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Here's to reading and posting awfully depressing things about our personality and trauma!!


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It's been wonderful to be able to post here (well, the old site to begin with) and get comments. It's helped me a lot.

Anybody interested in the topic of cold, unfeeling bitches and how they mess up our lives? Understand that I HAVE A COMPONENT OF MY PERSONALITY who is like that. I'm still trying to understand her well. Because ultimately, I think that understanding and accepting the (unacceptable) cold, unfeeling bitches is important to overcoming their legacy and going forward into the future with something better.

But bitching about them(us) might be a way to start -- and maybe get some more information about how they (we) operate!

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Hmm, "cold and unfeeling", um, sires (what's the male counterpart to "bitch"?) also exist. I'm not sure that making it gender-specific adds much to the topic, and it leaves out the other half of the world.

But definitely, such people produce quite a bit of suffering around them, especially when they're the parents. And I also agree that when you find any component of yourself that you would like to change, the first step is accepting both that component and the reason that it formed. Most likely, it was trying to protect us from something, and it's not likely to go away easily unless it's assured that we're still protected.

{Glad you made it, DD. And not just to the new forum. Everyone's a survivor of something.}

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Thanks, Malign, for saying you’re glad I survived. I’m not feeling very glad today that I survived – although I was feeling happy a few days ago. It may be that I’m getting an infection. There are different ways of being sick.

So, OK – how to deal with cold and unfeeling people, or people who have cold and unfeeling moods and it’s very confusing living with them?

Which describes all the women in my family – my mother, her mother, my aunts, sister, daughter, and of course me. I hate them/us all. And right now my demented mother probably doesn’t but all the rest probably hate me.

My daughter and I aren’t speaking – her choice. My aunt and sister and I communicate by email about my dying mother. I don’t expect to have any reason to see either one of them after Mother dies. Now that I can feel the feelings of their disrespect, that’s how I will protect myself. Them, too, for that matter. I don’t respect them, either, and these days it shows sometimes.

Mother has Alzheimer’s disease and has been in decline for 5-6 years. OK, yeah, that does take a toll on me, too. My husband died 13 years ago, father 10 years ago, Mother is in a wheelchair and when she tries to speak the sounds aren’t even words a lot of time. At least she seems either not to know or at least isn’t too frustrated about it.

Well, I care about her and that isn’t really so wonderful either. It hurts.

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DD, I'm sorry for your pain and frustration. :( I hope it helps to express your feelings. I hear that you care about your mom and that seeing her decline hurts you. :( Maybe there can also be a place to feel caring in a joyful way, though I understand that may be very difficult right now with your mother.

So' date=' OK – how to deal with cold and unfeeling people, or people who have cold and unfeeling moods and it’s very confusing living with them?[/quote']

The best way I have found to handle difficulties in the other person's behaviors is by trying to understand what the other person might be experiencing. Possibly "cold and unfeeling" is a means of self-protection? Often it's easier to be angry than to risk being vulnerable and then possibly hurt. I don't know if that fits or not.

It does seem to me that you are very hard on yourself at times, DD, but maybe what I'm hearing is your frustration in trying to understand and balance it all? I know that can be hard.(I have a demanding child part that wants to throw tantrums when she doesn't get what she wants.) What I try to do now is create a space to observe my own behaviors, feelings, and responses without becoming absorbed in them. Challenging, but it can help to slow things down and become more self-aware.

Perhaps you can also recognize and celebrate the growth you've experienced.

I hope that today is brighter. Take gentle care.

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Hi, DD!

I'm sorry to hear you are suffering so.., the best what i can say for now is - hang in there!

umm.. i see we have actually something incommon.. I'm afraid your post is telling alot about me too, the way i feel and the way i am and how it is bothering me.. :

"cold, unfeeling bitches;

But bitching about them(us) might be a way to start -- and maybe get some more information about how they (we) operate!"

It's kind of hard to say that about myself that there is a big bitchy side of me, because it's not WHO I AM, but it's part of me i'm fighting against. And that is who i was and became almost totally once, still is in me.

Why it's like that.. Maybe because ppl near me are being the same and bad against me, so it's making me mad. And also that the same ppl have no idea what i've been through while they never suffered like that. It's nice, makes me happy to know that there are ppl who are doing better mentaly etc. But i can't believe how rude they can be, it's never good enough for them, they will always want more and are being mean against those ppl who as they feel has better luck in life ( me in this case). So it makes me want to show them somehow how it is too feel down, by bringing them down as deep as possible. But am i doing that? NO. I am not doing that despite these strong bitchy feelings.

I have revealed 3 possible states you can be in if you're suffering and dealing with this kind of part of your personality.

1. Simple, give up and become this person totally, say everything you feel, don't care about others, live for yourself and let the bitch be.

2.Choose to keep quiet because you know it's the best thing to do, let others to think what they think about you, you'll be little angry, restless, depressed, others might feel that you're being in bad mood, being pessimistic etc

3.Controle yourself and suffer. Often simply beeing in bad mood, distracting from others and not talking can be translated in to rudeness. It might seem that you don't care about no one and are treating everybody like a sh*t. So "as simple as it is" try to hold yourself in hands, don't do or say anything stupit, do not ansver to the stupit act that comes from others. Even if you feel too much irritated, don't react to that (there is no way others will talk about you and figure out how horrible person you are). React to possitive things you see, smile, be polite (just do the job). Yes, you will be irritated about the unfairness, evilness. You will suffer of holding yourself in hands as much as of feeling down after forbiding yourself to say anything against anyone, letting them say what they want and maybe even bringing you down.

This is what i do, probably because i can't drop the good values of moral, probably because i don;t want to be seen as someone i;m not.. It's hard but i guess i stiil have strong hope that someday soon i can deal better with problems like that, i hope that these feelings will simply dissapear or became meaningless to me just like that

In my case i put it all on bpolar dissorders - that i simply can't controle my feelings and i don't know where they come from, sometimes i'm about to expload, sometimes i can't gain no feelings at all. Taking stabilizators now. Honest, i hope that's the kea lol

Otherwise it's not good at all.

What do you think DD? Where your feelings are coming from, can you controle them? I see you can but i know how hard it is. IF there is or has been an obvious reason, you can work with this problem, but very intensive, in strong therapy. You will need to overlive it and you shouldn't break the process. Everything will be just fine

Best of luck!

medlem

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DD,

Most of the people I know here are survivors, of one thing or another. I'm glad we've all made it this far.

I lost my mother to complications from cancer, but dementia had taken her some time before, luckily not too long. But that and other events in my life has ended up bringing the rest of my family closer instead of pulling it apart. Perhaps, as you say, the issue lies in a loss of respect for each other, and as Beth pointed out, that might be something that can be restored by trying to find out more about how they experience the world.

It's certainly your choice whether or not to try. Some people aren't worth it.

But I'm not sure we're really talking about their worth. I think you've found a behavior of yours that bothers you in others. You're aware that the only person you can change is yourself, and the question now is how.

Can you be warm towards people, even if they're being cold to you? Is there a vulnerability, or a loss that you would suffer, if you took the first step? I don't know the answers; they're probably different for everybody. But maybe it's a place to start?

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Thanks, medlem and malign.

In essence I used medlem’s option 2 for most of my life – only I denied or dissociated from the bitch so I didn’t feel so down and depressed. I didn’t FEEL others demeaning behaviors toward me but the problem then was that there was a lot about social relationships that I just could not understand.

Getting the bitch out of hiding has been an important therapeutic goal for the last 2 years.

I am now much more aware of the unfairness and evilness in the world than I was when I was concentrating on stamping out all the evilness in me. Yes, some evil is in me, but when I have accepted the bitch’s feelings and impulses – I do suffer from holding myself in hand. But throwing my own bitch away didn’t make other people’s bitches go away. I can be as rational as everything but if somebody else is a bitch then the communication is not going to go well, nothing's going to get done. So sometimes, with regard to some family matters right now, I can’t avoid all bitches all the time. I have said things like "What are you trying to tell me?" and "I am disappointed that you didn't get back to me about this."

In my family and here in the Southern USA, the cold unfeelingness is more about what is ignored or minimized than anything that is said outright. Also what people say about others -- with a pretense of concern. “Steel magnolias” = “soft and white on the outside, hard and cold on the inside”. You could even say “warm and soft” on the outside. But the steel inside – really, sucks and is so totally denied.

Thank goodness for some healthy relationships in my support group and with my therapist. I care about the people in my family but I can't go back and try to relate to them. At least not now.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Okay, that's a reasonable answer to the least important question in the thread (yeah, I know: I asked it.) :-P

What do you think about the important part, Jai? About dealing with our own, and others', "dark sides"?

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Don't deny who you really are. Embrace the darkness.

A few thoughts come to my mind, Jai. I do think that self-acceptance is very important, but there is also balance involved. How do you feel about these parts of you?

Also, there is a famous quote about the way we can sometimes fear our own light rather than our darkness. It may be easier to fall into embracing the darkness than it would be to look into the light. Could any of that fit for you?

Your profile image/avatar...what are you expressing with this? What does it mean to you?

DD, I hope you are well. How do you feel about your light? Are you able to embrace that part of yourself too?

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For me, light is the light of "truth" or reality. So I guess something that is "light" about me is my persistence in pursuing that. I have tried to shine light into the darkness of myself – of “evil” in myself, of unwanted emotions, of denied family social realities. Shining the light on those things has helped me to integrate them into my view of myself and reality. Others may not be interested in what I find but it works for me. Having shone the light and accepted (more or less) my own evil, it is then easier to accept in others. I understand that the others might not be interested in doing the same thing, though.

Nevertheless, the big female family freeze may be breaking up. I am different. We are all different. The family norm that we all be agreeable, all the time, is not realistic. Honest assertiveness has an element of “warmth” – life, realism, individuality.

All the women, like an enmeshed glacier with everybody’s feelings frozen together. A “nice”, frozen, polite smile? All the time. Yes, Hell can freeze over sometimes and it’s still just Hell.

Maybe nobody really wants to be frozen together but nobody knows how to do any differently? I’m committed to doing things differently for me. Not because I want to break away from the family but it is just too impossibly painful to keep on the way things were.

My sister and I are doing OK for the moment. Maybe others will accept me when it is clear that I accept myself. But I can't live my life waiting for that to happen or frozen in terror that it won't.

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I have revealed 3 possible states you can be in if you're suffering and dealing with this kind of part of your personality.

1. Simple, give up and become this person totally, say everything you feel, don't care about others, live for yourself and let the bitch be.

2.Choose to keep quiet because you know it's the best thing to do, let others to think what they think about you, you'll be little angry, restless, depressed, others might feel that you're being in bad mood, being pessimistic etc

3.Controle yourself and suffer. Often simply beeing in bad mood, distracting from others and not talking can be translated in to rudeness. It might seem that you don't care about no one and are treating everybody like a sh*t. So "as simple as it is" try to hold yourself in hands, don't do or say anything stupit, do not ansver to the stupit act that comes from others. Even if you feel too much irritated, don't react to that (there is no way others will talk about you and figure out how horrible person you are). React to possitive things you see, smile, be polite (just do the job). Yes, you will be irritated about the unfairness, evilness. You will suffer of holding yourself in hands as much as of feeling down after forbiding yourself to say anything against anyone, letting them say what they want and maybe even bringing you down.

medlem I would like to offer another possibly more amicable solution.

4. Do some combination of the other three! Control yourself as best as you can. Keep quiet when you realize you are losing control. Then give up and walk away when all else fails.

No suffering involved :)

I know, easier said than done but you never know until you try.

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I stopped working about 15 years ago as my late husband’s terminal cancer was progressing. I couldn’t get my psyche together enough to go back to work.

My mother has been in decline and living in assisted-living for about 6 years. When she was losing her competence and her short-term memory, she got very anxious and I went up to see her maybe every two or three weeks. I took her on outings and just generally tried to make her feel better and make it clear (to her and to the staff) that someone cared about her. My sister is still working and had other demands on her time but she sees her about once a week now, I think.

Now that Mother has advanced dementia she still knows who I am but she lacks the ability to carry on much of a conversation. The last year I’ve been going up on special occasions or once every couple of months or so.

She participated in the family “freeze” about feelings but she also had/has a component of her personality which loves nature and exploring. For instance, she went hiking with a group of women friends every week from about age 40 – 75. I like science, too, though a little more abstract than Mother, but we still had a pretty good relationship based on that kind of shared understanding until the dementia set in. Nevertheless, it’s something to be thankful for, I guess. I will miss that and, really, miss that already.

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Thanks, Jai. It’s really interesting how you take a point of view opposite to mine without knowing many facts except that I am angry and the vengefulness shows in the comments I have posted here.

Vengefulness and rage in oneself are difficult emotions to deal with, but cutting them off and caring only about the other’s point of view doesn’t work either. That’s the “nice” way I learned growing up, trying always to understand the other’s perspective. I can do that. Understanding my own perspective, especially when it includes unpleasant, difficult emotions, is the challenge I have now.

I appreciate your response – clearly when I express my rage, yours is a response that I engender in some people. And if I engender that kind of response, then people are not likely to be interested in where I am coming from.

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Jai, can you tell me some more, then, about your life and how you came to the opposing position?

I’ve been writing in this forum about things in my life that I struggle with. I’ve not written about the things I’ve done to make sure that my mother is being well cared for. I can do that, if you like. But I don’t understand why you want to know. Or why you assume that I haven’t -- except that I haven’t written about it. Well, maybe it's kind of hard to get an idea of what I'm really about, if all I write about is the negative?

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My mom chose to go to assisted living herself. We talked about her coming to live with me but she preferred to stay in the city where she had been born and lived her whole life. My mother pays for the care herself – my aunt is in charge of her finances and writes the check.

You just don’t have the facts about my situation and my life. That's the fact, no matter how much you write from a position of assumed superiority. You do have the facts about your own life. What is it, as you said, from your own life that leads you to a position opposing me? Did you care for you own mom? Did you and she want you to do that?

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My 75 year old father has shown signs of mental and physical decline over the past few years. He's making bad choices and I'm not certain he knows what is best for himself right now...and yet he still strongly wishes to make his own choices. It's the beginning of a potentially difficult road for me and my family with our aging parent. I've already experienced a lot of heartache trying to decide what is best. How to respect his wants, and yet protect him at the same time. Very challenging. It is not to the point of having to spoon feed him or change diapers, but there have been a few issues along those lines that have recently happened. I'm sure it doesn't get easier from here.

How to best care for an aging parent is a struggle that it seems both of you have had to deal with in your lives. I imagine that you and your families have done what you feel is best for your parent and for your family. I can't imagine that any of the choices were and are easy to make. I know for me sometimes if I have strong personal feelings about things it becomes easier to feel upset. Is it possible there are things that the two of you can share about your experiences with this?

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At this point, IJ, I feel personally and irrationally attacked by Jai and I don’t feel safe sharing anything else much with her. I’m certainly willing to continue to participate in this forum, if other folks want, and willing to have her post jabs at me. Also willing to try to resolve some differences if she wants.

I started this thread because of struggles I was having with the prevailing family dynamic in my family. Not struggles I was having in caring for my mother. Whether Jai acknowledges it or not, those struggles are largely over. Mother is content. I don’t see a need to post a report of what I have done for Jai’s approval.

It’s very hard for me to distinguish feelings of vindictiveness from legitimate feelings of assertiveness. Well, I was able to be assertive for Mother but that’s part of what I don’t need to write about here. Both vindictiveness and assertiveness were no-no’s growing up, as they were for all the females in the family. My therapist agreed that addressing recent conflicts with my aunt and my sister were legitimately assertive. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t have rageful, vengeful, and vindictive feelings about things. For myself, I have learned that I have to allow myself to have them and try to filter them out, rather than shutting the whole system down, in order to let the assertiveness be.

I wonder if that’s something that Jai and I may have in common, too?

I’m also wondering if shutting down the whole assertiveness system, in order to shut down vindictiveness, isn’t a large part of what made the females in my family cold and unfeeling?

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I'm sorry you have felt attacked, DD. :( We want the forum to be a safe place for its members, and we value all members of the community.

It’s very hard for me to distinguish feelings of vindictiveness from legitimate feelings of assertiveness.

You mentioned once that you had an interest in feedback about your interactions. From what I have seen here in the community' date=' I personally believe you assert yourself very well. I have had some difficulty with asserting myself during times of anger. In the past, I have generally shied away from the conflict or I have lashed out inappropriately. I'm still working on a better balance with that. I do think it's possible to have angry feelings and to also assert yourself calmly and respectfully. This can be quite challenging.

I’m also wondering if shutting down the whole assertiveness system, in order to shut down vindictiveness, isn’t a large part of what made the females in my family cold and unfeeling?

That's an interesting insight. It sounds like it could be a struggle with angry parts and trying to balance this. Not easy for me either. Everyone has their own methods of coping and it's true that withdrawing could be one of them. I would also think that if angry feelings were not allowed a voice, they might build up over time and become resentful and possibly vindictive.

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