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  1. #1
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    Traumatic abandonment

    I am new to this community and joined up to give and recieve insight on this subject primarily.

    I wrote this in my introductory message also but think i should touch base again on it.

    I ve been doing a lot of exploring in psychology for the reason that i am tired of feeling terrible and know that i can enjoy life a lot more if i tackle the problems that are creating this dark, pessimistic perception of everything i encounter. I ve spent a good couple of years seeking help, answers, ways to change, and have tried various ways to improve my well being. Unfortunately, none of these proved effective. I recently found a book that opened my eyes a bit to a more the symptoms that i was enduring. The book turned me towards a different set of research material that i have found very common with what i face.

    I had a very traumatic year about 12 years ago. I lost my mother and my grandma who both raised me throughout most of my childhood. My grandma to cancer and my mother 3months later to a heart attack. I was sent to live with my dad who ended up leaving within weeks after the funeral of my mother for army commitments. I was left for 9 months with my step mom and step sister. I didn't really know them as a close part of my life. Within a day after the funeral i was sent to a new high school in a new town. My sister moved far away which was another person i was raised with. I was 16 years old at this time. I know this is the root cause to my insecurity now and i recently learned that i can combat this and live a normal life. I just don't know how to do it and need suggestions regarding ways to tackle this issue and begin the healing process.

    The insecurity has affected my job, my relationships, my motivation and i know that in the right mindset i can be very successful. I have that drive but its blocked by the insecurity.

    Very respectfully,
    Cameron

  2. #2
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    Re: Traumatic abandonment

    It is understandable that those traumatic years have effected so many areas of your life. It must have been terrifying to lose such influential people and then not have any time to grieve before having to deal with a new school, new caretakers, new home.

    I'm curious to know what book you read to help you gain new insights.

  3. #3
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    Lightbulb Re: Traumatic abandonment

    It was funny, i was having issues with my girlfriend at the time and got really depressed. I got tired of it and went online to find maybe some books to help teaching me coping techniques and what not. I had no idea what was causing me to be so depressed but i knew that this was not normal and so i hit the search button and came across a book called "a tender heart" Some reason the title spoke to me so i bought it and added it to my e reader and read the whole thing in a couple of hours. It touched base on being sensitive, what causes insecurity, how insecurity affects relationships, and how to fix it.

    I think what inspired me the most was about being sensitive. Being in the navy we put on the social persona of being tough and bad ass. The women flock to them, the people flock to them, they do well in the career, that was at least my perception of it. I have always been the caring sensitive guy that doesn't really put on the tough guy act. I hated it and it made me feel like crap. You always hear all these people say that nice guys get the bad seed of life and that we get walked all over due to it. The book said different and it changed my perception on it. It said that its not being sensitive that pushes people away, its that most sensitive people are labeled as such because of its association with insecurity. Insecurity makes the good guy a push over but you can still be sensitive and be accepted for such. People won't make the assumption that you are the "nice guy" They will make an assumption that you are confident. Thats what people flock too.

    The book basically told me to not change the temperance but to change the confidence. It woke me up to want to change.

    Here is the book again: The Tender Heart, written by Dr. Joseph Nowinski PH.D.
    Last edited by David Baxter; August 26th, 2010 at 12:26 AM. Reason: added link to book

  4. #4
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    Re: Traumatic abandonment

    Cool. I like what you wrote and at some point, I'll definitely check out the book.

    Sensitivity definitely doesn't automatically mean insecurity. I went through a transformation while accepting that I am a sensitive person. I still struggle with it though. I even felt uncomfortable as I wrote, "accepting that I am a sensitive person" lol. Part of me still squirms and says, "yuck".

    I grew up in an environment that did NOT promote healthy expression of any emotion. Before my parents split up, I literally do not remember EVER seeing any displays of any emotion from either of my parents. After they split up, my dad continued to not show any emotion, but my mom expressed a LOT of emotion and it was very intense and very unpredictable. Anyway, growing up I remember hearing a lot of , "Oh don't be so sensitive!" and "You're being paranoid" and "You need to relax!" and "You're just making that up." and "Don't be so silly" or "That's crazy!" and a lot of "Oh, stop it.". So, I thought there was something wrong with me and began having anxiety attacks. Then I discovered drugs and alcohol and used them to cope after my parents split up. I was much less "crazy" if I was numbed out a bit. But as the story goes, that only worked for so long before I REALLY started making up stories, acting silly, going crazy and getting paranoid, lol.

    I have used several distractions (and also learned to dissociate) at various points of my life but they never permanently got rid of my emotions, thoughts, insights, intuitions, instincts or perceptions. I'm even physically sensitive.

    But I never wanted to be sensitive. In fact I thought that was the WORST thing a person could be. I was under the impression that it was a very bad thing. I remember consciously deciding to "cut off" the emotional part of me after my sister died. I changed the program I was in at school from social work to business and went into a very male dominated market. I did quite well. But I also ended up crashing and getting very sick years later. At that time I began doing paintings about being fragmented and then about amalgamating. I did one called "Thinking meets Feeling" and that was specifically about trying to reintegrate the emotional part of me. It wasn't until the last few years that I even acknowledged I MIGHT be a sensitive person, lol. Going through the process of taking myself seriously as an artist helped me with that. It was through my struggles of allowing myself to buy art supplies, allocate time to paint and even simply call myself an artist that helped me realize I had been battling core parts of who I am. I was trying to be a cold-ball-busting-business-bitch when really I just am an empathetic person who feels deeply and happened to have some very sad things happen along the way.

    Anyhooo...I kind of went off on a little rant there (I tend to do that). What I initially intended to say was that I liked what you wrote, could relate to it and would check out the book!
    It's nice to hear others accepting and embracing who they are

  5. #5
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    Re: Traumatic abandonment

    It really sounds like your life has had a lot of loss too which can really cause problems later down the road. At the time that my mom and grandma died i had nobody to really release to. I was ignored and misunderstood. The mistakes that people make when they are around someone that is grieving a loss is misreading them. We do this to ourselves when in fact we are only shoving away the pain to the back of our mind. We try to "forget" it. The pain recedes for a period of time and comes back worse basically creating this dark fear of abandonment. Over time, without help it keeps resurfacing in other ways and we keep trying to shove it down by other means. Its an ugly process which is very damaging. For me, i had such a crazy change of life that it put me in shock, i couldn't grieve because when a body or mind goes into shock, we become numb to the effects of loss. We misread this as being healed and stop focusing on grieving. Then abandonment has turned into insecurity and everything that affects you negatively enters your mind and stays. It adds to the pain and over time it completely engulfs your perception of life. Then everything just goes down hill from there until you find the answer.
    It sounds like its been quite a long journey for you. I am sorry to hear it but i am glad that you realize that you needed help. One thing about sensitive people is that everything that we face we use to teach others cause we care about them. It makes us very effective helpers.
    I am starting to ramble on here and losing focus, i still wanna talk to you more though so keep up the writing.

    Cameron

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