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D-

You addressed the parts where Own said you were correct. But where did the other stuff come from?

In medicine we are taught 2 things. When a patient feels an impending sense of doom, we take it seriously. Vital signs might be stable, no clear indication of a reason. 90% of the time the patients fear was not irrational. They coded and died. Or coded and lived, but still. We all pay attention and it is not irrational. The fear may seem irrational, but it is not .

Floor nurses can call a “rapid response “ where there is an acute change in condition which may be very obvious and detectable ( abnormal vital signs, shortness of breath) but nurses can call an RRT for a gut feeling. And guess what, 9/10 that nurse is right .

Dread about a very possibly negative scary outcome is not an irrational feeling. It’s the body and mind alerting you about something

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Also - women have not been socialized really to be paranoid - if anything, women have been taught from a young age to "be nice" and to second guess themselves when they want to speak up or react. Only recently have efforts been made to encourage women to go with those gut feelings when they get them. Self defense courses are all about getting women in the habit of reacting rather than suppressing that reaction. It's hard to overcome years of "be a nice girl" training.

Trust your gut Own. You didn't over-react.

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Thank you guys very much. Wayfarer, I've read many of your posts that blow me away. I'm shocked by your young age and the wisdom you've gleaned in that time.

I do think we have been socialized to be nice and to feel weaker than men. Even high-powered women executives will downplay their ideas and positions in meetings with men. I remember my mother saying time and again, that's boy's work. Now my children were not raised that way. My son was never told to man up or rub dirt in it. In fact one of my brothers recently said to me "I know [my son] feels like an outsider, but I can promise you that he is the kind of guy that most guys would want to have as a friend. Maybe a guy who has feelings and talks about them is teased as girly, but even guys want that kind of friend."

I'm concerned that there is subtext here that I think D picked up on because he has followed my story more closely than many and he knows I am working on thought work. D is a natural thought worker. His constant preaching about feelings is evidence of that. Feelings are fleeting and a result of our own thoughts (often unmanaged thoughts). They are not fact. I specifically addressed in my original post the need to to do some work about this situation.

I think there is a distinction between the thought that "I am unsafe in this situation" and I am experiencing fear. I felt unsafe, no doubt, and I believe that was a correct assessment of my situation. In part I responded to that rationally. I sat by an exit door. I tried to keep things light while making clear I wasn't interested. I tried to keep it short. What I don't like, is that I felt fear. I believe that emotion took away my ability to reason in the moment as I could have. It clouded my judgment. I am a person whose life has been ruled by emotion, and in the recent past by fear. I am working very hard not to have such emotional reactions by keeping better tabs on my thoughts and in turn my feelings and emotions.

D I was not offended by anything you said and I understood your meaning and was grateful for it. I think you got what I was trying to say. I also think all of the women here are spot on about the safety issues, the ways in which women are conditioned to respond, and that I need to be much more careful in how I approach these situations going forward. I think the male observations showing they are aware of actions that make women feel unsafe (blocking an exit, etc.) make me feel good about the men writing here.

I'm glad this sparked debate. I'm a huge advocate of the First Amendment and I love all the views expressed here by everyone. I felt nothing but supported by everything I read and I feel like I learned a lot. But don't be upset with our wonderful D, I think he just saw better what I was getting at so inarticulately.

Last edited by OwnIt; 01/21/22 12:39 AM.
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Hello Own

I almost did not originally post. I was afraid of the potential repercussions. I, however, pushed my fear aside and reached out.

You are absolutely correct, what I wrote was for you. You are the intended audience. And I am so very pleased you understood the intent to empathize with your thought work.

Plenty will tell one what they want to hear, few will tell them what they need to hear.

I felt really low after my day’s work and read how “wrong” I was. Realizing my own feelings are temporary, I attempted to turn to my beliefs. I had somewhat limited success in that. Funny when one gets emotionally pulled off course. The fear from earlier sprung back with full force. My mind has been unfortunately focused upon an unwanted outcome.

I recalled the four years I’ve known you, our so many discussions, and the reason I reached out in the first place. I am grateful for your kind words Own.

I appreciate the viewpoints of these fine gals and the pointing out of dangers. I agree with them. I’d like to have jumped on the bandwagon. Yet you, in my humble belief, needed something else. And perhaps so did I.

For what it worth, my daughter lives alone. I work plenty to not fear for her. She works late into the night. Makes delivers to some very sketchy neighbours. I really was displeased to hear how she delivered pizzas out to a farm yard 20 minutes outside of the city, to a gang of drunk guys. The one who met her at her car, said he didn’t have the cash and to come inside the barn to get it. Luckily, the dudes just pulled out their wallets and cobbled together enough to pay the bill and a nice tip.

Believe me, I fear for her. Yet, what good does that fear do me? How does it serve me? And what can I control? Me. My actions. So, I’ve talked with my daughter. Of course, she doesn’t see it quite the same, however she sees it enough I think. She’s a small town girl in a big city.

Even right now, talking about D19’s experience, I am getting anxious. I am not immune to my irrational pressures. And I’m not there to protect her. The common man/father default. Seems men also have societal norms imprinted upon them.

Anyhow, presently my mind is turning to my daughter, and emotions are clouding my thoughts. Actually, a rather pleasant experience truth be told, for there are many more happy feelings than ones of dread.

Have a wonderful evening dear friend.

D


Now: Me54 XW51 S25 S23 S21 D19

Oct 8/17-BD, Moves in w/OM, Leaves Kids
Me49 W46 S20 S19 S16 D15
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a woman is vulnerable by the fact that she is not as strong as a man and would have a very difficult time in most cases having to fight her way out of a bad situation. that's just the way it is, the way our species has evolved. I am fortunate in that my Uncle Billy was a 3rd degree black belt who made sure to teach me self defense. The most important self defense weapon we have is our minds, to always be observant, assessing and analyzing things from the perspective of the person who may want to harm us. It's ingrained in me to think this way from years of his coaching and teaching. Part of that is to pay strict attention when your body and mind are telling you something isn't right. There is always a reason for it.

I recall doing an open house as a realtor some years before BD. it was towards the end of the open house. the property' back yard was quite secluded from the neighbors with no access to the front yard. the front door was quite a few very steep steps up from the street. As part of my doing open houses, I always asked my husband to come for the last 5 minutes, to be there when I did the final walk through top to bottom to make sure no one remained behind to steal anything or harm me. This particular day he was late getting there. A single man lingered. He positioned himself at the front door. There was something about him that was definitely 'off' ... and I remember being outwardly professional and cordial while inwardly assessing position, potential weapons, and exit strategies. At one point I walked toward the front door and gestured expansively saying, "look at this treetop view - imagine it in autumn, with the leaves turning color," as I shifted our positions so that I was now in the doorway to leave and he was still in the house. Moments later, my husband appeared and the man beat a hasty retreat.

I'm not sure a man in that situation would have been inwardly assessing strategies for preserving safety should the need arise. I do not fault you D for not thinking about those things. Yes, you were focused on Own's thought experiment. My point was that there was also a very real reason for Own to feel uncomfortable, as others have also noted. Both our points are valid ones.

Last edited by bttrfly; 01/21/22 02:04 AM.

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Yes D - we all love you. But THIS part is what I objected to - the part that tried to minimize the danger she felt she was in. I hope in the future when women tell you a guy was creepy, you BELIEVE them!

"Rationally, this piano tuner is not some common oaf of a repairman. Lol. The stereotypical butt crack flaunting plumber (no offence to any plumbers or repair folk). I’m sure you didn’t hire him from some dark back alley. And could be reasonable sure he isn’t going to risk his career, life, freedom, etc to attack you in your home. It’s not a break in; it’s a service call.

So he badmouthed his ex wife. My goodness, lots of people talk poorly about their ex. And of the two, woman are usually the most cruel and callous, from what I’ve listen to."

We women are subjected to this all the time - heck, this is what the Me Too movement is all about, women finally speaking up about all the stuff they have been subjected to and been socialized to keep quiet about! Women are in danger from all kinds of men, in all kinds of situations, and need to rely on trusting our instincts about this, instead of rationalizing them away.

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This is the part that had me flabbergasted as well. Because he wasn’t an oaf of a plumber should have concern? Honestly, you must know this isn’t accurate. And this has nothing to do with OWn’s individual sitch and what you know of her. And I hope your D19 wasn’t only taught to be weary of “that type” because sexual offenders can be your boss, ya know?

BTW, I have dated a few plumbers. Very successful. They make very good money. And the licensure is very difficult.

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Originally Posted by Ginger1
BTW, I have dated a few plumbers. Very successful. They make very good money. And the licensure is very difficult.
One of my best friends is a plumber and owns three houses.


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Thought experiments are reserved for situations in which other people would/could/should react differently.

I'm scared of OLD, therefore I won't date at all.

I'm scared of change I won't take this new job.

I'm scared of what happens if I fall in love, first dates only for me.

Fear exists for a reason. All emotions exist for a reason. My D19's fear of flying bugs comes from getting multiple wasp sting when she was 6 after accidentally disturbing a wasps nest on a playset in her cousins' back yard. It's irrational to me because not every flying bug will bite or sting her. It's irrational to me because the likelihood of that happening twice is so beyond slim. But she was 6 it was the worst pain she probably felt in her little life and even though she's broken bones, and had a lot worse bumps, bruises, scrapes and scarier situations happen in the time since the fear of that happening again is very real. It's not my job to tell her she's being crazy or ask her to dig into why she's giving in to that fear. My job is to let her know she's secure, she's safe, and reminder her that it's unlikely to happen again. I tell her what kind of bug it is so she doesn't like swat a poor bumble bee or carpenter bee or something that doesn't deserve it, because she'd feel terrible if she did. Mitigating fear doesn't = acting like all fear is unwarranted. Mitigating fear doesn't = ignoring real feelings for the sake of "not living in fear."

Own, it wasn't your personal history that made you scared regardless of your personal history. It was you listening to yourself. You were in a scary position. You are a diminutive woman alone, with a stranger who knows you're alone and single. He also knows where you live. He can't take a hint and said some completely unprovoked lurid stuff. Do not talk yourself out of this being a bad situation because of your thought experiment. This was pretty blatantly a bad situation. To a stranger. To people who are following you closely. To pretty much anyone this is a situation that would make some one anxious. This would not have been the time to dig deep or reassure yourself you're safe. If any other woman on here came with the same story would you tell them what you're telling yourself?

When we try to dig deep and reach more evolved versions of our selves were often pushed to dig under those "big" feelings and find the root. Find the "real" feeling. Find the trigger for lack of a better term. Find every building block of minutia that put you in that exact position in that exact moment to feel that way. But sometimes the big feelings are exactly what they present to be. As evolved as we try to be we are animals whose instincts will kick in and will override any of our higher thought especially when we are in a situation where our brain and body feel we aren't safe. Those moments do not need to be dissected. They are exactly as they present themselves, your fight or flight instincts kicked in and your ability to process at a higher level allowed you to stay aware and level headed, keep things light, move things along and get that threat out of your house.

Sometimes big feeling like anger and fear have nothing further to reduce to. Sometimes you're just angry. Sometimes you're just fearful. Exactly as one finds joy and doesn't find the need to dig in, under or around it for it to be a fully formed, fully fleshed out state of being.

DNJ, I have a 19 year old too. And I don't live in the fear that something will happen to my daughter constantly I can't. No one can. Every parent would collapse into a puddle and be locked in a padded room forever if they lived like that. But that doesn't mean I don't prepare her for the world she lives in. That doesn't mean I tell her there's nothing to fear but fear itself. I raise my daughter to keep herself safe, and alive. To keep her friends safe and alive. And yeah she was raised being far more aware and probably in more fear of the world than I was raised in, but my mother let a lot of bad things happen to me because she thought the world was made of gumdrops and rainbows. And bad things don't happen to her or the people she loves. And if they do you can't stop it so might as well just live life. I had to learn a lot of things in the worst ways possible because of that thought process. I know I'm not alone in that. Don't get me wrong I'm not saying every women every where will have to go through any of the things I went through but I am saying I know more who have gone through it than ones who haven't. And I know my kid is going to do some dumb risky ish like all people without a fully formed frontal lobe do, but she has tools both mental and physical to do what she needs to do to not find things out the hard way. And telling her to listen to her gut is a lot more useful than the police standard pepper spray.

There's a definitive line between survival instincts and irrational fear. And it's isn't a fine line. I do understand you meant well. I do understand where you were coming from. I do understand the underlying intentions here and what you were trying to do which has/had no malicious intent behind it all, but just a probing thought process to see what was underneath. That being said when there's a gaggle of women telling you there's a difference between irrational fear and survival instincts and sometimes it's not the time or place to dig deep, maybe don't double down.

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Exactly. We don’t always have to dig deep into our feelings or fears. It’s so very clear and obvious why we have then sometimes , we don’t have to delve into them all time. That is utterly exhausting. I often have feelings and instincts that are super clear. They are exactly what they appear and no need to analyze them

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