I'm reading this book Giving the Love That Heals by Harville Hendrix and Helen Lakelly Hunt. I have no idea why I need to say the names. Any who. I think that books like this could potentially be labeled with a full page in the front Dangerous for Incest Survivors. I'm just saying.
I'm getting to the parts where they go through the developmental stages that children go through. They detail the problems that come out of interruptions of the appropriate pattern. I really have lead a text book life. I really have tried hard to be good in exactly the ways I was taught.
Every so often I sit on the floor in my room and I think about all the events they have already missed. They are already that much more whole than me. I tick them off. My father teaching me to be silent and unresponsive while he penetrated my vagina. I wasn't even allowed to cry. If I did I would be given a reason to cry.
My kids have already escaped that. They believe that someone hurting them is a good reason to say, "Stop right now. That hurts me." I wasn't allowed to. I was taught to be passive with anyone who was willing to hurt me sexually. I can be extremely aggressive as long as someone does not go for my cunt. Then I feel my arms lock in as tight as possible to my sides and my neck muscles completely lock. I can move my hands, but not my arms. I feel my voice box basically go limp. I can whisper, "Please, no. Stop. I don't want this."
It started when I was younger than Calli. Both of my children already know a freedom I can't know. This book puts a lot of emphasis on understanding that your children are not you are not going to turn out much like you. Appropriate control and such as children age.
I am absolutely sure that my children will be different from me. They have a whole branch of genetics I don't share. They are growing up with different stories in their heads. Different experiences in their lives.
My kids get two hours of "unsupervised" (I can hear everything they say and do but I don't have visual contact and there is a closed door) time with the iPad every day. My therapist says this is an extremely good idea and I absolutely need to keep doing it.
I treat my therapists as a mixture of older sibling/parent who gives me permission to do what I want to do. Is this really an ok thing to want? Am I allowed to do this without being bad? My therapist thinks taking two hours of downtime in the middle of the day so that I can be patient and loving all the rest of the time is just necessary and will be fine. Till they break the iPad. Ha. They lose it if they start bouncing or kicking the walls.
I'm being evasive. I'm afraid the kids will interrupt and the next part of the book is weighing heavy on my heart. "7-12: The Stage of Concern"
They say you never get "past" the stage you were when you were wounded. Surely I have made some progress beyond Callidora's current level of development. I think I show significantly more sophistication in how I go about getting my way. I haven't bitten anyone in the face in a very long time.
I worry about when my kids each hit seven. I fear that I am reversing the minimizer/maximizer thing with each kid. I don't know. I fear that I will go to extremes and be wrong in every way. I've been thinking about rape a lot.
Apparently Paul Nathan, the last person who raped me before I ran off from the community is back in town. I'm really grateful I was told. I have one birthday party on my radar and she has already specifically told me that he isn't invited. Or the other guy who sexually assaulted me. She was quite thoughtful. I'm not sure I will play at the party anyway. I plan to bring food, talk, and cuddle with Noah. I don't have a fucking thing to prove. So I feel no real desire to play in public right now.
Oh that's defensive and asshole-ish. I have something to prove. I don't have to do it just because other people want me to. I've been listening to P!nk a lot lately. I'm not here for your entertainment. It makes me think about clothing. I've always dressed like a fucking nun. Only in the end--the last two was I finally dressed in provocative clothing.
So what are my kids going to wear in life? Being covered sure as shit didn't save me. Uncovering in what I was told was a "safe environment" wasn't.
It is interesting looking at how I have learned to set boundaries. It's been a slow and painful process. I've been a major asshole. How do I want that to work for my kids? How am I going to behave?
Shanna recently told me that when it comes time to go shopping that she wants to do all the picking. There will of course be some guidance whether that's her favorite or not. She might not like owning a pair of jeans--but she wears them when we are playing in the mud. You have to learn how to accommodate the life you have instead of the life you wish you had.
We will have to negotiate money in advance. Then she can spend it how she wants. Ok. Sure. Why not? It's going to be a gigantic pain in the ass, but that's ok too.
It's disconcerting to read parenting books--innocuous items and experience surges of vaginal pain. Original wounding indeed.
When I was in my early twenties I managed to find a leather dyke gynecologist to help me with vaginal pain problems. The first thing she did was tell me to start eating yogurt whether I liked it or not. Just do it. Experiment. You'll like something. And she told me to get off Depo Provera because it's terrible for women. It thins vaginal tissue in long-term use.
Then we got to the spiffy exam. She looked, said, "Hm. Hang on." She got up and took off her gloves one by one, slowly. Her brow was furrowed. She adjusted how I was sitting. She got a clear speculum and a mirror and a flashlight. She showed me the inside of my cunt.
She asked me, "How young were you when it started?"
There is so much wealth of knowledge in a question like that. But I lacked the ability to gather resources from her. I didn't know how.
So I am running into this problem where in order to process who I am as a separate individual I have to really understand the fundamental ways I will never have a reflection of me. It's all normal and shit but I have a lot of additional strong feelings. Being broken in plain sight does things to you.
Why is everyone else just more intrinsically deserving of love than I was? Because when I think twelve. Twelve fucking assholes raped me I know I'm not counting all of that right. I generally don't count guys who only forced me to give them blowjobs, no matter how violent it was. I don't want to think of that count. I don't like thinking about the neighbors who pee'ed with the door open and invited me in to "learn how to hold one" with that sly little grin.
Over and over. Neighborhood after neighborhood. It didn't matter if they were stinking unwashed alcoholic drug addicts in a trailer park or the nice little Catholic family or the rich old bastard in the mountains. And more. I moved more than fifty times before I was eighteen. I saw a lot of neighborhoods. I don't remember a lot of specifics of the times when I managed to startle but run off.
I was always asked. I said no as I got older. When I realized I could. The first few times I was told, "Come here. Touch it" I did it. Of fucking course I did. With my father ignoring such a command would have resulted in him hitting me in the head. My kids are pushy in ways I wouldn't have been able to pull off. I would have been black and blue. And sometimes it is hard to read these fucking development books and understand why Noah and I both are over sensitive to the noise in some moods and not in others. If Noah is happy he goes along with them playing. If not he's grumpy.
Me too. We are both a bit moody. I hear that's allowed. We'll see.
I think I should stop reading for today. I haven't even gotten through all the ways in which I am supposedly stunted yet. That's enough for one day. I'll finish it. I am finding value in it. They are right--this is all shit that must be kept away from my children.
This is my problem.
I think I need to get back to some extremist argument against educational standardization book after this light and fucking fluffy parenting book. You know, something cheerful.
I'm sick. And I'm crying. The snot is a river. Like my self pity. On that note I am going to go find more to eat.