Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative

  • 8 Replies
  • 140 Views
*

Snookiebookie

  • Member
  • 81
    • View Profile
Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« on: November 06, 2018, 09:47:21 PM »
Hi all

I've suffered different forms of abuse from different people, different situations. Hence having C-PTSD.

I've had lots of therapy and treatment over the years and never been diagnosed.

I've been having therapy for over a year and slowly I'm accepting that I've been repeatedly traumatised.   I've used the phrase PSTD with my therapist and she accepts that it's a good description. 

I'm starting to accept this narrative.  I've come to some startling realisations. I was scapegoated.  Also that I'm allowed to feel disappointed in, and let down by my loved ones.  These are very liberating to me.

My mother probably caused the most emotional damage. And it's been hard to deal with the things she did and said. But through talking things through I realise how badly she made me feel.

But this last week I remembered two occasions when she was nice.  This has sent me in a tail spin. It doesn't fit into the narrative.  Am I wrong about her?Am I just focusing on the bad things and ignoring the good? Or is this just my mum's internalized voice trying to confuse me  :stars:

Thanks for any  comments you leave

*

Three Roses

  • Member
  • 1542
  • CPTSD is an injury, not an illness.
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2018, 02:59:49 AM »
I think a person can be abusive and still be kind from time to time. I do have some good memories of my FOO. They weren't abusive 24/7. In a way, this makes it even more of a mind *. If they were abusive 100% of the time it might be less confusing? I hope that makes sense.

Also, functional parents make mistakes too, but this doesn't make them abusive. I'm not sure if I'm being clear, I'm feeling kind of foggy-minded today.

I noticed you said ptsd, did you mean cptsd? They are different in both cause and symptoms.

*

Dee

  • Member
  • 1466
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2018, 06:43:39 PM »

I also have good memories.  It adds to the trauma of a child or even an adult.  How can a person be both bad and good, loving and unloving.  The confusion and the not knowing what today will be like makes is worse.

*

woodsgnome

  • Member
  • 1239
  • I did not wish to live what was not life
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2018, 07:34:24 PM »
Once I had a therapist suggest that I compile a list of all the pleasant times I could recall, especially regarding the parents. I came up with only 1 from the m I'd put in that category, a few more for the f, but mostly those sorts of memories were at best a stretch and seemed manipulative, almost designed just to get me to do something or act in a way just to get approval (then watch out later!  :aaauuugh: ). Regardless, the overall abusive environment still hovered over everything.




*

milk

  • Member
  • 66
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2018, 09:56:25 PM »
Being let down by the FOO feels horrific and debilitating but there is a silver lining. It depends how one looks at it,... if it is as a child, or the adult looking back at the child, or the adult experiencing it later in life - all experiences I have been through; with the help of recognizing the stages of grief, I continue to move through EF triggers more easily (This gave me relief over the years; helping me to rewrite narratives that promoted growth and understanding - loving myself)

Its interesting to note how resilient we are when we have the tools to self-heal which is learned and practiced. Something that always worked for me when questioning the crazy making behavior of FOO member(s), is the fact that I will never understand the their intentions, but I can choose how to engage with an FOO member, asking myself what do I hope to gain from this interaction (questioning helps me to debunk my tendency towards codependency) - when that is answered then everything else falls into place. In response to your queries about acknowledging positive experiences with FOO members who exhibit abusive behavior - what do YOU want to take from those memories? That is where I believe, is the real growth - and what we choose at that time in that particular state of mind helps us to move forward whether its backwards, sideways, or uphill - its a choice and a narrative that will keep changing with us as we come to know ourselves more deeply.

Personally, it has taken me years of investigating self love to realize what it feels like and to remain consistent with a healthy practice - the changing point for me came when I let go of figuring out craziness and I started collecting a beautiful montage of loving moments. These moments inform me about love happening in the present - daily life - recognizing and attracting healthy connections and then choosing to open myself up to these experiences. (Again, work in progress)

This is a great thread! Thanks snookibookie for bringing this up - its SO hard figuring out what to do when one is trying to move forward, and in this movement a decision must be made in how to be with an FOO member(s) that is not working towards mental wellness which is evident in their actions. The feelings that come up in this questioning can shake the root of a person but after being SHOOK we are left with a desire for a solution - what does a healthy family experience feel like? Look like? How can I inspire this health in my own family? What am I doing in my life to promote wellness?  How do I engage with members of the FOO when my family is affected by their presence?

I am inspired by all of you. You all ask hard questions and I am adding to them. I love it!

« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 03:58:26 AM by milk »

*

Slim

  • Member
  • 214
  • "No dramas"
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2018, 12:35:27 PM »
Carers being nice, and horrible alternatively, is abusive, and a deliberate attempt to confuse and hurt the child.

*

LilyITV

  • Member
  • 116
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2018, 03:29:58 PM »
I had struggled with some of the same feelings with my father.  He is controlling, physically and emotionally, abusive and neglectful.  But I still love him and know that he will be there for me in times of need.  Growing up I thought he was all-powerful and wise and was desperate for his approval.  I thought he could do more wrong but now as an adult and after therapy I see him for what he is, the good and the bad.  I also see in him the fearful little boy who was also physically and emotionally abused as a child and always felt small and insignificant. 

One of the things my therapist tells me is that as trauma survivors, we have to overcome black and white thinking.  No person is going to be 100% good or 100% bad.  In children's stories, there are villains and there are heroes but in real life there are just many shades of gray.

There is a thread on this forum about "angering" and how important it is for people who have experienced abuse to feel anger about how they were treated.  I may be getting the concept wrong, but the gist of it is that your abuser is going to have good parts and bad parts.  You have to  separate out the bad parts and feel your anger toward that part and that part only.  If you try to get angry at the person as a whole, it gets hard because you do have all these feelings of love, pity, guilt creeping in when you think of the good times and good parts.

In reading some of the other responses, I need to make clear that I do not think that father treated me nicely with the intent to manipulate me.  I believe my father to be a traumatized individual but I don't think he is narcissistic.  His abuse was unintentional. 
« Last Edit: November 08, 2018, 03:33:39 PM by LilyITV »

*

woodsgnome

  • Member
  • 1239
  • I did not wish to live what was not life
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2018, 04:45:45 PM »
I guess what it all boils down to, is there really aren't always certain answers to why caregivers acted in the ways they did, consistent or not. All we're left with is the results that whatever the reason, we hurt. We go through stages from confusion to grief to self-blame, try hard to understand, but in the end all we can truly know is things didn't seem to be right.

So what to do? That's when I think the focus can shift to developing self-compassion. Without it, all does seem lost, no matter who did what or why they did it.


*

milk

  • Member
  • 66
    • View Profile
Re: Positive flashbacks....not fitting in with narrative
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2018, 09:40:21 PM »
One of my favorite understandings about wellness is that mental health seeks its own level of awareness. What you put out you get back. With that said, I have learned that a person who is sick or injured (addiction, unaware of cPTSD behaving, etc,..)  can have mental wellness present and this gives this person the wherewithal to seek wellness. (Dont throw the baby out with the bath water) Knowing this, helps me to identify unhealthy patterns of behaving in my own life and within the family unit. So, yeah, Slim, when it runs wild in the family - it is systemic and ugly  :fallingbricks:

Resources that have helped me to understand this came from attending ACOA meetings as a child (with my mom) and later as an adult/open NA meetings with friends/CBT and DBT Therapy/Buddhist teachings/and being present to people; living daily life.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2018, 10:07:35 PM by milk »