Sunday, May 2, 2010
THE 3 Ps: PERFECTIONISM, PROCRASTINATION, PARALYSIS
Fear of failing to do things perfectly causes procrastination. But that procrastination becomes overwhelming, so I slow to a stop—paralysis.
Last night at the dueling piano bar, one of the piano guys accidentally played a song that Sammie had just played 15 minutes ago. I am terrified of making a similar mistake. It slows me to paralysis, to think of the “what ifs” and possible mistakes. It’s almost as if I don’t want to be involved in the piano bar if I can’t do it perfectly.
Yet, I’ve witnessed the guys making mistakes on stage, and it’s not the end of the world. In fact, the crowd probably doesn’t even notice. “And the beat goes on… la-dee-daa-dee-daaaah.”
I remember fearing and hating belts. I wanted to throw away all belts. However, I have no memory of a belt beating, but I feel like something in my parents’ bedroom might have happened, around age 5-8.
In teenage years, I tried to lock my bedroom door. I feared my dad. He became enraged and demanded that the doors always remain open. At the company where I worked recently, I was probably also triggered when my boss demanded the door to my office remain open, to appear “friendly,” and ignoring any “dinosaurs in the room.” [dinosaurs in the room: a reference to the book, Toxic Parents].
I still sometimes have “revenge fantasies” towards my dad.
pg. 126, Toxic Parents: “Passive Abuser”—mom, who let beatings happen. A partner in the abuse. Abandonment: sometimes I remember her as a blank, emotionless mannequin, as if she’d given up and her soul left her body. My dad was a soul-devouring monster.
Role-reversal: I tried to nurture and protect my younger sister. [Note: This isn’t really a reversal, since my sister was never my mom; it’s more like “role changing/shifting.”]
My dad beat me to get me to cry—not to teach a lesson. The spankings seemed to never end unless I showed emotional response. It was as if he was waiting to see I was in pain.
UNSPOKEN FAMILY RULES (pg. 170, Toxic Parents)
- “Don’t lead your own life.”
- “Don’t be different, don’t be an individual.”
- “Women cannot live alone and must depend on men.”
—I observed my mom break that rule after the divorce.
- “Accept the blame and role as scapegoat.”
- “Take care of others, no matter what the cost to yourself.” [Note: This repeated in 2011-2012, towards my sister.]
- “Don’t trust anybody.”
- “Do not be financially successful; be dependent on dad.”
THE FAMILY BALANCING ACT (pg. 176, Toxic Parents)
[Note: “Act” means like a performance; not a law act.]
The biggest illusion of love and stability was at my mom’s funeral. My dad especially pretended that we were somehow a solid family unit that stuck together, could support each other, and loved each other.
To me, it was the equivalent of someone trying to convince people that the Holocaust didn’t happen. I was so angry at the funeral. Such a lie. The family lie.
The truth was exactly the opposite—at least for me. I didn’t trust anyone. It was an atmosphere of abuse, betrayal, and pain. Not love.
Now, I refuse to speak with any family members. I needed to get out and get away from that lie, to discover the truth—or at least discover who I am as a person. Because one of the unspoken family rules was, “Don’t be your own person.” I’m almost 30 and only now am I finally figuring out my life. THIRTY, for fuck’s sake. Healthy families would encourage individuality way back under the age of 18.
Refusal to get out of denial and see the real issues that needed to be fixed, pissed me off. It pissed me off about the company I worked for recently, as well. How can people be so utterly retarded?