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Day 27.5 so damaged

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Stella, Dec 12, 2012.

  1. Stella

    Stella Well known member

    If I had posted this morning it would have been a real bummer note. Journaling, talking and perspective gives me insight and more confidence as the day moved on.

    I continue to talk with my husband. He is seeing sides of me never seen and many I have hidden from myself. Dr. Dave Clarke's book has been very insightful. He says "Children learn how to control their feelings so effectively they feel almost nothing. These buried emotions can be so strong that the mind must express them through the body if there is no other outlet."

    I may have an angry feeling and within a nanosecond it has moved from my head into my body as physical pain. I am in the "feel almost nothing" category because it happens so quickly. Now after reading, educating myself, and journaling I feel a slight inkling that it has happened. The notice I am given is physical pain absolutely no emotion.

    Dr. Clarke says that surviving a dysfunctional home can also cause people to have a number of significant problems. I got married at 17 years old. He was an alcoholic. But he wanted me when no one else did. Certainly not my parents. Thank goodness I married a wonderful man 12 years later who has been very supportive of me for almost 30 years.

    Another point on his list is self-mutilation. I told my husband about this and sobbed during the telling. I had never discussed this with anyone. I was in junior high. I never knew why I did it. I didn't understand it at all. Dr. Clarke says it can provide a way to feel something and can serve as a distraction from emotional pain. It seems like it has been a deep dark terrible secret I have never discussed. But now that the deep dark terrible secret is out I can talk about it. I can stand back and examine what happened.

    After the discussion with my husband I felt like I was so damaged I didn't know if I was ever going to be able to find my way out of this dark hole. But now I feel better. It is just another page to turn in the book. It is just opening the widow a little bit more to let in the light.
    Jilly likes this.
  2. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Sandy,

    You are so amazingly courageous for sharing this. One thing that can always be difficult is releasing that side of us that we have kept buried for so long. When we first start doing this work there are times when we can become overwhelmed by the emotions that come up. We have repressed emotions for so long that we are not comfortable with them when they arise. One of the best pieces of advice I have ever heard about TMS recovery is to be okay with being uncomfortable with your emotions. The more we just allow these emotions to be present, the more we will become okay with experiencing them.

    The most important thing to understand is that whatever you experienced and whatever emotion comes up does not make you a bad person. As goodists and people pleasers, we have a tendency to avoid things that we think people would find disagreeable or unwanted. But having powerful emotions and letting past events come to light does not make us bad people. It actually helps us process our emotions and heal. One idea that I get from Dr. Clarke is that our body is trying to tell us something by creating these symptoms. Our job is to listen to what it is saying by thinking psychological and turning our focus inward. By being able to get in touch with these emotions you are listening to what your body is trying to tell you.

    Recovering from TMS isn't so much about resolving every little issue, but more about accepting that we have these strong emotions. For me, posting on forums has always been extremely helpful, because it has allowed me a place to share some of the things that I have gone through. In doing so, I have been able to reverse the repressive cycle I was in. Hopefully sharing this has helped you as well.

    Best Wishes,

    Jilly likes this.
  3. Stella

    Stella Well known member

    Thanks Forest for you response. I have read it through several times.

    I have felt like my body was going to split in half but 3 days later it is much better. I am becoming Ok with experiencing them... don't like but yes, I can manage this. The physical pain roller coaster continues but nothing to the magnitude it has been in the past. Actually pretty minor. My right shin splint hurts. I have a cough and other pain particularly when around my Mother.

    I never new I had it in me too feel this depth of emotional pain. I, too, in the beginning found that by posting notes from my journaling information gave me additional insight to all my history.

    Other significant problems Dr. Clarke listed I also have had in my life.

    I don't know if I would call it an eating disorder but I have many rules about eating. Never eat everything on your plate. Never take seconds, Never eat dessert, Drink lots of water. When eating a sandwich eat only half the bread. I thought I should write a book... not so much now:)

    Dr, Clarke says many people develop addictive behavior because it can provide some relief from the emotional consequences of a difficult childhood. I do that with about everything I "decide" to do. A dear friend that I walk with helped me to see this in myself. I never realized it before.

    I could have easily been an alcoholic if it weren't for my husband. His first wife was an alcoholic (umh) so I didn't want to do that. I had to please him but times I have been close trying to drown the pain just to feel numb.

    Poor self-esteem, feeling ashamed of past events..... yes, got that and all of the above.

    But now I am moving forward. That is all in my past. In the past several months since reading the Sarno book and starting this program. my relationships with my friends have become so deep and meaningful because I have been sharing with them (making myself vulnerable) my deep pain and sorrow. The love, caring and support has been tremendous. It is only going to get better. Sandy
    Jilly and yb44 like this.
  4. Susan

    Susan Peer Supporter


    I read all your posts and agree with Forest. You are incredibly courageous, disclosive and insightful.

    I can relate to so much of your story. I, too, have used rigidity in my eating behavior as a form of exerting control over my environment and my body. My mom used to hit me "playfully" on my butt as a young adolescent and say"putting on a little weight there, aren't you. Since that time i have watched what I eat like an eagle.

    My parents were in their late 30s when my mom became pregnant with me after having my brother 14 years earlier. Journaling has moved me from feelings of sadness and grief about knowing how I disrupted Mom's life to feelings of compassion for her and for my internal child who felt in the way of her life. Luckily, my father adored me and showed me those feelings.

    My story is long but I find the journaling so important to uncovering my feelings. I have been at this now since July. As I am my later 60s, there is a lot of material to process. I keep waiting to be totally pain free and have made such progress that I am motivated to keep at the programs long as I need to.

    I have been particularly inspired by your posts about interactions with your parents. Your dad's statement after you took away his car keys is so wonderful. I do not know if you are like me and have trouble taking in praise, but I hope you breathed in is compliment and really felt it. I am making a concerted effort to repeat good things my husband and others say about me, feel the emotion and breathe in the compliment instead of numb out.

    As you talk about becoming more real to your husband and friends, I can relate. I have begun to share my past more with my friends and have stopped worry about needing to be perfect in their eyes. Vulnerability is a very appealing trait to others in our lives. I feel very "real" to my friends and family, finally.

    All the best and thanks!

    Jilly likes this.
  5. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    How nice for you to have such caring friends and a husband who listens without judgement.
    Jilly likes this.
  6. Stella

    Stella Well known member

    I find I no longer want to be the person I have been in my past. I am ready to let go of the person I thought I should be.

    I believe what makes me vulnerable makes me beautiful. I want to share this new person. Sure can be scary but I have had incredible rewards.
    Ami, Jilly and veronica73 like this.
  7. Jilly

    Jilly Well known member

    I like who you are then and now ... I feel you as a beautiful flower, delicate, vulnerable ... an amazing spirit, starting to see her own beauty that we saw all along ...

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