REGISTER | LOGIN
By | September 25, 2009 172 Comments

Sometimes “victory” is simply walking away upright

By Ox Drover

Donna’s great article about Victory, of a sort, over a sociopath the other day got me to thinking.

Just what is “victory?”

My wonderful stepfather was a young basketball coach when he got his first real job coaching for a very small rural school which had not had a winning game in over a decade. The team was dispirited and had no real expectation of ever winning a game.

One of the local coaches bragged that he would beat them “by a hundred points!” at the next game. The team thought there was a good possibility that that coach’s team could do just that. However, it is “good sportsmanship” for a coach playing a much weaker team to let their second, third, and fourth strings get a chance to play, and to win over the weaker team, but not “tromp” them.

Daddy thought this other coach’s brag to stomp and tromp his team was poor sportsmanship so he made a plan. When the fourth quarter started and Daddy’s team had the ball, they “froze” it (which was legal in the game then) and wouldn’t either shoot the ball or take a chance on losing it, so passed the ball from one of Daddy’s team members to another the entire quarter. They didn’t make any points, but they kept the other team from even getting their hands on the ball the entire quarter, and thus making points against them. Daddy’s team didn’t win, but the other coach didn’t win by his “hundred points” either. That little team went on the next year to win their division championship because of the confidence that Daddy inspired in them.

Sometimes “winning” or “victory” can be interpreted in different ways. I’m also reminded of the old Country and Western song, the “Winner” where an older man and a younger man are in a bar talking. The younger man wants to be a “winner” in bar fight brawls, and the older man is educating him on what is “winning” and what isn’t.

Sure, you can get into a fight and you may inflict more damage on your opponent than he inflicts on you in the fight, but like the old man said, “He gouged out my eye, but I won.” Sometimes it is better to walk away from a fight and not lose more than you have already lost, or allow your opponent to take another “pound of flesh” in your attempts to “get justice.”

It isn’t always about getting what you deserve, or victory over them, or even seeing that they get “what they so richly deserve,” sometimes, I think, “winning” simply means keeping them from taking more out of you and, like Daddy’s team, “freezing the ball.” Sometimes, it is like the would-be barroom brawler, walking away (intact) with the other guy yelling curses in your direction.

It is emotionally tough to watch a cheater “get away with it” when they have ripped us off, and go “waltzing away” unscathed and apparently the victor. It eats at our sense of fairness to let them “succeed” and not pay a price for their bad behavior.

Yet, sometimes, “discretion is the better part of valor” to use an old phrase, or to “be a live dog, rather than a dead lion,” and “retreat and live to fight another day.”

Those victims who are not able to fight for a “victory” of any sort, I don’t think need to feel that they have “failed” because they chose not to fight the sociopath.

Too many times fighting the psychopaths are like “fighting a circular saw,” as my grandmother would have said. It “just isn’t worth it,” because the damage to yourself will be worse than you can possibly inflict on the psychopath. They stack the odds so in their own favor, that even if you “win,” you end up like the old brawler sitting in the barroom, broken and so gravely injured yourself in your effort to gain a “victory, of sorts” that in retrospect the price was too high.

Sometimes, it is better to walk away a “loser” but still intact, and with your head held high, using the energy and resources you have left to focus on healing yourself, on recovering what you have lost in terms of finances and strength, and take care of yourself. To me that is also a “viable victory.”


172
Comment on this article

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Easy

This is a serious point!
The Peas in life cannot accept loosing! So for me letting him think he still had the goods on me was well worth the pride! I know who really won! NC is a winner , and it is also our revenge! Often the best kind!

hens

.No contact is our only weapon and our ultimate salvation……

Skippy

A very important and realistic post, Oxy. Thanks so much for once again sharing your excellent insights and priceless metaphors. Did you get this gift from your grandmother? 🙂

I don’t think you saw a comment I posted on another thread – one of the reasons I was checking in because the last time I was here, you had a confrontation looming. You were feeling strong, you said, which I was very glad to hear. If it’s transpired already, I hope it went well.

Ox Drover

Thanks, guys!

Skippy, well the confrontation was actually with a minister that I thought might help me get my egg donor to stop sending money to the P-son. My sons and I went to him and told him our story (he is a long time friend of my parents’) and he listened, we also took copies of the letters my P-son wrote to the Trojan Horse EX-convict buddy of his telling him how to manage and manipulate our family.

Well, time passed and the minister had promised to read all the stuff, digest it and speak to my egg donor, but as weeks passed and nothing happened, I called him, “Too busy” was the continuing refrain….more weeks pass…and more. So I finally wrote him a letter asking him to send back my stuff that i had left with him, and “thanking” him for listening to me.

Actually my letter was VERY CAREFULLY worded so it wouldn’t come back to bite me in the butt later…and I got the package yesterday—-with a really “judgmental” and actually hateful letter back from him. It really pithed me off! And believe it or not, I can FEEL the stress today, I am SORE all over, achy, and totally fatigued. Just from the STRESS of getting VERY angry at that letter. I ALLOWED THAT MAN’S hateful judgmental comments to make me literally sick with a big jolt of stress hormones.

REPEAT: I ALLOWED this, but at the same time, I also realize that the reason this big surge of stress hormones hit me so hard was that I AM NOT LIVING CONTINUALLY 24/7 under the same load of stress that I had lived under, in which case ANOTHER upset wouldn’t even have BEEN FELT because i was already MAXED OUT.

Which goes back to the “victory” to be had in NOT fighting this stuff after it is “over”—-LET IT GO! Because when we fight it, even though I didn’t have a big expectation that this might help, I did have SOME expectation and I told myself if I didn’t take the OPPORTUNITY that runnning into this guy was, that I might always regret that I hadn’t AT LEAST TRIED. And I did my BEST to keep my expectations down, and I did a PRETTY GOOD JOB OF THAT, so I wasn’t too “disappointed” in the fact he kept “delaying” doing anything, but when I got the NASTY JUDGMENTAL LETTER FROM THIS N I let it “fly all over me” and I became ENRAGED at what a hypocritical JERK he was and OH, BOY! Did I want to WRITE HIM BACK and TELL HIM OFF!

But, Like with ALL Ns and Ps, there is no sense working yourself up, no sense letting what they say (however wrong) get to you, and I DID ALLOW this….so MY BAD on this, and I GET the consequences today—the mad last night and the FEELING LIKE I HAVE THE FLU TODAY….was it worth it? Nah, and my son C said “I told ya so, Ma.” (they dont’ get to do that very often so he took advantage of that! LOL) and then he went on and said, “He’s WILLFULLY BLIND” and C was right, that is a great description of the Rev. and his wife, both, WILLFULLY BLIND.

We frequently run up against people like that, they disbelieve our stories, they trivalize the dangers and damage to us, they just ‘DON’T GET IT” and aren’t interested in trying.

Yet, sometimes we keep on trying and keep on trying, thinking that if we just find THE RIGHT X to get it across to them, they will see. And the continually trying to get someone or some system to help us just uses our energy that would be better spent healing ourselves.

In retrospect, my son C was right from the start (he didnt’ think the Rev would believe us or do anything) and he said so, but I am pretty bull headed some times and I bulldozed my way to a stressful presentation with the Rev and his wife, and then when the devaluation letter came yesterday, I let it get to me….and i shouldn’t have, but the reaction and stress showed me that I did let it “get to me”—-so I hope I have learned a lesson here and will quit butting my head into stone walls.

There are lessons in success and also lessons in failure and sometimes just WALKING AWAY is the best of the options.

geminigirl

Dearest Oxy, Im sorry that the stress of yet another P,{the Minister} got to you yesterday. Years ago, by which time id divorced my Alcoholic, abusive first husband and was happily married to D. I used to go to this prayer group, held in the home of this old, retired pastor.I quite enjoyed the peace, the prayers, etc., but I couldnt understand why the Pastor kept on, week after week, praying for my ex, by this time wed been divorced for years, and he was living happily with another woman. Also, the pastor never, ever, prayed for my present husband!. Eventually I confronted him about it. “Oh, he said,”you are in an adulterous relationship with D., in the eyes of god you are still married to P. I have been praying for years that you leave him and go back to your true husband.” Can you believe it? No wonder I was feeling sick and confused, all this time hed been praying Id get back together with my ex! As well, a real female Judas in the group told me Id go to hell, living in an adulterous marriage, and the pastor said,”Thats right, dear!” talk about Pharisees! Needless to say, I quit that group, permanently, but still felt so wounded. I later found a wonderful book written by a christian solicitor,
explaining that, while god hates divorce, in some cases, such as wife beating, drunkenness, etc. God will haul you OUT of these dangerous situations! he explained how that so-called husband had long ago broken his marriage vows, so they no longer applied, and that God wanted us whole, safe, and well, not in danger from a drunken abusive husband! It was such a relief from all this condemnation when I read that book, but it sure was a lesson to me how cruel and judgemental so called Christians can be!geminigirl{{{HUGS}}}xxx

Elizabeth Conley

I’ve gotta say that this works for me. I walk away and use my energies on myself and the good people in my life. The N/S/P goes on to his/her next victim. That last part is kinda sad, but unless I’m willing to do time for murder, it’s inevitable.

Further, I find there’s value in simply not being “trolled”, on line and in real life. I’m becoming a lot more adept at identifying unproductive personal interactions.

Ox Drover

Thank you Gemini, Yea, I am not going to let the Pharisees of this world get between me and my peace (at least for long anyway) and I KNEW GOING IN this guy was VERY Narcissistic, though I don’t think he is a psychopath, just very sure of his own “righteousness” and his own “rightness” and that is the way my egg donor is. They think somehow that they have God’s final word on everything. LOL

Jesus’ parable about removing the log out of your own eye before you try to remove the speckk from your brother’s eye applies so well to these people who are so sure they can tell you how sinful and bad YOUR life is, while not seeing the problems in their own lives. (If they even admit that they have any problems in their lives.)

elizabeth, I agree, and I knew I was taking a chance when I went into this whole thing with him, hoping a bit that it was a chance to get my egg donor to stop with the money to the P son, but I would have always wondered if it would have worked (if I hadn’t at least TRIED) so I set myself up for this, I just didn’t handle it as well as I expected ME to handle it. LOL

I got from HIM what I expected (and son C predicted) but, and here is the RUB, I LET IT GET TO ME—the N-letter he sent—and I should have seen that one coming and not reacted to it, not let it trigger me. I AM THE ONE THAT LET GO OF MY PEACE, I did NOT have to let his letter do that. I had control over it, but I LET MY POWER GO…..so there is a lesson here for me as well.

Yes, he is judgmental, yes, he is an N, and yes, he is not what he should be as a minister—but that is why he and my egg donor were such “good friends”—-so WHY should I CARE what he thinks of me? DUH!?! It wasn’t like I was his admirer in the first place—I knew what he was from the get-go!

I’m the one that needs the “BOINK up’side the haid” for this one, I chose to go into an interaction with this jerk, knowing what he was, and then I got bent out of shape when he proved he was a jerk! So this BAD is on MY head folks, I did it to MYSELF, I am responsible for what stress got nailed to myself, because I set it up and I allowed it to happen.

I think we need, me especially, to realize that a BIG portion of the stresses we feel we have ALLOWED to happen to us. We can’t change what the jerks think, say or do, but we can and should change OUR internal and external REACTIONS to it.

Sure, I am more apt to be “triggered’ by someone like him and his “holier-than-thou’ stance, but I didn’t have to let it “get to me”—but I did and now I am resolving to do better in the future. I’ve been GOOD to myself all day—I’m still in my jammies from this morning, haven’t hit a lick today at anything productive around here just kicked back for the day.

Going to get up tomorrow and start life anew with a NEW RESOLVE to be good to myself, and enjoy life and not let some jerk like him stress me out. THE RAIN FINALLY QUIT after raining nearly every day this month so I will have a couple of nice sun-shinny days to get outside and enjoy it while I can.

NotYourDaddy

Has anyone here read the short sci-fi story from oh, 1956 called “The Country of the Kind”?

http://books.google.com/books?id=usYQ89se8CUC&pg=PA7&lpg=PA7&dq=%22country+of+the+kind%22&source=bl&ots=RU1m9l1f9v&sig=Fm2HiLGF9P7O_QEuMpKcQiJRqCs&hl=en&ei=P2G9SqiGMoPCsQP22vFL&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10

(hope that works – else look for the title in Google – the whole story is there in Google Books)

Synopsis: In a future materially very well off & non-violent society, a monster of a man is born – monster because he’s prone to violence. But this kind society cannot kill him; they just boycott him and ignore him (No Contact). In the end this drives him mad.

neveragain

Love the circular saw analogy!!! LOVE IT

Hecates path

Dear Oxy,
Thank you for this very validating post… I really needed to hear this — especially tonight. As you may have read in some of my previous posts my recovery gets “stuck” when it comes to my feelings about not pursuing legal action against my ex S for slander, defamation, false charges, and withholding my rightful property. And again, as you likely know I made that decision out of fear of retribution and the safety of my children and myself. Even though I KNOW without a doubt that it was the *right* decision for me and my family I have felt like I “let” him “win,” “get away”with it all, appear weak etc. Your post reminded me that my victory is that HE DID NOT DESTROY ME and I am stronger and more capable in my life BECAUSE he turned my world upside down and TRIED to destroy me. And I really needed that reminder tonight because the [email protected]#$% SOB is unexpectedly going to be at a function in which we may cross paths tomorrow… and because it is kid related my choices are limited. I hate feeling like my hands are tied but I have decided he can’t determine where I go or what I choose to do… and he certainly can’t ever make me talk to him or acknowledge his existance. My power is in the fact that he can not control me, right?! While he’ll likely get some sick pleasure from having his new wife in the vicinity, I willwalk through the room with my head held high with the knowledge that he did not destroy me. I was pretty damn wilted after his antics, but damnit I am blooming forth now!!!

Hoping that if I keep saying this and really believe it my anxiety about the fact that I KNOW HE must KNOW that I will be there and that is feeding his need for control over me and influencing his decision to be there… no proof but I just KNOW it…

Ya’ll can feel free to give me the ol’ LoveFraud words of wisdom and pep talk, now…

Thanks again Oxy for reminding me that my “victory” was the fact that he didn’t destroy me…

Hugs,
Hecate’s Path

Elizabeth Conley

Dear Oxdrover,

From what I’ve seen, Ns, Ps and Ss are drawn to ministry, particularly the pulpit. They’re particularly common in Evangelical, Baptist and “nondenominational” congregations. They revel in the lack of oversight.

You got off easy, cause you weren’t a member of his “flock”. Count your blessings, dearly beloved. Among them is that you’re not naive enough to join a flock of crazy-clucks!

skylar

Elizabeth,
please don’t leave out the CATHOLIC church in your “particulary common” group! We’ve got them coming out our ears.

Hecates,
ok, here’s your pep talk: wear gray, be boring and dull when/if you see him tomorrow. Remember, the entire LF gang is with you in spirit. All P’s want emotional reactions, so you will kill him when he doesn’t get it. Even when you didn’t go after him in court it was a victory because you didn’t give him your emotions. Keep all that in mind tomorrow.

Ox Drover

Dear Hecates Path,

Skylar says wear Gray and be BORING, well I say WEAR RED and be WA-AZM!!!! LOL

Keep your head high and realize that you ARE THE WINNER, that he did NOT destroy you, and that you are the QUEEN of the world and he is a stable boy, shoveling manure for the rest of his empty lfie!

GIVE HIM THE “POTTED PLANT” routine—treat him like he isa potted plant. You don’t notice th epotted plants in a room, and they can’t talk, so you wouldn’t speak to them, even if you thought you heard words coming out of them…you just IGNORE THEM!!!

You can do it, I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT! Oh, an dpicture me behind him with my skillet raised over his head!!! And my new hat with the big phesant feathered tail all down the back! TOWANDA!!!!!! The Love Fraud WAR CRY—you can’t hurt me cause you don’t exist!!!!

Hecates path

Skylar, thank you for your pep talk. I have to admit I am not good at wearing or being “grey” in any aspect of my life. I am as Oxy said, more akin to wearing Red and being “WA-ZAM.” See wearing grey and being unnoticeable in my mind would be akin to inaction – which is what makes mad about not being able to safely fry him in court. I’ve always been a do-er. I appreciate the reminder that the LF gang will be with me in spirit!

sstiles54

HP,
He is a big zero, a nothing. Ignore the SOB like Oxy says. You won’t be bothered by something that doesn’t even exist.

Oxy,
I am sorry your plan didn’t go as you had hoped. Judas Priest! People are stupid!! Makes you wonder if they all have to have a starring role in their very own “Fatal Attraction” movie to actually GET IT! Makes me so freakin’ mad! I am still waiting for the magistrate to impose the jail sentence on my xp for being in contempt of court since 07/2007. I even went so far as to write a letter to the Gov. of my state to see what could be done about the court dragging its feet. I get a response back today that if I wanted to submit a written request, I could get an executive clemency order started. Now, I may be from podunkville, but I took that to mean the Gov. thinks I want to have the a**hole excused. OMG…someone just shoot me…LOL

Hecates path

Oxy… you did it again! Once again you helped me see a truth about myself that I hadn’t realized… in this case it’s that I am a red wearing, “WA-ZAM” kinda girl and I don’t have to fade into the woodwork to enact the potted pot routine… and that the potted plant routine gets more mileage when I think of it as more than just ignoring him, but that I am ignoring him because he is not only not worth my attention, he is beneath it. I think you are saying in a way, remind him that this is one source of supply that others can have but he can’t ever have… he had it and he blew it, LOL.

Your support as always means the world to me… and the skillet and hat imagery you offered up are priceless. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your spunk and spirit with me when I was running a bit low… it’s like you’re the jumper cables giving me just enough of “charge” to get my own sparks going and I couldn’t be more thankful. Thanks for believing me when I need it most!

I’ll be chanting in my head “potted plant, potted plant” to the tune of “I think I can, I think I can” like the “little engine that could” and imagining skillets emblazoned with Towanda!

Hugs and thanks…HP

P.S: My crazy borderline mother reared her head tonight after a temper tantrum last weekend – which sucked up some of my “anti-crazy people” abilities… thank goodness friends are God’s way of making up for our families!!!!

skylar

HP,
I’m with you about not being good at not being noticed, but make sure you are noticed for the right things.

In this case, we are talking about narcissism: the pathological need for attention. That is HIS game, it is what he is and does. It is what makes him infantile. In this case, you can only one up him by NOT needing attention in the most dramatic and overt possible way. Creating a dramatic contrast between what you are and what he is with an emphasis on your maturity and his infantile nature will more serve your purposes, both in your psyche and in the external world.

So maybe boring is not the word of the day, but definitely show no emotion when he is around. Treat him as you would a bothersome little child, smile blandly and turn away.

Hecates path

Thanks sstiles 🙂 Your affirming words are appreciated. What a joke re: the letter you recieved! I have heard of more “sheer stupidity” stories and communication mix ups in the last week and they all seem to have their roots in unresolved situations from 2007/08 that should’ve been over a long time ago. Hope your ex gets his jail sentence soon… thanks again!

HP

super chic

I walked away, probably pisses him off more than anything else I could have done in this case, every situation is different. I figure I could have spent that money in years of therapy and never learned the lesson I learned from this one person. So it is a victory for me. I’m going to jump around my living room now and do high kicks (and probably hurt my back) 🙂

Hecates path

Skylar,
Don’t need or want his attention – just reminding him he can’t have my attention will be good enough. Treating him like a child and giving him a bland smile would still be too much to give him… he gets nothing from me. While my ex is an N, his S/P tendencies win out – he is more driven by a need for control than attention. Not being able to control me is what makes him insane… and that means the fact that his mere presence doesn’t mean a lick of spit to me means he isn’t in control of me… I am starting to see that the power is in him seeing that everybody but him gets my emotion! 🙂

skylar

good point Hecates!

SC,
True, that is one consolation about having been with a P, where else are you going to learn this lesson and learn it so well? We should all get degrees from Nsupply university.

I’d can’t do high kicks I think I already hurt my back just walking on the beach today.

Skippy

Wow, Oxy, what an ordeal. I’m so sorry you ended up having to cope with such a judgmental JERK. I was saying to a friend of mine the other day, who “gets it,” how amazing it is that when most people have the choice of believing the sociopath or the target, they side with the sociopath. So hard to take. So, I see where this post comes from on the heels of what you’ve just been through, and it is very good advice, as hard to swallow as it can be in specific circumstances. I can imagine how ill you must have felt after having been jerked around by this faux man of the cloth for so long and then to get his ugly, judgmental letter. At least, as you say, you’re not dealing with it 24/7. I know that sometimes I like to indulge in a fantasy that the S in my life would all of the sudden come to his senses, apologize, and then we could move on, on good footing. But I know, realistically speaking, that this is never going to happen. And, as you say, all we can do is not send good money after bad, so to speak, not try to “win.” Just get the hell away from these people and treat ourselves the way we wish they would have. The way we deserve.

Ugh, what a slimy creep.

So sorry 🙁

Very big hugs to you!

Ox Drover

Dear HP, Skippy, skylar, and S-Chic,

Thanks, guys! Your kind words are sweet to my “eyes.” That’s what LF is all about, helpign each other.

I still feel physically like “putty” today, no energy, all achy (no other symptoms of flu) so clinically I think it is still just a STRESS RESPONSE from becoming so ANGRY over the LETTER.

I’ve been thinking this morning and last evening, that “99.9%” of what they do to us is US DOING IT TO OURSELVES—-

Nothing in my universe changed one bit except I got a letter from a guy I don’t like anyway and I ALLOWED MYSELF to give HIS WORDS the power to make me angry—-and the sudden and high stress hormone jolt made me physically ILL.

Soooo-WHO DID THIS TO ME? WHO MADE ME ILL?

I DID IT TO MYSELF! I ALLOWED.

It ALL happened INSIDE MY HEAD—-nothing else changed in my world—the THOUGHTS inside my own head effected my physical land physiological body which released “fight or flight” hornomes in response to MY THOUGHTS.

SO, logically, what do I have to control to fix the PROBLEM?

MY THOUGHTS, MY REACTIONS…. or I ican continue to LET other people’s thoughts RULE MY WORLD.

In this case, at least, someone I never have liked, and never have respected, and have always thought he was a hypocrit!

I EXTRACTED DEFEAT FROM THE JAWS OF VICTORY!!!

So look at me! I am the POSTER CHILD of telling someone else how to “win” and I turn right around and SET MYSELF UP FOR A BIG DEFEAT!

So, what do I DO now?

After realizing what ACTUALLY happened: (I did this to myself)

I will:

1) ADMIT to myself I made a mistake in allowing all this to happen—check, did that!
2) FORGIVE myself because I am human and sometimes do DUMB things and make bad decisions–check, did that
3) RESOLVE to not do this in the future–check, doing that!
4) MAKE AMENDS to myself— check, doing that by being good to myself yesterday and today
5) GET BUSY WITH MY LIFE, loving myself and not wallowing in my own misery over this.

There are lessons we can learn in all this, but I think first we need to put the RESPONSIBILITY WHERE IT BELONGS….on ourselves for ALLOWING these INTRUSIVE THOUGHTS and FEELINGS to knock us down. WE DO have CONTROL over ourselves but we have to EXERCISE IT!

I didn’t exercise the POWER AND CONTROL I OWNED, I gave it to him.

Yep, he’s a slimy creep, there are LOTS of slimy creeps in this world and if I let it effect my thoughts, my health, my peace, my well-being every tiem I come into contact with one, I am going to be one MISERABLE PERSON FOREVER.

I choose NOT to ALLOW this to happen.

TOWANDA!!!!

kim frederick

TOWANDA, Oxy. I hope you get to feeling better, soon.

skylar

Pray the Devil back to hell.
That’s a documentary.
Here is an interview with a woman who found a strategy to accomplish the impossible.

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/233532/july-14-2009/leymah-gbowee

peterd

Great article, walking away upright is precisely what victory over the sociopath is. If you consider what sociopathic objectives are, they are not met when you simply walk away and ignore him or her. He/she loses by his/her own standards due to not being able to influence you/put you down permanently. Our brains are different so we do not perceive being ignored as loosing at all, but they do!

I had a doubtful pleasure of looking a sociopath straight in the eyes while holding his hand and subtly demonstrating how much he is indifferent to me. The effect was a sort o the effect described in Particia Evans book controlling people.
I could swear I saw a psychic tentacle disintegrating in front of my eyes, now after a careful analysis I believe those were my neural connections rearranging themselves inside my head.

The look that showed up on the sociopath face – invaluable. At that moment I realized that all I needed to do is to take charge over myself, this is all that is required for the sociopath to fail. No more no less.

BTW I just saw a movie Lifeboat by Alfred Hitchcock and there is a sociopathic character in that movie too. One of the characters at certain point nails it ” We let this Nazi bastard think for ourselves”. The movie has a happy ending after all, when the survivors realize that what they needed to do from the beginning is to trust themselves, and do their own thinking for themselves. This is precisely what we need to do. Do not let the nazi bastards think for yourself.

Ox Drover

Dear Peterd,

AMEN!!!!! thanks for brining up this movie and this way of looking at things.

We have let them “thinnk for us” for WAAAAAY too long! Let them GASLIGHT us and twist reality.

Today I feel stronger, mentally and physically now that I have realized that NOTHING IN MY LIFE CHANGED when I got lthat nasty letter EXCEPT MY ATTITUDE….and I AN exercise control over that if I WILL. I am NOT compelled to let HIS words change my views of my world.

There are times anger is justified and spurs us to ACTION, but the anger I felt at him, while “excusable” was NOT JUSTIFIABLE….because ACTION (writing him a nasty letter back) would NOT have changed a darn thing! (i.e. his opinion)

So my anger was both wasted and toxic to myself in this instance. There are some things I CANNOT change no matter what I do, and his attitude is one of those things, and I did not choose to EXERCISE my wisdom to not worry about what I can’t change, not to get angry over what I cannot change.

I can only do what I can do, and the things that I cannot do should not keep me “riled up” all the time.

I can’t change the way women are treated in Saudi Arabia, no matter how I protest, get on the news, or what I do, it will NOT make a bit of difference how hard I protest or how much of my resources I use to try to effect change. So, is that a REASON for me to be CONTINUALLY upset over the injustice in my mind of how those women are treated?

Of course not, but it is somewhat more difficult to “see” that my anger at the Rev isn’t going to do me any more good or him any more change than me being angry at how women in Saudi are treated.

I need to reserve my strength and my justifiable anger for things I CAN EFFECT CHANGE IN. For the rest of the things in this world that I can’t change, I need to let go of them and focus my energy where I can make a difference.

ErinBrock

OXY:
How you reacted was a combination of emotional and physical responses.
The emotional side you can control, but most of the time the physical responses is automatic. The chemicals the anxiety release are not physically controlled by us.
Do NOT be hard on yourself…….
You know the truth, it was a big lesson for you……you know this and felt it…..and will continue to learn from it. You learn so much about yourself by every step you take in life!
Human nature tells us we must have faith in others……you saw an ‘opening’ and went for it…..hoping for the outcome that would benefit you and your boys and keep you safe.
If we don’t try, we will always lose! 100% of the time……
SO keep on trucken baby!
I bet you will do it again, if another person comes into your life that may be able to help……AND THAT”S A GOOD THING!
Feel better, allow yourself to absorb this all and take the break your body is calling for……that’s it.
Your the bomb girl!!!
XXOO
EB

Ox Drover

Dear Erin,

I AM feeling much better, went outside while ago and walked in the sunshine (it’s windy but no rain til next thursday) and picked my green bean seeds to bring in and dry, and picked a few golf ball sized tomatoes and looked over the rest of what passes for a garden this time of year. But just that bit of going outside was theraputic. smelled the basil (oh, the smell is so strong and wonderful when it is green!)

Yea, I don’t regret that I TRIED it might have worked and if it would have it would have been a good thing, and over all i really didn’t lose too much, a couple of days of high emotions and a bit of stress, but shoot, I have wasted more than that on things with less chance of success!

In the past I have tried and “lost” like when I took her to court, but the Trojan Horse got back into her house when she lied to me, but you know, if that BAD thing had not happened, the GOOD thing of my DIL and the TH-P getting arrested probably wouldn’t have happened, so I TRUST THERE IS A BETTER THING DOWN THE ROAD, I JUST DON’T SEE IT YET!

I’m not beating myself up any more, I took a calculated risk and I lost, BUT I still should NOT have OVER REACTED to the nasty self-serving judgmental letter from the N-minister. I just let my anger run away with me, and I do have control over that if I will exercise it. I don’t give a flipping rat’s behind what he thinks of me, actually I never have, I never liked him from 30+ years ago when I met him the first time when he became minister at a small church I attended back then. In fact, I moved churches because of him, I couldn’t let myself listen to him pontificate Sunday after Sunday from the pulpit.

Back in those days my then husband and I tried to help a young woman who was 8 1/2 months preg with 1 or 2 toddlers, I can’t rememeber which, but anyway, my husband and I drove our truck and trailer to Illinois to get her stuff out of storage for her (she had left her husband for abuse) and when I got her stuff back the church helped her some too, but eventually after the baby was born she took ehr husband back in.

The night I went over the the Rev’s house and was talking to him and his wife, she mentioned the woman, I had totally forgotten about it (35+ yrs ago) and she mentioned that “the cops said that he might have hurt us, we shouldn’t have gotten involved.” (or words to that effect!)

I remember being disappointed at the time that the woman went back, and at that time I didn’t know diddly about DV….but that night at the Rev’s house I realized that his wife is just like him as far as this “don’t put yourself out to help anyone” attitude is concerned.

Trying to help someone is not a crime, and if you do something for someone who is injured or whatever, sort of like the Good Samaritain in the Bible story, they may NOT benefit from it immediately, or they may never benefit from it, but YOU have still done the right thing.

Nothing was said in teh Bible story about WHY the man was lying in the ditch injured, had he been out with a bunch of guys drinking and they beat him up, or had he tried to rob some people and they beat him up? The only thing was that the priest walked on by, didn’t want to get his hands dirty and had no compassion on the man, or thought the man might “hurt” him, or whatever the reason he had no compassion on this man in the ditch…but the Samaritain, who was a “lower caste,” looked down on by the Jews who had passed the man by, stopped and had compassion for the man because he was INJURED. Period. did the best he could for the man to fix him up immediately and left some money with the inkeeper to help him after he was gone.

I’ve tried to help lots of people in my life, but I have also had people in my life, even strangers, who were there for me when i myself needed help. I will continue to have compassion on people and continue to try to help them in any reasonable way I can. If they don’t take advantage of that help, that is ON them NOT me. I dont’ remember Jesus saying that we should help others if they are “deserving” or that we shouldn’t try unless we know for sure that they will take advantage of that help….sometimes people don’t take advantage of an opportunity that is presented to them, DV is a prime example, and we all know why these (mostly women) people return to the abuser, but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do the best we can to help them. To support them. That’s what LF does, and there is not, I am sure a 110% “success” rate here, but we still try.

I’m no “Pollyanna” I know that some people are “professional victims” or that they are looking to take advantage of “help” offered to them, but at the same time, I usually figure out if it fairly quickly if they are taking advantage of an offered hand up, rather than just seeking a “hand out”—I pretty quickly get the idea and at that point, try not to enable them. Wish I had applied the same STANDARDS to my family sooner! LOL

But even when my attempts at “helping” someone weren’t successful in light of them taking lasting advantage of it, I still think I DID THE RIGHT THING. It is just a shame to me that someone who presents themselves as a Christian minister has so little compassion for those people who need compassion.

ErinBrock

Society prefers the don’t ask – don’t tell policy!

Keep on being YOU…..you are the ‘winner’ here!

recovering

Ox Drover — I agree wholeheartedly with what you wrote:
“Sometimes, it is better to walk away a “loser” but still intact, and with your head held high, using the energy and resources you have left to focus on healing yourself, on recovering what you have lost in terms of finances and strength, and take care of yourself.”

A “viable victory” indeed.

I’m finding that the less need I have to “win” with someone who’s spewing non-sense, the more intact I feel from the simple act of disengaging.

recovering

peterd, I too am familiar with Patricia Evans’ book, Controlling People. Like you, I continue to realize that all I need to do is to take charge of myself rather than surrender to my ex-N’s efforts to manipulate my emotions — no more, no less. I’m finding that with more practice of emotional autonomy and behavioral self-control, other things external to me eventually have less impact on my well-being.

skylar

I put it on my list Kim. Thanks.

The book looks like it might be helpful in dealing with some of the narcissists in my life – who are not trying to kill me.
I wish they would write one called: What to do when your lover is a demon that hates women and wants to kill you and has convinced the police that you should die too.

hmm…catchy title, I should write it. 🙂

kim frederick

…and even though you’ve decided to go no contact, he takes the window unit out and is standing in your living room when you get home from work. He’s taken parts off of your car so it won’t work, told all your mutual friends that you’re a raging maniac, and brings his new target over one day, and brings a birthday card the next ( the first time in 7 years he rememberd it…..Hummm. Who would like to contibute to this work in progress?

skylar

I’ve been watching my P parents’ behavior, since I’ve come to live here. And I’m remembering all kinds of stuff from my childhood. Stuff they did and stuff that I felt. I think God meant for this to happen, so that I had to come live here with the people who were the origin of my hell. If this hadn’t happened with the eXP, I would have moved on, not knowing and still confused.

Just another thought about how everything happens for a reason.

skylar

You are so much fun Kim. lets see…
…and that’s because, taking your life wouldn’t be enough, he must also have your soul, and your soul must go to hell to await his arrival along with the entourage of minions that he recruited to send you into the depths of despair because you can no longer distinguish lies from reality and you think you are not lovable because all the people you know seem to hate you, but as you die by your own hand, you must also pity him, for he will be without you to pick out his clothes for your funeral, how selfish of you to take your own life like that…

kim frederick

And besides, there’s Nascar, and football, how dare you…You did this on purpose….And now He has to wear black, and hasn’t he always told you how he hates black; how it washes out his complection, and damn it who’s gonna feed the cat?

skylar

that’s the best laugh I’ve had all day, no, all week, Kim. Thanks.

JLP0108

This article and all of the comments have been so great to read, and so very helpful! How STRONG you are OxDrover! I know all too well how hard it is to apply, in real life, what we know so well! Even when we are EXPERTS in something! The strength that you were able to show with how you chose to deal with your real life situation shows that you truly can do this – walk away in victory. Knowing this gives me hope that I, too, might be able to do it! You are an incredible inspriation! Thank you!

Tilly

Everyone: re Kim fredericks comments to me:
” A lot of people here have taken a good deal of time to explain to you what the article is trying to say. If you’ve done thaqt much work on yourself you should get it. Getting defensive and then spewing vile sarcasm and insults at people is one way of proving the very point of the article.”
I am still reeling from this whole conversation between Jill smith and kim frederick about me.

blueskies

Hey Tilly, nice to hear from you.xxx DONT REEL anymore. STICK a pin in it! Draw a line under it! Get back to healing!

You are truly supported and loved here.xx

I think it’s all good and proper for us all to express our opinions on here but we do have to be mindful that things can be read wrong or mis-construed.

I also think its fine (i am talking about me) if I come on here and act up (for any number of valid reasonsxx) that another might come in and say WOAH there lady, you have that all wrong!x

I dont know if you remember, but some time ago now, I was in a really hurt and angry place and I for some reason got it into my head that I was being ‘ignored’ on here…and flounced off…. now that whole behaviour was down to how I was feeling, totally understandable…BUT WRONG! (it was also a little selfabsoprbed methinks) I was comforted by a number of members that I WAS NOT BEING IGNORED, and I had to take that on board and adjust my way of thinking…because it was just plain NOT the case. xx

I dont wish for ANYONE to encourage my misconceptions and bad behaviour when it crops up and I thank my lucky stars that there are people out there who will say…STOP, youre looking at this all wrong.x when this happens it is a godsend, another oppourtunity to learn and grow and be a better me!

I think this started form your expression that an article may have been blaming the victims of S/P’s and i feel that you felt personally affronted by that and expressed it.(which IS finexxxx) After others came back and comforted you, you still felt hurt by it (this is my own conjecture boink me if I am wrong) and then maybe it looked like you werent ‘listening’ to some people and of course when we feel not listened to it pisses us off! Crazyness ensues!!x

SO GLAD YOU”VE COME BACK TILLY!xxxxxxxxxxxxx

I hope everyone here can chalk this up to experience and learn whatever they need to learn from it, ‘kiss and make up’ and get on with the talking healing!xxx
with MUCH love
Bluexxxx

blueskies

Oxy you rock!xxx Thankyou so much for sharing all of your experiences and wisdom with us. xx Your crappy experience with the Misinster and how you processed it is SUCH a great ‘story’ for us all to hear. It helps us all to see that even after years of work we can still get sucked into the malstrom (because we cannot control external factors), BUT we can also get ourselves right back out again with a little self reflection, re-grouping and calmness… these are the tools we all need. You rock missus.xxx

kim frederick

To Tilly and all, I apologize for being B—-y. I guess we all behave badly, sometimes. I don’t want to alienate anybody, and I hate feeling alienated myself. Tilly, I hope you’re feeling better, now. Yes blueskies, lets all get back to the matter of healing.

Tilly

Kimfrederick and jillsmith:
RE: your posts on : “After the sociopath is gone: Our thoughts become our reality”.
Please do not post TO ME or ABOUT me ever again.

blueskies

I was just mulling all this over, and I wanted to say, sometimes when things blow up, it is AN EXCELLENT oppourtunity to really look at why it happend and WHY we felt so hurt and really confront it and deal with it.

It’s a bit like my trusty ‘broken car analogy’ (the one where I describe myself as put-putting along for years held together with sticky tape and chewing gum) you can go for years with…lets say a leaky valve…and never know until it blows and the red light comes on. (this seems like a calamity because now the car wont work, but it is actually a great opportunity to look at it and fix it properly.(am I gettin’ random enough for you guys at this point)xxx So Tilly, IMHO, this is not the time to cut yourself off (especially from anyone one here, personally I need all the support I can get so I ‘aint narrowing it down!), the interactions that were strained on here were maybe the ‘red light flashing’, the best way to get a positive out of this is to look at the root cause of the upset for YOU and deal with it.xxxx

Ox Drover

Everyone, and this includes Tilly,

Sometimes, in our pain we “act out”—STRIKE OUT. I have done it, so I am not “throwing rocks” at someone for doing something I have DONE.

This blog is only good if it is supportive, but in being supportive, we must ALSO TELL THE TRUTH. Sometimes the truth is that we don’t always WANT TO SEE THE TRUTH.

Tilly, I told you (along with the others) at the time you were throwing your “tantrum” because you were (a) stressed out at the time and (b) “STRIKING out” and (c) you were reading something into the blog article THAT WAS NOT THERE.

Now before you get angry at me too and quit reading, I’m going to tell you a story.

I was in therapy years ago after my divorce, and the therapist gave me a bookk to take home and read between sessions. I did. I had been trying to “prove a point” (in other words I was trying to say she was wrong and I was right) so I took the book home and read it, and BINGO, i found the place that said EXACTLY WHAT I HAD BEEN TRYING TO TELL HER.

I was SOOOO halppy and I went back to therapy next week walking proud as a peacock because I WAS RIGHT AND SHE WAS WRONG. I told her that, and then she very calmly asked me to READ it ALOUD.

I very confidently did—-and guess what! I HAD HALUCINATED WORDS ON A PAGE because I wanted it to say what I thought. The book actually said the OPPOSITE of what I had wanted it to say. I WAS WRONG. But I wanted so toBELIEVE it said what I wanted it to say, I twisted it in my mind.

TILLY, there is NO ONE here who wishes you ill, or who I think has mistreated you in any way. You were angry at the time, and they didn’t tell you anything I didn’t tell you. NONE of those articles BLAMED the VICTIM, but you were FEELING blamed, I think, and so you READ IT THAT WAY—

“FRIENDS don’t let friends drive drunk” is a saying over here, because you don’t want your friends doing something that hurts themselves. And in my opinion, LF FRIENDS don’t let LF FRIENDS go off on a “Drive” down the WRONG ROAD EITHER.

You were angry at the time and STRIKING OUT, in a post to me after I had posted to you, (I think it was) you went off on how you had a “right” to blow off because you were stressed and mad.

Tilly if there is anyplace in the world lwhere people care about you, I think jyou would know by NOW it is HERE, and this is a good place to VENT, throw a FIT or “point the gun” but like I told you before, PLEASE DON’T POINT IT AT US.

You refusing to “talk” to certain people here indicates that you “don’t like” them or think they treated you badly, but they said the same things to you that I did, that you were NOT getting what the articles were saying. I still believe you weren’t because you I think were doing the same thing I was when I read that book. I was angry, I was “righteous” and I was PROJECTING. I think you are too.

Tilly, every one gets stressed and angry at times, and maybe says something that isn’t true (not lies, just mistaken) but that’s what LF is about is FRIENDS, people who care, being good enough to point those things out.

Tilly, lplease think about all this and get over your anger at anyone here. You are not the ONLY person here who NEEDS TO HEAL, and we ALL need to treat each other with respect and with LOVE—and that “love” is in the sense of respect, caring, and good intentions. The rare psychopath that comes here soon showes themselves up and goes away. So please think about your anger, Tilly. This is a good opportunity for growth and we don’t grow much while we are pithed off. ((((Hugs))))) and my prayers, Love oxy

neveragain

Hi everyone,

I already posted this somewhere, but let me try again in another way. I have done lots of writing, but it is not one of my strengths. For published writing, I’ve needed lots of copy editing. I have learned that even if ONE person misinterprets my writing and speaks out about it, there are probably at least another 100 who thought the same thing but didn’t speak out.

the truth is that part of the pain of being with a P is that we DO get into self blame. We DO have that chip on our shoulder. Many of us. Understandably so! So do many women who are physically raped.

The book “Emotional Rape” states “emotional rape victims have a two-fold responsibility to themselves: to resist the NATURAL tendency toward self-blame, and to not unquestioningly accept the critical judgments of others.”

He goes on to say “Certainly there is a time and place for a victim to ponder on how what happened could possibly have been prevented, but there is also an important difference between health self-examination and unhealthy, counterproductive self-blame”.

He also states “When someone commits an evil act against you, you are the victim, not the assailant nor co-assailant. Don’t take seriously anyone who suggests otherwise. What they are saying will endanger rather than aid your eventual recovery.”

So if you were walking down a dark alley in the worst part of town in a string bikini at 3 AM and got physically raped, YOU ARE A VICTIM. A crime was committed. If there had not been a bad man, you could have done what you did and NOT GOT HURT.

What some do, is focus on what the woman was wearing, where she was walking, and what time of night and say she attracted that into her life.

I think the healthier thing to do is to first focus on the fact that she got raped, and give aid and comfort and try to do something to bring the criminal to justice, if possible.

Then, we may want to have a talk about it is too bad the world is so evil that it is not really safe for a woman to go walking there at night….and to realize also that the string bikini has NOTHING to do with it. It looks like it does from a NORMAL mind, but since rapists are all about power, not sex, the only thing the bikini has to do with it, was it made it clear she was unarmed.

So it wise to remember that our choice of words in dealing with this whole topic is very tricky in the printed format.

Do we speak of “healing”, of “recovery” of “learning additional tools to try to protect ourselves from evil”, etc. All the words can mean different things to different people.

I think it is wise to be alert to the fact that emotional rape victims, p victims, parental victims…ARE VICTIMS. Dr. Phil likes to call some “a victim, but a victim who volunteered” But that is pretty harsh. WHY did they volunteer? Did they REALLY sign up for what they got? Isn’t that again putting the focus on the victim, not on the BAD GUY???!!!!

Can we benefit from learning about trauma bond? About trauma repetition? Yes, but in a very loving environment that says this has to do with how the brain is wired, etc… AND REMEMBER, if there were no bad guys in the world NONE OF THIS WOULD BE A PROBLEM. My husband has known from almost day one that he could bring me to a fetal position with a few well chose words….but he has never done so…no matter how much I invited trauma repetition….BECAUSE HE IS NOT A BAD GUY.

I have felt there is too much blame the victim. I do think authors have to be SUPER careful how they word things, knowing the sensitivities of emotional rape victims and their tendency to blame themselves.

So it is hard to say …..here is what you can do NOW to protect yourself, without implying “so it is your fault that this happened the first time”. IT IS NOT. NO BAD GUY=NO PROBLEM. We MUST always remember that.

I have taken self-defense courses….not because it is my fault that a stranger entered a home and raped me when I was 12. But because I now realize it CAN happen, there ARE bad guys, and I need to learn to protect myself, despite my “weaknesses” like weaker upper arm strength compared to a man, my tendency to black out if someone chokes me for 10 seconds…..

Not all our “weaknesses” are really weaknesses. We can only work out so much,learn so many moves, get our brains ready to be willing to HURT someone. But we still might get raped again.

Because there are bad guys out there. Not because we are weak.

kim frederick

J AH, your point is well taken. I tried to make myself clear, but maybe missed the mark. My point is simply this: If you continue to believe and act on the belief that you can walk down that dark ally at 3 AM in that string bikini, and emerge unscathed, if you stubbornly believe that because you were the victim in that isolated incident, you can continue doing, being, acting in exactly the same way you did before, you might find yourself victimized again. I understand that we are not to blame…WE WEREN’T THE BAD GUY.

One definition for insanity is: doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. I, for one, have had at least three of these relationshits in my life, and I’ve wasted, oh let’s see, about 35 of my 50 years on them, complete with the turmoil, the pain, the anger, the frustration, the confusion, the hopeless, helplessness of it, and I can tell you, I never thought I had anything to do with it. Now I know my low self-esteem, my need for excitement, my obsessive personality, my desire to be right, my stubborn insistance of having it my way has definatly contributed to my condition. I want to address these issues in myself so I never repeat the
pattern.
That is just where I’m at. I’m not trying to assign blame to anyone else. It takes what it takes, and maybe self evaluation isn’t necisary for everyone. But I think it is for me Peace, everybody.

blueskies

Beautiful powerful posts JAH and Kim:)x Thanks for sharing your thoughts.x

Send this to a friend