Living our truth

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all4peace

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Living our truth
« on: May 17, 2018, 12:59:11 AM »
I could put this in PD In-Laws or Working on Us, and it also works here, which tells me that in my life it's a universal truth: We are allowed to LIVE our truth.

I was listening to a Dear Sugars podcast (thanks to the person who recommended one of their podcasts on this forum!) about parent-adult child estrangement, and they were stating that the parents will have their own story, and it's not going to sound anything like the adult son/daughter's story, and that's ok.

I know for myself after the latest volley of communication between me and my parents after a few months of silence, it was very hard for me to hear their version of their truth, as it's outrageous to me and simply not true. And yet the adult in me realizes at some point I have to stop talking.  So I've decided to stop explaining, and I'll hand it off to a higher power, which for me gives me the comfort of knowing that the real truth IS being seen, just not by my parents.

But what has been so healing for me and DH in our very long and painful journey is finally coming to a place where we LIVE our truth. Some specific examples (since I love it when others share specifics with me to help me understand!)

old: We show up for family photos, family dinners, etc., while being ignored, treated coldly, having our boundaries disrespected or having a one-sided relationship for many months.
new: We show up if it works for us, if our willingness/anxiety are in a good place, and if we have a good reason to want to be there.

old: I share information and news about our lives, our kids.
new: I share almost nothing. If they keep trying to carry on more of a conversation than I'm willing for, I simply stop responding.

And here's the shocker--I realize that even my best friends behave this way! Like most of the world was in on a secret that I didn't know about--we're allowed to stop talking, try as much as we're able to try, say yes or no as it works for us. This is just the way healthy relationships work. Just as I do not get to demand more time from others, demand responses, or demand ANYthing, neither do our parents. They can try, and we can respond as is truthful to our actual relationship.

Both sets of parents have An Image that must be upheld. I suffered a lot of anxiety in trying to maintain that for them, which was me going along with a relational emotional lie. And it didn't even make sense for me, because The Image wasn't important to me. It was only important to them. When I finally started simply living the truth of our relationship, the anxiety started to leave. It was terrifying, anxious times for a while, but the world didn't end, nobody screamed in my face, and I'm still here.

Just because someone tries to terrify/guilt/obligate you into doing something, you don't have to. You do not have to do it. Ever. Never, ever. Seriously. I'm not making this up.

Here's to working through the fear and getting to the other side. My infant, 5, 10, 15 and even 40-year-old selves weren't able to do this, but I am ready to do it for all of us. For my siblings, for my kids, my marriage and every age I've ever been. Here's to honest living.  :cheers:

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truthseeker4life

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2018, 01:51:49 AM »
Yes! Honest living. I am with you. I am just taking baby steps toward honest living.

-sending pd mothers day card that just says happy mothers day with nothing else said that I have to pretend about
-not going to my mom's on mothers day when all my sibs were there as one big "happy" FoO. I hung out with my husband and 2 daughters instead.
-not returning the phone call when my mom leaves a message with the latest family death (but doesn't call me otherwise)
-not going to my sister's cottage as one big "happy FoO" when I know it would be miserable for me and my family.

I had an old therapist say to me "it sounds awful - why do u go?"

I am listening to that voice within myself when it sounds awful. And I am not going (not participating, etc.)

Thanks for the empowering post.

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Fightsong

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2018, 06:17:42 AM »
A4P,  I thank you for your companionship on the journey I have been on in the last few years.

Your post speaks of true honest living for ones self . And that is a gift . Hard earned. Truly back then I did not know that what I wanted or needed mattered. And so I didnít even expend energy trying to figure out what I wanted. ( e.g. do I want to go to that dinner?)

The time it takes to stop, see, rest, unravel, heal, learn, gather the strength to practice, pick up and go - has surprised me. And we all bear witness to that time and struggle for one another. When I am tempted to the old script of Ďit wasnít so badí, I can look here and the pain and desperation you and others have held space for. And remind myself- this struggle has been and remains very real.

I am , just now, at a moment like you. Of looking at authenticity, and wanting to live it. Feeling I can, knowing I am held by my therapist and knowing I now hold my inner children and can hear them and - hallelujah- I can soothe them.

So letís get on with our lives, in this moment, live our truth for ourselves. And know we got here with the same tenacity and courage we witness in others on the same road.  Good work A4p. Well done.

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daughter

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2018, 10:53:40 AM »
A4P: you're so right, "living the truth" should be our guidepost.

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Sun

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2018, 11:39:01 AM »
This is such a great post. Thank you All4peace!

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elly87

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2018, 11:48:02 AM »
amazing post, I couldn't love this more. I am so happy for you for living this way. It inspires me to keep moving along that's same path, although I must admit I still do some mental gymnastics when the fog comes on through where I have to remind myself of how unhealthy they are and stand up for my rights for the sake of myself and my children. It's hard.

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Gaining Clarity

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2018, 01:04:00 PM »
All4peace,

It could have been me saying what you said, just not as eloquently as you have  :applause:


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all4peace

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2018, 10:19:13 AM »
Thanks for the responses! Posting this helps me hold me accountable to this, as I'm sure there will be times when I'm tempted to swerve.

It just hit me that this is exactly what coming OOTF is about. FOG is fear, obligation and guilt, and when our relationships with another person are built on these things we are not living our truth at all. 

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Amadahy

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2018, 01:37:13 PM »
Walk in peace and power, A4P!   I'm getting there!   :hug:
Ring the bells that still can ring;
Forget your perfect offering.
There's a crack in everything ~~
That's how the Light gets in!

~~ Leonard Cohen

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LilMissSunshine

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2018, 12:54:22 AM »
Awesome post! Very helpful. It was just what I needed.  I love it---no one can demand anything of us. I really need to work that into my daily mantra.  Thank you!!!

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Bloomie

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2018, 11:50:50 AM »
all4peace - thank you for this post! Add me to the list here that feel you say it all so perfectly. I wasted a lot of years trying to find a place of truth, or agreement, with the uPD family members in my life so I could build something reasonably reciprocal and healthy with them. :no:

Part of accepting what I cannot change for me is letting go of that unrealistic hope of mutual understanding that would provide a common ground to stand together on. It can feel pretty lonely and strange at first living our truth, and then we surrender the situation to our Higher Power, put down roots in fertile soil, and begin to flourish!

Live in strength and the beauty of your life all4peace! You are an encouragement and powerful voice in this community and we are celebrating this breaking through the FOG with you! :hug:

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carrots

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2018, 12:01:49 PM »
Live in strength and the beauty of your life all4peace! You are an encouragement and powerful voice in this community and we are celebrating this breaking through the FOG with you! :hug:

 :yeahthat:

I wish I could 'yeah that' the rest of Bloomie's post too but I'm not that far along in my healing.

I often read your posts all4peace. They are very helpful to me. I've been reading them since Feb/March 2017 and I have read and seen so much growth in your posts!! Yay for you!  :hug:

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blues_cruise

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2018, 04:23:14 PM »
I know for myself after the latest volley of communication between me and my parents after a few months of silence, it was very hard for me to hear their version of their truth, as it's outrageous to me and simply not true. And yet the adult in me realizes at some point I have to stop talking.  So I've decided to stop explaining, and I'll hand it off to a higher power, which for me gives me the comfort of knowing that the real truth IS being seen, just not by my parents.

Such a brilliant post, all4peace.  :) The one thing I never thought my narcissistic father did was lie, I always saw it as him being selective and manipulative about the truth. Now though I can see how he actually does flat out lie about how things have happened. This was always how he held power over me: by manipulating how others see me. I've also dropped the rope when it comes to explaining anything and just leave people to it. Those who are worth having around will stick around and will judge me based on their own experiences with me. I know I'm a good person and I don't need my mentally unwell father's permission to accept this as truth.
"You are not what has happened to you. You are what you choose to become." - Carl Gustav Jung

"When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time." - Maya Angelou

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lightworld

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2018, 07:08:28 PM »
A4P thank you so much for sharing this, it is just what I need at the moment. You have described so well what I would love to do but have not been able to put into words even to myself. My mind is a splodge of jello when I try to think of this and FOG often takes over. What you describe is a way of freeing yourself from FOG,  so eloquently put and well thought out.

Thank you too for the examples, I really get it now for the first time, what living your truth actually means.  Yours  and  one WI posted recently about 'Bad Daughter jail' have both helped me this week and I am eternally grateful.

I often found your posts have the kind of clarity that provides me with insights into my own situation, you have come such a long way in your healing and generously share your experience and wisdom.  :hug:
An empathic, highly sensitive, caring, loving, naÔve, emotional and vulnerable child is a prime target for a narcissistic parent
Clare Lane

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all4peace

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Re: Living our truth
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2018, 08:38:37 PM »
Thank you for such kind responses! It's been a rollercoaster, and I'm sure I'll hit plenty more bumps in the future, but for now this is where I'm at and I'll be working on getting onto even more solid ground. I'd love to hear more from you all about how you do this in your own lives!

bluescruise, your comment about stopping explaining really resonated with me. So many times on this journey I've had to rest in the knowledge that nobody can know the whole story and my behavior over a lifetime will have to speak for itself. I cannot even tell you how many times I've found comfort in knowing that I have tried to live with kindness and honesty, and if that doesn't show through to those around me then I really have nothing left to say.

I see my poor uNBPDm struggling and losing relationships, and it's been a fresh reminder that our character really does matter, and our behavior speaks louder than our words and protestations.