A Keen Observation by My Wife:
During a discussion the other day, my wife said that she has noticed me getting frustrated about being frustrated (when I get frustrated). This is a very astute observation: I get mad at myself for being mad.
How stupid is that?
What a crock of shit.
I am allowed to get angry.
The world will not end.
In the world of my abuser, I was not allowed to have adverse feeling towards her. I was the bad person. I was wrong. She was justified in beating the fight out of me because I needed guidance. Someday, I was told, I would thank her for the discipline I received. Though Love*!! Spare the Rod!!!
I was not allowed to have an opinion. If I did have one, I was not allowed to voice it. If I did voice it, all hell fire would rain down on me. How DARE I contradict her. Who put me up to it? Was is BILLY? or FRED?
So I learned to swallow all of my feelings and walk through life as if I had a level on my head: not matter what was going on below the level, I would adjust so that the little bubble in the tube would stay steady.
I am the master.
No one suspects the horrors I have endured. The bubble is steady.
It usually surprises people when I do vocalize my frustrations. They do not expect it from me. That is not normal!
However, when I do get angry, I feel like I have to be wrong. I get frustrated about my frustration…it is a fucked up feedback loop. There is no winning this game. I think the antidepressants numbed my brain so that this was not an issue for many years…but now that I am off the meds, Pandora’s box has opened up.
I am learning that it is okay for me to be angry, and voice it. If you piss me off, I just may tell you. Beware!
*The Tough Love movement became popular at the same time we started attending a new church (see this blog). The convergence of these two changes in thinking were the catalyst for all new levels of abuse. As long as my mother could make a case for my brother and I being bad kids, she could assuage herself of all guilt. The Tough Love movement was intended for out-of-control teens that were out doing drugs, and stealing car radios, not for kids (like us) that didn’t keep their rooms tidy.