Tag Archives: therapy

Psychological Incest: Living with “Little Man”!

I was having a conversation with a friend about relationships. We were talking about the stereotypical “little man” or “bad boy” situations many woman find theirselves in. These often co dependent relationships leave many woman confused and hurt seemingly never being able to do enough, or the right thing.
On the surface you think, “why doesn’t this person wake up and find a man, instead of chasing after boys, or dudes acting like men?” It’s obviously way more complicated than that.
“Little man” in many cases has been manipulating women since birth. The absence of a male figure leaves them psychologically stunted in relationships when they’re older. Their experience tells them they act out, the woman responds with guilt or anger, then she makes excuses for his behavior to make him feel better. This rubric may have been in place for 18 years and your daughter may be the unlucky woman to encounter this guy.
She’ll spend most of her time sacrificing her own needs to create peace within the house. When he acts out because he wants a motorcycle, or a bag of weed, she’ll sacrifice getting her new outfit, cause he tries hard, but just can’t catch a break. She may lie to herself to the point it’s embarrassing and awkward to keep the hope that it will all turn out in the end.
This is the dangerous place for her and the advantage he will take. He’s already learnt from Momma to keep their business in the house. So she distances herself from friends and becomes reclusive because it’s too embarrassing to have people see life ain’t quite working out the way she planned. He gains more influence over her perspective because he’s the only one she can talk to without accepting she is ina failed relationship. Now she’s stuck.
At first she has unrealistic expectations and you cannot say anything without becoming the enemy. She will defend the person who is psychologically abusing her to protect her dream, or hope. Meanwhile things become more turbulent in the home.
By the time he has recreated his childhood in his new house norms have become dysfunctional. She may feel like she is the mother one minute and the spouse the next. This “psychological incest” he is perpetrating solidified his role as the man and the child in the home and she learns to adapt to which person she is dealing with.
When money is tight or kids act up he’s the child who needs space or quite. He may need dinner or a drink he has worked to hard to fix. When the check rolls in he’s the man who has the plan to come up. He’s gonna pay to get her hair done or take the kids to Chucky Cheese.
The set up is; half way through the week when he doesn’t have money for lunch and has to make his lunch he’s the victim. Maybe he can’t afford beer or weed till payday, but he works so hard, he deserves to kick back and get a buzz. Now he’s suffering for her and she better respond with sacrificing her needs for him. Eventually the entire house revolves around his needs because he’s manipulated everyone into thinking he is the center of the household, like when he was younger with Momma.
“Little man or “bad boy” are portrayed too positively in our culture. I’m raising another little girl and I think real hard about the mistakes I’ve made and how I can do better for her. First off, I ain’t raising a victim or a wife. I’m hoping my daughters find men who are their friends and that they keep each other as priorities. I hope they can call each other out and be more empathetic, than sympathetic to each other. Of course we all want our kids to have lives filled with challenges they conquer, but raising “little man” or “bad boy” is on my list of “no no’s”. I can’t control who they marry or date, but I can make them aware so they know that I know it’s a choice they’re making. We won’t lie to each other.
They’re are hundreds, if not thousands, of characters in the relationship game. Family, friends, and co workers are just a few. I focused on “little man” and “bad boy” because of how prevalent they are in our society and cultures. He travels across race, ethnicity, and culture creating havoc and leaving families in turmoil for his own gratification. I hope my daughters stay clear of this minefield and writing this was my first step in preventing them from trying to raise “Momma’s Boy”!

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Angela

I’ll write till I die with a pen in my frozen fingers and never find the words to express how anguish pales in comparison for how I feel about missing your childhood.

It’s past sad into a realm where violence is emotion, not an action. I feel the lighting strike my soul at what we lost on my account. I’ve spent years thinking and erasing the futility of my pain, it’s selfish, but hopelessly true.

I have no right to your sadness or forgiveness. I fell aimlessly grasping at what could have been while I free fell through memories only I share. On the other side of the veil I screamed at smoke figures of impossibility.

I’ll always be stuck in that space with your memory. The images are no longer important, the feelings are what haunts me. Indiscriminately they strike like streaks of lighting across the ocean between us, and I wonder if you see, or even look anymore.

I know it’s just selfish pain looking for broken souls in the darkness of past storms. I know you’ve tasted the sunshine of life and I watch now from afar as you soar through darkness and light seeing sunshine and moonlight with the same joy; and then I wonder if your journey ever really included me. Maybe I was just part of the scenery along your path to a higher journey.

It’s here I understand the age old adage, “if you set something free…..”. You may never return, and if that path is too dark, I’ll continue to look for you in the light of day and night knowing I once held the most precious thing in the world, my child, and now she is free!

Echoes, Shadows, and Words

Words create shadows of meaning that echo through our soul
So what is unspoken suffocates
Our thoughts exacting their toll

Sentiments hang in the balance like branches in mid winter
Cracked and clattering gray like old bones that dry and splinter

Are words felt better than said, like a winters breeze
Or heard without a listeners ear with burdens to ease

Like screaming in the wind at dusty crossroads
The crow sits stolid on wires of irony with eyes that forebode

Can you really hear me in all my seasons and glory
Or do you listen with your beliefs creating your own story

I’m not you to create like summer sand castles in the sun
Spending hours dreading shadows and the tides that run

I’m constant like the mirage between you and the horizon
Melding into mountains and asphalt giving you pause to question

I see your intention like hail raining down on a crystal lake
Your words glisten with an edge that cuts for your sake.

But from here I walk alone through forests and time
No worries or words for a world with no rhythm or rhyme

I leave you behind just beyond the echo of my footsteps
Leaving clouds of dust where tears fell in earnest.

Curse of the Babbling Friend

Sometimes I never find the right words. Stolid seems to wooden, stalwart to posthumous, nothing really fits. I ramble on through cob webbed memories of vocabulary searching for the thought that clears my mind, all in vain.

I know all the cliche’s about “blank slates” and canvasses; but good friends deserve better. I struggle intermittently with “the right thought” to convey something much bigger than you would require. Like a dog with fleas I pause every now and then and go at it like there’s no tomorrow; and damned if there ain’t.

Handshakes are easy. The customary hug with the extra squeeze is comforting. For me though, it’s never enough. I don’t make excuses. Reasons are often selfish explanations, and factors just explain excuses. So in the end I guess words don’t matter as much as the effort.

It’s funny how a phone call can be a bridge to “the next time”. It’s never enough and sentiments are easy when you pretend someone is near. It’s “sweet” of you to make the effort. Then there’s the silent caveat that lingers like a speech bubble in a cartoon, if only I took the time when we were together.

Things left unsaid aren’t alway good, or bad either. Most of us have things we don’t say. The bubble is always there, but everyone’s left to just feel the thoughts, rather than hear the words. Our judgement is clouded by the unknown responses or our own demons.

There is a way to say anything, that seems to be a gift most folks don’t have. I suffer from not being able to write it or say it at times; or maybe even worse, say it or write it the wrong way. It’s that one word that says it all correctly that eludes me until after I say or write the wrong thing that haunts me.

This is why I write, how I care. I can edit what’s on my page. What I say is etched in time. One wrong word in the right moment can’t be edited without intense drama.

It’s not always that dramatic, but it is always that important to me. Sometimes it’s simple things like forgetting a phone call or visit. These situations beg for the right sentiment, but only leave me looking forgetful or uncaring, of which I’m neither.

It seems in hindsight the right words aren’t important between friends. The other speech bubbles I never see are the ones that say “I’m caring” because I tried. I have excuses because I care. I have reasons because I want you to know; and all the factors together mean I want you to understand that you’re important.

Maybe this is where writing and I fall short. It’s the words, the bubbles, and the actions together that satisfy our soul. Love is the only word that conveys this triad of affirmation.

For me the right “word” is important. I don’t expect to hear it or see it, but I strive to write, say, or demonstrate it. I’ve fell short more times than I care to remember. I’ve been speechless in words, actions, and thought. I’ve regretted not having the right words, and having the right words at the wrong time. I never regret trying.

So if I’m speechless know I’m caring enough to think. Silence is a word and an action that conveys concern. It’s when I’m at my best unfortunately. It’s not that I don’t care or you’re not important. It’s that you are worth the right word that not even bubbles and hugs can explain.

Voices

Entangled in an audible nightmare
Where my mind can’t see
Why my brain just stares.

Take my life, my limbs even
But leave my mind to me
And the sanity I’ve Been given.

Firm ground slithers
From under my thoughts
As the air withers.

And suddenly the noise is white
While trees smile and faces grow
Into a darkness void of night.

Unnoticed

I see it playing with their hair and laughter keeping time with the gentle breeze. I’m in awe they don’t feel the wind or hear the laughter, they just live. Why must I feel every gust.

Leaves cyclone around them, yet still they dance and sing to the whistles of air unnoticed. The earth is spinning its seasons on gales and thermal moments, and the world spins on around me. I seek shelter from something That goes unnoticed.

I gave into the illusion and embraced the sweeping motion of the unseen. I focus on the scent ignorant of the trap or where it came. I no longer acknowledge the world around me or the forces it succumbs. I’m absorbed by the feelings it creates.

I go through pains to justify this existence. My nightmares turned to excuses many seasons ago. Now my nightmare is the wind will have colors everyone will see. My hair no longer blows, dust swirls around my feet leaving debris scattered where my life once lived, and the pain and wind dance around my desires like vines within a fence.

It’s here I’m stuck, intertwined, unable to move. I can only observe life within the links that have bound me. The wind and pain are reminders of the twisted nature of a lie.

You see, the fence, the wind , the pain are all props for the landscape of desire. The elements of a justification for choking my own existence. The links that strangle my ability to move forward. Now I tell myself as many lies as I do everyone else.

There is a me that is free of needs. Within me it’s the weaker self , but she’s resilient. For every lie she tells, there’s a truth that’s sad.

Of the earth

Your words stretch across the plane of my existence echoing sentiments like sand or grit through an hourglass with no minutes.

Your parched beliefs leave your tongue swollen in your throat. You can’t speak intelligently choking on your dried up saliva dangling from cracked bleeding yellow lips. Your thoughts wheeze like a dying mans babble.

The sun beats down on your back like a molten hammer as the hot winds refuse to change. Perspiration turns to salt like snowflake as it flies from your hair swaying with exhaustion.

But you will never secede the ground that swallows you whole. Sucking the life out of you And everyone close to you. You’re in desperate need of a mirror to see the damage you’ve inflicted upon your soul, but you proudly worship the mirage that lucidly shimmers ahead of you, knowing the path ahead is futile.

I pray you’ll taste the bile and purge your soul of ignorance. You’re not a moth bound to a light that will kill you. Let go of the gaseous dreams that keep you walking towards death like its heaven on earth. Find the shade, drink from the fount, and rest your soul to nourish your mind.

Step away from the vast desert of waste, you’re not trash to be discarded, you’re human. Feelings are good. You’re the salt of the earth!