Another lesson

Growing up we had our food portioned onto our plates, based on our preferences and what the meal contained. One of the frequently prepared meals was one of sausage, eggs and hash browns. I didn’t get eggs (I can’t stand them), so I would get one more sausage. But my mother and brother were still given more (by my mother herself). Which would have been fine, except I could eat as much as my brother. And my brother would always steal one of my sausages without getting reprimanded for it. Even though I objected to it every time. He still steals my food to this day.
Recently this was brought up at a family gathering, and my mother claimed that it had no consequences. That he doesn’t do it anymore. I told her that she was wrong. She didn’t believe me that it taught him that he doesn’t have to take what I say seriously. I didn’t tell her that it taught me that objecting to bad behavior gets you no where. And reinforces the fact that I’m insignificant and worthless. I couldn’t convey how much it hurt that he didn’t get into trouble for taking my food, when I did, if I tried to take his.

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Stop (Poem)

Stop you say

Stop feeling that way,

get over the past,

don’t take it so seriously.

Stop,

I’m over reacting

taking it the wrong way

dwelling on things best forgotten

Stop means

you don’t want to apologize

Or admit to being wrong,

being held accountable for the pain you caused.

Stop,

I’m wrecking your fun

reading the truth you don’t want me to hear

making you face the truth

So stop,

please stop.

Stop, Stop, Stop saying stop!!!

Daughters are not harder to raise

I am tired of hearing people tell me some version of “I prefer boys because they are easier  to raise.” That isn’t accurate as far as I’m concerned. The reason people think it is easier to raise a son is plain and simple sexism. We hold our daughters to higher standards then our sons. Then we belittle everything they do, watch their actions closer,  and punish them more often then boys. We encourage our sons to be arrogant and full of self importance. We encourage our sons to play rough and noisy, or we don’t stop it if they are doing so. Yet we encourage our daughters to be quiet and self contained. There is the boys will be boys, there is no equivalent saying for girls.

That is why we think raising our daughters is harder then raising our sons. If we had to control and monitor so much of our sons’ lives they would be described as equal in difficulty. Or the reverse, if we weren’t so critical of our daughters we would find it easier to raise them. So check how you treat them, if you have one of each, and make sure you give them the freedom to be who they should be.

Removing my Grandma from my life

So many moons ago I said I might explain why I have decided to remove my grandma from my life. I mean I love her, she does a lot of things for me, so why can’t I have her in my life?

Because she can’t be who I need her to be. And while she does good things for me, and I value them, it’s not enough to compensate for what she doesn’t do. Especially when she expects me to maintain an active relationship with my mother. I regret that the decision is necessary, but I was only the person who uncovered the line (I didn’t consciously draw it, only found it when it’d been tripped). I’m not the one who crossed it. And I’m sorry, the guilt tripping, gas lighting, neglect, and disregard in most areas of my life just add up to total more then the good.

When I move out, all that will be left is the bad stuff. The good will be gone. So the good:

she does everything a parent does for free (hey, I try to buy a washer, she refuses.) that’s a fair bit, and I acknowledge that I don’t help out enough. (for those who wonder what I’m including: dishes, laundry, making food, cleaning up after both of us (90% is her mess), taking the garbage out (she’s up at 3am on garbage day))

She drives me around.

She listens to me vent

The bad things:

When she listens to me vent she puts me down by saying “you need to get over it” or “you need to stop caring about what people say”

She claimed she would teach me to drive, but never followed through.

She wants me to maintain a relationship with my mother…

…and ignores (and thus implicitly condones) my mother’s bad behaviour.

…and expects me to just not let my mother’s abusive behaviour affect me.

She knew I was depressed and had General/social anxiety. and ignored it. Claiming that I needed to realize something was wrong when I was a fucking child under 12.

She has had 3 years to learn that I cannot hear her when I’m in my room, and still gets pissed when I don’t. She’s had 5.5 years to learn I tune out when I read (especially since the first 2.5 years I lived in the living room, where she was when not sleeping or working). And I mention it whenever I put on my headphones, and she still gets pissed when I don’t hear her.

She refuses to acknowledge that she favoured my brother in many things. main thing demanding I play games with him, when I refused to. (she claims I would demand everyone else do so, but never reciprocate. I disagree. And even still, it doesn’t make it right.)

She feels she can control my actions (tells me I cannot go to a fair alone at 23, or a bar (when I barely drink. If I were a heavy drinker I’d understand it. but my purpose was dancing not drinking))

She tells me my valid emotions aren’t valid.

She won’t mention something off until after someone else does, or it’s been dealt with (or is past being dealt with)

she can sit and watch TV with me puking near her without even asking if I need anything (paper towel, glass of water)

She doesn’t understand my anxiety and depression, but has enabled my mother’s for at least 30 years.

She hates my books but would accept the same behaviour if it were a video game or my computer  If I was in the front room playing it.

If I like something, and she doesn’t I don’t feel like I can do/wear it (e.g. wearing face paint or my corsets)

If I disagree with her she tries to guilt me by saying she doesn’t know what she’s talking about, and is stupid. (The tone of voice and way she says it, and the way she uses the phrase about work, make me 100% sure about this)

She expects me to stuff as much stuff as I can in my tiny tiny room (like 7x7ft) with a tiny closet, and do everything like she does. Then she doesn’t understand when my room doesn’t stay clean.

Thinks that just because she only has a tiny bit of clothing she wears, I don’t need to have as much as I do (like she could fit her wardrobe, undies and socks included in one suitcase).

She wants me to spend more time with her, but then bitches when I fidget (I am a big fidgetter. Especially when I get excited, I have to move a lot. And reading frequently triggers this) . I’ve always done this.

The me she wants me to be, for what I’ve seen, has little in common with the me I am, and where I want to go.

Why Youth No Longer Listen To Their Elders (Advice)

So, why does you internet savvy teen-aged child ignore your demand that they wear a jacket when it’s cold out; Ignore you advice not to drink milk while sick; Reading in dim light?

Well there are two completely different reasons. The first, they are teenagers, they want to make their own decisions. and really some of these things, just let them. It’s easier on the child-parent relationship if you do. Argue only when necessary not when ever they do things you think are wrong.

The second? You are likely wrong. With at least the above examples, there is no proof they will harm a person. I’ve gotten into the habit of always double checking anything I’m told my my grandmother and mother, the “facts” they are telling me are usually wrong. So why would we go to a likely faulty source when we have a source that is more reliable at hand? To make you feel better? Nope, I’m going with the truth, rather then facilitating more lies.

Though I do admit, you do have to be careful with the sources, since they can be wrong as well, always double or triple check anything.

If You Think Somethings Wrong Tell Them

So a week or two ago mental illness came up in my family. I won’t dredge up the whole conversation, but it really upset me. While I disagree with their claim that my whole family suffers from depression I will not dismiss the possibility completely (given the fact that my brother thinks the entire population does, I’m not sure they grasp what it means. And when they say things like that it diminishes my pain, via the way they say it). What pisses me off is my grandma knowing my whole life that I have anxiety issues, and that I developed depression before I was even 11 and thought the best thing to do was “let me figure out something was wrong” I was maybe 11 when I tried to commit suicide, I struggled with self worth, thinking that yeah while people cared it was out of blood not because I was worth something. Struggled in so many ways, just to stay afloat, because I had been told by my mother, my all controlling mother that nothing was wrong. Thinking that something was wrong with me (self worth, not the “I’m mentally ill” way) to cause everyone to treat me the way they did. My mother even claimed they did.
Well you know what. I did tell my mother I thought I was depressed. According to my grandma I should have just known better.

So point of this story. If you think some one might be struggling with a mental illness say something. Else really you are just as responsible for their pain as the cause. If you bring it up to them or their family you could prevent a suicide, or self harm. You could make it easier for them to successfully get treatment (the longer some one suffers from mental illness the less likely they are to fully recover, if they can. And the more likely they are to relapse). And if or when they do find out you knew, well there will be consequences, especially if you are really close to the person or family. Though the more supportive you are, the less insensitive things you say, the better things will go for you. In my grandma’s case, well she just might lose a granddaughter, because I don’t know if I can forgive her this. She might just join my mother and brother in the list of “people I will no longer speak to when I’m completely independent”

 

Morals

I want to talk a bit about morals, and not the big social ones, like why child molestation is wrong, or why incest is wrong 90% of the time (see dear prudence’s twincest letter for the other 10%). Rather the smaller more personal ones, like access to birth control, abortion.

Now I must admit, in most cases I am going to lie in the “pro” category, even if I don’t agree with the action. Because for the most part they will not effect me, or people I know in a negative way. If there are harmful side-effects from allowing something to happen (say sexual abuse from polygamist marriages) then rather then just banning them to prevent a potentially small percentage of abuse (since it hasn’t been an acceptable practice for over 1500 years, we can’t say what the actual percentage of the population would practice if it wasn’t illegal) the government should just regulate it (like they do in the example of polygamy, monogamist marriages).

For an extreme example, there are people who are extremely unhappy with a body part, usually a limb (Body integrity identity disorder) to the extent that some wish for it to be removed, and will try to force doctors to remove it. When it goes to that point, and a person will not seek psychiatric help, or it has not helped with the issue, then it should be an option. (then again only if they are willing to discuss it with a psychologist…). If a woman can say that they will never want to have kids (even if it’s they want kids but won’t because they carry a genetic disorder like Tay sachs disease), they should have the option to get their tubes tied. Same in the case of preventative medicine, if a woman or man feels her/his chances of getting a disease (example, having already been diagnosed with breast cancer. Or having had her mother and grandmother die of ovarian cancer) is too high they should be able to do so, even if the doctors disagree, and the patent finds the risk of getting the disease too stressful.

If the decision will not effect you directly, if it only really effects the person or family that makes the decision, and does no harm, why should you, or I or anyone, have a legal say in it. (and yes I do have more examples, and opinions if y’all need them on this topic)

 

Surviving Abuse Part II

So, this morning I open up my web browser and find that Michael Jackson , the late king of pop, has another sexual abuse aligation against him. By one of the young people who claimed he (MJ) had never abused him.  Then I read the comments talking about how he has to be lying now, since he said nothing was happening at the time. I cannot say which is true, except I will always believe the accuser in any case of abuse over the abuser, unless I’ve been given proof otherwise. I know people will say it’s not “guilty until proven innocent”, and while that’s true, in the case of abuse it pays to be prudent and take action to prevent further abuse.

I also know how scary it is to know or think that no one will support you if you say “___ abused me”. I know how it is to spend a decade lying to yourself, your family, the police, everyone, and say that nothing bad happened to you. I spent that long covering for my father. I spent even longer covering for my mother. Why? because as children we are taught not to say bad things about our parents. We are taught our parents love us the most, that they will never hurt us, that they know best. That if our parents do hurt us (spanking, for example) or get mad at us it’s our fault (we broke a rule). As I said before in Part I,  we are expected to forgive them, to keep them in our lives no matter what they did. We are told lies about what will happen if we contact the authorities (be it social services or the police). They could be the better parent, or the understanding uncle, the mother who seems to do anything for her kids (but emotionally abuses them, blames them for everything). Then there is the “bad things only happen to other people” mentality.  the thoughts are like this “It can’t be that bad, I’m blowing things out of proportion”, “It was only a bad dream, I made it, didn’t I (oh god I hope I was only dreaming)”, “It was my fault [insert reason] so it can’t be abuse” “dad would never do that”. Its scary, when it is happening, the person has made themselves important to you (or is an immediate family member), you don’t want that positive (because they need you to feel good, so you’ll get attached) influence in your life gone, but you don’t want to be active in letting the abuse happen (for sexual abuse), or because you are told you will loose your whole family if you get help (verbal abuse).

What kept going through my head with my father, like I said “this can’t be happening” “it has to be a dream” “oh god please shut up”, depending on the moment. Before his arrest for abusing someone else, he was the better parent, both my brother and I had so much more support from him, and life was so much better with him. I mean my mother was the emotionally abusive controlling bitch, my father was the supportive, but strict parent (who likes to touch little girls). My father’s abuse touched a lot less of my life (though I doubt would have stayed that way). So I told myself it couldn’t be happening. When he got arrested I kept hearing my mother (who would have no actual way of knowing, as she didn’t live with him at the time) deny what happened, saying they were making it up. If they were making it up, I had to be making it up, I couldn’t hurt my family this way, by admitting it (and wrecking my whole world). Not that these were conscious thoughts, I was only 11 or so at the time. Most of the denial, that lead me to deny what happened, it was completely unconscious. I actually was waiting for some one to say “stop lying kathlynn and tell us the truth” not that I would have. ’cause you know in a kids mind denial makes it the truth, I didn’t want it to happen, so it didn’t and I would deny it. And guess what. I came pre-brainwashed not to tell, since my mother was doing her own “programming” at the time, teaching me not to tell social services that she was emotionally abusive, kept the house a mess, and only got us medical treatment because of our dad (and his insurance), and later other family members some how forcing her to.

That’s why I don’t instantly dismiss the claims that he was abused, because it’s possible. Completely possible. Kids lie easier then adults some times, especially when they are lying to protect themselves and their families or friends. And when I read the comments about how he has to be lying now, because he denied it in the past, do you know what I hear? “yeah you were right to never go to the police kathlynn, when you stopped denying it happened, because no one will believe you” So EVERYONE who automatically says that the guy is a liar is supporting rapists every where, supporting rape culture, supporting child abuse. Because you are supporting the thought that no one will believe you, and that you are a big fat liar.

So STOP SILENCING ME

that’s all, just please people stop voicing this as your first thought, Please, even if it’s true, it effects more then just this case, it effect all abuse survives

 

Once again Emotions suck

I’ve so many posts going through my mind, but I cannot seem to grasp them when I’m at my computer. And my emotions are swirling all over the place, I’m so blah, sorta sad, but generally in a good place. But I can feel the depression there in the back of my mind, trying to push forward. The anxiety has been triggered so much I haven’t had a chance to relax (a couple small health concerns, doctors appointment soon, triggering it). My mother visiting, causing me to be constantly on my guard and pushing my buttons.

so hopefully I’ll be able to get these thoughts down in the next few weeks or months

the biggest one (and only one I can remember right now, since my mind went blank) is “why we need to change the “statutory rape” laws to “sexual-coercion” laws” (implications, wording, and keeping innocent people out of jail)

Remember, if you want my opinion on something, or have an idea for me to write (or would like for me to draw attention to your post) email me at kstruggles@hotmail.ca and I will consider it.

vulnerable

I am vulnerable. I admit it, I try to fix it but it’s the truth. I do not like to argue. I’ve done so too much in the past. So I walk away from arguments, I refuse to participate. But that makes people get more aggressive or think that you admit that you are wrong. It makes them feel more powerful. I do not have a way with words (out side of writing them down), my brain has to focus too much on containing my emotions, so I don’t scream, cry or yell out the wrong shit. It also differs because I cannot argue every point because I cannot remember them. People do not prove their points yet expect me to prove mine. I find out their lies but cannot confront them without causing drama I’m supposed to avoid. This all makes me vulnerable. Other people cause the problems but I am supposed to fix them, let it go, or compromise (with me the looser). I accept responsibility, we can argue whether or not I take enough, too much, or not. But I do so in way many people I know don’t. I do not shirk my financial obligations, or things I feel obligated to do. Even if I don’t want to. While I wouldn’t marry some one out of obligation, it is a spot I’m vulnerable at. Because I’ve known too many people who aren’t responsible, and that shaped me to be honorable. But honor leads to vulnerability you cannot be completely honorable without getting taken advantage of. People can also hid who they are, So I sometimes trust the wrong people until it’s too late and I am taken advantage of (say house sitting when I don’t want to, or moving in with another person). I do not lie without reason. I may avoid mentioning something (like admitting to using my mp3 player when caught but not my cellphone at work), but that happens as rarely as a lie. It leaves me vulnerable because people still believe I lie, or for example accuse me of stealing and it upsets me. I do not lie, there is no proof of any wrong doing, yet people feel the to accuse me of doing so.