave the dog away a few weeks latter. She was 6. Talk about a stab in the heart. I helped her rip the emotions off of it and place the statement that she was lovable.

Yeah psychos do use the damage against us. It just locks us into a no win type of thing.

Ox Drover

Your welcome. Glad you liked it.

spoon

G1S.

Just my take on it. If it comes off a little frustrated it’s not at you but at myself.

Proverbs 23:7 As a man thinketh in his heart so is he,……
Proverbs 4:23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

What beliefs one has is important. And beliefs are created from what we think.

The stepfather was a product of this, it was evil. As to, the one’s that killed the mother and her daughter, evil.
Free will. It’s their free will that got them to this state. I’m talking about the killers. Did those killed deserve it no. Why them? Can’t say. Bad things happen.

Not everything that happen too us is brought to us by how we think. But how we responded to what is happening [the event] has everything to do with “how, what, why” we think. Because once an event has started our view of it is all we have. This view is our experience based on what we think of the event.. It’s not the event but what is in our head. This is where we experience the event. Our thoughts beliefs etc all come together [most is already decided] we run the event through all our filters and out pops the meaning. And now we have our reality. Then we take whatever action the meaning dictates. And this all starts as a thought. Like a small pebble the ripple effects move out and the thought can grow and become a powerful force in our life of either good or evil. This is like the begets thought to idea, to decision, to belief to action. The fruit is in the seed. [Ana I can toss a salad]

I know a girl 22 years old that is with a psychopath right now. Just had a baby. Lives in the country in a compound Grandmother and mother of the psychopath all live in view of each other. The place is surrounded by trees and there is only one road in and Grandmother owns that. . Anyone that goes and see’s this girl can bet either one of the other calls the psycho. Seen it done many times. Fifteen minutes after arriving it calls. A very bad situation. Uncle is a cop to boot. And she has no car. But there are 3 different people that offered her a place. But she has turned everyone down. And there is no doubt that she is fighting for her very survival. She is a prisoner with a hostage. But no one is holding a gun to her head. [Not saying it hasn’t happened] There are places for her to go to.

This gets me to “I don’t think people remains with Ps exclusively because of denial.” Agree it’s not denial it’s self. Add to it, the reasons she bought into his crap that keeps her in denial. And that has to do with what she believes about herself, the world and her place in it plus about others. Unlovable to I want a home and any and everything in between. Her inability to deal with the reasons she bought into it is the real problem. She knows it’s bad there. She knows he’s jumping anything he can. One was her ?? best friend. And it is sad. Breaks my heart. She was a girl that lit up the room. Now she can’t even look you in the eye. But without her making a move nobody can do a thing except pray. You know how she is very agitated and trying to maintain the illusion by anticipating what he wants and since he doesn’t she’ll never get it right.

When she met the guy and had she already grown the thoughts that I don’t put up with liars into a belief. It would have ended before it started. But she is holding on to the hurt from childhood, the lack of support, love etc. And she is looking for others to do what only she can.

Does it excuse the psycho hell no. Dose it excuse my father for killing my mother no. He did make at least an attempt at it he shot himself. How about his sister who terrorized a small boy nope. As with the young girl It came down to me. I was the only one that could change it. There was nothing anyone could do. A little support would have been nice. And the change all started with a thought.

My 2 Cents

Yes, it is my fault for staying with the P because of what I believed about the world. It’s my fault because people lied and I believed that they were telling the truth. It’s my fault that my beliefs were based on trust as that is what normal people use to feel safe in this world.

It’s my fault that the trust I had in humanity reflected on my face and gave me confidence, confidence that was misplaced and obviously undeserved. In fact my spath said to me, “you are arrogant.” He also said, “you live the life of Reilly, living is easy with eyes closed.”

It’s my fault that psychopaths can’t stand to see that confidence on my face. They know what it means: innocence, trust, love and connection with humanity. Those are all the things that they ENVY and they will rob us of them whenever they see them on our faces. They will make sure to erase any smidgen of those things: innocence, trust, love and connection with humanity.

My spath told me how he does it. First, he gets you really high, so that the fall is more devastating. So in other words, he takes you to the peak of innocence, trust, love and connection, then he pulls the rug out so that you can see that it was all FAKE.

Yes, my spath actually protected me from the world. He bore the brunt of relating to the outside world, while I dealt with logistics. That way, I was not exposed to any evil — except him. Without exposure, I never got an opportunity to observe and examine how people lie and cheat. Never figured it out because he protected me from that. He made sure to keep me innocent. He wanted to destroy that innocence himself, so that he could see the look on my face as it all came crashing down at once. It’s more dramatic that way.

I have to take responsibility for not having enough imagination. It was beyond my imagination that people could be so evil. Really, I could see the evil right before my eyes. So why did I deny it? Well to see something and to experience it are 2 different things. I had never experienced the extent of the evil I was seeing. It is a slime so sticky and disgusting that I couldn’t connect it to any state of being that I was familiar with. So it went into the WTF? bucket and there it stayed until he allowed me to experience the mask slip first hand.

I never believed I was unlovable, on the contrary, I believed I was loved by my spath. Moreover, I took responsibility for loving him back even more. He seemed so pathetic. He seemed to need it.

But now I’m told that the reason I stayed with him is because I didn’t love myself, so in fact, I must BE unlovable if I couldn’t love myself. Who could possibly love me, if I can’t even love myself?

I remember the morning that the spath walked up to me, out of the blue, as I was having my espresso and said, “No one will EVER want you.” It was all I could do to keep from laughing because on the contrary, men are drawn to me all the time and I never let him know because he was so jealous. But, now I’m told that, in fact, he must have been right because if I had loved myself, I wouldn’t have been with HIM and that proves that nobody will ever want me. I guess I need to learn how to love myself.

Yes, my reality was what I chose to believe. My choice to believe in the goodness of humanity, clashed with his choice to “hate humanity”. When you have two opposing beliefs under one roof, which will win? Good or evil? Apparently evil wins because I no longer believe in the goodness of all humanity. I no longer believe that I was as lovable as I thought. I no longer believe that I loved myself enough.

It was a set up and it worked. Now who would want to set me up that way? Who would want me to accept responsibility for the evil that chanced to envy my trusting face?

Or maybe, there’s another way to look at it.

Perhaps I was born innocent.

Perhaps, like the spath, I stayed in my childhood too long, me in my innocence and him in his envy.

I don’t need to exchange one set of beliefs for another. That would be just trading places, or fence sitting.

Objective reality tells us that there is good and there is evil. We can trust ourselves to recognize both by the way they make us feel. The spath has revealed his tricks.

The only other thing to remember is that we are responsible for letting evil continue its reign when we permit it into our lives. That’s what happens when we sit in the sandbox with evil and play their games.

Aesop

Hi there. Well, I have read all of the posts on this thread and enjoyed it very much. I find I get to the end and lose the thread a bit, except for the last one i read :).

I am on the spiritual path also, and looking to reach that ultimate place of gratitude toward the spath(s) in my life. I can see that to get there, to have the time in this life, and be given the insights and experiences needed, is a gift. I get a bit impatient with it, wondering whether my efforts will ‘cut the mustard’ when the reaper calls.

OOOh, that positive thinking! 🙂

Hope your finger and leg are feeling better today Ox D. What happened to your leg? My Viktor Frankl book is here, and next in line. I am going to bed now to read the rest of ‘The Magic’, so i can start it tomorrow. I am already taken with it, as it has a picture of a chaffinch (?) on the front. I can imagine being in a Camp, and finding the beauty, hope, and presence of God/the Universe, in the sighting of a bird.

I have two cats, and wonder sometimes, if given the choice between fur and feather, which would be chosen? The cosiness of fur, or the flight of feather? Hmmmm, Target or spath? Target EVERY time!!!! I would never want to be a spath, and would have my throat cut with a rusty blunt knife before that.

Ok, need to end on a positive note, given the weight of the thread…. i have been posting post it notes with ‘thankyou’ on all over the house the last couple of days, and repeating it over in my head when i remember. I’ve had some pretty bad dreams for about a week now, nasty stuff, and have started to say prayers during the day. Certainly the post its are highly effective, but i am not sure how to pray, coming from an aethiest family. Any advice much appreciated.

Happy days to you all xx

clair

I’m gonna merge the 2 view points: positive thinking + pragmatic realism: not either-or, but both. Think of the best & most positive, but paddle like hell towards shore. Pragmatically & realistically speaking, evil exists, Ns & SPs exist. However, I will use my pragmatic, realistic thinking to avoid these negatives & focus on the positives in life. So, when the vampires appear, call on the angels to kick ’em out.

clair

Aesop:

Here’s how I think of praying: open your heart to Gd and speak to him/her. If you want something more formal, chose a religion & study it or study many religions. However, I don’t think formal religion necessarily teaches how to open our hearts to Gd.

Ox Drover

I think that man is an emotional being, a thinking being and a spiritual being. I think we need to heal on all three planes in order to be “balanced” and whole people.

Maslov’s list of things that we need starts with the physical…the air first of all, then water, food, shelter, safety etc. (paraphrasing) and all the way up to ‘self actualization.” I think that last is the spiritual aspect.

There are people who will tell you that only a VERY few people like Mother Theresa have actually become “self actualized” but I do NOT believe that. I think that plain old you and me can reach that point. We don’t have to be world famous or walk on water, or give up everything we own to the poor, we only have to reach a point that we are unselfish, compassionate and caring for others, but also unselfish for ourselves, compassionate for ourselves and care for ourselves as well. Whatever higher power or God that we believe in we follow that to the best of our abilities.

I think if Viktor Frankl can find MEANING in a Nazi prison camp then we can find meaning in our lives and even the worst thing that ever happened to us.

Sebbo_Ricadonna

i have been going through a very similar situation with my fallout with a sociopathic woman. I find that I am losing sleep. Every night I manage only about 3 hours of sleep. This is due to my constant re-occurance of feelings for her as well as the way she emotionally abused me. I think about her with other men as she was very promiscuos (as with most sociopaths) and I am enraged that I have copped a “raw deal” as she no longer lets me contact her as she now feels that she has the “upper hand”. Its terrible with all these power plays. I sent one last email in response to her and I got no reply. Now I am left to pick up the pieces. Is this really moving on? I have no choice but to rid this poision from my life. Because at the end of the day, these sociopaths are poison to our soul and the best cure for poision is QUARANTINE.

Ox Drover

Dear Sebbo_ricadonna,

Welcome to LoveFraud. I’m sorry that you feel a need to join our number but there is healing, compassion and help here.

You are actually fortunate that she refuses contact with you…and that she is out of your life.

NO CONTACT is the only “cure” and is the start of healing. I know that right now you would maybe like to contact her, to get closure…to get some sleep…but those things will come with NO CONTACT.

Read here and learn and you will help yourself heal. Knowledge is power, so take back your power with learning about them, and about yourself. Why you were vulnerable to her and the red flags that will point out another one if you meet them and you will in the future meet them, so knowledge is power. Again welcome.

missymooz

Hi All,

I dont seem to get much responses to what I post!!!!! But here goes!!!…….
to Sebbo_Ricadonna:
It is very hard when they cut you off, especially as you know you had strong feelings for her, and you cant understand why they would not be missing you, but as Ox Drover says No contact is the best and only policy. Mine was like yours, he ignored me!!! Oh he would send out a cherry every now and again, and I would get excited and respond, then…..nothing!!! The way I first handled it was to remember that it was all a game to him!! And why do I want to hear from him, all he says is lies anyway, and you end up all battered & bruised while he goes on with more girlfriends etc. Now that I have had no contact for over months he hates it!!! Hahaha. He cannot understand why i would not still need him and be dependant on him!! I know thats not why we do it, but to me its a bonus!!!!! The benefit to me has been that the moving on feeling is real. I dont hardly ever think of him, and if I do its not as devestating as it once was. I understand so much more clearly what he is without all his BS getting in the way!!!
I hope this helps you.

To Aesop:
Praying to God is quite simple! He invites us to be his friend and to get to know him. So you just pour out your whole heart to him, you dont need special words or rituals. He welscomes you to speak to him all day long, whenever suits you. He knows what we are going through, one of his first angelic creatures was the worst kind of Spath!!!! Wanting all of Gods glory for himself!!! Using anything at his disposal to try and kick God out of the equation!!!!

I have to agree with the sisterhood though that we dont all ask for these things to happen. I think I was doing a great job of protecting my girls from pedophiles, as i was targeted by an uncle. But that didnt stop my N or S step dad taking advantage of my daughter while we were all asleep!! I do not believe that my thought process or the fact that I felt I was unlovable resulted in my daughter being hurt.

Anyway I hope I have been able to help and please keep up all the good work, I come here oftern, this site helps me to survive every day. It keeps me grounded as to what I am dealing with, because I too have people who think it was just my perception of abuse, even though my children refuse to ever live with him again.

bluemosaic

I chose to pull this up because I no longer am beating myself up for still being in need of lessons at 46 years of age, of having had the most painful relationship of my life when I thought I was well enough to choose a mate wisely, because I am still letting go 10 months post my discard, because I still cry occasionally, since I thought after a lifetime of seeking emotional and spiritual recovery from a tough and traumatic life…that I should have known better that to love a man with the traits he did display, and most importantly, that this most painful event in my life will result in a inner growth experience for me.
I am going to use this pain to “be” more authentic myself, never allow another to take me over-control me, steadfast in maintaining my identity, always take responsibility for my own well-being, hold others accountable for actions that are inappropriate and abusive, listen to my instincts, require respect and honorable treatment from a man..leave when I recieve opposite. I derserved better than what he dealt. I knew that from day one. I am not dumb and worthless as he tried to convince me at the end, during his abrasive discard. I was just still in a trance. Maybe my trance kept the pain from shattereing me completely.
It is all ok, I am going to be gentle with myself today ( thanks to LF’ers for telling me to be so!)

Grateful for this healing place. Blessings to all ! : )

Bluemosaic

fightforwhatsright

Bluemosaic: I’m glad you had the courage to express your frustration with trying and trying and still finding yourself with difficult people/circumstances. I feel the same way and I am 52. I think the same triggers that remind me of unhealthy and familiar family members will always be there for me. I am attracted to them even when there are red flags. I connect love and anxiety because I was born into that. Like you, I plan to just keep educating myself and hope I do better each time.

bluemosaic

Thx FFWR,

Having been a long term 12 stepper, I would have thought I was able to stand up for myself by this jucntion of my life and not fall in love with an unwell, abusive man. I was wrong. The deeply ingrained pathways in my brain were perfect paths for him to tread on…and he knew it. I wish I had, but now, perhaps I will. I see that what I wanted from him, was something no human being can ever give to me.
I know I still have alot of healing to do, feeling like I have spent my whole life trying to put pieces together, that others took apart, can be very frustrating. Atleast we did not marry. I remind myself how much more damage may have been done, had he felt I was worth hanging onto. Thx for your response, I wish you well.

Bluemosaic

fightforwhatsright

Thank you, Bluemosaic:

I attended al-anon meetings for decades. I need to now, but am agoraphobic and had to find online support as I have here and another place. I know my own need to pity, caretake, want love from the wrong person, etc. will never completely disappear. But, I have changed some thinking to protect myself and this website is educating me even more. My father wasn’t just a gambling, food addict. He has severe narcissistic personality disorder. My current Lodger isn’t just an alcoholic. He is a cheating, lying, porn addicted, conniving, pity playing, abusive sociopath. The more I learn, the better I will do.

Thank you so much for wishing me well. I need it as I have one day of rest before the Lodger comes back. I hope you have beautiful mosaic day!

bluemosaic

Hi FFWR,

You are most welcome for my well wishes, and being the deeply empathetic nurturer I am, here is a big hug to go with it! ((((HUG))))
I am so very grateful to all of the kind souls on this site, for helping me from the first days of hysteria to present, the least I can do is come back and connect with others. I do care, maybe one of my biggest flaws and assets, I care for others…even a stranger.
I agree with you 100%, there may always be certain traits that attract me to a man, due to dear old Dad. I can choose to look and run, next time. My Father, sex-addict, molester, alcoholic…no wonder the spath I fell for seemed like “home sweet home!”

I did something very empowering today. I gave back, in a volunteer format, to other girls who have been abused, with my profession as a vehicle of helping and building their self-esteem. I joined an organization that does outreach. It felt wonderful to look into their eyes, see them smile, feeling strong. Maybe when they are my age, they will be able to tell a spath to hit the road, before he gets his hooks in. If one of them is touched by anything I do, it will have been worth what I went through.
It gets easier to let go everyday, little by little. He was the one who was worthless, not me. I give with my energy…he only takes and destroys. I don’t even hate him for that, I just see what is empty…his heart and soul. I did not want a man with an emptiness that would have pained me the rest of my life.

Blessings and love to all,

Bluemosaic

fightforwhatsright

bluemosaic, That is awesome! Helping the younger ones is the best way for you to utilize your nurturing to help good people victimized by spaths instead of helping spaths move on to new victims. Home will look different as time goes by. On Lovefraud, I try to use all of my skills I had lost track of while isolating and/or begging the wrong people to care about me. It does make a difference in how much I am willing to “give” of myself to the wrong people. I would rather give and receive equally here. Keep up the great work for your community!

bluemosaic

Thanks FFWR,
I am thrilled to have found a place to give of myself to young girls and women. In my heart, I feel I am going to help build up the esteem of these girls so a spath will not have a future target in them. One thing he wanted to take from me..that he was unsuccessful in doing, my unquenchable caring/giving nature. I will just be very selective in whom I give to, from here forward. You are so right, giving and receiving equally, as here on LF, and in our lives with caring safe souls who need our love and attention….makes us human and real. Hugs!

Bluemosaic

Tea Light

Congrats on the wonderful work you are doing Blue! Whenever I read your posts I always recall the story about the bullying tantrum your ex threw in the restaurant over the macaroni cheese!! Blue, you truly are far too good for the disordered creep. All that you are giving these girls will add to the peace and happiness in the world that comes from self respect and respect for others. You really are miles on in your recovery journey Blue from those early terrible days. Onwards and upwards!

bluemosaic

Thanks to you Tea Light,

For all your kind words and for listening to me when I first came here, in so much pain. I still have moments when I am hurting, but it is getting better. I do see it differently now, that I am too good for him. Yes, the mac n cheese incident is infamous on line and among my family n friends. It was ridiculous. The one point he did have, I ought to never give over anything to anyone when it does not feel right. I wish I had the moment to do over. He would have worn the mac n cheese and I would have ended it then. Ce la vie’.
Hugs to you Tea Light! Are you doing well? Is your life settling and happy? I hope for you peace and a spath free future!

Bluemosaic

Tea Light

Blue, thanks for the mac n cheese wearing spath visual . Lol. Hey, we’d all do it differently if we had the benefit of what we know now. My abuser would have worn that horrible rare steak he took pleasure in eating in front of me and tried to make me eat too, knowing the sight of the blood oozing out of the steak make me feel ill. Anyway yes, day 18 …I think. Of peace and quiet since he last rang and I picked the damn phone up as he was ringing from a new sim card number, he knows all his known numbers are blocked on my cell. To hell with him. I hope it’s all over, that there will be no further stalking.

So, I’m getting there Blue. I’m a lot calmer and clearer minded than I was when I left him 6 months ago and came here…where the good people are! Me too Blue. Hope you have a totally disorderd person free future. Take care today. Peace and Love.

NotWhatHeSaidofMe

Hello bluemosaic,
I wanted to thank you b/c I have withdrawn pretty much from life but have so wanted to volunteer to help people, and then talked myself out of it b/c I thought it was egotistical of me to presume I had anything worthy to give. Your messages here affirm for me a realization I finally had: that I am a sensitive person, very caring and nurturing, and that wanting to serve does not make me needy or pathetic, but reveals my spirit of dignity and desire to be nurturing is a worthy and special gift for me to share. Love is the only thing that matters so how can wanting to nurture ever be a bad thing? (except as defined by my now ex husband.)

I have been reading the messages of hope and progressive healing on this website for quite some time. I was dumped by my husband after years of doing and giving all my best. But I seemed to have been unable to find a way to fix my flaws. During my marriage, I was ridiculed for my stupidity (thick skull). And b/c I cried a lot about feelings that I couldn’t quite put my finger on, (thin skin) knowing I FELT things I could not prove, accused of imagining insults and disrespect. In the end, I was right. But all during it, I was a mass of confusion. This website has helped me make sense.

bluemosaic

Hello Thick Skull, Thin Skin,

And God how awful it feels to address you that way, it is just what a sociopath wants the most, to tear apart the good they see in us and get us to degrade ourselves. No offense. I have caught myself repeating the insults he threw at me, ” bad lover, too emotional, emo-unlevel under attack, not as good of a cook as his ex-W…” oh the list was long. Ofcourse, I took it to heart. His words lasted moments. My repeating them in my head…well, I still here them sometimes. 11 months post discard, 3 m NC.
I am glad something I said helped you in anyway. It gives me hope that I am not as useless as he told me I was. The volunteering I am doing, it is so connected to this whole thing. If I had grown to love myself so much , as a young woman, that no one could come along and ; change my identity, tell me how to live, accept abuse, tolerate unbearable interactions and betrayals with other women, ask me to hurt -humiliate and damage myself-and get compliance, and so much more debasing that it is impossible to list…..Had I a solid grasp on who I was and not willing to drop it all to please him, this would not have happened to me. I hope and pray that something I do with these young girls, prevents a future of heartache.
I understand the desire to cave. I have done that too. I still want to somedays. Take heart, I do not know your story, but I do know that you want to heal, or you would not be here : ) This community is full of wonderful, wise caring souls. Have you been on here long? When I first came, someone suggested Kathleen Hawks articles on healing path. They have helped me alot, and I am still wading through them. You can find them under authors on top tool bar.

Most of all, beleive that you are wonderful just the way you are. I felt pretty good about myself when I met the spath. My self esteem was actually pretty high. He so masterfully drew me in…as he pulled me down, I hardly noticed that I was regressing to years past when my esteem was low. Remember the things that are wonderful about you, that you know to be true. Make a list of them, remind yourself that you have value and have a right to be loved and accepted just as you are. And…BIG HUGS!

Bluemosaic

bluemosaic

Hi Tea Light,

Happy day 18 to you : ) I am glad you are feeling some peace and calm. May he drop off the face of the earth, and you never see or hear from him again. Some of these types are harder to shake than others. I am sorry for you that he stalked you, truly scary, knowing what is in their hearts and souls…not alot.
Thank you , for all the kind support you have given to me. I wish you a happy and permenent NC. Hugs,

Bluemosaic

Imara

Oh TSTS (Can’t even bring myself to type the whole darned thing) Just take what Bluemosaic and the others say to heart!!!! What disordered people say can be dismissed with a pshttttt….For them it’s ALWAYS opposite day!!!
Take good care of yourself and believe in the good of who you are. At the end of the day it IS all about love…..love for ourselves and for everyone else. It’s their misfortune that they cannot love.

Tea Light

Welcome to the Lovefraud community ThinSkin! I hope you won’t mind but like Blue ( who is one of the wonderful kind souls) it’s painful to read your username, I will drop the ThickSkull if that is ok with you much as I and other posters call LoveSucks just Love! Anyway, glad you are here with us and glad your ex…..is ex.

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