I wish I had the exact stat but I've heard Dr. Phil say countless times how the presence of a non biological male adult in the home increase the chance of molestation by, I want to say, 21 times. I know it's a large statistical increase. That's just sad but true.
It's also sad that those of us who would never think if doing anything inappropriate have to be careful with anything we do - like a sleep over with a friend of a daughter. I recently saw an attractive woman with her adorable daughter and was going to say something. Truth be told I thought the mom was hot and wanted to say hello. I did say something to mom but kept my mouth shut about mentioning how adorable her 10 ish year old daughter was for fear of sounding creepy. That's just so sad as I'm the last guy who'd ever have "those" type of thoughts but it's today's reality.
I don't like any of it but it is our reality. You don't like it either nor think that BF is a threat but you never know. Talking in general terms s a good move and well supported.
DonH Midwest Me 56 WAW-EXW 55 Met 11/95 / Married 5/00 Bomb 6/20/05 / She Filed on 6/2/06 / Divorced on 10/9/06 4 who'd qualify as GF since D & dated about 25 women since D
You have been given some great advice from some solid people.
Remember Zues you have been engaging in "keeping yourself safe conversations" with your children since they were born.
Your conversations have been based on your children's developmental stages, and for the most part they were focussed on the 'safe topics' related to child safety, like not poking things into to electric topics and not running around with food and wearing helmets while skating or biking.
You have likely felt comfortable delving into stopping violence converastions- 'good behaviour' related to not hitting others and not allowing others to hit you, using kind words rather than unkind words. T
These conversations about violence tend to be a parents first interface with conversations about personal boundaries, often physical boundaries. The keeping yourself safe conversation related to personal space related to one's body and sexual safety is just an extension of this conversation. And often where parents feel less comfortable.
Ideally when discussing physical violence or verbal violence parents could or should be adding the boundaries related to good and bad touch too. Ideally again , the younger you start these conversations, often the easier it is when a new developmental stage and situation occurs, as you already have a language and narrative related to it to fall back on.
We haven't talked about stranger danger for a long time in this work. We instead talk about 'safe adults'. And this is based on a child's understanding of their own sense of who and what feels safe to them. This is a learned skill.
The research in this strongly supports that children who have experience of and language to articulate their emotions, are often able to identified and express there unsafe feelings and are better able to set clear boundaries for themselves and others, including adults. Those children who struggle in this area are children, who have often been on the receiving end of mixed messages from the adults in their lives.
Overall Zues these conversations are not necessarily about the topic at hand, but more about skill development related to recognising emotions....what behaviours in others makes me feel comfortable or uncomfortable... what does boundary crossing feel like to me, what does my body feel when someone has crossed a boundary. What do I do with these feelings when they confuse me. What is a respectful way of saying no.
You have written on occasion about how you have handled your son's at times challenging behaviours and your have presented reasonable and considered parenting interventions to address these. I believe you will find a parenting response that sits with your values and parenting style.
Please too, as V said abuse does not see gender.
Also I am not sure why people think children are safer when women are in a home. I am all for minimising risks for children. But lets be clear women perpetrate all kinds of violence on children; I can assure you of that. Men are not our enemy here, adults that hurt children are.
Thank you. Sunny, V, Juju, G, JB, what a team I have. I'm glad I asked. You each brought up some good points.
There is a lot of this I haven't done directly, such as start young, or talk about boundaries too much. But as I look back maybe I have to some extent and just didn't realize the significance. I can think of a few conversations and am sure there were others, and of course there's leading by example. Regardless, I am going to look for opportunities to bring up these things without having a big sit down conversation. I'm going to sit with your posts for a few more days and probably read up on a few things and try to feather it in little by little.
OK- quick pool update. I am in full out beast mode. My buddy and I just got back from a tournament in WI. 9 ball and 8 ball. He took 1st in the 9 ball, 2nd in the 8 ball. I took 3rd in the 9 ball, 1st in the 8 ball. We essentially took home all the money.
It's fun to win. It's fun to make money. And it's fun to see improvement and use the skills you work on in battle. I've always played well when I was on my best game, but lately it seems like my average and low gears are getting really tough. When I stumble I bounce back very quickly. I fight much harder when I'm not in the mood (tired, feeling disengaged, right after a loss, frustrated, etc). All in all, I'm turning into the player I've always wanted to be and am getting the results I've wanted all of my life. Playing with this guy as a co-pilot is really pushing me hard to keep up, and I'm close. He's probably doing 60% to my 40% in terms of prize money won over the last 6 tournaments but I know I'm giving my all and I'm probably pushing him at times too!
In a few months I have some bigger matches lined up with national and international competition that will prove a bigger test. For now I'll play regional and keep preparing as best I can.
OK, ok, enough now. Just feels to good not to share. Thank you again and talk soon!
Me:38 XW:38 T:11 years M:8 years Kids: S14, D11, D7 BD/Move out day: 6/17/14, D final Dec 15
Hey guys! It's been a while. I haven't had much to post and it's pretty easy for me to retreat within myself.
Everything is going great.
My job, which has been a two year roller coaster, seems to be on an upswing. I was number one in April and am leading so far in May. January-March I had two of my best months, and what I did in the last 5 weeks has already exceeded that for quarter two. I don't know if it's repeatable but that buys me some time to figure all of that out and means I won't be looking for work in 2018 at least.
Family is awesome. Let's see. S13 is about to turn 14. He, like me when I was his age, is a huge Beatles fan. Ringo Starr, the drummer, has a concert in MN in September and I got him tickets for his birthday. I couldn't surprise him because his birthday is 3 weeks out and he was stressing about tickets selling out every day, sometimes the surprise isn't the most important thing. He's thrilled. He's a good kid, he's still been spending time with the rest of the family when we play games together and he's done an impressive job setting some better habits and keeping his grades up. It will be good to go to this show.
D11 is a blast. We went to the Mall of America yesterday for a school field trip, I ended up being a chaperon and riding on a ton of roller coasters and eating ice cream. Good times. We're still reading every night, watching shows (the new National Geographic series about the Earth, "This Strange Rock"). D11 is also starting to play some seriously good pool. I found out that the pool youth league next season is on Sundays, it is a little ways away but since it's on the weekend I think I can get her there. She has the potential to do very well and may find herself getting opportunities to fly and compete nationally. Or she might lose interest. Who knows. But it's fun to play with her. I'd like her to see what it's like to play other kids instead of her dad.
D7 is doing pretty well. She is becoming a read-o-holic which is awesome. I'm reading her choose your own adventures and she loves them. She's gotten a lot bigger. She still thinks she is a little kid sometimes and it's possible her mom might encourage that. There was a time XW liked my kids to be someone dependent and needy to feel needed and loved, but who knows, that was three years ago and I've been impressively distant since then so she may be a different person now. But I've been really impatient that D7 doesn't demand more from herself. She is kind of ditsy, like "I'm just a little girl" which doesn't fly with me. So I'm kind of putting the hammer down a bit, not accepting excuses and demanding what I know she's capable of. My kids may have a complex or hate their dad when they get older but they're not going to be helpless whiny victims that shrug and mumble 'I dunno, that's all I can do'.
What else? Pool? Man, I haven't been playing much. Tournaments haven't been popping up at the right times, and I don't skip my family weekends to compete. It's been two months of mostly practicing. And 80% of my practice is on my break, which is tedious, tedious work. I don't really have any desire to achieve any particular outcome with pool, but I have a vision of what I could do if I had a top notch break on top of my current level of play. I think it would be fun to put that together and then run it a few times in national competition. Just to do it, to enjoy the feeling of putting my true best self forward. The results will be what they will be and don't really matter to me.
Boy, pretty boring really. Oh, I have problems. I have been struggling to try to get into a work out routine and have been intermittent at best. But overall I just feel like everything is about as good as it gets. Something will give at some point and rock my world so I'll enjoy this while it lasts. But I also know that I've gone through the darkest hours of my life and I am prepared to survive more suffering when it next surfaces in my life.
Thanks for the note and be well DB gang!
Me:38 XW:38 T:11 years M:8 years Kids: S14, D11, D7 BD/Move out day: 6/17/14, D final Dec 15
I haven't been around much lately (well for months really) and this morning (saturday May 5th almost 8am NZ time) I thought I would stop by and say hello. And find that you updated yesterday.
I'm pleased that life is finding a pace that is good. After the years that we have faced a little boredom and lack of drama is refreshing. I appreciate your comments on the "something will give at some point". We have grown Zues when the anticipation of the next part dip on the roller coaster of life isn't anxiety producing.
Your children sound delightful and real. You worked hard to have what you do with them. Great to see you have that reward.
As for me, from mid 2017 work has got me down, I took on a role I don't really think I am suited to. Management is not my thing. But I am learning more about my self and my skill set. I am learning more and more that too much contact with people leaves me drained and anxious. Still trying to figure out the balance.
My home life and relationship are settled in some kind of way. It is at least predictable in it's unpredictability. My man and I celebrated two years of our long distant relationship in March 2018. We have been back and forth between our respective home countries over the last two years. It has been a significant investment in time money and emotion, but well worth it. I am a very lucky woman to have found him. I am by far the happiest and settled I have ever been. We are not the perfect couple by any stretch. We have lots of similarities, in that we are both introverts, lacking in self confidence. We have some points of contention, and unresolveables. But we neither of us a fighters. We have found some good problem solving strategies and have both learned to let go. He loves my body as it is. His view is that all women are beautiful and sexy and I am more so given he chose me. I have learned to trust his view of my body, I trust him when he says I am sexy that I turn him on. I don't push his hands away or hide my naked self from him. I think this level of trust makes him feel good. I however remain in quiet discord about my body and the reasons he would be physically attracted to me. More importantly though our values are and our feelings about commitment in relationships are the same. The trust is high between us. We have been talking about our future together which has involved conversations about marriage and a move of countries for one of us. Things will likely start moving forward in the fall when his youngest starts college.
So if am moving to my man's home town a new career path is likely on the horizon. I cannot practice in his home town very easily. A big process and financial investment. It's a starting over at the bottom of the rung for me if I choose to remain in my current career. His home country pays really poorly for what I do. I am struggling with the thought of being so financially dependent. He says it would be a pleasure to support me, given that I am moving my life to be with him and if are to be partners this is what needs to happen. He says it is the right thing to do. I have never been financially dependent on anyone, not even my mother. I had my first part time job at 14 years old, as my mother was a single parent on minimum wage. From age 14 my mother paif my school fees and my school uniform and put food on the table and roof over my head. I looked after everything else. It will be a challenge for me. But I feel lucky that he he values the opportunity to support me.
My mum has been in remission from her cancer for about 16 months. She seems to be in the place of balance between feeling old but still wants was to live her life. But seems so incredibly torn with feeling her body it is not up to it. The mind wants and the body is slowing her down. We have talked a lot about what she wants at her end of life. I love her dark humour about it all, I know I am my mother's daughter in the way I can match her in conversation about death and dying. The the thing she worried about the most is a pain death. We have decided that we will experiment with medicinal marijuana. Some edibles first we think. Let the baking begin. BTW we don't have medical marijuana where I live. We joke about her getting her first criminal offence as a 76 year old granny. Personally I love the idea. Finger to 'the Man' I say. Anyway my mum has been able to convince my 85 year old aunt to go on a cruise to and around French Polynesia. This is something for her to look forward to. She cannot fly due to two blood clots she got from the chemo for her cancer. Which makes my possible move overseas a little devastating for me. But we will figure it out.
Anyway Zues a wee update from me. I still think of your often. You and a few others are the only reason I still stop by. Good to hear from you.
Hi Jelly, thank you for replying! I'm very glad to hear the update and have you around.
That is a predicament with the move. I'm all for you going, but it is a hard sacrifice to be away from your family too. I don't know the right thing to do. I know my family is scattered all over the world these days, but somehow we are still here for each other when it really matters. Maybe you can move and start a new life with your man and still stay close when the chips are down. Don't let money stand in the way at least, when you make this move you're investing a lot more than money already, might as well go all in.
Well, it's been a hard week for my family. My sister, the one who I've had a fragile relationship as she was an accomplice to XW during her wayward period and ultimately bff's through the divorce, has had her life crash down. She is 41 and has had a hard life from angry divorcing parents as a child, to heroin addiction from her late teens through her 20s, to a pretty abusive relationship through her 30s. It's like a spiral where she was dealt a tough hand and made some bad choices and they have rippled through her life and no matter how hard she's tried to get back on top of it she's struggled to come out on top.
The last year or two it seemed like she broke through. There is a guy that she has known for a long time but despite a strong friendship kept a distance because he too came from a checkered background and that's where she knew him from. She wanted to avoid that. But years later he'd straightened up his life and they reconnected and eventually fell in love. I can't describe the 18 months they had together, it was romantic and passionate and filled her life up, like the Titanic love affair that never ended. It was culminating with wedding plans for this summer. It seems like I just rsvp'd the invitations.
She came home Sunday and found him dead. Overdose. Apparently he had an old friend that was desperate to score something and he finally agreed to help out and made a connection for him. Not sure what prompted him to the lapse for sure, but I know they'd recently suffered a huge loss. See, after a lifetime of gradually resigning herself to never becoming a mom (she was recently single at 40 and had given up), she had gotten pregnant and was an expecting mother. Well, she miscarried and they just lost the baby. This was obviously devastating. Regardless of why, this man made a horrible mistake and didn't get any more chances.
Now my sister is suffering the loss of her fiance and love of her life on top of the loss of the children she thought she'd have with him. And she kind of had all of her eggs in one basket, he was her world. Given her past and the road she's been down I really don't know how she'll make it through, every purpose she had and her identity has been revoked utterly. I'm at a loss. It's so profoundly shocking how you can truly lose everything.
I was with her today and will be again tomorrow and the next day and will go from there. I'm looking at pictures with her and listening to stories about him. What can I do?
Meanwhile my son isn't doing well with it. He's dealt with a lot and never really recovered, so events like this trigger him in frightening ways. He had to leave school today and wasn't in a good spot. It wasn't my night with him but I arranged to see him, after I left my sisters we went for a drive and talked for an hour or so. I'm not up to duplicating what I shared with him but it was what I was given to say and I think, despite feeling totally helpless, I think I found a way to help. Both by being there and in some other ways too. He's a good boy and I believe he will find his way through.
So now I'm just shot.
In general I feel super solid right now. I feel like I went through a 3 1/2 year boot camp and I am prepared to do whatever is in front of me. It's funny, I was a bad husband in many ways and cringe at how immature I behaved. For the first time I feel like I'm a strong man.
Doodler, if you're reading this, I've been a Jordan Peterson fan as well. I love what he says about reducing suffering. He uses the example of standing up tall so when your parents die you can help organize the funeral and say a few good words instead of sobbing in the corner and getting into fights with your siblings. JP also is the first person I've ever heard who appears to make the same case for marriage that I've made. It's pretty validating. Maybe another post I'll mention the key words that will call up that video clip, I wanted to share but not my point right now. But I booked VIP tickets to a JP lecture coming to MPLS and am taking my best friend. I played a JP clip for my friend and he likes him as much as I do so we're going to go to his gathering and even meet him after the show briefly. That's something to look forward to.
What a day. I'm still in so much shock I am just stunned and in 'task completion' mode. But please, a moment of silence for my sister's sitch. Thank you all.
Me:38 XW:38 T:11 years M:8 years Kids: S14, D11, D7 BD/Move out day: 6/17/14, D final Dec 15
Doodler, if you're reading this, I've been a Jordan Peterson fan as well.
I really like JP. He's a deep-thinker and, regardless of what anyone may think of him, he's certainly a caring and passionate person. I'd like to see the debate between JP and Sam Harris scheduled in June; I like both of them, but they have some real points of contention.
My parents are fundamentalist Christians but, even as a young kid, I couldn't swallow the literal interpretations of the Bible as used in their brand of religion. Needless to say, I'm not a religious person, but JP's metaphorical interpretations of religious and biblical teachings is very good. And, he integrates that into our modern day scientific knowledge. Good stuff.