Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Not Allowed to Be A Girl!

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This is part of my abuse that may weird some of you out. Be prepared, this is where the weirdness of my freakish upbringing really shows itself. I think it was insidious and evil. It really disturbs me now when I think about it. Even beyond sexual abuse, narcissists can use sexuality itself to destroy a soul.

Remember how I was an art teacher and majored in art education for my bachelor's degree? Well both my parents were against this. Later I would have my regrets worrying they were right, but if I had a healthy body, I would have gotten a decent middle school art teaching job. I did work in the field as an art teacher under a grant at a juvenile home which included art therapy for three and half years. Well one of the conversation was very odd we had, my father sneered at me, "That's a woman's job!" when I said I wanted to be an art teacher.

Now isn't that weird since I am and was a WOMAN?

But that is what I faced among my family. In many ways I was not treated as a girl growing up. It was really sickening. I am NO FAN OF FEMINISM, and maybe you all will see why.

 My father and mother in many ways seemed to be misogynists of the highest order. Obviously you all know I am no bra burning feminist, but there can be people out there who hate women.  Feminism and hatred of women can go together. I know some feminist readers may read this and not be happy at me saying this but there are the powers that be who have used negative aspects of feminism to enslave. My father I believe married the most masculine woman he could marry who was still "straight". He used to scoff at female tears as all manipulative feminine wiles. I realized my father hated women and hated emotions and femininity. This is why he picked the woman with no emotions and the hardness of the most stoic warrior on the planet off the shelf. He wanted to sleep with girls but hated girls.  My brother's womanizing ways was his own new thing but disrespect of women definitely is something he inherited from my father.

My mother was very hard like the hardest man, she did not cry, outside of cooking she explored no womanly arts. She wore only pants and very masculine clothing. Even the Mini-Me will only wear a dress for a rare 'special occasion' but otherwise dresses in Khakis and polo shirts like a man. Gentleness among the screaming and yelling was out the door. The worse aspects of feminism were shoved down my throat. I was told my career would empower me and that I was too fat and ugly to "marry well".

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My mother's best friend who dated back to high school was a feminist nun who participated politically in having women become priests and other feminist liberal agendas. Both her and his nun and other relatives when younger worked at this boy's military school run by priests and nuns which was notorious for the things you can guess many of those places are. Seeing the place listed on a SNAP forum creeped me out.

I learned about her extreme feminist proclivities looking her up as an adult but of course as a child only knew she wore more regular clothes then the nuns teaching me. She was the first canon lawyer in the Catholic church, she quit the nunnery and got a high level job in state education. Of course those connections were not used to help me get a teaching job. Growing up, she was one of those liberal nuns, who wore the plain habit. She would visit my family household all the time when I was in elementary school and she was my confirmation sponsor. A semi-rotund woman even in her youth, my parents emulated her, after all she worked with high level Bishops and Cardinals and was "connected". She didn't like a lot of my youthful religious questions or then burgeoning atheism but I could talk to her and thought she was at least a bit nicer then my mother. She was held up as a role model to me growing up. I was told to study hard, and basically become her, and that I should never marry or have children but focus on a career and perhaps even join the convent one day.

We would move away but my mother would remain in contact with Sister Feminist to this very day. She stopped having anything to do with me when she realized I was independent minded when it came to religion. I left the Catholic church when I was 17. She would not like the beliefs I have about Catholicism today or that I am a born again Christian today.

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As I wrote before both parents were very angry when I left the Catholic church, some of my family estrangement comes from that. However even after I left the Catholic church, my father would tell me I needed to be just like Sister Feminist. Both parents wanted me to be her. They were angry when I did not match her career mindedness or drive. They knew I questioned the system too and was not ready to become a papal bootlicker and were not happy. One day when I was home from college, I and my father got in a fight while we were downstairs cleaning the basement. He told me "Why am I helping you pay for college, when you could just join the convent and get your education for free like Sister Feminist?". I told him, that I had read enough memoirs on convents including Maria Monk, and not every nun gets a JD degree, they pick some to clean the priest's toilet instead and this is not via the individuals choice. He wouldn't listen but then complained, "Let the convent take care of you, you'll never get a job otherwise!" I pointed out then how I had left the Catholic church formally joining another church at the time. He said to me, "They don't need to know!"

I wondered if Sister Feminist may have been a lesbian but then she left the convent and was married twice, the second time after being widowed. She left the convent after 23 years in and told my mother she was tired of working as a lawyer nearly for free. I think about all this influence on my psyche at the time. I was paired up with Sister Feminist constantly who would visit and take me on trips to Catholic basilicas in the large city my family lived in. I remember one day she bought me this pink rosary.  When we moved away my contact with her became far less but the messages remained the same.

                                              [picture source]

My parents constantly told me I was too "ugly" and that I never would be married and no man would have me. That I was "too weird". Oddly at the same time they made extreme strict rules to guarantee these outcomes. I was not allowed to date like other girls or even talk to boys. Get too friendly or flirt with a boy and my mother would call me a whore. When one of my 13 year old friend's got pregnant she threatened to throw me out of the house. I would be a virgin into my twenties, but my mother treated me like I was out ready to prostitute in the streets. One odd thing I remember it is like my family wanted me to be a spinster by age 10.  By age 24 sans boyfriend, I met my husband at the age of 25, my family screamed at me for being an "old maid". The double messages hurt me badly.

I was not only dressed like a boy, I had to do a boys work. While my sister would be in the house helping my mother cook and prepare meals and dust, I was outside digging holes with my brother and father while wearing the t-shirts and dungarees.  I was kind of the extra worker, not good enough to be shown really how to fix the car which my brother was shown with both of them under the hood, but sent to fetch things and told to shut up. So it was like I wasn't treated like a girl but not a full boy either. I was expected to be as strong as a man, and back then before my health broke I did have some strength. This including carrying heavy boxes, heavy car parts, and moving couches.

My 6 figure earning parents didn't hire a moving company when they moved, they made me and brother move everything. When my parents moved 2 miles to a smaller house-well before my mother added on to it from our 6 bedroom country club house, they had some messed up house closing, where they talked a neighbor into storing our items in a large garage before the other house opened up. This means my brother and I had to move hundreds of boxes and items not once but TWICE. My sister didn't have to move anything.

I have noticed since joining Facebook, that all my young high school mates were married in their late teens and early 20s. Many are grandmothers today. I realized they were allowed to date and see boys and allowed to be girls and women wearing pretty dresses. Feminism was not used as a hammer on their heads and they weren't told to emulate a feminist nun as their role model because they were a bit on the heavy side. Even the fat girls got married and had children. I now realize how vast the divide was between how I was treated and my classmates.

What does it mean that I had to cry to get to wear a dress and never was allowed to wear a dress in high school? Oddly I had the favor of wearing my hair long while in elementary school and was saved enforced masculinity via Catholic school jumpers but when I hit junior high and we had moved out of the Catholic system, it's like my mother wanted to dress me like a little fat lumberjack.

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 I still remember my first day in public school, wearing a flannel shirt and Wrangler jeans, every class I walked into, the kids laughed and laughed some more. In high school, I got called "dyke" by some classmates as my mother forced me into too tight Lee Jeans and tailored shirts with tabs on the 3/4ths sleeves that I absolutely loathed. I was dressed like I was a would be transgendered person going from female to male but not by choice.  Jeans were the worse thing I could be wearing on a pear shaped fat body. I would cry for years for feminine clothes even some flat jelly shoes and be denied. Ugly sneakers adorned my feet just like boys wore too. I believe many narcissistic mothers wish to desexualize their daughters and dress them ugly so they are not competition. My mother did it to control my social status and keep it low. I also had severe neglect with clothing when my outfits became few in number. There were more then a few times when I only had two pairs of jeans to wear that fit or one or two sweaters.

I avoid jeans like the plague and the day I turned 21 and was out of the house threw them all in the trash and quit wearing them. When I was around 22-23 and buying all my own clothes I started wearing dresses as much as possible. I got stuck with a few cotton knit pants for work but in the mid90s I gave up wearing pants entirely on my extreme lipedemic body. I also started wearing jewelry and bows in my hair. My mother by the 1990s when I was wearing bows in my hair and flowered dresses would be disgusted. She would scream at me to wear pants and once even machined sewed me some pants, which I never wore or asked for. She was angry that I was not dressing like her. She was angry at me for being a failed feminist.

For some reason I look back and think "Why wouldn't she buy me any dresses even to hide my bad figure flaws?", Why couldn't I get flats or pretty jewelry like the other girls? Why did she buy me so many boy clothes?" Ugly fashions in Lane Bryant and other plus sized stores didn't help either. Those stores with their horrible clothing and never any casual dresses were the bane of my existence too.  I was forced to dress like a boy. Is there any wonder that I as a fully straight girl in high school got made fun of for supposedly being a lesbian?

                                             [picture source]

My mother would only buy me dresses to go to special family weddings. I remember owning 4 dresses from age 1-18 and that's it. I was not allowed to wear them on non-special occasion days, so some dresses I only remember wearing once or twice. My mother forced me to wear ugly nylons with the dresses and bought me dresses that were too short.  When I outgrew one red prairie skirt I had talked my mother into buying, this made me cry. It was hidden in my closet since my mother threatened to take it away since I wore it so much. Makeup-nylons, shaving, nail-polish, pretty bows, flowers were not part of my existence. I wasn't allowed to have these things. As an Aspie I preferred some comfort to painful fashion but this put me way behind the fashion and popularity 8 ball. I never went to any proms or formals. That was for "other girls".Ever notice how masculine Meg is dressed on Family Guy?

For some reason I was not allowed to be feminine. I don't know why. Even with the PCOS and being I was somewhat masculinized by PCOS, I did have high testosterone and a higher degree of body hair then other girls, that didn't explain the depths of their depravities. This made the issue even more complicated. They treated me like I was a boy and by the way things got even worse.

Being a shy Aspie, I did not date much. My confidence was nil from severe emotional, physical abuse. I almost was date raped by a friend of my brothers. Well I really was not on a date, my brother left his friend and me alone in the house when I was 14 years old and he was around 16-17. This guy was friendly to me but it was to set me up. He kissed me a few times, which I went along with, after all I liked him a bit but then he jumped me, saying "Lets have sex!" I was a virgin and scared out of my wits, he shoved me against the wall, and tried to take my clothes off. I fought back hard, as he laughed, but I was able to get away before anything more dire happened. He must have been a sociopath to try and jump a girl in her own house. What if someone had come home?

I didn't say anything to my parents. When I tried to tell my brother he didn't believe me or told me his friend was only horsing around. Having your shirt ripped off and your boobs grabbed crosses that line. This kid was a real sicko and didn't stay friends with my brother but for some months he would follow me around high school stalking me there. One day he disappeared, maybe he moved away but I was relieved.

So lets just say my experiences with boys was minimal or negative. Being the fat girl there was a connection with boys being the one's who teased me. My father was a raging brute that never treated me with any love or kindness. Part of me was very afraid of men. Sometimes I think it is a miracle I ended up married, but I digress.

So I didn't date at all in high school and in college. I was sexually attracted to men though. I knew I was in a quandary, because I was very attracted to men and I didn't think one would ever have me. I was not attracted to women. I had no interest in that side of things. My family when they realized I wasn't going to enter the convent or become a carbon copy of the wildly successful Sister Feminist then started in on me for not having a boyfriend.

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I didn't know this at the time, but I kept wondering why my mother hated this one close best friend I had. She would come visit me and my mother would huff out of the room. We would take trips together in our early 20s and while I was living at home before my first no contact, we went to a resort area for a week. I still have this friendship and we are very close but it is fully platonic. Back then I realized with my horror, that my mother believed I and this friend were two lesbians. Or maybe she didn't actually believe it but decided to cook the lie while knowing the truth. The fact we were roommates for 2 and half years help my mother build this lie with the family that I was a homosexual. My friend is not a physical demonstrative sort, I probably have only hugged her twice in the history of our friendship which makes this even weirder.

My mother told the entire family I was a lesbian. Why was my mother so fixated on naming me a lesbian when I had only attraction for men? This was her spiteful meanness. She knew it would drive a wedge in with the other family members. For a year, I was clueless while I was getting jaundiced looks and the family seemed even more disgusted with me.  I believe that many of them still believe I flirted with lesbianism to this day. This was one of her worse smear campaigns against me. When I got engaged to be married and met my present husband, I got my father on the phone, I told him, "I am engaged to ******",  He told me, "You have to be lying!"

Some years earlier, my father came up to me, this was before I met my husband, and he told me with woeful eyes and sighs, "I suppose we will have to accept that you are a lesbian, and if you want to bring your girlfriend home, we will allow it". I looked at him, and asked him, "Are you nuts? I am not a lesbian, I am not even bisexual!" He didn't believe me and I walked away.

My brother at this time actually got in a fight with both parents. He told me both my parents believed I was a lesbian and told him and that he argued with them and told them I was straight. He said to them, "She has a Play-Girl poster on the back of her bathroom door! The man wasn't naked in this photo but had a towel over his nether parts for this poster. Remember I wasn't a Christian yet, and had gotten this poster as a gift from a friend. They still argued with him. Isn't this absurd. These people really didn't even know me. At the time I was after this one young man my brother hated, and he told my parents this and that I had romance books at my apartment. I suppose my mother had to stick by her lies.

So growing up I was not allowed to be a girl. My father hated women. My brother learned to see them as sexual objects and not as human beings. The rest of the family elevated all the twisted crap of feminism. Women were not to be protected, women were to all supposedly have great careers that paid all the bills, women were not to be soft but hard as nails. I was supposed to become a super-feminist lawyer but keep perfect house like my mother and pop out grandchildren. One year I was a ready-made slut for even wanting to talk to a boy, and a lesbian for being too old and without a boyfriend. Career empowerment is what they stressed as they held me back and destroyed any idea of being taken care of by a husband or supporting me in being a female. It was all nuts! Even now the feminists still cling to the beloved corporate careers that only come to a very few! [see picture below]

Women who had feelings and love and care were seen as weak or silly. I got the double message of "Don't be a whore!" while forbidden to date at ages most girls are meeting even their future husbands and then abused and put down for wanting to be a virgin until I got engaged or met my husband. I was dressed like Paul Bunyan and then was yelled at for not being popular like one of the "Heathers". I was not given any true Christian values by my family when it came to dating or marriage.  I was dressed like a boy and denied all femininity in looks, thoughts and emotions. Mini-Me was allowed to be a girl, and I was not.

Today I am a woman. My husband likes that I am feminine. He told me he liked the bows I wore when we first met. I think the narcissists were evil to try to even take being a girl away from me!

"The Seven Types of Negative Parental Mirrors"

The Seven Types of Negative Parental Mirrors

"The "I Don't Matter/I am Invisible" Mirror by the Self-Absorbed or Narcissistic Parent My mother was the sun.  Everything revolved around her happiness, her comfort, her wants and needs.  If I wasn't meeting her needs, she didn't want me around.  She would become enraged over minor infractions.  I was sent to "sulk" in my room if I "didn't get my way" or because she couldn't look at me or be around me because whatever mistake I made was so awful.  Sibling rivalry -- I was selfish and jealous of my younger sisters.  If I did something mean, I was mean. If I wanted something for myself, I was selfish.  If I failed to show thankfulness, I was ungrateful and spoiled.    

She badmouthed people, cut them out of her life for months, sometimes years, then called them up when she started her next home business venture.  She would rant and rave about her coworkers and friends about things they said or did and why they said or did them; she knew what they were thinking, what motives they had, and how it all came back to making her feel bad."

This is a great article. Several of those mirrors would apply in my personal experience.

Two Steps Forward, One Back

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The journey in being an adult child of narcissists can be a difficult path even after one has instituted "no contact". Do I regret my no-contact? Yes sometimes I have thought, "What have I done?" but knowing my nature, I lit the matches and threw them back on the bridges I wanted to burn down. This was to prepare for the moments of weakness that would hit. I have changed in the last year and 9 months probably more then in most of my life. ACONs who go no contact need to know there will be good days and bad days. I have spoken with people who went NC even years ago who spoke of the struggle of the "early years".

Good parts of my recovery

1. Getting to the nitty gritty of what happened. Admitting what happened. Many memories have returned too. Remember when I wrote about the Fat People Smell article? This is such a strange small thing but I had forgotten, repressed the years and years where my narcissistic mother told me I smelled and had "B.O". What did I remember? This happened almost every day with her wrinkling her nose at me. I was even struggling with OCD and over-washed my hands and body. I had "forgotten" how much of a daily thing this was. There has been the other return of memories too some very intense, and other smaller matters of an ongoing emotional struggle.

2. I am realizing that my illnesses are not my fault and deprogramming from the family using them to shame me. If anything my doctors say I am one of their most informed patients, and I did always know what my a1c was. It is important for patients to stay informed of their own medical conditions.

 I was scared recently because my diabetes scores jumped from the 150s-160s to 180s-to 190s or worse. I found out a new medicine I am on increases blood sugars in women for a short period of time and they go back down from my pharmacist. He told me to discuss this with my doctor, maybe wait some more months and this is written down as a matter of fact. If I have to go on insulin I will.

 All my life I have worked hard to stay alive. I have realized the depths of my abuse regarding being sick even more so. Kind people have given me mercy that the family never gave me. It is a miracle I am alive with what I have faced. Sick people with severe rare illnesses even if one had obesity that was unexplained or from an eating disorder, should have love and kindness not hatred and cruelty or being ignored and shoved away. What they did to me in ostracizing me for being fat and sick was unconscionable and it marks them as the kind of people they were not me. I am learning to take better care of myself.

3. I and my husband had grown closer. Our life is very difficult and the money problems remain a consistent severe worry but being away from the family pressures have helped. No more do we have all these people judging him and me, who had everything handed to them while we struggle for every little thing.

4. My boundaries have gotten better and I am not worried about people-pleasing. I still struggle being Aspie but I believe my communication with others is opening up where I can be more vulnerable and form closer relationships with the good people but I am also being more mindful in avoiding toxic ones.

The Difficult parts of recovery

1. This feeling of deep grief. We mourn the families we wanted to have but need to deal with the fact of what we actually ended up with. No Contact isn't always an easy ride. The things I am facing are difficult. What would you say if I told you at times, I feel this grief that scares me. I think this is something my mother did to my soul. I have remembered other times in life where it has cropped up.

It is a feeling of being untethered to the world, a feeling of no hope and a feeling that of intense sadness. It is grief times ten. It is like I don't belong anywhere.  It is the feeling of inner despair that rips my guts out when it comes to haunt me. Two days ago I had this feeling, I couldn't shake it. We were out grocery shopping and the feeling was hitting me, I kept thinking those people matter and belong somewhere and "I do not". These are the thoughts and feelings I have to CONSTANTLY battle to keep going. It does worry me why I am so plagued by these things. Intellectually I can understand what happened to me, but emotionally I need time.

 It has me look at other people and wish I was them and not me. I don't even know how to describe it to therapists, but I think inside it is related to not being loved as a child. It is a feeling that harkens back to the very beginning and something that has nibbled at my being for too long. There is no doubt that having a mother who does not love you is an intense loss and dealing with one who has no conscience complicates things When I am under stress for an extended period of time, it can come back. I fight it with prayer, trying to concentrate on different things and distraction but it seems to creep back.

I think this grief is something all ACONs can relate to. The empty hole inside that started from a childhood where no one used to embrace you, love you or show you any kindness. It can get hard for me still when I see people with their families, knowing they have a place of belonging. When one sees loving families in public, or elsewhere it can be very difficult for us. I do think this may be a loss we will all have to deal with, and accept as something that may always be there. We lost something that was very important for human beings.

2. Realizing the lost relationships with younger people in the family. This would be nieces and nephews and younger cousins. I hate this idea of losing them but what can I do? They don't realize how severely abused I was. They are too young to understand. They don't understand how they have been manipulated with relationships destroyed in the wake of my narcissistic mother and other wicked relatives. One could be abused and the new scapegoat and I can tell maybe is suspecting her mother cannot love, but my worry remains, "What if she becomes like her?" Knowing that because I had to walk away from abusers, that it is possible I will never see them again, has brought me incredible grief. I wanted to be a good aunt and was denied that opportunity.

Grief is Not a Mental Illness

Monday, March 30, 2015

Cannon Colossus

                                               From Pinterest: "On A Grand Scale Here is an old French postcard from my collection featuring Cannon, "The Dutch Giant," a man who weighed more than 700 pounds, and an obese woman. Due to their girths, these two were able to earn a living as sideshow attractions in traveling carnivals and circuses."

Elections 2016

Evil Family

This made me think of my family, except they get older. Satan is real not a cartoon but
many wicked families have literally invited Satan to dine with them.

My Favorite Song When I was 19

Reject Babylon, but this song has an interesting tune to it. Sailing away was something I wanted to do.