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Wed Apr 24, 2013, 07:52 PM

Got a call yesterday evening, that a brother had killed himself and I don't care

I hadn't spoken to any of my siblings in ~10 years, and very little in the 20 years previous to that.

I spent the afternoon puzzling on whether this is just a consequence of estrangement or whether it's a manifestation of my pathologies.

It's another one of those times when I know I'm not doing what is considered expected and 'normal'. But, this doesn't really feel wrong.





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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Wed Apr 24, 2013, 09:11 PM

1. No one is inside your skin but you.

No one can tell you how you feel. If there is sibling affection there is a reason for sibling affection. If there is disaffection, there is usually a reason for that.

"normal". . pfft

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Response to annabanana (Reply #1)

Thu Apr 25, 2013, 07:02 AM

4. Yes, I'd agree that my sense of normal is mine

Which I suppose is part of why my lack of response made me wonder about myself.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Wed Apr 24, 2013, 09:16 PM

2. I hear you.

I have chosen to be estranged from my toxic biological family for almost 30 years.
One of the 2 brothers I barely knew way back when, now I have no sense of who he is at all,
I occasinally get rare updates froma 3rd party that the toxic behavior has not changed.

I was raised with the saying that "blood is thicker that water" and the message that "no matter what, families stick together".
but i saw no value in allowing unhealthy behaviors in my life just because there was a family tree in common.

I am very comfortable with my decision to maintain relationships with non-toxic people,
and damn grateful to have escaped a dangerous destructive family history.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Thu Apr 25, 2013, 02:51 AM

3. I can't speak to any pathologies. I don't know you.

And even if I did they'd probably be contaminated by my own. Your brother didn't have any 'value' to you. I totally get that.

As the years plug along I find myself distancing myself from all of my family. To be honest I'm not 100% certain why this is. I really don't care.

You set the standards for 'normal'. No one else does.

I am sad that another person had been touched by darkness and decided to leave this rat cage we all live in. You do what feels right for you. Death is a funny bird. Having gone through so much of it in recent years I've become very cynical and 'ho-hum' about so much of it. That, I suppose, is one of my pathologies.

You're cool with me. I don't pass any judgement on you for how you feel, or not-feel.


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Response to postatomic (Reply #3)

Thu Apr 25, 2013, 07:49 AM

5. You've touched on part of what is curious to me... I usually can recognize a personal tragedy

enough to produce some empathy for tragedy even when it befalls strangers encountered in news stories. That, or something like it, seems to not be in evidence this time.


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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Thu Apr 25, 2013, 10:16 AM

6. .

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 02:18 AM

7. Personally I think the idea that you HAVE to love your relatives is just another tool people use...

to make themselves feel superior / better about themselves. It's one of those social norms that everyone is expected to conform to and one that for MOST people is easy to do. We all know how we all want to seem "normal" or even better "perfect", the better we fit that model of the perfect citizen the prouder we are. Loving your parents/siblings and "showing them affection" is just another item that people can tick off the list and say "see I'm a model citizen". And it's one that is usually easy to tick off because for the majority the feelings ARE real.

The thing people fail to realize is love is something that's fucking earned like any other emotion. Love doesn't just spring forth from emptiness, you do or don't do things that foster the feeling over the years. It just so happens that MOST parents and siblings are nice enough to each other that love does indeed naturally develop over the years. But there's certainly no reason why one should HAVE to love a parent that abused them or raised them in a toxic environment. It's sad that even this much is blasphemous to say but I stick by it.

Then there is the whole existential argument about what it means to be "normal". How society all wants everyone to fit this cookie cutter definition. People are threatened by people who don't immediately have the right robotic emotional responses to events. I don't know you so there's no way for me to know if what you describe comes from a pathology or not, or whether it's right or wrong. You MIGHT have an issue, don't get me wrong, but don't trust the visceral reaction that OMG there must be something wrong with me if I feel this way, for the above reasons among others.

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Response to Locut0s (Reply #7)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 07:13 AM

8. Some of the last things that were said to me in session, I pretty strongly rejected

which is why I walked away from it I had a feeling that the therapist was saying things about me being unreachable and untreatable just to vent his and to get me off his client list.

My awareness of my lack of feeling about my brother stirs doubt around what I thought were just gratuitously cruel things said by a frustrated therapist.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 01:40 PM

9. To whom does the therapist owe allegience ???????

 

this is whats fucked the fuck up --is everyone to blame or nobody to blame or is it the therapist who plays the roll of sports caster
cheer leader /lawyer .

its good you walked away and didn't look back ----sounds ruff in writing but it's the best way for you to survive.

Further with this need to get the "mental health " profession to become a profession with standards in this world where douche bags want no standards that might hinder cheesey commerce.......

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Response to olddots (Reply #9)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 01:50 PM

10. Thing of it is...I think therapy helps some people, I don't want to say it doesn't

I ended up feeling like the string of therapists I saw didn't do me any good. But that's one experience out of millions.

I'm pretty sure that a woman psychiatrist who I was assigned to, who went on and on about Abilify causing priapism, was genuinely under the influence of her own sickness around sexuality, but mostly I felt that the psychologists I saw couldn't frame my problem in a way that was helped by the methods they chose to employ.

The trouble is comments that were made weren't forgotten and right now they are haunting me...

I suppose this will diminish with time.
















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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 04:50 PM

11. Who knows the agenda behind their opinions ???????????

 

Atleast you know what is going on in your head for real--if you made it up its for real and the reason isn't an outside agenda maybe based on turning you into a research study for some paper they get brownie points for publishing when you are still in need of some peace.


Isn't all we want and need just some peace with this mess they call civilization ? where we are the "malcontents " oh and they are the " authorities "

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 07:46 PM

12. Well, I may have problems, but it isn't JUST ME

My deceased brother's twin called me today. He had spoken with his deceased twin's significant other as well as the deceased twin's sons.

They seem to agree that although there is no will, my brother wanted cremation. They also agree that a) they don't want to be the ones to pay for the cremation and b) none of them wanted to deal with the ashes.

The cremation is estimated at $2800. The funeral home has permission to "spread the ashes in a swampy area" not far from Conway SC.

He moved from the midwest to SC to be with the SO. They lived together for 8 years, never got married. She wants nothing to do with the funerary issues, including final disposition of his ashes, but she's wondering about his property in Illinois.

His sons are from the 1st of 4 marriages. The boys want to know what the status is for his Corvette apparently part of the 'property' in Illinois, but they also don't have any interest in funerary issues and don't care about what happens to his remains.

Hmmph!




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Response to HereSince1628 (Reply #12)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 09:56 AM

14. sounds like you might have good reason to cut him out of your life.

doesn't seem like a guy who was very good at relationships.
i don't talk to my family. i miss a few of them, nieces and nephews. but i had to walk from them because it always cost me more than it was worth to be with them. in a lot of ways. when my mom died, that was pretty much it. i had no reason to stick around.
i think this is not uncommon.

and i think that we meet the world as who we are. maybe it is because of who you are, who they are. that's the way it is.
acceptance is often better than being vexed by a question, imho.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:12 PM

13. i don't quite know that i can completely relate

but i see where you are coming from.

my dad has two daughters from a previous relationship. his family has a relationship with them, but my dad, sister and i have absolutely no communication with them. the last time we saw them was at my grandmother's funeral five years ago, prior to which the youngest called my dad and told him that he was in no way to use the occasion as means to initiate contact with her.

i might be saddened by the fact they were in such darkness that they felt it was the only action to take, but their death in and of itself would bring me no sadness.

edit: my heart will always break for my father that he is estranged from his daughters because of toxic circumstances. i love him fiercely and can't imagine the pain this has caused him and i know my disdain for and indifference to them is caused by that pain. maybe some day i can let that particular pain go.

sorry if this is an inappropriate place for an over share, but it hit on a hurt part of me that usually stays hidden away.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Original post)

Mon Apr 29, 2013, 09:08 PM

15. I have relatives that I feel and have felt that way about

I don't feel close to anyone in my original family now days. I'm closer to my father-in-law than my own father. People in my family have passed on and I haven't even gone to their funerals or sent any kind of sympathy gift. I just wanted to let you know that just in case you are feeling all alone about this...just in case you needed a little validation. I don't think what you are feeling is abnormal given the circumstances of your past.

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Response to Tobin S. (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 30, 2013, 10:00 AM

16. Thanks, I'm not sure it's a matter of lonliness but rather doubt about self-awareness

Isolation from people is something that many of us with chronic mental problems/personality disorders experience to one degree or another. I suppose that it's one consequence of very common fear and frustration of others with our mental illnesses.

I suppose distancing we create from sources of irritation, etc. needn't be seen as other than basic social behavior. The comments in this thread sort of support that. I must agree that I am certainly not alone in having feelings of being separated and apart from family. I think we adapt and get beyond the loneliness more or less as a matter of preserving ourselves. Usually this isn't something that crosses my consciousness.

My problem was, and to some extent is, self-doubt. My awareness of absence of feeling reminded me of the pejorative names my last therapist labeled me with as that therapeutic window was slammed shut.

It's uncomfortable to have self-reflections that define me as uninterested and uncaring. The last time such judgments were sent my way it came from the mouth of a PhD mental health provider who declared me to be uncaring, self-invested, unreachable, deeply and pervasively scared from infancy and damaged beyond the psychiatric profession's ability to aid... a sort of personality he saw as so pervasively flawed that my limited life achievements were best viewed as pathological efforts to overcome a character that was flawed and despicable thru and thru.

I'm still a bit unsettled by -that- feeling. Metaphorically, it's like stepping into a demon's boots and having them fit...

I'm left somewhat unsure of whether that ill-feeling is a consequence of having been traumatized by the hurtful words of a frustrated therapist or whether I've glimpsed my former therapist's insight into my real and horrid self.

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