Thursday, November 17, 2011

How I really feel

BAM! I had an unexpected revelation of my real feelings for my father yesterday.

I went to a family celebration at my aunt's. He was invited there for lunch, and my chosen family for dinner. I hadn't expected to see him there.

Which is why, when I entered my aunt's house and saw him sitting there, I almost fainted. My heart started racing, I had trouble breathing, and darkness enveloped me. Spontaneously, I frowned in horror and asked him: "What are you doing here?"

After I'd had time to compose myself, I acted like I always do around him: polite, civil, smiling. My feelings were under control too, like they always are when I know in advance I'll be meeting him.

This isn't new, either. I was reminded yesterday of a very similar event form when I was seven or eight and my father unexpectedly showed up on my school trip, when I thought I'd be free of him for two weeks.

Back then, I also gasped for air. The sun seemed to go black. I felt sudden and intense fear. And all I could utter was also, word for word: "What are you doing here?"

What amazes me is how I've been able all my life to suffocate my feelings and put them under control in order to survive and get on with my life despite his continuing presence. I braced myself and controlled my emotions and reactions.

But there are very negative real feelings under there that only truly surface in their natural intensity when I'm relaxed, not expecting to run into him. And then I do.

Last night, I felt stalked. In reality, I don't even think he actually stalked me - apparently, he came to dinner because he actually had a funeral to attend earlier in the day. But I felt stalked. Like there was no safe place for me that he couldn't invade.


  1. Feelings are a clear indicator of how we are at that moment. Only when we think about them too much do things get muddled. Sounds like you handled the situation very well.

  2. Yeah, it sucks to not be able to achieve no contact reliably. Maybe it would help you feel safer to focus on the fact that your father doesn't know the real you at all, and never can. --quartz

  3. I really related to this post. It amazes me the energy I spend preparing myself when I know I will see my parents, even when things are going "well" between us. It's like I am shoring up for an attack of war, or at least some sort of breach of my defenses that will leave me depleted and vulnerable. Forget it if I got blindsided by seeing my parents -- I totally would get heart palpitations.

    No wonder it is difficult for us children of N's to feel safe when we were raised in a place where the illusion of safety was used to pull the rug out from under us just to keep us in line.


I encourage comments!!!