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#469087 - 08/18/14 03:13 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
don64 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/13
Posts: 815
Loc: St. Croix, USVI
Hi Gaatt,

I love my medal, and it is now safely in my archives.

I'm glad you're writing the letters to your Dad. It's a great way to move and clarify feelings and to get closure. The Patricia Love book is on my list to get, but my Kindle reader is 6 books deep right now, so new stuff is on hold. But "Emotional Incest" sounds like it will be good for me. Again, thanks for bringing up this topic.

Love, your friend, too.

Don
_________________________
Divine Law is not judgment or denial of self truths. Divine Law is honoring harmony that comes from a peaceful mind, an open heart, a true tongue, a light step, a forgiving nature, and a love of all living creatures. Jamie Sams & David Carson, Medicine Cards

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#469122 - 08/19/14 01:28 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 124
Hi Puffer,

I've been reading Patricia Love's "The Emotional Incest Syndrome". She talks of incest being a family affair and identifies the effect on different members of the family. She mentions that single parent families are ripe for the kind of boundary crossing that is at the core of abuse. She mentions the "Invasive Parent" and the "Left out Spouse" each having their own ways of failing to address the problem that has its roots in the adult relationship. My father was clearly a "Left out Spouse". Perhaps yours too?

My connections with men have been far too weak. It's a pattern that I still struggle with today. This site (MS) is helping me reverse that trend. There aren't alot of opportunities to compare notes and engage in mutual support about healing sexuality and intimacy with men. This is the only one I've found so far.

Kenneth Adams in his book "Silently Seduced" which I just finished, mentions subtle "emotional affairs" with ex-partners and the need to break off from them. I'm seeing that as a pattern with the woman I divorced in the early 90's. She recently remarried. The best way I'm finding to fully disconnect in a healthy way from her emotionally is to offer support to her new husband. It feels good to get out of "competition mode" with men.

Thanks for writing.

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469143 - 08/20/14 12:34 AM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: gaatt

I've been reading Patricia Love's "The Emotional Incest Syndrome". She talks of incest being a family affair and identifies the effect on different members of the family. She mentions that single parent families are ripe for the kind of boundary crossing that is at the core of abuse.
"GAATT"


I'm convinced that both of my parents had experienced childhood sexual abuse. I don't want to develop that here and now, but it certainly had a profound effect on me. It was experienced both directly and indirectly (subliminally). When parents were abused, they often have a kind of psychological blindness to what their kids might experience. It's the opposite of what you might expect.

I went through a stage of trying to understand my own family. That was about 10 years ago. I found that the book(s) and tapes by John Bradshaw were very helpful. The more I understood my own "roots" the more I could place my own experience in a family context.

Puffer

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#469218 - 08/21/14 01:22 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: pufferfish]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 124
Hi Puffer,

I have no idea whether my parents were obviously abused or not. There were no obvious addictions either. It's been a source of a great deal of confusion for me, because the effects on me are so clear.

One thing I am aware of (that is very clear) is that my family functioned with rules that Kenneth Adams describes as codependent and with "the potential for covertly incestuous relationships". He described these rules this way: "1. It's not Ok to talk about problems. 2. Feelings should not be expressed openly 3. Communication is best if indirect, with one person acting as messenger between two others (triangulation). 4. Be strong, good, right, perfect. Make us proud (unrealistic expectations) 5. Don't be "selfish" 6. Do as I say not as I do. 7. It is not okay to play or be playful 8. Don't rock the boat."

I associate these rules with military culture and rigidly traditional marriages like the one of my parents.

One thing that seems to be helping me is breaking the silence between me and the men in my life as I'm doing in this forum and this thread in particular.

Although the offer of support to my ex's new husband (that I mentioned above) is a major reversal in the sexual competition that I associate with men (and my ex is particularly good at triggering), it seems to be helping me deal with my guilt at what happened with her and uncover my anger at her part in it.

The military isn't particularly good at promoting connections between men that help them support each other in their most intimate relations with women. Sometimes I wonder if this is the one of the roots of the subtle hurts I suffered in my youth. Sound familiar to you?

GAATT


Edited by gaatt (08/22/14 01:00 PM)
Edit Reason: correct typo
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469244 - 08/22/14 01:36 AM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
gaatt

My father was addicted to tobacco (pipe smoking) and coffee. My mother was addicted to herself.

There was a constant struggle for dominance between father and mother. Who would be the boss? I remember in particular they had to "turn a rug" when I was about 8. They had horrible purple rugs. The rugs had to be turned around periodically to minimize wear patterns. That was a scene of huge struggle. After my father returned from his military duties, which were quite remote geographically, we would all sit down at the kitchen table for dinner. My father would attack me with words. The attacks were ostensibly about manners. But I don't really think that was it. He needed someone smaller than he was to attack.

Puffer

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#469261 - 08/22/14 01:07 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: pufferfish]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 124
Hi Pufferfish,

Originally Posted By: pufferfish
There was a constant struggle for dominance between father and mother. Who would be the boss?

This sounds close to what I experienced too. My mother was generally the winner when it came to what when on in the home, but she had little say about where we lived and how much money came in.

Thanks for writing.

Sincerely,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469332 - 08/24/14 10:34 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
FormerTexan Offline
Site Administrator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 11176
Loc: Denver, CO
I grew up a military brat, and feel my dad's military career did contribute in some way to the abuse by my mother. His physical absence allowed her to get away with her garbage at the time. Had he been there, some things simply would not have happened. I vowed as a child never to join or even appreciate the military for what they helped cause. In retrospect, my viewpoint has changed for the better.
_________________________
List of things ain't nobody got time for:

1. That


If I could meet myself as a boy...

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#469351 - 08/25/14 04:37 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: FormerTexan]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 124
Hi FormerTexan,

Looks like there are a few of us! Thanks for writing.

Originally Posted By: FormerTexan
I vowed as a child never to join or even appreciate the military for what they helped cause.

I think I did the same. Finding ways to relate in healthy ways to men has been challenging for me. I'm finding ways these days. I'm also finding myself interested in WWII stories. It seems that I'm trying to understand the world of my father. It's making sense that he would have the values he did. They don't work particularly well for me or today, but it's good to see them for what they were. Sometimes the strong, clear, rational, unemotional side of myself is important to embrace. It's also important for me to find ways to be more supporting of the needs of other men.

Cheers,

"GAATT"
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469375 - 08/26/14 01:37 PM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
gaatt Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/02/08
Posts: 124
Hi y'all,

I've come across some new insights that I though I'd share with you.

Originally Posted By: gaatt
Finding ways to relate in healthy ways to men has been challenging for me. I'm finding ways these days. I'm also finding myself interested in WWII stories. It seems that I'm trying to understand the world of my father.

There is a particular aspect of my father that I seem to be struggling with now. As a military officer, he was trained to kill. It's an accepted approach to problem solving between nations in our culture and has been for a long time. Since I'm not military, or police or anything even remotely like it, I struggle with embracing this energy at all in myself. I question its usefulness for humans in general these days since I grew up in the Cold War where it clearly became insane. In myself, it turns against me and becomes depression and/or suicidal thoughts. There is a meditation technique I know which involves consciously embracing dark emotions like these and then moving into silence once it is satisfied (usually 15 minutes of feeling body sensations related to the emotion followed by silence). It seems to help.

As I was exploring WWII movies, I stumbled upon the story of Anne Frank. I struggled with this because I identified very strongly with the Frank family and had little or no compassion for the Nazi's who killed most of them. The fear I felt was intense. I also saw that it morphed occasionally into excitement. As I struggled to see what the Frank's could have done for themselves, embracing a murderous energy in themselves (in order to better protect themselves) might have helped. This clearly goes against a long standing pattern in Jewish history (and similarly a long standing pattern in my victim story too).

I also tried to better see what would have driven the Nazi's to be so monstrously murderous. I vaguely remembered a story of child rearing practices in 19th century Germany and did a quick search for anything related. I quickly found this: http://www.nopunish.net/pwp-ch11.htm Much of what is described there has parallels to my own youth. So perhaps the Nazis were trying to avoid facing the pain of their youth by becoming outwardly violent.

Infants face life or death struggles all the time. I know I certainly did. I was powerless in the face of the unconsciousness of my parents. I'm thinking that as I learn to embrace and transform feelings of murderous rage, perhaps I'll be able to heal and transform the pain of my very early youth too.

Food for thought?

Cheers,

"GAATT"

PS: Yahoo! I'm now a MS member! :-)


Edited by gaatt (08/26/14 01:38 PM)
Edit Reason: PS
_________________________
"Love yourself and watch...Today, Tomorrow, Always." Buddha.

My Story: http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=468661#Post468661

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#469403 - 08/27/14 09:19 AM Re: Any "Brats" here? [Re: gaatt]
I Want 2 Thrive Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/04/14
Posts: 81
Loc: Florida, U.S.A
Being a Navy Brat was my escape from my abuser.
_________________________
Izzy

"There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind" C.S. Lewis
My Story: Short / Long version. *TRIGGERS*

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