Monday, February 14, 2011

a chip & a smaller pants!

Tomorrow I go to my overeaters anonymous meeting to get my 60 day abstinence chip!!! Hurray!!!

Today I fit back into my size 36 pants for the 1st time since last August!!! Hurray!!!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

my sponsor and my mother

Training update: I've lost 22 pounds since Jan. I'm now 28 pounds from my dream race weight. Next weekend I'll be competing in my 1st multisport race since last July.

I hit 60 days of abstinence in 3 days!!! I've only hit 2 months twice before. I've never got to the 3 month mark.

Recently I got my feelings hurt by a comment my sponsor had made to me. A couple days later I talked to her & she had explained that when she said my writing lacked depth, she had meant my last writing only, not all of the writings and steps I've worked. That made me feel so much better about myself & the work I've done on the 12 steps. In regards to my last writing, she was absolutely correct, it was lacking depth. I thought about it & realized I had developed a feeling of self righteousness about the last 6 or 7 character flaws that I was unwilling to ask God to remove from me (step 7). I guess I had felt that since I had started out with 2 pages of character flaws I felt I should be allowed to embrace the few I was unable or unwilling to ask God to remove. That simply won't do. They are flaws & I should continue to try & better myself for God, all those around me, & even myself. I was wrong, my sponsor was absolutely correct.

It has always been frustrating for me to explain my mother because when I tell people about her I end up sounding like I'm crazy. Her actions sound so extreme, her plots so intricate, & the lies so prolific that I feel people think I'm lying. I decided to write about my major complaints about my mother. It was very healing.

These were the things I wrote about pertaining to my mother:

- Her entire life revolves around whatever man she is in a relationship with. Her whole personality changes & she becomes like him. If he's a cowboy she starts dressing like a cowgirl, buys a house in the country, buys horses, etc.

- She continuously puts the man she's in a relationship with and his needs above what's best for me or what I need. She will freak out & defend her man & get pissed at me if there's a problem between him & I, even if he's the one who is causing the problem & I'm completely innocent.

- in relationships, especially in the early stages of the relationships she ignored me & becames angry when I needed anything because it took her focus, time, & attention from her man. Now I could care less, but when I was a kid it was devastating to me.

- She was horribly controlling. I wasn't allowed to visit friends. I wasn't allowed any privacy. I wasn't allowed to talk about it if I was upset. I wasn't allowed to have an opinion unless it was the same opinion my mother had. I had to act as if I liked something if she liked it or I would be shunned & ignored. I had to pretend I disliked the things she disliked or I was shunned.

- she would use her love & attention to control me. Anytime she was disappointed, upset, or angry she would act as if I didn't exist. Since I wasn't allowed to have any friends & was only allowed minimal contact with anyone other than her, when she cut off ties with me I felt as if my whole world had ended. I'd become depressed & suicidal until she acted like she loved me again.

- she doesn't remember entire conversations or problems especially when she was the cause of the problems. She will deny the truth no matter what facts or proof is given.

- she claims people say things during conversations that they never said.

- she makes the same mistakes over & over regardless of the consequences. She never learns from those mistakes & she becomes irate & denies it if anyone suggests she has made that mistake before. She'll claim that person is lying or she'll come up with an amazing conspiracy story to show they are wrong & just trying to hurt her.

- she lies constantly!!!! She lies frequently!!!!

- she makes up stories about people who she's having problems with. These stories seem to become her reality. Eventually she seems to believe her lies & manipulations. It's as if she's living in her own reality.

- she's impulsive. When she gets something in her head she does it even if it's hurtful, dishonest, & irresponsible.

- she either worships or loathes a person. There's no in between. The smallest slight, even an imagined one can cause her to turn on someone. When she turns on that person she doesn't try to talk or work the problem out. She goes to WAR on them. She tries to turn people against them & manipulates other people to turn on them by lying, plotting, & using crazy conspiracy theories.

- she confuses the boundaries of son & romantic relationship. There were times as a teenager or pre-teen that her hugs & kisses were inappropriate.

- she was consistently barging in on me & trying to catch me when I was showering, especially after puberty. The older I got the worse that problem became. In high school I knew without fail she'd run into the bathroom when I was bathing at least once, usually much more. I wasn't allowed to lock any doors, if I ever tried to lock the door for privacy she became furious. The older I got the more she did that. That behavior finally stopped my junior year of high school when she moved us into another mans house & she became focused/obsessed with him for awhile.

- she sets me up to look bad & to make her look like a victim. Especially to the man she's in a relationship with, and especially when they have been together less than a couple years. I.E. One time she asked me if there was anything about her ex-husband (who was physically abusive to her) that I missed (they hadn't been split up for very long). I said no. She kept pushing & asking all sorts of questions & was becoming upset when I wasn't making it sound like I missed him at all. She finally asked if there was anything he used to do with me that I missed. That seemed like an innocent question so I told her sometimes I missed hunting, but I didn't miss him. She immediately went to her new husband and told him I had said I missed her ex-husband & wanted us to go back. I never said that. She lied to make herself seem like a victim who needed to be saved from the evil son.

- she will cut off contact with entire groups of friends & family unexpectedly. She seems unable to keep long term friendships.

- She allowed the men she had relationships with to abuse me. She didn't defend me, stand up for me, or protect me.

Friday, February 4, 2011

turns for the worse

Things were on an all time high for awhile. When things are great they are fantastic, but when it's not everything sure turns bad quickly.

On Tuesday I got a text message from my mother saying she doubted she could work through the problems she has with my wife since there is more than one issue. She said if there was only one problem she could see hope, but since there's more than one she doubts they can. This was the 6th time she said this to me in a couple weeks. She then asked if she could call & talk to me. I responded saying she could as long as it was about her & I. I said that because she gossips & slanders A LOT! Many times word has come to me about some horrible lies she has said about my wife & myself. A week earlier I had asked her to promise me that she wouldn't talk negatively about my wife & I to mutual friends and our family anymore. She promised me she wouldn't. By telling her I was only willing to talk about her & I, all I was doing was reminding her of that promise. She responded with the following text. I copy & pasted it so it is exactly what she wrote.

"Dont misinterpret what i said. i said this whole situation has me feeling steamrolled aka overwhelmed. i thought Dr reinhart encourages everyone to express how they feel. didn't realize that is 4 everyone but me. u just minimized my feelings and made me feel really unimportant".

All I did was remind her not to gossip & slander & I got that kind of a nasty message? She is selfish & hurtful.

I could go on & on about why that exchange elicited a defensive response in me. But what it boils down to is since I was a kid she has made me feel like I'm not allowed to have any opinions or feelings of my own. On the rare times I have expressed my opinion she has attacked me & has gone out of her way to make me feel like I'm some kind of abuser & she is a victim. The other reason I felt hurt by her response is that growing up I was not allowed to make or set boundaries to keep myself safe. Anytime I have ever tried to make a boundary, such as not slandering me to someone, she has challenged me & become verbally & physically aggressive so that she could make me feel like I did something wrong. If that didn't make me be submissive to her then she'd make it seem like I'm an evil person & that she's a victim who is being abused by me. A prime example of this was when I was growing up she'd tell me all sorts of horrible things about my natural father in hopes of making me turn against him. When I was in 2nd grade she told me my Dad cheated on her & that he said he never wanted to be a father. She also said that she left my father because he wore women's under wear & she feared what a man who did that would do to her son. What kind of a person says things that that to a 2nd grader?

When I was in middle school she told me he used to be a part of circle jerks. I didn't know what that meant so she told me it's where a bunch of men make a circle and masturbate together. Highly inappropriate to tell anyone about their father, but I feel it was especially abusive to tell a boy that young.

Last month I asked her not to tell me bad things about my Dad anymore, & if there was ever something she felt she had to tell me about him that she should ask me if she could first. She completely ignored my request & told me that I'm a child from rape. She then told me her Mom & Dad didn't care & forced her to marry him. Who the heck would ever say stuff like that? What about my feelings?

Then on Friday I talked to my sponsor. She told me she felt I was rushing through the steps & that my writing were shallow & lacked depth. Ouch. That hurt. In my mind I wasn't trying to rush through them, I was motivated to work the steps as best as I could. If my writings seemed shallow then I'm not sure what I can do differently because what I wrote was the best I had. If my writings are the best I can do but aren't good enough then in my mind there's no point in continuing.

I'm feeling overwhelmed, hurt deeply, & lost. I know have no idea what to do. It's Gods grace alone that is keeping me abstinent because if I had the smallest craving in my current state of weakness I'd fall apart. I thank the Lord Jesus Christ for stepping in on my behalf & shouldering my desire to binge.

There is good news. I've also lost all my feelings of burnout with triathlon training! I've gone over 3 weeks without missing a single workout & I've figured out what my race schedule will be for the entire year. I'll be competing in 9 sprint distance triathlons, one half Ironman triathlon, & one full distance triathlon. & Since December I've lost 20 pounds. I'm now 30 pounds from my ultimate dream weight. Again, I've been successful because of Gods grave & love because I've tried my entire adult life to overcome my binge eating unsuccessfully. It wasn't until I turned it over to Jesus that I've been able to feel like I have some ability to have a normal life.

If any of you are willing to pray for me right now I'd sure be grateful.

Thank you. By reading this I feel like I'm able share about this dark & lonely disease I have of compulsive overeating, & because of that I feel less alone & misunderstood. You are helping in my recovery, & for that I can never tell you how grateful I am.