Digging in the Deep – Continuing….

Learning is ongoing and the path I’m on right now is very challenging. 

I’ve been really struggling with the belief that I am not empathetic to my peers, but I am to animals, children and senior people. I have come to realize it is because these 3 topics don’t have judgment or expectations; they have unconditional love, something I’ve always wanted, but haven’t had.

I struggle with my peers and people of authority. But before you assume it is persons like the police, fire department etc. it isn’t. It is people who have arbitrarily vested authority, meaning authority derived from social convention, rather than derived from law or direct reason. 

I asked the psychiatrist about this in group this morning, he suggested I ask my peers in group. I smiled because I felt “very” uncomfortable at the asking what anyone else thought. It seems that people in group feel I am sympathetic, but one in particular had mentioned about the fact that perhaps it is more about judgment from those I would have spent time with and in my case, it was mostly adults. 

I started to consider the possibility that this goes back to my child hood where I was expected to be an adult and not a child. Therefore, I have no respect for those that are adults because my childhood was taken away from me. Not to mention throwing a child into the opposing dynamics between maternal and paternal families. So I was forced to choose, and I chose my father’s family. I chose them because I was valued, appreciated and respected as a child. 

I’ve been made aware that there were those that “meddled” in my childhood with respect to my father’s death and keeping his memory alive. Regardless, for me, it was more about understanding who my father was. I didn’t really know, I had visual dreams of who he was and I spoke to my mother about those dreams. I wanted validation of what I was seeing and she gave me answers. However, they were answers I wasn’t expecting. I was told that he was hard on me, that he had high expectations of me. Maybe he did, but either way I was 7 years old. 

I remember at the age of 16 my paternal grandfather gave me a framed photo of my father. My mother was angry, she felt that he shouldn’t have done that, possibly because he didn’t discuss it with her, I’m not entirely sure. To me, it gave me a piece of my family, because I didn’t have any photos of my childhood with my family. 

When I was 20 I did two very significant things. I went to where my father had been buried. I did this because I didn’t know where he was buried as I had not been allowed to attend his funeral.  I didn’t have closure all I remembered was one minute he was alive and the next minute he was gone. 

I do not remember the ability to ask about my father to my mother.  She wanted him to remain the past and to move forward, but because I didn’t have closure, I was always trying to find it. 

I’m not sure if was 20 or 21 when I went to my family doctor and asked him to tell the story of my father and how he died. My family doctor was truly amazing.  He was kind, thoughtful and sat down and took the time to tell me everything from the beginning til the end of his life, which was 9 months. 

I have begun to realize that there is so much of my life that is mixed with anger and rage mixed in to my behavior. I am aware that I didn’t have control of my choices as a kid, but that I do now. However, the behaviors are ingrained and although I am becoming aware of situations and reasons as to where the anger triggers stem from, I am not sure if they can be changed. 

I guess that is where radical acceptance comes in. That is not easy,  Accepting that decisions were made, with the intent they were supposed to be in my best interest, yet clearly they weren’t, the repercussions of those decisions, clearly affect me as an adult. 

I am really not sure how much I will be able to change, when the core stuff is where the main triggers are. How do I change them, when they are ingrained?