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    still coping...anyone relate?
    DmndLife1984 posted:
    About a decade ago I told my father he'd not be seeing me again. That was around this time of year. He got self-righteous but I haven't looked back.

    After I'd tried to kill myself months before then, he was hundreds of miles away during my long recovery in the hospital. I did hear from him, but through his lawyer, about an unrelated matter, where he no longer wanted to pay money that he owed for my education. Maybe you won't be surprised, but when I got out of the hospital, I was looking forward to seeing him the way I usually did that time of year.

    I was unemployed at the time, but he had me pay my own way (I can't remember how I did it) to travel those hundreds of miles to see him, where my stepmother was waiting to tell me she didn't think I'd really been ready to kill myself. After leaving that visit I did try once more, several months later, after which I told him we were parting ways.

    I once had a dream that my stepmother resembled porn star Shy Luv, about as far from her as you can get, but funnily enough she wasn't even acting sexually in the dream, she was just a much nicer person. She and my father spent years teaching me, and I wasn't the only one, why I shouldn't expect anyone to like me, but I can tell you for sure that what they've been doing all this time is sitting at their dinner table, without friends, talking about how everyone else is worse than they are.

    Even with people they did call friends, they rarely had anything to say behind their backs that wasn't completely condescending, especially that none of them had made anything of their lives. I liked those friends of theirs the most, and having drinks with their cousin Gloria from time to time, whom they couldn't say had made nothing of her life because she was Gloria Estefan, and I wish I could've seen more of her, but I had to get and stay the hell out of my father and stepmother's sphere of influence.

    This is starting to feel like a very difficult time of year for me, but anyone with any kind of sense does get himself out of an abusive situation like that as long ago as I did, so it's at least one point I can give myself, and maybe you can give yourself.
    Sorry, forgot my pen.
    Lefty2121 responded:
    First and foremost I am glad you are still around today! The holidays are a difficult time for most people for various reasons. I hope that you are surrounded by loving and trusting friends that care and want the best for you! Please keep me posted on how you are doing and feeling.

    Take care,

    Rita aka Lefty
    DmndLife1984 replied to Lefty2121's response:
    I'm surrounded by much more supportive people these days, I've made sure of it, thank you. I know there's more I need to do in life in order to get away from how badly these past experiences affect me.
    Sorry, forgot my pen.
    Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to DmndLife1984's response:
    I'm so sorry to hear about your troubles, but heartened to hear that you surround yourself by more supportive people now. I hope you are- and will- continue to spend time with them during this holiday season. When people feel down or pulled down by a past they can't seem to leave behind, it can help to give extra focus on the positives in your life now - e.g. the good people, fulfilling activities, dreams that you are working toward. You might even want to write them down to help you focus on them and make them feel more real. And, of course, please continue to reach out here.
    rohvannyn responded:
    I respect your decision to leave those toxic influences behind. So many people stick with people who hurt them out of fear of being alone, or out of misguided feelings of loyalty. I, even as a relative stranger, am very glad you had the strength to leave, and the strength to continue reaching out to others.

    'Your focus determines your reality.' --QGJ

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