Forum Replies Created
September 10, 2016 at 3:51 pm #114846
Hi, Xenopus Tex.
Thank you for your reply.
Your analogy frames my quandary in different circumstances. I do not think that Mother Teresa’s—pardon me, Saint Teresa of Calcutta’s—struggle with (what I understand she perceived to be) an absence or abandonment of her God in her life is analogous to life-saving technology, or even something that could be considered to be “soul”-saving. From what I can tell, she did not want her struggles with that absence to be known by others because she did not want those private struggles to be the impetus, however slight they may have been, for someone else to question his or her own faith.
I also understand that her letters were functionally her Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation, a.k.a. Confession, which means that they were subject to the Seal of Confessional, under which it is the duty of the priest who hears the confession not to reveal what he heard. I suggest that the recipient of the letters broke the Seal of Confessional by revealing the letters to others, even if it was to his superior.
My quandary may indeed be wholly irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, especially considering that I am not a person of faith, but I still feel an ethical obligation to honor her wishes.
Thank you for your thoughts.
CMISeptember 9, 2016 at 8:41 pm #114795
The sympathy and empathy I feel for you and your situation, on many levels, made your post very hard for me to read.
For me to say that I am so very sorry for the terrible abuse you have suffered and endured for so long is wholly inconsequential in the face of all that you have been through. Nonetheless, I am sorry that you have suffered so much.
First, I want to be clear and say that I am not an expert on any psychological disease or issue, and that I am in no way a professional, or even an aspiring amateur, in the fields of Psychology or Psychiatry. The thoughts I offer below are based only on my own personal experiences, and the research I have done to better understand those experiences.
Many things you wrote suggest to me that your wife has a personality disorder, or a combination of personality disorders, possibly borderline personality disorder (BPD), narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), or anti-social personality disorder (APD). From what I have read, it is possible for people to have a double diagnosis of more than one personality disorder.
Other psychiatric disorders can co-occur (can be comorbid) with personality disorders, too, such as: affective disorders (depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder) substance abuse disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression, bulimia nervosa, etc.
I urge you to do the research on these disorders, particularly BPD and NPD. There is plenty of information freely available on the Internet (including support websites and forums) and much more detailed information available in books that you can purchase. I think many of your questions about why she behaves that way will begin to be answered.
I also very strongly urge and encourage you to explore the possibility of you finding—as Anita so rightly defines—“a competent, empathetic psychotherapist” to help you better (and eventually fully) understand and effectively process what you have been through and suffered. From what I have read, it is very common for folks to greatly benefit from therapy when decompressing from relationships (particularly long-term relationships) with people who have personality disorders. I urge you to consider finding a therapist not only because it has been of benefit to others, but also because of the “dark disturbing thoughts,” the “overwhelming feelings and emotions,” you feel on a “daily basis,” the “constant anxiety” and “surges of adrenaline” and “body aches” you are experiencing. I fear for your short-term and most definitely for your long-term well-being.
Please empower yourself with research and knowledge, and particularly with the professional help of someone who is knowledgeable in the things with which you are dealing. I suggest that by doing so you will take the first steps to facilitate your extraction from the relationship, and ultimately recovering from what you have endured.
For what it may be worth, I believe that you CAN extract yourself from this, that you CAN recover, and that you CAN have a much, much, MUCH happier life afterward.
I hope the very best for you.
CMISeptember 7, 2016 at 10:09 am #114500
I’m so sorry for your loss of your daughter. I can’t even begin to imagine how terrible that must feel.
Having had the experience of being in a relationship with someone who has a PD, I know how much of a mind and emotion-twisting thing that is.
Forgive me if I seem dense in asking this question, but have you talked with your therapist about your feelings regarding lack of trust? It sounds like something with which he or she could help you get to the bottom of and resolve.
CMISeptember 7, 2016 at 8:30 am #114474
Sorry I missed your post last night.
For some reason I am having a hard time coming up with a film that I would exclusively describe as “positive.” I did a bit of digging on the web and found a site that may give you some good leads. The name of the site is agoodmovietowatch.com You can select movies by “mood.”
I hope you find something you like.
CMISeptember 7, 2016 at 8:27 am #114473
My tastes are very eclectic, too. There is so much to see, learn about, and enjoy in the world.
Yes, it would be very nice to be able to find a connection with almost everyone.
CMISeptember 5, 2016 at 7:20 pm #114334
Please forgive the sidebar.
I have often heard of mindfulness of one’s feelings, but I have never seen a step-by-step process by which one could achieve that mindfulness. It is so nice to see the process in print so that I can better understand what being mindful of one’s feelings functionally means.
Thank you so much for your post.
CMISeptember 5, 2016 at 7:13 pm #114333
You asked, “Can you guys think of more things to raise in life to increase wealth and success, other than actual numbers on your bank account?”
I suggest that strictly depends on how one defines and measures the terms “wealth” and “success.”
Although I could write a lengthy explanation about how I define those terms for myself, it is far more important to understand how you define those terms. In western (and particularly US) society, those terms are frequently defined in monetary terms, or reflections of monetary terms, as manifested via: income; make and year model of car(s) and other vehicles (motorcycles, boats, JetSkis, ATVs—whatever); value, location, square footage, architectural trendiness, etc. of one’s house(s); most current model of smart phone, iPad, TV—whatever technology du jure; jewelry; trendiness of clothing, hair styles, etc.; IRAs, 401Ks; and many, many other things. I assume that these things are what you generally mean when you write “actual numbers on your bank account.”
To better understand where you may be coming from, let me ask: at what point do you think the finally tally of “wealth” and “success” are measured?
CMISeptember 4, 2016 at 1:54 pm #114229
Regarding your mental health and “obsession,” I don’t think that I’m qualified to assess that possibility with any real validity. Although I could be wrong, you seem to me to be a person who has quite a few interests and passions, but no one (or at least very few) people with whom you can talk about these things. From that perspective, it does not seem unreasonable that you would be inclined to write a lot when you meet someone who has similar interests. However, please understand that I may not be able to respond to everything you’ve written as fully as I would normally like. You’ve talked about a lot of things.
I encourage you to explore your passion for creativity and Art. However, as you probably already know, Art is fundamentally a dialogue, and so many things inform the artist’s perspective, including other genres and forms of Art. My poetry, for example, is extremely influenced by what training I’ve had in the visual arts. That’s not to say that I try to write picturesquely or “painterly,” but I do quite often find myself thinking in terms of positive and negative space, continuous-line contours, or blind contours, or gestures, or, (conversely) color without line, etc. I also think in terms of symbolism (common to all of the arts), but where visual art is concerned, particularly in terms of the symbolism used in the vanitas.
There are many other ways in which all of my more formal creative endeavors (e.g. the various forms of visual art, poetry, music composition, writing, etc.) are influenced by all the other arts, but the point I am getting to is that I encourage you not to limit your education of the arts (formal or informal) to only one area. I also encourage you not to intentionally limit your study of a particular form of art just because you do not see yourself ultimately having a career in that particular form.
Given your appreciation for the visual arts, you appreciation for cinematography is certainly logical. I know that a film’s cinematography can make or break a film for me.
I can appreciate the idea of allowing doors to open as they may, and taking advantage of opportunities as they may present themselves, but I also encourage you to actively pursue your interests, too. If you’ll pardon me relying on an old adage, consider that “Fortune favors the prepared mind.”
I, too, am about to pursue studies in Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, and a few other disciplines. If you’re interested in knowing more, I’ll tell you about it via e-mail.
Like you, I also have several creative endeavors outside my job and fields of study. Also like you, I have very many interests, including language. Although having so many interests does seem to be a drawback at times—like I could ever devote all of the time I would like to all of them, and become as proficient in them as I would like—I wouldn’t have it any other way. I can’t begin to tell you how much I love having so much in my life.
Although I would love to travel, like you, I am more interested in connecting with and understanding the culture, which means I would need to live in a place for several years to fully have that opportunity. Right now, I have obligations that keep me where I am, so moving to another country has to stay on hold.
Regarding 2001: A Space Odyssey, that is probably one of the first masterpieces of cinema I ever saw. I could talk about if for hours. It is also one of the movies that sparked my interest in classical music. I am so glad that Kubrick did not use the score that was written for the movie by Alex North, but chose to use performances of existing music instead. I am particularly thankful that he included György Ligeti’s music. The movie’s screenplay was actually written (by Clarke and Kubrick) before Clarke’s novel was completed. If you read the novel, it is a bit clearer what is going on. As I said, I could talk for hours about this, but I have limited time, and there is still a lot to reply to from your post. I’m sure you’ll have no problem finding a plethora of analyses on the film. It sparked a lot of questions in viewers’ minds, and subsequently a lot of analysis.
Like you, I too I can do a “little bit” of a lot of things. I don’t worry that I haven’t pursued one exclusively, though. That’s just not the way I am inclined.
I’m sorry you’re lonely. Regarding my comment about isolation, it wasn’t my intent to imply that anyone was “lesser than” me, or that their interests had any less value. I think of the disparity in interests in terms of being “different from” mine, without any qualitative assessment. I also don’t see it in terms of either myself or the other person being lacking or as needing to be fixed. We’re just different, that’s all. One of the strategies I’ve found (and I’m sure many folks use this) is to make many acquaintances with whom you can share your interests. Only very rarely will you find someone who shares many of your interests, but if you can find several people who share at least one of your interests, collectively you can talk about most, if not all, of the things you like and feel less isolated and perhaps less lonely.
CMISeptember 4, 2016 at 11:24 am #114214
In response to your question, “Do I contact her and if not what do I do?” Based on what you wrote about her, I suggest that it would not be to your benefit to contact her. What would be the point? Would you be willing to go back to a relationship where everything revolves around her, and there is no reciprocity? If not, then what would be the benefit of contacting her?
If she ever gets to the point that she realizes that relationships are two-ways streets, so to speak, and if she is willing to make an honest effort to reciprocate in a relationship, and if she contacts you wanting such a relationship with you, then, at that time, resuming communication with her might be a beneficial thing, until then, not so much, really.
Regarding what you do if you don’t contact her, that is not an easy question to fully answer. The short answer is that you go on with your life: you get up every day and do what needs to be done; you enjoy life as you can; you pursue your interests; you date as you choose; you make it through the hard times as best you can, and you enjoy the good times to the fullest; you don’t give up on life or love, but you thoroughly evaluate your hopes about life and love, and be realistic about things.
In the end, though, you are the one who must ultimately decide what you do if you don’t contact her.
From my own perspective, finding someone with whom I want to be in a relationship, and with whom I want to spend the rest of my life, and who also wants the same with me, is going to be extremely difficult in this society that highly values and perpetuates false, illusory, and even ridiculous standards. But to sit around dwelling on not finding someone would be a HUGE and indefensible waste of my life, as would be settling for a relationship that is non-beneficial and destructive to me. I’m fully open to the possibility of finding someone, and I certainly explore the possibilities that present themselves, but if it happens, it happens. If not, then I’m good with that, too, as long as I don’t waste my life in the meantime.
Also consider that if you contact her, and things don’t change, and you end up settling for her, you run the risk of not meeting, and more importantly not being prepared to meet—by not having had the opportunity to grow from processing the loss of this destructive relationship, etc.—someone with whom you could be happy and with whom you might be able to spend the rest of your life.
CMISeptember 3, 2016 at 7:52 pm #114156
Thanks for mentioning the documentary series, Human. It is on YouTube. I’ve added it to my documentary playlist and will watch it when I have a chance. There’s a link for Life in a Day on YouTube, too, but it says the film is not available. It looks like Samsara can be rented through YouTube.
I’m sorry; I am not aware of anything that is experimental. I’m sure there are experimental things out there, though.
I am extremely attuned to the cinematography of a movie, just as much as I am to a movie’s soundtrack, or lack of soundtrack. I still need a decent story, though.
Feel free to categorize all you’d like. I’ll go along for the ride!
Thanks for the suggestion about the annotations. And thanks for the list of top 50 Pinoy films!
I wholly agree with you about an eclectic taste being the best. I’ve found that it can be a bit isolating at times though, especially when one is around folks with very limited tastes, experiences, and worldviews.
Have you considered pursuing a career in filmmaking, in whatever capacity? It sounds like it would be the perfect venue for you.
CMISeptember 3, 2016 at 10:46 am #114123
Thank you for your reply.
I hadn’t thought about that; perhaps it would have been wiser for me to have been less accommodating regarding the book’s title. On the other hand, I don’t think that people’s knowledge of the book will, in itself, cause them to disregard her wishes. It may minimally facilitate it, but ultimately they make that decision themselves.
Thank you for your kind words!
CMISeptember 1, 2016 at 4:57 pm #113962
Regarding whether I consider myself to be a good conversationalist, I guess that would depend on how one defines “good.” However, Im not really in a position to accurately answer that question. The folks with whom I converse would be far more able to make that determination. However, as far as general conversations go, I would guess that I am an average conversationalist, at least compared to how I perceive the conversational abilities of others. I’m sure, like most people, the more interested I am in a topic, the better I listen and participate. On the other hand, the less I am interested, the more I find myself paying attention to the mechanics of polite conversation, so that I don’t come across as being invalidating or bored, and I don’t always succeed in doing that. I do find it hard to go too far beyond two or three questions to fuel the fires of a conversation in which I am not interested. If the person’s interests are extremely different from mine, I may make eye-contact, nod my head, and make acknowledging responses, but in the back of my mind I am trying to figure out a way to end the conversation politely.
Why do you ask?
How about you? Do you consider yourself to be a good conversationalist?
CMISeptember 1, 2016 at 2:09 pm #113959
No worries about e-mailing. I wouldn’t want anyone to take offense at our conversation.
Martin Scorsese made a documentary about Italian film called Il mio viaggio in Italia, a.k.a. “My Voyage to Italy” (2001) that I particularly recommend to you. I know I’ve seen other documentaries about film by other well-known directors, too, but, I’m sorry, I can’t remember the titles.
I will watch the video about Miyazaki on the Channel Criswell. And when I have a chance, I’ll watch a Miyazaki movie. Is there one you particularly recommend?
Generally speaking, are there any films you would recommend from your area of the world?
CMIAugust 31, 2016 at 8:51 pm #113871
She did, on occasion—very rarely—acknowledge a few aspects of her poor behavior, but I suspect that was only after a therapy session. During her push cycles, though, no, she admitted nothing, and blamed me for everything. Projection, blaming, and gaslighting were her go-to tools of misdirection and exculpation.
As I mentioned before, I suggest that he is still trying to get negative attention from you, which (if you reply) he hopes to use to his advantage to turn on the charm again and get you back in the push-pull cycle.
My ex claimed to love and care for me, too, and to a certain extent, I think she did. But more than anything, I think it was mirroring on her part, and going through the motions of something she may have wanted, but didn’t truly know how to achieve or sustain. Whatever her reality was on the matter, I don’t think she truly knew how to love or care on such an in-depth level. I don’t mean that disparagingly; I just don’t think she had ever been shown in-depth love or care by anyone, including her parents, to know what it was, or how to reciprocate it.
My ex never truly apologized either. I don’t think she ever fully allowed herself to believe that she did anything hurtful, either. If she ever acknowledged to herself that she had been hurtful, I think her defenses of projecting, blaming, and gaslighting kicked in before she allowed herself to deal with her own culpability. From the sound of it, I suspect that your ex is doing the same thing.
I also suggest that he is continuing to contact you, not because he cares, but because he is trying to play the game out as far as he can to either get you back into the push-pull cycle, or to string you along as a backup, or as a safety net while he finds someone else to fully take your place. Whenever he gets a replacement for you (I know that sounds harsh, but that is the way it is characterized in the discussions about PDs) I would guess that he will eventually stop contacting you.
If he refuses to admit any wrong-doing on his part, if he is not currently in, and is unwilling to attend therapy, I suggest that there is absolutely no hope for this relationship ever to be a positive and beneficial thing for you.
I know the pain and longing that comes with remembering the “good” times, but you have to be strong and see the whole picture and do what is best for yourself in the long run. Tell yourself that the longing is for the experience of love, closeness, caring, happiness, etc., with someone that is good for you, someone that treats you right, someone with whom you can be in a long-term, positive, beneficial relations ship, but NOT him.
I continue to encourage you to stay strong, and maintain no contact with him. It WILL eventually get easier.
CMIAugust 31, 2016 at 7:57 pm #113861
Thank you for the YouTube channel. It looks interesting! I’ll take a look at its videos this weekend.
Thank you, too, for the Daily Vibes blog. I’ll look at that this weekend, too. The meaning of Samsara, as a film’s name, already intrigues me.
Regarding time management and film — for me, at least, budgeting time for film is hard to justify, particularly when I have other, higher priorities. But when I have some downtime, and everything else is done, watching a good film is downright satisfying. The more I learn, the more I realize how amazingly ignorant I am about so many things. And there are so many things I want to know everything about, right now! But I only have so much time in a day, and due to the necessities of life, much of that time is already spoken for. I think that is fairly normal for everyone. Having read some of your other posts in other areas, I imagine that it is not so much an issue of time management for you, but a huge desire to know so very much, and, due to life, only so much time into which you can fit everything. If that is indeed the case, I know the feeling. I wish I could say that it gets easier, but from my experience, it doesn’t. The more I know, the more I want to know, and there are still only 24 hours in a day. I suggest that you fit your study of film in where you can, learn as you have the opportunity, and not pressure yourself to know everything right now. You just can’t do it.
There is no reason to be shy about your list. It is, after all, YOUR list, which is—and should be—every bit as unique as you are unique. And, as you say, you have only begun your journey.
I’ve heard of Jean-Luc Godard, and I think I saw À bout de soufflé, a.k.a. “Breathless” (1960), at one point, but I don’t recall much about it. I’ll have to put some of his films on my list.
A friend of mine went to school with Wes Anderson, and has the high school yearbook to prove it, so I guess I have two degrees of separation from him. That, and three dollars, will get me a small cup of coffee at Starbucks.
Wes’ films have intrigued me, and I am still trying to fully understand the language of his style. The more I see of his films the more I appreciate him as a director and storyteller. His film The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) inspired me to buy The Collected Stories of Stefan Zweig, but my reading list is long, and my stack of books to read is high, so I haven’t gotten to it yet. If I were to pick a favorite film of Wes’, it would either be Moonrise Kingdom (2012), or The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004). I really like the overall story of Moonrise Kingdom, but the Melvillian leanings of The Life Aquatic appeals to me, too (as you might guess from my forum name). The scene that gets me the most, and gets me all misty-eyed, is when they are in the submarine, they see the fish, and Steve says, “I wonder if it remembers me.” Then he puts his hand on Jane’s stomach, viz., her in utero baby. I also like the sentiment of his words, which reminds me of Karen Blixen’s (a.k.a. Isak Dinesen) words, “… does Africa know a song of me?” from her autobiographical novel Out of Africa.
I have heard that Hayao Miyazaki is a giant in anime, but I have not been able to warm up to anime yet—perhaps to my woeful discredit.
If you are like me, your list of favorite films will constantly change throughout your life. Only after many, many years have I been able to select a solid top five films.
I hope you will not limit your conversation about anything based on how well-versed you perceive yourself to be. No one is omniscient, and we are all ignorant of many, many things. There is no shame in acknowledging the holes in one’s knowledge. The sin of disingenuousness, as it were, is affecting an erudition that one does not possess.
No, I haven’t studied film academically. I’d like to do so, but (like my reading list) my “like to do” list is long, and my time is limited.
I don’t see a PM option on the forum. Yes, you can e-mail me. I suggest that you create an ad hoc e-mail account (if you don’t already have one) and tell me what it is (assuming that by doing so no rules of the forum are broken). Bear in mind, though, that when you tell me, everyone else will see it, too. I’ll send you a note, and when you are convinced that I am the one with whom you are conversing, we can talk privately.