Would you like Catharsis?

 

You know from reading earlier blogs, that I obviously love the idea of catharsis.  I’ve not only seen it work in others, but love the technique to clean out my own darkness.  I was doing some research into Catharsis and came across several articles that said the Catharsis, before it was identified as way to clear the mind through writing, painting, drawing, photography etc., was considered conceptual.  The concept was of light being a purifier.  What a great concept!  Think of how the sun bring up our mood and light brightens a room; it makes sense that the concept of light opening up our thoughts and soul would be identified as catharsis.

What do you do for catharsis?  Writing is so cathartic; it helps us cleanse our minds, sharpen our focus, and clears the way for better things, so this is what I’m thinking:

Would you like to guest blog? You can be totally anonymous. The only requirements would be: that you trust me, (lol. not too much to ask?), I need to know who the author is as I can’t publish something on my blog that I’m not responsible for, that you only tell your own story, we can only share what we know for sure, that your writing is not sexually explicit.

If you want to publish under your name, I would certainly love to give you the credit, other than Anonymous 1, Anonymous 2, etc.  🙂  You could write a story, a poem, a song… This is your shot, to say what you need to say.  My e-mail is luanna77@hotmail.com, so if you are interested, e-mail me that you are interested or your “catharsis.”  If I don’t respond back within a couple of days, e-mail me again.  I don’t want you to get lost in my junk file!

I don’t have clue what to expect, but want you to have the chance to let in the light.  Be brave!

Peace…..

I’m the Winner

A family member, who had also been sexually abused said to me once, “Why are you doing ok and I’m not?”  I said to her, “I refuse to let him win.”  It seems like a flippant remark for me to make; I understand that, but that’s my answer. I don’t want to, I refuse to be beat.  Does that mean i always come in first, second or third?  No it sure doesn’t, but it means that’s what I’m shooting for.  You know I’m talking metaphorically..  I get beat many times, I’ve been married three times….divorce certainly isn’t any form of winning.  🙂  I have moments when I call my sister, or a daughter, or a son and talk through the latest crack in my heart.  I’m still in training maybe?

I can’t say that I don’t think about it much, because writing the blog, talking to other survivors, and reading the news keeps it on my mind almost every day.  My daughter said, “You know you can stop writing your blog any time you want?”  I know I can, it would be easier, than I could almost be one of those people who puts it safely away, and never thinks about it again.  But, for now, writing about surviving is part of my purpose; It’s how I win.  Maybe someday…….

I don’t know why some people survive easier than others; I just don’t know.  I spend a lot of time thinking about it.  I look at all survivors of abuse, racism, etc. and wonder how we can all move past it.  How do we forgive and move on?  There is so much hate in the world right now; maybe it’s always been there and social media exaggerates and abuses it.  I look at bullies and wonder, “What happened to you?”  I read horrible, spiteful things on Facebook and wonder the same thing.  This sense of helplessness and hopelessness that permeates our culture, with no relief in sight.  People who have been victimized, who just can’t seem to move away from being “the victim.”  I wonder how to help them, and have tried to help others almost until my own survival was compromised.

Why am I doing OK?, because I refuse to let him win.  I refuse….no one makes me feel this way…I’m in control of my feelings and I refuse.  I give you the right of refusal too.. 🙂 Take it and refuse to let him/her/them win.  Train to be a winner!!

Peace…

How to Spot Psychological Manipulators

Haven’t done this before, but I found this post so insightful.

MakeItUltra™

By Eric Perry, PhD-c


“You learn a lot about people when they don’t get what they want.” ~Anonymous

Like the waves that forcefully crash on the shore and later gracefully retreat, there is an ebb and flow to life. The seasons change and the flowers bloom, only to later wilt. We all give and take in our daily lives. Our interactions with one another are overall based on a healthy exchange of emotions, ideas and positive social interactions. There are some individuals, that like crashing waves have a disruptive influence in our lives. They seem only interested in profiting from the relationship and will give little or nothing in exchange. They use psychological manipulation to disguise their true intent.

Psychological manipulation is a type of social influence that uses deception, underhanded tactics and abuse in order to achieve the interests of the manipulator. The manipulator may use these tactics for…

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We Can Only Tell Our Stories

We all know stories; stories passed down through our families, fables of our cultures, gossip about the neighbor.  How do we know when we can share a story; have a teaching moment, use someone as an example either negative or positive?  This is the deal, unless it’s our story, we have to be very careful.  I like the “Do unto others as you would want them to do to you.”  I am pretty open with you about my story, but I don’t tell all.  Maybe I will someday, but that will be my choice…it’s my story.

A friend called me a couple of weeks ago and said, “I want to tell you a story,”. She began to share some family history and after about thirty minutes of discussion, she said “I think I know someone who may have been abused.  How do I get them to tell me?”  Well that’s the crux, you can’t get anyone to tell you anything. They need to be in the right place to trust and to share, and you might not be the person they tell their story too for any number of reasons.

Many people have the ability to bury their abuse and the pain of pulling it out might be too much for them.  We have to respect that.  Survivors are doing just that, surviving and their process is not ours to judge.  I’ve noticed that surviving is like an addiction in a way.  If you stay away from the subject, you’re good, even though it might be lurking in the background, but I can imagine that for some, dipping your toe in the past might cause you to jump in, unable to swim, only gulping water.  Many victims, who haven’t achieved survivor mode, feel guilty and ashamed, because they’ve been told that they are guilty and shameful.  Some have told their story and weren’t believed, or worse yet shunned for their openness.  Many have buried themselves in addiction of drugs, alcohol, food, or abusive behaviors leveled at themselves or even become abusers themselves.  So many stories buried behind covers, that for some reason or another can’t be opened.  It’s so sad.

“What can I do?” was her next question.  What a wonderful person, to ask “what can I do?”  You can set an example of not telling other’s stories.  Be a safe place, listen and be trustworthy.  It’s not enough to say your trustworthy, BE trustworthy.  Have you ever heard that saying that if someone has to tell you they are something, they probably aren’t?  We set the examples; we screw up, but we have to try hard to set the example.  I have had many people tell me their stories, after I have shared mine, or said I was writing this blog.  They feel that if I can trust them, they can trust me back.  I don’t forget their stories and only share them generically.

We we all need to tell our stories when we are ready, and for some people that may be never, but be ready……the person they choose to share it with, could be you.  It’s an honor to be that person.

Peace..

Let’s Be Honest

This is my 24th blog, almost 1/2 of a year’s worth, and while you might not like and/or agree with what I write; It’s from the heart and it’s honest.  I plan to continue that for the rest of the year. 🙂  After the CANDISC, my back and shoulders needed some work.  Acting like a spring, or a shock absorber for the training and actual ride, left my “slightly” middle aged body needing a visit to the shop.  My oldest son and his wife, in their wisdom, purchased a gift card for a massage, to someone who was reputed to “work you over really well”.  Hey! Something to look forward to! 😉

I went for my first visit and was treated to a back and shoulder massage that left me more sore than when I had gone in, but it was a good sore; the muscles have lost their knots sore.  Hopefully you know what I’m talking about.  I went back two weeks later to have my upper arms and shoulders worked on; same great results.  She was a bike rider too and we had a great rapport.  During the course of the conversation, she intimated that she was gay.  I followed that up asking about a partner and our conversation continued.

I shared with her that I had read the book “The Courage to Heal,” and while it didn’t suggest all Lesbians had been sexually assaulted, there were many testimonies, in the back of the book, from Lesbians who had been assaulted.  I asked her what she thought about that and she told me she had the firm mind set that 50% of Lesbians loved woman, maybe genetics, while 50% of them hated men.  I shared with her the story of a woman I knew who had been assaulted and said she just couldn’t trust men.  We are sexual beings, so if you don’t trust men because of abuse, you are still a human being with the urges and needs of a human.

Now some of you may have already quit reading, but please let me continue.  I’m not an authority on Gays, Lesbians, Bi’s etc.  I only know what I’ve read or have been told, and I am chastised pretty thoroughly, although less than one might think, by people who disagree with me.  I defend my gay friends and family and this is why.  Men and women who assault other men, woman, and children in this country are allowed to marry in churches and allowed to have children, and to serve in the armed forces.  Why do we think the victims (survivors) should bear the brunt of the burden, when the victimizers often go on about their lives with no consequences.

I am a Christian, but I am not God.  I can speculate on what God thinks, judges and on what judgement he/she will pass on to others, but I don’t know what that will be or look like.  I see all sinners, including myself and can only hope that there is mercy.  I hope there is mercy for your sins as well.  Some might say my argument is pretentious, based on experiences I know nothing about, but I would say, that in the social and political climate we are in right now…a climate that lacks the will to try and understand(from every perspective), that my trying to understand should be supported.  We all know someone who is gay, or who is different from us, in some way.  If you don’t see them, please look harder.

Peace….

 

 

You Would Know Four Things About Mom..

I taught a Freshman Seminar class at a community college a few years back.  One of the ways I had the students introduce themselves, was to tear toilet paper off of a roll, that I passed around the class.  They were to tear off the amount of paper they used, when they went to the bathroom.  They then had to share as many things about themselves, as there were squares of the tissue.  There would be embarrassed laughs and inevitably someone, thinking they were cute would tear off just one, while someone else would tear off 10.  It was a way to break the ice and it worked.  If my mother was in the class, she would have told us four things.

September 10th, 2017 was the third anniversary of Mom’s death.  I always say “my mom”, as if she had only me,  but there were four of us kids.  She had three daughters in a row, while making it perfectly clear, that her goal was a son, as my dad desperately wanted a son to farm with.  We were a conservative farm family, on the brink of poor, raised to love country and the Catholic Church.  Mom wasn’t raised Catholic, but joined when she married Dad.  That is the first thing you should know about her she loved the Catholic Church.

You would think after three years the unexpected jars on my heart would stop.  Days will go by and boom…. some unexpected trigger sends a feeling of loss over me, and I cry.  I cry because I miss what we could have been, friends.  Mom and I shared little until her death, we talked, but nothing from our souls.  We became closest the months before her death because the second thing you should know about her is she was very private.

Mom overcame much in her life by putting things in little compartments, only taking them out when she needed to and could handle them.  Some things never came out, but ate at her anyway.  If Mom ever loved you, she never stopped.  The third thing you should know is she was loyal to everyone she loved, except herself.

Mom’s last days were spent on Hospice.  They gave us books that told us the signs of her impending death and “helpful” hints; darkening of skin, talking to people that weren’t there and that we should make sure and tell her it was ok to go.  All of us did our best, to help her, support her, tell her we loved her, sing to her and recite the rosary.  Even those of us who had abandoned the Catholic Church, or felt like it had abandoned us, could still say the Rosary… She clung on to life, like I can’t imagine.  Everyone had told her it was ok, to go and be with Grandma and Aunty Anne, be she didn’t seem to hear.

I thought about it one night, her last night,  and realized something.  I went in and put my head by hers, told her how much I loved her, and that I would try my best to do what I could, what was expected of me for the family and then I told her, “Mom, you leave when you’re damn good and ready, and not a minute before.  We will be here as long as you need us to be.”    The fourth thing you should know is that Mom was stubborn.

It’s easy to get caught up in what we missed.. She loved me and trusted me, putting her faith in me, when it was her darkest time.  Maybe it doesn’t matter that we weren’t baring our souls, in an earlier time, maybe it just had to be, when she was damn good and ready.  Rest in Peace Mom.

Peace…..

 

If Not Us, If Not You, Then Who?

Ayn Rand has long been a favorite author of mine.  Today, when I was trying to calm myself enough, to not have every word that I write, be a word of anger.  I need to tell you what I am thinking, calmly and her quote helps me to be successful with that objective.  When I read in the paper, see on the news, the stories of more and more people being charged/convicted of sexual assault, It’s hard not to be frustrated.  Please read what I’m thinking today; it’s so important to someone, maybe even someone you love.

When our sons, daughters, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, sisters and brothers find the courage to come forward, they must be believed.  If they come to you, to me, to their teacher, grandmother, mother, father….they must be believed.  I talked to a friend the other day, who had just found out about someone that was being convicted of a sexual crime.  He said to me, “I just am struggling to believe it.”  We all struggle to believe, that’s how they get away with it.  Children go to adults and confide in them and adults can’t believe..  How do you take what you know and love about anyone and balance it with a deprivation that shakes your soul?  How do you come to terms?  How do you pick sides?  You pick the children…. If not us, not you, then who?

Within the last year, I had someone tell me, that my abuser had told their mother what had happened to me.  This person wondered if it was really that bad…  The thought sickens me that 48 years later, the child in me is still not believed.  I never told anyone, aside from a classmate when I was little,  until I was 18, when I told my children’s father.  I told no one for another 12 years.  I thought about it; I looked around my small world and wondered who I could trust?  Who?  I had people that loved me, but to believe something so bazaar, so unnatural, so sick….  I told no one, not the pastor that I admired, not my mother, not my favorite teacher and not even my grandmother..  I never had the courage to tell, so never had to sit in a courtroom, talk to a judge, or an opposing attorney… I can’t imagine that much courage in a child..  that much courage in the parents of that child.

Abuse of children is not racist, is not sexist, doesn’t adhere to Christian or non-Christian lines.  Abuse of children opens it’s arms wide and accepts anyone and everyone; it is like the anti-Christ of the utopia we would like the world to be.

Believe the children; it’s our job to protect them; if not us, not you, then who?

Peace…