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PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 7:24 am 
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Dr Junig, ur thoughts about ppl coming here to offer up intrusive opinions is spot on! U have a much better way of explaining things than me (guess that's why ur the doctor lol). I'd never ever think about going to someone else and complaining about their recovery choices or what a bad medication this is that u 'think' is saving ur life..... blah blah, that's something that just makes me so angry!

Michelle, I've heard of ppl doing that in grocery stores! Thank goodness I never have witnessed it because I'd go insane seeing someone do another human being that way! Some ppl just don't know how to act or how to respect others! Gosh that's awful.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 12:49 pm 
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Jenn, It is crazy, the stories I have heard. And, I did not mean to sound so cocky in my post! I am self confident but I have been the victim of fat shaming once or twice in my life. It is really horrible to experience public humiliation no matter what the issue. I do think it is just easier for me as I have been a big girl my whole life. Actually, the way that I got here is all related I think....I had gastric bypass in 2002 and then coulld not eat or drink to deal with issues. So, pain meds did the trick! And here I am! It just drives me crazy when people are so quick to judge others! You just never know what people are going or have gone through! Oh well, I ran to Walmart and it was crazy! Everyone is gearing up for the big storm! Enjoy the rest of your day!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 2:49 pm 
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This is a painful area for me. My mom, who was a beautiful person, was morbidly obese for much of her adult life. My father, who was a good dad in many ways, threatened to divorce her their whole marriage over her weight. He was very critical and cruel to her in front of my sister and me, who inherited her tendency to easily gain weight.

My mom died after having minor surgery to remove a bone spur on her heel. She had a history of DVT (Deep vein thrombosis or blood clots), but the surgeon did not put her on blood thinners after the surgery for some reason. She had the surgery to try to exercise and diet for 6 months before insurance would pay for gastric surgery. She had the surgery to please my dad. 10 days later she died in the middle of the night from a huge, bilateral pulmonary embolism.

Her death and my father's dating behavior afterward made me want to numb the pain, and that's how my addiction started. Dad was engaged three times in three years, including a Ukrainian woman he had met on one of those Russian bride websites. She died before he could bring her to the states. All the women he dated were thin and they were told that they had to stay thin after marriage.

My mom was a source of unconditional love. Beautiful singing voice, beautiful smile, gave everyone the benefit of the doubt. My father loved her, but he was also so angry at her for not being what he thought she should be. Meanwhile, my sister and I always have to struggle to maintain a more normal body weight than our mom. Somehow, this fact did not sink in to my dad, that we might be offended at his behavior and attitude. Like I said, very painful.

Nothing incenses me more than naturally thin people, who come from a long line of naturally thin people, who think that they are thin because they have such a superior lifestyle than people who are overweight. And, like Michelle said, who feel free to comment to overweight people what they should be doing. Idiots.

Meanwhile I think about evolutionary biology. People who gain weight easily and tend to hold onto their fat stores are more highly evolved than those naturally skinny people. We were made to make it through times of famine and short supply. Our genes are more likely to be selected by evolution because we have enough body fat to carry a pregnancy in times of hardship. If modern society had not evolved so quickly, our genetic material would be more attractive to potential mates.

I am not morbidly obese, but it is a constant struggle to keep from putting on weight. And it doesn't matter whether or not a person on the street would consider me fat. I feel fat. I've felt fat since I was a child, hearing my father say, "...because you don't want to end up like your mother!" (Make sure you imagine him saying that with bitterness and vitriol.) I look back at pictures of myself as a teen and I'm shocked that I don't look the least bit overweight.

What it comes down to is the concept of walking a mile in another person's shoes. You really know nothing about a person from being on the outside looking in. Those of us who have experienced addiction should be among the most compassionate people out there. We know the feeling of judgment and being looked down upon, so we should be prepared to jump in and support others.

Sorry Mr. Googer, for hijacking your thread. Just rest assured that we are proud of you and admire your efforts!

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 4:47 pm 
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Michelle u did not sound cocky at all!! U are so kind to everyone and I doubt u have ever came across as cocky. Btw, I was at my area Walmart last night lol geez what a mad house. We're expecting snow and I know how everyone acts when the news is giving flurries :)

Amy ur story brought me in like I was there with u. U explained ur journey so vividly. And I agree, addicts should honestly be the most nonjudgmental ppl ever. After what we've been through, how could we ever judge anyone for anything. Addiction is judged so harshly, like we're trash almost. It's odd when I see someone in recovery being judgmental, I always think to myself that this person has forgotten what it was like to be judged. Because if u are an addict, u have been judged at least once by someone.

I'm sorry also mrmgrooger, but this is a darn good discussion :)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:31 am 
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Amy, I know your pain so well! My Mother has been overweight my entire life except for a very brief time when I was about 23 yrs old. She did not want her beautiful first born daughter to have weight issues. Her way of dealing with my gaining weight was shaming me. I first started to gain weight at age 10, 3rd and 4th grade. I should give you a little more background info...my father died in a car accident when I was 3, I was sexually abused at age 4, and my maternal grandmother died on my 4th birthday. Ok, fast forward to age 10, starting to like boys and boys starting to like me....terrified, sort of, hence weight gain. Again, my Mom thought I should be an airline stewardess or model ( I did model for a plus size clothing co but that was not what she had in mind!) So, at age 10, she made me stand naked in front of a mirror and told me that I was going to be fat and that it was not attractive, that people in the world did not like fat people. I joined weight watchers at age 12! At one point, she made both me and my sister join and if we did not lose 2 lbs per week, we were grounded! So, I gained and gained. She beat me for eating girl scout cookies, I gained! Being a big girl never stopped me from having boys interested but I was terrified! I also was a good Irish Catholic girl, I would go to hell if I let a boy touch me under my shirt! So, sexual abuse, loss of a parent, emotional and physical abuse by the other....lead me right to addiction! Today,after having done a lot of work on myself, I can honestly say that I am happy with me! There is still work to do! That is OK! I will get to it...on my own terms! Enjoy your day! Mr. Googer, I too am sorry for high jacking your post!


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:51 pm 
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I want to take a moment to both explain why I split this topic off and why I think this topic is SO VERY IMPORTANT!

First off, for those of you just joining this thread, we started out on Mrgooger99's update post. Our posts started going in an important direction, but one that was completely off topic from Mrgooger's post. So I split our posts from the original thread and started a topic on how shame, loss, and addiction can interact.

There is hardly a person on this planet who hasn't experienced shame and loss, but we addicts have experienced more than most. Whether our addiction began from shame and loss, or our addiction resulted in shame and loss, it is an important topic on a recovery forum.

One of the reasons that recovery from addiction involves being painfully honest is that we can't fight the monster that grips us without understanding it. We need to know who we are and what motivates us. If we hide our addiction from others it is much easier to lie to ourselves about what has brought us to where we are in life.

This is not to say that those who have decided to keep some aspects of their lives private can't know themselves. I'm just saying that it's easier to own up to our shit when we are completely honest in all that we do.

Which brings me back to the subject at hand. Michelle and I have told stories of shame and loss in our lives that have added up to addiction. I have also seen Jennifer talk about her losses and shame caused by addiction. Dr. Junig has been completely honest in the Talkzone about his story, also involving shame and loss.

We all have a story to tell. However, many of our posters haven't owned up to their addiction and/or their recovery on buprenorphine to family and friends.

I encourage you all to use this space to become honest about your own loss and shame issues. It's important to have the ability to write down how you became an addict and the pain that led to it or resulted from it.

Your stories are completely confidential and you will receive the full support of the rest of us. Please share.

Amy

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:01 pm 
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Michelle F. wrote:
Amy, I know your pain so well! My Mother has been overweight my entire life except for a very brief time when I was about 23 yrs old. She did not want her beautiful first born daughter to have weight issues. Her way of dealing with my gaining weight was shaming me. I first started to gain weight at age 10, 3rd and 4th grade. I should give you a little more background info...my father died in a car accident when I was 3, I was sexually abused at age 4, and my maternal grandmother died on my 4th birthday. Ok, fast forward to age 10, starting to like boys and boys starting to like me....terrified, sort of, hence weight gain. Again, my Mom thought I should be an airline stewardess or model ( I did model for a plus size clothing co but that was not what she had in mind!) So, at age 10, she made me stand naked in front of a mirror and told me that I was going to be fat and that it was not attractive, that people in the world did not like fat people. I joined weight watchers at age 12! At one point, she made both me and my sister join and if we did not lose 2 lbs per week, we were grounded! So, I gained and gained. She beat me for eating girl scout cookies, I gained! Being a big girl never stopped me from having boys interested but I was terrified! I also was a good Irish Catholic girl, I would go to hell if I let a boy touch me under my shirt! So, sexual abuse, loss of a parent, emotional and physical abuse by the other....lead me right to addiction! Today,after having done a lot of work on myself, I can honestly say that I am happy with me! There is still work to do! That is OK! I will get to it...on my own terms! Enjoy your day! Mr. Googer, I too am sorry for high jacking your post!


Oh Michelle, you have been through so much! I have problems with my dad, but he would never have shamed me like your mother did you. And I remember a whack from my dad's belt and spankings from my mom, but I was never beaten. And simply for eating??? I hope that some of your healing has included confronting your mother for what she did!

I am not proud to tell you that my first time on Weight Watchers was when I was 10, almost 11, and in 5th grade. I lost 11 pounds which isn't much, but like I said, I wasn't ever actually overweight until I was an adult! I still struggle with accepting myself despite being told by people that I am attractive. I always think that people are just trying to be nice.

It will be 15 years in September that I lost my mom via her sudden death. Her loss, my father's behavior, my shame. It all ties in to my addiction. Like you, Michelle, I have worked on myself in therapy, my father actually apologized fully in 2013. I remember distinctly from my days in active addiction thinking, "I never want to get clean, because then I would have to face these issues straight on." Well, it was hard, but have brought many issues out into the open that helped me come to terms with my mom's death and my addiction.

"Every addiction arises from an unconscious refusal to face and move through your own pain. Every addiction starts with pain and ends with pain. Whatever the substance you are addicted to - alcohol, food, legal or illegal drugs, or a person - you are using something or somebody to cover up your pain." Eckhart Tolle

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 7:38 am 
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Good morning All, I love Echart Tolle! Yes Amy, to answer your question about my Mom. Right now I am at a place in my life where I am keeping her at a distance. She still has the ability to cut very deep with her words. I believe that she has Borderline Personality Disorder as she has spent my entire life pushing me away and then reeling me back in. I limit my conversations with her to current events, work, and the weather. She too was a social worker and worked where I am working now. She was well respected for her work but it is well known that she could be very difficult to work with. I just find her life to be sad. She wants desperately to be the matriarch of the family but has damaged her relationships to the point that most of us, grandchildren as well, limit time spent with her. She will sometimes apologize for the hurtful things that she says and you open the door to let her in and it happens all over again! What I find fascinating is watching how each one of us interact with her so differently. And, how sometimes, that can cause friction between us! For instance, my brother saying to me that I need to move past my anger at her because she is 82 and not going to be here much longer. I am not angry, I am at a place of peace with our relationship. Funny thing is that he is not settled in his relationship with her. Sorry, I could really go on and on about family dynamics! Enjoy the day all!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 1:29 pm 
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Amy great idea about splitting this thread! That didn't cross my mind, good thinking.


I've talked a lot about my shame and guilt from using. I've talked about my addiction and the guilt of losing custody of my children and my home. I've went to jail numerous times.... I could go on and on.

As far as why I started using, there wasn't any defining moments in my childhood. I had a wonderful childhood. My parents celebrated their 50 yr anniversary last yr. My brother and I were happy with no complaints. But I did grow up being somewhat spoiled. I think that caused me to think everything comes easy, like I wasn't prepared for normal life when things get hard.

What I think is a huge moment that changed my life and caused so much pain is my divorce from my second husband (I know how that sounds lol). I was treated so awful and cheated on over and over, even when I was pregnant with my daughter. As a matter of fact, he already had another woman pregnant while we were married and living together. We worked together and the woman he cheated with and got pregnant worked in the same place we did. So I was constantly getting knives in my bk over and over, trying to pretend I was ok when I wasn't. It was miserable.

My ex is a narcissist and he took me to court over and over trying to get custody of our daughter. He never won but would still try. He picked apart my relationships, my money, my getting her to school 1 min late.... it was constant hell for years. I was constantly under a microscope. But I always won! I never did anything but be a great mother. Then..... a new relationship came along that eventually led me to try my first oxycodone 30. It took everything bad away, gave me all the energy in the world and I felt happy! U guys know what happens to all of us from there.

So that's how I finally gave that narcissistic a-hole everything he needed to finally break me. He got exactly what he wanted. It took years but he finally drove me insane lol. And that's why I believe I even tried pills. I was so beat down and I needed to numb all that pain. I have to believe everything happens for a reason, I lived my life to 30 yrs old before being in active addiction.


Sorry this was so long! It felt so good to get this out. I see an addiction counselor and go to my suboxone meetings, so I'm good at getting things out. But it took a long time to be able to talk about it without breaking down in crying fits. I've came a long way in 5 yrs but I know I still have a lot of work to do.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 8:40 am 
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Boy, what a moving thread. Jenn, I'm so sorry you were treated so badly. All of you.
I honestly think women are beautiful....all of them..simply by virtue of their femininity. The rest is all, well, just detail. I'm not just saying that. Hope it's not too much information, but I've dated and had relationships with just about every conceivable type of gal. Every one of them was beautiful in her own way.

Guys are not by any means immune to shame. I had a shaming mother, who was the only extravert in a family of introverted men. She would regularly shame my brothers and me for not being outgoing enough. No surprise now that I look back, that I developed social phobia as a teenager. There's no question that my drinking and drugging was a way to medicate away all those shameful feelings, which feed on each other
and over time make things worse and worse.

By the time I sobered up in my early 30's, I was of course a train wreck. Without the crutches there was no running from the social phobia. Just going to AA meetings was a torment, getting up and speaking my worse nightmare come true. There I was a grown man by then, and sometimes unable to look people in the eye.

Slowly it got better. I'm still the shy type when in crowds, or with new people, but feel much, much better about myself these days. I feel very sad for myself when I think about the younger me. I felt so inferior, and really for no objective reason. Self esteem it seems to me is just about everything in life. Without it, a person is well and truly lost.

But though I'm much better. that shame thing is always there. It doesn't take much at all, an unkind word, or the sudden feeling I've said something stupid (not an uncommon occurrence), and the shame spiral gets into high gear.

I think this thread's one of the best I've read since I've been here. Hope you don't mind a guy's perspective on what's so far been all ladies... :D


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 8:59 am 
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Oh my gosh no Godfrey, this is definitely not a women's only thread :)

I totally understand what ur saying Godfrey about the social phobia possibly playing a role in ur addiction. Being on something, taking something, always made me more of a social butterfly. I can see how that would be a reason to abuse anything that made u feel less awkward. And I'd say ur mothers nagging about it made u feel even more confused as a kid.

My youngest son is shy and I sometimes wish he didn't feel so awkward speaking to ppl he doesn't really know. But that's for him, not anyone else. I don't want him to feel less than or afraid.

Ur right Godfrey, this thread is so awesome! I hope all members stop by and share a little something. It's really helpful to talk about.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:57 pm 
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Thank you for posting, Godfrey.

No, shame knows no gender boundaries!

It's my hope that more of our male posters will join in. Shame is difficult to talk about. Admitting shame as a male, I believe, may be more difficult because of cultural norms.

I'm personally proud of anyone who posts their story here. It shows real maturity and bravery.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:08 pm 
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I
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t's my hope that more of our male posters will join in. Shame is difficult to talk about. Admitting shame as a male, I believe, may be more difficult because of cultural norms.


I'd say this is correct. I'd go so far as to point out that shame in men is likely a common cause of violence, especially in repressive, highly patriarchal type societies. One reads about terrible crimes that I don't even want to write about. Suffice to say that women are very often the victims of such crimes.

In western societies shame can lead to violence as well of course. Shame as we all know is perhaps the most painful emotion of all. In the moment deep shame is intense and all consuming and almost impossible to hide ...except perhaps through anger.

One easily understood example would be men who feel shame over homosexual impulses, who then go out and beat up an overtly gay man as a kind of cover. Studies have been done which seem to show that men who profess extreme dislike for homosexuals and or homosexuality are more likely to have these impulses themselves. This is not a surprise really. I think most of us can intuitively see how this might be,..

Anyway, it's a great thread. As far as my own shame goes, I find it easier to just admit it. Making jokes about it helps quite a lot too. I'm a freelance writer and use humor a lot in essays about myself. Or try to anyway. People always seem to understand. Of course, not a good idea to go around blabbing to strangers or unsympathetic types. But I've never once been made to feel like I've made a mistake when talking...or writing... about my own shame


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2017 10:50 am 
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Hi all!
So glad I found this thread. I was confused at first til I read about the thread being split off.
I have so much to say, i took notes as i read.

Through therapy I realized that i also starting using because of loss the first time and the 2nd time do to multiple losses and shame. I used pills recreationally for years. my parents, who my SO and I were modeling our own relationship on, unexpectedly divorced after 30+ years. then the weekend my grandma died was the 1st time i did enough opiates to get that warm comforting feeling and i even "got itchy"
I did get sober for 5 years on my own, but if i had had therapy back then i would have a least been aware of possible triggers.
some really bad things happened over a 2 year period. 2 accidents, a family member that i raised convicted of murder (also have guilt about that), death of pets, then my other grandma died. i inherited some money from her and blew through it in less than a year. so then i had loss and shame/guilt which led me to relapse.

as far as weight issues. i grew up with a mom who was always dieting. she did weight watchers and has been active in OA for 30 years (overeaters anonymous if you didn't know) i think my mom tried to help me not have food issues like she does. she would make comments about how much ice cream i put in a bowl or how many brownies i ate. this was odd to me as i was so thin. i would actually drink slimfast type drinks with meals to try to gain weight. i tried for years and was never able to gain. girls at school would always ask if i was anorexic. i overheard girls saying they hated me because i was so thin. i ended up hiding how much i ate, rearranging things so it didn't look like i took so much. putting a few flakes of cereal in a bowl and adding water and placing it in the sink so she'd think i ate a bowl of cereal for breakfast when i instead had a bag of cookies. fast forward to gaining 40 lbs since i've turned 40 and not being able to lose any of it!

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2017 3:32 pm 
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Oh Sis! I understand so well where you are coming from. I underwent the same scrutiny from when I was a little girl. In my case, my Dad would always say, "You don't want to end up like your mother!" Always in a bitter, angry, vindictive voice. He honestly thought that he deserved my mom to be skinny. She went through so many diets so many times. I was 10 the first time I started Weigh Watchers with my mom. Yet I go back through pictures of me growing up and I was never fat. I went through a couple of chubby phases, but that's it. But I thought I was fat the entire time.

To a large extent we are all products of our genetic heritage. Most of us, for example, have some family members who also became addicted to a substance.

I have to say that it's obnoxious that people can believe that a person like you could try so hard to gain weight and not be able to do it, but that a fat person overeats and is lazy. Of course that can be the case, but there are many more factors at play.

I am sorry that you have suffered so much loss. I can't imagine having a person that I helped raise be convicted of murder. You must have felt so helpless. Divorce can hurt at any age. It's so difficult going through the process of recognizing that our parents are very flawed. That's the process I went through when my mom died.

I don't think that anyone can get through life without feeling shame and unworthiness. Very few of us are equipped to get through those strong emotions without help. So we do the best we can.

Thank you so much for sharing, Sis. You are very brave to tell your story.

Amy

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