I realize it is only halloween and I am already thinking Thanksgiving thoughts. Getting out into the future consistently brings me down. And, off I go. My boys are enjoying plans with good wholesome family friends tonight and for that I am over the moon. For me Thanksgiving will happen in the home of my best friend. My boys are with their father this year for Thanksgiving and it would be silly to think they will go anywhere but with my sister and mother, with whom I have NO CONTACT. From the day we met ( my boys’ father and me) everything that was mine became ours and everything that was his remained exclusively his. My bank accounts, benefits, house, house downpayment, personal email, credit cards, friends, everything-shifted from mine to ours–and nobody forced me, it is what I learned, how to
sustain illusion of cohesion avoid banishment. Access to my resources continues to elevate his life exponentially. He genuinely cannot make the distinction between what is mine and not his. I see how his family culture enforces this and how it bonds him to my family of origin, with shared values and ethics– taking and giving exactly and only as they want–righteously. Naming and honoring healthy boundaries got me divorced first from my family, then from my ex-husband, again from my family. Not so shocking that they find unity of purpose in their shared brand of entitlement.
I guess I shall be grateful that he finds any sense of belonging at all. Without them, he has nobody. My older son said yesterday that he cannot wait until he is 18 and can say NO to being with them. I told him that he is allowed to say it now– to say “That feels bad to me.” He said he doesn’t like when his dad gets mad at him, and maybe if he goes to college in Montana or Alaska, then at least he will have an excuse for not being able to go there. I cannot begin to express how painful I find this—-that he has the need to people please and that to say NO directly, seems too costly. My younger son thinks, once certain people die, this will stop. My older son thinks coming of age and geographic distance are his only hope. These are the teachings of the awkward and highly unwholesome triangulation, foul, pretendy, arrangement in which my sons continually are used and submerged. PSA, bitchez: Their job is not to please others, but to discover the truth of who they are.
I am glad my sons and I discuss THIS openly, fearlessly. That they will hear, over and over, from me that– NO is a complete sentence. That we don’t have to agree to things that are bad for us to make another feel good. Fuck rape culture. This is how it starts- at home, being required to engage in faking and imposed closeness and tolerating physical proximity and intimacy with those whom you find repulsive or are just plain not comfortable with. And smiling about it!! Authenticity, boundaries and boundary respect are badass. Phoniness and boundary violation are just N.A.S.T.Y. bad…and assy. Shaking my head. I cannot stop it, but I can share about it and intentionally educate my boys on how to manage themselves in these unwholesome conditions and to not carry it out into their lives.
Apparently, this past weekend, their uncle, my sister’s mostly benevolent husband, whom they actually like, told them; “You know, it makes your aunt very unhappy when she does not get enough hugs from you.” Gagging. I am gagging over this, literally. What are you doing? Demanding demonstrations of physical affection is gross and damaging. Allowing people to touch you in ways you don’t like, as a child, is grooming you for some very bad shit. Forcing people to touch you is not ok, even if you are a judge or if you wear all white or if you are old. It is never ok. It is wrong all of the ways, for all of the days- even holidays. Always. No means no. Any continual message to put out on demand comes ONLY from people who are not mentally or spiritually well. It is okay to say NO. It is not mean or rude….and if it costs you certain people, those are not your people.
To my FOO and EX—Enjoy your forced family holidays, but please stop soul raping- my young boys, any young people. It is weird and desperate, very nasty. It is sick behavior. Find a wholesome way to meet your physical and emotional needs. Please. Get the help you need.
These are things I would say directly to my family and ex if they could hear anything above the sound of their own needs and sense of rightness and entitlement.
Mama Bear wants to tear your throat for this. The best I can do is to arm my children with the words and maneuvers to take full possession of themselves physically and emotionally. This cycle ends here. Be healthy. Respect boundaries, yours and others. Have courage little dudes. You have this 100%. You are mentally,spiritually, and emotionally stronger than THIS. I have faith that you will be strengthened by THIS and that you will grow into young men who do not force yourselves onto others or stand by while others endure boundary violation. There is no wholesome authority that asserts that boundary violation is acceptable or necessary. Though there will be those with status and authority who will use their position to do just that. You will recognize them and you will know in your bones, how to proceed.
AND–while it may all be explained, there is no wholesome justification for this behavior. NONE.Much Love,
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