Perpetrator Frustration

Ok, here is my attempt at describing the phenomenon, I’m currently calling Perpetrator Frustration. PART ONE describes the phenomenon. PART TWO describes the easy way.

PART ONE
I just witnessed another person doing it and it reminded me of when I used to jump on the drama triangle and act like a perpetrator. Here’s the progression. Which for me has taken up to two weeks of power and control behavior until I found resolution.

1. I have a need that I have recently discovered and I want to verbalize it, so I can get support in meeting my need.
2. Sadly, I have no discipline in asking for my needs. My fear, that I won’t get them met, then drives me onto the drama triangle. (loss of intimacy)
3. Now I’m acting like a victim. Expressing how this person has victimized me, rather than taking responsibility and asking for my needs in a healthy way.
4. The person I’m trying to communicate with, is now one step further from helping me because they are protecting themselves from my behavior.

Here’s the kicker…. I have now increased the waiting period for getting help from this person because I have offended them or put them off.

5. Still seething like a victim, I now have to apologize for the “way” that I spoke to them. (this adds to the fear that I will never get my needs met)
6. After a long period of seething (seeing myself as a victim) and in many cases arguing and fighting for days or weeks, I finally come around to seeing that I am not dependent on the other person to get my needs met and I can calmly express my need.
7. Surprise! the other person warms to my speaking honestly and intimately about my feelings (since I’m now owning that THEY aren’ t responsible for making me feel a certain way)

PART TWO
1. Be honest with myself about the feeling that are coming up about not having met this need for most of my life. (Most often, Grief)
2. Use non-violent communication to express my feelings, needs and desire for help in getting them met.

When neither, I or the person I’m asking for help, is on the drama triangle, this process takes less than an hour.

Thoughts?

J

Advertisements

For the Children

Tonight I went to a movie. X-men First Class. I expected to escape into a different world for a bit and enjoy someone’s vision of what life is like. What I didn’t expect was to hear the voice of a 5 or 6 year old in the theater. A pg-13 movie has much more violence than I personally would show my kid at 13, let alone 6. But I am not writing to harp on about that. About half way through the film, I heard the boy say he needed to go to the bathroom. The father began to chastise him and make threatening gestures and comments to him in hushed tones. I thought about reporting the man, but instead I prayed for them both, especially for the protection of the young boy. I’ve trained my mind to bypass all of the judgements that I used to throw at the father, who, let’s face it was being abusing and playing the victim to his young son’s bladder. The father relented and in “victim fashion” took the boy out to pee. The man was 6 foot and at least 230 pounds. 6 times the size of this little boy.

After the film, I happened to be behind them during the walk to the parking lot and I heard the man and his eldest son, maybe 12… big kid, interogating the little boy. Asking, “Why can you watch an entire movie and home, but when we go to a theater you have to leave?’ I thought to myself, “Maybe because he’s just a little boy and the massive movie screen with all that violence is overwhelming… or maybe he’s just a little kid who needs to move to get the stimulation out of his body.” What ever the reason, I prayed for that little boy and his older brother who was learning from the father how to bully his sibling.

I thought, this is why there is a small group of us who have started Violence Anonymous. Because 10, 15, 20 years from now, those two boys, or people who grew up in similar abusive situations will need VA, just like we do today.

This work is healing my medical conditions

Since I was 5 or 6 years old, I have had what one doctor called, dandruff of the eyelids. Nothing debilitation, but I have needed creams and salves to moisten my eyelids so they don’t flake throughout the day. I’ve read books that have asked the question, “What are you afraid of seeing?” Since I have been working my 7th step as a RESCUER, I have been guided into confronting my violent relationship with money. (more on that another time) let’s just say that since I have been fearlessly honest with myself about how I “see” money in my life, my eye condition has vanished. Coincidence? I think not.

J

Violence Anonymous

http://violenceanonymous.org

VA meetings are held via phone

Wednesday meeting. 1:00 pm CST.

Sunday meeting. 9:00 am CST.

We hold meetings on a telephone conference call. The conference is free. Each participant is billed as a long distance call. U.S. Dial-in Number: 605-781-0005
Participant Access Code: 702293#. Press *6 to mute and un mute your phone.

*Note – Dial as if ou are making a local call within your own country. Current meetings are held in English. Participant Access Code: 702293#.

Country Conference Number
United Kingdom +44 (0) 330 606 0182
South Africa +27 (0) 87 825 0100
South Korea 1600-5652
Finland +358 (0) 9 74790022
Lithuania +370 (8) 37 248941
Cyprus +357 77 788850
Poland +48 22 116 80 20
Romania +40 (0) 31 780 7000
GCC/Arabian Peninsula +973 1656 8300
Germany +49 (0) 221 98203420
Brazil +55 11 3042-2465
Hungary +36 1 987 6825
Indonesia +62 (0) 21 51388850
Switzerland +41 (0) 44 513 30 07
Croatia +385 (0) 21 770 719
Kenya +254 (0) 20 5231002
Sri Lanka +94 (0) 11 5 322950
Slovakia +421 2 333 255 40
Georgia +995 (0) 706 777 059
Panama +507 838-7822
Slovenia +386 (0) 1 828 02 25
China +86 (0) 510 6801 0107
United States (605) 562-3130
Luxembourg +352 20 30 10 02
Turkey +90 (0) 212 988 1703
Taiwan +886 (0) 985 646 955
Sweden +46 (0) 8 124 107 04
Nigeria +234 (0) 1 440 5200
Czech Republic +420 225 989 110
Malaysia +60 (0) 11-1146 0010
Netherlands +31 (0) 20 322 3000
Denmark +45 78 77 25 22
Portugal +351 21 005 1180
Belgium +32 (0) 3 294 11 60
Australia +61 (0) 3 9028 0260
Israel +972 (0) 76-599-0000
Pakistan +92 (0) 21 37130615
Japan +81 (0) 3-5050-5053
Chile +56 (0) 44 890 9157
Norway +47 56 90 10 20
France +33 (0) 7 55 50 01 94
Ukraine +380 (0) 89 323 9906
Argentina +54 (0) 11 5219-4138
Austria +43 (0) 1 2650500
Spain +34 931 98 23 72
Latvia +371 67 881 162
Mexico +52 (01) 899 274 4042
Dominican Republic (829) 999-2525
Bulgaria +359 (0) 2 437 2540
Italy +39 350 564 9030
Canada (605) 562-3107
Ireland +353 (0) 90 646 4151
Estonia +372 614 8043
Costa Rica +506 4000 3872
Vietnam +84 (0) 4 7108 0085

http://violenceanonymous.org

NYU Center For Violence and Recovery – Intimate Abuse Symposium

Previously posted on Wednesday, November 18, 2009 by VA member

Kate and I attended this symposium last week in NYC. Linda Mills, director of the Center for Violence and Recovery and a big advocate of VA, invited us to speak and sit on a panel. The experience was very moving. Seeing Judges, Attorney Generals, Social Workers, Advocates from all over the US come together and discuss solutions to the social malady of the Power and Control Paradigm. It was an honor to be with them and to share how Violence Anonymous has transformed our lives.

http://www.nyu.edu/cvr/conference/

Odd Man Out

Previously posted by VA member on Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I had a bit of a blow-up on Sunday, with a best friend and my girlfriend. I’ve been getting the sense that the last three times we’ve been hanging out (and working with the homeopathy stuff) it always ends up being the two of them who tease me and pick on me. After noticing this and starting to be uncomfortable with it after a couple of times, I decided to finally say something. I said very nicely and correctly when I told them that I felt unhappy with the two of them playing off each other and basically “ganging up” against me and always teasing me, and that it was uncomfortable for me and too much for me. The answer that came back from both of them was more or less that it was just me, that they weren’t doing anything, and that I just had to look within myself for the answer to that problem. I felt hurt and finally got pissed off because I didn’t at all feel like they had taken what I said seriously, and instead of trying to empathize and understand, they just simply sent it back to my address and told me it had nothing to do with them. Then my friend left, and my girlfriend ended up ignoring me. Even when I was pissed off I didn’t yell or scream, but I did shut down the situation through my anger, and so my friend left.

I tested myself afterwards with my biofeedback method, even while I was in the middle of this completely messed up emotional state, and I found a huge conflict called “wanting to explode, repressed anger”. I started taking these remedies, and the next day I went and got acupuncture, and this helped calm me down. But honestly I didn’t want to see or talk to either of them after that, and I haven’t seen my daughter since Sunday. I wrote a long message to my girlfriend, and pretty much the same one to my friend, explaining to them that 1. there are dynamics that happen in groups where people are excluded or picked on in one way or the other, even if these dynamics are not (necessarily) malicious or premeditated or even conscious; and 2. that even *if* it is a sensitivity that I have, if already I bring it up *nicely*, then I’d expect a partner and best friend to take it seriously and show some consideration. I also explained to them that it was important for me to be able to resolve this with them. I also apologized that I got pissed off and that this made things uncomfortable.

This situation brought up a very old hurt for me, which dates to when I was a child, which probably started already in my family (with my sister and mother and even my father), and which continued in school. I was often excluded and very specifically in 5th and 6th grade got picked on quite harschly. I was one of the smartest, which didn’t help, but it did mean that I got out of there after those two years, and didn’t have to stay in that kindergarden of a class. Anyway, this topic got reactivated for me, which is all the better, since now I can work out this old hurt and trauma as well. It also explains why I also continue to get very pissed off when my girlfriend is insensitive to me (I’m feeling relatively grumpy at the moment anyway).

I immediately started doing some research on the web, and found some interesting pdf articles on “mobbing”, something which is well-known in Europe. It’s extremely insidious and very hard to deal with, but it happens exactly in situations when the ones with more power pick on someone with less power, and a group of people gang up on a single individual, and finally it takes on its own dynamic. This research also confirmed for me that I was the victim of such mobbing when I was a child, and that this was extremely hurtful and destructive for me, and something that I’ve continued to carry with me, causing me to be antisocial in a general sort of way (and therefore also continuing the spiral of exclusion and mobbing which I experience). However, I feel that apart from getting pissed off in the end, I didn’t play the victim in the situation, but decided to bring it up and say something about it, while remaining correct.

My friend recontacted me about ten days later, but basically explained to me that he disagreed with what I had written and that even though he thinks “that I’m someone who tries”, he can’t really do anything with all that. The call didn’t end so well and so far we haven’t been back in touch. It seems that our friendship, at least for the moment, is over. This is too bad, since he is someone I counted on as a close friend for a long time. It’s worth mentioning that he was having a relatively tough time that day he came over, and that based on what he had said that day and also on the phone call afterwards, that he also seems to have a problem letting go of grudges – he drudged up something from a few years ago, which I had thought that we had resolved together.

My girlfriend wrote already that first evening that in thinking back on the afternoon, she could understand why I would end up feeling uncomfortable and hurt. She apologized and empathized, and said she was sorry for her part of all the teasing. She ended up showing me that she was on *my* side, something that I was grateful for. Considering when my friend started to tease me, my girlfriend jumped on the bandwagon, I’m glad that she finally got the point, and hopefully won’t do this anymore.

My experience is always that when I say *NO* to something that I don’t like, I end up being punished by being excluded or picked on even more. Interestingly enough, the solution to this “conflict” which I tested on myself, is to find creative ways of saying no and expressing anger and setting limits, and that it’s possible to say no *without* ending up alone and being excluded. So although the situation ended up being a bit of a drama and emotionally quite traumatic, on the level of being able to resolve something from the past and bringing it back into the present, it was very useful.

And finally, I think no one likes being teased always by the same two people when it’s a group of three. So in a way this is also a normal and ok that I finally said something. Too bad it turned into a drama and my friend left like that, hopefully next time it won’t have to happen like this, and I’ll find a way to say something *without* excluding myself.

My wife called the sheriff on me

previously posted on Thursday, May 21, 2009

Yesterday, while trying to create a plan with my wife on how we can get her to treatment for PTSD she triggered and convinced herself… honestly I’m not sure what she convinced herself of, but it appeared that in her mind I became the abuser and she thought she was being controlled in some way. For one of the first times in my recovery, I can actually say that I was not behaving in a controlling fashion. I definitely feel a sense of urgency, since she has been ill for a year now and is getting worse, in my opinion, by the day. At any rate, at my suggestion that maybe she wait to sell her horses after she returned from 30 days with professional help, she triggered and was unreachable. Nothing that fell from her lips was rational at that point and our conversation as two adults working together was derailed.

I took a time out, letting her know that I would return in 5 minutes to, hopefully, continue our conversation. After 5 minutes, I returned, but she was still swimming in a sea of victimhood and I was helpless to help her back to the land of sane thinking. I gathered my things to move back into a friend’s house to give her some space to get her head straight and took some time with my son to try to explain what was going on and when I would return for him. He assured me that he was ok staying with mommy but cried that I had to leave. As I pulled out of the drive, I was stopped by a deputy sheriff who demanded I stay and explain what was going on.

The beautiful thing about it was that I actually had no fear of the deputy or the situation, knowing that I had used the tools of VA to stay cool and calm. In the past I would have been shitting myself, knowing that I had actually laid a hand on her or screamed and shouted horrible things at her. This time thanks to VA, none of that had happened. It was embarrassing, since the cleaner was there and I had to call a client and cancel an appointment while the deputy cleared me to go. I took the time to play with my son and did my best not to give him the impression that anything was wrong. Thanks VA.

Benny