Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Mother gives pastor permission to pastor to use corporeal punishment on 12 year old


Also read comments about it on Pam's House Blend

Pastor was NOT punished. NO jail time. Fuk. So much for human decency.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

When Jerry Falwell died...

Chris Crain said: "The first thing that came to mind was something the first-ever female president of my college alumni association once told me. Talking about the notoriously slow pace of progress on our alma mater's board of trustees, she said, 'What we need for some real change is a few good funerals.' Indeed."

Perhaps a socially-denied truth with regard to all oppressors, including toxic parents...

What I wish people would say if they can't sympathize

If someone did not want to lend a sympathetic or empathetic ear to the adult child of a toxic parent, I would suggest saying this:

"I'm sorry for your pain, but I need focus on people worse off (than you)."

I'm wondering if the words "than you" should be taken off, but I don't want to make too many rules on how people should speak. It's hard enough to expect that many won't spit out "grow up" or "get a job" (even though finding employment and financial independence is a necessary part of freeing yourself from toxic parents).

I sent out four resumes to my temp agency. But hoping to be a scientific research assistant. First and foremost, I need a house after my lease ends!

Emails, craigslist, etc are my friends...who are yours?

Monday, March 16, 2009

A Bob Dylan verse that wise parents should heed...

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'

(From song "The Times They Are A-Changin")

Google search: Wow, I'm not alone

This is my second post on the blog I just started. My mother left earlier today, so had a comforting walk outside to relax. I'm back in my (peaceful) house with my computer, and Googled to find this:

"Divorcing your toxic parents"

Many good comments on that post. Here's an awesome one:

"After reading the book during 5 years in therapy I had a spiritual decision to make. If I didn't cut all ties with my parents I would self destruct. The depth of the parent connection is commonly insidious. I suspect similar enough to warrant a website with open commentary for so many.

"At 40, I've never been more convinced that although my parents are wealthy, retired and happier than ever- they used children to get there. Dad 19 and Mom 14 when pregnancy had to be dealt with in 1950's

"Kids gave them reason to justify their emotional addictions. Their sobriety based on fear was so indestructible that their pure basic instinct was impressive. Spotty history in late 1950's America led to an accidental pregnancy. The right thing to do was marry, clean up Dad's drinking and accept responsibility for getting a girl pregnant. 50 years later it yielded 3 kids that would rather not be around them, but because two of their offspring have 14 children and one sexually abused gay son that is disowned and denied. It hurts to hear sisters, both mothers, relay the latest explosion and disgust from the last visit to Grandma and Grandpa.

"I don't feel bad for my parents discomfort. When I do, nausea and desire to avoid interaction paralyzes me.

"My therapist discourages my guilt plus Toxic Parents [the book] shows me reality. No child deserved what happened to me. While so many suffer in the world, and have real gripes we see on the news, I have my own long boring nightmare of daily amputation of my person, feelings, strength, will, and parental trust. 18 years of that gives me the right to be heard. Not in a context of who got worse but in context of singular experiences I'd trade with those who had worse.

"My parents combination of skill and determination was so codependent that one could only characterize them as a team. Mom the General, Dad the XO. Mom drove Dad, Dad worshipped Mom. Dad has the emotional capacity of age 10. Nearly 70 now, his world was saved by a 14 year old girl he knocked up by accident. She is his world.

"Oh 70 doesn't buy absolution from the past. He will strike, hit, beat, intimidate and scare anyone who comes close. If he approves of you and senses no threat you may enter the presence of his Queen. Their public surroundings were simply convenient tools. Kids were props on a set. Such feelings from children are very common from my interactions.

"I hope someday that parents must pass curriculum tests. Procreation without education is a criminal. Having babies you cannot afford is bad. Having babies you cannot teach and nurture without expecting anything but to protect and land your retirement should be outlawed. Regardless of money, toys, provisions and affluence, if you beat your kids and turn a blind eye to sexual abuse while building wealth for your retirement and community prestige you are a failure.

"When courageous kids speak up about child sexual abuse, parents are usually infuriated, outraged and vocal in defense of their own. They demand retribution and action against the perpetrator. How about a 34 yr old priest violating a 10 year old? Couldn't wealthy community leaders see their own kid just got scarred and horrified for life?

"I wasn't so lucky. I spoke up after many years, even to sue the Bishop for moving a priest 8 times in 10 years for the same complaint with other children.

"My parents said Shut Up. Don't Bring It Up Again. We Have No Knowledge. Kids Don't Understand. Don't Tarnish Our Name. Don't Speak About Shame. We Will Not Support You. How Could You Do This To Us?

"What Toxic Parents did for me is immeasurable. I don't have to forgive, excuse, or even understand my parents point. They are indeed independent. As much as I am blessed with education, wealth, spirituality and purpose to love, serve and give to others, my parents were simply a genetic accident. Probability, luck and statistics prove there's very few winners and a whole lot of losers.

"You do not have to be laudatory for their performance. They live affluence. Never forgive or rationalize abuse. Accountability is expected of everyone under the law. Wealthy or poor parents deserve no rewards for fear, intimidation, ignorance, ego and status in trade for children. Whether you are their hope, their legacy or their burden, your life is your own.

"The price of owning your reality may involved complete detachment.
One might conclude my comments as resentment. I assure everyone that I have sought counsel at professional levels.

"My psychiatrist discourages any further interaction with my parents including their funerals. My 4 year therapist also turned me on to the book. My doctors isolate specific medical conditions that improved once I made a decision. We're talking about antidepressants, surgery, physical therapy and group interaction. We're talking heart conditions, diabetes, blood pressure and the silent killer of hypertension. Healthwise I'm a miracle that shouldn't be sober, walking, talking or writing.

"All of these conditions improved dramatically in just a few years time after I stopped any interaction with my parents. Just as flying a plane, take offs are optional, landings are mandatory. So it's your job to land your plane. Sorry, You didn't choose the takeoff. Detachment is like solo flying. This part you do alone. Existentially, you were always alone. Put these parents in their place for once and you will be relieved. Parents have a child fetish and rarely goes well even if they have money, power and convenient distractions like religion, careers and home improvement ideas.

"At 40, I play music, exercise, write, enjoy my own small business that works. I submit that I'm just as fine a specimen of manhood that anyone could hope to meet. I base my value on integrity, which is doing what you say, and not doing what you've committed not to do. I have recreated a family system complete with mentors, friends and fellowship of service. I won't kid anyone that I've been uniquely rewarded and gifted. However none of it ever came until I read this book along with therapy.

"Non-forgiveness is an option. Never expect resolution or satisfaction. Instead, Rebuild your new family. Choose friends, mentors, and leaders as fine replacements. Detachment can make life easier. It's a tool few have found and used."

- Bobby D, Austin Texas

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Introductions, concepts, and beginnings of a fight

What is a "toxic parent"?

Susan Forward's book, "Toxic Parents: How to Overcome Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaim Your Life" was a godsend to me. She defines it in her book, but I add some details.

"Toxic" could simply be another name for abusive, except that I think society has a narrow view of what an abusive parent looks like. To them, an "abusive" parent is someone defined by three myths:

Myth 1: Abusive parents are horrible people that are easy to spot. Wrong. Abusive parents are usually only abusive when alone with their kids, including adult kids. In front of others, they are usually as nice, professional, and "normal" as anyone. The parents' friends, co-workers, an associates will likely view the parents as "wonderful" or "saints" (common for parents who are doctors). If we kids think about telling these people the truth, we feel little reason for them to believe us...and they might try to "out" us by telling the parent what we told, in the hope of "reconciling us" (which is another fallacy)

Myth 2: Abusive parents are always intentionally cruel to their children. If a parent doesn't mean it, its not abusive. Wrong. Parents can be cruel without intending to be. How? Parents who have exaggerated, distorted beliefs about the dangers of sex may try to stop their children from ever dating, or in some cases, masturbating. And when the kids do date, have sexual relationships, they often hide it from their parents. This is especially true in non-Western immigrant parents (South Asian, Asian, Middle Eastern, etc) who come from cultures where pre-marital sex is condemned.

Myth 3: If a parent is abusive, one can call the police and get rid of them. End of story. I wish. I really do. But the truth is that the only witnesses of these crimes are the victims (as is the case for any domestic abuse). So small children are expected to recognize that their mommy and daddy are criminals and phone the cops? No, they grow up with it, and they learn to accept it. It is the family way, even if they learn the concept of abusive homes ("that happens to them, not us").

Also, as far as I know, the law does not criminilize parents for having extreme beliefs, like hatred for pre-marital sex or thinking that "no good jobs" come from a field that the parent knows nothing about. Ignorance is ignorant, it's scientifically falsifiable, but it's not illegal.

So no one is going to challenge them.

What do we do?

I'm so happy to be done with the 101, because I'm suffering tonight. My mother is thankfully leaving tomorrow, and my strength is needed for things like job searches and apartment hunts.

The truth is that, inspite of all the garbage we are told, these parents do not change by "talking it out". You do not talk someone out of their nature. And its iditiotic to argue that they are this way because we didn't say the right words. They are this way because of the decades of upbringing and neurophysiology that took place before we were born. Good parents can change their views, but if their doing the same shit when your 25 that they were doing when you were 5, 10, 15, 18, 22...then it's fair to say that that is who they are.

Of course accepting your parents nature does not require you to forgive them. Forgiveness should be earned for changing bad bevaiour and mindsets. It should not be obligatorilly given. There is NOTHING wrong with you for refusing to forgive your parents. You don't have "issues", you have values, specifically the value that abuse in your own home is unacceptable, even if you must accept the fact that they will never change. There will be no "healing" if you push yourself to forgive parents who continue to torture and mistreat you, with no reform in sight.

Stop blaming yourself for hating them. Anyone who treats you this way, ESPECIALLY your own parents, does not deserve forgiveness unless they realize the cruelty of their actions and make real attampts to change them. Sadly, this is unlikely to happen.

Which is why you must stop trying to "talk" with them and start trying to talk with yourself, for the purpose of surviving. But ultimately for the purpose of thriving and learning the mental will to resist their ugly control. They are monsters, but YOU are a warrior. Follow the path of self-control of your mind, of ACCURATELY weighing the pros and cons of decisions, INSTEAD of the bigoted, ignorant, prejudiced ideas your parents want you to believe. Learn to tell the difference between a real worry and an ignorant worry (and expect both such worries to come out of the same mouth of the parent. Be on guard to tell shit from reason as your parents will indiscriminately speak both in the same breath.)

Financial independence is key, but you must also learn psychological independence. And you may have to practice the psychology first, because this economy means many more sons and daughters will be pushed to rely on their parents for money. Keep searching and keep striving. You don't have to settle for menial jobs, at least not in the long term.

I pray (though I'm an atheist) that this blog is the start of something beyond hope. We must stay strong and find the strength in ourselves and each other, especially when unsympathetic listeners will tell us to "grow up". We're ALL growing up, and that process is not linear. Backwards, forwards, up, down, zig zag, experiment, make as you go crossed with look before you leap. That is the maturation process for EVERYONE, even the shitheads who think they know it all.

There are no police, no knights, no lobby groups (yet), and no stimulus package...As our President once said:

"We are the change we have been waiting for."