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I had a constellation done this weekend around the school. The experience was disappointing at first, and felt somehow incomplete, as if I had wrecked it by shutting down my feelings. I wanted to have it done, but I could not show up with all my feelings to be healed.

What it ended up being was an illustration of how all the individuals and entities involved could offer nothing to me in terms of the reconciliation I seek and have sought so deeply for so many years. There were representatives for the school, the teacher, my inner child, the police, and my parents, and all hands were tied. “Sorry, we can’t do anything; go deal with it by yourself, and have a nice life. Only you can love yourself.”

And so this was the constellation that happened for me as I withheld — no, I shut down — my feelings. I went into shut down (in retrospect) because I’m ashamed of my feelings, ashamed of even my desire for reconciliation. I still doubt whether or not my feelings are justified enough to exist because everyone in the story’s “hands are tied”, so no action was taken. No action was taken, telling me that neither my perceptions nor my feelings can be trusted. I — my feelings and my perceptions — am all wrong, and not worthy of love or support or action on anyone’s part.

So it is circumstance that abandoned me, more than any one heart. So who is there to atone for this loss and injustice, this exclusion, secret, banishment, dismissal.

Such a feeling of abandonment and the need for protection. Aloneness. World-unfriendly-ness. No support. No validation. Chronically needy, wanting to be seen, causes me to act like a child, doing childish things for attention.

The other internal pattern that came out of this for me is one of doubting myself, dismissing myself, wondering eternally if my feelings are real or justified.

This confusion, this neediness, keep me in my cage. The cycle of shame that goes on and on and on, around and around and around.

So I withheld both the story and my feelings for fear that they are not real, made up, coming from an impure place; and in so doing, I wasted the moment of healing.

When I block my feelings, I block their healing.

I do this uncontrollably, over and over again. I betray and abandon myself — and others — uncontrollably, by shutting down and failing to be present to the moment.

I also feel ashamed of my feelings because I’ve done so much therapeutic work and sharing on this issue that I’m embarrassed I haven’t healed it yet. That I need to share it again, spend more time and energy on it, take more from others on it.

So then I shut down again, so then I waste the moment, and everyone’s time again. So then I feel ashamed again.

The guilt, shame, despair and hoplessness get worse every time this happens.

The agony of being trapped inside myself.


I think this is a pretty good article. Now I just need the courage to post it publicly to all my friends, which still feels risky and tabu, so I am posting it here, as my anonymous identity of innerlight, to all my anonymous friends who read this blog.

The information is half the battle. Creating a safe context with which to discuss these things publicly is perhaps the second half.

Article on what to do if you think someone you know is considering suicide:


“The greatest burden a child must bear is the unlived life of the parents.”  – Carl Jung

as we were hugging goodnight last night, my mom said, “Well, another one’s over.” it was one of the saddest things anyone has ever said to me. my heart still feels heavy. i feel a lifetime (or two) of sadness.

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a family constellations snippet

I will write more on this at some point. There is just so much happening for me right now that I can’t possibly write about it all and do it justice, so here is another snippet:

'Circle of Friends' by Michael Diven

‘Circle of Friends’ by Michael Diven

I had an amazing day of family constellations on Sunday, and believe that things are already in motion as a result from the constellation I did.

The representative for my Mother kept looking away and up, and saying “Lord almighty!”(my Mother actually does roll her eyes A LOT and exclaim, “Oh, Good Lord!”)

Last night, I had an amazing conversation with Mom — about when it was that her feeling of not fitting in began for her as a girl, how it evolved, how she was a ‘clinger’ and a ‘follower’ through most of grade school and early adulthood; how people always seemed to forget about her and leave her behind (this is her chronic experience in life); and how she has decided that she doesn’t want to fit in anyway and she is happy that way. She expressed the view that needing to fit in is codependent, and I disagreed. It was one of the most important and hard-won disagreements I’ve ever made :). This is the core belief my therapy has centred around for the last several weeks. This is the belief in me that must change so that i am not alone for the rest of my life. I need to stop feeling so different and unique all the time and start feeling like a valid member of society, not in a codependent way, but in the way that we all need and deserve to feel connected, supported, and contributing. I disagree with my Mother that this is a codependent need.

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mending attunement, standing fully in my place

elephants in a row

elephants in a row

Another shoe drops this evening, watching the TV Series Parenthood – a family drama / comedy along similar tastes as Six Feet Under, but a little less dark and twisted.

The show follows several families within a family – dynamics, transitions, realizations of all the diverse family members. In this episode, a 20-something engages in a romance with her boss, in an assistant position created for her by her Aunt, who catches her in her neglege in the hotel room. One is left to presume that the Aunt heard her niece was going on this business trip alone with this older man, had a hunch that something was up, and flew out to rescue her. In the same episode, a teenage boy is uncontrollably upset when he finds out that his mom is planning to have a baby with his step-father. His Mom talks about it with the step-father, and he decides to take the boy out for a burger; later on, the Mom talks to the boy’s father about it, because the boy is unable to articulate his feelings very well with his Mom.

psychotherapy image

psychotherapy image

The thing that struck me was a sadness in me for the fact that I did not grow up in a family like that. I never felt like other family members understood what I was feeling and took loving, supportive action. What it comes down to is that I always felt alone in dealing with what I was feeling – no one knew, and the few times they did, they didn’t respond in a way that spoke understanding, compassion or support to me.

What then struck me is that I have just finally had this experience this weekend, while liquidating my storage unit, back in the place I lived for 8 years before my melt down in the Spring. It was a new experience for me to reach out in the way that I did and ask for what I needed. No, in advance of my speaking up, no one really had the where-with-all to realize the anxiety I felt about going. I had extreme anxiety in the form of raised heart beat and panic attacks in the middle of the night for several weeks leading up to my trip, and in retrospect, the root of that anxiety was the notion that I was going to have to face all my old stuff up there alone, and that my tired brain was simply unable to handle all the details. That I was going to have to cover up the panic inside again, pretend like everything was fine and somehow get it all done without letting the stress show.

That’s what I did for most of my life. I was an ice burg, in quiet, frozen desperation, so well automatically hidden, I cannot blame myself for seeing no hope. It took a natural disaster from the universe to melt.

My friends this weekend showed me the kind of love in this episode of Parenthood – the kind of love I always wanted, and thought that I just didn’t deserve. I thought that I didn’t deserve it because what I was feeling was grotesque and unacceptable, that there was something horribly wrong with me. If I was normal, I wouldn’t have to hide so much, and people wouldn’t leave me alone so much.

The kind of damage I sustained in my childhood is not overtly even close to so many other stories of abuse. The sources of dysfunction in myself are far more subtle, every single one of them. I illustrate the reason that not everyone who is diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder was abused , in the typical sense of the word, in their childhoods. I have lived with chronic confusion about how I really am in the world, because I have been so confused about where I have come from – did I come from abuse, or am I being a drama queen? Do I have feelings and reactions that are not normal, or am I only choosing to see it that way? This was the endless loop of confusion I lived in. The definition of cause for BPD by Tami Green opened the door to a lot of clarity for me: A sensitive child who does not receive the extra attention and validation he or she needs in order to develop secure attachment. I am back to my previous post about how abuse is a completely subjective experience.

I’m appreciating the perspective and understanding in myself about the pressure I felt to be a sensation, without the social and emotional supports so many take for granted. Add perfectionism, sensory and emotional intensity to that, and you have a pretty good recipe for the disaster that was my life.

Another wave of grieving, compassion, mending, loving. A particle of light in some deep reserve in me.

Source Image: Tribe Jewelry by Gayle Mahoney

Source Image: Tribe Jewelry by Gayle Mahoney

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+HAZARDOUS WASTE DISPOSAL from Alchemy at Stop the Storm

This is fu***g brilliant:

(strong trigger potential)

What are the negative messages you received as a child that became core beliefs? (listing positive aspects of yourself is a good counter measure / practice of balance, and the word “disposal” is THE operative word here)


With big love from Underground.