Friday, February 24, 2017

I Hate The Religious Right

I hate the religious right.

So many if you tell a person, I am a Christian, many have a view of what that is.

This doesn't mean I read Sojourners either.

But I hate the religious right and have for years. It was despicable to me as a young atheist reading Freedom from Religion Foundation newsletters in the 80s about scandal ridden TV evangelists as today watching Trump do his phony religious pray-a-thons with false preachers. This is a roomful of snakes in the grass:



 I don't think so much of the left either which abandoned the working class long ago and is now stumping for more immigration ignoring endless unemployed Americans, but the religious right is scary too.  I attended IFB churches for years, and have recently left just a year ago. IFB means independent fundamentalist baptist. Today as you all know I remain a Christian but am church-less. There has been some personal fall-out from leaving fundamentalist churches behind, I am still working through.  Read my experience with Mrs. Curses if you have not. It is hard to explain to people, how I am a Christian but I do not see the world the same way Jerry Falwell did.

Religiously as a new believer in Jesus Christ and in scripture, I wanted to find like-minded people and I remember in my first IFB, while I hated the politics, my church then was more rural and working class and it was a world I was very interested in. I grew up in high achieving suburban/urban households, the idea of a simple "frugal" idealized country life appealed to me. However as the years passed by while my fellow church members in that church were friendly and open to us, unlike the second IFB church I left last year, I realized my life was just not like their own. They owned homes, had extensive family networks, at least several of the families within my church then were long time family farmers.  Some were college educated and well-read but many worked in trades and had family businesses.  They had never lived in big cities. Most had secure employment and the men made enough money to support wives they were adamant about not having work. Many families home-schooled. In some ways, going from the Unitarian Universalists to the IFB was a giant leap. That one shocked more then a few people. I guess it was like a hard core atheist going to join the Amish.

Even in those circles during the years my husband had his newspaper jobs, we were down at least a few notches from others economically.  Later the economic chasm would grow.  I noticed older people in that church were far more established, and this is something I have noted in all the conservative evangelical churches I have visited, people my age were extremely rare.  I am now almost a senior myself and this never changed.

One thing I want to note here, is my husband, while he went to church with me, did not share the same religious beliefs. My church's politics drove him nuts. I remember he would shake his head. Hey I was shaking my head too but more on that later. 

Sure there were still young people living at home who would come to church with their parents, but there was no one of my generation around. Even in my 30s, I was spending most of my time with adults 30 years older then me beyond the younger pastor and his wife. Everyone was my mother's age and above. This remain true of the churches I attended and visited here including one conservative evangelical church, and the cold IFB, everyone there was older too. No one our age existed in the last IFB church outside a few 30 somethings who were the children of the pastor.  One ignored matter is you will see articles on every now and then is how "younger" people are leaving churches. Here is an article for millennials. This one covers Generation X. It is true. The growing economic divide between young and old is showing itself in churches and in politics too. There are poor Baby Boomers too and they probably have dropped out of the whole system as well. Have you noticed our politicians are getting older? I remember when it was a big deal how old Reagan was, and now Trump is even older and its no big deal. Hmm that slogan sure looks familiar.... What's new is old again and all that...



I got the feeling that older people who all voted for Reagan back in the 1980s and prospered, now had voted for Trump. Was this why religious right politics that stressed low taxes and "self-reliance" appealed to them all? In both my IFB churches, Reagan was openly praised, and this was years and years after Reagan had been president. They loved Reagan, was it because they saw the 1980s as their hey day? I was in high school. Reagan didn't do any favors for me. Why was Reagan being shoved down my throat in 2015? The Reagan Revolution was for the generation before me not my own.

I noticed my life did not resemble any of my church members. I had some heartbreak watching their comfortable lives and yes I had less then Christian "envy". Things seemed idealized for them. Their lives were not lonely. They hadn't been forced to try and follow jobs to stay off the streets. Their aunts, uncles, and cousins lived around them. I did notice that for many of them their own adult children were not doing so well. Many were living at home at advanced ages or they simply were not around. Some had gotten on drugs or got pregnant out of wedlock. Many 20 somethings unable to afford college joined the military out of my last IFB. Some were fortunate and able to share in family businesses and trades. I remember hearing a lot talk about "failed" adult children who couldn't seem to "keep" or "get" a job. 

That was a big theme among the babbling bible study locally I had to walk out of, the over 60s there sitting around the table, all talked about how Jessica and Johnny just couldn't seem to "hold jobs" and why couldn't they get themselves "together",. There were some poorer older members too and especially the among the extremely elderly, I noticed they were less political. People in their 70s and 80s when I was in my 30s would just shake their heads and tell me most politicians were crooks. For some reason younger Aspie me seemed to form extremely strong friendships with people in the Silent Generation. It would be remarked on how young me loved far older people. The religious right took over in the 1980s. People don't realize while it had it's Billy Sunday roots in American history back to the 1920s, it's true heyday was the time of the Moral Majority. This is when politics and religion got married in America.

It always bothered me while in my old IFB, how they preached against taking welfare, and spoke of how bad it was to rely on the government. Many seemed to believe in this idealized world of farmers and others able to feed themselves without outside interference. Of course the ideas of freedom appealed but I always had a lot of cognitive dissonance being on disability, while preachers from the pulpit railed against government "moochers". I had one pastor who even preached about how things went wrong with Roosevelt, he was younger then me so probably picked that up from bible college.  At least Roosevelt did something for Americans. For some reason legions of rich Republican politicians who wanted endless tax breaks for their billionaire buddies were seen as "good men".

At the time I became a Christian, politically I was fed up, that hasn't stopped. Both left and right upset me, and I think the main flag is the Green one [money running the show]. I had burned out and tired of extreme leftist politics while in the Unitarian Universalist Association, I starved in Chicago and never got one dime of help from my UU church of 5 years there, nor the one before while they talked about recycling and saving the oppressed in Bali, and collecting money for Lithuanian immigrants, someone like me was definitely off their virtue-signaling radar.

I became a born again Christian in the early years of the Bush era. Problem was I hated Bush. I don't know what someone could describe me as back then or even now. A disaffected populist? I hated Ayn Rand but believed the libertarians were right on civil liberties. I thought Social Security and Medicare were great programs, they had saved my life. Well you get the picture. Anyhow, when I went to church, while theologically I loved scripture and was learning so much, everytime they got on politics I wanted to barf.  It was full support for Bush full sway. Sure my country church, had a few Alex Jones listeners readers before Alex Jones was outed as a shill who became a Republican for Trump, and they talked about how both parties worked behind the scenes together but those folks were rare. One guy who loved listening to Art Bell, and I would have endless conversations about politics. The pastors didn't like those conversations, we learned to have them out of his ear shot.

There were times I had some trouble in my first IFB church because of my differing political stance.

The pastor praised Bush from the pulpit. This was on the eve of Bush II's reelection. I was upset. That was a cringe-worthy one for my Democratic husband. I didn't support the Democrat either then, but I got so upset I wrote the pastor a letter and told him that it was wrong he supported Bush. I've always been an outspoken person. By then Bush had already gotten us into multiple wars in the Middle East, I mentioned those and how I believed the Patriot Act destroyed the Constitution. He responded and we made peace, in a kind of agreeing to disagree way.

The church was not happy about my war protesting. I got rebuked by one church member, the pastor probably stayed out of it given my above letter, for hanging out with "hippies" and "pagans" to war protest. One guy was adamant that I was standing against God's soldiers for the "war on freedom" and was majorly sinning. I told him the "new crusades" were not Gods will. We protested the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. By then I attended a local anti-war group. This was a small town so everyone knew of our activities and would drive by seeing me and my friends with our signs in front of the court house. Things died down and I continued with my anti-war activities, almost to the day I moved away.

I would get lectures on how it was bad to be on "disability" The ex project friend who told me I was a "slave" to disability was not the first time I heard those things. Church members didn't push this one too hard on me, because I was visibly disabled and housebound even in the early 2000s from my lungs but I heard it about others enough. This went along with the things said about people on welfare, how people were "lazy" and "didn't want to work". I would defend people, remember by then I had my years of poverty in Chicago but they were all  very adamant. I would hear about people with food stamps buying lobster, and steaks, all things I never could afford when poor. When the issue came up once about us moving back to my old conservative rural town after my husband lost his job, I wanted to go back, he didn't, we actually discussed what would be the social repercussions in a very evangelical conservative town for people who were once "working class" who slipped down a few notches. Let's just say the social and other climate for people who were very poor wasn't very good. Only two churches had food pantries open to the public and the closest homeless shelter was an hour north in a larger city.

Other issues came up too like the time I was told to read the book, "Me, Obey Him?" which sold an extreme patriarchial vision to women--I think they read that one in the FLDS, and I laughed and said, "Are you crazy?" I got myself in trouble a few times with that topic at women's bible studies. I remember one lady in one of my IFB churches saying that I and my husband were too "egalitarian" between ourselves and that my husband needed to "take charge of me". There was the feeling too culturally as a childless woman, I was less then. Motherhood was the full sum of a woman. That seems to be in a lot of kind of churches. I made a rule to stay home on Mother's Day from any churches even new ones after awhile.

So I had a life of being in religious "right" churches while hating the political "religious right". I know that may seem strange to people. Some may ask why didn't you just leave? I did end up leaving. I have no regrets of walking out of that war supporting church.  I left the second IFB church and wrote about mean "Christians" who want the poor to die in the gutter.  The me of today can not handle being in a church that teaches any of these political things. While I may be in agreement on some theological issues, the world view and reactions to the world or even denial of the realities of my own existence, just are too extreme. I have a far less authoritarian view of the world. I am not a believer in the police state. Jesus was crucified by both the state and religious bodies of His time.

I loved scripture, I wanted to study it intensely and that was provided to me. I was trying to learn about life as a newly saved Christian. I did enjoy much of my time in the first IFB church and they were kind people overall, and I remained friends and in touch on Facebook. The politics though definitely were a ball and chain around their feet, and something that always bothered me. It has put a giant blind spot before many Christians as they have been instructed to "fight the liberals".

All my old church friends I kept contact with voted for Trump. They weren't happy when I came out against him and said, he's not going to make life easier for the disabled and he scapegoats minorities. Trump definitely has formed a sad dividing line between me and old church members. It's worse then it was for Bush. They have bought into all his rhetoric, and the church helped with this. He's bringing in Goldman Sachs as much as Hillary. I support less immigration but think a 20 billion dollar wall is absurd and leaving people stranded. If one reads the  Bible there is a constant exhortation to help the poor, there is also warnings about those who oppress the poor, and too many in the churches especially evangelical ones go running to support the latest Republican politician who wants to cut taxes for the ultra-wealthy and push for more wars. I don't get it and never will. I know this world is not perfect and one can't find Utopia here, but I can't get on board with being part of any of it and the cartoon above illustrates completely what I am thinking. 

The Poor and Disabled in Churches

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Robert Irwin



Wow he is just like his dad. It would be great if he has inherited his father's love of animals and continues work in the same field.

Happier Poor People



We live such a strange life. Well today we went and got this breakfast at a local church, it was really good with eggs and Bob Evan's sausage. They even gave me ketchup for my eggs. I enjoyed that meal and the fact that winter has vanished and it is in the 60s.  Even though we are poor we have to try and enjoy life the best we can. Yesterday I sat down outside by our big lake on a bench and people watched and went and go more library books including Joyce Carol Oates latest book. I've read everything she has written. So yesterday I was more mellow. Today I have to rest due to being swollen and doing stuff so I am glad I got the breakfast and spent some time outdoors already today.

Our phone got shut off by one of the major monopolies this week, they didn't send us a shut off notice.  Years ago when the phone got shut off I used to cry and cry, maybe I have progressed but I have my Obama phone to at least call 911 if I get sick and need to go to the hospital. My husband deals with the phone bill and I told him, "They are doubling dipping us!". He doesn't seem to believe me but when he is supposed to constantly pay 79.00 over and over, something is wrong.  He says it's snowballing from last month. He just paid them Feb 4th so I am confused.  I swear all the calls are sent overseas and are outsourced too, making the "punishment" even worse. We talked to some guy who had absolutely no mercy on us. My shouting near the end,  "You get your money every month", didn't help convince him.

 My husband told me to calm down. He would get money for the bill and he did do this and paid it today.  Hopefully it will be turned back on soon. I need to not get so bent out of shape. I have two rules, keep rent and electricity paid and I can survive, but I do wish the constant bills were not such a grind.

 My husband transcribes even thinking of food we need the next day. Someone yesterday gave me information on cheaper internet, so that was nice to find out. People think poor people are all lazy, around here, while I am disabled, we are constantly discussing how do we pay this bill or sell this or get this done? I have something like 6 payment plans going at the same time on a variety of medical bills. This stuff takes thought and work.

 I did talk the maintenance man into recaulking my tub. I told him, "Look I scrubbed at this thing with Tilex and it's not working! It could be my low muscle strength!" Sometimes us ACONS were taught no life skills. I'm in my late 40s and still figuring things out that should have been figured out decades ago. This could be Aspergers leaving me confused about daily life but I am trying.

He came in and used some cleaner that worked on all the tile grout and recaulked it and put this primer on it to keep dirt and mold out. I've lived in this apartment for 10 years and have to keep it from crumbling, so I was happier, my tub looked better, and he gave me a number to a house cleaner that charges realistic working class people prices, not insane ones.  My tub isn't gross in there anymore.

At times, I've been upset at God sometimes for allowing my husband to be constantly tortured via bills, and health problems. I was feeling happier this week and more relaxed and got into a good place, and it's like my bubble got popped. When the phone got shut off I was irritated. I always feel like I am "doing something wrong". There bible verses in there that warn about the "oppression of the poor". I need to pay more attention to those bible verses and what they say to do but I encounter people all the time who told me they stopped believing in God because it seemed like He did not care and I find myself wondering "Does God really send people to the hot place who just got tired?" I worry for those people. There is one bible verse that talks about people ranting at God. That would probably be me

Psa 73:22
So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.
Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand.
Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.
My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

Good Christian friends have told me they have gone through these things. I have told my husband if we ever do go back to a church, we need to find one that is far poorer, and living our lifestyle. We need fellow poor and working class people who will not judge us.

I have asked myself questions about being happier in the world and not always bent out of shape over money and being a more mellow person. There are better days then others.

This article claims rich people see the world differently.

It even claims that empathy is less among the rich. I believe it. There are some kind and good rich people too but there is truth in this study. There is a reason that Jesus in the Bible said a rich man would have less chance of heaven then a camel through the eye of a needle. What happens to people? It looks like science is getting in on this.

"The results “show that people who are higher in socioeconomic status have diminished neural responses to others’ pain,” the authors write. “These findings suggest that empathy, at least some early component of it, is reduced among those who are higher in status.” And unlike self-reports, brain imaging sidesteps “social desirability bias,” where people want to give replies that make them look good or more empathic. “If you’re looking at pictures of people in pain or not in pain, it’s pretty unlikely that you know how to enhance those brain responses,” Varnum tells Science of Us. Moreover, in a 2016 study, Varnum and colleagues found evidence suggesting that people from lower social classes have a more sensitive mirror neuron system — which is thought to simulate the things you see others experience — when watching a video of hand movements. “Our cognitive systems, the degree to which they’re attuned to other people in the environment, is affected by our own social class,” he says."

I have noticed for those who have helped me the most, it was fellow poor people or those in better situations who had experienced poverty in their past. It seemed those who never were poor, had far less understanding for it. One thing I have noted among the poor is there seems to be more openness, people are not as closed mouth. Now I know I am generalizing here and there's exceptions all over the place both ways, but this article made me think about that.

It is true they do. It is interesting to me how the article stresses the social networks of the poor being much stronger. When you are poor you need others. I believe that things can be especially rough for the poor ACON out of a rich narcissistic family because you lose those social contacts and connections and even daily help, that families share.  I have noted unlike good humble families of lower means I have known, my family didn't care for each other. It was every man for himself which is why you got people like my Aunt Scapegoat living in dirt poor poverty and others who made 6 figures. There is no such thing as some guy spending $5,000 on Christmas gifts while his sister is down getting a turkey roaster from the food pantry. Good families work together and this doesn't mean being mooches but people coming together for real support.

I went to this Valentine's meet up at our apartment's office, and this one lady came to talk to me. She was friendly. She lived in a neighboring building. She told me how she was living in an apartment here as she was looking for a new house. I sat there and smiled as she talked about trips to Hawaii, and nice 4 bedroom homes and her professional job. This apartment  I have lived in for years is only a temporary landing spot for her. She was nice enough and I kept it light but had fleeting thoughts about the life I was supposed to have since she was a teacher. I did not see her as a bad person or evil, she was just sharing her life, but it is true the worlds of different socioeconomic classes is very different.

I think this article is right that people of different classes have different cultures. I don't understand the culture of the middle class/upper middle class and above anymore. Sometimes now when they come and talk to me, I have nothing to talk about or I end up talking about my few years in the teaching professions when I was in my 20s and aspiring to those worlds.

 Our problem is, we slid between both of the worlds. My husband was professionally educated, he had semi-professional jobs, even the work he does now for low paid work, takes brain-power and the ability to proof read and write. I was professionally educated as well. I was raised to expect the suburban house, the vacations, and a certain mode of life. I think in some ways this is far worse for people. You are taught to be a proper person, you are supposed to live a certain way and be able to pay all your bills. Getting one's phone shut off is something Queen Spider would shame people for while for normal poor people getting one's phone shut off is normal business. You suck it up, and either get the money or go without and later get another phone.

You are taught to hold certain expectations. They say thwarted expectations can be a rock-bed of depression. It's something I've thought about in seeking happiness for both of us in life. If you slide down the ladder, it's like you lose your place in life. To survive this people have to deal with way things are, not hold out for some future "rich" life. Live the one you got now.

I go to enough food pantries and other places where I run into the fellow poor, and they more often then not have close family and friend networks. I have noticed they don't seem as depressed and upset.  They have people around them sharing in their lot, who don't consider them bad people or failures. Maybe they didn't feel put down by those around them. This has told me, I have to do a better job of finding people in my boat who can relate to me. Don't try to be someone you are not. Queen Spider's constant social climbing had a bad influence on me. I never treated anyone like a snob, but I was living in fantasy land about the social prospects of two poor people among middle class and above people.

We met this one friendly older man at last week's food pantry while picking up some hamburger and canned food, who told us, he had 10 people in his household and several people are unemployed including some of his children with kids. We felt sorry for that guy but my husband later said, "He's taking it all in stride and seemed to still be a happy person". I said, "How does he do it?" and then gave my husband my theory, "He's always been poor and his family is too ". People who always have been poor are better off mentally then those who have fallen down the ladder like us. His family loves each other and they are in it together for the long haul. Notice he did not refer to his adult kids living at home with him as being losers, they are poor people who know the real deal and how the system truly operates. Those are far better values, then cruel cold wealthier narcissists who treat adult children who fall down the ladder like worms, that's the kind of guy to be respected." 

Genteel Poverty Peep: Walking Away From False Shame

Trump The Reality TV Star President.



He's still acting.

And now he's acting in his "job" as president.
 
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/trump-asks-reporter-to-set-up-the-meeting-with-congressional-black-caucus/



We went to protest again they are having weekly ones. This time I carried a sign that said "Preserve Social Security and Medicare", "No to Block Grants" and "No to Tom Price".

My husband carried a sign that said, and I had drawn a big red circle written Goldman Sachs in the middle of it, and crossed it out. I made that sign too. Most people and truckers on the busy road in the middle of my small town, are honking in favor of our protesting. I get the feeling even many Republicans are regretting the vote for this guy. Look I am against the TPP and NAFTA and don't mind immigration being curtailed for the sake of more jobs for Americans, and Trump scares me.

People thought we were going to get a populist--the ones who voted for him, and now they know it's Republican business as usual, giving the millionaires and billionaires all the breaks. Disappointment rules across the land except for the most rich.

The left's abandonment of the working class and the poor put us in this place, so don't think I am making excuses for them too. Trump is acting so extremely, it's not real, it is just more "reality TV" acting. They want to put Pence or someone else in.

Some people shrug their shoulders and ignore the whole psycho-show, I wish I could, there's too many of them passing laws to put too many of us under the underpass. Trump is the "actor" in place to make it all happen.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Big Beak Bird Painting For Sale


This big beak bird painting is for sale. It is a smaller painting, 8 1/2 x 11 1/2.

Email me if you are interested at fivehundredpoundpeep@gmail.com and I will direct you to me and my husband's ebay website.

I painted this in 2007.

[update: this painting has sold]



Sunday, February 12, 2017

Narcissistic Family on My 600lb Life?



The times I watch My 600lb life are rare. I don't believe in weight loss surgery. I know too many who have died of it, or had their few "good" years and then regained it all back.  My year puking my guts out in 2013 from kidney problems is one reason, I have no interest. When the digestion goes, life is hell, and I prayed for death a few times that year hunched over puke pails, so no weight loss surgery for me! It seems many of these patients have lymphedema problems that are massively ignored as well.

 This week, I kept watching this show about Erica after channel surfing, more intrigued by the family dynamics rather then the pursuit of the WLS. It probably was a mistake, the show was very triggering for me. I should have shut it off, but figured I'd watch it to the end, and then write about it on here.

Erica did have some faults, ones I didn't like.  I hate how My 600lb Life, makes every supersized person out to be a food addicted person.  I know they are out there, but there's a reason TV never puts low metabolism or medical cases on there. I never had junk food hidden in my bedroom. The way she talked to this nutritionist bugged me but then what good is a nutritionist who comes in your house and throws away all the bad food and replaces it with nothing?

 No one will change my mind that obesity in America is a malnutrition problem via bad food and the expenses of good food. Finding and obtaining good food is harder and harder. Erica's personality is very closed down and very muted. She makes Aspie me look animated, she is so closed down. I wonder if something is wrong with her because her voice is so monotone and she is so shut down, but this will happen to CPTSD people undergoing more severe traumas and those with other mental health issues. That's beyond my knowing, but you can tell she has gone through a lot. She talks about being sexually assaulted by several men at the behest of a betraying "boyfriend" and also about severe abuse from a father who calls her "Godzilla".

Her family was as mean as rattlesnakes. They were cruel people and chances are, several were narcissists.  They hated her, you could tell and she even admitted they never came to visit her, and ignored her more and more. Her weight disgusted them, though a few of them were mildly obese. Erica took things to the extreme in asking her brother to take months off work to go with her to Houston and that was some extreme boundary breaking but her sister and brother were both very nasty people who you could tell were absolutely sick of her. When Erica said to her brother in trying to get him to help, that she would be dead soon, it was manipulative and showed some of her mental health problems. I wanted to yell at the TV,  "he doesn't care about you!".

They saw her as a "nothing" and a "failure" and I believe this worsened her problems. Take the father into account with his calling her "Godzilla" and this being acceptable in a family and the sickening detail the family did not pursue justice on her behalf when it came to a gang-rape and you know Erica was the scapegoat and dealing with some major narcissists and sociopaths. With my family, I was seen the same way. A lot of my going no contact, came about from my discovery of my Lipedema and being vindicated from all these years of ill health and abuse. I tried to seek answers via my adoption search they refused to answer, I knew I no longer stick around people who saw me as nothing. Sure I had my times of wishing I had been able to "get thin" or become rich to "earn their love" but as I healed, I knew I deserved better. Narcissistic families teach scapegoats to suck up the crumbs.


 Even Erica's keeping her sexual assault secret from her father resonated with me. I had two attempted rapes where I successfully fought off my attackers before rape happened, but I kept those secret too including the one when I was 13 and when the young man stalked me at high school. I knew I would not be believed and may even be blamed. Erica's trauma was far worse but the family dynamics are quite similar. Not one relative ever learned about my attempted rapes.

 The father did not appear on the show though some of his abuse was talked about, and Erica's mother had died. Erica had failed weight loss surgery at the age of 16 and I get the feeling it was something she was "forced" into by a family who used her like a trash can. This surgery failed, so I think it's even worse she got another surgery, and what will keep this one from failing too?

 One reason I never wanted weight loss surgery is it does not fix inner metabolic problems. For food addicts it is just a lock box and for people like me it would not work, except for maybe a mild amount of weight in the short term. I sometimes wish a researcher would do studies on abuse as related to cortisol and severe obesity. It would make an interesting study, as probably daily grinding abuse and PTSD set people up for either addiction or inner damage to the pituitary-adrenal-thyroid axis.

 Erica's family was so nasty and her sister and brother full of utter derision, it shocked me they didn't even tone things down for national TV and the sake of appearances. This show brought back memories for me of the endless derision I got from my family. In my case, while I got some help with cars and car repairs in my 30s, mostly to keep husband able to go to his too low paid work, I never asked my family to let me move in after the age of 21, or help with any caretaking or the daily duties of life. I knew they never were there for me. There was one time my mother even yelled at me, "Don't you dare move back to my town, you embarrass me!" I sucked it up and took the bus or went to the social workers or went without. Even at near 700lbs and I don't know how I did it then, but I was young, I was still taking the bus and able to walk. Thankfully my time at that high of a weight was short, but then I've been stuck in the mid to high 400s to 500s for a long time bouncing around always worrying about gaining.

 Erica needed a lot more help from her family and one could see the major resentment and hatred for her. Some may say well they were practicing "tough love" for all her food addiction, but I didn't see that, I saw disgusted narcissistic people who had no forgiveness for a sister who was struggling. Even if Erica could be demanding, and probably the terrible dynamics set that up, the way they treated her stunk. I wish I could write her a letter and say "Go no contact with your family, they are toxic to you". Keep the niece she has some love but even there be careful she is not manipulated. The way her family treated her was very familiar.

 While I never was dependent on my family or asking them to take me to Houston or haul me out of the tub, the gestures, looks, cruel words and rest all resonated with me. It was like watching my own life be rerun. I didn't cry or anything, I sat there in shock. My husband was busy transcribing while I was watching this show, and later I would have to go talk to him about what I saw on the TV. I exclaimed, "Thank God I went no contact, now I can have some dignity!" and he agreed, that going no contact was the best thing I ever did.

Back to Erica, I believe that the special circumstances of being severely obese and an ACON/scapegoat at the same time can be among the worse things a human being can suffer. It is a life I would not wish on my worse enemy. I have known very fat people loved by their families, I know two in town, one is an Aspie man and the other was a lady in the 400lb range who served as my Stephan's Minister some years back. It makes for a whole other mind set to be loved despite your physical failings. I found love in marriage which probably rescued me too and kept me from utter destruction but to have a hateful family and being fat at the same time in this society is a very bad mixture. For those who face physical, sexual and other abuse on top of it, with high ACE scores, researchers have already deemed a life of ruined health and more chances of serious addiction.

 Her sister's meanness towards her points to narcissism, such as the time Erica is happy she has lost 30lbs and the sister responds, "it should have been more". Another instance Erica is in a hotel room after grueling travel and is sitting there, and the sister is angry at her being upset about her bed. For supersized people not having a proper bed can mean falls or being trapped and not being able to get up. Her sister throws her, a bagged dinner and walks out. The lack of empathy showed itself multiple times. Erica's sister even says at one point "Erica is an embarrassment." Society is always so hard on us, and if you match that up with a family who hates you and rejects you and tells you that you are not good enough over your weight for years and years, that is very hard for a person to survive.

 Some close down like Erica, her emotions were so shut down to "survive". I know I had my slumbering and comatose years though I had my "fight back" times and my finally "run like hell" and "I am done with you people for good" time. If she hopes to regain her health, getting away from toxic people is an important part of this. It will be her only hope.

 We Don't Love You Because You are Fat

Taking the Bus and Trying to Fix Things

I've been taking the Dial a Ride more and more, maybe once a week during warmer times now, to usually go the library or a disability meeting. There's a movie at the disability center in a couple weeks I am hoping to attend. It has helped my independence more. I do need some daily activities from time to time. I still struggle with fatigue and when I do things, my body still bloats up forcing me into bed but it is better to do things and rest then do nothing at all. The drivers talked me into using the lift on my walker, its easier then trying to get myself up the bus stairs and making the drivers put the walker on the bus. I thought I weighed too much and would break the lifts but they said it would be okay and it has. I am under the weight limits.

 I did help husband vacuum our old car yesterday, he washed it, I like doing the washing part, which is kind of funny to do on a walker, but he told me he wanted to keep my hearing aids in and he will do the washing part. Our winter has been very strange. My mind is changing about Global Warming. Something is up when our February has been more like April and will it be 130 degrees by the time June gets here?  I was willing to take my hearing aids out but he knows I am too deaf to hear him then. Wearing hearing aids can stink in the fact, that you do have to worry about rain and getting them wet. I never used umbrellas before and didn't mind being rained on. I hate umbrellas and they are made for skinny people.

I told him, when we go to this one grocery store, I am going to try and walk it instead of using a scooter, I was able to do it one day. I have to walk Aldis, so why not that one too? Walmart is still too big but at least I can walk more. One thing my balance is still bad, I almost tripped in the dining room yesterday not using a walker or cane, and almost fell over but was able to catch myself. I had a glass of water in my hand and some of it went flying across the floor. I think yesterday had a theme to it as later in the day I choked and sprayed water on my computer, and this morning I figured out my CPAP tube is loose and the connector is missing some membrane which probably explains a few high blood sugars. I figured out long ago, if I don't have a perfect CPAP fit and air coming in, the blood sugar is very connected to treatment of sleep apnea. I knew this tube came apart in the middle of the night, I slapped it half back together and then forgot about it. At least there I have new supplies.

However so much of life is trying to fix things and I am not good at it. I try to look up how to do things on youtube, but complex mechanics escapes me. I've still been housebound on some days but glad it has been warmer. I need to find some good paint, and when I went to Michael's art supply almost passed out seeing the prices. I think my mind gets stuck in many years ago thinking on what prices should be. Wages stay low while prices shoot up. I will have to look at ebay. I could get a lot more done with more money.  I'm painting this butterfly painting now but need to get some medium gel for it, and add more details to it. Sometimes I have fantasies about all the things I could get done with money to get them done. It seems like there are constant barriers. I even worry about keeping all these computers going. I seem to be better at inner software repairs on my own then dealing with hardware issues.

I'm planning to go back and protest Tuesday, if it is warm enough.  I have to make new signs though my cartoon one survived. I had a local Move On take pictures of me. I don't support George Soros and pals. This is like my war protesting, I had people I didn't necessarily agree with on all issues, to protest with them. I even agree with Trump on a few things like immigration and doing away with TPP and NAFTA but that's not enough to support a lot of really really bad stuff. There are nasty big picture aspects of Trump with the push to privatize everything for the mega-corporations and the cutting away of more freedoms. The awake see the crawling reality of fascism they all have been working on. This is Bush on steroids.

I was outraged by what they did to immigrants mid-flight and thought why didn't they give a day in advance, that's someone trying to make people suffer and it's horrible.  Even the immigration stuff has been taken to the extreme. I would warn immigrants don't come to this madhouse, some of us wish we could leave.  Tom Price is scary and so is the guy he picked for Labor Secretary who is against minimum wage. The last thing this country needs now is cruel Republicans, who will make life even harder. Americans are losing hope. Life is too much of a grind here. Some screens and distractions isn't enough to make up for it all either.

So I am still trying to get stuff done and hauling this body around at the same time.

Spilled Water on my computer

Anyone know how to replace a Dell Inspiron laptop keyboard? My back up Vista laptop cable frayed and I needed to replace that so I am on the Dell computer with a USB keyboard hooked in, it's not comfortable typing this way. I drank some water and choked, something that easily happens to me and sprayed water on the keyboard part. What is weird is I dried it off in a hurry and thought no water had gone in since it was a spray and not a flood, and I was able to type normally for half an hour before the key's went funny. Some have been sticking already and are worn out. This computer I think is around 7 years old. Any advice I am welcome to it. I am broke right now so the major repair will have to be beginning of next month. My husband said to me, "Well you found a way around, it at least!" Life for me is living like MacGvyer with duct tape.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

How to Make Vegan Pad Thai



This youtube channel is very relaxing to watch. Also she has recipes of good vegetarian food. I am not a vegetarian but like to eat that way on occasion. I do wish vegan food was more affordable, but this is a very interesting cooking channel and I like watching anything that makes me feel mellowed out.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Journals of a Teenage Cinderella Scapegoat

The other day while going through some old papers and cleaning out a closet, I found this old journal I had to write for an English class. All of these below journals appear in the same booklet for the same high school class.  I wrote this stuff as sophomore at 15 years old.

I remember thinking I wish I could tell these teachers more. I could have told them how I got hit,  but being repressed especially in high school, I didn't want to get into the nitty-gritty of my daily life with my wicked parents. I was too scared to reveal more and remember being afraid that I was pushing the envelope on these journal entries.

 I had been warned by then the dire results if I complained to any adults about any of my abuse and was well-trained but here, as you can tell I was showing some of my hand. I hadn't read this journal in years and with of several years of no contact and learning about narcissism, I definitely saw all of this in a new light! 


The above says:

"Parents: First I will talk bout my mother. The only thing me and her discuss is housework mostly she does most of the discussing. I always wish she did not argue about this. My mother always complains about my looks always saying "Comb the back of your hair." Now I will talk about my Dad. One thing he likes to do is treat me like a "gofer". Go fer this, Go fer that. Last night I had to fetch him 2 glasses of soda, a box of rubber bands, tape, a pen and a piece of cake and some others I can't remember. I asked him "Am I your 'gofer' or something?" He said "Yup".

The disrespect of the scapegoat can be so deep that while we will talk about the big stuff, getting hit, and lied to or locked in your room, there's also the more mundane grind that occurs over days and years that takes a toll on us.

The lack of any real relationship with my mother was decades in duration. Notice how I write at such a young age, that the only thing I discuss with my mother is housework.   I am not exaggerating. As a middle aged woman this makes me disgusted and sad any girl would be treated this way by anyone at all. The fact a mother did this to a would be daughter is even worse.

There was some times during my last years of no contact where I tried to think back and remember one positive conversation I had with my mother and I could not think of any.  Besides the missing hugs, the missing conversations were extreme.

Sometimes she would brag about purchases to me as a child and as an adult and I would compliment her on her good taste, etc, but those were one-sided. I never was complimented. I forgot after so many years, all the housework I was made to do, at least three hours a day of the stuff on a weekend day with cooking dinner dishes, dusting and vacuuming.  A lot of my "housework" was basically serving as my father's slave, where I was seen as just someone he could send scurrying around to get whatever he wanted so he didn't have to get up from his chair.

These journals bought back the memories of how he demeaned me this way and he never let up. I could be visiting with relatives or family friends and he would boss me around and tell me to go get things in front of others and it was embarrassing. Sometimes I would rebel and say "No" and I definitely would be backhanded hard across the face or otherwise threatened.  Once I stood up to him and I was around 12 at my grandmother's house because I wanted to play with my cousins and every adult in the room watched silently as he bellowed and screamed at me. Then I had already fetched him 2 glasses, and several plates of food.

 Many family members would watch this charade and never defend me. I admitted this here before but this was not agreeable "gofer" work, where you hand the guy a drink and he thanks you. There was always complaints where you were told there was not enough ice cubes, he can't find the end of the tape, the piece of cake isn't big enough, and you gave him the wrong fork. The me of today knows as a child I was taken for a ride by a narcissist who enjoyed causing me distress and seeing me run around more then a butler on crack.



This one says

Me and my sister: My sister is bossy. Yesterday she was bossing me around so bad we got into a fight. I yelled "quit acting like my mother". She was. I have other things to think about other than housework but it seems she doesn't. When my mom isn't home. She acts like my mother even though she's younger. She thinks she can boss me around. I do the housework but she wanted it done in her order. 

This one is rather self explanatory. This is your typical GC sibling turning into a narcissist taking the authoritarian role, emulating the narcissistic parent. This can happen even to older siblings if they are scapegoated. I realized in the years after I went no contact, that my sister never treated me well, even in the years I considered "better", there were times in our high school halls she would pretend not to know me or would treat me different when other people were around.  This journal reminded me, that things weren't so great before the time I believed my mother turned my sister against me.  She did basically became my mother and she followed the lead on all the abuse and demands for housework.


This is from the time I lost my driver's license, it probably was my learner's permit around this age which one can obtain at 15 in my state. It only occurred to me YEARS later, she lied about hiding it and it was not "lost". Funny how the fog fills our heads back then to avoid the obvious or maybe this was some Aspie blind-spots on my part.  Any teen eager to drive is going to remember what their learner's permit or driver's license looked like.

The above reads: and my mother yells at my dad and me. He brought me home. "Where is your license?" She says she gave it to me and [I] lost it. I am positively sure she never gave it to me and of course I stick by [my] story and of course she does too even though it's wrong. Also my sister goes on her side. I am also mad at her. I can't believe this. My mother says "Why did you lose it, you can't keep track of anything". I yell "how can I lose something I never had." She makes me mad. Even my dad said, You put it in your desk, you didn't give it to her then. She says, I gave it to her later.  I'm going, [I'm ] sure I never saw it".





This one says: then my sister gets mad at me for making everyone yell. So today I am going to go get a temporary license so I'll probably make my brother late for work and he'll be mad at me too. This is really great my whole family is mad at me and I didn't even do anything. Oh well I know the slightest little thing can make them mad anyway. I'm going to laugh when my Mom finds my license in one weird place that she put it. I really hate it when people blame me for things I didn't do. I'm about as mad as I can get and right before leaving for school my sister and brother fight over the recorder [VCR--this is the 1980s] Oh boy what fun. I don't care if school takes forever today.

It makes me sad even years later reading how I hope the license is found and at 15, being so autistic, I am clueless that even if my mother found the license, there's no way she'd ever admit it.  I believe my Aspergers worsened my narcissist abuse, because my failure to pick up on social cues did double my trouble.

The license never did pop up, even years later. I'm sure it found it's way ripped up into a trash can. This was a more minor matter in the scheme of things, I wasn't going to write about my drunk and high aunt who was visiting us back then or my brother getting punched in the hallway to my high school teachers but it's sad when I write how I am tired of being blamed for things. Well being a scapegoat means you are put in that role of being blamed.


This says:

Trying to be a neat person: I am sick of my mother yelling at me to quit being so messy. I don't get totally upset when a splash of water hits the kitchen floor like she does. I do believe in cleanliness not tidiness. But I do keep my room clean. I also don't dress up much as I used to but now I don't think it's worth the trouble. I hate wearing skirts, I like to wear jewelry  but I always fight to put it on. I am sure me and my mother would get along better if I had time to pick the icecube off the kitchen floor and wipe the sugar off the cupboard, but sometimes I doubt it. 

I liked wearing skirts but wrote I hated it here because she made me wear these nylons that never fit right with skirts and dresses, by then I had been dressed like a lumberjack for years outside of my Catholic school dress uniforms and probably was used to it. It only has occurred to me as an adult, her focus on cleanliness was excessive. It was an easy vehicle to use to abuse someone. Back then thin gold necklaces that were hard to work the clasp on were in fashion. Today one can just throw the long beads or cord over their neck but the 1980s were different well at least for those stuck in the American preppy suburban world. The commands regarding housework were constant. I hate housework today, and am bad at it but I know one reason I kind of let it go, is I want to live my life and not just be a cleaning drudge every second of the day like I was as a teen.



This following conservation is interesting. It occurs to me now reading this so many years later, I am the one making everyone's lunch and that's how it was every morning. My brother and sister never made me my lunch. I was treated like a Cinderella, go for this, go for that!

 Even when I got my restaurant job, the household duties never let up.  I think of the small nits, they lived their lives for. I doubt today is much different and this is how all their households are still run. Being criticized for the quality and dryness of the lettuce on my sister's sandwich, that she should have been making for herself, was a bit much. Remember my sister was only 1 year younger then me. Narcissists will of course come up with complaints just to come up with them deriving power and control from criticisms. If the lettuce had been absolutely perfect she would have commented on the mayonnaise being too thick, or too thin. Also know that two major red flags of narcissists around you is the constant criticism on nits and nothing ever being good enough.

This one says:

My family: My mother and sister both are fussbudgets but my mother likes to complain about the littlest things, here's an example of a conversation between both of us

Mother: "Get the lunches made!"
-So I get out the lunch makings
Mother: "Why don't you have two paper towels"
Me: Because I don't-so I get another one.
Mother: "Don't put the papertowel in the slop!"
--"in the slop" is a favorite expression of hers {there was not any} {it means water}
Me: "What slop?"
Mother: "Be sure to put green enough lettuce on your sister's sandwich!"
Me: "Ok --being rather aggreeble"
Mother: "That lettuce is too wet, dry it off. Did you pat it dry? Do you know what these sandwiches would have been like? Soggy! Soggy!
--Meanwhile my sister is yelling "I have no clothes"
Me: "God, what a fussbudget!"
Father: [to me] "Get my coffee!"



This says:

Meanwhile.....

My lucky brother is still in the shower. I go to get his coffee.
My sister: "I don't like that sort of bolonie [bologna] sandwich!"
Mother: "I'll make you some sandwich spread sandwiches" [this was this chopped ham spread]
Me: "Why? I made her a perfectly good bolonie [bologna] sandwich {that's how it's said in this family}
My sister: "I hate this shirt"
Dad: "Where's my coffee?"
Me: "I'm going upstairs, I have things to do after I get Dad's coffee."
so I do---I hear them talking
Dad: "Call her back. She's trying to get out of work, she'll probably just sit around up thre.
So I think  I was getting out of something else--another fun morning in the Queen Spider house ends til the fun afternoon. Note: This is as accurate as a picture as I could make of this morning.

During this instance, my GC sister deems her sandwich "not good enough" and like a customer at a restaurant demands another. My mother as I have written about before, would run around fetching her clothes and making sure her food was "perfect". I have thought about my years as a teen when I was living at home, and how I had no time to ever rest, or sit down, think or relax.

Reading this old journal, while it was muted and very censored for teachers, in that I wrote only about the mundane in a very removed attitude from it all, it still shows enough about what life was like for me. Probably a teacher reading a journal like this in these more enlightened times would be taking a student aside to try and ask how life was at home but back in the 1980s teachers really didn't get involved in that sort of thing.

In high school I was VERY CLOSED down. If I was slumbering away in my adult years before no contact, I was in a comatose state during my teenage years. Even my own writing at that time appears dead like whatever fire inside me had been put out. A few years later as I escaped down art highway, passion for life came back but that was still some time off.  

 I wasn't even barely an artist yet, though in junior year I was doing a few cartoons and started to take some art classes. I saw all this as "normal". I knew I was not loved and was seen as a burden, and I was only worth as "much as I did for others". I was not seen as a worthy person. Sure the complaints about housework, and being bossed around a bit to her high school English teacher may seem like a petulant teen but if you read below the lines, you realize this is not a loved teen, this is not a teen that feels at home and is not one who is accepted. She is a victim of narcissists and sadly it would take 3 more decades to fully break completely free.

I worked with teens later in life, and I have noticed how many teens are treated this same way. Almost like they are not people in their own right, just there to be told to run errands and make themselves useful and with no love or affection. Life long consequences in health and well-being are formed in those years. Anyone who treats a young woman or man this way squelching their potential is a wicked person. It makes me sick to watch narcissistic parents interact with teens, I believe in some ways the damage they do during those years can even have far more repercussions then the earlier ones.

Protesting in the Rain


I went out today to go protest. They are doing a short noon-time protest in front of the local Congressman's office. It was in the 50s but raining like crazy. It's rare for it to be that warm in February, it's supposed to drop back down to the 20s by the end of the week. I was able to sit outside with my umbrella on my walker holding the protest sign above with around 60 other people in my town who are protesting Trump and his various programs and plots. One man had a sign against DeVos. I drew a poster against Trump as "Lucy" holding a football for Charlie Brown, the "American voter" to kick. Charlie Brown is thinking "Maybe this time things will work". Trump promises "I'll drain the swamp!". Well we have seen how that has gone with his multiple Goldman Sachs appointees. If I am living under the highway underpass one day because of Republican leaders who hate poor people, at least I will know I spoke out for myself. 

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Too Deaf for Small Talk



The other week, we went to this church community dinner. It is a charity dinner. They made us grilled cheese and some decent chili. The people are nice and polite. We had a hard month from having to do a car repair and while the bills grow larger none of the money does, one of my husband's contract employers had said "Happy Holidays", oh your pay this month will be cut by two-thirds". I suppose the bosses needed more money for ski vacations or something. Selling a few things definitely helped me get through through last month.  I am going to try and make and sell more art work.

My husband even sold something for 12.99 on ebay last night. Well it's gas money.  Somehow we did manage to pay all the monthly bills except a few medical ones I made phone calls on.

I've noticed when I go to these dinners or food pantries, these middle class and above women who are always at least 15 years older then me always at least 60 but usually on the higher end of that scale, approach me to make "small talk". It happened at one food pantry and now it happened again. It is hard, what do I talk to them about? I have nothing in common. If the room is crowded and busy, I can't hear them and get only every third word so that makes things even worse.

They talk about the weather in extensive detail, and their families. I am always so nervous, sometimes I wish they did not approach me to talk to me.  Before we went, I told my husband, "I hope no one tries to talk to me." He wasn't surprised knowing how I feel.

 There's times I have blanked out. A lot of them remind me of my mother, comfortably middle class and above and with the slight tinge of judgment. I don't think I am imagining it. Last night, we talked about impending negative weather forecasts, snow, the blizzards of 1978 and I was asked "So where are you from?" Sometimes I answer this correctly and just give the name of my old small rural town which I really only lived in for 8 years, but I kind of stammered, "Too many places," 

Something about these women makes me nervous. I hate small talk.

Most of the time when you are meeting others there's other talk in the room, you aren't getting clear one on one conversations. I was at a disability meeting too, and realized at I could not hear half of the words of the disability advocate who was across the room. I'm far more comfortable there since that is a meeting for the disabled. I did turn up my hearing aids and the disability rights movie we were watching, had closed captioning. Sometimes I fake hearing people, you can only say "What?" so many times and try to use the few words I can hear to figure out what they are talking about but it is limited and there is a reason more people think I am slow or not that "interesting".

I need someone to talk to about this as it is worsening. I also am going to try to get a Closed Captioning phone but have to talk to an audiologist in March about this issue. I can't hear a lot of voices on the phone now. I also have to discuss how I can't hear anyone in crowded rooms or if I am too far away. Without the hearing aids, one on one conversation would be gone. My hearing has declined to the point where I have to have the hearing aids in to even hear my husband, at home, unless he is right next to me.

 But hearing issues, aside when the conversations are over, I always feel like I said nothing but the wrong thing. Small talk bores the stuffing out of me. It is hard. What do I talk about? I either go "too deep" or "go silent". I think my poor hearing is affecting me socially more then I ever thought about.


Why Do Aspies Hate Small Talk

Friday, February 3, 2017

Ry-Crisp


Sounds like advice to lose weight that goes along with taking laxatives. Fiber is always good for those who can handle rye but I don't suggest using them this way.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Little Bit of Emotion



See all the people
With hatred in their eyes
I can't help thinking that

It's only a disguise
Cause underneath that core
There's got to be more
That what we realize

Maybe they're scared
To let the inside out
Maybe they're afraid to
Show what they're all about
So they put on a heavy front and hope that no one else
Can work them out
So they pull on all the heaviness
But it's only an illusion heaviness

Can't you see
They're scared to
Show a little bit of emotion
In case a little bit of emotion
Gives them away

Look at that lady dancing around with no clothes
She'll give you all her body
That's if you've got the dough
She'll let you see most
Anything but there's one thing
That she'll never show

And that's a little bit of emotion
A little bit of emotion
In case a little bit of emotion
Gives her away

But it's a shame she's acting that way
Somehow she's gotta get through every day

And the only way
Is not to show one little bit of emotion
A little bit of true emotion
In case of a little bit of emotion
Gives her away

People learn their lines
And they act out their part
Then they talk on cue
But it's got no heart
It's all on the surface
And it's all contrived
They're scared to come out
Somehow they've got to survive

Look at that looney
With a smile on his face
He knows no shame
And feels no disgrace
He's got a look in her eyes
That makes it seem that he's from outer space

Maybe that looney knows what's it's all about
He's got something to say
But he can't spit it out
He's uncoordinated so we shut him out

In case he shows a little bit of emotion
A little bit of real emotion
We're afraid to see a bit of emotion
So we walk away
Show a little bit of real emotion
Show a little bit of emotion
We're afraid to see a bit of emotion
So we walk away


Narcissists hate emotions. I spent my life among too many cold fishes, who ordered that all emotions be obliterated and taught others not to trust emotions but to shut them down. I have learned now after these years of no contact, to avoid people who tell me not to feel what I feel and who tell me to shut down like them. Queen Spider had no emotions, except anger which she used as a weapon. Some narcs when you get angry, will play "nice" and become shut down sociopaths, smiling as you confront them in their lies. Both techniques are used for them to put on their "fronts" while demanding you do likewise. Honest people are okay with emotions and have real communication, not the lies of narcissists. Today I want the cold ice cubes to just stay away from me!

Brick Walls and Ice Queens