This is on the wall in a friend’s office. What do you think?
This is on the wall in a friend’s office. What do you think?
In honour of Valentines Day, I want to share a CS Lewis quote. I find this insight to be a good reminder of why love is worth risking.
I hope you are able to extend and receive love this week.
“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything & your heart will certainly be wrung & possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one…but in that casket it will change. It will become unbreakable, irredeemable.”
One of the hats I wear is co-founder and coordinator for COME2LIFE. COME2LIFE engages youth in emotional health conversations, inviting them to experience help, hope & healing. Our signature workshop is called, The Butterfly Effect, a two hour, interactive, presentation that gets us talking about what causes our emotional health to be in chaos.
Recently, we had the honour of presenting The Butterfly Effect to 120+ grade 7, 8, and 9 students. We’ve got a lot of positive response from the youth but a few days later, one of them sent us this poem. She said we could share it.
The Sinister Mind
By Taylor P.
When I am alone, my thoughts tear me apart
Ripping at my heart it does
I am sick of feeling this way, my words are completely numb
“Please make it stop.¨ I say, tears flow as my thoughts scream louder and louder
The pain is deafening, fear and dread rip through my veins
Shame and guilt are words that rip and tear at my slipping sanity like wild dogs
Shove happy pills down my throat, I don’t care
I want my needless hurt to stop
I don’t want to sink further under, stones tied to my ankles
I don’t want to feel miles of shame for things I’ve never done
I want to be happy, calm, at peace
I don’t want to feel comfort by taking sharp metal to my scarred skin
My eyes burn red, my mouth feels dry
I want to sleep, I don’t want to eat
I want to be okay
As I make my way through the dark
I see a light, a placid light
The light caresses my face and brushes through my hair
It’s feather soft to the touch
It engulfs my body, covering every crevasse and every space
It wraps around the miles of skin that I possess
It’s warm and sweet and suddenly I am okay
Suddenly the light has returned in my eyes
For the first time in a long time, I am at peace
No more shame, no more guilt
The burden of being miserable is gone
The ache of being me is gone
The mirror is no longer an enemy
The demons that lurk in my mind remain nothing but ashes
The monsters that hide in my world are now the fuel that makes me stronger
As the wounds turn to scars, this battle was won
I made it through the grenades of doubt and the bullets of hate
I am free at last.
What do you think of when you hear the word trash? Unwanted, disposable, stinks, worthless, valueless, discarded, filthy? What pictures do you have in your mind? Banana peels, dirty diapers, slimy stuff that you don’t want on your body or clothes? Nobody likes trash which is why we take it away from our homes and neighbourhoods. Nobody likes going near trash.
On Twitter and Instagram, I follow a handful of people that regularly declare, “Men are trash” or when they’re really upset, “ALL men are trash.” The person posting the statement typically receives push back, 99% of the time from men, that shout, “Not all men!” Then all sorts of messages will be posted back and forth until someone is blocked and the claim that men are trash is confirmed.
I respect the stories of those who post the claim that men are trash. This is not a knee jerk reaction to the statement. I can understand the anger and frustration they feel and pain that’s behind their feelings and words. There is a spirit of murder against the women and children of this world and men are overwhelmingly the perpetrators. All human beings are capable of much harm but sadly, we must admit men truly do some very trashy things and we do it a lot of the time.
And yet, what does it mean when we say someone, or many someone’s, is trash? Unwanted, disposable, stinks, worthless, valueless, discarded, filthy? We are shaming people. Despite popular belief, shame does not produce good; it never facilitates change. Shame erodes the very part of us that’s capable of change. Shame also produces disengagement, push back, or a desire to fight shame with shame. Think fight, flight, or freeze. Pretty tough to see change happen when that’s how people are reacting.
From that perspective, declaring that men are trash is defeating; it undermines the goal of changing the world for better. Isn’t that what we want?
A friend pointed me towards an article concerning modesty. It shifted my thinking and I want to recommend it as a must read, particularly for Christians.
Here are some highlights but please click the link and read the whole thing:
“No one really knows what “immodest” means. It puts the responsibility for a man’s lust and fantasies squarely on the shoulders of women.”
“Many conferences and books have even gone so far as to name women the “gatekeepers” of sexuality. He will go as far as you let him, the narrative goes. Wow! This a staggeringly unhealthy narrative to promote to our children about the way sexuality works, and plays directly into the hands of a rape culture such as the one in which we live: if you are a female and ever get catcalled, abused, molested, raped, or any number of other sexual advances, you are probably at least partially to blame. What were you wearing? What did you say to him? Did you bend over to pick something up? Was your perfume too sensual?”
Putting modesty/immodesty on women and saying they are gatekeepers of men’s behaviour “…grants men and boys amnesty from the responsibility of their own sexual choices.
“Not only does Jesus say nothing about female culpability in a man’s fantasies, he absolutely destroys any excuses a man might make about his inability to control his own urges. No, Jesus says, a man’s culpability begins and ends with his own dang eyes and right hand.”
Wow. Check it out and let me know what you think.
I shared this new to me blog for the first time last week. This is another post from The Crappy Childhood Fairy that really impressed me. Simple suggestions that can help anyone take baby steps towards healthier relationships.
This week, I’m introducing the new crappy vlog format. Same sloppy visuals as the drawings on written posts, same overly long narration. All new content! Hope you enjoy.
This is a blog I’ve just started to follow and this was the first post I read. I’ve also spoken about apologies and I really appreciated how this is presented. I hope this helps you be better at apologizing and also spotting those who fake apologize so you can call them on it.
If you grew up with a lot of childhood crap, you probably know a thing or two about broken down relationships! And sometimes, sometimes, it’s we who did the breaking. Or at least played a part in it. If you have any apologies you’ve been meaning to give, but weren’t sure how, this is the…
This is a must read for anyone wanting to better understand how toxic people will manipulate bystanders into a triangulation to abuse their target. Dr. Perry touches on the following scenarios:
Check out the opening comment below and find the whole article at the link.
By Dr. Perry, PhD What does it take to have a healthy relationship? Whether it is in love, friendship, work relationships or family relationships, they all need mutual respect in order to thrive. One of the reasons narcissists are not able to have healthy relationships is because they do not respect people. To the narcissist, […]
Lately, I have been on a journey to learn as much as I can about trauma. I recently went through a series on trauma presented by the National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine. It was mind-blowing – and often beyond my brain power – but fantastic nonetheless.
Another topic that interests me is nurturing healthy relationships. Love and belonging are critical to our wholeheartedness – our capacity to deal with the junk that smashes into us on a regular basis.
Anyway, here’s how those two come together. Those who had childhood trauma typically struggle more than others in their romantic relationships. That’s not big news as most of us are aware how our past affects our present. But the key question is why – why does trauma create these difficulties?
Apparently, childhood trauma produces a great deal of self-criticism and it’s the self-criticism that hurts the relationship. To be clear, the studies that have noted this weren’t saying it’s a definitive cause and effect. I’m sure there is more to this story and many subtle differences between people. It’s just a link we need to be aware of.
The good news is, there is help, hope and healing. We can reduce self-criticism and improve our relationships. Talk with a counsellor, check out online resources, pick up a book or two (Dr. Guy Winch’s book “Emotional First Aid” covers this topic fairly well I think.) Explore the options and find what works for you.
Are you overly self-critical? If so, can you see how it’s negatively impacting your relationships? What do you do to reduce self-criticism?