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I had something similar several years ago when my kids were almost launched and were being adult outside the house but not inside the house. We were living in a too small apartment and I was doing too much of the upkeep in addition to working 50 hours a week. Our showdown ended with 2 of them not speaking to me for several years. I can't tell you how painful that was, and yet looking back there is no way we could have continued as we had been. It wasnt healthy for anyone. That doesnt mean that it didnt break my heart.

I can only think, looking back, that it was a combination of all of our dysfunctions that precipitated it. It was very hard for me to let go of it, even though I was exhausted and resentful. I can see now that they were dealing with some pretty rugged depression and were reacting the way any of us will--going in their rooms, pulling the covers over their heads. If they had done it in their own places, they would have eventually had to drag themselves in and do the dishes in the sink. But because I was there, I was doing them long before they got to that point. (and dishes is just one of the things I was doing!)

Looking back, I would have forced the issue before I was on my last nerve. I would have gotten them out to do the dishes instead of angrily doing them myself. There was a part of me that was more comfortable with my martyr role (and it wasnt comfortable at all) than I was with being empowered and expecting them to be as well. I didnt know how to launch them, and they didnt know how either and we were all scared and all felt guilty.

All that is to say, we dont, in our current culture  have clear ways for children to take their place in the world--and if they are struggling, its hard for those of us who are good at nurturing to let them fall. The ones who completely cut off contact with me broke my heart in a million pieces, but I honestly dont think they could have done it with me right there. My consolation came only this year when we finally all had Christmas together for the first time in 7 years.

Thinking of you, Skep.

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board / Re: Coronavirus
« Last post by lighter on Today at 05:26:44 PM »
Well. I ordered a bark collar for baby girl pug then went back into the yard. 

It's sad to think of our dogs watching us and worrying.....
"I know you're watching the fear box."

That's so sad. 

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board / Re: Coronavirus
« Last post by Hopalong on Today at 04:58:01 PM »
Don't feed the fear furnace.
Enough people are on the job.

M sent me an essay from The New Yorker today, about dogs worrying about their owners.

"I know, you're watching the fear box," one dog says.

That's what news is but more significantly, it's DEFINITELY what social media is.

Retreat, relax, stop reading.

Amber, I have a serious fear about freeloaders staying so comfortably in the new house you optimistically paid for that never mind your opinion about their need to work. Much less return your tools, respect your kitchen, or show you grace.

Have to ask it: What happens if they just won't go? Next steps?

Worry worry,

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board / Re: Coronavirus
« Last post by lighter on Today at 12:39:18 PM »
So.... we've had our first shooting in the neighborhood.  Someone shot INTO the home of a person living a couple hoods over.  The post said there was a shot INTO her home the next day also.. this one hitting her dog in the head, but not killing it.

This was followed by what appeared to be passive-aggressive posts from people who felt it was very sad someone took the law into their own hands in a necessary attempt to quiet down barking dogs who had a view of the entire hood, barked at EVERYTHING and without any pause. These neighbors are named in their posts, have a view of everything going on and are engaging with the dog owner on the message board.

The dog owner wrote the bullet almost hit her son, which suggests to me the person pulling the trigger had a good scope and sent a very pointed message... terrifying, IMO. The owner went on to say anyone COULD have called her to talk to her about the problem, but didn't.  It seemed like neighbors on both sides chimed in and I haven't checked to see how that's going today......
dogs are meant to bark
dogs shouldn't be allowed to bark non stop in populated areas ::shrug::

When Auntie H died, she'd been struggling/sobbing over not being able to sleep for months bc of a neighbor's dog barking all the time.  She talked to that neighbor.  She put foam insulation in her windows... her bedroom was dark all the time, she had to sleep sitting up bc of congestive heart failure AND she could barely eat..... not being able to sleep was torment and she died tormented bc a single neighbor gal didn't have the capacity to deal with her dog or consider her neighbors.  I was very upset at that dog owner at the time. I felt the dog deserved a home where someone attended to it and could care for it better.   

I've been on both sides of the problem and I DID feel responsible for quieting my barking dog.  It was a problem.  I worked at solving the problems.  I didn't do it perfectly and one set of neighbors remained angry at me, despite my trying and worrying and dealing with the problem with occasional problems.

Two neighbors, the two I'd run to if the contractor showed up, were talking about having the ability to protect themselves and property if the worst case scenario happened.  Are we at that point?  They fear people running out of food, bc of lost jobs, breaking into their homes to take food and stuff, and having to KILL these people.  We have a good safety net to feed people who can't feed themselves, IMO. I don't worry about that right now.

Guns are coming into the equation around here.



I'm glad to finally be on the same page with you..... enjoying little things like feeling toothpaste in the mouth (suggest TOM's activated charcoal toothpaste, fun for the whole family!)   

The mossing neighbor created her first feature and I'll get to see it today.  The most rabid conspiracy theorists around me are calming it the f down and I've done so much work in the moss I feel terrific this morning... looking forward to continuing it, sharing it with the mossing neighbor..... finding out if her neighbor, with perfect moss yard, has information to help me care for mine and figure out the big yellow blotches. 

I'm glad you've had some fun with the bear hunt.  It IS taking pleasure in the little things that bring us joy.



I was struck with several thoughts while reading your post.

1.  ALL the clutter and crap the kids have in your home should BE IN THEIR SPACE or in the barn or the shed to whatever spaces aren't YOUR LIVING AREA. 

This is YOUR home, not their dumping ground, grazing ground, complaining ground, blaming ground.  Why do they feel it's those things? 

2.  IS this YOUR problem?  Really?

Your post reminded me SO much of the first conversation I had with my T about my problem... codependence. 

It was MY problem, not the people I was frustrated with. 

Hell, just tell them what needs doing.  Packing... yup.   Pack it all up.  Move it to the space of your choosing and let it be so.  Now.  No time for yammering, complaining, dwelling on YOUR life and choices. 

The last thing coming up for me is the feeling you have about the kids expecting you to have all the answers for them WHEN obviously they aren't open to much, if anything, you have to say about.

Whatever dynamic is going on here isn't working for you, or them IMO.

Whatever you want to create, before B arrives is up to you.  It's your home, your property, your rules or the kids can go where they may create their own rules, which is how growing up works, IME.  No upset or bother..... go in good faith, with best wishes, you believe in Hol and know she'll figure it out, bc she's competent and capable enough to do so.

Make a list.  Make a copy or two.  Give Hol a list, put one on the fridge, and one in your safe space.  Require they check boxes off daily.

If they complain, refer them BACK to the list and stay focused on your own business.

They have their business.

You have yours.

THAT ONE LITTLE THING made all the difference for me in the world.... frustration evaporated, I was lighthearted toward the folks I was so !UPSET!! with and MY stuff was easier to focus and work on without all that codependent chatter in my head and body.

Just say'in...... this might be easier to solve than you think.

Take what makes sense and ignore the rest. 

I know you'll figure it out, bc...

you're competent and capable; )

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board / Re: Coronavirus
« Last post by sKePTiKal on Today at 09:36:48 AM »
Our stay at home order was declared March 16.
It's been almost a month.

To date, the state has had 4 deaths from the virus - all nursing home residents or very ill elderly. Except for a handful of medium-sized cities, we have very little "urban" areas.

Life is going on out here "as normal". I got curious about the state's definition of "essential businesses" - and about the only things shut down are the social clubs (VFW and the like), schools, restaurants and the odd bowling alley or movie theater. (We don't even have many of those things out here.)

Most of the reported numbers by state (on average over all 50 of them) show that pretty much the 80-90% recovery rate that China was advertising has held true here. EVEN in urban areas. So, I'm thinking that this continued social distancing "mandate" is very much overdone.

I'm thinking some other things too; but that's not our focus here.
Yes, Hops. I would absolutely pursue my plans & projects IF:

my tools were put back - or not "lost" - because someone else used them and isn't considerate enough
my studio wasn't completely filled with other people's materials
my kitchen wasn't cluttered with the kinds of things I don't cook with (and they don't either apparently; they graze all day long)

And I am denied control over my own stuff - "because" this or that justification or excuse

I have my "cave" - the master; to hide out in. The work in progress has made the door to the back deck available to me now, so I've also created a small sitting area there too.

It will HELP, when the Hut is completed enough for them to move into. AND they buy their own tools. :P  We estimate maybe another month. And when I'm finally able to talk to her again, I'm going to impress upon her the need for both of them to go back to work... as soon as that restarts.

The lack of consideration and the absurd expectation that I have all the answers to why their self-created lives suck... and what to do about that... as if I don't have my own life is enough of a burr under my saddle right now to make me BLUNT, TO THE DIRECT PERSONAL PAINFUL POINT, and keep me on the edge of being swept away by all the pent up anger over the behaviors I was directly told would change, or wouldn't continue being a problem for me.

I've suggested that she start packing this last month. :D

Rather than just drift around having her attitude... and proclaiming how "unevolved" or "unfair" I am.
Smart idea about the early walks, Tupp.
Nature is still here, the planet is serene, and I find it helps so much to just be one of their creatures sometimes, taking advantage of fresh air and a spot of sunlight.

CB, I'm glad you're weathering it so well. I've decided on a news shutdown in the evenings, as that's when my psyche is least well defended from the global pain. Instead I'm doing silly things like watching young black male musicians on YouTube who are doing what is called "reaction" videos...taking in some of the music from the sixties and seventies they had no clue about. Watching their faces melt listening to the Righteous Brothers has been magical.

I've decided I'm ready to shelter (except for M's house) until 2021! It's simpler in my case since I'm not working. But the quiet is good for me. I feel extremely lucky to even be able to do this. And I keep casting back to the great depression my mother's family survived, on gardens, chickens and skim milk donated from a farmer. She made it. They mostly made it. And in my pleasant circumstances with my back yard, even if I have to hire helpers, I can make it too.

I think I'm just going to take this as a new life chapter that is going to have gifts within it. Try to be helpful where I can and the rest of the time, just grateful.

Hugs both,

Hops, that's what I noticed this morning.  Because the endless stress and pressure and rushing around has ceased, and it's so much quieter outside so my ears aren't being assaulted as I try to get through my day, I found this morning that I was actually, genuinely noticing the things I was able to do and feeling grateful for them.  I don't usually feel gratitude.  Relief, a lot of the time, that I can get something done, and I think to myself '"Thank goodness I can do this instead of that", but I don't feel it.  It's a separate, logical process and it's not connected to my body and my emotions, and I think that's because my body and emotions are usually just dealing with the stress and the pressure.

But this morning I found myself feeling grateful for the clean clothes hanging in my wardrobe and enjoying the feeling of putting them on, enjoying the sensation of the toothpaste in my mouth and the warm water on my face.  There isn't usually time to notice those things.  My mind is on the other 150 things I need to get through before bed time and there's just no space to appreciate something as simple as putting a clean pair of pants on.

I spent two hours cleaning and re-organising my kitchen.  Two hours!  I never have two hours to do anything.  I've been through all the food we have in and listed it all on a whiteboard that I usually keep up to write notes to remind myself what to do.  I've split it into lists of fresh (which needs to be used up first) and then a list of what I have in the cupboard so I can see easily what I need to use up quickly and what I've got to add it to.  How organised is that?!  Would never usually have time to do that.  The weather is warming up so I mopped the floor with the back door open and the breeze wafting through to dry it.  I made myself a really nice breakfast of hard boiled egg, cucumber, tomato and cheese and I've got endless loops of festival footage playing through the TV.  I just never, ever get time to have a morning like that.  And it's still not even 10am yet :)

The bear hunt thing has caught on over here so we put something in the window this morning.  Our neighbour's little girl broke free from the garden and was running down the street chasing a cat.  She stopped when she saw the bear and stopped to look at it - which gave her mum time to catch up and grab her!  So it's already been very useful.  Lol.

I don't want to go back to my old life.  I'm enjoying this one of quiet and pressure free mornings, and having the whole day ahead of me and knowing I can do what I need to do and still have time to relax at the end of it, instead of knowing that even if I rush about all day, I won't get everything done.  It's a much nicer feeling.  I'm going to have a look out for those YouTube videos you mention as well, they sound great! xx
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