13: I’m Proud of ©


screenshot_20181024-0841161You either own your fear and anger or your fear and anger own you.

Sean Kinney


I’m immensely proud of C. Not that it matters but I am going to explain anyway.

C and I are in this situation for a variety of reasons. Some are obvious, some are not. Some are above the line, while others are in my – and probably Cs – blind spots.

As you know, I bristle sometimes at how often over the years C and I have leveraged a Pattern where I played the Hero and took on responsibility for all the emotional weight of the relationship.

I have, on more than one occasion, openly discussed my irritation about how other people carry C’s water and she doesn’t step into her fear or anger. It has allowed a mob of ill-informed Flying Monkeys to hijack the narrative and further scare a traumatized and hurting human being. They have done nothing to empower her or encourage her to lean into her fears. I’ve documented elsewhere what that looks like so I’m not going to get it into here.

red triangle

In my opinion, these interlopers have fueled a Victim Mentality and a Drama Triangle. Her testimony at court Tuesday highlights that fact.

IMO for this the reason, the judge said to her, “Getting your feelings hurt is not harassment.” I’m sure somewhere in the world there are a couple of trolls talking about the “Good Old Boys Club” and how the judge and I were colluding together.

In reality, her avoiding the hard things has, at times, dragged things out. A point even the judged chastized her about. “Why can’t he have his things?” the judged asked.

The difficulty for me is that after 12 months of intensive counseling and openness, I see the Pattern now: I see my part in it and her part. As I said yesterday, I am committed to breaking the Pattern, even if it makes me the villain.

My attorney told me Monday, C would get the restraining order regardless of the facts because that is the “way it is in rural Wisconsin.” She even told me to save my $2,000 and spend it on myself over the holidays. She flat out said, “Don’t waste your morning. Sleep in.”

I kept the $2,000 but went anyway.

villainI’m going to take my lumps, face my fears, and not be blackmailed by my own Pride and Humiliations, or by others. If I did something wrong then I am open to learning from the experience so I can do something different. Hiding from the judge certainly won’t be helpful in the long run. It would have been more conflict avoidance…which is the root of this episode of Shameless I’m currently staring in.

I went willingly to face whatever happened because I recognize the impermanence of the moment. This awareness has been helpful as I strive to learn the tools that allow me to face conflict without fearing conflict. These skills can be learned. Going to court and leaning into the conflict was important for me as I trudge this path.

Which brings me back to C.

I’m proud of her. Probably prouder of her than I have been in a long time.

Here is why: I know C, I know Our Pattern. Unless you suffer from an Anxiety Disorder you cannot appreciate how difficult it is to function in the face of conflict. It is nearly impossible to describe in words the extent of anxiety conflict produces. The emotional upheaval is debilitating.

I would know.

C and I were good together because at times we could lean on each other when the other one was low on emotional resources. I would catch her as she fell, I’d hold her hand, whisper in her ear she could do it, and walk with her.

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Queen Theater, Bryan, TX

I’d stop at places she wanted to see such as an Bill’s garage in Lebanon, MS, the renovated Fox Theater in North Platte, NE, a neon art gallery in Albuquerque, NM, a hippie artist outside Traverse City, MI, and the Boots Motel and Red Oak II in Carthage, MO.

We made hundreds of random, unexpected finds over our years together. I’d go knock on the door, make introductions, and once there was a green light she’d barnstorm the door and we’d spend hours talking history, art, and taking pictures.

I’d usually wander off, find a quiet place, and watch her from a distance effortlessly laugh and smile. It made me hot for her. Thinking of it makes me hot still.

Afterward, I’d remind her, she is powerful and strong, I was her Partner and Cheerleader, and that I believed in her and our life…then I’d take her to bed and love her.

As such, as much as anything, watching her anxieties, and friends, push her into a Victim Mentality makes me sick. I created the fertile ground but others have tilled the garden. It just pisses me off for her just as it pisses me off whenever I see it anywhere.

She isn’t my responsibility but I care about her pain and hurt.

Therefore, on Tuesday, when she walked into the courtroom, walked up to the table, and sat six feet away from me, I was immensely proud of her.

Think for a moment about the courage that took. How she must have leaned into her fear, anxiety, and anger to drive down to the courthouse, fill out the paperwork, file it, and then on the day of the hearing show up.

She did it alone.

She did it without anyone softening the ground for her. She went, talked openly and honestly about how I dishonored her and our life together. For the very first time since discovery, she got to tell me, even indirectly, in her own voice about her pain.

She took a risk, faced the uncertainty, and was emotionally honest. It was courageous. If you knew her you’d know how courageous.

Not that it matters, but I was reminded how proud I’ve always been of her. At that moment I saw the woman I fell in love with all those years ago. At that moment, for the first time in a very long time, I saw the woman I loved.

I saw her Power. I hope she felt her Power too.

I hope this is the beginning of her healing, finding her own voice, and rediscovering her Power. Perhaps she will recognize the courage and strength it took and push back against the fear and anger. It’s the first time in twelve months she could say something in her own voice to me.

Brene Brown says courage doesn’t make you vulnerable, being vulnerable gives you courage. C’s actions were an act of self-empowerment. An act of vulnerability.

Perhaps instead of her fear and anger owning her, she will decide it is time to own the fear and anger.

8 thoughts on “13: I’m Proud of ©

  1. I love this part –> “courage is forged in pain, but not in all pain. Pain that is denied or ignored becomes fear or hate. Anger that is never transformed becomes resentment and bitterness.” – #brenebrown, Braving the Wilderness

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  2. “I hope this is the beginning of her healing, finding her own voice, and rediscovering her Power.”
    I would suggest, from the fact that she apparently has seen no need to contact you in the last year, that she is far beyond this.
    Just pointing out the obvious..

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    1. What strikes me as funny is that you don’t know C, the relationship, what happened in court, how she acts, or about my betrayal. Quite frankly you don’t know anything about my relationship with her, our history, or the intimate Patterns of my life, her life or Us.
      You obviously weren’t in court or know any of the details of what has passed between C and I over the last 12 months or the previous six years and eight months. Yet you assume to know what C is and isn’t doing, and where she is and isn’t. You have no idea of the how or whys of the her choices or mine.
      Just pointing out the obvious.

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  3. Im not intending any disrespect but, humbly: you seem to have consistantly laid out the “hows and whys” of all of your choices for many months in your blog. The same with events involving the two of you both recent and distant.
    In reality, the fact that she evidently was “in court” with you, for whatever reason, logically does not seem to indicate a weak person. Perhaps you are intentionaly trying to see her only as the person she was in the past, rather than acknowledging that she is now someone who has grown and changed in the last year.
    Again, humbly, might this explain your seemingly obsessive compulsion to share pictures of her from your past. This may be interpreted as a way, perhaps, of trying to freeze her in time…
    And it must be stated, dear, that if you post on a blog like this you have to expect some occasion rational commentary beyond the exclusivity of others which only may only serve to enable you…

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  4. SSN, you toss in your opinion that my behavior isn’t rational, people are enabling me, and that my posting pictures as part of my grieving process is obsessive compusive. You do this without actual experience or knowledge and then you couch it not meaning any disrespect or humbly. smh
    I was going to respond as it is an emotionally charged day for me and as a result my first impulse was to interpret it as someone needling my wounds for a sick sport.
    Than I remembered: you don’t know me. You don’t know ©. You don’t know anything actually.
    You simply, like so many people, have chosen to project your opinions onto me.
    You just cannot recognize that my grieving, loss, remorse, or pain is real. That says more about you than me.
    I understand the many health, patient, and loving ways I have dove into this experience makes you uncomfortable. That again, is about you and not me.
    You don’t approve. You don’t like it. You think it is unhealthy.
    I don’t care if you don’t like it…you are reading it by choice. There are a billion plus stores on the internet. Go read something that makes you more comfortable.
    I don’t owe you an explanation.

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  5. No. You owe me no explanation. And I really have no emotion about you sharing a year of your life, for good or bad.
    But your response indicates I am scratching the scab of truth.
    Trust me : I am not one to concern myself with hurting someone’s feelings when they are already drowning in self misery. While my opinion may be just that, I was merely suggesting that your projection of what your ex thinks, feels or needs is likewise just your opinion. Escpecially after 12 months of not being important to her.
    In retrospect, perhaps your words about this being the beginning of healing should instead apply to you. It sounds as if she is well past that stage, and that you may never get there.

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    1. You certainly have a high opinion of your opinion.
      Look, you aren’t offering anything real or insightful. You are dropping armchair psychology buzzwords into the conversation. Words specifically chosen to manipulate the weak spots in my grieving and pain.
      However, you have offered nothing vulnerable or true about yourself. You show up, imply my friends are enabling me, I’m irrational, I’m obesessive compulsive, and brag about your lack of empathy for people that are hurting.
      And because I reject your nonsense, and call out your arrogance, you think you are scratching some truth.
      You aren’t. You are scratching a deep and old wound…and my response is establishing a boundary.
      You are, like so many outsiders, attempting to manipulate me by manipulating my pain. You don’t actually care about me or ©.
      You remind me of a really damaged man I know through my life with ©. He was insanely insecure, jealous, disengenuous, and has all the emotional depth of a thimble.
      Let’s call him Warren.
      At first, because of my pain, humiliation, and loss, his contant interloping into the drama of our relationship and his abusive tactics really created emotional problems for me – and for ©. He took a narcissist glee in trying to control and manipulate © and I. He was, according to someone else that saw his behaviors, a creepy old man. It took me months to shake off his abusiveness…but his kind of narccisim is perisistent and dangerous.
      Of course, he disguises his behavior as altruistic. He is much smarter than me. He is articulate and well read…but for all he knows he doesn’t know people. He is super smart but like you, feels entitled to say whatever he wants because he lacks empathy and doesn’t do feelings. He confuses intelligence with insight. He, like you, gives no pause to hurting people already hurting. As you said, you don’t, concern yourself with hurting someone when they are already drowning in self misery.
      Warren is so insecure and determined to be relevant that at month 10, after months of ignoning him, he wrote my doctor. My doctor and I had a good laugh. He made claims about conversations and knowledge he didn’t have with the police and others. I know because I called those people and asked.
      He has repeatedly created fake WordPress and Twitter accounts so he can insert his opinions into discussions. And then he accuses me of doing that to ©…without proof. He is fueling ©’s pain.
      He’s sad.
      SIDEBAR: Which is funny, you imply I’m full of self-misery, because anyone watching and walking with me know I am full of life, enthusiasm, and positive energy. I have made peace with my behavior and past. So this is one more statement made from your ignorance. I have a great life and true friendship.
      Which brings me here, like Warren, you seem to believe you have some great insight when it is just a well written projection of your own contempt prior to investigation.
      You’ve had your say. It’s time for you to move on.
      I won’t post anymore of your intellectual claptrap. You risk nothing. You hide behind a manufactured profile. You offer no emotional openness.
      You have nothing constructive to add.

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  6. Again, your response indicates that I speak more of the truth than you wish to acknowledge, especially to yourself. “Warren” sounds like a dick, and you say he is fueling her “pain.” Yet you have had no real contact with her for a year. How would you know if she is in pain or not? A real contradiction.
    You are living in the past, thinking that by engulfing yourself in the healing proscess you will somehow heal her and she will return to your side. That is not self-healing, that is self delusion. People here that continuously support this self-deprecation are equally complicit in this deception.
    At some point I believed you were smarter than this in that you were actually trying to move forward.

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