If you have difficulty adapting to Russel Brand’s speed of speaking; he speaks a little slower in this. 🙂
Hope it brings you some answers. I am happy that I quit.
If you have difficulty adapting to Russel Brand’s speed of speaking; he speaks a little slower in this. 🙂
Hope it brings you some answers. I am happy that I quit.
Several months ago deep darkness settled on me and I could not free myself of it. I also doubt if I wanted to free myself of it. Stepping into the light and then falling back again and again hurt so badly that I wondered if I would ever dare to live again.
As you might have read I visited the insurance doctor from the social security benefits I live off momentarily. That was the start of the darkest period in my live on earth. There was nothing really to keep me going other than the fact that life does not ‘just stop’. Suicidal thoughts were on my mind 24/7, I ate, drank, dreamed and lives darkness and destruction. I was emotionally not able to travel for more that 30 minutes out of my house: too much impressions, too afraid of the openness, not enough seclusion so my social life was limited to a few friends close by. Others I did not call or write because, well, because. My Facebook page however looked fabulous as ever.
I realise with writing this, the darkness is not far away enough yet for me to be comfortable and I should not be looking it up.
Long story not so short:
I found a shrink. I was looking for a female, older person with knowledge of EMDR. I got a younger male without knowledge of EMDR. And this is where it all started. :-D. Within one hour my transfer of ‘little brother (in the womb) I need to take care off otherwise I will destroy him’ reality was in fully in place. Very much a WTF experience. I never ever realised that this, what is called the ‘reliving the dream of the womb’ in which my womb twin brother died and from there on the transfer of all these emotions and reactions to it is actually REALLY REALLY happening. I thought it was something metaphorical untill it happened in me and with me and right in front of me with this young shrink! Baffling! It is really amazing. And it is pretty dark. Very much life and death. But I guess that is the process I once got stuck in and have to work through. Working on it. I was very happily surprised to find he is familiar with womb twin survivor syndrome and willing to listen to this. You can’t imagine how much emotional, psychological and physical stress even that tiny ‘not having to fight for my truth to be accepted’ releases.
I also…. found a physiotherapist who is more into relaxation techniques, releasing stress and trauma which is caught in the body. We speak once a week, do some very tiny (breathing) exercises which release a lot of stress too.
And….. hurrah hurrah…. my GP who is also a homoeopathic doctor found me ‘Stramonium’. Stramonium is a homeopathic medicine made from the Datura plant. PLEASE NOTE I got this diluted to the 1000th decimal, meaning that there is not one active molecule of this poisonous plant in what I ingested. So don’t go strolling about, eating the weeds in your garden when feeling depressed ;-). That is different.
By the way: if we take out all the space between the tiny thingies which build up a molecule of anything in this world, and the world itself, we end up with a cube the size of a sugar cube. All that ‘matter’ in the sugar cube does a sort of Lucky Luke trick in running around at high (!!!!) speed so it looks like it is VERY PRESENT and VERY BIG while actually it is very tiny. ❤ The rest is energy. So I think what we call ‘matter’ is not matter but energy, and the idea that matter is ‘the only thing which matters’ is not so very true as regular, homeopathy defying doctors would like me to believe. I have no issues believing that energy can be transferred in other ways than through matter. I mean…. how about love? And hate? That can actually be tangible and heal or hurt.
Datura Stramonium historically was and probably is somewhere, used as a natural medicine but mainly as a trip agent. It is also deadly poisonous at very small amounts so haha, not advising that.
Stramonium in the homeopathic version brought out the darkness in me. If you look at the plant itself and the vibes you get from the photo you might get an inkling of the quality of the darkness. First it became bigger but very clear. And it helped me find words for what I was feeling. I walked into another world where everything was dead as dead can be. Even a plastic cup in this world is more alive than the dead trees in the Stramonium world. Nothing, nothing, nothing responded, no vibes, no energy. Just nothing. No time, no wind, no movement, stillness, even the light which was there did not warm or brighten the place. Imagine a scene for a Goth movie with an abandoned castle frozen in a dark time and then in real life, as a reality. Well, dark. The British Homeopathic Organisation has a beautiful writing about this world. There is more online if you would be interested in this. Please do add the word ‘homeopathy’ to you search because you definitely don’t want to get mixed up in the real undiluted stuff.
First time I got handed the remedy the darkness actually spread through my hand and arm and I recognised it as that which was pressing on my shoulders. Long story short: I took the medicine several times, every time I would lighten up for a few days, even walk around ‘stoned’ and have significant dreams and strange experiences. Then I would fall back and within all that emotional movement some air, some light, some stress relieve came. No insights though. Normally with homeopathy I get some ‘Yeah! NOW I GET IT’ reaction but this did not happen. At first.
Before I took Stramonium my dreams were 1 to 1 comparisons to the video of Alan Walker’s song ‘Faded’. No people, no response, no nothing. If there were people they would be having their backs to me and not respond to anything. That’s ah, pretty alone.
But dreams changed! My god. PEOPLE!! IN MY DREAMS!!! For f! sake! So tiring…. every night there would be more people. And the colours would be so bright that it turned into a I don’t know, medieval summer/autumn festival. But, back to the people: the would be asking stuff, for advice, or just mentioning stuff and I would be giving advice, and helping, and giving and helping and giving and helping and waking up more tired than I went to bed.
That went on for several nights and in between I had a dark dream too – which I then experienced for its real quality: no connection, no life, no time, darkness – not peace but no interference either. And then there would be a people dream again. Effing hell! In one dream I helped/advised about 30 different people on what to do and what not to do. I felt they would die if I did not do what I did. Like my brother did, because I left him. Some of them took it and were really happy, others were like: “Why would I do that, that would change me and I want to hang onto the misery I got.” and others were like “Who is she?!” I would assume this is a perfect mirror of my world and my online world :-(.
Well, I am happy I got that mirror but more importantly, felt how all these worries of mine about other people and situations connected to me, and put their tiny little hooks in me and me putting large hooks in other people’s aura. Control issues much? Yes. I did not help my brother. He died. If I do not give it all, people die, companies go broke, production fails, my mother dies, my living brother gets attacked…. Patterns and energetic wires became clear and I could really feel them as almost solid lines to my aura. Very sickening to realise how energetically wrong and unsustainable this state of being and living is. Also very informative. 🙂 / 😦
Through a FB friend I got a list of co-dependency traits from Melody Beattie of 2 pages A4. All but 3 or 4 applied. So, yeah. Work to do.
I went to the physiotherapist and we spoke about this. When doing a breathing exercise I could let go of all the hooks and immediately I sank into my own body. My body became mine. 🙂 I started yawning and did not stop till about 10 minutes after. 🙂 I still yawn when I do breathing exercise when starting to meditate.
Obviously this insight will need practice to become a way of living but it is already very helpful. I finally got to do stuff again. Like ‘going out of the house for some activity’ or actually cooking something again. I did YouTube Tai Chi. Hahaha…. Within 20 minutes exercise in which I yawned continuously, I exploded with energy and my cat came over and started meowing in a concerned voice. She stood up against my leg then walked me to the bedroom and looked at the bed. That is her way of saying: you need to go to bed. She started doing that after her last kitten left the house and she usually she does that in the night. I think she had a point, I was all over the place. 🙂 So I lay down and took a rest.
So, I got part of my mojo back. And with that I see another pattern: whenever I get my mojo back it comes back in such an overwhelming way that I want to DO EVERYTHING and end up doing nothing because I can not decide and I can not settle. There is a saying in Dutch and it says ‘With you it is either running or standing still’ – very much a black and white womb twin survivor addictive personality thing. I wonder if this is the bi-polar hyperactivity thing they speak about in books on womb twin survivors often being bi-polar.
One way to guide that energy is to move in to a shopping spree on things about THE NEW subject. I bought books, again. It is a pattern. I hardly ever read more than 20-30 pages but I feel insecure in not having them.
Also, my will can not be guided yet. The loss of will power is a thing related to Stramonium as well. Only in very very tiny things like: putting air in my tires before biking, or twice now I put away the chocolate and started cooking. I also meditated 5 days in a row. Which is good. But I have no clue what to do with the empty mind and rest I get from it. No needs, no wants, no nothing. This is where the stressjunk in me kicks in and goes looking for trouble so I guess this needs some looking into. I have the idea it is related to the womb trauma but I am not sure how.
But I guess Rome was not built in one days so maybe I should give the issues with willpower some time. 😀
I am happy that I quit. The last months have been very dark and even though I am above zero now mood wise I still fear to fall back into the abyss. Not sure if I can go through that again. 😦 Life has become more interesting though now I see myself as somebody who has been in a traumatic situation and had developed coping skills from there which have now lost their use and need changing.
In the 4 years plus of not drinking I have been working towards being ‘sober’, sometimes I am, sometimes I am lost in my own darkness and need to self-medicate with chocolate, Netflix, chips and cheese. I have no clue what the heck I came to do on this earth, that is confusing sometimes and terrifying at other times. I am approaching 50 years of age and have no job. Even though in the past I have had no big difficulty obtaining a job, I have had a lot of difficulty keeping it. I notice now that this scares me a lot. But also…. I am running ahead. I am just, possibly, out of the woods, a few days above zero and I start running to try to plan a carreer. Better to stay with what is. There is so much information in this process of getting ‘out of’ the darkness. I guess I should take the same approach as I did when getting out of drinking: sit with what is, experience the feelings that pop up, see the patterns, be witness to myself. And for a change: ask for help. 😉
Hey, I did! To be true it was not so much for me but more to spare my friends because I felt I was losing them because I became too dark too often. I guess this is just another way of ‘feeling my way back into life’. 🙂 I still wish I could have done without it but I guess I would have never been introduced to these new insights so clearly if I had not. Not managing being grateful yet though. It still sucks. In curious way. 🙂
Happy that I quit. I hope you are too. 🙂
I thought this alternative view to mental health is worth sharing. I found some interesting views in here, food for thought and links to people whose work can possibly explain some of the things I have been dealing with. Hope you enjoy.
I am happy that I quit. The reasons I drank are still popping up and asking for attention, but I guess that comes with the territory of being sober; the need to deal. It has been difficult but Bach-remedies, looking for a psychiatrist in my living area has helped me to come, well, at least above zero. What has changed is that I found hope. 🙂 I am not lost, I have issues to solve. That is a big difference. 🙂 While on that path, somebody (Jonathan Davis) was so nice to put this on the interwebs.
Jonathan Davis, Uplift
In November 2014 the peak psychology body in the UK, the British Psychological Association, released their new flagship report Understanding Psychosis and Schizophrenia. It was a watershed moment in the mainstream treatment of mental illness, containing statements such as this:
Hearing voices or feeling paranoid are common experiences which can often be a reaction to trauma, abuse or deprivation. Calling them symptoms of mental illness, psychosis or schizophrenia is only one way of thinking about them, with advantages and disadvantages. ~The British Psychological Association: Understanding Psychosis and Schizophrenia
With mental health problems reaching epidemic proportions in the UK and throughout the western world, this document reads as no less than an admission that the current model of mental health treatment has failed; and a cry for help to anyone with an approach that may be useful. There are indeed a great many cultures who have had, and still carry, a deeper understanding of mental illness. While these perspectives don’t fit within the boundaries of rationalist reductionism, this has little relevance to their efficacy.
From American Indian shamanism* to esoteric judaism, this concept has dominated for millennia. As it has now become clear, western civilisation is unique in history in it’s failure to recognise each human being as a subtle energy system in constant relationship to a vast sea of energies in the surrounding cosmos.
– Dr Edward Mann, Sociologist
Broadly speaking any form of awareness around mental health that includes spiritual, mystic and/or mythic considerations could be included in a shamanic view of mental health. This ranges from ancient indigenous shamanic practices to yogic methods involving kundalini awakening, through to Jungian and transpersonal psychology (which draw heavily from ancient cultures). Jung, for example, characterised schizophrenia and psychosis as a natural healing process.
When conscious life is characterised by one-sidedness and false attitudes, primordial healing images are activated – one might say instinctively – and come to light in the dreams of individuals and the visions of artists… Schizophrenia is a condition in which the dream takes the place of reality. – Carl Jung
Another foundation stone of this perspective is the phrase made famous by Joseph Campbell: ‘The schizophrenic is drowning in the same waters in which the mystic swims with delight’ (an idea borrowed from Jungian psychiatrist RD Laing). There has been a long history throughout human culture of people having mystical experiences, and then becoming ‘weller than well’ as Dr John Weir Perry put it. The key here is that in these instances the person completed a process that western medicine would have labelled as sickness and then medicated. They instead passed through it and went on to lead lives without relapse into ‘psychosis’, instead living a more fulfilled existence than if they had never gone though their temporary break with consensus reality. Throughout history there have been examples of people who have gone on to use their visionary insights, newly found drive and focus to create great social reform for the benefit of all.
Proponents of transpersonal psychotherapy, like one of its founders Prof. Stanislav Grof suggest that ‘spiritual emergence’ experiences are often misdiagnosed as psychosis and medicated unnecessarily. Grof sites 11 different types of spiritual emergencies, including the classic initiatory experience of the shaman, unitive experiences of oceanic oneness, kundalini awakening, the crisis of psychic opening, and the messianic experience common within what John Weir Perry called the ‘renewal process’.
Interpreted from this point of view, a schizophrenic breakdown is an inward and backward journey to recover something missed or lost, and to restore, thereby, a vital balance. So let the voyager go. He has tipped over and is sinking, perhaps drowning; yet, as in the old legend of Gilgamesh and his long, deep dive to the bottom of the cosmic sea to pluck the watercress of immortality, there is the one green value of his life down there. Don’t cut him off from it: help him through. – Joseph Campbell, Schizophrenia: The Inward Journey
John Weir Perry, who put these ideas into practice in a medication free facility called Diabasis, suggests these experiences are a dramatic re-ordering of the person’s psyche from a distorted state to an more ordered one. To me this is like cleaning a messy house, sometimes it needs to get messier in order to sort everything out. Perry also said that ‘it is justifiable to regard the term “sickness” as pertaining not to the acute turmoil but to the prepsychotic personality… the renewal process occuring in the acute episode may be considered nature’s way of setting things right.’ This is echoed by Jiddu Krishnamurti‘s statement that ‘it is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.’
Pathology: A fundamental difference between the approach of calling these experiences mental illness, psychosis or schizophrenia and ‘other ways of thinking about them’, is the very act of pathologising them. The labelling of something as a sickness, when working in the realms of the psychospiritual can have a dramatically negative effect on what happens next. Like a person experiencing an overwhelming psychedelic experience, a person in this kind of state is highly influenced by their surroundings including what they are told, for good or for ill. A suggestion that the experience is a sickness can become a self fulfilling prophecy.
Having been encouraged to see the voice, not as an experience, but as a symptom – my fear and resistance towards it intensified. Now essentially this represented taking an aggressive stance towards my own mind – a kind of psychic civil war, and in turn this caused the number of voices to increase and grow progressively hostile and menacing. – Eleanor Longden
Symptom Suppression: The next big challenge is symptom suppression. Critics of the current model of care (who now seem to include the British Psychological Association) argue that psychiatric medication merely suppresses symptoms.
Many people find that ‘antipsychotic’ medication helps to make the experiences less frequent, intense or distressing. However, there is no evidence that it corrects an underlying biological abnormality. Recent evidence also suggests that it carries significant risks, particularly if taken long term. – The British Psychological Association: Understanding Psychosis and Schizophrenia
Those of the shamanic or transpersonal persuasion go further in suggesting that medication tends to ultimately prevent the person from completing a natural experience such as the ‘process of renewal’ John Weir Perry describes. Instead this process keeps trying to complete itself and symptoms keep reappearing, and then drugs suppress it again in an endless cycle. It’s unsurprising that the phrase ‘you have a mental illness, and you will have it for the rest of your life’ is so often heard by people experiencing psychosis.
They [shamanic cultures] have a cultural context. The physiological crisis, although it’s difficult, it’s believed to be… they put it in a positive light. It’s something the person’s going to come out of and be stronger in the end, and have more abilities in the end. The other thing that’s a big advantage is – it’s not stigmatized. – Phil Borges, maker of upcoming film CrazyWise
Trauma: Thankfully, even in the western model there is a strong surge of recognition occurring around the fact that trauma and neglect in childhood (and in adulthood) can lead to serious mental health crisis.
We had a lot of trouble with western mental health workers who came here immediately after the genocide and we had to ask some of them to leave. They came and their practice did not involve being outside in the sun where you begin to feel better. There was no music or drumming to get your blood flowing again. There was no sense that everyone had taken the day off so that the entire community could come together to try to lift you up and bring you back to joy. There was no acknowledgement of the depression as something invasive and external that could actually be cast out again.Instead they would take people one at a time into these dingy little rooms and have them sit around for an hour or so and talk about bad things that had happened to them. We had to ask them to leave. – A Rwandan talking to writer, Andrew Solomon
Dr Joseph Polimeni states that ‘In most traditional societies those persons who were overcome by hallucinations in young adulthood were more often than not destined to become shamans’. If someone presented with symptoms we would call psychosis, the people of their tribe or village would send them for training with someone who had learned a level of mastery over the sensitivity that once overwhelmed them. Phil Borges states that ‘they have a mentor; they have somebody who has been through this process that can take and hold their hand and say listen, I know what this is all about and this is how you manage it’. In cultures around the world, before western civilisation the idea of schizophrenia as a disease was, quite simply, non-existent. The assumption was that a person experiencing the challenges known in modern times as psychosis was in fact experiencing things that were actually real, but only able to perceived by those who were gifted.
They have a community that buys into what they’ve gone through, and not only that, they have an outlet for their talents – and many of these people have specific talents that the normal person doesn’t have. – Phil Borges, maker of upcoming film CrazyWise
To me it is clear that we live in a culture that immediately labels these moments of crisis as sickness, and our culture has almost no level of acceptance for the people that go through it. When face to face with a person experiencing involuntary states of non-ordinary consciousness, most of us – to put it bluntly – just want them away from us. It’s almost as if we fear that ‘crazy’ is contagious and we want it quarantined. It’s unfortunate that this approach may be compounding the problem, however another way forward is re-awakening. When I look at a person in such a crisis, I see a future potential mentor for others. The more we can assist people in passing through their dark night of the soul, the more guides we will have with lived experience to help others come through in the future. In an upcoming article I’ll be writing about how shamanic training can assist people going through ‘spiritual emergency’.
For peer support and further information of this kind you can join The Shamanic View Of Mental Illness on Facebook.
Jonathan Davis is an Australian writer focusing on shamanism and alternate modes of healing.
This article (The Shamanic View of Mental Health) was originally posted at Uplift Connect, and is reposted here with permission.
After my visit to the government doctor I visited my GP. We worked out that I would get help. Up till then I had thought along the same lines as when being addicted to drinking: if I just do this and that, all will be well. This and that would be ‘moderate’ when I was drinking. Currently it would be ‘wake up on time, shower, dress, eat well, excercise, socialize, go to be early’. And then I found it did not work anymore.
Not all was not well. That night I went into a psychotic episode force 5 on a 10 point scale. That was extremely scary. I had to pull everything together not to lose my mind. I realised that my fear of losing my mind put extra pressure on whatever it was that was happening. So with what was left I deliberately looked through my toolbox. I found: breath, relax, drink water, pat the cat and EFT and EMDR. I did not have the energy for EFT but I did move my eyeballs from left to right and back repeatedly. In only seconds I relaxed, yawned and found a little footing. WONDERFUL. It helped me through the next half hour and I fell asleep. Sleeping is better. Next days I keep on moving my eyeballs left and right and I can literally feel the pressure receding. Immediately. Wonderful. 🙂 Thank you Louise and all others who are involved for pointing me at this methode. 🙂
I also found: call somebody. I can not remember why I dismissed that. Possibly because it was night. Most likely because I do not want people to think I have gone over the edge.
I just read my former post again. Sound quite crazy, difficult to read. Things got worse. Some of you might have read the post where I spoke about the abuse issues I encountered in New Zealand. My niece just moved over there. She is 17 years old. She has not even been there a full month I believe and she has been forcefully kissed against her will by a guy at a party. Photo’s were made too and used against her when she replied in a chat that she did not like it. This is the same niece I wanted to have a talk with about safety and well, the rape culture before she went to NZ, her mother ‘forbade’ that. Same mother and father (my brother) who laughed at her and the situation when she reported guys had put a wager on who ‘got her first’. She is lesbian but not out of the closet in NZ.
Not sure how but I sensed something was off, I don’t know, the photos of outings just looked too glamorous but her personality was not filling up the gap between her and the glamour. I started chatting. It took me 2 hours of chatting with her before she finally came clear on what had happened and she still is too ashamed and traumatized to give the details.
She does not want me to inform her parents. I haggled a deal with her that she connects with a teacher at school the moment she feels scared. Also that she will tell the counsellor of the exchange organisation whom she meets this week.
I know this is not about me but at some point I was wondering: how the hell am I to stay sane during this? This theme in my life where I sense and see danger and nobody listens and bad things happen. Even after they happen people laugh and traumatized persons get dissed. It is, well, very unpleasant. Traumatizing in itself. Eyes left, right, left, right, left. Breathe….. yawn. I yawn within 10 times left and right. 🙂 Not sure what that is about. Guess I am tired.
And I am sick and tired of things like these pushing me towards the edge. There must be another way of dealing with this.
I am grateful that I have this 6th sense where I can literally feel around the world that a person I know is in trouble. I am grateful that I have enough knowledge of speaking with traumatized people to be able to hold some space for her. I am absolutely pissed that she has to go through this. I am absolutely pissed that I have to go through this. I am absolutely pissed at this sick sick world.
Ok. Thanks for reading that :-).
So…. I’m looking for therapists. I’m thinking I would like to start with a therapist on vanishing twin syndrome. There are several around by now but many are ‘far’ away. I am scared to travel currently. I guess I could speak with friends and ask them to go with me. Also…. if this is so intense, maybe I should wait till I am a little more stable. But then again… will I get stable if I do not address the main issue.
Maybe the main issue is not having hope left. I was thinking about this. Can’t believe the jokes the Universe plays on me because I IMMEDIATELY got a FB message on ‘Hope in these dark Trump times’. 🙂 It was good. 🙂
Ok. If the main issue is not having any hope left, I have Bach remedies on the subject of Hope in my toolbox. I keep on not wanting to do the work to get me healthy and back because I am SO SICK of falling back in this dark pit. The loneliness. The despair. The pain of seeing how things are run in this world. Again and again walking into people and situations which press my buttons. Not being able to deal with that. The sensitivity which sometimes feels like I am walking around without skin and everybody can look into my soul. Hahaha, and if they don’t they can read this blog ;-). Ghegheghe…. eh…
Ok, I need to step up my game. I have found parts of self-love where I now believe I do matter. In the process of allowing me to live, I also decided that I do not suck – the whole world sucks. This is not a personal thing, it is ‘just’ governments, multinationals like Monsanto and Shell, environmental polluters, rapists etc.) I guess in time this will balance out. Now I ‘just’ (?) do not have the energy anymore and I am scared for relapsing into where I am now. Hmmm…. I am scared to relapse so I stay still down in the pit. Hmmm…. food for thought.
I put the word ‘just’ between quotes because I have an issue with that word. I noticed it is used by me and others to quickly skip past something which is can/must/should/whatever be mentioned. It is a word to help hide stuff. Not sure what I am hiding. My justs are never just. Which is a very funny sentence. A scary one. I’m leaving it in here. Future will tell what it means. Feels like there is something lying its ass off here and I can’t see it. 😀 OMG, well, future will tell. Ok, future is here, it is in the paragraph already, I started off with it; whenever I want to use ‘just’ I skip feelings, that is unjust about it. My justs are never just.
Ok, cooking time and after that tea time and looking up Bach remedies on hope. 🙂
Thank you for reading. I do realise that I unload on this page and it is not elegant. I can totally understand when this is too much for people. I would wish to carry messages of ‘hope’ and baking cakes but that is not the flavour of the dish called ‘Feeling’. I wish it were different.
I am happy that I quit. I, haha, would be such a mess if I had not. 😀 Yeah, realising that things could be way worse. 🙂 Realising that is good.
Wishing you a nice sober evening/day.
Yesterday a friend and I returned a crate of empty beer bottles which had been on my balcony for over 4 years. As I live on the 4th floor without an elevator I used to drink from cans but… at some point, 4 years ago I was trying to quit and then favo beer came on sale in the bottles. I promised myself that it would not be so bad if I just moderated. Well, I guess you know how that works out… Some 4 years and 2 days later…. I FINALLY got to bringing it back. 🙂 It has 4 euro deposit money so obviously I wanted to cash that.
All this time of not drinking I had been hesitant to bring the bottles back. At first the rattling of bottles in a crate ignited thoughts of drinking. Later it brought back specific memories of what I call our ‘drunken nest’ at home. My dad, brother, friends and I would drink bottled beer on a summer evening at a campfire. I won’t go romanticising this because the truth was that I was already addicted then and the family dysfunctional partially because of the use of alcohol. Looking back now I realise that both my parents had ‘the gene’ even though they never got into it to the max. My father did for a few years when he studied but that finished off his study and he had to move back to his teetotaler parents so that sorted that.
That is the thing with drinking while having a family: it is not only the person who drinks who is affected, it is everybody. When drinking my mother was not available, not for normal conversation, not for connecting, everything was ‘dealt’ with quickly and in an irritated manner. She made clear that we came between her and her drink, or as she would phrase it: “the only moment of the day I have to myself”. A lot of the issues I could have used help with as a teenager, like sexual assault where not spoken off because she was already irritated when I mentioned something simple as school stuff. That is what she taught us; alcohol is more important than you are. And in my twisted and already addicted mind that read: drinking = solving problems.
When my dad drank he would become even more convinced of himself and start orating for 3 hours on end on dark subjects nobody was interested in like doomsday and the end of times. Hmm, orating for 3 hours… how does that sound familiar? If anybody protested, specifically when my mother protested, he would lash out like trying to win the first price for bullying. After that we would all smooth it over with more booze. Flush the tension away.
Mike from the blog ‘dharmaholic‘ spoke about having a family and drinking a few days ago in an interesting post and the shame based family:
For your information, here are some of the things Bradshaw (edit: writer of the book ‘Healing The Shame That Binds You’ about shame, shame based families and addiction) speaks about parent modeling and why shame-based parents have little ability in these matters.
‘Modeling includes how to be a man or a woman; how to relate intimately to another person; how to acknowledge and express emotions; how to fight fairly; how to have physical, emotional, and intellectual boundaries; how to communicate;how to cope and survive life’s unending problems; how to be self-disciplined; and how to love oneself and another. Shame-based parents cannot do any of these”.
That was how my parents failed to be present to my brother and I, to themselves, to eachother and to family and the few friends they had; because of their drinking and their fights with themselves and the fights between them. 😦
The tv-series Patrick Melrose (addicty trying to get clean and trying to deal with his past of abuse) is on in The Netherlands. Obviously my parents were not quite as far away from me as his and the abuse did not come from within the family – but what is very familiar is that undertone of dread. continuous insecurity, fearing I, my integrity, would be attacked, abused. In early childhood I could ‘get over things’ and ‘forget about them’ but the older I grew and the more incidents added on the more I would freeze. And from early puberty onwards I was continuously in a fight/flight/freeze….. and drink mode.
Ok, well, back to the crate on the balcony. I had cleaned the balcony but the crate was staring at me. Earlier I thought keeping it was a good idea to remind me of my stupidity and all the wrongs I had done. I mentioned this to friend who came by and she said: if you do not dare to do it alone, let’s go take it to the store together. We did. 🙂 While walking I spoke about the sound being a trigger. She mentioned that it triggered her to drink cola because it reminded her of bottles of cola. 🙂 That is about focusing on not continuously fighting the old, but replacing our behaviour with new behaviour. In this case that would be drinking cola which I will not – but the sound could be from apple juice or water bottles too. Good changes. 🙂
Also: now I am able to detect what was going on and how this crate calls up memories, guilt and self-hate. In the last 4 years I have also developed some form of self-worth to realise that the hurt coming with the memories and my own judgement is not so much ‘what I deserve’ but more ‘what I learned to do to myself’. I realise guilt is a suitable emotion when applied in moderation in the correct situation. However feeling guilty, always, about everything, about being alive is not a sustainable way of living – so to say. 😉
For me shame is a big issue and finding back my voice, my right to live and right to protect myself, my right to be safe is difficult. So many damaged my physical and emotional integrity to rid themselves of their own feelings of shame through aggressive sexual acts against me. Sexual abuse was the key ingredient of my parents marriage with daily doses of forced sex. That layer of vile acts seeped through the family and poisoned everbodies’ mind, heart, soul and energy system.
So yeah, shame is something to work on for me. And I am guessing at some point in my life it would be nice to be free of reproaching my parents for letting me down. Hell, not reproaching parents for having kids and thinking they can keep them safe while my mother actually knew their marriage would be a destructive one, would be nice. And yes, I know this is twisted thinking but that is a part within which is fucked up badly. I decided that I would never have kids because I would not want to do to anybody what my parents did to me / did not do for me. Everybody kept on and keeps on saying ‘but they were trying their best’. But if unleashing ones own shame on kids is the best… I don’t want to walk down that road. And knowing I was addicted to alcohol: what did I have to offer? Continuation of damaged genes and sick coping mechanisms?
Back to the crate: 3 Years and 10 months sober I do not have to ‘keep up appearances’ and then buckle under the weight of shame and self-hate only to drink again. I am now able to voice my worries to a friend who comforts me and helps me out in a practical way: walk with me to the store, be present to my discomfort. And I am able to accept that just as it is without feeling inferior. I can thank her for that without feeling stupid and not suitable to live.
Those are a lot of changes. 🙂 I am not in AA but seeing how my developments go I can see how they touch upon the 12 steps. 🙂 And indeed, how resentment is an important part of me and it hinders me. But I can not step past the deliberate hurt they caused me, for putting me in harm’s way on purpose, for not listening when I expressed abuse. For sending me back into social situations in which I had been abused. For not believing me when telling them my brother was egging the abusers on. For not believing me my brother pulled a knife at me. For disbelieving everything I said from that point onwards because ‘he would not do such stuff’. Well. He did. And they did. And while I was losing myself and almost soiled myself my mother was looking sincere but not fully. I never understood until I learned about micro-expressions; that explained the glimpses of joy combined with power and sex. Vile. She was smiling at me and experiencing lust when sending me back into the crowd with luring, lusting and grabbing guys willing to go to any length to get some action – there was no protecting me. Because drinking. Because my misery made her feel less alone? I do not know. She had been perverted and now it was my turn. That is what families are about: handing down experiences. Unfortunately that counts for the darker ones too. 😦 Patrick Melrose is very explicit about not wanting to live in this system himself and at the same time behaves exactly the same way his father did. 😦
That’s the thing isn’t it: we all think we will be there for kids, friends, nephews, nieces, family, colleagues, neighbours when they want to express something awful and need help. But the reality is: as long as we do not look at our own pain and darkness, kids, friends, nephews, nieces, family, collegues, neighbours turn into people who are uncomfortable to be around with after they have been hurt. Typically kids who have been abused or bullied will not ‘just cry’ so others can feel sorry for them and comfort them. They have been touched by the shame of the abuser and therefore do not feel the right to cry anymore. They whine, become silent, they can become aggressive or withdraw and stumble over their own feet exactly when others ‘need’ them to be inspirational and show off. And if they can not perform beautifully on Sundays at grandma’s, at school or at football, at least don’t be a whining embarrassment. I cried, I begged, I moaned, I sabotaged and I got dismissed by my parents for whining so they send me back into the lion’s pit. I learned I had no value.
“You are an embarrassment, I am ashamed of you.” actually means: “Your behaviour touches something in me I can not carry, and I dislike you for reminding me of the shame, guilt, self-loathing I have inside.” That is how transfer works. I have shame, you remind me of it, I need to lash out so I can feel better, you feel worse and now you carry my shame.
The other way around: I am thinking, when experiencing discomfort like shame and unworthiness in dealing with somebody, especially kids, it is extremely important to be aware of what is going on and what is carried over, what does not want to be seen, what has no right to exist. Alcohol and other drugs prevents parents, teachers, therapists from doing that because addiction is a shame fueled misunderstanding of life.
In the last months I ended up in a dark depression and allowed myself to go into my underdog mode. Rock bottom will be the solid bottom on which I rebuild my life – I hope ;-). I will sink and sink till I let go of the attachment to destructive patterns. Knowing that I let go. I cut out everybody who did not exactly believe me as I experienced my life and speak about it. No matter how much I moan I expect people to listen and if they don’t they can get out of my life. I had to do that to make space for me to believe me, to take myself seriously, to take back room in myself to experience. Moaning only happens when people do not take their own pain seriously. Moaning is a structure of squeezing a non-existent pimple right next to a giant white head. I was going to not dismiss myself too, upfront. Not going to set boundaries to experiencing the damage which has been done. Not going to slightly change my story or leave stuff out to make people accept it.
My dreams looked and felt like this vid, that person. “The monsters are running wild inside of me. I am faded. So lost. I am faded.”
It was informative. The utter darkness of not wanting to live, not being able to be social, not taking care of me; it was dark. Days filled with planning on how to take my life. How will I make sure the right people take care of the cat and will keep her. How will I make sure they do not suspect that I’m not going on a holiday. Dark. Some days in I realised I was wanting myself out of my body constantly. Do you recognise that?
Also, I had changed the security settings to my blog and I had to type in the name to this blog every time I wanted to read something. I realised that I was not feeling my way back into life. I was pushing myself away from experiencing what was going on but making a ‘kill the ego’ solution to it by wanting to die. As I was laying in my bed anyway I dove into what was.
I can tell you, the running for the darkness and going into suicide thinking is dark. What is behind that within me is dark too but there is a difference. Behind it is destruction. It is natural. It is Thanatos. The Universe has 2 main powers: one is life and the other is death. You can call it light and darkness, yin and yang, whatever. One is expanding, the other is subtracting. The one can not live without the other. The substracting balances the growth. It is that which brings order to the chaos so the growth can follow a sustainable path, not grow wild, not overgrow itself. It sets boundaries to that without boundaries, which is infinite, which is unlimited. I dread endings. Every ending has an atmosphere of my brother dying. I dread boundaries and limits. I ‘chose’ an addiction which I thought helped me to avoid all of that – only to find that the alcohol in the end limited me. Which is correct. That is how Life is.
The darkness is where I do not want to be, I relate this back to the suffering in the womb when my brother died. And funny; I realised that me backing away from this energy to quit building, to make sensible choices instead of wanting it all, makes it impossible for me to fulfill any project or actually achieve something in life because I dread the ending of it. The energy connected to ‘being done’ is for me connected with terror and death. So I back away.
And obviously, in backing away I do not accept life on life’s terms and get unbalanced. 😦 Just Universal laws. The darkness, it is real. It is part of Life. It is natural. I feel I have gotten an extra leg to walk on, like parts in my body have re-integrated with experiencing this darkness within. The suicidal thinking is another darkness, one with ‘opinions’ and ‘wants and needs’, an ego created darkness. The darkness of Life, as I experienced it then is just what it is: destruction. Not personal. Not focussed on the ego. Overwhelming and powerful but true and clear. Quite a relieve actually.
The last month has been about falling apart, looking at all the pieces and the glue which kept them together. Most of the glue is/was not so much a life force but it consists of freeze. Frozen emotions, frozen processes, blocked paths through life. Funny how that what I fear ‘the darkness’ actually ends up building my system itself and preventing the opposite ‘Life’ to happen. Which is… exactly how I think it works. I wanted to find freedom in alcohol while I found enslavement. I wanted financial freedom while I found that depletes my funds :-). I wanted to live without boundaries while I found that means that indeed I reach nothing. I want to explain stuff and bury people in words.
Living Life on life’s terms. 🙂 I have made a big step and while I thought I stepped into the darkness I stepped into freedom. Not kaboom Light, but well, relieve, understanding of the workings of me. Experiencing internal freedom, you know; when you understand stuff and feel your DNA change. 🙂
One of the characteristics of people with a vanishing twin is that they can not finish stuff. Their energy is in the start of a project and then…. pfffff…. they seem to lose interest, fall into pits nobody else would fall in, digress (like now ;-)) find another subject which is way more interesting. I have that. It looks like something which could be just ‘solved’ with improving my moral. But that is not how it works. Like addiction is not a moral disease, my running for the darkness which I connect to endings is not a moral failing either – it is a structural design mistake of my energetic system, or a solution my system made up to deal with the trauma. It would however be very nice to sort of get a grip on my life. 😉 Fix it. Quick! 😀 Getting there.
Some days I can eat well which means 2 home-made meals a day. Sleep well, which by now means going to bed before 02:00 (waaaaay to late for me). Read some, currently the Artemis Fowl series again. I clean the house before visits from friends and the hug-budy which means at least weekly cleaning. He is a cosy, sexy comfort but even after 7 months I do not want to engage into a full sex act. It is actually quite interesting to do all the other things which normally fade out of a relation. When was the last time you spend 4 hours hugging, talking, tickling, massaging and well, some more sexually oriented frolicking?
I am starting to notice differences between us which I am not sure we can or I want to bridge. Also I am not sure if being friends with benefits is a good thing for my dysfunctional heart. Sometimes it only teaches my heart to be more dysfunctional; loving is ok, receiving is impossible. Addict trait; don’t touch me. My heart is shut.
Workwise I am still lost on what and where. The social security people have put me at the bottom of the pile. I guess this is because I start crying every time they ask a question…. sigh, how will I ever be ‘normal’ again? I just don’t know what I want. I want a simple job in a safe environment. But the simple jobs don’t seem to come with safe environments until I find some stability within myself. Having stepped in the darkness behind my own ‘made-up’ darkness is a good thing. However, I do not know how many layers this onion has. And if I need to peel them all to be able to function again at my level of education. Or maybe, maybe, the level at which I am supposed to function is not equal to my emotional intelligence or stress control and maybe I never will. I am going to ask the social security if they can help find out what I want and can do, where my strengths and weaknesses are. Writing short posts is not one of them ;-).
Post 526 in this blog. 🙂 I am happy that I quit. I realise that my happiness is something of an ‘obligatory’ thing. I do not experience a lot of happiness lately, more ‘relieve’ from the darkness. That does not count in my daily practise for ‘being happy that I quit’ but there is no other experience currently. I do resent drinking. My SIL was eating an oven dish with mushrooms in a wine-cheese sauce. I had forgotten about the wine and took a small bite. MG. Tastes like cheese vomit. Brrrr…. People with alcohol breath smell like they swallowed cleaning agent. So no, not in the danger zone but it worries me that I do not ‘repair’ more quickly. And then again: I have gotten a big dose of the darkness and this comes back layer after layer. These last weeks have changed a lot. I hope when the next bout of depression comes a long I am brave enough to really feel into it again. 🙂
Wishing you a good sober night/day.
Just want to remind you the healing trauma summit has started.
More info and a link here.
I am grateful that I quit drinking. Life is pretty dark lately but I found since I’m in a bad place I might as well do difficult things so I do not have to do those when I’m feeling good. So… on day 22 or 23 without chocolate. And on day 4 without refined sugar or man made substitutes of that like aspartame. I exclude soft drinks and cookies and the likes but not stuff where sugar is not the ‘main ingredient’ like a sauce. I am making good choices there though. Obviously I started transferring my chocolate addiction to sweets after I quit chocolate. It was tough, not so much to control the urges, that is ok, If motivation does not come from myself it comes from doing Ramadan-light (no there is no such thing, just a made-up word) and thinking: if the hug-buddy can do full Ramadan (no drink, food, sex during daytime which runs from 4:30 I believe to 21:45 something) – I can do no chocolate at all. 🙂
The tough part is that I had a few, as I call it psychotic experiences; e.g. while biking through town I saw people’s faces and bodies change to skeletons and also the colour of everything changed in flashes. It are ‘flashes’, at most half a second but pretty disturbing. I realised that if I were to lose myself into it I will go nuts. So breathe, relax and drink water. What worried me is that I actually felt so down at some days that I wanted to lose myself in the flashes, take them seriously and freak out. Breathe, relax and drink water. I think to know that this is ‘just’ another way of my system to look for a way out of this reality. I am pretty convinced the reality of what I see in those flashes is a reality, just not the one I think is a healthy place for me to be. I’m thinking realities are like a drawing on a computer: when done well a drawing exists of layers covering each other; first a some basic shapes, then a grid to fill it in, then a colour layer, a structure layer, a shade layer and then some details. As humans we only a one or two layers, cat’s e.g. see the world totally different because they have other eyes. Sometimes, in my case under severe stress, something in the brain wires wrong and it pushes on the wrong layer tab. Very uncomfortable. Breathe, relax and drink water. It is funny how all my life I have had knowledge of that ‘tab’ but I have stayed clear off it like I stay clear of the door to lala-land. Ok. Question: does anybody else have flashes of crazy?
Guess I am coming closer to what is ‘ailing’ me and something inside wants to protect me from meeting that. Fixed it the only way I could by overeating sweets. 😦 But hey, tally ho! Onwards I go. 🙂 Maybe I should be feeding (talking to) my demons by now. Might be more constructive than fighting flashes of psychotic experiences with watermelon and dates.
So substituting big time. Obviously. I can not do the cold turkey no sugar anymore. I can not do anything cold turkey anymore. I can do baby steps 🙂 So I do baby steps: no chocolate, and when the cravings for that have settled and the no chocolate headache is gone (9 days!!!) I continued to wonder about the next step. Next step done. I only eat natural sugars now and you can imagine that I stocked up on fruit and dates. 🙂
Here a recipe for a lovely desert, most likely this is for 2 persons, but I ate it on my own. Still losing weight though. Well, truth be said it feels like a TREMENDOUSLY BIG meal. 🙂 Quantities of eating is the next thing that is on my list. But baby steps, baby steps. One of the baby steps I am doing right now is getting back to eating home cooked meals twice a day. I’ve thrown away all the ‘thou shallst do this and that’ – only 2 home cooked meals and I am noticing they are getting more healthy during this process anyway. Baby steps Well, apart from this one. Although one could argue that it contains fruit and chia seeds.
BIG MEAL PRESENTED AS DESERT
Cut 2 dates into tiny slivers and put into a small bowl, cover with boiling water and what is that word: squash with a spoon until you have some ‘dilution’. Then add 4-5 tablespoons of coconut milk to an equal amount of chia seeds. The original recipe I had at the Vietnamese restaurant had vanilla in the chai but that comes with refined sugar so I left that out. Leave to swell over 5 minutes at least, add water in tiny tiny bits if you feel the seeds could still expand. The seeds must swell up like crazy and coat themselves in a gel like substance.
Heat up a frying pan and add a little coconut oil or butter to lightly cover the surface. Cut 2 bananas in halves and cut those in halves length wise so there is a flat surface to them. Put those in the pan, flat side under and fry (bake?) on low heat, cover with a lid.
In another small frying pan put a teaspoon of coconut oil, heat, add a handful 20-25 brown almonds and toss about cheffy so the almonds are coated. Now put back on a low heat till they ‘pop’ and spread a beautiful aroma. In between cut tiny slivers of fresh ginger to taste and add to the nuts. You can use powdered ginger but realise these powdered herbs always need to be heated for 5 minutes through and through so in this pan without moist they would burn.
This would be the time to check on your banana’s, the flat side should be brown, if not, take the lid off, crank up the heat and keep an eye on it. They go from pale to dark quickly due to high sugar content. Then use a spatula or 2 forks to turn them around bake till you are ok with the colour.
In between cut some peel of an ecological. (!!!) citrus fruit (without the white) in tiny slivers and add to the nuts, stir around a few times and add the 1 cup of cooked and cold rice. Mix and heat up, it is ok for the rice to become a little brownish here and there. Place nicely on a plate and enjoy.
If this is not enough one could tart it up with coating the bananas in coconut flower before baking. Then add some more oil to the pan. Maybe slow-fry pieces of pineapple the same way. Or lightly toast coconut flakes or almond flakes and decorate the fried bananas. Or possibly add ice cream but then again: that mainly contains refined sugar. Possibly tiny slivers of mint might be good. Well, hope you enjoy. 🙂
Currently still unemployed, not looking for a job, receiving sick leave money from the government, based on my ‘profile’ I have been put at the bottom of the list for treatment. Not sure what that means, but it does mean that I am not getting any treatment obviously. Not sure what that means. Also: I am not up to anything anyhow.
I am grateful in a sort of depressed way about quitting alcohol and sugar. I have no ‘will power’ left to put into these next steps to healing so I need to do the way I can: through knowledge and baby steps. The goal is to unaddict, ‘get my body back’ and also to not have the mind fog anymore. To get back on that road of becoming clear which I set off onto when I quit drinking. If not for me, then to minimise the damage I do to others in not being clear and having and addictive personality.
Wishing you a nice sober day.
More free online summits. This on the use and possibilities of the Eneagrams.
I am going to join because I need to look for another way of making money and my enneagram says ‘Perfectionist’ – which is funny in a very much not funny way.
Here is part of the email I got:
What if you had a roadmap — a “soul map” — for understanding who you are and what makes the people around you tick? A time-tested system that integrates your whole being and can be applied to every area of your life?
And what if this map could help you tap into your essential nature, resulting in truly authentic relationships and a deep sense of living on purpose?
This map exists, and it’s the Enneagram… a powerful personality typing system that serves as a profound gateway to your inner wisdom.
It can shed light on behaviors which might be undermining your ability to access wholeness, true intimacy and fulfilment of your life’s dreams.
Studying the Enneagram can be life changing — not only personally, but professionally as well…
That’s why I’m excited to invite you to one of our most popular annual events, The Enneagram Global Summit — a gathering of today’s top Enneagram experts who’ll bring light to this powerful psychological and spiritual tool for accessing more self-awareness and compassion for yourself and those around you.
Free Online Event
Enneagram Global Summit
June 11–15, 2018
We’re excited to bring you more than 45 of the world’s top experts — including Claudio Naranjo, Russ Hudson, Helen Palmer, Cheryl Richardson, Dan Siegel, Katie Hendricks, Robert Holden, A.H. Almaas (Hameed Ali), Jessica Dibb, Dr. David Daniels (posthumously), and others — sharing the latest insights and applications to integrate into your own personal growth journey and to take your Enneagram knowledge deeper.
During The Enneagram Global Summit, you’ll discover key insights and practices to break free from unhealthy patterns, reconnect with your true Self and realize your highest potential.
I hope you’ll join us for this special online gathering!
If you’re new to this ancient system, you’ll be guided to the best tests and practices for determining your individual type — including ways to differentiate between “look-alike” types.
You’ll start working with the core patterns of your type and begin to connect with the parts of yourself that allow you to respond to life spontaneously and creatively.
If you’re already well-versed in the Enneagram, you’ll take your work even deeper — empowering you to make YOUR contributions to the world!
Plus, you’ll fine-tune your understanding of how to use the less balanced aspects of each type as catalysts for personal and spiritual growth — and how to use the higher aspects of each type to raise your level of consciousness.
If you want a greater connection with your unique gifts, as well as more self-acceptance, self-love and compassion for others, join the amazing panel of presenters for this life-changing event.
I am happy that I quit. Having difficulty with not eating chocolate for the ‘Ramadan-light’ (no, that is not an official term :-)) I do pointed out that my transfer addictions are big so I started reading ‘The addictive personality’ by Craig Nakken again. I read that 2 times now and this is the 3rd. Still, every sentence is quote worthy. And again I experience it as comforting that this whole disease or what you want to call it is described in a book(let) even before I reached the legal drinking age. If you don’t have a copy, look it up on the net, plenty of second-hand versions around too.
What I find stressful and depressing but at times invigorating is that there are so many layers to peel off, so many layers of denial. And again and again I notice that it is COMPASSION which actually enables me to open my eyes to the denial. The hugbudy appreciating the abundance of my figure enabled me to actually look at it instead of scan it (while irritated).
And about compassion; I finished the ‘There is nothing wrong with you and on days I could stick to what it says but wow, it is difficult to change this dismissive behaviour of mine around. It does not make sense to re-read now so I continued in the Nakken book in order to see how he finds addiction leads to self-hate and lack of compassion. There is so much going on in the world which weighs me down deeply. But 2 things happening these days, thanks to Cristal Clear: I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. And also: if I want to be able to work on worldpeace, I need to make peace with me and my past first. Isn’t it funny how the 12 steps pass by in my life and writing and they all seem to be needed in order to become clear, transparent.
A quote from Nakken: ‘Addicts keep delaying life issues as a way of nurturing themselves.’ How is that for a spot on description of procrastinating? By the way: the book includes a very clear explanation of how perfectionism builds up in a life and why it is so strongly linked to addiction.
Wishing you a nice sober evening/day. Hope the new week brings good sober stuff into your life.
because some of us need a few more lines to keep everything straight
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