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Comments for Catbox 40

Comments for Catbox 40

Material posted here is intended for educational purposes only, and must not be considered a substitute for informed advice from your own health care provider.

Courtesy of Dr. Irene Matiatos   Copyrightę 1998-2001. The material on this website may be distributed freely for non-commercial or educational purposes provided that author credit is given. For commercial distribution, please contact the author at Doc@drirene.com

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

LisaMM,

It especially applies if you live with an abuser who drinks. In fact most of the detaching skills are taught at ALANON and AA.

I have a good friend Suz. She has a husband who drinks. Though she has learnt and accepted she can't fix him. Though she also sets limits and boundaries on his behaviour. She controls herself these days and it is paying off. Although her husband still drinks he isn't abusive. He sits in his truck and drinks.

This is one of the boundaries. He does not drink in the house, near her or the children and he pays for the drink out of his share of any spare cash. She never gives him any of her share of their extra cash.

Take care Theressa

Theressa: Just one comment for you: Wow! Have you grown!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

LisaMM,

Do you know why your partner drinks? He drinks because it is an escape from dealing with disappointment in his life. He sees himself as the biggest disappointment.

He won't give up his crutch (drink) or his chocolate as I was addicted to, until he has worked on why he is so disappointed. It is one thing telling someone to stop drinking, that it doesn't help. BUT it has helped them survive up to now. It is only when they feel better about themselves and can accept their imperfect selves, you have any chance of him giving up drinking.

Suz's husband still drinks. Though because she sets boundaries he doesn't misbehave abusively with her now.

However, he hasn't recovered enough to accept himself fully. The truth is LisaMM. Just because someone gives up drinking doesn't make them whole and okay again. The drinking is just a symptom of deeper issues inside of that individual.

SO if they didn't drink. They'd be a dry drunk. In other words they may still be abusive. The only way to sort this out, in my opinion and what I have learnt from Suz, is that it is the wrong way to sort things out. When a counselor tries to get rid of the drink first.

The counselor's purpose is to help the individual feel better about themselves, able to accept disappointment and deal with their underlying issues. And belief patterns. THOUGH THE individual has to be ready to face their fears, and to work through their issues. YOU or a counselor can't force them to.

Sometimes it takes you to leave and take a stand before the individual feels they have no choice but to work on themselves in therapy. BUT even if you leave there is no guarantee.

The point is you stay if you want to. You go when you feel you can do no more. It is all about you, whether you stay or go. DON'T make the mistake of going so he'll go and get fixed. AS i say there are no guarantees he will. HE HAS to be ready to go out of his own choice.

When you set boundaries and limits they are about you, how you can control you. E.g. I will not stay in the house with you if you are drunk. Instead of: You get out of the house, your drunk.

When you set boundaries and limits it shows the other you won't accept their poor behaviour. It also teaches them to have to sit with their feelings, or try and find another creative way of getting rid of their anger inside of them. Though at least it stops effecting you directly.

I hope this helps. Theressa

 

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Dear Jay,

What happened to you should not have happened. There is nothing anyone can do to take away the wrong and the hurt of what happened with your daughter and what's happening now to your family. You're only left with choices about what to do with and for yourself from here on. It seems from your post that right now staying is the hardest, but earlier, leaving was harder. Both are choices for you and both are hard but each choice carries positive possibilities for you. The best part is that you don't have to make any choices right now!! You are suffering and it sounds like your whole family is also suffering, each in their own bubble, each for different reasons.

Suffering is like an illness. Would you make an important decision when you were seriously ill? No, you would wait until you felt more like yourself. Acknowledge your suffering, Jay, and ride it out. Go toward it rather than away from it right now. Go back to France and stay a little longer this time. Keep posting so we can write back; you have friends here. After you have sat with your pain for a good while, it may start to get boring and then you can focus on the positive aspects of all your choices. Your life will get better, and it will be good! It won't be the same, but then you already knew that. But your life will be good again because you're a terrific, positive, super-intelligent and creative person, and that's the kind of life you will make for yourself, regardless of whether you stay or leave!

Love, Perdida

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Dear Irene, If you knew how much that pic of Trubble meant. *I'm* just the coolest! Today has been just too awful to write about. One thing though, The DV unit finally came to see. me.......THEY KNOW ABOUT THIS SITE! I didn't think that any other English people other than me of Theressa did- one of the guys who came uses the internet a lot.

As I say, today has been pretty un-copable with for lots of reasons. I haven't disappeared./

AJ can't get into the catbox for reasons which she says are to do with a Hoover (giggle, I think she has the wrong word!)  Oh boy...

Trubble I haven't gone away but I do sure need a cat! love jay  *I'm* on my way! FakeMommy doesn't appreciate ^Me* anyway,

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Hi Kitty, I have one of my own that looks a lot like you.   *I'm* not his RealDaddy!My name is Kristy & I have posted much of my story on the "story board." After re-reading my post I realized that I had not fully described some of the unreasonable actions of my daughter's father. For instance, when she is visiting with him and asks to call me he refuses to allow it. She has always been a picky eater & he enjoys acting as though he is an expert on this topic. For instance, she will ask him for "Fruity Pebbles" cereal and he responds "no" you should eat spaghettios or a ham sandwich instead. This typifies his hypocritical tendencies since he introduced her to "Fruity Pebbles" when we were still living together. It was the only cereal he would eat. She is crazy about grilled cheese sandwiches (a perfectly healthy food for an underweight 10-yr-old) but if she asks him for one he responds "no, you eat too many of them".....you should eat"_____"(whatever he has decided she should eat that day). When we were still together and the family sat down for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner (including guests) if my daughter did not clean her plate, he would sit with her on his lap in front of the platter until she finished every drop--she was not allowed to move from his lap until he said so. This would sometimes take 2 hrs. while our guests were extremely uncomfortable. He never lifted a finger to help with housework yet he felt he had the right to criticize my housecleaning, even though I usually worked more hours daily than him. I'm relating all these incidents because I must make my case why my daughter should not be forced to spend more time with her father as he is requesting. She already visits every other weekend & Tues. evening with sleeping overnight. We live only 1/2 mi. from each other so I'm hopeful the courts will be convinced the "no" overnights will become standard since my daughter feels strongly that she does not want to sleep at her father/grandparents home. She feels she can cope with the present visitations if the courts do not insist after the evaluation that she must sleep over at his place. If anyone has any ideas, past experiences, etc. that could help me convince the evaluator that they should grant my daughter's wishes for no overnights & no additional visitation, I would greatly appreciate it.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

I just found this site today. What a help it has been! I've been in therapy for about 6 months and it has helped me a lot. Everyone articulates it all so well. When I read about Debbie and the interaction between her and her husband...I though I was reading about me! I've been married 20 years and sometimes my husband is affectionate but most times not and pushes me away or acts put out that I want to be close.

I've been learning through therapy about my co-dependency about feeling wanted and needed from him. As soon as I saw it I was able to start working on it...tho sometimes things go better, I get happy and then slip back to my old ways.

My husbands father, he died and I never knew him, from what I understand, rejected my husband. He tolerated him and was cold to him. Tho he was the opposite with his older brother. The father drank and was very critical.

It is hard for my husband to compliment me or say positive things to me. sometimes he does. It is hard for him to say he is sorry..he is very defensive and takes most things I say as a criticism. Before God, these are often observations or suggestions that my girlfriends tell me are nothing. I feel like I can't even ask him a question like, "do you think it is a good idea to water that grass...it looks pretty wet to me." Zap! I've just criticized him...and because it doesn't make sense to me before I started therapy i thought I was losing my mind. He doesn't yell or scream t is quiet. but he is a very strong man and his super intelligence runs circles around me. then I really cant figure anything out and I see me as the problem.

I'm trying to figure this all out and boy am I going to come back here.

Debbie said it all so well in her post a few days ago. I've been really fighting depression for a number of years and recently realized it.

I am working on the co-dependency in me. I didn't know it was such...I thought I was being a good,, loving wife by being that way. You know, trying and not giving up on my marriage. But it feels so good to be ok with just me and God. to detach. I have two beautiful children that I adore.

Debbie I'd love to talk. Just knowing that I am not crazy and alone helps me beyond compare. That this cycle happens and there are some sane steps I can take for me! Thank you all!

Lisa2We

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

This is Kristy again. I'm so sorry for the double post, but the second one contains what I feel is important physical threats from my daughter's father. He also tried to control me emotionally by telling me I was fat and that no other man would be interested in me. He called me a "daddy's girl" because I am close to my parents. Today my daughter & I have a nice apartment which we share with a cat, hamster & goldfish. I just received a promotion & raise. Kicking him out was the best decision I ever made. However, he has now found a new way to control me with interminable court appearance as he makes more custody demands.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Theressa,

Thank you so much! I swear I have the answer to my question right here, but I can not seem to think clearly at times. Your post clarified what I have felt for some time now. He has to want to change or give up his crutch. He is telling me he does not think he has a problem. I don't think He is ready to face it yet. His defense mechanism kicked in. I made a big mistake by pushing him to "stop drinking or else". He chose "or else". Then filed for divorce to up the ante. He is trying to convince me that "WE" have the problem. "We" do have the problem. I am still trying to get him to see that I am a separate person with a separate problem (which I am working on). Your problem is that you are trying to convince him... It's just not sinking in. He uses my admission that I have a separate problem to blame me for all the problems. His drinking included. It's not the drinking by itself, it's the behavior before and after I have a problem with. I want him to accept responsibility for himself while I accept responsibility for myself. We can both work on the separate "stuff" and meet in the middle. He just continues to drink and waits for me to "give in". I am not willing to do that this time. So, I feel like I am suffering and his children are suffering because of the choices he is making to continue to drink. That is why I get so angry. Then, I get sad. That is just what my reality is right now, and I am learning to accept it. I am in a lot of grief right now because I always believed he would pick me and his children over the alcohol and his needs.

I read some information about Co-dependency and Survivor's Guilt. I believe that is what I am experiencing right now. I feel guilty for surviving and becoming healthy. I believe for some reason that I am "abandoning" him by throwing my hands up and walking away. I know this is not rational. He keeps telling me things to make me feel guilty using the kids. I can see that he is just manipulating me. I keep thinking if he is so concerned about the kids then why won't he stop drinking. Well, I think that is because he can not stop himself. He needs help but sees it as weak to ask for help. I know it's okay to ask for help. I know that I can not stay and enable this unhealthy behavior. I love him too much to allow him to continue living in denial and behaving this way, or acting out through his drinking. So I am trying to challenge my belief system. I am learning to "let go" or detach. That's my hurdle. Boy, it's tough.

I am working out what that bottom line is that I am willing to tolerate. I know from experience of living with alcoholics that I am putting my children at risk by staying. I know my husband is on his honeymoon. He is being good to try to get me into counseling to turn it around. My husband has stopped the rages but has started this covert passive aggressive manipulating behavior. I can not tolerate this much longer.

What is hard is I know with more time he may "get it" but since he filed for divorce. He cut himself short. I guess I will toss the ball back over today and tell him to figure it out. I swear I am trying to work on my "stuff". I am just stuck!!! Just when I think I get it, then I regress backwards. I will just keep stumbling around. It's not fun by the way when someone keeps walking up behind you "tugging the rug" from underneath for entertainment. I keep dusting myself off though and getting back up no matter how tough it is.

Well, I am off to have a chat with my inner child. Obviously there is something inside of me that does not want to let go of the fantasy of being able to provide enough love that he will want to go get fixed on his own.

Thanks again, Theressa. It's great to see that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. You guys are great! I really think this website is a life saver for me and the many others that have the answer just can't think clearly at the moment. I need help sometimes learning how to communicate how I really feel. I am learning....slowly....but I am learning :)

Sincerely,

Lisa

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Wednesday, June 13, 2001

i posted the other day about my wife having an affair. we have two children 14 and 9. when all this "all this?" All what? started she wanted to separate right away with absolutely no counseling or anything. then when the affair came to light i told her that i was ready to separate and get on with our lives. all of a sudden she was willing to go to counseling. she has shown no remorse about the affair. i have worked hard and seen three therapists. all have basically agreed that i am not this abusive monster that she tried to make me out to be. she continues to read Patricia Evans books and won't let the subject rest. i have apologized repeatedly but nothing works. one therapist said she is trying to use this abuse issue to justify her actions. I've seen this when a victim becomes rageful and refuses to take his or her part of the responsibility.  i would like to salvage my marriage but don't no how to get her to let go. I'm not minimizing the hurt i caused. but its been a year and this monster has not shown his head once. so who's right and where to i go

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Hi All,

Asha, thanks for your reply and advice. I agree that being on my own has been a very necessary and enlightening experience. I've been on my own, with 3 kids, since Nov. 99. At times I do wonder if it is premature to go back, at other times I think we will never be perfect so what exactly am I waiting for. Emotionally, I think we will all be better off in a two parent family, even if there is tension from time to time, there is stress in single parenting as well. The kids benefit from having both parents and I benefit from having help. W has always taken an equal role in cooking, cleaning and childcare. So although there may still be times where there is relationship conflict, there would certainly be far less family stress overall and more one on one time for the kids. Not to mention financial stress would be extremely reduced for both of us. Maybe we could even afford to send the kids to college some day.

Realistically there is some conflict in every relationship, I guess the question is whether or not there is respect for one another. Just today he brought up (for the 100th time) how he thought I was pretty bold to meet men on the internet during our separation. I said I didn't think it was any more bold to meet them on the internet than in a bar or library or anywhere else. He started yelling at me about "always" disagreeing with him to which I replied that it was OK that he disagreed with me, but then he yelled some more and told me to go somewhere and hung up on me. I wasn't angry, I actually found it kind of humorous. I think that this exchange was immature, but I can live with it because he hung up and will likely apologize. In the past, I would have been really angry and calling him back yelling or crying, etc. I know that if we were in the same home, he would have walked away and ended it instead of hanging up. I am also aware that maybe I could have just let him express his feelings about my meeting men on the internet instead of disagreeing with the bold part. That really wasn't the point of what he was trying to express since he is hurt that I attempted to meet other men during our separation. It does bother me that he is bothered by that since he did assault me and I had no intention of giving him another chance at the time, and I am tired of listening to his comments about it. Maybe that is why I tried to change the subject to whether or not it is a bold thing to do.

Another thing that came up today (must be the moon :) ) is that he said he didn't deserve a probation order (for assault and death threats against me) but that my first husband deserves to be brought up on criminal charges for making death threats against him. He does admit that he did terrible things but feels that he was victimized by the courts, which he was to some extent. I wonder why wpb has this way of getting himself victimized where he goes? Hmmmmm.... I told him that I wasn't going to come up and spend the weekend listening to him blame everyone else for the situation he is in and to call me when he was ready to focus on his own imperfections. Perhaps that wasn't fair since he has made lots of improvement in the way he talks to me, but I really don't appreciate him bashing everyone else's behavior when what he did was so majorly wrong, and saying that he is alone in the situation he's in because everyone else is making decisions that are affecting him and the PO is not justifiable.... OK, maybe the PO is a little too rigid, but he brought it on himself and if everyone overreacted, than IMO he should prove that, instead of being so angry and resentful. I should add that he isn't always angry and resentful, and he does admit often that he is angry at himself. Maybe what I should do is go up this weekend and if I tell him I don't want to listen to it I can see if he will respect that or not. I think he probably would. I guess that would be a good sign.

Thanks for listening and I just want to say that despite the ups and downs you all seem to have a good handle on where you're at. I also must say that I appreciate the advice and attitude here in the catbox much more than some of what I saw on bravenet.

Take care!

Mel

 

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

Work on you. Don't tell him he needs to work on himself. Do not try to give ultimatums. Just live and let him live. When you give up trying to force him to work on himself. Then the struggle is over, your lesson is learnt.

The lesson you can't fix him. When the universe is ready he will learn in his own time schedule for learning, you can't rush this along. It is out of your power.

Look at your mistakes, look at your experiences, look at the responses, the criticisms you hear, then think about these things, what behaviours aren't working for you.

Are you people pleasing, or do you tell the truth and not hide anything and just accept the response you get?

It is only by being truthful you can learn the lessons to move on. When you avoid the lessons by people pleasing, hiding the truth, lying or bending the truth so he doesn't get angry etc. You are in a struggle. IT IS like having a lamp in your way, until you allow the truth to flow without bending it the struggle will continue and the lessons will keep coming, you will keep hitting your head against the brick wall, knocking it on the lamp so to speak.

When you be truthful and then use boundaries to control your own behaviours, such as I will leave the room if you speak to me this way. WHEN you detach from his poor behaviour and let him come back to you. THEN the struggle is over and the universe sees you've learnt and lets you move on.

This is all about you learning about yourself. (YES ALL OF IT), the criticisms you hear help you see where you are sensitive and then you can go over the feelings and past experiences that also made you feel this way. THEN YOU CAN HEAL THEM, by seeing you couldn't avoid them, and the people that hurt you didn't know any better. YOU allow yourself to cry over these hurts.

When you give up being defensive and you look inside yourself at what these criticisms mean. ONE key point if there was nothing inside that needed healing then you wouldn't be defensive.

When you realise all that happens to you through out the day, happens so you can learn about where you are up to now. Then you hear criticisms and then go off and ask yourself why you felt this way, is it true any of this, where did you hear this before, (in childhood perhaps? Is it true?)

This way you modify your beliefs about yourself. You grow, you expand.

Now I know why I have no need to feel bored or lonely, when I am on my own. I have so much to think about, where I am at, how could I get bored.

Take care, it is an adventure. Theressa

See this URL it really helped me understand, there are lots of different articles but they explained a lot.

http://www.spiritweb.org/Spirit/mirror-edwards.html

(I understand mirrors now, I realise I have emotions locked inside of me that need working on these emotions have energy that surrounds my body this energy acts like a magnet and attracts experiences to me to work on these emotions. THIS IS WHY no one else is responsible for my experiences. It is part of the process for me to go through the interactions and work out what emotions and issues I need to fix.

Therefore, I have no need to blame others. I just need to accept that these experiences are for me to use to work on my emotions locked up inside of me. IF I WANT TO, I have to be ready to want to look at all the interactions though.

LisaMM your partner isn't yet ready. ARE you?

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

He isn't picking the alcohol over your and his children to spite you. Right now he can't do without it. It is a lifeline for him right now. Don't take it so personal. It isn't about you. It is his way of surviving. He uses this to escape from his problems.

He has learnt to deal with his issues and problems yet. When he is ready the universe will send the lessons he needs to learn.

Your job is to detach from his drinking, try your best to not let it affect you. By setting boundaries for yourself, such as you won't be in the house when he is drinking, or ask if he can drink in one place out of the sight of the children. You won't pay for his drinking. You might have to allocate some money to each of you for extras. THEN you don't complain or mention how he spends his share.

His share is his business and his choice how to spend it.

You get on with your own life. You take the lessons sent each day and go on your own and ask yourself if these things are true, why they are true, you look at any behaviours which aren't working for you. Then you take steps to act to change these behaviours. YES you will make mistakes though these mistakes just tell you, you have more work still to do.

YOU might be asking me how on earth this is gonna get you a whole relationship. BE PATIENT. It is all a process. Don't expect a fairy tale life, it isn't about having a fairy tale life, it is about learning about yourself, knowing who you are at any given moment.

Enjoying the things such as smiles, laughs and having fun. Giving yourself a break when you make mistakes, as I said above.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

If you choose to go it is because right now the universe thinks it is the right thing to do. The path you take is always the right one. There are no mistakes, just new lessons that teach about yourself.

So you have nothing to feel guilty about, if you are meant to go now, the universe will make it so.

You have no control over your route, you do have control over your responses to the routes. So if you have a emotions that needs sorting then you will attract the experiences you need. Even if this means the experience is you leaving and being alone for a time.

Nothing happens by accident.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

When you read my post above you understand why you feel uncomfortable, though you also understand that you can change your beliefs.

Yes you feel uncomfortable, this is fear. You fear what is going to happen next. The truth is you have no control over your route. Though you do have choices which determine your next lessons.

As I said until you learn the lesson, the lessons keep coming. Until you let go and detach and make your choices based on knowing that whatever choice you make is OKAY. It is meant to be. Then you can let go of guilty and fear.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

Passive-aggressive behaviour comes about when we try to control another. So if you stop trying to control him, he won't have to do this. Eventually he'll stop as he has no purpose for it anymore.

When you say "You should do xxxxx." Abusers and victims revert to adolescence mode "I am going to do it, or not do it to spite them, I am not having them telling me not to do this, I'll show them they can't control me."

Passive-aggressive behaviour actually hurts the one doing it most.

SO stop trying to change him, convince him to stop doing things. "Doing nothing to convince him works, Disengaging works. Jay and I are proof of this." When you give up trying to control life works better.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

Being stuck happens when we allow struggle. When we don't concentrate on working on ourselves, when we don't just see what our interactions are about inside of us.

When you start to just see these about you, you give up trying to control and then you are no longer stuck.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

LisaMM,

You aren't regressing backwards, you just haven't yet got the lesson and dealt with the issues inside of you so the lessons will keep coming until you do.

This isn't for entertainment it is to help you.

Take care Theressa     Theressa is giving you good advise LisaMM!

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Mel,

Maybe your husband needs to see that he is attracting these people to victimizing him, maybe if he saw how he contributed to his life he might get it.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Mel,

Why do you feel it is your job to stick up for all these other people, your ex for instance?

Why do you think it is your job to tell your partner he needs to take responsibility for his problems?

It might be better if you just detached and let him learn himself that him criticizing everyone else isn't helping him.

SOMETIMES it is by letting someone learn and living your own life without judging others that they actually learn more. They get it when they are suppose to.

No amount of lecturing and being told changes anyone.

Take care Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Theressa,

Actually, I'm not sticking up for "all these other people". They have made mistakes that have also upset me and caused problems within my family. What I'm saying is that I'm tired of listening to W bash them and blame them for our current situation because in my opinion what they did didn't put us where we are and he seems to be minimizing the part he played.

I'm tired of the anger and hostility. I just want peace. I feel that if I can forgive him for assaulting me, why can't he forgive the others. If he's not ready too then that is his choice, but it doesn't mean I have to listen to it. Good.

I don't feel it is my job to tell him what to do, but I told him why I didn't want to come up this weekend so he would understand what I won't tolerate. It is up to him to decide what to do with it.

Take care, Mel  Much better Mel. Keep it up!

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Mel,

No you don't have to listen to him.

Also though be aware that with abusers they think the world happens to them. They don't understand that they have unresolved stuff that causes their experiences to happen.

To the abuser he/she is a "poor old me, me" It is always what others have done to them. BLAME and more blame, this way they don't have to take responsibility for themselves.

Though you won't change him, you are right about this, your boundaries though will mean he has to release his anger elsewhere.

SO YES I agree you don't have to listen to him. Though in addition, once you've set a boundary and told him you don't want to listen, do just that.

Don't start explain why you shouldn't have to listen and why he should see how he does things, and try convincing him to stop telling you.

Just say: "I don't want to listen to you put others down, I am leaving the room." (DO just that, cuz misery loves company so when you convince him or try to get him to understand why he might also have problems. YOU GIVE him this company."

Take care, you sound like your really growing. Theressa As are you Theressa. Thanks for all the good advice.

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

I want to send a special thank you to Dr Irene, & the I am responsible board for giving me new reading materials to help me understand what all this growing is about. Thank you!

And to the catbox, Asha, Jay, B, AJ, Perdida, TimB, Nathan. AND Suzanne who started recovery with me. Though she is due her baby any day so she doesn't post so much now. Though she is doing a psychology course and learning lots. ALSO Michele on Divorce busting she taught me about solutions, and covenant, he was the one who first told me about DR Irene's wonderful site.

When I first visited it I understood very little. Though in the last week or so it has started to gel.

It really helped when Dr Irene got me to answer my own posts. RON thinks she is great and I agree with him. Such a remarkable lady. A big hug to TRUBBLE for putting his paw prints on my posts to show me where I was doing well. And Dr Irene for asking me to check food for thought out. She provided structure for my therapy sessions with RON. He comments often on how this support group helps me reveal the truth and the self defeating behaviours that are present in my life. :) 

AND last but not least RON. Yes! Ron pushed me at times when I didn't want to be pushed. I have been angry at this guy more than anyone else in my life, for he pushed the limits. Giggle! At times I would go and do things and blame him for it if it didn't turn out right for me. Though I learnt lots from my mistakes.

I learned to trust my values, to make my own choices. And to accept responsibility for my own life. I have seen how I judge others at times, how I bend the truth to be liked more. How I am needy. And be OK with all of it!

I am going through the process of becoming aware of the things I do that don't benefit me. The short-term payoffs that stop me growing. The fact that the truth sets me free.

I have a way to go and lots of new behaviours to learn to replace the old ones that don't work. BUT do you know I can now see how I can help myself.

I feel so light now, I feel like I have a map of directions. AND YES Ron, Michelle, Dr Irene, Asha, B like you all said, the answers are all inside of me. I believe you all now.

I am so happy, I could cry. Thank you so much. :)

And newcomers trust that you can get through this, 10 months ago I never believed I'd ever get to this day. 2 years ago I didn't even know what co-dependency meant. Yes Theressa. All those who want to watch the miracle in your life need do is read back pages of the Catbox, when you were a very different - almost lost - person. But, no matter how lost you were, you always gave great advice!

Today I can gladly say I a work in progress. And have learnt that my old behaviours were for survival. BUT now I am in charge of my own destiny I don't want to just survive anymore, I WANT TO LIVE.

Yes LIVE.

Thank you for listening and thank you for being part of my journey.

Take care of thy self Theressa

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

ooooppps, I forgot to thank the most important person of all. GOD (my higher self), my integrity. WITHOUT YOU none of this would have been possible.

THANK YOU (MORE THAN THE FIGURES IN THE WORLD).

GOD IS ACE, HE IS THE BEST, HE LETS US GO THROUGH OUR PAIN BUT HE STILL PROVIDES WHAT WE NEED.

THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART, GOD.

LOVE THERESSA               Wow Theressa! I think He heard you!

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Theressa,

WOW...AMAZING...KUDOS!!!

How the BIG GUY works in our lives, when I let him. My last posting, back in May, I was confronted with my daughter Ally promising to call me and then, not following through.

Well, the two of us TALKED about FEELINGS. Shoe on the other foot.   " Ally, how would it feel if I or someone that was your close friend promised to call you, take you to an N'SYNC concert, take you to your favorite restaurant...and then, DID NOT do it?" How would you feel? Ignored? Left out? Disappointed? Anxious? Frustrated/ ANGRY?

I opened that Book to page 449...it told me what to do. Feelings cannot be argued with...I now hear from Ally more than ever.

There is a lot of background here and perhaps it is best left to "My Story" which I need to post. In any case Theressa, again, what growth. And, I love your line " I WANT TO LIVE" - it was the title of a movie my Mom won an Academy Award for in 1957.

WHERE IS SHARON?

Hugs, and *CatKisses*

Tim B.

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Debbie I'd love to talk. Just knowing that I am not crazy and alone helps me beyond compare. That this cycle happens and there are some sane steps I can take for me! Thank you all!

Lisa2We

Lisa2We you can talk to me anytime. Any of you can. My e-mail address is djadka@visuallink.com.

My husband's parent's are still living and they are the most wonderful people I have ever met. My husband had a real bad accident back in 1984 and as I hear it (I did not know him at the time) he was in a coma and when he came out of it he thought that he was one of his clients. He is in the counseling field and knows how to control other's peoples actions and behaviors. This makes it harder on me to counter his attacks as it says in the book the Dr. Irene got me to start reading. My husband and I have only been married for 3 1/2 years.

I too fight depression but I think that I got it under some kind of control without medications. That would just give my husband a boom in the sex department if I took anti-depressants which decrease your sex drive. It not the sex that bothers me - it's the getting close to him and I think, in my own mind, that it's a trust issue too. Right now I am just trying to read the book and gain some strategies to counteract his turning everything around on me. I also have to get my self-esteem back up to par so that I can tell him that he will not cross my boundaries, like picking me up.

Debbie P.S. I noticed this past week that I couldn't get any new messages for two days. I don't know if that is the internet or if this program is set up to do it this way.

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Theressa,

THANK YOU! I am reading all your post and just letting it sink in. I will definitely do some thinking today. I think that my problem is that I am trying too hard to see. I am like an adolescent now (1 year of therapy). I am eager to learn. I know the terminology and I am aware. I just don't have the experience yet. Especially to be saying I am healthy when I am actually just starting my own recovery. I am really just coming out of denial and realizing that my coping behaviors are not working for me any longer. I may need to just slow down, let it sink in, and reflect. Instead of trying to force it to come to me. I am very exhausted from all this trying to "make it all better" for everyone. I need some patience and faith that the Universe will work with me if I just allow it to flow freely.

I feel horrible now. I just got off the phone with my husband this morning and asked him to "choose between the beer or his family". Big Mistake! OH I just get so frustrated because I do take this personally. I need to look into why that is. I was trying to get through to his thick skull. I need to go look into that mirror real quick and admit to myself that this is not working. It has not so far, so why did I run back into that brick wall. Now if I back down at this point, do I tell him or just back down, and don't say anything like "I was wrong to think I should place an ultimatum on your drinking?" I would do this with a my children admit my behavior was inappropriate and advise them what I will do instead. I am thinking just "drop it" that way I am not the reason he goes out and drinks to spite me. Hmm.....Let me go think this out. Good strategy. When in doubt, do nothing. Except think...

I will read again. Let it sink in. Then get back to you.

Thanks again, Theressa! Your strength has me motivated. When I grow up I want to be that strong too!!! You have earned this strength through very hard work. You should be proud!

:) LisaMM

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Thursday, June 14, 2001

Dear all, Sharon here,

Yes, I have emerged from the deep. I've been quite depressed for the past week or so and really have been trying to nurture myself. Its been hard because I'm been tearful about my final breakup from Dr. Psycho 3 weeks ago because I really feel that I need to stay strong this time.  Its been hard because I know its the right thing to do - this man will never change - nor does he want to - and I've been his cheerleader thinking that things would go back to being wonderful. They aren't - and he's not - and so I must really let go. This is the first time in this last year that I have felt this 'down' and even considered meds. I thought I'd give myself another week and see if I'll snap out of it. Right now I'm doing some major walking trips - 2-3 miles a day - and it does help me sleep - plus my figure is REALLY improving. I've lost over 5 lbs!! So, in that regard, that's the good that comes out of it. However, my sleep patterns are still broken. 

The last time he spoke he said he was moving on and that within a few weeks to expect a new woman around his house with him. I thought that was mean. However, he does still want me to have his old air conditioner - and he still wants to re-consider my recommendation of him and I going into counseling together. The way he wants things right now is this -- Dr. Psycho realizes he was a complete ass in this relationship. He wants to have his cake and eat it too. He realizes that I am torn apart about how things went down between us and he says now its all his fault. He wants he and I to have no contact for 120 days and in October try to initiate a 'friendship'. He's in no position to set the stage, yet he's still controlling... Yuk. He thinks we have 'unfinished business', and wants to have space to figure it all out. But he does realize his part in it and that I am frustrated with him. The bottom line is that I think he found a new victim - wants to size her up and use what he can out of her - have no real relationship with her - make her miserable - charm her to the point that she falls in love - then unceremoniously dump her like he did me. He wants you as a back up in case they don't work out. This man is a narcissistic - and I am dealing with what J and Yolanda have been dealing with.

Very painful for me to share this in writing about how vulnerable and stupid I feel  because its been dragging me down and under for many, many months. Please be OK with being human. I'm glad you're sharing all this. Seeing it in black and white makes you really take notice, as you should... I have met many men since December when he and I officially broke up - however they have major baggage. So, right now I am in a major healing - major depression - major mourning - lots of tears and breakdowns - but hey, its OK. I need to go through this. Hopefully, by October I will meet my personal goal of losing the weight (20) I need without even giving him a thought. The walking helps ALOT. Thanks for letting me whine and thanks for asking about me. That meant alot. Love, Sharon  Sharon, Take him up on the 120 days. But make it even longer. The more time passes, the more you'll realize what a nightmare this has been...

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Friday, June 15, 2001

This is only my 2nd post to the catbox and right now I find myself afraid my husband is going to walk in and I will be "caught" pouring out my feelings here. I don't know why I don't want him to know that I have been reading about verbal abuse but I don't. You probably don't trust yourself to handle it, or aren't ready to deal with it yet.  Tonight was difficult for me. Over dinner my daughter made a comment and my husband responded (like a child) with a similar comment and it was very hurtful and my daughter went to her room and stayed there. 

He is her step dad and we've been married almost one year. Then after she left I told him that he needs to remember that he is the adult and she is the child and he needs to resist needing to throw something back like he's a child. So he told me that he meant what he said and I could feel bad if I wanted to and my daughter could feel bad if she wanted to, but it was true. He proceeded to tell me that the way he feels right now is "not in a million years would I want to have a child with you the way things are, and I've waited all my life to have a child"....His eyes seemed to be searching mine for some sign of hurt...there was none...I just nodded in agreement. It was as if his intention was to say it in a way that would deeply hurt me and make me feel bad because I wasn't fit to be the mother of his children....quite honestly...I don't think he's fit to raise a human being the way he is. Good for you: you're ANGRY! (You should be! He's being totally yukky.)

I haven't told him that but it's how I feel...he couldn't take that. He couldn't take it? Or, you aren't ready to rock the boat - which would be OK, as long as you're clear about your thoughts and feelings. Sometimes I feel like it's never going to work but I keep hope....is that nuts? It's not nuts at all, but neither is it likely to work without some kind of intervention... Sometimes I feel like it is. One of my friends tells me that I need to set boundaries and decide what my limits are and leave when he crosses those. Good advice. My feeling on the matter is that I am married and I have a commitment to God, myself, my daughter and my husband to do what it takes to pull through. We are currently in therapy...Gotta go. he's coming! Your commitment is to do all in your power to fix things: to change yourself. Realize that your commitment is not about changing him. That would need to be his choice. But, how can he even think about getting a handle if you don't let him that his behavior is at times hurtful and unacceptable to you?

Julie :)

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Sharon,

Tim B. here...

Great that you're walking...it is a wonderful way to meditate and it just might take you in a healthy direction away from Dr. Psycho...believe me, there is nothing there but crumbs for Sharon... the whole cake is waiting on the journey that has begun...Sharon's WHOLE cake! Giggle!  This is from Trubble:

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Friday, June 15, 2001

LisaMM,

You don't need to wait any longer, just look at your interactions and see what behaviours aren't working.

The lessons are all there for you. Small changes help change your life.

I've realised things I do, and now know they aren't working:

Some of them:

I bend the truth to soften the blow. I will fabricate or modify what happened, when I talk to my partner. WHY? well if I show I was arrogant, he pulls me up on it. If I show I was weak he pulls me up on it.

SOLUTION to improve my life: I tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me GOD. Then I get the reactions I was meant to get. I can handle them. They are part of my lessons. I might receive anger for my truth. THEN I CAN set a boundary "I think I will go home etc" Then I can detach and leave him to come to me.

When I do this I have learnt my lesson, the struggle is over and so the universe will stop sending me new lessons to help me get this issue sorted.

I also end up talking too much: I talk about other people, their problems, and in all this judge them. This is always about my close family. I will talk to my grandmother about my sister and all the things I think she is doing wrong.

WHY? It stops me having to talk about me. THIS IS THE KEY. When I start to do this check out how I am feeling, and start to talk about myself. What I have been doing? Learning? My plans? My hopes? Then ask about the person I am talking to, there plans? there dreams? what I've watched on TV? What I've read? What I especially liked that happened this week? My holidays? The achievements my daughter is making.

(ALL ABOUT ME AND THEM, so we can learn about each other, get to know each other)

Another thing I do is try to fill silent gaps. WHY? because I feel uncomfortable, I always thought I had to keep people near me, amuse them, etc. WHY attract this attention? Neediness

I would again talk about my close family, friends and how I think they should sort themselves out, Or I would talk of my failings, or someone else's failings. "Why did xxx do such a stupid thing."

SOLUTION: I can talk about me, and ask about them as above. I can allow silence and in this time I can think about what they've said and I feel. What issues it brings up. THEN I can go away and do my homework. I can use these interactions and responses etc to see what needs fixing in me. THE FEELINGS and emotions and my reactions give me this information.

These are a few of the behaviours that sabotage my growth. And stop me getting to know others, and letting them get to know me.

Take care Theressa

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Friday, June 15, 2001

LisaMM,

You ran into that brick wall to show you what isn't working. Don't beat yourself up, just take the lesson that doing this doesn't work, and next time you start to do it. SAY "STOP, it won't help."

You may have to do this many times, though eventually the universe will see you've learnt enough of that lesson and then you'll learn new lessons.

Keep looking and seeing what isn't working and take steps to stop it happening again.

Though don't beat yourself up. If you make mistakes just see them as something to learn from to not do the same thing that isn't working next time.

BEATING YOURSELF UP STUNTS YOUR GROWTH!!!! Saying I am doing my best right now and learning HELPS you grow!!!

Take care Theressa    As always, good stuff.

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Friday, June 15, 2001

LisaMM,

No need to admit to him you shouldn't have given him an ultimatum. Just learn from it for next time. THERE is never any need to report to others continuously when you make mistakes.

You end up feeling even worse. You admit your mistakes and how does it help? Your partner will use it to make you feel even worse, don't go there.

Instead see what you did wrong and work on not doing it again. YOUR action speaks louder than any amount of words.

SO don't try telling him you shouldn't have done xxxxxx. Just take steps to not do it again. If you do, do it again just pick yourself up and try next time.

These lessons take time to learn. They are learnt quicker if you don't report to others giving them things to use to put you down. AND if you don't beat yourself up, by saying "I am so stupid I did it again."

You aren't stupid for repeating mistakes, you are wise if you realise you needed to make these mistakes in order to learn from them.

As I said they keep coming until the universe sees you've learnt.

Take care Theressa

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Julie,

You do know why you don't want your husband to see you pouring your heart out.

IT Is fear of his reaction. 

This is why you change your behaviours in other ways such as bending the truth etc. You use these behaviours to avoid his anger.

A better solution is for you to work out your life. Make plans in case you ever have to leave of where you would go, how you would finance yourself, etc. THIS takes some of the fear away if you ever did have to leave.

Then when this is sorted out you'll feel more secure. Please trust me when i tell you, you will be okay even if you have to leave. You will always have all that you need.

Now it may never come to having to leave, though you have to have the courage to if you ever need to. This courage comes in time, as you learn to trust yourself more.

THEN you have to learn about boundaries. What you will/will not accept. When your husband/partner behaves inappropriately you set a boundary. you say "I am leaving the room I don't want you to treat me this way."

Then you leave the room. If he follows you, you leave the house. If he stops you leaving the house. You say "I want to go out, if you do not let me. Then I will have no option but to report you to the police."

Then if he doesn't let you out you follow through.

This sounds scary, but it is the only way to stop the abuse.

YOU also have to look at your own behaviours. Are you passive-aggressive? This means do you do things to spite your partner. For instance not cleaning the house to show him. Or burning his dinner to spite him. Throwing it in the bin if he is late. (Just leave it on the side),

Or not caring for yourself to spite him.

Any behaviour you do to get at him. STOP them. You only hurt yourself. You do things for yourself and others because it benefits you. (it is all about what benefits you)

You help others if you really can. (If your tired, ill, or have other plans, even those plans are for leisure, you then SAY No I can't help and you don't feel guilty, you must come first, that is how it should be)

NEXT criticisms how to handle them. First step, only agree with the true bit of the statement. e.g. You are lazy. "that is your opinion" (then don't try to convince others that you are not etc. Or give explanations)

e.g. You are always late for appointments answer: Yes I am late

This helps you deal with defensiveness.

If the criticisms aren't true at all, don't reply at all.

NOW how useful are criticisms????

VERY useful once you learn to accept that your faults are okay. This step comes later after you learn to only agree with the part of the criticism which is true.

How to use criticisms: Look at how you feel. Write down in a note book who else makes you feel this way. Do you believe the criticism. Are you always late etc? How does being late effect your life? How could you take steps "FOR your own benefit" not to be late.

THIS way you make improvements that benefit you. (IT is all about improving your life)

Now if it isn't true just discard it.

THIS is setting internal boundaries: Checking out if things are true. THE way you do this is above. You hear the criticism, you don't react, or say anything, then you go away alone and think about the criticism. Question yourself to find out as above if it is true etc.

Accept yourself that you aren't perfect. That is okay. Mistakes teach your where you are up to, and show you what you still need to work on. THEY aren't about making you feel bad.

However, sometimes abusers use them to hurt you. They know what issues you still have to fix. THOUGH when you stop reacting and do the above, you actually use their poor behaviours to teach yourself to become stronger.

Take care Theressa  

And, don't act impulsively. Think about all this, but do nothing until you know what to do. First, you deal with this in your head. It is OK to say nothing to hubby and to continue to overlook his stuff until you know what you will do.

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Dear All,

I forgot to add GORDON and Robert Burney to my list of those who have helped me to grow. SO THANK YOU, THANK you, THANK you, you two great people for helping me to take baby steps, and goodness it got me all this way. WHO'D have thought that all these baby steps would leave me feeling in control of my life.

I have been doing alot of quarterbacking and thinking recently. I am learning not to react and just take criticisms and use them to my advantage.

I am also giving the things I've learnt to the catbox out of choice. I know a smart girl gives cuz she knows by doing this she can accept more from the universe.  

It helps me learn when I share my growth, Yes... YIPPEEE I am growing Yes!, Dr Irene, and I know I have a way to go, but I feel I can cope with it now. You've reached a new level in your development. There is a qualitative difference in your thoughts, feelings, and behavior. Congratulations! And, know that there will be times you feel as though you are backsliding. You are not. You are just noticing a subtler level of same ol' same ol'. And you will deal with that too - until, one day, there are just about no levels left... 

Take care Theressa

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Theressa, I've been reading the catbox posts for a long time now, and you are growing! Your posts almost sound like they're coming from a different Theressa than was posting a month or two ago... Welcome, new Theressa!

Julie - I fully understand your feelings of commitment to the marriage. No one could ever have a stronger religious background and upbringing than I did and it was that which kept me in my two abusive marriages as long as I was (13 years the first, 3 years the second time.) What helped me was realizing the damage that was being done to my children - yes, we have a commitment to our marriage, but there is no higher commitment than to our children. I could somehow excuse damage done to myself, but when I realized the hurt my children experienced and that they would carry that hurt forever and probably recreate it in their own future relationships, that's when I knew I could not stay. I was not following my own religious conscience by letting someone, even my husband, do serious and permanent damage to those that God put in my care. Whatever path you take, protect your child. Good luck. Marji  Thank you Marji.

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Hi All,

I wanted to share with you one of my buttons. It is with money. It always angered me that some people seemed to have it all. I was so concerned comparing me to them.

Then I checked out my buttons concerning money. I realised why I was so angry. Since I was an eleven year old girl when a terrible disaster struck my family home and my father couldn't work any longer, I took on a major  set of co-dependent characteristics that would lead me to experience emptiness in the year to come.

I became a controller of outcomes. I'd anticipate others' needs, and try to modify my behaviour to protect them. In the meantime, I wasn't protected. I was over responsible for them, and not responsible for me.

I wouldn't ask my mom for clothes often, and if someone at school had the latest fashion on, I didn't ask for it. I got a part-time job to buy some things, though I would buy things for school that my mother couldn't afford.

My friends got the latest fashions and never had to do without. I was jealous of them.

I was even more angry when I saw my younger sisters getting things since they pulled guilt on my mom. GOOD old responsible me never did. I guess I thought she had enough to cope with. Giggle!

My sisters still put on her to this very day. She never says NO and ends up worn out. My mom problem though not mine. You used to never say "no."

THOUGH inside I have been so angry ever since. I know now the solution would have been to: *Great stuff to teach your daughter*

Share my needs and accept a NO if he it was given. At least then some of the time I may have gotten. Instead I sat and did without and told myself I was responsible for not disappointing or upsetting my mom.

If I did ask at first when my dad was out of work she'd say. "How do you expect me to give you everything." I guess she tried to throw guilt out to me. AND BOY did I catch it.

My sister however, used guilt themselves so they continued to get.

This cycle continued into my relationship with my partner. I told myself when we were skint that it was just the way it was, no use complaining. I accepted it. I told myself my partner deserved some luxuries though because he worked so hard.

I worked too, but I was a housewife and a part-time worker, so how important is that. (VERY! I KNOW NOW.)

So again I took a back sit and didn't complain or share my needs. The good old martyr felt empty and needy inside. So I used my passive-aggressiveness a few times to get my needs met. Though I always ended up paying big time for my passive-aggressive behaviour, both in guilt and struggling to pay for the items.

Anytime my needs were met, I paid with guilt. My birthdays, the money always had to go on the bills. It was expected. Though he got to buy TV's etc. Not always but some of the time. He'd also make it worse by telling me they were his.

You see my partner was financially better off than me. He held the power. I just couldn't win him. THEN I got a better job. Things are more even now.

Though now, I do take care of my needs. I live alone and I make sure I have enough for me.

So the solution is: Ask and share your needs. Be clear, be direct, Set boundaries on responses you'll accept. THEN detach if the request is knocked back and look at other sane options. 

Sane options could include save yourself, or do something else. Take steps to get what you want. Redefine your choices.

BUT don't be a martyr even if it means you have to leave to get your needs met it is worth it. YOU ARE worth it.

Don't settle for less than you deserve, if the balance is uneven, take steps to share your needs and balance it out, if your needs are never met maybe it is time to move on.

I also realised that I am in charge of me now. I can choose what i want to spend my money on just like everyone else. I don't need to judge others, they choose their lives, I choose mine. What they spend their money on is their business. What I want is my business to work out how to take the steps to get it.

If they are given a gift, I can realise so am I maybe in other ways. God always gives us what we need. No need to be jealous.

Take care, and thank you for listening Theressa

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Theressa-

Thank you for your words. You are so right about doing things that take care of me. In fact, you couldn't have said it better. I do at times punish him for not being home for dinner, etc. I've gotten much better about accepting his work schedule. I don't take care of myself like I use to like wearing makeup, fixing my hair, etc. I tend to put a baseball cap on and not wear makeup. Now, don't get me wrong...I feel ok to do that but know that there is importance in looking good for my partner as well. He never complains about the way I look. He only complains when I seem to be down or depressed about my weight, etc. He says he wants me to be happy.

I really did take your words to heart and it was what I needed to have said to me. It is the same thing my mom keeps telling me...I need to take care of myself and do things for me and my daughter. Thank you Theressa! :)

Marji-

I do understand the importance of protecting my child. my daughter and I have a very good relationship and we talk alot. Most of what happens does not happen in her presence, but he does criticize her as well. I guess sometimes I feel like the criticisms are deserved...about attitude, behavior, etc. It's the delivery of the message I have a problem with. Excellent that you are clear on the distinction..  I'm hopeful that therapy will help us. I will say, he has improved slightly since we started therapy.

It's kind of funny that since I told him that he is a verbally abusive person he will tell me that I'm abusive to him sometimes. For instance, this morning I kicked him on the behind...in a joking manner (lightly) and then I did it again (even lighter) and he said, "you tell me that I'm abusive but what you don't realize is that you are abusive sometimes"....I laughed and told him I'm not abusive. I couldn't believe he could say something like that and believe it too! He said "as a significant person in your life, I feel abused by you at times"....he needs a reality check!  

Thanks for listening. This feels good to get this off my chest. Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Julie :)

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Theressa...

Geez, your last post really hit the nail on the head for me...

[I became a controller of outcomes. I'd anticipate others needs, and try to modify my behaviour to protect them. In the meantime I wasn't protected. I was over responsible for them, and not responsible for me. ]

That is ME! Exactly! My family too went through a tragedy when I was 13 - my youngest sister died and I became a "controller of outcomes". Have you read the codependency pages? And Burney's website?

Your post has given me a lot to think about. Thank You!

Keep posting! I am enjoying reading through your many "ah-ha" moments (which are also giving me much food for though).

OK, now where is Jay?

Kathy

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Hi,

Writing because my mom has been in an abusive relationship for around 4 years I believe. This is her longest one besides her marriage to my dad (13 yrs) My mom is co-dependant and I have (thanks to this site and others) recognized that I have these issues of codependency as well.

Here is the deal. This relationship is hurting her & our family. She has had little to no contact with my now 15 year old brother. He is extremely angry and just is beginning to actually speak to her after almost a year.

My mom has basically ditched us and has isolated herself with her boyfriend. This guy is a bipolar (her own words) and he is (I believe) emotionally and verbally abusive.

I miss my mom - believe it or not, she was a cool, caring, funny sensitive person before this and we had an awesome relationship. She and my father got to be friends and forgave each other for all the crap.

How do I approach my mom? I have told her how I felt when she has ditched out and no-showed because of her boyfriend. It has been so long since I talked to her. When we have family gatherings, she never shows up, or is shunned by other family members who do not want to be around her jerk boyfriend. She has NEVER been to visit me at any place I have lived since I was married 4 YEARS AGO. How do I get to talk to her? What should I say? This makes me mad that she is trashing herself like this for a loser like him. She sounds so depressed and sad - even her voice mail sounds depressing. He has made her quit job after job and they are almost living in poverty....

Any advice would be appreciated!

Thanks, EP

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Friday, June 15, 2001

TEST

Just trying to get through after having 2 long posts refuse to "submit."

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Friday, June 15, 2001

Well, I give up! I tried for a third time to post here and once again, I was disconnected, a reconnect unable to be established and I lost a post that took at least 20 minute to write! So I posted an amended version on the bravenet board if anyone wants to look and comment. I'd appreciate everyone's input.

I had things to say to E.P., Julie and Tim B. but will save it--afraid if I stay on too long, I'll get booted off again! gr-r-r-r-r!

Becky

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Friday, June 15, 2001

I'll try real quick, and hope I can beat the gremlins! Julie: I understand your dilemma. You made a covenant and you want to keep it. But I'm wondering if the covenant even exists anymore once one person has broken it. This is my second marriage and I don't want it to fail. But I can't fix it alone, and if I stay under these conditions I can only just survive. That doesn't sound like happiness to me. I'm struggling with the same questions you are, don't have many answers yet!

E.P., I'm not sure there is much you can say to your mom other than offer her your love and support. She is probably so depressed and overwhelmed she can see no way out. Does she have a doctor you could share your concerns with? Maybe she needs an antidepressant. Let her know that you are there to help her when she's ready, share some things from this site with her. If she can take some first steps, however small, she may be able to eventually get all the way out of there.

Tim B. I like what you said to Sharon about deserving the whole cake. I often feel that my H wants me to be happy with crumbs (those are easy to give), But I want a whole cake: a big white one with loads of chocolate frosting! BTW, if your mom won an Academy Award for I Want to Live, then she must be one of my very favorite actresses, Susan Hayward! (Your name "fits" so I trust it's you)! I LOVE her, have for ages! I once read a bio of her and was so impressed with her spunk and drive. I am very sorry she suffered so at the end of her life. I'll stop the gushing fan behavior now; funny isn't it, who we "meet" on the net?

Gonna submit this. Wish me luck! Ya did it! Yippeeee!

Becky

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Saturday, June 16, 2001

Hi, all. Someone asked where I am and here I am and tempted to stay up and write answers to everyone ..but as I just spent the  last 24 hrs in hospital again and had a lecture about Jay looking after Jay, I think I better go to bed instead.. I just haven't disappeared - I am tired though!! love, jay Hang in there AuntieJay!

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