Blame Take Two

Blame: Take Two

I guess, like anyone, blame and shame are my biggest issues. In reality, I would never blame a child for the atrocities of its parents; I would see him or her as innocent, and a victim of their parent’s wrong doings. Yet, when it comes to me, I cannot. I blame myself and no matter how much the evidence is stacked up against my parents, I cannot change it. If I even try, it feels like lies.

One of the factors of blame, is understanding the’ why’ question, and because that is almost impossible to answer, the only conclusion a child can draw on, is that it must be their fault.

For those who read this blog and don’t know, I study Psychology and during a recent lesson, we studied a Psychologist named, Stanley Milgram.blame_700

He investigated why Nuremberg war criminals in WWII, carried out acts of genocide. Was it simply because Germans were made different and, therefore, cruel?

He believed they were, and tested his theory with an experiment. He asked ordinary people to volunteer as teachers and had actors as the learner. The teachers thought they were simply there for a memory test, but that was not the case.

Milgram set up the teacher and the learner in different rooms. The learner was strapped to a chair and attached to a buzzer that gave them an electric shock. The teacher was in another room and asked the learner a question. For each question they got wrong, the teacher would administer an electric shock. These shocks went along a scale, starting at nothing more than a quick nip of volts, to 450 volts, which was fatal.

In the room with the teacher, was an experimenter, (an actor) who appeared to be taking notes and watching. The teacher could not see the learner, only hear them.

However, what they really heard, was a recorded voice. They weren’t really electrocuting people, they just believed they were. Eventually, as the voltage got higher, the voice would plead, asking for no more, and eventually it went silent, leaving the teacher not knowing if the learner was unconscious or simply not responding.

Of course, as the cries or the silence got worse, the teacher often became stressed, but the experimenter in the room would simply state that it was vital to the experiment and to please continue (they did have the right to leave at any time).

Milgram found that over 60% of people went to the fatal 450volts and, when asked later, he concluded that like the Nazi, it was not down to ethnicity, but rather obedience. If people did not hold the blame, they could continue.

My father, like many the same, told me, it was my fault. I wanted it. I asked for it. I liked it and his personal favourite that I gained everything in my life through sex. It would seem the case, even using it to gain my father’s love and attention. The way he worded thing caused me to  take the blame because what he said was logical.

What if Milgram’s theory applies here? My father convinced himself that it was what I wanted. He believed his own lies, removed blame, and gave it to me. He believed he was doing what I wanted, what I liked and what I offered.  He was being obedient.

Making it my fault and not his, made it okay for him to do what he did.

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Digging for triggers not treasure

Digging for triggers not treasure.

The world of mental illness is often shied away from by those that do not understand and those that live in it suffer the shame of the things that can’t be helped.

I realise something has triggered me big in my head, but I do not know what it is, when I get to it, then the wave of issues I am riding will ease and I will be able to breathe once more.

I stood today and washed my hands for the third time in a row, I saw the look on a strangers face, I saw the thoughts, the way they paused as thy spoke to me. I felt my own shame flush my face because I knew that my hands were still not clean and the person was staring.

The worst part of suffering a mental illness is the looks from people.

People say they are tolerant and understanding to it, but in truth they are not. They stare, they judge and if rude enough they point.

My hands are sore. They are cracked and bleed so bad that I look like I’ve gone ten rounds with a grater. I cannot get then clean. I’ve fallen into my OCD cycle and no idea how to get out of it or what set me off.

I cannot touch anything. I have to shower before I go to bed, I feel the days dirt all over me like an invisible film. It’s dirt inside and I can of get clean, but I keep trying.

I feel like I’m crazy. I know people see me as crazy. In some ways I am crazy. I’ve self harmed almost daily that I don’t even try and stop it, it’s just another right for me to lose.

If I could just find the buried trigger, it would be like a treasure to mind. The treasure of freedom.

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Birthday Wishes

I find that the people that touch us the most are the ones we don’t expect to come along. They pop up like surprise and leave you feeling great inside. Maybe that’s their purpose, maybe it’s our purpose to pop into each other’s lives and make them better. If we stay or go, I don’t think it matters, but as long as the footprint that gets left behind is one of love and kindness, that is what is important.

Last month I received an email that touched me in such a way, from a wonderful young girl who had read my books and taken to them so much that she wrote a fan fiction. It felt so amazing to mean that much to a reader, that she would spend time on something and message me about it.

Today is her birthday. I wanted to make sure that she knew how much I appreciated what she had done and loved what she had written. She truly is an amazing writer.

Happy Birthday Nafisa!!! 

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I hope that your day is as wonderful as you are and that you enjoy it to the fullest. It’s your day, this one and everyone after it. Make them your own and thank you for taking the time to write and to message me. I hope that you keep writing, you work was so great to read.

Happy Birthday once again,

Much love and care.

JD

Covert Incest.

Covert Incest.

I had never heard this term before, not once. It’s also known as emotional incest, but because the name states the word, incest, I should clear up that it does not involve any sexual activity at all.hug

Often, a part of child abuse that is overlooked, is the emotional side. It’s hard to realise that the years following abuse, are usually far worse than the incidents themselves. However, the emotional side is much harder to understand. As a victim, it is more difficult to realise that this abuse is what had also occurred.

I learnt about this concept earlier this week. I read it with my mouth hung upon, my mind uttering, oh my god, several times, and the realisation that everything my parents did, was one form of abuse or another.

What is covert incest? Exactly that. A relationship between family members that shouldn’t happen. Be it mother and son, father and daughter, mother and daughter, father and son. It is when the child is not treated as a child, but an adult and is put upon by the actual adult and his or her emotional needs. Often, it’s a biased relationship on the adults side, with the child really having little understanding of what is happening or what is expected of them.

They play the role of the parent’s emotional support. It is the parent crossing boundaries that shouldn’t be crossed. Roles are reversed and the child ends up being emotionally responsible for the needy parents well being.

I realise that this is something I endured with both my parents. Perhaps, this added to my feelings of being responsible, and the idea that I cannot shift, of making my parents the way they were. They gave me the responsibility by putting an adult world into my child mind.

My mother often sat me in the bathroom with her for hours at a time, using me as her sounding board. When we were out, it was my job to look after her and when she was afraid, I would get her home safe, and reassure her that everything was fine. I tried to hug her when she was upset. I complimented her and encouraged her. It was I who made her feel better about herself, and listened day after day, to her imaginary affair with one of our doctors.

Where was she, for me? She wasn’t, and I was only used if the family needed a scapegoat, if something was wrong, or if my mother was feeling bad.

Of course, by doing this, I learnt that if I said the wrong thing, I was beaten. I learnt the answers she wanted to hear. I learnt what made her feel good, what got her up in the morning.

Maybe this is why I feel responsible for my father’s wellbeing after I have told him to leave me alone, because they made everything my responsibility and my fault. How do I undo that?

The Long Term Effects (from CovertIncest.org):

Relationship problems are endemic amongst covert incest survivors. They often fall for the wrong type of partner—someone who is a replica of their invasive parent. Thus, their emotional needs remain unfulfilled which leads to unhappy relationships.

 

Because of the conflicting emotions that result from growing up with an invasive parent, survivors usually find themselves both attracted and repulsed by members of the opposite sex (or same sex, depending on their sexual orientation and gender of the invasive parent).

 

In addition, since the atmosphere in which they were raised was sexually charged, it is common for survivors of covert incest to use sex as a means to intimacy. This can result in sexual addiction or other types of dysfunctional behaviors as an adult.