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New and Improved: the journey, rebirth, a new world

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This topic contains 256 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  anita 9 hours, 24 minutes ago.

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  • #315373

    cali sister
    Participant

    Hi Anita – this is directed towards you, so I hope that you see it. Remember me? I sure hope you do. I wanted to start writing here again. My sister and I speak of you- almost like a family member! I hope you have been doing well. I really miss sharing with you.

    I felt saddened a while back when my sister had stated (along with a plethora of other things)- “not even Anita wants to talk to you.” It took time for that wound to heal – and my relationship with her has greatly improved. I feel ready to write here again.

    I’m not sure what we even spoke of last or where I was – but here I am now in my dream city, with my dream job. I am a manager at my job and also perform clinical duties – it is the best of both worlds for me. I live in my own apartment (pay WAY too much rent!!) with my pup. My pup is doing great – he loves this city. I have made a good group of girlfriends. I have learned to cook. My exercise routine is getting..better! Dating..is the least of my priorities.

    There is so much to say and so much to talk about of course. I’ll start here – here are some things that I have really learned this year-

    The value of patience – the idea of trust in the “universe”

    Definition of love – for most, love is given by parents and it becomes almost innate. I had to literally teach myself the definition of love. It has been very difficult to learn what love is. And I realize I had it all wrong all these years.

     

    Lastly, what is going on with parents? I have adjusted my boundaries extremely. This is all a new adjustment for me. I do weekly therapy to deal with all of the .. stuff .. I guess that is coming up with all of this. My sister going no contact with my parents caused much distress on me because of their behavior after it. I am slowly taking it step by step to do what is healthiest for me. So far, I have been succeeding. Not to say it has not been difficult. I have been having panic attacks in the middle of the night – my dreams – that feel like a heart attack – major chest pain. I know this is all of the journey. I have behaved a certain way for 27 years, so of course it will take time to adjust to a new way.

    The boundaries I have set (for example – I have not spoken to them on the phone and hardly responded to their text messages for about 3-4 weeks now) – which is a major accomplishment for me. I want nothing to do with them, but I do not feel ready to go no contact – simply because of my father. Is this stupid…perhaps. I do not care for my mother. My father is the one that holds me back. I realize that all of this has truly broken my heart. It is very emotionally taxing. I am so exhausted some days when I haven’t even done much. If I remember correctly, I think that you think the only way out is no contact. I hope you can still chat with me through this journey. I am on my way. But it is just beginning for me. Let’s chat more. much more to say – MANY more details to give.

     

    Love always.

    #315383

    anita
    Participant

    Dear calisister:

    Not only do  I remember you, but this very morning, 10:17 am (1:17 pm your time), I wrote the following to your sister regarding you,  not knowing at all that you started a new thread today: “I miss talking to her, by the way. I was impatient with her for a while..  and I regret that. You can share my regret with her if you think it is a good idea”-

    – and next thing I see your new thread, what a pleasant surprise!

    I understand you being in contact with your parents because of your father. He and your mother is a package deal, aren’t they? More accurately- there is very little  of your father that is not owned by your mother. Am I correct?

    How is your relationship with your father and does it bring you any comfort at times?

    anita

     

    #315387

    cali sister
    Participant

    HELLO!

    So happy to hear from you.

    Yes- very little of him that is not owned by my mother.

    A lot of it comes from the brainwash my mother (I call her parrot, as in a poisoned parrot – from a worksheet I did in therapy) did regarding his health problems. She essentially made it that his life and his heart issues depended on me/was my fault. Obviously no true, but very traumatic. I used to wake up in the middle of the night when I was young to go check if my father was breathing.

    In other ways, growing up I think I felt more love from him than my mother. I felt safe and protected. Of course, this can all be false – and I was a child. I remember when my mother and I were in Guatemala and I was in the hospital. She was unable to handle any of it, hardly took care of me, and also blamed me for ruining her vacation. I remember feeling that all I wanted was my father. And the moment we got home and I saw my dad, I felt completely different. No more anxiety. A lot of this can also be from parrot – as she is unable to handle things on her own and seeks support – so I may have been cloning that behavior or perspective – that with dad, everything is ok and that alone it is not.

    But I believe that I feel for him. His parents treated him horribly too, he always called himself an orphan. But here he is – doing the same thing to me. Is he good to me? Does he show me love? Are his intentions in my best interest? NO. He is not only the enabler of parrot, but he himself is also treating me horribly. Oh, just horribly Anita. So I am not sure where this bond comes from. Like I said, I have not been responding to them. The other day they sent me (not joking) 88 pictures since they are traveling in Spain right now. I opened it to make the notification go away – I usually do not look at them. But one popped up. It was my father alone in the picture. And my heart dropped and tears filled my eyes. I do not know why. But I do know this is not healthy, to feel this way. And I want to deal with this emotion because I believe that it is my hindrance for fully entering my own world.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by  cali sister.
    #315399

    anita
    Participant

    Dear calisister:

    It is common that a child growing up with an abusive parent, finds refuge with the other parent even though the other parent is not great, but if he is better than the worse, well- that’s the only option a child has for any feeling of safety. (For the mistreated child, there is no alternative reality option of a set of calm, loving parents… except in fantasy).

    “He is not  only the enabler or parrot, but he himself is also treating me horribly”- but not as horribly as your mother. And a scared child has to get a break once in a while from feeling scared. You experienced those breaks from anxiety with your father (“the moment we got home and I saw my dad, I felt completely different. No more anxiety”).

    You experienced those breaks not because he was a good father to you, but because he was not as bad as your mother. He was the … safer person.

    Your mother “made it that his health issues depended on me/ was my fault”, you wrote, “I used to wake up  in the middle of the night when I was young to go check if my father was breathing”. Fast forward, at 27, you ae living in your “dream city, with my dream job.. a manager at my job.. live in my own apartment” (congratulations for these accomplishments!), and you “have been having panic attacks  in the middle of the night.. feel like a heart attack- major chest pain”-

    – the child calisister waking up in the middle of the night to check if her father (her safer parent) was breathing-> twenty years later, she wakes up in the middle of  the night, her own chest hurting.

    What do you think?

    anita

     

     

    #315695

    cali sister
    Participant

    Anita,

    I thought a lot about what you said. I cried all morning. First time in weeks. Today is the day I want to go NC. My biggest fear – they know where I live and will come to my apartment. It’s not only a fear – it’s something that will definitely happen. There is no way for me to live in my world with influence of their world. So I know I must do this. The thing holding me back is having them near my apartment. Especially this weekend and today – my mother doesn’t drive but my father is off today and all weekend. There is no doubt they will immediately drive over or come to my job. What do I do? I am terrified.

    #315701

    cali sister
    Participant

    I know they will come banging on my door. I know they will hang out on my street. They are relentless and will not give up. I can see them showing up to the hospital I work at. I do not know what to do about this. It is also my sisters bday weekend. She knows nothing about this but I am afraid that this decision will cause an uproar. On their end

    #315711

    anita
    Participant

    Dear cali sister:

    It doesn’t read to me like a good idea that you will go no-contact from your parents today or anytime soon.

    Let’s look at what you wrote in your original post regarding your parents: “I have adjusted my boundaries extremely. This is all a new adjustment for me… I am slowly taking it step by step to do what is healthiest for me. So far, I have been succeeding“-

    – what brought about your success has been taking it slowly, step by step. Because the adjustment you made regarding your parents is new, it is too soon at this point to cut all contact with them. Continue with your step by step (and breaks between steps), slow healing.

    Only the day before yesterday you wrote: “I do not feel ready to go no contact”- so not yet.

    You wrote Tues: “If I remember correctly, I think that you think the only way out is no contact”- it is not urgent at all in your case because you live independently of them and your contact with them is way less than ever before. The idea of cutting contact with them significantly increased your distress, so better not consider it anytime in the near future. What do you think???

    anita

    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 6 days ago by  anita.
    #315715

    cali sister
    Participant

    I think it is time because seeing their constant phone calls and messages is causing so much distress. I felt like that a day or two ago I realize because they were not in this country. Now they are back and the whirlwind has begun. I feel it in my heart that it is time.

    #315719

    anita
    Participant

    Dear cali sister:

    I feel a mixture of excitement and concern about your decision. Knowing as much as I know about your parents and you and your sister, I am all for it if it is the right time for you.

    Let’s consider then the concerns you brought up: “There is no doubt they will immediately drive over or come to my job… I know they will come banging on my door. I know they will hang out on my street. They are relentless and will not give up. I can see them showing up to the hospital I work at”-

    – reminds me  of what your sister wrote when she considered cutting contact with them she was afraid that they will be so distraught that they will involve the whole family trying to find her and will end up in a mental hospital from heartbreak.

    But that didn’t happen,  did it?

    I mean, Cali Chica, whom you referred to before as your mother’s obsession, when she cut contact with your mother, your mother didn’t end up in a mental hospital. Instead, she just returned from another vacation abroad (“a day or two  ago..they were not in this country”)?

    anita

    #315723

    cali sister
    Participant

    Anita – when I woke up this morning and saw all of my fathers texts and calls – I just COULDN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE. They keep texting me – non stop. They keep calling me – non stop. Seeing that causes much much much distress. and does not let me heal.

    You know that feeling? When you wake up one day and you just know it is time. I felt this way before – and then when they went to Spain for vacation – it was much easier. But it was all an illusion. The moment they came back Anita – the feelings flooded back. There is nothing to wait for anymore. I do not want to live like this anymore.

    I let my director know in case they show up here- and she will inform security. She recommended perhaps an attorney for a restraining order but I am not sure how that works.

    I also emailed my building management to see what they can do with regards to not letting them upstairs to my apartment.

    I have a plan to perhaps send them a text saying I no longer wish to speak to them because they have caused me too much pain – I will state that I have moved apartments and not to show up there or they will call the police.

    #315725

    cali sister
    Participant

    I spent my morning at work bawling in my office. Bawling. Crying with pain, heartbreak, fear, sadness. Clenching my stomach. If this isn’t the time, I do not know what is. My co worker saw this. My director saw this. I think the time has come.

    #315729

    anita
    Participant

    Dear cali sister:

    I think they text and call you a lot because it is easy to text and call- you  know how easy it is to use the phone. This doesn’t mean they will do the hard work of actually driving or riding the streets looking for you. But just in case they will- you took the right precautions.

    You remember all the times your mother uninvited you to places, how she sent you out of the house when guests arrived.. literally kicking you out of her house. Well, time for cali sister to stay away for good.

    I would like to read from you as often as you need or want to post to me, I will check throughout the day to see if you posted and reply to you before I reply to anyone else.

    anita

    #315733

    cali sister
    Participant

    Oh Anita. How heartbreaking this is. Did you also feel heartbreak? How much easier this would be if they were neglectful, but after my sister went NC – they have become even more obsessed with me of course. I see what you are saying about driving here and the effort. But since my sister is gone and now they are also losing me – I feel they will jet here. Esp since my dad is off today from work. They truly have nothing to do.

    It’s interesting. One thing – I always feared that if I did this, my father would have a heart attack. Now if that does happen, it will be what it is. A heart attack. And not my fault. I do not have the power to cause heart attacks.

    It is time for me to stay away for good. I know if I have to call the police, it will be tough for me.

    This is all tough. I am sad to cause so much harm to my father. However, I know this will be life changing for me.

    Thank you, anita

    #315741

    anita
    Participant

    Dear cali sister:

    Almost always, the parent is way more important to the child than the child is to the parent. We imagine our parents can’t live without us but then.. they prove  us wrong.

    Think of your history, again, how you were uninvited, how your mother sent you out of the house, that time she got so mad at you saying she has no privacy in her own house because you were there. Doesn’t read to me like you were important to her, more like a nuisance.

    When I cut contact with my mother I went through a whole lot of guilt and distress. But that doesn’t mean it has to be the case for you as well. I no longer feel guilt because over time I was able to separate in my own mind between these two things: my need for her vs her need for me.

    I needed her all along, I loved her- not the other way around.

    This was mind boggling to me, didn’t know it.

    And you are welcome, cali sister. I am glad we are communicating again, and unlike last time when I got impatient with you (I regret it)- it will not happen  again, I know it.

    anita

    #315743

    cali sister
    Participant

    That is mind boggling. Brings tears to my eyes. And thank you for your apology.

    As I sit here at my desk and contemplate when I will do this today, memories of my father come rushing in. I realize none of them are really about me, but about how I was trying to make him happy. As if he was some sort of puppy. I remember him more like “aww dad” versus a father figure.

    Am I a terrible person for causing these parents to lose yet another child? (I know the answer is no, but I’d like to see your response to it).

    I do not think it is possible for me to be in this new world of mine and learn ME with their influence. Even a text or a call I consider an influence. Because it is a disturbance of peace.

    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 6 days ago by  cali sister.
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