May 1, 2013 at 7:04 am #35004NicoParticipant
I nearly committed suicide this last January, but I decided to change my life instead.
I am scared of this new life, and I need reassurance and help.
In childhood I was heavily emotionally abused. My father had the temper of an earthquake, which left my whole family walking on eggshells day by day. My mother turned to drink, and we had a housemaid who thought it alright to beat me up when they weren’t around. They would want an arranged marriage for me when I completed my studies.
I was brilliant in school though, and I kept all that rage and anger to keep going. One day, I would be out. And I eventually made it out after a large battle that took everything out of me. I saved up like crazy to put myself through film school abroad, and I subsequently bought my house, had it renovated, saw the value of it go up, and saw my career flourish for 15 years.
But I was a wreck. I had no self esteem and I went through life people pleasing. The anger towards my parents never subsided, and my choice of romantic relationships were all based on insecurities. I did not make great personal choices as I was only too needy for love and self esteem. I attracted the same sort of people, and got into destructive relationships.
I was made redundant last July and I decided to take some time off. I made some new friends who were very different to the toxic ones I had previously had, and I reconnected with some old friends who I met over the years. I found that the people I loved most were not the ones I was subconsciously competing with in order to feel better about myself, but the ones we could mutually treat as individuals. It changed my thinking about what was important.
I realized I could not go back to the film industry with its long working hours (16 hour days are not uncommon, plus weekends for months on end), and I wanted to change my life.
So I spoke to my dad, to ask him to help me out starting a business. A lot of this is to reconnect with my family who are growing old. I have fully forgiven them for everything in the past, and I am determined to go back to work on a project that will make our relationship flourish.
But I fear I am being naiive. My sister reminded me that there will be no dating allowed, that I would still have to witness the abusive way in which my dad treats my mother, and that I am looking at things through rose-tinted windows. That even though they are seemingly getting older and calmer now, that by going back to live with them, everything will resurface. I would have no hope of meeting anyone (I wouldn’t be able to in such an emotional state), plus even if I did, they would strongly object. No self-respecting man would want to see someone like myself who gets in such a state in such a turbulent family anyway.
I was looking forward to leaving in the next few days, but the terrible conversation I had with my younger sister made me angry and scared, and totally fearful I am making the worst decision of my life. But I already got to the point of suicide before I decided to give myself a second chance with this business with my father.
If it doesn’t work out, I really am afraid I will just go mad and find a way to end it all.
Can anyone, anyone, give me one bit of wisdom and encouragement? I fear if I start this whole thing with no hope inside, I will lose my fight. I felt so hopeful these last four months when I decided to change my life, but now, days away from the flight back, I am a wreck.
Thanks in advance.May 2, 2013 at 8:10 am #35022Marilyn Briant-RockmoreParticipant
There is so much in your story that is good. You have been through a lot, changed the way you think and behave and become stronger as a result.It seems to me you don’t need anyone’s wisdom – you already have it inside you, and you would benefit from connecting with it…Your sister has voiced some valid concerns, but why project all that negativity into situations which have not occurred? If you have decided to try and make the new business work, the only way to find out if you will be successful is to try. I have always found that the only way to deal with fear is to face it. Everyone gets fearful about things, and acknowledging there could be problems is helpful. Predicting outcomes like you will go mad etc. is not helpful.
You were brilliant in school, and you had a great career, both of which are great indicators that you will be successful in a new business venture if you stay focused. Who’s to say that once things get going and feel more independant financially that you won’t find your own place, while continuing to work with your family?
I have found as I have developed greater spiritual awareness that I am more comfortable voicing my feelings and setting boundaries. No-one can help you decide whether having to witness your father’s abusive behavior is enough for you to change your mind about living and working with him. You say he has changed as he has aged and maybe that’s true. In any event, you have changed and even though you are moving away, will still be in contact with the new supportive friends you have made. In deciding to go ahead it is important for you to remind yourself of this. Remember too that loving yourself means feeling comfortable stating your feelings and setting boundaries — witnessing your father’s abusive behavior towards your mother, may involve this.
Feel good about yourself and live in the moment – let go of the fear and let your heart guide your way.
Love and peace,
MarilynMay 3, 2013 at 3:00 am #35087crystalParticipant
My dear Nico,
I am a school going girl and i don’t think that my advice will be of any use to you as i have not seen the world as much as you have….but, i do want to tell you that nothing can be that bad for you to take an extreme decision as suicide…!! I understand that you have not had a pretty childhood and you feel a bit bad about yourself..but that was in the past…. Please please don’t let it all affect your future…. And i feel that when you think your dad is crossing limits, then you can do two things-either try to calm him down by reasoning with him….or slightly express your displeasure about him acting that way…
You can’t ignore what your sister said but at the same time don’t let it affect you to such a great extent.Things may be different with her and different with you…Just trust in yourself….just a little trust to begin with,and then you will surely see a positive change..!! Your dad has become old,i’m sure he too misses you.And whenever you feel low about yourself….just think-you are born to change the world,so don’t give up without even trying to change atleast one person….
You can’t stop your eyes from seeing the ugly things and nither can you stop your ears from listening to the abuses…but you can control what decisions you make from your heart..even when we are passive some thoughts will get impressed on our mind…..it depends on us how we choose to react to those thoughts..There’s always a silver lining,all you have to do is look for it…
I know its easy for me to just advice you about your life..but its you who will choose how to live it…
Loads of best wishes for your future dear,
Crystal..May 3, 2013 at 5:23 am #35091CasyiParticipant
Every experience is unique, every feeling is unique. I can never say that I one hundred percent understand how you feel, but I do have a good understanding of where you’re coming from. The things you say about an abusive father, which I also had, resulted into having low self-esteem, constantly looking for love and being needy while dating. My best friend calls me self-destructive when it comes to relationships. I always, always seem to choose the ones that don’t last and hurts me like crazy.
I’ve thought about suicide too, but I probably won’t do it because I realized after all the tough things I’ve been through I know I can get out of it again. Pain is just a snapshot in life. It will feel like it’ll never go away, ever, but it does. It fades. The battle wound may never heal fully and leave a scar, but a scar is okay. It shows courage and determination.
Don’t be scared to fail. Don’t forget about how you felt before you talked to your sister. Don’t let the negative feelings conquer your positive ones. Negative feelings are always stronger than the positive ones, but you can mentally overcome them by repeating these words to yourself.
Falling is okay, if you get up again. Fall six times, stand up seven times. Only by failing you’ll receive succes. Look at Steve Jobs, he had failed many times before reaching the top. Look at Michael Jordan, they told him he shouldn’t play basketbal because he just sucked and look at him now. Look at Walt Disney, people told him he wasn’t creative enough. So don’t be scared for this.
As for your abusive father. It’s just not right. Don’t let him get the best of you. Be strong, try it. It’s better to regret what you’ve done than regretting what you haven’t done. If it doesn’t work out, just leave. Go to your friends. You shouldn’t feel jailed, there are always more routes to your destination.
I hope this helps and hope you’ll keep us updated.May 7, 2013 at 5:02 pm #35231gingerParticipant
I believe you do have hope inside of you. You have hope enough that you wrote this post and we want to help you. I think you are strong enough do what you hope to accomplish with new business. What is your culture? Is dating something you are wanting in your life right now? I believe you can have a distant yet loving daily relationship with your family but sometimes things will happen when you are close around family that can trigger old emotions. That is okay, it is okay to have bad sometimes because without the bad we cannot have the good. If you find after trying that you are unable to deal with some things then give yourself permission to separate yourself from those negative things.
My mother abandoned me to take care of my 12 year old sister when I was 16 because she was addicted to drugs. My father has been in and out of jail and i do not have a relationship with him. I find now that when I am around my mother who is fully better and not on drugs now that I am angry sometimes. I was very sick recently and all i wanted was a hug, but I didnt get that from her. I do know that I am happy my mother is alive and I realize that she can’t really care for me if she cant care for herself. I think parents are just people sometimes and will never be a parent. I hope that you can see the people inside of your parents and not the icky relationship skills or communication skills they used to raise you. You are wonderfully smart, a great writer on here and in touch with your emotions. You are gifted because you are in touch with yourself, something your parents werent able to accomplish within themselves. You are an amazing strong being.