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read this article I found, it made me so mad
October 11, 2006
9:57 pm
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whiteblue1942
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I was looking at the links to articles on eOnlineCounseling.com and I was reading this one. I wasnt looking for it but I was bored and decided to read it. It made me absolutly sick. I was so angry that people could do these kinds of things. Read it and tell me what you think

http://www.enotalone.com/artic...../4290.html

-judy

October 11, 2006
10:41 pm
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Anonymous
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Wow Whiteblue 1942!! Amazing timing. Tonight I attended my first S-Anon meeting for partners of sex addicts. I heard the term emotional incest for the first time and was so shocked.

My h has a too close relationship with his mother who still controls his life. So much started to make sense - altho I still admit resentments. I am researching this topic and I found several sites I saved to favorites to read when I have more privacy.

http://systemiccoaching.com/sw.....prince.htm

October 11, 2006
10:49 pm
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lovetocrochet
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I have the book Silently Seduced. A lot of it described things that would explain the dynamic between my mother and my brother.

He had as much power in our home as my father did... sometimes more. She also had a tendency to dump her personal problems on both of us at times, really poor boundaries.

I'd long felt there was something creepy and "Oedipal" between the two of them. It would not surprise me if covert incest was at play...

I think I read either in this book or another one that when a son is covertly incested he will take it out on a more vulnerable female, such as a younger sister. That is exactly what happened in my case as well.

My husband also dealt with his parents venting their marital problems to him. There was nothing overtly sexual and I don't think they even discussed their sex lives with him. But they still would gripe about each other to him and that's still abusive, that's still a terrible burden to put on kids. My ILs aren't like that anymore but it still did mess up my husband for a while.

October 11, 2006
10:59 pm
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Anonymous
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I am definitely going to explore this subject. My h's parents went through a period when he was young where his dad cheated and his mother tried to get back at him by going to dinner with some guy from work - she took her son (my h) with her. He told me about being in the middle.

His first exposure to porn was his Dad's mags and movies.

I don't know the whole story, but just the way his mother behaves with him is creepy and unhealthy.

She recently was telling him he needed to lose weight (he has what looks like a beer belly that sticks out like he's pregnant). We were walking out of a restuarant and she asked in a loud voice "How do y'all have sex?" I was mortified and I know it embarrassed him.

I walked off, and he made some comment mumble about we do just fine. She has done that sort of thing before and seems to get pleasure in embarassing him.

If you call her on it you get her wrath. No one tells her she made a mistake, or she will make your life hell. She is the walking billboard for "If mama ain't happy, nobody's happy."

In the ealry years of our relationship he used to call her when we were fighting.

October 11, 2006
11:21 pm
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Matteo
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I think there are tonnes of people who do "those kind of things", and perhaps most of them is not even aware of the harm they are inflicting on their own children. I am glad that someone finally speaks about it. I think actually it is quite common in many families – in dysfunctional long term marriages and among single parents alike. Children are treated like adults - helpers, decision makers, caretakers, close friends, and intimate partners, etc. That attitude and treatment is covered by the appearance of close, caring relationship, teaching responsibility or spending quality time with the children. It is another form of abuse and so difficult to put one’s finger on.

Just a few examples: I asked once a 9 year old child: ”Is your mommy is expecting a baby?” , and her answer was: “ Yes, we were planning it earlier but it didn’t work”. I had to ask myself, did I hear it right, but unfortunately I did! I asked someone how was his weekend – and he goes: “Wonderful – I went to the concert with my daughter and we had a blast!” That’s nice but when did you have a blast with your wife?? I heard children talking about another child’s mother (the girl is 7) saying that she tells her daughter about fights with her boyfriend. No girlfriends or sisters with the shoulder to cry on? I mean the little one is complaining to her friends about it! I asked my friend how was his camping trip (husband, wife and two late teenage children) – and his answer was “Great! We were lying in the grass (with my daughter) watching Stars.” How romantic! Huh?? Isn’t that something – especially the lying in the grass part – which you would rather do with your lover, not your child??

As I expressed before when someone says that his children are most important to him (or her) – it is a big red banner in my face. Sure children are important, and small helpless children, who need constant protection, are taking priority, but when you are telling me that relationship with your children is the most important relationship in your life – something is very wrong.

October 11, 2006
11:54 pm
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Matteo-

"As I expressed before when someone says that his children are most important to him (or her) – it is a big red banner in my face. Sure children are important, and small helpless children, who need constant protection, are taking priority, but when you are telling me that relationship with your children is the most important relationship in your life – something is very wrong."

Actually, although I have been told by a therapist that I am a victim of covert abuse and do understand its serious effects, I disagree with that statement unless you qualify it a bit.

A parent's relationship with their children should be more important to them in many respects than that with their partner, BUT different as well. Mothers and fathers naturally do put their children before each other, and this is the order of nature. But to treat their children the same way they treat their mates is NOT the order of nature.

One of the reasons I do NOT become a parent is because it is the ultimate sacrifice and one that I am not able to deal with. Parents who make that decision to bring life into the world have to sacrifice things in their relationship as well as other things once they have children. Their lives are never the same. Many people with children say this, and many say they wouldn't change that fact for the world. Putting your child before your mate in some ways is part of that. Just look at situations where parents neglect their children so that they can continue a self absorbed lifestyle of extended adolescence.

What makes covert abuse such a breach of trust is that some people do not know how to walk the line of proper boundaries here. Your child is yours to protect and nurture, and because that child is in that position s/he is vulnerable... This is were covert abusers take advantage. They feel that person (child) is there to support them, rather than the other way around. It is perverse. Their child is the perfect ally in their eyes b/c they SEEM to know the situation and the spouse better than anyone else (they don't, they are not objective, and often young children), and easily swayed by obligation, trust, or guilt. It sucks. I've been there. But I still think kids come first. Kids of covert abusers are not coming first however, the parents are. And so is their relationship, no matter how you slice it.

-ella

October 11, 2006
11:55 pm
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Anonymous
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You are so right, Matteo.

My h's mother is a real doosie. She has obvious mental problems and is so very narcissitic (sp). To her it was fun to spend an hour telling me all about each sales rep who came to demonstrate vinyl windows - "the one who came Tuesday at 10 was dressed so nice and he was driving a Buick...the one at 2 was not a friendly and didn't bring a sample..."

I swear she went on and on describing each one. I kept trying to change the subject, but she'd go right back to it. I have heard every childhood story many times - she especially likes telling the shocking ones.

But her relationship with my h is a big problem. She signs cards "You are the best son ever." "To my special son."

The worst is talking about sex and asking embarrassing questions.

She buys his clothes and shoes. She has a closet shelf full of the sneakers he likes. When the ones he's wearing look too worn she gets out a new pair... A few months ago his jeans looked worn - she bought him 12 pair.

She butts into our finances and he has insisted she be part of our business. Supposedly to take the load off me. But she calls me 10 times when she's entering data for me with questions that have obvious answers. She is so afraid of making a mistake - and rarely admits it when she does. Her help makes more work for me.

Okay,I'm done venting.... :-0

I'm going t get the book Silently Seduced.

October 12, 2006
12:11 am
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The talking about sex thing is a real no no. My father used to express his attraction to other women not only in front of my mother, but in front of us girls. No wonder we are now a mess with these issues of inadequacy and body image problems. At the time my father was at his worst, my mother was gorgeous. My sister and I used to think she she was so beautiful. We loved brushing her long hair. How dare he mock us? But he did. He didn't realize that girls so often identify with their mothers and he was hurting us as well. What a mess he made. My mother felt like she shouldn't draw attention to it, that if she did, it would make things worse. And later she felt bad about this.

It is not a child's business, even an adult child, to act as a marital counselor. At too young an age I had to hear about all this crap about how my father wanted an "18 year old girl" for his birthday, etc. Sick. NOw I can't believe he is the same man, but I also went through a lot of therapy and so he was confronted. He also went. So I have to give credit where it is due. But the damage is done.

October 12, 2006
12:35 am
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Worried_Dad
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Hi whiteblue1942

This is the support side of the board, so I wondered if you were needing some support or if you were just wanting to talk about a provocative article--we usually do that over on the Liberation Brew side of AAC.

I am curious if the article triggered anything for you relating to your personal hostory?

October 12, 2006
1:11 am
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Matteo
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No not necessarily, WD. Sometimes "we" do it here.

October 12, 2006
2:03 am
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Matteo
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WD ~ this article is talking about the book which talks about another form of abuse – where parents abuse their children under pretense of love and care. What is “provocative” about that?

mzrella ~

I don’t want to be confrontational here, I am just curious: What does it really mean exactly that parents should put their children first? That if there was no food – the children would get it instead of the parents? That’s obvious, the weakest would be protected the most. But if the life of the mother was in danger at the same degree as life of one of your five children, would you let the mother die and not be able to take care of the children while going to work in the factory to be able to feed everyone at lest some food or would you let the mother survive, so she could take care of the four surviving children while you are at work?

How do you understand the concept of “putting the children first”? Why would one prioritize in the first place?

I disagree with the whole concept of making one relationship a priority over the other – children over partners or partners over children for as long as children are living together with their parents and partners and a dependent on them; those relationships are very different and both might be equally important in one’s life.

Having children surely changes people’s lives but doesn’t necessary equal martyrdom and never ending sacrifice. Why do people have children in the first place? Not to mix their DNA with someone they love? Then to enjoy them, take care of them, teach them, nurture them and then – let them go and have their own lives and their own relationships with their partners and later on children – not with their parents?? (Which also doesn’t equal neglecting the parents.)

There is a big difference between neglecting children or putting them on a pedestal and making them first over the partners (and everyone else) - there is a big difference between that attitude and having balanced relationships with the partner and the children at the same time. Relationship with children, in my view should not be the most important relationship in one’s life; it should be one of the closest and most important relationships but not the most important.

I'm sorry but I don't understand how can one put their relationship with the children before that one with husband or wife and actually excercise good parenting, where the efforts and objectives are coordinated. How can you do that if your child knows that he or she is most important and is able to manipulate both parents, often against each other?

I can assure you that not all parents feel this call of nature to prioritize their children above all. Parents have responsibility to nurture their children, not to worship them. I truly wonder how one can claim that their relationship with their toddler is the most important relationship in their lives? Or with a daughter who is married, has children on her own and her own life. I am not talking about love here, but the importance of a relationship. (And if we were talking about prioritizing love - I would also object to that.) Why would they need a partner then? What for??

My view is – if someone wants to have their primary and the most important relationship of their lives with their children (or parents at that matter) – that’s fine with me, but please don’t try to date me, because I don't see a place for developing a partnership between us. I'll make sure that those who disagree with me will not date me anyway.

October 12, 2006
10:18 pm
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Matteo,

A child shouldn't feel as if they can manipulate because "they are more important." We are playing semantics here to a degree.

"Relationship with children, in my view should not be the most important relationship in one’s life; it should be one of the closest and most important relationships but not the most important."

Important is not the correct word for this. I used it when I said "A parent's relationship with their children should be more important to them in many respects than that with their partner, BUT different as well." Because I was responding to
the quote in your post "when someone says that his children are most important to him (or her)..." Honestly, I don't think when people say that they mean they love their children MORE than their partners or that they would let their children make their decisions for them. Love is an altogether different thing, and immeasurable.

Parent child and spouse/lover are completely different types of relationships. I think that's fairly obvious. It is my opinion that if you have to put as much guidance and nurturing to keep your lover around, THAT would be a problem. Parents RAISE children, not each other (IDEALLY). I think when we talk of priorties as far as time, and effort, yes, sacrifices are made. There are sacrifices in romance as well. But when they are made for any kind of love it's not a negative thing. People who have children do not have the time, energy, (sometimes not the money), or even freedoms that they did before they had them. They have to divide these things differently among family obligations. The choices are different.

People are so self centered these days and want it all. Some aren't self centered, they are just given this message that you CAN have it all, be it all, and still have kids with your 5 minutes of time you have left over.

I'm sorry if the fact that I do not believe you can have it all offends some here. Parents can have loving relationships and time for themselves and beautiful lives together without becoming self absorbs jerks. It happens. IT's called a healthy family. I realize I am coming from less than ideal situation, but to make it less personal- look at worst case scenarios that you know of. Look at the best. There is a happy medium in all this. Healthy people have found it.

Personally, I wasn't raised in a healthy family, and I decided long ago I wouldn't have children (for several reasons, but that being one). I believe my parents should have not had children or waited until they were more mature. My friends that have kids cannot socialize, act as irresponsibly, or live quite the same way as those of us who don't. Are they wrong? Unhealthy? No, they are doing things for their kid's best interest. And most of them are quite happy doing so. That is them. Maybe not you, maybe not me.

Matteo, I wasn't trying to be confrontational either, just raise an opinion that was a little different from yours. I thought your post was an interesting point, which is why I responded to you by name. I think we are actually closer to agreeing on some points than it sounds. This is so long so I'll stop here. But I hope it didn't sound like I was being argumentative. I just deal with kids all day who's parents have better things to do than spend time with them. The results are not cool.

-ella

October 13, 2006
9:02 am
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loverbee
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You know, something wierd that has happened in my family kind of goes along these lines. My father, when my sister and I came to that age used to interrogate my sister about the details of her sexual experiences. He'd ask how long it lasted, what position, how it led up to sex, where he was touching her, if it felt good, etc....I learned very quickly that there was something wrong with this. So I didn't tell my dad a thing. I kept my mouth shut and said I didn't want to talk about it. Then when I finally did lose my virginity at 19 to someone I had been with for a year, he found out and started questioning me. I hated it but didn't say a word about it. I think that is pretty sick. Also, the thing that bothers me the most is that, well I am pretty sure he is still in love with his ex wife, my mother. I look a LOT like her, I have the same eyes, skin, body frame and smile and he used to always say to me, "Stop looking at me with those eyes. Just go to your room." I think maybe that has something to do with it.

October 13, 2006
3:06 pm
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Loverbee,

Have you talked to any counselors or anyone about this? Your father's behavior is quite inappropriate, to say the least. Do you have any other siblings?

October 13, 2006
3:33 pm
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lovetocrochet
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Loverbee, that definitely qualifies as covert incest. Even if your father didn't touch you this is still a form of sexual abuse and it is still a toxic thing to do to one's children.

October 13, 2006
8:49 pm
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loverbee
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Yes, I have talked to a counsler which is why I haven't spoken to my father in six years now. He is not a healthy part of my life so I cut him out and I have been a better person since. Thank god for my extended family who have been financially advising me and helping me through college. They are the ones who told me about my trust funds and have encouraged my dreams and ambitions. Plus they accept my bf which is something my dad was incapable of doing.

October 13, 2006
10:59 pm
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It's good that you have family members who are supportive. Abuse like that can affect you in ways that can be long lasting if one doesn't deal with it. It's good that you have and are.

October 14, 2006
2:50 pm
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It took me three suicide attempts and 9 months of being a cutter in order to get the help that I needed. But now I am so much better off. i am glad that I was a cutter and attempted suicide cause I never would have gotten the help I needed if that hadn't happened.

October 14, 2006
7:38 pm
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It is fortunate that you survived. I'm sorry that it took such extreme suffering and desperation to get the attention you needed. It's good that you are in a better place now.

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