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Old 07-18-2012, 12:08 AM   #43
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Gene, I like your responses... thoughtful and mature and full of tolerance and good humor.

I'm afraid it's true, the apple hangs on the tree long enough it finally gets ripe and sweet. But the ripe sweet apple is the one in danger of falling from the tree. Carpe Diem baby!


Talking about people who get stuck strikes a BIG chord with me:

It always used to infuriate me to see the children of alcoholics start drinking as teenagers, or children who have been beaten turn around and start slapping their tiny helpless children. I could never figure out how they could stand to do that. But the truth is simple: They never learned how to do anything ELSE. Your home is a 24/7 classroom, good, bad or indifferent.

Of course, it always worried me because my mother was hyper-critical and OCD, and my dad was schizophrenic - eventually institutionalized. I wondered if I wasn't doomed, but I was observant enough to realize that on an average city block I could find 3 other homes that made mine look almost normal by comparison.

I was logical(or just lucky) enough to figure out that getting pregnant and/or married at 16 was an attractive escape - that would end in disaster. I also vaguely recognized that getting "fixed" would have to come from within, though academic accomplishment, career advancement, and making money don't hurt when it came to developing some self-confidence. They also don't substitute for inner peace.

As a young adult, I did find a professional who gave me some some serious coaching rather than just laying out the psycho-babble. If you can learn to golf (a hideously difficult task) you can learn how to stand your ground calmly and with respect, how disagree without screaming, how to confront small problems and resolve them before they become major, and how know the difference between the deal breakers and the small stuff. Let the little stuff GO (that one still takes lotsa practice!)

I think most people get "stuck" with unsuccessful coping methods because early on they learn to HIDE their problems. And hiding halfway works. They want to look normal so that they can escape into normal. Unfortunately they almost always do that by hooking up with a "strong character" who'se cast in the role of Prince or Princess Charming. But the rescuer? Eventually he/she wants you to actually BE rescued and BE a fully functional adult. Saying "start acting like an adult" is like asking someone with no computer background to build a computer from the motherboard.

I confess I actually like Dr. Phil's way of stating things. It's so OBVIOUS, once you hear it said a couple of times. Here are a few of my favorites:

You don't have to be perfect for me to be OK. (How to not be crushed by criticism - how not to take it all personally.) Hyper critical people don't have to stop criticising you - you CAN realize they've got verbal diarrhea and cannot control their mouths. Normal people change NASTY diapers all the time, without drama, barely acknowledging that it's even a chore. Someone who puts you down? Just another nasty diaper to dismiss and quietly put in the trash.

If you've been doing (beating your kid, enabling your drunk brother, whatever) for 17 years and it still isn't working, why do you keep doing it? Persistence is only a virtue when progress toward a goal is being made. If nothing is changing or a situation is getting worse, accept HELP and realize that you don't have all the answers.

It's your job to step up and be a leader in your family, your kids would rather be FROM a broken home than IN one. (If you want the privileges of adulthood you've got to ACT like an adult when things are at their worst. Being pathetic and helpless or just drifting is NOT acceptable for a grownup - and they're pretty darned unattractive by the time you're out of your teen years!


Anyway - thanks for a though provoking thread.

Paula
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Old 07-18-2012, 10:37 AM   #44
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Paula, thanks for the compliment. Your post is very good. What is hard for anyone to realize is that what we are taught by our parents, often nonverbally, when we are very, very young and unable to understand what is happening, gets ingrained in our subconscious and cause us to act stupidly when we are "grown up". Changing this is difficult and often requires help from others—therapists. Otherwise you may just substitute one neurosis for another (the subconscious is very powerful and clever—it works hard to keep you nutty). Willpower only goes so far.

Like your experience, I had hypercritical parents, but fortunately my father taught me how to think and I figured out I was living in a crazy house, though from the outside it looked like a normal upper middle class family. I felt like I was blamed for everything and like you, wanted to leave, but where is a 15 year old going to go? I lived 3 blocks from the subway and could go to the other end of NYC, but what then? Leaving for college was what I waited for and never came back, keeping them at arms length. I was eventually able to forgive them since they had been taught the same stuff by their parents. It wasn't easy reconciling with them, but I did it because, after all, they were my parents. And the changes I made in myself allowed me to be ready for the wonderful woman I met 26 years ago.

When this thread started, the information was generating silliness, which I love, but I decided it was going no where fast and decided to get serious, so the discussion continues. The tests tell us something, not enough, but help, maybe only a little, in understanding the human condition. Some women are smarter than some men and vice versa. The statistics are averages drawn from bad tests and well within any margin of error.

Gene
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Old 07-18-2012, 10:57 AM   #45
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Yah! But, I'm watching the food network now along with figure skating and tennis. What does that mean? Am I showing my "more feminine side"?
I do still take out the trash. Never have been a big football fan. Why spend 3+ hours watching when you can watch the last 2 minutes and know how it ends. I must admit, it is more interesting than baseball.
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Old 07-18-2012, 11:16 AM   #46
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Am I showing my "more feminine side"?
I do still take out the trash.
Only if you're watching because you WANT to, and not because that's the only channel that has good reception, or because you lost the battle for the remote. If you're watching figure skating because of circumstances beyond your control, you're showing some very manly perserverance instead.
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Old 07-18-2012, 11:52 AM   #47
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I watch figure skating so I can see Kristi Yamaguchi in a sexy little miniskirt.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:05 PM   #48
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Yah! But, I'm watching the food network now along with figure skating and tennis. What does that mean? Am I showing my "more feminine side"?
I do still take out the trash. Never have been a big football fan. Why spend 3+ hours watching when you can watch the last 2 minutes and know how it ends. I must admit, it is more interesting than baseball.

You're a manly man until you want to have your bikini line waxed!
.... and if you ever DO have that done, you'll never try to convince anyone that men have a higher tolerance for pain than women! I've seen a guy throw up after having his unibrow waxed.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:24 PM   #49
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I've never understood guys who have their chests waxed. It's not the pain—although I don't get why anyone voluntarily subject themselves to that—but is it some cleanliness obsession? Hair is good.

People have different ideas about what is attractive and a lot are convinced they are not. I've read that cosmetics used by wealthy women hundreds of years ago were extremely toxic and eventually ruined their skin, but they did it anyway. Today there is concern about the chemicals used for permanents, but it goes on. High heels are bad for your feet and your back, but women wear them.

Gene
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Old 07-18-2012, 05:00 PM   #50
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I've never understood guys who have their chests waxed. It's not the pain—although I don't get why anyone voluntarily subject themselves to that—but is it some cleanliness obsession? Hair is good.

Gene
Unless it is growing out of your nose and ears. Or so I have been told by my intellectually superior other half.
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Old 07-18-2012, 05:07 PM   #51
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I watch figure skating so I can see Kristi Yamaguchi in a sexy little miniskirt.
Then you are a manly man indeed, and smart.
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Old 07-18-2012, 05:20 PM   #52
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Phrunes:

So you won't have to watch the Olympics anymore:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...D2jBxa44jaMM6g

I don't think she is competing anymore anyway.

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Old 07-18-2012, 06:29 PM   #53
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Phrunes:

So you won't have to watch the Olympics anymore:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...D2jBxa44jaMM6g

I don't think she is competing anymore anyway.

Gene
Gene,
Thank you! Id better get the Tivo burnin some of these youtube vids just to keep me going well into my golden years. Hahahaha Hmmm...that will create an interesting dillema for me...do I use that outlet for my ventilator, or my Tivo and flatscreen? To do both, should I upgrade to 50amp service in the old Argy?
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:48 PM   #54
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Phrunes, I suggest 50 amp and you can watch women's volleyball. They play in bikinis. You may need more oxygen then.

Gene
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:54 PM   #55
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Will someone please tell the intelligent multi-tasking lady at the front of the line.....the light has turned green. Lord, wish I had a dime for each time it happens.
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:57 PM   #56
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Oh she's just waiting to make sure some guy isn't going to run the red and T Bone her. If she's blonde she may be trying to figure out what makes the car move.
That's one for both sides.
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