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Hi Folks, :wave:

From time to time I suffer from repeated bad thoughts. The incident happened a long time ago, and I’ve lost touch with the woman who ‘commiserated’ with me so I can’t talk it through with her.

I’d had a serious accident, but I felt surprisingly cheerful when left to my own devices. She came visiting, but would not let me feel cheerful. She insisted on repeatedly imposing her own feelings on me, regardless of anything I said, and then criticised my obvious distress. I know, a grossly insensitive person who couldn’t depart from her own viewpoint for a moment and then passed the buck, while claiming that she was polite society and I was ‘wrong’ for not humouring her!

The trouble is that this is all ancient history. I do of course know all the usual clichés about ’putting it out of my mind’ but how do you [B]really[/B] stop a thought you wish would never recur?
I don't think you can get totally rid of bad memories. All of us must go through bad experiences and no wonder all of us have bad memories, too. It is impossible (and maybe even unhealthy) to live a regret-free life.
Anyway, the best way of coping with bad memories is: a) to live in the present as much as possible; b) to accept that bad memories are also a part of your life; c) to look at them without being too dramatic and self-pitying.
Time always makes bad experiences lose much of its importance or... monstrosity. Take your time.
What about your [B]good[/B] memories? You certainly also have them, don't you?
Hi Folks :wave:

Thanks for the welcome back! Rosequartz, I think about this forum, but one thing I can’t manage to do is to fit in everything I would like to do away from the computer *and* visit all the best discussion boards as well! I need 48-hour days and an 8 day week, but often, when I think about this site, I’m deterred by the fact it runs so s-l-o-w-l-y on my computer. Otherwise I’d be back here a lot, because it certainly is a good place for intelligent discussion, with the moderators keeping disruptive elements away.

I’ve heard of the ‘stop’ method, but the trouble is that I have an underlying tendency to obsessive bad thoughts that can bother me so much I have to guard against them permanently. I beat the habit for several years at a time, but sooner or later something happens that I can’t resolve to my liking and I regrettably slip back into it, and I not only relive the incident that triggered the problem, but a lot of other garbage as well. And yes, Pendulum, I do have many good memories, but the need to tell someone from the past the things I wish I’d been able to articulate at the time can be compulsive! It’s the very worst habit I have, so the one I most want to be rid of!

As for doing happy things, I recently painted two horses, a palomino and a golden dun, that are the finest I’ve done to date and for a month or two I’ve been considering what kind of background is worthy of them. Although I never planned it, the horses now stand in grass full of flowers, with a galaxy of stars above their heads. Yes, I can immerse myself in something like that and still have disturbing thoughts nagging away!

Rosequartz, I’m not talking about the woman you have in mind, but this post is getting long, so I think I’ll say more next time.
[QUOTE=rosequartz;3844834]ooohhh this is a different woman? LOL do tell!
glad to hear you've painted some beautiful pieces of art! I'm not the least bit creative and i really admire people who are![/QUOTE]

Hi Rosequartz and everyone else,

Sorry I haven’t been back recently. I’ve joined a dating site, under another screen name from the one I use here, and the site runs at the speed of
m-u-d, (about 10 mins per page!) so I’m only too glad to escape the computer!

This incident was very long ago. You no doubt remember me saying that I’ve always had great difficulty in finding a boyfriend and realised this is probably because my father was very unkind to me but my mother went into denial and indoctrinated me with the idea I was in a happy family! So I grew up very wary of families in general and men in particular, and instead showered my love on a horse whom I finally managed to buy.

When I was 26 this much-loved horse dropped dead under me and I fractured my spine in the fall. At the time it was the worst thing that had ever happened to me, nevertheless I found many sound cheerful answers and was recovering very nicely (on both fronts) when an acquaintance came to visit me. She began by dwelling on how terrible it was to have a fractured spine. I wasn’t paralysed, but to listen to her, you would have thought it was the end of my active life, with no future of any kind in front of me! I tried every which way to get her to let me cheer up. Nothing worked. I told her that other visitors let me talk about cheerful things, but she seemed to think that was because they simply didn’t care! So she just kept repeating herself!

When I couldn’t stand the gloom any longer I tried to put it in perspective. My lovely horse wasn’t merely injured; she was dead! This woman could not grasp the fact that I was sad about the death of a horse! I tried to stop her from being so callous, but she has the impression that if she drummed heartlessness into me long enough and hard enough I should suddenly agree with her! I was actually dealing with my grief very well indeed in my own way, but of course all she did was to scrape my feelings raw, until I let out an exclamation of pain, and then she blamed me!

My mother stopped me from saying any more, so then this dreadful woman went on about how ‘hurt’ she was that I’d been ‘rude’ and not humbly grateful that Lady Bountiful had come to visit me and dictate how I should ‘recover’! (I was naturally very grateful for visitors who let me handle my feelings in my own way.) However, I was left feeling that even though I had the accident, Lady Bountiful’s feelings were much more important than mine, because she was privileged to complain while I was merely supposed to choke on my feelings with a fixed smile on my face!

Looking back, I see her as socially inept and having some private issue that made her need to believe she could ‘sort’ things for other people, who were accordingly ‘handed the script’ and expected to act their part regardless!

I appreciate Pendulum’s comment about everyone having had some kind of experience that they couldn’t resolve by a method that works for them. I was telling myself something along these lines and it did help me feel better about not reaching closure every time.

The event that broke this train of thought was another story from my more recent past. I met a new friend and somehow found myself telling her. And then I find myself thinking: ’Was it really [U][B]me [/B][/U]who did that!’ And my new friend came looking for me last week because she said what a positive influence I am.

Meanwhile today I was watching Monty Roberts on TV, talking about a horse whom he’d rescued from cruelty and trained to be a champion, and when he described the horse’s death, 26 years ago, he had tears in his eyes and his voice faltered. Long ago the mother of the friend who introduced me to horses put it perfectly; ‘No laughter without tears!’ :angel:

I'll tel you more about artwork another time, because people don't believe me what I say it's not talent that enables me to paint, but positive thinking!
Xanadu, I definately enjoy reading your posts, you put your thoughts down on paper so eloquently and clearly! Have you ever thought of writing as a career or part-time hobby? I can relate to your sadness on losing your horse. I'm an animal lover and have lost 2 dogs in my life and it was very hard. People that aren't animal people just don't realize that we've lost a beloved family member (the only family member you get to pick!)
Also people that are so negative like her just try to bring everyone else down too. I don't know if you ever saw Saturday night live. They have a skit on there called "Debbie Downer", and it's not even funny, it's so obnoxious, but we all know people like that.
[QUOTE=BigRed54;3858431]Personally, I would feel sorry for that woman and not let her thoughts invade my own space. She sounds like a sad, embittered person with a negative view on life. When confronted with the memories of her, just force yourself to think about how sorry you feel for her attitude, for her outlook on life, that you hope she is having a better time nowadays. Keep this up and make it a habit; it will chase the bad thoughts away.

You alone are responsible for your happiness. No one can take that away from you without your permission. You will encounter many, many different views and attitudes over your lifetime (I'm sure you already have!!!) and you are in charge of taking what you want out of those encounters.

I'm glad you found a creative outlet for your positive thinking! It sounds wonderful; I would dearly love to be able to paint the thoughts that are in my head!! Good luck! :wave:[/QUOTE]

Thanks, Big Red,

I'm thinking this through, because certainly problems with overcoming bad thoughts are something I've had to wark on a lot harder than some other people, to judge by the sound of it.

I certainly never go down this thought path unless something bad triggers one thing after another. Yesterday I had a very bad day, but thought that if I get a good night's sleep, I can look forward to today being much better. Indeed it has been!

On the other hand, the people who make life needlessly difficult can feel like this all the time! It was good to see Monty Roberts on TV last night. What has that woman missed because she has never permitted herself to love an animal?

More thoughts later... Someone wants to ring me and it's sure to be a great conversation!
[QUOTE=rosequartz;3857761]Xanadu, I definately enjoy reading your posts, you put your thoughts down on paper so eloquently and clearly! Have you ever thought of writing as a career or part-time hobby? I can relate to your sadness on losing your horse. I'm an animal lover and have lost 2 dogs in my life and it was very hard. People that aren't animal people just don't realize that we've lost a beloved family member (the only family member you get to pick!)
[/QUOTE]

Hi Rosequartz,

Thanks for saying you like my writing. I did have creative writing tuition in the past but was very unhappy with it all the time because I was forbidden to write about the things that interested me. There was a whole mindset that it was ‘smart’ to write what the group liked and ‘wrong’ to do your own thing! And that was in the bad old days of typewriters, which made it even harder! No simple ways of editing anything!

I cannot, simply cannot, sit at a computer too long, but I do in fact enjoy reporting on heavy horse shows, because I only have to write a couple of hundred words to earn my free pass to the show and be sure of one for next year as well. It also means that in the eyes of the heavy horse people I am not just another member of the public, but a friend they meet at one show after another. With this background I always feel everything that I write has to be expressed well, but give me a straight choice between writing and painting and I paint or sketch every time!

And, yes, I do indeed know that every normal person with a horse feels very sad if anything happens to the horse!

I’ve still had some more thoughts about this woman. It seems to me that explaining anything to her was a waste of time because she lacked the mental capacity to understand that her ideas weren’t the answers to sort my problems out, and my own worked so very much better! This was in spite of the fact that she had always seemed pleasant, previously. Maybe I should simply have repeated: ‘Will you please change the subject now!’ over and over again, and refused to say anything else until she finally gave up.

Would you like to hear the story that put me in a better frame of mind, please?
[QUOTE=rosequartz;3844834]
glad to hear you've painted some beautiful pieces of art! I'm not the least bit creative and i really admire people who are![/QUOTE]

Hi Rosequartz and everyone else, :wave:

I was going to tell you more about artwork, because so many people insist on telling me I am talented and they can’t paint or draw a thing.

All children draw and paint. I don’t believe I was any better than anyone else, but at the age when most folk say: ‘It’s no good! I can’t do this!’ I had the idea that I could draw. I don’t remember what I’d done that gave me this idea. The important thing was that I believed I could do it.

It all grew from there. I could tell you exactly how I came to discover my abilities after I’d left college, but the main point is that when other people say:’ I can’t draw a straight line!’ I said: ‘If I did it again it would be better next time!’ Somehow or other I happened on the way of observing my subject that enables me to draw what I am really seeing, as opposed to what I think I am looking at. Basically artwork is about a lot of skills that can be learned by anyone who is genuinely motivated, and they are all held together by positive thinking.

I didn’t even use this phrase at first. I would look at other people’s wonderful artwork, and instead of saying: ‘I’m not that good.’ I said: ‘I’m not that good yet!’ And I realised the significance of the last little word! :angel:

Is this relevant to relationships? Well, it makes a positive difference to my life and so it must be!





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