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  • #373678
    Nar
    Participant

    I wanted to talk about one girl I met 3 months ago. I met her at a retreat and I was the first person she talked to. She is kind of a person who would probably make the worst presenter, it is very difficult to listen to her. She talked really a lot without a proper structure to her conversations to the point I felt it would be rude for me to leave but I really wanted her to stop talking.

    Having realised this trait about her, I never spoke with her during the retreat again as I wanted to have some peace and quietness. Until the end of the retreat when we exchanged contacts. Someone else from our group created a WhatsApp group and we were both added to this group.

    A little back story about me and making friends-due to my past bitter experiences with friends I am aware I struggle to build sustainable friendships with people. Partially because, I care really a lot and get deeply involved. I don’t have many friends, but those I do have i care about really deeply. So even though I knew it wasn’t good for me to be in touch with this girl ( As i felt something wasn’t just right for me), i still wanted to not listen to my gut feeling and ignore my intuition. Also, I was interested in her as a person. It was about me opening my mind and heart. Call it an experiment.

    Having spent many hours chatting with her on WhatsApp, and maybe 15 hours overall talking on the phone and meeting within 3 months, and 90% of our talks were around her and her life problems. I realised I got myself into a rabbit hole. Her behaviour is full of contradictions and conflict. For example, she says “everything is love” every time she is in a difficult situation or has a really bad argument with someone. Or when someone really upsets her, she is delusional about what happened. Does not acknowledge  there is a lot of pain and suffering in this world, not everything is love. I realised  she uses this phrase as her shield against everything bad happening to her and in the world.

    Then, other very conflicting things about her and how she says one things but does something else. She says she had no expectations from our retreat, but in reality right before our retreat she told me all about her expectations. She talks about the power of letting go and being completely vulnerable whereas these are only words. She can’t stop talking about her ex boyfriend who she hadn’t met for a year and still has strong dreams about him. Then she says she has to learn to be friends with him (this is the guy who didn’t want to meet her for a year), she meets him very briefly and sleeps with him.

    Another serious contradiction-she says her body is sacred but at the same time is very open to sleeping with anyone and wants to be a sex worker. She is also very religious about her gender-she is non binary and feels very protective of the queer community to the point where this is all she wants to talk about and says on the group she is dissociated and disconnected from any other talks.

    And now I sit and think-why did I ignore my initial feeling about this person? Clearly she is impacting me very negatively and has been impacting me negatively for 3months now. I realised I got too involved and even though I distanced myself physically from her, it is difficult to distance myself emotionally. Mainly because what bothers me so much is that I see so many conflicting things about her behaviour I can’t talk to her about it. She wouldn’t understand my point and it is not my place to tell her these things.  I tried to bring it up once or twice, she just became very angry and attacked me.

    She just shared too much with me and I got way too involved. I want to understand what happened, learn and move on. But at the same time, I wanted to open my heart and mind more, slowly bring down the wall I built around myself….maybe I just got involved with the wrong/very unstable person. This is my problem…what do you think?

    #373694
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    You shared that you that you “care really a lot and get deeply involved” with the few friends you have, and you “struggle to build sustainable friendships with people”.

    You met a girl on a retreat, a woman “without a proper structure to her conversations… full of contradictions and conflicts.. delusional… says one thing but does something else”, etc.. You’ve been communicating with her for three months, and the result: “Clearly she is impacting me very negatively and has been impacting me negatively for 3 months now.. got too involved.. can’t talk to her.. she wouldn’t understand my point.. I tried to bring it up  once or twice, she just became very angry and attacked me”.

    “I want to understand what happened, learned and move on”.

    My input,  with more quotes: “maybe I just got involved with the wrong/ very unstable person”- yes, clearly. I hope that you end contact with her as soon as possible.

    “I want to open my heart  and mind more, slowly bring down the walls I built around myself”- not with her, not with a person who attacks you, and whose words and behaviors are acutely distressing.

    What about people who are reasonable and who do not attack you, the few friends you mentioned perhaps- didn’t you adequately open your heart and mind to them?

    anita

    #373916
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Thank you so much for your reply.

    I opened my heart adequately to my close friends and these relationships are very good for me. My aim in getting to know this girl was firstly out of curiosity- she is kind of a person I wouldn’t normally meet in life or socialise with. Although I knew she was deeply troubled, I felt like i could handle it. And mostly I did handle her well. i think the problem was that i got attached to her. Also, I felt very sorry for her until i realised

    1)all the stories she tells me are purely her perspective on what happened

    2) she has a strong tendency to victimise herself and be a “martyr”. Kind of thinking -all this pain is happening to me for a reason, I love it, life is so harsh, but I am a fighter”. Whereas in reality, as an observer i saw actually and factually she is the one who causes herself so much pain as she lives in her head too much. and doesn’t want to break away from this cycle. All her problems are in her head, and not outside or in any external evil forces or people

     

    So what bothered me is that I saw all these things and couldn’t speak up. I didn’t know how to tell her these as over time i started caring about her and getting attached. i guess i wanted to open up my heard and that i did 🙂 now, the reason why i posted this is because i want to be able to have a way/strategy to remain open with people but at the same time not get so attached in an unhealthy way, but a healthy way. I was looking for an advice to build healthy friendships even with not always 100% stable people.

    #373918
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    You are welcome. To be able to offer you advice, I need to better understand what kind of advice you are asking for:

    1) “I was looking for an advice to build healthy friendships even with not always 100%”- No person is 100% stable and therefore we all have to befriend imperfectly stable people. Problem is that the woman you described is way, way less than 100%, isn’t she?

    Do you want advice on how to build healthy friendships with imperfect people, or do you want advice on how to build healthy friendships with emotionally disturbed people, like the woman you described?

    2) “the reason why I posted this is because I want to be able to have a way/ strategy to remain open with people but at the same time not get so attached in an unhealthy way, but a healthy way”-  you distinguished between getting attached in an healthy way and getting attached in an unhealthy way. Can you define for me healthy attachment vs unhealthy attachment?

    In your original post, you wrote regarding people in your life: “I care really a lot and get deeply involved”- were you referring to an unhealthy attachment in this quote?

    anita

    #373952
    Nar
    Participant

    1) that is true, its not about imperfections. but she is just really lost and confused and full of contradictions. Also, completely oblivious to the consequences of her actions. She is emotionally deeply disturbed. I just felt really sorry for her and to be honest maybe thought I could help. but it is not my place to help, I understand now.

     

    2) Healthy attachment vs Unhealthy attachment-interesting one. I don’t even know if i can define it. I guess a healthy attachment is when both people who have a relationship are on the same wavelength and intelligence (emotional as well as intellect). When they can understand each other, talk with each other without much hurt. Unhealthy is when one of the parties has a lot of issues to deal with on their own and affects the other emotionally and mentally. Like I was affected by this girl. That’s unhealthy for me.

    About my caring and involvement, i can’t easily detach myself from anyone I care about, be it a healthy or unhealthy relationship. I feel guilty, also that maybe i didnt quite understood this relationship. After all, there is no actual detachment, only another form of attachment.

    #373968
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    This will be a long reply, and please take your time reading and considering what I will be writing to you. First, I will put together much of what you shared in this thread and in the other thread (the more information I have the better, and when I retype quotes, paraphrase and re-arranging information helps me to better process information). Second, my thoughts and suggestions:

    First part- you had “one or another form of OCD” since you were a young child: compulsively washing your hands, ruminating (“remuneration”?) and “getting stuck in thought loops”, and for the last 2 years, you’ve been suffering from “episodes of intrusive thoughts”, thoughts that are “unwelcome and unpleasant and usually something a thinker wouldn’t ever imagine doing”. The current intrusive thoughts are in the form of “strong images” that come in waves: there are periods when they are gone but then, “out of nowhere”, the images return. These images scare you and you feel shame at the idea of talking about them to anyone. You think that behind these images is “deep fear.. fear that I don’t understand and can’t face yet”, and that “maybe it is best to face the fear”.

    Three months ago, you met a girl at a retreat. This is your initial description of her and your reactions to her: “She talked really a lot without a proper structure to her conversations” and you “really wanted her to stop talking”, wanted to leave but thought it would be rude for you to leave, and you didn’t talk to her for most of the retreat because you “wanted to have peace and quietness”.

    Following the retreat you spent many hours chatting with her on WhatsApp and on the phone and you met her in person. Ninety percent of the talks “were around her and her life problems”. Her behavior is “full of contradictions and conflict. For example, she says ‘everything is love’ every time she is in a difficult situation or has a really bad argument with someone.. delusional.. does not acknowledge there is a lot of pain and suffering in this world, not everything is love.. she uses this phrase as her shield against everything bad happening… she says one thing but does something else. She says she had no expectations from our retreat, but in reality right before our retreat she told me all about her expectations”, and she talks a lot about an ex-boyfriend whom “she hadn’t met for a year” but “she meets him very briefly and sleeps with him”, and “she says her body is sacred but.. is very open to sleeping with anyone and wants to be a sex worker”. She “is  just really lost and confused and full of contradictions. Also, completely oblivious to the consequences of her actions. She is emotionally deeply disturbed”.

    Your reaction to 3 months of communication with her: “Clearly she is impacting me very negatively… for 3 months now.. I got too involved…way too involved.. I got attached to her.. felt very sorry for her”. The many conflicts and contradictions in what she says and does bother you. In addition, it bothers you that when you brought it up to her once or twice, “she just became very angry and attacked me”, and therefore, you “can’t talk to her about it… she wouldn’t understand my point”.

    Second part- you stated your objective in regard to communicating with this woman to be this: “I wanted to open my heart and mind more, slowly bring down the wall I built around myself”-

    – I believe that it was indeed your objective: to open your heart and mind more.. to you, to slowly bring down the wall you built around yourself and see what is inside those walls.

    Because she is visibly and audibly so much more disturbed than you, you felt relatively safe to get a glimpse at.. your own disturbance while believing it is her disturbance, not yours.  There are contradictions within you too, there are delusions in your mind too, and that “deep fear… fear that I don’t understand and can’t face yet” is about seeing those contradictions and delusions.

    Seeing your own contradictions and delusions more and more- will be disturbing. This is why it should be done gently and patiently, best in the context of quality psychotherapy.

    Here is a contradiction on her part: she clearly experienced a lot of pain and suffering in her life, but  “She says ‘everything is love’.. does not acknowledge there is a lot of pain and suffering in the world”.

    Here is an example of a lesser noticeable contradiction that is very common in the minds and lives of many adult children of abusive parents: a child is repeatedly yelled at by a parent, year after year, scared, startled every time his parent’s voice goes up in volume and every time any anger registers on his parent’s face.. the parent sees that fear but continues to yell. Even when the child begs: please don’t yell.. the parent keep yelling. Fast forward, the child is now adult, visiting with his parent, still feeling uncomfortable but visiting anyway because otherwise he feels guilty. He feels guilty to not visit because he says to himself:  my parent loved me all along, he/ she always did the best he could.

    What I italicized above is a contradiction and a delusion (the two words you used in regard to the woman you met at the retreat), and this delusion keeps the adult child unwell. Truth is that when a parent yells at his/ her child repeatedly, seeing how scared the child, hearing the child beg.. and yet, keeps yelling, he/ she is not loving the child and is not doing his/ her best.

    Healing is about confronting significant contradictions and delusions, such that I mentioned in the example above. It is about seeing reality as it is, including the inconvenient truths.

    Regarding “everything is love”, you wrote: “she uses this phrase as her shield against everything bad happening”- what do you say to yourself to shield yourself from the bad things that already happened (?)

    Your stated objective for this thread, comment and question were: “I want to understand what happened, learn and move on… maybe I just got involved with the wrong/ very unstable person. This is my problem.. what do you think?”

    I think that she is a very unstable person, and I think that communicating with her further is a bad idea.  You can’t possibly have a healthy relationship with “an emotionally very disturbed person”, such as this woman. She needs professional help. A competent professional is trained at how to deal and manage attachment to a patient. You are not trained that way, so.. if you try to be her “therapist” she will drag you down. (It will also harm you to continue to be her silent audience).

    Not only are you not trained to be a therapist, you also have an excessive difficulty managing attachment to people (“I can’t easily detach myself from anyone I care about, be it a healthy or unhealthy relationship. I feel guilty”)- therefore, the more you communicate with her, the sicker you will get.

    I think that the motivation to communicate with her so far may has been what I suggested above: to get a glimpse into yourself, into what’s inside the walls you built around yourself. I think that it is a good idea to see more and more of what’s inside your walls in the context of psychotherapy, which you began attended.

    anita

    #374087
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this post and look into my previous comments to have a better understanding of what I say and write. I truly appreciate it.

    What you wrote is very interesting. I never thought the reason why i was so interested in her was because i wanted to see myself through her…it makes so much sense now.

    To be honest, the moment we met, she told me she was abused as a child. I never questioned how, and first thought maybe it was sexual abuse. And thats one of the reasons why I was feeling very guilty for not wanting to talk to her much during the retreat-because i could see she was deeply disturbed and needs professional help.  Later forced myself to for 2 reasons-to learn to be more open and find out about the nature of this abuse.  From my deductions later I realised her mom was depressed and i think she used to hit her as a kid until she turned 15.

    What is really interesting about what you wrote Anita, and what made me really think as i already had a feeling about this- you are right, I am disturbed and have conflicts within me too but much less than her and through her I had a glimpse into my childhood trauma. The truth is my mom hit me a couple of times too when I was 13-14. I was an extremely rebellious child, I was damaging my health, was unmanageable at times, but I KNOW what she did was wrong. She shouldn’t have dealt with it that way. My mom was also a strict mother. This whole thing had an impact on my sister too, she was really scared of my mom. Of-course I know what my mother did was utterly wrong, and this is not me justifying her behaviour- but I am also intelligent enough to know and feel that at the same time she loves her children more than ANYTHING and ANYONE in the world. She gave everything to us, she constantly sacrificed herself, her wellbeing and her health for us. She was violent at times, yes, but her 30 and 40 year old self lived through extremely difficult times emotionally, financially and she had a very difficult life unfortunately. So even though I was a sensitive child and was affected by how she handled my teen self,  I forgave her long long ago because I know nobody will ever love me as much as my mother does.

    Now back to the girl and her mother trauma which is much deeper than mine, I realised through knowing her so closely what is behind all her current and imagined problems in life- she never felt loved by her mother. So she goes around causing more trouble and disturbance to others and says everything is love. She imagines this guy is the only person who loved her and clings to him for the life of hers, she even said if she owes being non binary to her trauma-she is thankful. I think even her whole gender confusion started because her mom was never motherly or has much feminine qualities.

    The difference between us is that I had much milder version of childhood trauma and I knew and still know very well my mom loved and protected me. She never had that-this is what caused my heart bleed for her, because I understand this is the worst kind of pain in life, when you know your own mother didn’t want you or love you. The conflict within me is that she often made me angry too as her behaviour is full of really obvious and subtle contradictions that I don’t dare to talk about.

    Another disturbing thing about her and the fact that she cant differentiate between pain or silly things and how she processes difficulties- she feels attacked by things, becomes a “victim”, really suffers, then she says she lets go and is thankful-and everything is love. She did this to me and others multiple times. so i saw this pattern of disturbing behaviour. For example, during our retreat she was the only person who drove to a wrong location because she never bothered to check in with organisers (as she explained later-this is because she trusts everyone), she arrived really tired and exhausted. We were sharing a room which was super overheated at night, and I opened the window at night. She woke up in the morning crying and suffering. i asked her if she was ok, even though we were supposed to keep silence. She didn’t say anything to me, continued crying. Fast forward to the end of our retreat she messages me- “you really helped her and I am thankful for that.” I thought this was because i listened to her for hours talk. Turns out I helped her by “making it difficult for her” and making the room cold at night. thanks to this she suffered as she was so tired because of this next day as she couldn’t sleep. but was able to let go and she is thankful. Surely, this is not normal. Instead of seeing the truth of what happened-that she drove to the wrong location, didn’t bother getting right information, didn’t talk to me or close the window herself, she chose to “suffer”, be a victim and then “let go” and be “thankful”. Oh and everything is love.

    I have seen this kind of patterns a lot in her and my reactions were always anger and then disappointment in her and myself. We stopped talking naturally thankfully.  I just could no longer be her silent audience and when she asked me why I wouldn’t be comfortable sharing my partner or be in open relationship, i told her why I dont think this is ok for me. Also, in our group chat, she messaged, she feels disconnected from group conversations, which were actually quite interesting to most- questions of free will, life, music, sports, carpets, art, etc. The truth is she was only interested in discussing trans topics and documentaries, not much else.

    But I have a feeling she will contact me again in the future, and i want to have a way to be able not to engage too much with her. I don’t believe in just blocking or ignoring people. She definitely has no guilt of doing it to others, but I am not that kind of person. So hopefully I will be able to deal with it if she contacts me again.

    Back to me and why this whole affair touched me on so many different levels. Relationships are best ways to learn about ourselves, they are true mirrors where we see ourselves. Through this relationship, i think i was able to glimpse into my own issues. You mentioned in the other posts, you had an OCD as a kid too and you are over it. How did you get over it?

    The problem is my therapy will start in 3 months time ( it is free and i am on the waiting list). And there are so many things and traumas that could have led to my OCD issues in my childhood. I was born in the Soviet Union and until i was about 12 were quite difficult and violent times for my country/people and obviously my family. There were people dying, kids disappearing, my people were through a genocide. At school, when I was a kid there were teaching us of violence and wars committed to us as part of our history. I saw graphic and violent images that no kid should see. Then as a kid, i had a lot of accidents (dislocated my shoulder, bit on a glass, fell down the stairs, etc.) My parents loved and protected me beyond possible. But they were affected by these difficult times themselves, there were days when we had no money for bread, for example. I never acknowledged this but so many things that shaped me happened at my childhood. My huge fortune and gratitude was that I know I was deeply loved and wanted as a child. This is what helped me get through it.

    But I still would like to know whats that fear. I noticed i cant watch violent news, horror movies or deeply psychological thrillers. I am really sensitive to it. For example, the other day i read in the news how Uyghur people in China are behind subjected to horrific crimes and how one survivor was talking about what they do to women in concentration camps. I read this article and I couldn’t sleep properly that night. It disturbed me so much. Intrusive images I have are violent in nature. Maybe it is somehow connected to my sensitivity to violence.

    My OCD takes many forms and it has been part of me since i was a kid. Hair picking, hand washing, sanitising, negative thinking patterns and now rarely and sometimes violent images. It is manageable, but i would like to face it. i am ready for it now.

    How did you overcome your OCD?

    Thank you so much for all your help, Anita!

    #374088
    Nar
    Participant

    Also to answer your question on what I tell myself to explain pain that happened to me. I don’t have a mantra that I repeat to myself  such as everything is love, but my pattern is this- I get angry, then I beat myself up for getting angry, I feel sadness and disappointment. Then  I blame myself. I always blame myself for everything bad happening. There is a difference between taking a responsibility and blaming yourself. I don’t simply acknowledge i am responsible for all my actions. But I blame myself, beat myself up for what I did or didn’t do. Maybe I even think I deserved it. Remuneration, sorrow, guilt. I am very harsh with myself.

    About parents not always treating and loving children the way they deserve. I realised there is a difference between not wanting your children and actually not always being able to love them the way they need to be loved. Almost every parent is guilty of the second, but the first is horrible. No child should be born into this world knowing that they aren’t wanted or ever loved, thats how monsters are created.

    I see the difference. I can see past my childhood traumas and am not engaging in saying my parents were always perfect with me, but overall they both love me more than they love themselves and “served” me in the ways that most parents wouldn’t. I always felt like i have this huge mountain behind me protecting me and loving me and its my mom and dad. That’s what I am deeply grateful for in life. They are only imperfect humans just like all of us are. And there is a difference between being imperfect and monstrous.

    #374094
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    You are welcome. I think that this will be another long post. Please take your time reading this, some of it may be very unpleasant for you to read. If at any time you feel significantly distressed, please stop reading: it is okay for you to stop reading at any time, and it is okay for you to not reply to me again, if you so choose.

    In your various posts, you shared about the woman you met at the retreat the following (the bold feature is my addition):  “90% of our talks were around her and her life problems”, that “she has a strong tendency to victimise herself and be a ‘martyr’“. She does not see herself as causing much of her suffering, being “completely oblivious to the consequences of her actions”, seeing “external evil forces or people” as the cause of her suffering, “she feels attacked by things, becomes a ‘victim‘, really suffers, then she says she lets go and is thankful”.

    You gave an example: as a consequence of failing to check in with the organisers of the retreat, she arrived to the the room shared by people attending the retreat tired and exhausted. The room was overheated, so you opened a window. In the morning, she woke up “crying and suffering”. Fast forward to the end of the retreat, she sent you a message: “you really helped me and I am thankful for that”.

    You thought that she was referring to you helping her by having listened to her talk for hours, but you found out that what she meant was that you “helped her by ‘making it difficult for her’ and making the room cold at night, thanks to this she suffered and she was so tired because of this next day as she couldn’t sleep, but was able to let go and she is thankful. Oh and everything is love”-

    – My thoughts: talking about love, what she did in the example you gave has nothing to do with love, but with hate: she tried to make you feel bad, to make you feel guilty, to make you suffer, and she did it in a passive-aggressive way. She wanted you to look backward in time and feel bad for allegedly harming her on that first night of the retreat and the next day. She kept this alleged harm a secret for so many days only to reveal it as a thank-you, sort of giving you a kiss on the cheek and punching you in the face, all at the same time.

    Here is what one website, family today. com says on the topic: What is Martyr Complex: “Do you know this kind of person? He or she always seems to ‘suffer‘ for the greater good. They’re constantly sacrificing their own happiness and fulfillment for others, making sure that everyone has what they need, except themselves. And they do it willingly and selflessly- so long as everyone around them knows it… – the martyr.

    “A martyr complex, or victim complex, is a form of passive-aggressive behavior and is an unhealthy way of trying to gain attention, approval, and ultimately their way… Ultimately these people are emotionally draining and can create a very unhealthy dynamic within their relationships… because they have little confidence in their own real value as a person, they find ways to manipulate circumstances and other people into seeing them as a victim requiring their attention and sympathy…

    “Most martyrs keep a mental list of the hardships they have endured. And with only minor reluctance, if any, they are able to tell you all the wrongs they have suffered, all at the hands of others. Accepting responsibility for their lives and any set-backs is immensely difficult, if not impossible”.

    Next, I will quotes from your two recent posts about other people in your life and add my thoughts-

    This is what you wrote about your mother: “my mom hit me a couple of times too when I was 13-14.. My mom was.. a strict mother…She was violent at times”.

    About your sister: “she was really scared of my mom”.

    About yourself: “I was an extremely rebellious child, I was damaging my health, was unmanageable at times.. I KNOW what she did was wrong.. she loves her children more than ANYTHING and ANYONE in the world. She gave everything to us, she constantly sacrificed herself, her wellbeing and her health for us... her 30 and 40 year old self lived through extremely difficult times emotionally, financially and she had a very difficult life unfortunately… I know nobody will ever love me as much as  my mother does”.

    If you noticed, in the paragraph above, I placed  what you shared regarding your mother following what you shared about yourself. The reason for that is that your mother had a huge affect on your developing mind as a child. Your empathy for her was intense. You saw her as someone who has suffered so greatly for you/ for her children, a woman who sacrificed herself for others.. a martyr.

    Did she tell you that she sacrificed her life for you, did she tell you how much she suffered.. for you, and did she tell you that you were guilty for repaying her sacrifice with being “an extremely rebellious child” and “unmanageable”?

    Is this the source of your guilt?

    Back to family today. com: on martyrs: “Take, for instance, the mother who allowed her life to become strictly about her children.. she utilizes guilt and a passive-aggressive approach to force her children to value and need her. She may.. reiterate all of the many things she did for them at the expense of her own life and happiness”.

    Whether your mother has been a martyr or not, it is not true that she always loved and protected you (“my mom loved and protected me… I always felt like I have this huge mountain behind me protecting me and loving me and its my mom and dad”)- when she was violent against you– she did not love you, and she did not protect you.. from herself. During those times, you were very scared and very troubled.

    Similar to you, I was born and raised in a country where violence was commonplace, and I too regularly saw graphic images of real-life, horrific violence (on the news/ documentaries on TV). A threat of war and terrorism was an everyday reality. And yet, what scared me most- by far- was my mother’s violence, verbal and physical.

    You shared that your intrusive images “are violent in nature”. My original fear (thoughts and images) was that my mother will die, it was an intense fear and the source of my many OCD compulsions, rituals I did to prevent her from dying.. ex., if I turned around three times this way, and then three times the other way, then she will be okay.

    “my pattern is this- I get angry, then I beat myself up for getting angry… I blame myself for everything bad happening… beat myself up for what I did or didn’t do. Maybe I even think I deserved it. Ruminating, sorrow, guilt. I am very  harsh with myself”-

    – this was my experience growing up and during most of my life: heavy duty guilt as a consequence of my mother being… a heavy-duty martyr.

    “I realise there is a difference between not wanting your children and actually not always being able to love them the way they need to be loved. Almost every parent is guilty of the second, but the first is horrible“-

    – when “not always being able to love them the way they need to be loved” means (1) to yell at the child, to hit the child, to threaten the child and whatnot… it feels horrible to the child, and when it means (2) to heavily guilt-trip a child.. that too feels horrible to the child.

    “They (parents) are only imperfect humans just like all of us are”- true, but too many parents are .. way too imperfect. Children pay a heavy price for having parents that are way too imperfect.. and unless we heal in adulthood, our children pay the price and their children.

    You asked me: “How did you overcome your OCD?”- it was a long, long process, too much to post about in one post. If you are still reading, and if you reply, I can answer this question over time. A part answer for now, relating to the topic of mothers: I finally saw my mother as she is, the good, the bad and all in between, the whole picture. When I did, I understood who I was at the beginning of my life: not the bad, guilty, faulty, inferior child I thought I was, but a good, innocent, worthy child.

    * Having been “an extremely rebellious child” and “unmanageable”, if you were that as a child- it is a consequence of having been mistreated and/ or emotionally neglected, not anything that you are guilty for.

    anita

     

    #374296
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Hope you had a good weekend! Thank you once again for taking the time to reply back to me, understand my thinking through my writing and also thank you for sharing such personal details about yourself. I know it might not be so easy.

    I do not find anything written here difficult to read or process at all. It rarely scares me to look deep into my mind and dive into my own or others’ psyche, as well past or conditioning.

    I read the article you were referring to, it is very interesting, thanks for sharing. What you shared about the girl I tried to befriend is very true and I recognised the fact that she has a “victim” complex about 2 months ago. I also re-acknowledged it again about 2 weeks ago. Why did i continue my involvement with her? Well, firstly, I was arrogant enough to think I wouldn’t fall into her trap. Secondly, I thought I could handle her.

    From all this affair, what I didn’t want to accept is that she manipulated me into feeling sorry for her, feeling guilty for what i said or did. Didn’t want to accept the fact that she used me to offload her mental and emotional issues. It made me feel very bad and disturbed that I was  spending time with my family who I haven’t seen for half a year during the holiday season and she was sending me  these difficult messages to read about herself. She didn’t seem to want to understand that it is not ok to load someone like this especially when they tell you they are spending some quality time with their family members.

    Other thoughts that ran through my head in relation to this- “why did  I feel like she used me? Who is being a victim now ? Why am I sensitive to being used? Why did I have to feel used? ”

    I thought about why I didn’t want to accept this fact. The fact that I felt used, and the answer is that it is my issue, not hers. I am certain she is doing what she did to me to most people, the fact that she is not deliberately manipulating people, doesn’t mean she is not causing harm, but does make it easier to feel compassionate towards her… And this is not me saying people are all good deep down, and believing into the goodness of everyone’s hearts- God NO. Most people most times are evil and selfish, including myself.

    The fact is she did manipulate me knowingly or unknowingly doesn’t matter, but why did I have to feel used and manipulated? Why am I so sensitive to it? Why am I so impacted? This is whats interesting and once I fully understand why i will be able to close my involvement with people who have victim complexes. Obviously, as you might have guessed by now, she is not the only person who did this me. I was in a very difficult marriage with a true psychopath who manipulated and used me left, right center without feeling any compassion or regret whatsoever. Luckily, I was able to recover from all the mental harm he caused and forgave him.

    On a different note, I am almost certain I have guilt complex myself. I am a kind of person who feels a lot of sorrow and guilt. And this may be one of the reasons why i easily fall into the trap of people with martyr complex. I thought about why would someone feel so much sorrow and guilt? And I think there is a connection between Anger, Sorrow and Guilt. Anger is often a reaction to something which we didn’t understand fully, or losing control over something. Sorrow and Guilt are almost inseparable for me. And it must be the way i am somehow programmed/conditioned. The way I learnt how to react to what happened in life.

    So I thought “when was the first time I felt a lot of sorrow and guilt in my life?”- It was when my grandmother passed away and i was a 10yr old kid who didn’t understand what happened. She was living with us suffering greatly from diabetes, was blind and lost both her legs. I stayed alone with her at home during the day, she would ask me to make her tea or help her out, but I didn’t care to help. She was begging me sometimes to help and I was this cruel kid who often didn’t care to help. So this is the source of my sorrow and guilt. When my grandmother passed away, I locked myself up in a bathroom and cried a lot feeling a lot of sorrow and guilt. I think I never forgave myself for how I treated her. And I know I was just a kid, but I could never forgive myself. So it almost feels like these same feelings of sorrow and guilt for what I did followed me throughout my life in almost all of my relationships….

    On the Mother topic-

    I am sorry you were so scared of your mother. And that she was verbally and physically violent. It is insane how much our mothers shape us  to be in the ways that we are. Both my sister and I were scared of my mom too. She was harsh, but she doesn’t have a martyr complex. Her issues are different. She never made us feel like she sacrificed something for our sake, or was verbally violent at all.

    In fact the opposite. She is a very successful woman career-wise and in all her other aspects of life and never told us we owe her anything. My parents gave too much to us and really overprotected and spoiled us in a way. Why do I know? Because I left when i was 17 and my sister remained with my parents.  She is a 30 years old mother now, and up to this day she doesn’t fully comprehend how much our parents have helped us in life financially and morally. I think it ruined us as well but in different ways, we are both too spoiled and don’t want to work too hard for things in life. Overprotection is really unhealthy . It is all about finding that right balance I think. Kids must feel protected, but never overprotected.

    I think I understood where my unhealthy attachment issues are coming from though and it is related to my mother. I already mentioned she was strict with us too never verbally, she was physical only very few times-i wouldn’t call it abuse. but what she did and still does -she gives us “silent treatment” and withdrawal. Which is just as bad I think. She would get upset about something and stop talking to us. Thats been her way of punishment. And you are right, kids especially those who are very sensitive like me and my sister were, don’t process such behaviour well. I know it made me feel detached and i was looking for any way to feel “loved” again by my mother. So here comes the connection to feeling sorrow and guilt again. Also the connection to maybe why i can be clingy or easily feel deprived of love and attention… seek right attachment, but end up with unhealthy attachments.

    My deep compassion for my mother wasn’t always there. Up to I was 26 years old, i didn’t have much compassion for her at all. It came much later when i was able to see why she was so strict with us, and yes sometimes she did us wrong with her strictness or withdrawal, but she also did much more goodness that harm.

    Our parents/ childhood/certain events later on in life do shape us to be a certain way, but life is often about being able to understand how it all happened and forgive those who hurt us. We can break away from our pasts, and we can only stop living in the prison of our childhood or adulthood or even in the prison of any event, only when we fully understand and process what happened. Until there is no full understanding, there can be no compassion or love.

    I hope you were able to forgive your mother who hurt you.

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 2 weeks ago by Nar.
    #374298
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Hope you had a good weekend! Thank you once again for taking the time to reply back to me, understand my thinking through my writing and also thank you for sharing such personal details about yourself. I know it might not be so easy.

    I do not find anything written here difficult to read or process at all. It rarely scares me to look deep into my mind and dive into my own or others’ psyche, as well past or conditioning.

    I read the article you were referring to, it is very interesting, thanks for sharing. What you shared about the girl I tried to befriend is very true and I recognised the fact that she has a “victim” complex about 2 months ago. I also re-acknowledged it again about 2 weeks ago. Why did i continue my involvement with her? Well, firstly, I was arrogant enough to think I wouldn’t fall into her trap. Secondly, I thought I could handle her.

    From all this affair, what I didn’t want to accept is that she manipulated me into feeling sorry for her, feeling guilty for what i said or did. Didn’t want to accept the fact that she used me to offload her mental and emotional issues. It made me feel very bad and disturbed that I was  spending time with my family who I haven’t seen for half a year during the holiday season and she was sending me  these difficult messages to read about herself. She didn’t seem to want to understand that it is not ok to load someone like this especially when they tell you they are spending some quality time with their family members.

    Other thoughts that ran through my head in relation to this- “why did  I feel like she used me? Who is being a victim now ? Why am I sensitive to being used? Why did I have to feel used? ”

    I thought about why I didn’t want to accept this fact. The fact that I felt used, and the answer is that it is my issue, not hers. I am certain she is doing what she did to me to most people, the fact that she is not deliberately manipulating people, doesn’t mean she is not causing harm, but does make it easier to feel compassionate towards her… And this is not me saying people are all good deep down, and believing into the goodness of everyone’s hearts- God NO. Most people most times are evil and selfish, including myself.

    The fact is she did manipulate me knowingly or unknowingly doesn’t matter, but why did I have to feel used and manipulated? Why am I so sensitive to it? Why am I so impacted? This is whats interesting and once I fully understand why i will be able to close my involvement with people who have victim complexes. Obviously, as you might have guessed by now, she is not the only person who did this me. I was in a very difficult marriage with a true psychopath who manipulated and used me left, right center without feeling any compassion or regret whatsoever. Luckily, I was able to recover from all the mental harm he caused and forgave him.

    On a different note, I am almost certain I have guilt complex myself. I am a kind of person who feels a lot of sorrow and guilt. And this may be one of the reasons why i easily fall into the trap of people with martyr complex. I thought about why would someone feel so much sorrow and guilt? And I think there is a connection between Anger, Sorrow and Guilt. Anger is often a reaction to something which we didn’t understand fully, or losing control over something. Sorrow and Guilt are almost inseparable for me. And it must be the way i am somehow programmed/conditioned. The way I learnt how to react to what happened in life.

    So I thought “when was the first time I felt a lot of sorrow and guilt in my life?”- It was when my grandmother passed away and i was a 10yr old kid who didn’t understand what happened. She was living with us suffering greatly from diabetes, was blind and lost both her legs. I stayed alone with her at home during the day, she would ask me to make her tea or help her out, but I didn’t care to help. She was begging me sometimes to help and I was this cruel kid who often didn’t care to help. So this is the source of my sorrow and guilt. When my grandmother passed away, I locked myself up in a bathroom and cried a lot feeling a lot of sorrow and guilt. I think I never forgave myself for how I treated her. And I know I was just a kid, but I could never forgive myself. So it almost feels like this same feelings of sorrow and guilt for what I did followed me throughout my life in almost all of my relationships….

    On the Mother topic-

    I am sorry you were so scared of your mother. And that she was verbally and physically violent. It is insane how much our mothers shape us  to be in the ways that we are. Both my sister and I were scared of my mom too. She was harsh, but she doesn’t have a martyr complex. Her issues are different. She never made us feel like she sacrificed something for our sake, or was verbally violent at all.

    In fact the opposite. She is a very successful woman career-wise and in all her other aspects of life and never told us we owe her anything. My parents gave too much to us and really overprotected and spoiled us in a way. Why do I know? Because I left when i was 17 and my sister remained with my parents.  She is a 30 years old mother now, and up to this day she doesn’t fully comprehend how much our parents have helped us in life financially and morally. I think it ruined us as well but in different ways, we are both too spoiled and don’t want to work too hard for things in life. Overprotection is really unhealthy . It is all about finding that right balance I think. Kids must feel protected, but never overprotected.

    I think I understood where my unhealthy attachment issues are coming from though and it is related to my mother. I already mentioned she was strict with us too never verbally, she was physical only very few times-i wouldn’t call it abuse. but what she did and still does -she gives us “silent treatment” and withdrawal. Which is just as bad I think. She would get upset about something and stop talking to us. Thats been her way of punishment. And you are right, kids especially those who are very sensitive like me and my sister were, don’t process such behaviour well. I know it made me feel detached and i was looking for any way to feel “loved” again by my mother. So here comes the connection to feeling sorrow and guilt again. Also the connection to maybe why i can be clingy or easily feel deprived of love and attention… seek right attachment, but end up with unhealthy attachments.

    My deep compassion for my mother wasn’t always there. Up to I was 26 years old, i didn’t have much compassion for her at all. It came much later when i was able to see why she was so strict with us, and yes sometimes she did us wrong with her strictness or withdrawal, but she also did much more goodness than harm.

    Our parents/ childhood/certain events later on in life do shape us to be a certain way, but life is often about being able to understand how it all happened and forgive those who hurt us. And looking into why we got hurt, i think is often a good way to start. It is within us to heal. We can break away from our pasts, and we can only stop living in the prison of our childhood or adulthood or even in the prison of any event, only when we fully understand and process what happened. Until there is no full understanding, there can be no compassion or love.

    I hope you were able to forgive your mother who hurt you.

    #374304
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    You are welcome. I am amazed by how empathetic, gracious and kind (and intelligent) you are- thank you.

    The questions you asked yourself regarding the woman at the retreat and the answers I am volunteering to you: “why did I feel like she used me?“- because she really did use you to “offload her mental and emotional issues”, to make herself feel better by making you feel worse.

    Who is being the victim now?“- in the context of you and this woman, she was the victimizer and you were the victim. In the context of this woman and her mother, her mother was the victimizer and she (her daughter) was the victim.

    Why am I sensitive to being used?”- everyone, or almost everyone is sensitive to being used. Some people have accepted lives where they are being used, and they are sort of numb to it, or they let it slide, like oil on Teflon (people with what I call the Teflon Affect), but these people are not healthy and they do suffer because they are aware that they are being taken advantage of.

    Why did I have to feel used?“- because you were used and if you didn’t feel used, you would not have the awareness and the opportunity to avoid being used in the future. Emotions have purposes: hunger leads you to eat, fear leads you to run away.. feeling used leads you to avoid being used in the future.

    *It is possible to feel hunger when not needing food, to feel fear when not in real danger and to feel used when not, therefore we sometimes need to re-evaluate situations before choosing how to react to them (this is done in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy).

    “Most people most of the times are evil and selfish, including myself”- as far as considering yourself “evil and selfish”, I see it here, a memory from when you were 10: “She (your grandmother who lost her legs and was blind as a consequence of diabetes) would ask me to make her tea or help her out, but I didn’t care to help. She was begging me sometimes to help and I was this cruel kid who often didn’t care to help. So this is the source of my sorrow and guilt.. I never forgave myself for how I treated her.

    You shared about your mother: “what she did and still does- she gives us ‘silent treatment’ and withdrawal.. She would get upset about something and stop talking to us. That’s been her way of punishment”, and you concluded with: “life is often about being able to understand how it happened and forgive those who hurt us.. It is within us to heal. We can break away from our pasts.. only when we fully understand and process what happened”.

    For better understanding of what happened, I ask:

    (1) You shared regarding your lack of compassion for your mother: “Up to .. 26 years old, I didn’t have much compassion for her at all”- what did you feel for your mother for the first 25 years of your life?

    (2) Earlier you shared about your mother: “she constantly sacrificed herself, her well being and her health for us”-

    Is or has your mother become physically ill because of what she did for her children, and if so, what is the nature of her illness, and how was it caused?

    When and how did you become aware of her illness?

    How else did she sacrifice herself for her children and how did you become aware of her sacrifices?

    anita

    #374517
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Thank you for your kind words, but i am no angel. I can only hope to be more empathetic and less angry than i am.

    It is very interesting what you shared about our sensitivity to being used. And that our emotions have a purpose and I guess self-preservation instinct is there for a reason. It is easier to deal with hunger than with feeling used. My problem with it was that in the past due to my past traumas with my ex and best friend, I became overprotective of myself and didn’t want to be too open to new people. Or rather care too much for other people. This is the wall I was referring to previously. I guess it is important to learn to open up at the right time to the right people. Be aware of what happened, learn from it but without getting paranoid and carrying it over to future relationships.

    About self-protection, I had this feeling in relation to the girl I tried to befriend -“if you are drowning, I want to help and i can offer you my hand, but I won’t let you pull me in with you”.

    I think there is also a relation between my OCD issues and how I process difficult emotions or my relationship issues. I was recommended to start CBT but it is only due in 3 months and for now i was told to keep a diary of my intrusive thoughts. The violent image I talked about appears very rarely actually. I haven’t had it in 2 months. I think it is the various forms of OCD which has been a very strong part of me since i was a kid. When it comes to relationships, it appears in the form of thinking patterns, things i said repeating themselves over and over in my head, or emotions repeating.

    Sometimes i think maybe it is better that these thoughts or emotions are repeating as I am able to see something i didn’t before. Maybe it is better to be tortured by it than forgetting all about it and moving to the next “mischief”. The reason why i am bringing this up is because this problem with the girl bothered me for a month now and finally a few days ago I was able to let go of it and make peace with how I felt. I stopped talking to her a month ago but the problem still bothered me. After weeks, days and hours of difficult thoughts, emotions, doubts, it dropped away. Thank you for helping me to understand myself in relation to this issue as well. I am truly grateful!

    Could this anxiety from thinking patterns/ problems processing difficult emotions be part of OCD too?

    About my mother, this is really interesting area to explore. As I know our relationship with our mothers or the lack of it is probably what shapes us most to be who we are today.

    To answer your questions

    “(1) You shared regarding your lack of compassion for your mother: “Up to .. 26 years old, I didn’t have much compassion for her at all”- what did you feel for your mother for the first 25 years of your life?”

    -My mother was always quite a strict and austere mother. It was like she was a “bad cop” and my dad “good cop”. She thought it was important to be strict with us because of cultural reasons. She was scared she had 2 girls who might go “astray”, unfortunately my culture and especially when i was growing was a bit chauvinistic, and young girls had a lot of judgement. So she was strict, but she also criticised and controlled us a lot. Up to i was a teen i had feelings of strong attachment and fear towards her. After 15, i just rebelled against the control. I wanted to pluck my eyebrows, wear whatever i want and put on make up. she tried to explain why i shouldn’t, i wasn’t interested in that. so she forbade, it didn’t work either. i just started hating her. Then i begged her to send me abroad to study and at 17 I was sent to the UK to study. it was extremely challenging in the beginning, but she was there to help. help me move to a new place for example. From 17-25 I didn’t trust my mom too much to tell her about my personal life, i didn’t hate her any more, just didn’t trust she would understand me. From 26 I started telling her limited information. When I got married, she really disapproved of my marriage but still supported me. So when my marriage fell apart due to my ex being a psycho, I realised my mom may not always have the right things to say, but she has certain wisdom about people that i should sometimes care to listen to at least.

    “(2) Earlier you shared about your mother: “she constantly sacrificed herself, her well being and her health for us”-

    Is or has your mother become physically ill because of what she did for her children, and if so, what is the nature of her illness, and how was it caused?

    When and how did you become aware of her illness?

    How else did she sacrifice herself for her children and how did you become aware of her sacrifices?”

     

    About this, i can just say that she is a true workaholic and she totally overworkes herself to the detriment of her own health and her family’s wellbeing. She criticised us a lot too because she is addicted to work or addicted to cleanliness. She is still very controlling up to this day even though we are adults, she still tries to control and blame us when she really overworks and burns herself completely out.

    But she did do a lot. For example, when my sister gave birth she couldnt look after her new born child due to bad thrombosis. my mother looked after my niece at nights and went to give lectures at the university she worked at in the mornings. she saw it as her “duty”. to be honest, i was surprised how she never brought it up. She blames us for much smaller things, like not cleaning after ourselves, or washing dishes, or “listening to her when she knows better”. but she never said how for 6months she genuinely suffered looking after a new born child who was her granddaughter.  I guess this is why I feel the compassion that i do. Deep down i know how caring she is, despite all shortcomings.

    then it was very courageous of her to be able to convince my father to let me go at the age of 17 to a very foreign country and live all alone. i can’t believe she could let me go for the sake of my future. Considering how “strict” my culture was, how many ways i could have failed my family, she trusted that i wouldn’t and only at 17. I was such a kid who hasn’t spent 1 day alone without my family and never been outside my country. Also, my parents were not rich. they actually indeed let go of their own little wishes for our studies and comfort. for example instead of buying a new car or new flat, they saved for our future. I know most parents help, but my partner whose parents were very helpful as well says my parents help was too much. It was almost limitless. they have this mentality “all for children”. I noticed this when I grew up and could see how my peers’ parents were not as helping as mine. Basically, my sister and i have a comfortable life today at the expense of their discomfort. and in a way, we do owe a lot to them.

    Seeing all this, makes me feel very lucky and I know they deeply care for me despite all shortcomings. But it doesn’t mean those shortcomings didn’t affect me. This is why i am able to look at it very compassionately and lovingly though. So i am not sweeping under the rug the fact that my mom was controlling, criticising, strict, because of her silent treatments i have attachment issues. i am not.  that up to this day my sister doesn’t trust her to tell her about anything personal. but i also know she is a true mother (not good or bad but true) who is capable of deep care and love that i probably will never have from anyone else and can just hope to be able to offer one day to my own child or someone else without too many shortcomings.

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 2 weeks ago by Nar.
    #374529
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Nar:

    You are welcome. I will respond to what you shared in regard to your mother and your relationship with her part by part, responding to one sentence before I read the next:

    “Up to I was a teen, I had feelings of strong attachment and fear towards her”- the combination of being physically dependent and attached to a parent and feeling fear of that same parent (Dependence/attachment + Fear) is what gives birth to obsessive thinking. When we fear someone whom we don’t depend on and to whom we are not attached- we get away from that person and the problem is solved. When we fear someone on whom we depend and to whom we are attached- we can’t and will not get away from, therefore- the problem is not solved.

    Problem is not solved-> we keep thinking about how to solve it aka obsessing.

    “I just started hating her. Then I begged her to send me abroad to study”- that’s you wanting to get away from her, because you feared her. Anger and hate often follows fear as a way to motivate us to get away from the person we fear.

    “at 17 I was sent to the UK to study”- you physically/ geographically got away.

    “From 17-25 I didn’t trust my mom too much to tell her about my personal life, I didn’t hate her any more, just didn’t trust she would understand me”- being physically away lessened your anger at her.

    “From 26 I started telling her limited information… she really disapproved of my marriage.. when my marriage fell apart due to my ex being a psycho, I realised my mom may not always have the right things to say, but she has certain wisdom about people that I should sometimes care to listen to at least”- seems like you realized that your mother was right when she disapproved of the marriage (and perhaps you realized that in comparison to your psycho husband, your mother was sane and wise), and you figured that you made a mistake when you didn’t listen to her before, and that better you listen to her now.

    “She is a true workaholic and she totally overworks herself to the detriment of her own health.. She criticised us a lot.. and blame us when she really overworks and burns herself completely out. But she did do a lot… looked after my niece at nights and went to give lectures at the university she worked at in the mornings… She blames us for.. not cleaning after ourselves.. but she never said how for 6 months she genuinely suffered looking after a new born child who was her granddaughter”-

    – you are making an assumption that she suffered taking care of her granddaughter, but maybe she did not suffer, or maybe she had so much joy taking care of the baby that it made up for the suffering.

    “Deep down I know how caring she is”- caring enough to work hard  but not caring enough to make you feel bad about it/ to blame you for her choice to work hard.

    “it was very courageous of her to be able to.. let me go at the age of 17 to a very foreign country and live all alone”- it was also a way for her to get a daughter who rebelled against her for two years to live away from her (“After 15, I just rebelled against the control… I just started hating her”).

    “instead of buying a new car or new flat, they saved for our future… they have this mentality ‘all for children’… she is a true mother.. who is capable of deep care and love that I probably will never have from anyone else, and can just hope to be able to offer one day to my own child or someone else”-

    – I agree that it is very unlikely that someone else in your life will work as much as your parents worked and use their hard earned money on you (and on your sister). Your mother has been a “true mother” in that respect- working hard for her children.

    “my sister and I have a comfortable life today at the expense of their discomfort, and in a way, we do owe a lot to them… Seeing all this, makes me feel very lucky… because of her silent treatments I have attachment issues… up to this day, my sister doesn’t trust her to tell her about anything personal”-

    (1) Regarding “I have a comfortable life today”- your life is comfortable in some ways, but uncomfortable in other ways:

    It is uncomfortable to suffer from OCD (“My OCD takes many forms and it has been part of me since I was a kid. Hair picking, hand washing, sanitising, negative thinking patterns…).

    It is uncomfortable to be very harsh on yourself, to repeatedly beat yourself up,  to blame yourself, to ruminate, and to feel a lot of guilt and sorrow (“I get angry, then I beat myself up for getting angry.. I always blame myself for everything bad happening.. I blame myself, beat myself up for what I did or didn’t do. Maybe I even think I deserve it. Rumination, sorrow, guilt. I am very harsh with myself… I am a kind of person who feels a lot of sorrow and guilt”).

    (2) Regarding: “I have a comfortable life today at the expense of their discomfort“- I am guessing that your mother was more comfortable to spend money on her daughters than she was to spend money on herself. Some people don’t spend money on themselves because they don’t feel comfortable doing so. Pay attention in the future: will she be spending money on herself when you and your sister no longer need her financial help.. or will she insist on spending more money on the two of you (?)

    (3) Regarding: “Seeing all this, makes me feel very lucky… because of her silent treatments I have attachment issues… up to this day, my sister doesn’t trust her to tell her about anything personal”-

    Imagine this: if you had  a mother who didn’t work that hard and did not blame you for her choices, a mother who  didn’t give you silent treatments.. you could have had a life free from “a lot of sorrow and guilt”, a life free from OCD, a life free from significant attachment issues and distrust… wouldn’t that be a very lucky life?

    anita

    #374731
    Nar
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    I had a feeling OCD is related to some trauma or most likely multiple traumas + fear of something. You say-

    “(Dependence/attachment + Fear) is what gives birth to obsessive thinking. When we fear someone whom we don’t depend on and to whom we are not attached- we get away from that person and the problem is solved. When we fear someone on whom we depend and to whom we are attached- we can’t and will not get away from, therefore- the problem is not solved”

    The issue is my OCD actually started developing strongly after 25. And i was already away from my mother for a long time. So leaving my family home didn’t solve the problem. I know this is somehow related to some fear i have, but I don’t know what fear. I remember even as a kid i was scared of a lot of things. Scared of darkness (which people say is normal), but I wanted to sleep with a light on. I remember my first nightmare and it was repeating in my dreams every night. Unfortunately, due to the times i was growing up, fear and uncertainty was something very common to most people, including my child self. I have a feeling my fear and OCD runs much deeper than just my mom’s behaviour or the way she brought me up.

    I can’t blame everything that happened to me and issues i developed on my mother. Of-course it would be a very lucky life had my mom managed to deal with her hardships better or perhaps even had none of them, therefore nothing would have reflected back on us. But this is not the life that I have. I don’t even think such a life is possible. And it is ok.

    My therapy is starting soon, and as i was keeping a diary I realise my OCD runs so deep and just takes so many forms. It is something that has  been a dominating factor in my life since mid 20s.  For example, in terms of thought patterns or objects of obsessions as i like to call it- you know already, i was obsessed with the problem about the girl i met at the retreat, as soon as this problem dropped-another thing came. Thinking obsessively over a new dilemma i have in my personal life. And it is NOT looking at it calmly, but literally being possessed by this issue. I feel like this thing inside me is just looking for something to latch on and obsess about.

    I am also a little bit addictive person, which doesn’t help if you have OCD. Oh it is so very complicated and i hope i can find my way out of this labyrinth.

     

    If there is any literature or anything at all you can recommend, would highly appreciate it! Thanks so much for your help, Anita! You are very kind 🙂

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by Nar.
    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by Nar.
    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by Nar.
    • This reply was modified 5 months, 1 week ago by Nar.
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