************************************Denial covers the pain of the past * A blanket over the world * Lift a corner * Don't be afraid * Your life awaits you*************************************

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Looking at Codependency

The more I beat myself up, the more uncomfortable I am.
The more uncomfortable I am, the less I am able to connect with others.
The less I connect with others, the more isolated I feel.
The more isolated I feel, the more I beat myself up.

I thought I was the only one who lived within that cycle. Because of my codependency, I would assess what people around me expected me to be, and become that person. This was not too difficult to achieve if I was with one other person, or even in a group of people that I usually saw together. However, when two of these people or groups came together, it was impossible to be what I perceived was expected of me by both parties. This brought on anxiety that was overwhelming, and so I avoided situations that might put me in the midst of other people.

Yet it never occurred to me that how I behaved should not be determined by what others expected or wanted.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Identifying a Disociative Part that Reacts to Men.

I've found Alternate handwriting (or left/right writing) very helpful in identifying parts-of-self when I'm working on my own. The DNMS is still my favorite way to find my way through the past, but this is a close second.

Here's one from last year when I was trying to understand my distrust of men.

Right hand: Hey, I know you’re there. What’s going on?

Left Hand: I hate him. He doesn’t care about me.

Right hand: Who?

Left hand: It doesn’t matter. They’re all the same.

Right hand: Who?


Right hand: Where are you?

Left hand: I’m at home. I’m always at home.

Right hand: What are you doing?

Left hand: Nothing. I should be doing my chores, but I don’t want to.

Right hand: What do you want to do?

Left hand: Go outside. I want to get away. Go anywhere. Get out of here.

Right hand: How old are you?

Left hand: Almost 12.

Right hand: Why are you so sad?

Left hand: I’m ANGRY!

Right hand: Why? Who are you angry with?

Left hand: Everyone. I just want to run away.

Right hand: What made you angry?

Left hand: My father was being an asshole. I hate him. I don’t need him. I
don’t need to talk to anyone.

Right hand: What was he doing?

Left hand: Oh God, the usual stuff. He says things and I have to listen. He never listens to me. I don’t tell him anything anymore, anyway. I can get by on my own.

Right hand: I know. I remember. It’s ok. You don’t have to tell him. You can tell me. I’ll

Left hand: I’m stuck here. You can’t help me.

Right hand: Maybe I can. I want to help. Come out where I can see you.

Left hand: I cut myself. I scratched letters in my arm. 

Right hand: It’s ok. I remember. Those letters are the initials of a  man you've never even met. You don’t even know him, you know that, right?

Left hand: Shut up. You don’t know. Nobody knows. He talks to me on the phone. I hate being alone here.

Right hand: I do know. I remember. I hate being alone, too.


Right hand: I know it feels good to talk.


Right hand: I’m here. What do you want to talk about?

Journal Entry after the left/right writing:

I had nearly forgotten about that whole thing. I was in 6th grade, and I used to call this guy every day when I got home. It had been just a random number, I used to do that a lot, call random numbers and try to get people to talk to me. Usually people just hung up when they realized they didn’t know me, but he talked to me.

I haven’t thought about that in years It went on for several weeks. I thought about him all day in school and called him as soon as I got home.

I never even met him, but he knew me well because I was not afraid to tell him things. The phone was safe.

I scratched his initials in my arm.

Then, I said -- something… what? Something that made him angry. I remember being surprised that he was so angry. He said I couldn‘t call him anymore.

The marks on my arm were there for a long time.

What did I say? I told him about my arm!

That’s what it was. I told him that I had scratched his initials in my arm and he
freaked out and told me not to call him anymore. He hung up when I called after that.

Wow, I went overboard and then when I told him about it, I felt completely cut off and rejected.

But, it wasn’t real, not a real relationship, just like this. This attachment to Dr. M is no more real than the silly attachment I had to that guy on the phone in 6th grade.

But it’s still really painful. I feel like I lost something important.
That’s all I wanted. For someone to really know me and think I was ok.
I guess it’s all I ever wanted but I am too afraid to let anyone in. But somehow I always take it too far, I always screw it up.

Damn it. I made a mess of everything again.

Maybe it is really not safe to know me.
Maybe my father was right.
When people get to know me, they will find out how bad I really am.
At my next session, we began the DNMS process with the new part I had identified through the left/ right writing -- the angry twelve-year-old.
I no longer felt alone.

Monday, May 11, 2009

What Am I?

I've been thinking a lot about who I am for the last few weeks. I've been trying to understand the phrase "unconditional acceptance."

I have come to understand that I should unconditionally accept myself. What exactly would I be accepting? How can I accept myself unconditionally if I don't know who or what I am?

Am I my thoughts?

If I am my thoughts, then all the convoluted paths my thoughts take would be part of me. Every passing notion, each unbidden idea, would be a piece of me.

If I am not my thoughts, then I am only observing them. I can decide which ones are valid and which ones to disregard. I can take charge of them when they race down a dark and dangerous path.

I think they are mine, but they are not me.

Am I my feelings?

If I am not my feelings then they are only passing chemical reactions, something that happens to me and is outside of my control.

If I am my feelings, then they are valid reactions to what I am experiencing.

I think my feelings are part of what I am. I don't think I would be me without them.

Am I my actions?

I would not hold someone responsible for behaving in ways that were unpleasant or harmful, if the person couldn’t know the outcome.

I have often told my children I didn’t like something they did. Of course this never meant that I didn’t like them.

I have been told to be angry at a choice someone made, but not at the person.

If I behave badly, make a poor choice, it doesn't change who I am.

It seems I am not my actions.

Am I my body?

If I lost an arm, would I be less of a person, less me than I am now?

If I woke up one morning and was looking out of a face I’d never seen before, would I still be me?

My body has changed a lot in my lifetime, but I think I am still the same person.

I do not think my body is me.

Am I a collection of my experiences and memories?

If I am, then who was I when I was born? I existed. I was alive. I must have been someone.

There are things I didn’t remember until quite recently. Am I a different person now because I remember them? I feel differently about some things, but I still have a sense of continuity.

I think I was the same person the day before and the day after I lost my virginity. I think I am the same person today as I was when I skinned my knees rollerskating as a child, started college, and gave birth to my children.

I would be different if I had been raised in a different country, or been born to different parents. There are a million things that could have happened or may happen that could change my life.
But does that mean they would change who I am?

I think it would still be me, no matter what happened along the way. I do not think I am my memories and experiences. I think I learn from them, but they are not me.

Are my dissociative parts me?

I often had the sense that “I” wasn’t there when I would dissociate. My body was there and functioning, speaking and thinking, but it wasn’t me. Someone else would appear to protect me, to take over when I couldn’t handle something, to have fun or take care of me when I was punishing and denying myself.

Are these parts really me?

I have been thinking of these parts as individuals, friends, children, protectors, sometimes even as enemies, but not as me.

I have been letting them in a little at a time, but still, I have kept this one section of me separate – the part that feels like me. These other parts of me are there, I am aware of their thoughts and feelings and wants and needs. They feel like more than a memory or an experience.
I think these must be part of me.

Like my feelings, I have looked at these dissociative parts of me as things that happen TO me. I have been letting them in, "integrating" them, but still I am not really accepting them - not accepting that they are as valid as every other part of me.

I need to learn to accept my emotions and these other sides of me unconditionally, and completely, because they are parts of me.

Just thoughts... if you're looking for answers, you'll have to look within.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Considering Other Options

A couple of years ago, my first therapist loaned me a CD he thought might help me “see the big picture,” as he put it. It was a CD called “Open Focus.” created by Dr. Les Fehmi.

You can find out more about Open Focus at their website:

He suggested the CD because I was in a deep depression. Just making it through another day was rough.

I decided to give the CD a try, but I didn’t have much hope that it would help.
I sat quietly, meditating on what the speaker was saying.
The speaker carried me through a journey from deep inside myself out into the universe.
I became overwhelmed by the effect it was having on me.

I felt so excited as I listened that I was not able to stay in a meditative state all the way through. Still, it was a great experience. I wrote to that first therapist to thank him. In that email I said, "What a different way to look at the world. I feel almost high, and really connected in a different way."

In my journal that night, I wrote:
Today I crawled out of everything and into infinity.
I became enormous and filled up all the space in the universe.
I felt all things, those that are living and those that are inanimate, at once.
It was the beginning of a journey towards connecting with myself and the power of the Universe.

Thank you, Dr. M.

Co Creation

Co Creation
We create the life we live

Love your inner child...

...for she holds the key...

...to your personal power.
A lesson is woven into each day.
Together they make up the tapestries of our lives.