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Messages - Resca

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Books & Articles / Started exploring Pete Walker on my PTSD blog...
« on: May 06, 2018, 06:20:36 PM »
Still not 100% sure if this is the right place for this post but here goes. I started a PTSD blog recently and added my second post today; it's the first in a three- or four-part series about Pete Walker's Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving. I'd love to know your thoughts.

Mother's/Father's Day / Re: Here It Comes! Mother's Day
« on: May 06, 2018, 06:14:31 PM »
Hi Kizzie,

I'm so glad to hear that you're finally in a space where MD isn't such a challenge. I know that feeling of living in a "less than Hallmark relationship" and having to battle with yourself over how best to acknowledge the realities of your mother-child relationship on a day that doesn't like negativity.

I'm lucky to have found other mothers that I can lavish my love on but I admit that MD is still hard for me. I'm not a mother, yet, myself, so it's mostly still about reflecting on the people who raised me (or didn't). It's getting easier with time and I hope that by the time my babies come around, I'll be in a good place like you are. Do you have any recommendations on how to get there?

General Discussion / Re: Personality tests
« on: May 06, 2018, 06:06:52 PM »
I would be super curious to see the results of a poll, DR.

General Discussion / Re: Personality tests
« on: May 06, 2018, 12:28:44 AM »
I LOVE personality tests. It's a part-time addiction, partially because I have a weird affinity for filling out forms and partially because I love the idea of taking a quick quiz and getting some major insight about myself. Not that it usually works that way's still fun!

I'm interested in what you have to say about how cptsd might come out in these personality tests. As California mentioned, current personality science suggests that personality is a combination of nature and nurture, so it's probably difficult to tease out where any particular trait comes from. But I imagine there are certain traits that are common among those of us who have c-PTSD, in the end, since it's such an impactful part of who we are and how we behave.

One that occurs to me immediately is neuroticism, one the the Big Five personality traits. I've always scored very high on this trait. For me, it comes out as being extremely observant, particular, and "just-so" about how I act around different people. Given that one of the key features of c-PTSD is being almost painfully attuned and deferential to the emotional state of others, I wonder if high scores on neuroticism is common.

I also noticed that I was very close to woodsgnome on the Myers-Briggs; just one letter away. I'm INFJ. It'd be interested to see how everyone else on the forum falls on this scale.

Most of the other wonderful people here have said what I wanted to say, Daisy. But I just wanted to add:

I hear you. I feel you. You are not alone.

I recently decided that I needed a way to communicate about my cPTSD with the wider world. Sort of a "coming out," so to speak. And a way to educate others about what PTSD is and what it looks like in daily life. So I started a blog. It's been a surprisingly clearing experience to put the site together and I just published my first post today!

Here's the link.

Please note that the blog does contain personal information about myself so if you prefer to keep this an anonymous experience, stay away from the "About" page.

Frustrated? Set Backs? / Re: Why do I miss my abuser?
« on: April 04, 2018, 04:55:56 PM »
Ah, it's crazy how much we miss the worse things sometimes. Back when I didn't know I had Cptsd and was just relying on depression and anxiety volunteer listeners, they would often tell me how terrible my memories were to miss them. I knew that, and for some reason I still miss them. I've realized it had more to do with missing my ideas of these memories, rather than what these memories really were.

I've been emotionally abused, but for most of it I was emotionally neglected. It's crazy, but I miss being isolated and intensely fearing rejection sometimes. I felt like I was the underdog bravely faring against the world and I had this illusion that I can do things by myself. Now I ask for help or at least do my best with that, and while my ideas weren't as impressive, I'm better.

It's like you're in my head. Your first example is what got me on this thread but I admit that I've felt the second one, too. Being rejected and alone and still getting by; being a "victim." It turned into a personality identifier that made me feel special. Like I had something that made me different and gave me permission to be "wounded." To be unable to fully take care of myself but deserving infinite praise for what I could manage. Letting go of that has been that hardest part of healing because it means I have to be even stronger and more accountable and more vulnerable than I've ever been, and that sounds exhausting. But worth it, I think, in the long run. You should be proud of the progress you've made in this area - it's hard work. I commend you.

And I appreciate your idea about looking for "healthier sources of nostalgia." It sound like a good way to capture that feeling and redirect it toward something positive. Someone else with soft skin or some other road trip. Old video games are always a good source of nostalgia, too :)

Thank you, Decimal.

General Discussion / Re: Breakthrough & How to live 'normal' life?!
« on: April 04, 2018, 04:43:30 PM »
And to you :)

Frustrated? Set Backs? / Re: Why do I miss my abuser?
« on: April 03, 2018, 08:52:46 PM »
Thank you both for your validation and support. That was a dark evening and it took me a few days to be willing to see your answers, but this is just what I needed to hear.

Thank you for reframing the narrative around those good moments, Elphanigh. You're right - those moments were carefully crafted to keep us holding on. And I gave my mother no shortage of chances based solely on the memories of those moments. But as you pointed out, Blueberry, our abusers are never going to change. The good is no longer worth the pain, especially knowing the good is only there to sort of soften me up to her whims, so to speak.

I've been thinking about what brings these episodes on. I think this one was about my upcoming birthday, but I've had them before over simple things like a song or a smell. Anything that triggers memories.

Is it the same for you?
Do you think there's a way to sort of preemptively soften the blow?
Or that riding out the confusion is more worthwhile?

I'm just so terrified that one of these days, I'm going to miss her so much that I get sucked in again. I don't know if I can take any more heartbreak.

Books & Articles / Re: Has anyone read "Supernormal" by Meg Jay?
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:45:48 PM »
Hey Randal,

Yeah, that makes sense. I kind of felt the same way. But I do thank you for bringing it up here - I'd like to be able to read it when I'm a bit more stable.

Let us know if you give it a shot? I'd love to know your thoughts.

General Discussion / Re: Breakthrough & How to live 'normal' life?!
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:37:05 PM »
Do you have references for those articles sanmagic?? I'd love to read them. They sound both fascinating and validating.

How are you doing today, Artemis? I know that feeling of being so far distant from normal, and it's challenging. It feels like it comes in waves. Some days you accomplish all your goals by sheer force of will and others days, it's like you have no idea how you got where you are or why you're staying there. It's alienating. I just want to remind you that you aren't alone :hug:

Frustrated? Set Backs? / Why do I miss my abuser?
« on: March 28, 2018, 12:55:42 AM »
I grew up with my uBPD/narcissist mother and her malignant narcissist of a husband. I went NC with the both of them for the second time around this past Thanksgiving and am honestly feeling better most days. I can even justify the NC to myself on a regular basis even though the anxiety of knowing that I'm hurting my parent is a burden. But these days are the hardest: the days when I miss my mom.

She wasn't an overtly cruel person. She took me to get my nails done, took care of me when I was sick, planned vacations and girls days. On the outside, she looked like a great mother and I let myself believe that this was the side of her that truly mattered for a long, long time. But she was also self-involved, manipulative, changable, focused on her hateful husband over and above her child. Focused on the "dream life" that she would have when I was finally out of the house. It took until I was officially moved out to realize that all the weeks of silent treatment over unwashed dishes, the frequent comments that her marriage would be easier without me, the verbal degradation of my character, and the threats to kick me out if I didn't meet my stepfather's unreasonable expectations were all forms of emotional abuse. I spent my entire childhood feeling vulnerable and unwanted and stuck in a fake reality that was totally outside my control. Trapped in a nightmare that I couldn't prove even existed.

But I miss her. I miss the smell of her hair and her perfume and the way she would rub my head. I miss long car rides with her and those moments when she said she was sorry for everything that had happened between us. When I thought she was finally going to try. I miss her hugs. I miss the sound of her clearing her voice or singing. I miss the softness of her skin.

I know those things shouldn't matter against the backdrop of the trauma and lost childhood but they still do. And it breaks me.

General Discussion / Re: Breakthrough & How to live 'normal' life?!
« on: March 27, 2018, 09:04:55 PM »
My therapist can take all the credit for that "good point," haha. She's done more for me than I can say.

I totally get that feeling of wanting to just vanish into the other person. It seems so much easier sometimes. You just let the more assertive (read here: aggressive) person take the reins and suddenly you don't have to work so hard to stay afloat. But I think there's an incredible benefit to fighting back. It's an opportunity to fill that empty space with what you choose instead of what someone else chooses for you. On my better days, it kind of sounds like an adventure. "Finding myself" or something sappy like that.

That same therapist told me that step 1 is creating more firm boundaries. Giving my self a chance to "air out" so to speak and get rid of all the otherness that's been coating it lately. It feels like getting rid of a bad habit. And it makes me feel slower than normal because I have to consciously take a breath before responding to anything and ask "But what do I really want to do/say/feel/whatever?" I think it's going to be worth it though. And I hope that whatever you decide to do is worth it for you too <3

General Discussion / Re: never feeling special and never feeling young
« on: March 27, 2018, 07:01:58 PM »
Resca, it is so hard to know this happened to people other than me too. I can only imagine what would have happened if people let me use those innate talents instead of shaming me for having them

Well, you're already super good at empathetic communication, as far as I can see, so I imagine you'd be ruling the world :cheer:

General Discussion / Re: never feeling special and never feeling young
« on: March 27, 2018, 05:41:50 PM »
@DecimalRocket That's an unfortunate but completely believable paradigm for how people react to innate talents. It almost sounds like a way for those less talented in that area to protect their pride (or their children's pride); stifle a talented person enough, and their talents are no longer a threat. And I'm sure that biases and prejudices have a part to play, as well.

I've seen this happen frequently in competitive, toxic workplaces but it's tragic to think of it happening to children who are less in control of the emotional and psychological fallout. Childhood is such a prime moment to hone and develop identity. For a child to have that opportunity squashed just because someone is uncomfortable with his or her unique strengths is horrible. Knowing that it happened to you, to silentrhino, and to me is somehow even worse.

Let's hope that framing it in these terms - as an act of pride against us rather than something that's our fault - can help us better understand why we are they way we are and make change, if we see fit. I wish you all the best.

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