Posts tagged ‘Father’

August 24, 2011

Normal?

It is hard to gauge, when you have a history, what is normal and what is not. As I mentioned in my last post I was not sure if I had the will to be OK. I felt as if I were cracking into pieces again.

The first months after my Dad died was very tough. The truth is it would have been tough for most people. The difference is history. My history!

As each day passed I began to sleep, which as I have mentioned is a big part of the battle!

But after a month of struggling I knew it was time for action. First order of business – call Sinead and make an appointment. Sinead helped me gauge where I was. That is – where I was in the grieving process.

Everything that I was describing to her was normal. A normal part of the grieving process.

I was not creating chaos. I was not overreacting. I was not staying up for days at a time. I was not agitated. I was not irritable. I was just sad.

I was going to be OK. But once you have been down the road such as mine you know you must still be proactive.

In order to continue on the right path I needed a voice. A voice to finally say so much I had held onto for so long. My Dad was gone and he would never hear what I had to say, but I needed to be able to say it anyway.

I started this blog, one year ago, August 27th.

I choose my path – not bipolar disorder, not my Dad, not depression.

I have chosen happiness. I have chosen to remove all the labels!

And through this blog, I have chosen to no longer live in the dark. I live in the light, and I love every single moment of it!

July 27, 2011

Before and after my Dad died

I was numb. I was shocked. Although I knew it was coming, somewhere in the back of my mind I just could not process the thought of him dying. Not only dying, but committing suicide. But after he did kill himself I was OK with his death. I was not hurt or angry that he had killed himself. I understood why he would and he had explained why he was going to do it.

But when we got a copy of his will, that is when I became angry and hurt. It is not that I wanted money. It was that he left my step-sister pretty much everything. He left my brother a bug chunk of money as well (which I expected). But me and my sister – $500! And that was not the hurtful part.

What hurts?

1) When your own father misspells your name in his will.

Yes, he did not even spell my name right!

But, two, was the conversation I had not long before his death that hurt the most!

I thought I would have the opportunity to go back to him and readdress what he said.

But that day never came.

July 24, 2011

After the reunion, what I always wanted to be

As I posted in this blog: https://nomorevictim.wordpress.com/2011/06/08/the-family-reunion/ I found that I had become very strong.  I could stand up for myself, I could face challenges, and I could walk away from a situation without feeling defeated.

This was a defining moment in my life. My life became clearer – sharper, and so did I!

Within a year, I decided to go to college. And soon I will be graduating with my AA and transferring to Sam Houston State to get my BA in Education! I currently have a 4.0! I am the student I always wanted to be.

I may have never asked my Dad those 8 questions, but what I did do was become the daughter I always wanted to be even though my Dad would never be the Dad I had always wanted.

I am the wife I always wanted to be. After that fateful day, I no longer leaned on my husband for emotional support. I discovered I could take care of myself. This new sense of self helped me to be the wife I always wanted to be. No jealousy, no anger, and no fear of abandonment.

Today, I am what I always wanted to be, but never imagined that I could be.

Happy!

But I will admit, it takes work and dedication to be happy. Is it worth it? Hell yes it is!

July 9, 2011

One Year Ago

My dad and my brother, less than a month before my dad committed suicide.

July 7th was the one year anniversary of my father’s death.  My brother, sister, and I all met for dinner on Thursday.  We talked about that day:  how we felt, what we were doing when each of us received the news, and how we feel now.

Incredibly, I feel no sadness.  For me, my father is not really dead.  Since Elly made the memorial service about her and the fact that we were not allowed to see his body, my father’s death has never felt real.

In reality, it does not matter much to me whether he is alive or dead.  Oh it did for a little while, but today I feel neutral.

From 2008 until his death, I cared. I knew he would be dying sooner rather than later and I wanted to get to know my dad.  And the truth is, I kind of did.  But I was to afraid to ever ask him the questions I really wanted to know.

Being a victim of sexual abuse, I believe, makes you afraid to open up conversations with the abuser.  I was afraid to ask him why.  I was afraid to ask him anything about it.  I was afraid he would tell me it was all my fault!

June 8, 2011

The Family Reunion

As that day in September of 2008 approached, I was filled with anxiety.  Not only would my Dad be there, but so would my Nanny and my sister (who I had not seen nor spoken to since 2005).

In addition, I was completely off of all psychotropic medication.  I was managing my life well, but still lived in fear of having a setback.

I had a plan on how to handle almost every situation that came at me while I was there. If my Nanny made mention of my relationship with m Dad, I would just tell her that we would talk about it later and that it was her birthday and I was there to celebrate her. If my sister would not speak to me, I was OK with that too. I know at some point I had hurt her enough to where she no longer felt comfortable with me in her life. I was OK with that, I had felt that way about others in my life and, although I was not sure why, I could understand not wanting chaos in my own life. My Dad, well he had a way of getting under my skin… my weight. All of my life I had been to fat in his opinion. And when I lost all of that weight, every time he saw me, he would say how great it was that I had finally lost some weight. It is sad really, because as thin as I was, I was very unhealthy. However, by 2008, I had started gaining weight back. The ultimate plan was to leave. Mike and I, even today, have a deal… if ever one or the other wants to leave a situation – we will leave together. No matter what.

As we arrived my Nanny was driving up as well. (That’s right, on her 95th birthday she was driving up!) As I greeted her the first thing she asked me was if I had seen and talked to my Dad. I replied I had not but I was sure he was inside. I am sure my discomfort gleamed on my face. She just gave me a hug and then walked inside. She never mentioned a word to me again that day about my Dad.

As I finally made it inside I saw my Dad, my brother and my sister. I felt this incredible sense of dread come over me. But as I got closer my brother hugged me and whispered in my ear “Everything will be alright.” My sister then gave me a hug and said, with tears in her eyes, that she had missed me. I told her I had missed her too. Then I made my way round to the rest of the family, giving hugs and asking how everyone was doing. And then I saw my Dad.

Dad, “Hey there Pooh (my childhood nickname) you look like you are gaining weight.” I replied, “Dad, I love you, but my weight is none of your business.” I remember Mike reaching for my hand. My Dad turned red then said, “well you look good.”

Then I noticed his leg! It was awful looking and for whatever reason I immediately ask if his cancer had returned. He hushed me and said he just thinks it is a cream he used. But you could see it in his face, he knew what I had said was probably the case. Then he said he was going to the doctor next week.

My Dad’s own words “At Labor Day the start of September my right leg began to swell and look very muscular. I guessed because that was where I was rubbing testosterone gel on it and it was just becoming muscular and strong. I was so wrong. By the middle of September the leg had changed to a blue-green-yellow color and my wife had me go see my favorite GP-MD. When he saw the leg he said CANCER. Another PSA was done and came back at 51.6.

In October my right leg began to bleed and produce a whitish liquid. Pus I guess. This lasted a few weeks and then cleared up.”

That day will live in my mind forever, it was the beginning of the only relationship I ever really had with my Dad and it was the beginning of a renewed relationship with my sister. It was also the last celebration I would have with my Nanny.

The relationship with my sister is still alive today. Sadly, I do not believe it will ever be what it once was. My heart was broken when she left in 2005 and cut me off, and although I am sure she had her reasons, I can never suffer that hurt again. So I will guard my heart forever. It will always be somewhat fragile. Broken pieces put back together, no matter how strong the glue might be, are never as strong as they were when the heart was whole.

The relationship with my Dad was a ruse. I had no idea until his death that I was a pawn in his life to get the attention he needed and/ or wanted from his wife. In addition, I believe he knew that without some type of a relationship with me he would never get to know my son. And being a grandfather to Jake was something he really wanted. Despite that, I am glad I had it. I learned so much during the time with my Dad. Although, in the beginning, I was just a tool to gain attention from Elly, as time went by I think maybe for the first time ever he began to see me as his daughter. And for the first time possibly ever, I think he felt remorse. Not only for what he had done to me and my sister, but for what he had done to my Mom. A week before he died, he disclosed his part in her death. Something many had suspected over the years.

He was there!

April 4, 2011

Depression

According to the World Health Organization depression is a common mental disorder.

Facts
Depression is common, affecting about 121 million people worldwide.
Depression is among the leading causes of disability worldwide.
Depression can be reliably diagnosed and treated in primary care.
Fewer than 25 % of those affected have access to effective treatments.

According to the Mayo Clinic there are numerous depression treatments available. Medications and psychological counseling (psychotherapy) are very effective for most people.

But is medication really a treatment or a tool?

Medication serves a purpose. If someone is so depressed that they can no longer function or have become suicidal it can be a used as a tool. It can help a person to be able to get to a place where they can start to understand why they are depressed and how to not be depressed.

But a treatment?

You cannot treat years of abuse with a pill. You cannot treat a lifetime of dysfunction with a pill. You cannot treat low self esteem or self worth with a pill. You certainly cannot treat self hatred with a pill.

Depression is insidious and cannot be cured overnight, in a week, or even in a month. And it cannot be cured with a pill.

So how is depression cured? In my experience, with the right tools. You all have read about “The Shovel”, which I had been using for years the only way I had ever been shown to use it. I not only needed new life tools, but I needed someone to show me how to use them!

Building a life tool kit! Finding someone to teach you the correct way to use life tools!

Step one – find a therapist!
Find a therapist you feel comfortable enough with to share. Find a therapist you feel uncomfortable enough with that you do not feel like they are a friend. (We tell friends what we think they want to hear).

Step two – Tell your therapist what you expect from therapy and that you need their help so they must be able to demand your honesty.
By setting the stage of what you expect from your therapist, you are setting the stage for real healing. I told Sinead “I am done with feeling like shit, I want to be happy and I need for you to be tough and help me do that!”

Step three – do it!
Be honest! I used to find a therapist and just give enough information to get through the session. Why? Who was I helping? Not me!

Step four – do the work!
If you come up with a plan of action with your therapist, follow through! As I discussed in “Toxic Relationships” I rehearsed conversations with Sinead. I also came up with several plans with Sinead and I followed through!

Step five – do not stop until you are done! I have been through a slew of therapist over the years. I never really got anywhere with any of them and never saw the same one for longer than a couple of months. But I saw Sinead for years. And even though I have not seen her on a regular basis in a couple of years I know if I need her she is a phone call away. I actually went to see her soon after my father killed himself.

April 3, 2011

Where next?

Healing toxic relationships are the most important part of my recovery. By acknowledging them and identifying why they are toxic I am able to keep balance in my life.

But healing toxic relationships are only a part of my journey to sanity and recovery. So I think I will attempt to dispel all of my diagnosis over the years.

First, I think it is important for my readers to understand that I do not deny there is depression, bi-polar disorder, personality disorders, etc. What I do want you to know, for my life anyway, is that medication does not heal any of these, nor is it something I will need forever.

A psychiatrist once told me, “You have an imbalance and in order to fix that imbalance you will need to take medication the rest of your life. Much like someone who is a diabetic.” That was a lie.

It is a lie I have heard many times!

March 26, 2011

Toxic Relationships – my Dad

Some can’t be healed!

To much hurt to heal.

But I loved my Dad.

Last night I attended Relay for Life.  It is an event to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

My Dad had prostate cancer.  I could not light a candle for him.  I did not add his name to the list of those to be remembered.

I cried last night.  I cried for those who had lost their children to cancer.

I cried for those who had lost their siblings, mothers, grandmothers, fathers and grandfathers to cancer.

I cried because my Dad fought cancer but I could not bring myself to honor his memory.  He just does not deserve it.

I cried because I could not dare place his name beside the little girl I was there for, to honor her memory.

One day, as this blog moves forward I will go in depth into my toxic relationship with my Dad.  It was so toxic the best I could do was attempt to set some boundaries I could live with and still have him in my life.

He remained on the outer edge of my life until he died.

I cried last night.  And I am OK this morning.  Happy to have the day to enjoy my life!

October 26, 2010

Indecency with a child?

Soon after Bobby and I got married, my sister (a brave little soul) filed charges against my Dad.  I will never forget being called into the DA’s office in Montgomery County.  I sat across a desk of a man I had never met as he questioned me about my Dad.  Intimate questions.  I bit my nails until they bled.  I thought my heart would stop right then and right there.  Everything that I had been through was being exposed by a stranger.

I will have to say he was very nice.  But still, it was like a dream.  Well, more like a nightmare.  Isn’t it strange that after everything I had been through this was a nightmare?  You would think I would be so relieved.  But instead I was afraid.  Afraid of no longer having a Dad.  Afraid of no longer having a brother and a sister.  All I heard was “Your brother and  sister will go into the custody of the state.”  “Your Dad will probably go to jail.”  No sister, no brother, no Dad… and certainly no Mom (she was already dead).

Despite those words I told the truth.  I had to.  I had to pick… him or my sweet little sister.  How could I choose him over her?  I couldn’t, but I can tell you now for a moment I had to consider it.  But it took me less than a second.  I choose her!  Not only because she was telling the truth but she is my sister!

I asked him “Where did she find the courage to tell?”  “And I am so glad someone finally believed it!”  When he asked me what I meant, I told him I had told.  I told when my Mom died and no one did anything!  No one cared enough about us to do shit! <- my exact words.

He said he was sorry that had happened but now someone was going to do shit! <- his exact words!

My Dad had a good attorney, Nelda Luce, and plead guilty to one count of indecency with a child in order to avoid a trial and possible jail time.

He received ten years probation.  He was never required to register as a sex offender.  And of that ten years he did about 6.

October 13, 2010

My Dad hits on friends and getting yelled at by a preacher during church!

At Conroe High School I found new friends and one became a better friend than most of the others.  Cassie was a doll!  I loved hanging out with her and we spent a lot of time together.  I am not sure why, but one weekend she and I ended up at my Dads.  The next weekend I was spending at her house.  And on Sundays her family went to church so I would go with.  I was 14 or 15 yrs old so by this time I knew better than to discuss my Dads beliefs or lack of with anyone.  So no big deal!

However, just as she and I were walking into church she told me that my Dad had tried to “make a move” on her.  I was devastated.  As we walked into church I began to cry.  And as church began I was sobbing.  The preacher stopped his sermon and yelled at me for making so much noise.  I will never forget it.  I ran out and into the bathroom where I stayed for the rest of the service.  Finally, Cassie came and got me.  I had her Mom take me home.  I don’t think Cassie and I talked much ever again.

I realized, at that moment, the numbers could be countless as to how many girls (my friends) my Dad had either molested or attempted to molest.  I was devastated but even more embarrassed!

Soon after I left Conroe High School and went back to Willis, where I stayed with Angie, Benita and Ray (my neighbors growing up).  My reasons for leaving my Mom and moving in with a friend and her Dad had little to do with this incident actually.  My Mom’s drinking was out of control and I just could not take it any more.  Obviously I would never go back and live with my Dad.  Ironically, I lived just two houses down from him at Ray’s but never saw him.  Soon my mother would get a job at TDC as a nurse at the Ellis II unit and leave Conroe herself.   And soon, once again, my life would change dramatically!

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