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What everyone said. ESpecially on the therapy/writing a letter not to be sent thing -sometimes just verbalising things to an outward source (therapist, friend, hypothetical recipient) helps put order in our thoughts. When I've written letters I'm not oging to send, I find myself being far more specific than when I do that in my own head. Sometimes I find myself writing whatever I wanted to say and suddenly stop and realise that's actually not it, and delete whole paragraphs and start new different ideas. So that can help, if it's osmething you're confortable doing.

Also, huge, big, supertight hugs.


 
Posts: 11802 | Location: home? | Registered: June 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Mr. Chadtastic:
The only thing I could say out of this is, life's too short. If you feel even a hint that you might be missing an opportunity here, at least even for your own healing, go for it. Don't leave any cards on the table or live with a possible regret of something left undone.
Y'know, just grasping a bit here, haven't really thought about it, but I think maybe this is part of what scares the hell out of me. It seems like A Moment, y'know? A Moment In Life where what I decide can change fate, choosing this thread and not that. It goes all the way from don't tell him anything about my life, just forgive him, reject him and move on; to saying, yeah, I know I'm your son (though you're not my father any more) and wouldn't it be ok to write letters, to meet, to talk before we move on. I suppose technically there's letting him back into my life, but that is NOT one of the options here.

In the past, I've imagined us meeting, me finding him and going to Arizona, meeting him for coffee at a diner, eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner there while we talk. Me telling him that I succeeded despite him, that I've got a wife and a kid and a happy marriage despite him, and that my mom is good despite him. But I've grown a lot since those imaginings, and when I think about it now, it's just not me. I don't hold that resentment or anger any more, simply because I *DID* succeed, I'm in a good place, so why be angry.

I think it's because I'm not angry, that I can't simply rip into him, tell him to go to hell and never contact me again, that makes this difficult. Also being a dad, completely empathizing with what it must be like to lose your only child, find them 25 years later, and try to reconnect. And knowing there's nothing there for me, knowing I'm going to reject him, that he isn't going to get what he hopes out of this courageous act of writing me, it makes me sad for him.

He looks old in the pictures he sent me. He sent me recent pictures of him and his mom, of him and his girlfriend (to be married next year?). It's hard to imagine breaking the heart of an old man like I'm going to.


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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How about a letter saying you're pleased to hear he's doing okay and that he has someone special in his life.

That you're doing well too (mention good job/wife/kid as appropriate and as much as you want to share).

That you're sorry but you don't think you can give him what he wants from you going forward so although you're pleased to hear from him you don't think any further contact is going to be helpful to you so you wish him well in his future but won't be in contact again.

Perhaps send you love to your grandma?

That way you are giving him contact but not hope and hopefully he should be able to take that and walk away knowing you are well but although you're not going to contact him any more you haven't fully 'rejected' him.


~
I prefer to live in a country that's small, and old, and where no one would ever have the NERVE to wear a cape in public, whether they could leap tall buildings in a single bound or not.

the parrot... ...gets tiresome.
the parrot... ...i ate him.


CHIKKINZ?
 
Posts: 20595 | Location: England | Registered: June 21, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Perhaps send you love to your grandma?

I'm only picking on this because it made me laugh. I don't know her at all. I think I *might* remember her first name, I have zero memories of her, not a single one. *pause* Wow, not one. I'm trying, but I can't come up a single one. What a weird thing! Smile


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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given how early your father wasn't in your life for i'm not surprised, but this is why i picked this up, I actually feel sorrier for her not knowing her gradson/great grandchild than him.


~
I prefer to live in a country that's small, and old, and where no one would ever have the NERVE to wear a cape in public, whether they could leap tall buildings in a single bound or not.

the parrot... ...gets tiresome.
the parrot... ...i ate him.


CHIKKINZ?
 
Posts: 20595 | Location: England | Registered: June 21, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Also being a dad, completely empathizing with what it must be like to lose your only child, find them 25 years later, and try to reconnect. And knowing there's nothing there for me, knowing I'm going to reject him, that he isn't going to get what he hopes out of this courageous act of writing me, it makes me sad for him.

He looks old in the pictures he sent me. He sent me recent pictures of him and his mom, of him and his girlfriend (to be married next year?). It's hard to imagine breaking the heart of an old man like I'm going to.


*hugs* You are an incredibly kind person,and I am sure you'll deal with him from that, but you aren't responsible for his feelings. His wants/expectations are his- and I'm sure he's looking back from this stage in life with some regret.


______________________
Fandangling across the moony sky,
went the Beezee bold as brass,
side-saddle she sat, on a big painted bat,
shooting moonbeams out of her a(censored)e.
~Joe
________________________
Isn't sanity really just a one trick pony, anyway? I mean, all you get is one trick, rational thinking! But when you're good and crazy¦ooh ooh ooh the sky's the limit!



 
Posts: 24392 | Location: With my weird little family | Registered: March 24, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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His wants/expectations are his

You're not the first to say this. And I know this. I also keep forgetting this.

All of you, all of this, have been very helpful and I'm very VERY appreciative of you all. Thank you.

Rae heads to Chicago/DC in a week, and M goes off with her grandparents. Then maybe I'll find it in me to write that letter. Stay tuned Smile And keep on with any thoughts, as I said, they're much appreciated.


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You know what's frustrating? How much of this situation occupies my subconscious, my back burner. I have a really good back burner. It does great on work stuff, and on parenting stuff. And then this situation rears up again, and fills all my back burner RAM, so that everything else gets kicked out and I can't focus on work, I forget shit at home, I get snappy and irritable with My Girls. I. Hate. It. And today, even after a great Father's Day weekend full of fun stuff, I'm jittery and thinking all sorts of weird shit thoughts and can't concentrate because my brain is starting to receive little bits and bobs from my back burner while I'm trying to work. Yet another reason to get this letter written. Rae leaves Wednesday, M goes to my folks Saturday, then maybe I'll have a go.


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
lives deliberately
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*drops a few more hugs in the thread*


ego forceps ergo ego forceps


****
"Chives?"�
"Yes, m'lud?"�
"Is that Ms Ephemera hovering over the croquet lawn?"�
"Indeed m'lud. She's marshalled all the haggle-dans. Missy-twigs and vale-nymphs from Claypole Woods. Apparently she intends to tear this house down and dance on the ruins."�
"Well, Chives, you'd better start the car, what? And pack my tennis things too"�
--- Joe 3Heads
 
Posts: 11426 | Location: In a perpetual state of Ohio | Registered: December 02, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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*HUGS JP*

I know this is a really hard thing and you need to do what is best for you. I tend to agree that at least writing back to say "Thanks, but no thanks. Have a nice life" is probably what he's going to expect after nine months of no answer.

I'm having a similar dilemma with my half-sister whom recently sent me a letter in the mail. I have her on facebook, but she's blocked from seeing/commenting on anything. She has never been a part of my life and given the abusiveness of my father (particularly in his first marriage, he'd mellowed a lot by the time I came along), she despises him. Now with all that's been happening she actually wrote to say she's sorry she can't help, but here's why. And the same thing, she wants to 'ease into a relationship, after all we are blood'.

Thing is, I knew most of that already. I just have no idea what to say to her. I've made my own family too. Chosen family (Some of whom I've met because of this board).

so yeah... what do you do?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Posts: 8877 | Location: ain't from 'round these parts | Registered: August 02, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by JP:
You know what's frustrating? How much of this situation occupies my subconscious, my back burner. I have a really good back burner. It does great on work stuff, and on parenting stuff. And then this situation rears up again, and fills all my back burner RAM, so that everything else gets kicked out and I can't focus on work, I forget shit at home, I get snappy and irritable with My Girls. I. Hate. It. And today, even after a great Father's Day weekend full of fun stuff, I'm jittery and thinking all sorts of weird shit thoughts and can't concentrate because my brain is starting to receive little bits and bobs from my back burner while I'm trying to work. Yet another reason to get this letter written. Rae leaves Wednesday, M goes to my folks Saturday, then maybe I'll have a go.


This seems familiar to me JP. I haven't gone through the same things you have, but when you try to bury something or put it away, it rears itself at the most inopportune times. It affected my relationship with "B"(remember her?), it was one of the reasons we broke up, me not processing some junk from the past and it reared it's ugly head. It's definitely not your fault at all being put into this, and I feel for you, but process it, go through the emotions and take them captive as they happen and deal with them. Go through it all. It isn't fair that this was put on you, somebody else's laundry that is, but it won't go away until it's processed.


-----------------------------
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Posts: 6928 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: November 15, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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(I do remember her, I liked what you said in the 10th Anniversary thread (or the appreciate thread, I forget which))

And I'm trying. Sometimes. Sometimes I get all what the hell, this is silly, I shouldn't be acting like this, just let it go and other times I'm all no, this is real, I need to let it out and experience it before I let it go, or it'll never leave. It's hard. But as you say, it's a process, one I really do need to go through. I suppose that's why others have recommended a therapist, to work through it. Still not sure if I need to quite go that route to do it right, but we'll see. Certainly talking about it here helps, and I'm sure there will be lots more talking and lots more tears as I write the letter *sigh*


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I know this is a really hard thing and you need to do what is best for you. I tend to agree that at least writing back to say "Thanks, but no thanks. Have a nice life" is probably what he's going to expect after nine months of no answer.

It's funny. When this first came up, August or September last year, and I was really really REALLY upset about it, people were telling me to take my time, it took him 25 years, don't rush it, work through it and write when I'm damn good and ready. Now, I feel like it's been too long, dragging it out, being mean, keeping him guessing, allowing him to have hope. I really don't feel like I can win this, to make this right. I'll end up doing what's best for me, and hurt him in the process, and hurting him just should be what's best for me. Y'know?


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Originally posted by JP:
I really don't feel like I can win this, to make this right. I'll end up doing what's best for me, and hurt him in the process, and hurting him just should be what's best for me. Y'know?
Yes, sometimes the extents of what can make us feel better might have cruel repercussions. It's the problem I'm facing too, I want to be honest but it sometimes seems like my honesty is a manifestation of cruelty and pettiness. What is good for ourselves is not always the best for others, and the moral implications of this simple fact can be infinite and quite nerve-wrecking. I'm not advocating hedonism, as it easily becomes selfishness, but there are situations in which you must make yourself the priority and I believe this is one of them *hugs tightly*


"If you are going to get anywhere in life you have to read a lot of books." Roald Dahl
"I still love the book-ness of books, the smell of books: I am a book fetishist - books to me are the coolest and sexiest and most wonderful things there are." Neil Gaiman
"Even so, there is no excuse for putting pineapple on pizza." Terry Pratchett

Have you fed your adorable, lovable and huggable lost girl lately?
"Continued exposure to the Lost Girl's avatar causes people to forget how to count and to repeat things." Joe_3Heads

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Posts: 9940 | Location: under a big red blanket, somewhere in milano, italy, europe, earth | Registered: September 12, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Now, I feel like it's been too long, dragging it out, being mean, keeping him guessing, allowing him to have hope. I really don't feel like I can win this, to make this right. I'll end up doing what's best for me, and hurt him in the process, and hurting him just should be what's best for me. Y'know?



Jeep, I want to consider something for a moment. If you had abandoned M 25 years ago and after some soul searching decided to get in touch with her, what would your expectation be for an outcome? Sure, he's probably hoping that you will welcome him into your life, but chances are, he's prepared himself for being rejected. Also there's probably a part of him that's scared you WILL invite him into your life...he would have to be face-to-face with a source of his guilt and his regret and fear. If you tell him that you appreciate his attempt at contacting you but you are not interested in a relationship, you are essentially letting him off the hook---he can at least walk away with the satisfaction that at least he made an effort. You would be helping to absolve him of pain that he's been carrying for a long time. I don't think there's anything cruel or hurtful about that.


ego forceps ergo ego forceps


****
"Chives?"�
"Yes, m'lud?"�
"Is that Ms Ephemera hovering over the croquet lawn?"�
"Indeed m'lud. She's marshalled all the haggle-dans. Missy-twigs and vale-nymphs from Claypole Woods. Apparently she intends to tear this house down and dance on the ruins."�
"Well, Chives, you'd better start the car, what? And pack my tennis things too"�
--- Joe 3Heads
 
Posts: 11426 | Location: In a perpetual state of Ohio | Registered: December 02, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If you tell him that you appreciate his attempt at contacting you but you are not interested in a relationship, you are essentially letting him off the hook---he can at least walk away with the satisfaction that at least he made an effort. You would be helping to absolve him of pain that he's been carrying for a long time. I don't think there's anything cruel or hurtful about that.

I honestly hadn't ever thought of it quite like that.

Smile


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think I need a drink.

I think this is going to take me a while to write.

And I haven't even started yet.

But I'm watching shows - Falling Skies, Walking Dead, and I'm practically crying at the loss and almost loss of the guys and their kids. Of Rick being reunited with his family. Jesuschrist, I mean, I can't even watch shows like this and not get emotional. I mean fuck, seriously, whatever his reasons, I believe he's not the same person who left my mom and I. And I can imagine, I can feel what it would be like to have a chance however small and not, and just, and have someone else say thanks but no thanks.

I guess I'll get over this. I know I will. I don't have anything to feel guilty about. I'm merely doing what's best for me and my family and my life now, and I can't be worried about decisions made 35+ years ago, especially decisions I didn't make. And I know I just need to get over the emotions, get past the empathy that's making me feel like this. I know it's my own love of my girls, and not being able to imagine life without them, and projecting that to someone else. I get that.

I just need to figure out, to accept, that I can do this and still be a compassionate person about it all and still do what I need to do.

And I'm going to post this now, but I might delete later.


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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whether you delete that or not, you've got my thoughts tonight. It's heartfelt and touching, and I only wish you a satisfactory outcome.

All my best, mate.


---------------
*is currently impressed*
 
Posts: 8147 | Location: London, England | Registered: July 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks, Murph.
I feel like an ass, pouring this out on here like this. But it's all I've got right now. And I just needed to be with friends, y'know?


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Posts: 22785 | Location: here | Registered: June 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
is imperfectly illuminated
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fuck feeling like an ass.

You've constructed your life without him, and that's been part of the foundation of who you are... to one side for a long time, but there. And now it's suddenly exposed and it's shaken you.

All it says about you is that you are compassionate, and human, and you're affected by the situation, and despite his previous bad treatment of you, you still have compassion for him and his plight.

Believe it or not, this is admirable, not ass-like.


---------------
*is currently impressed*
 
Posts: 8147 | Location: London, England | Registered: July 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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