Author Topic: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it  (Read 7108 times)

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QuestEon

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Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« on: January 27, 2012, 12:12:13 PM »
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Might be challenging for some parents here to read, but good points and good conversation all the way around in this thread...

Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it

It isn't about winning the debate. It's about the truth.

mikef

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2014, 09:41:32 AM »
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I'll just give a bit of background for my "defooing" of my parents and why I don't regret it.  By the way I'll use what's more commonly referred to as going Low Contact or No Contact.  I don't want to use Stefism's if I can help it.

I've been having problems with my parents forever.   I believe my mother has NPD.  She has all the traits.  She is special and perfect.  She never gets anything wrong or makes mistakes.  She is always right.   If someone else isn't getting along with her then that person has something wrong with them.  She kept our family isolated from our extended family, etc.

Having a person like this in your life is just incredibly stressful.  It wears you down and destroys your will to live.  By the time I hit 20 I'd lost hope and had my first big nervous breakdown.   Eventually, I was able to somewhat pick myself up and I think because I was young able to somewhat recover, get a qualification, get a job and then get out of the house and move into my own place.  I still saw my parents regularly though, but it was just wearing me down.  I found every visit I would be upset and drained of energy afterwards and the entire time between then and the next visit was me just trying to recover.  I still hadn't identified my mother as the problem, but it was something I was beginning to think about.

She was causing a lot of problems for my brother also who resorted to substance abuse in order to cope, but at this point I'd had enough and basically ran to the other side of the world figuring that would solve my problems.  It didn't.  I was still in communication with them through phone and email and that was enough for the poison to continue.  Eventually, I came back.  I decided to sell up and rent for awhile and figure out my next move.   I gradually was dropping off contact with my parents, trying to get to a point where I could handle the stress.  First, I started seeing them in person less often.  Wasn't working.  Then I stopped calling them.  Still not working.  Then I stopped emailing them.  Still no go.  By now I was down to 3 visits a year.  Basically birthday's and X-Mas and still it wasn't working for me. 

I ended up at this crazy point where I would get a fear response just from seeing my mother's name in my email box.  I feared getting a phone call from them so I would leave the phone off the hook or leave my mobile battery uncharged for long periods of time.  I also wouldn't check my email for weeks.  It was causing havoc in my life, as you can imagine, and eventually I just stopped being able to deal with the normal stresses of life and had another big nervous breakdown.  My brother rescued me and let me stay at his house.   

It was at this point that I decided to make the break.  For the simple fact that I was way beyond any capability to deal with my parents.  Looking back I don't know why I took as long as I did.  I think I was afraid of society and what people would say.  In that sense, Stefan's podcasts helped me get past that, though I also looked up professionals and others to see what they had to say.  But Stefan was the catalyst.

It's now been 2 years and I'm happy to be away.  Going back fills me with dread.  I actually realised I was suffering from many of the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  It was that bad and now, well into middle age, I'm trying to put my life back together.  A life I never really had.  But you only have one life and my parents, specifically my mother, were truly toxic.

I don't know this, but I think I'm probably in the minority with having to go No Contact with parents.  When I hear Molyneux talking to people on his shows about this it seems at best, to me, highly unprofessional and at worst controlling and abusive.

But for a certain percentage of adults in society, going No Contact with your parents or "defooing" if you like, is a necessary step.  I think at least a few attempts over a significant period of time should be made to talk things out beforehand.  In my case there were so many attempts at reasoning with my parents that I lost count and I went far too long and risked my own life in the process.

So, all I'm saying is, when it comes to defoo, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.  There are a few genuine cases.

Mike_Lice

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2014, 10:12:48 AM »
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Contrary to what you might think we are not against people who decide to stop seeing their parents. Just do it for the right reasons. Not because Stefan thinks its immoral to hang out with parents that vote democrat or made you go to church on sundays.

Prodigal son

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2014, 10:26:21 AM »
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I've been having problems with my parents forever.

I hear what you're saying here. After resuming contact a couple of years ago the path has become ever more difficult and I am necessarily forced into reducing contact to protect my health and self-esteem, although my problem is primarily with my father, who has never had any time for me whatsoever, and that is a painful thing to deal with on an ongoing basis.

I have a better rapport with my mother (although far from plain sailing) and I can't be bothered to re-defoo and I'm dealing with it all with the usual boundaries and so forth, though I can certainly see - in a more well-computed way than when I was merely following some third-party fantasy - that zero contact has its benefits.

In this matter I have decided, for now, to follow the Bible as far as I am able, although it pains me to honour people who omit to return the favour. I'm not claiming that my solution is the best one or that it will endure in eternity.

Peace

Elucidated

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2014, 01:07:54 PM »
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I was still in communication with them through phone and email and that was enough for the poison to continue..............

.........I ended up at this crazy point where I would get a fear response just from seeing my mother's name in my email box.  I feared getting a phone call from them so I would leave the phone off the hook or leave my mobile battery uncharged for long periods of time.  I also wouldn't check my email for weeks.  It was causing havoc in my life, as you can imagine, and eventually I just stopped being able to deal with the normal stresses of life and had another big nervous breakdown.  .   

Would you be prepared to expand? I'm curious as to what sort of things she would say to have you feel like this - feel free to tell me to mind my own business   :P


Kaz

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2014, 08:17:52 AM »
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Hey Mikef,

I get where you are coming from.  I've been talking since Liberating Minds about low/no contact and how it is nothing like an abusive defoo and that there are people who really do need to limit or cut contact to protect themselves from intransigent, destructive and disordered behaviour and do so with/after a lot of sorrow, pain and confusion. 

It's not just the personality disordered instigators; they would never be able to do the damage that they do without their fan club, enablers and flying monkeys.  Watch out, their circus can be just as, if not more damaging than they are and if you have children, just be aware that as soon as they are old enough to be more independent, the personality disordered will attempt to groom them, usually by bribing them with gifts and money behind your back in order to suck them into their sick games, which involve turning them against you. These people never stop, are masters at triangulation and other forms of psychological warfare and  will attempt to DARVO your attempts at healthy boundaries with their current audience.

« Last Edit: November 16, 2014, 08:25:34 AM by Kaz »
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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2014, 12:36:57 PM »
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Thinking about this thread it comes to mind that the word defoo and associated concept is reinforcing the idea that Mr Molyneux has something important to bring to the conversation, and I don't think he has, and also it refers to the specific conduct and practices Molyneux recommends.

The same degree of oftentimes seemingly conscious cruelty, a general trend to inflate the magnitude of events, the moral condemnation, separation from a broader group of people than just parents, and an extraordinary level of obsession with feelings (those of the defooer).

People have been "not seeing their birth families" since forever, for a huge variety of reasons. Sometimes I think they hardly notice it because distance and convenience are cited as reasons (and they are not entirely bad ones though perhaps not always entirely factual). Sometimes there may be some deep-held grudge that cannot be aired and so festers and creates a feud-like rapport and audible silence
Even lifestyle choices may trigger this sort of situation.

The degree of consciousness probably varies. Certainly the degree of focus does. When transport was dearer (not so long ago) and people travelled for work (since forever), lost contact was a matter of course and hardly raised an eyebrow among poorer people. Parents brought up their kids, clothed them and fed them, then sent them on their way. The State was increasingly offering its services to care for the aged (I'd sooner go to prison, as I have already explained in some other thread, because I think it would be more fun).

Now we have a renewed focus on the family and its importance. I think that's generally a good thing, although families have limitations and can be destructive. They are like hothouses that breed their homegrown flowers and viruses quite well. Like Kaz has suggested with that chilling description, they tend to become insular and incestuous (not literally)... unless perhaps they are really immersed in and interactive with a wider community with checks and balances, but I'm not sure how much of that sort of social structure currently exists in the world. I mainly see it in movies.

Ink out.

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2014, 01:03:51 PM »
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I haven't defood. I don't believe in fancy sounding poncy words either. And as far as I'm concerned, defoo is a poncy word.

I also haven't seen my remaining family for a few years. Haven't seen or spoken to my sister in almost 10 years and mother roughly 3 years. Father has been dead and cremated for nigh on 20 years. It simply does not bother or interest me.

Simple reason?

I have absolutely zero in common with them. Growing up as a child, there was absolutely no bond or any kind of interest shown by either parents to myself or my sister. My sisterf and myself also had virtually no involvement with each other. Oh the joys of growing up within a military family!  ::)

They are, for want of a better word, total strangers to me. So when people sometimes say to me why I don't see them I always reply "Do you interact with total strangers off the streets as if you know every detail about them, like they've been your bestest bestest friends since childhood? No, you don't".

They may as well be strangers walking past me in the street.

QuestEon

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2014, 01:27:23 PM »
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Thinking about this thread it comes to mind that the word defoo and associated concept is reinforcing the idea that Mr Molyneux has something important to bring to the conversation, and I don't think he has...

Actually, this is the most important thing anyone has ever said about defooing.
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Kaz

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2014, 03:37:08 AM »
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Thinking about this thread it comes to mind that the word defoo and associated concept is reinforcing the idea that Mr Molyneux has something important to bring to the conversation, and I don't think he has...

Actually, this is the most important thing anyone has ever said about defooing.

Agreed.

Just because you have left FDR, it doesn't mean that FDR has left you.

"Taking responsibility for something and self-blame are horses of two entirely different colors. The former is empowering; the latter is paralyzing." ~ John Rosemond, Ph.D

Kaz

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2014, 10:08:32 AM »
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Now we have a renewed focus on the family and its importance. I think that's generally a good thing, although families have limitations and can be destructive. They are like hothouses that breed their homegrown flowers and viruses quite well. Like Kaz has suggested with that chilling description, they tend to become insular and incestuous (not literally)... unless perhaps they are really immersed in and interactive with a wider community with checks and balances, but I'm not sure how much of that sort of social structure currently exists in the world. I mainly see it in movies.

Ink out.

Just to clarify, my post was not referring to families in general but families that revolve around extemely abusive family member(s).  It is often said that these families are like destructive cults, but I think this is backward; destructive cults are like abusive families.

Just because you have left FDR, it doesn't mean that FDR has left you.

"Taking responsibility for something and self-blame are horses of two entirely different colors. The former is empowering; the latter is paralyzing." ~ John Rosemond, Ph.D

Prodigal son

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2014, 06:30:37 AM »
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Just to clarify, my post was not referring to families in general but families that revolve around extremely abusive family member(s).  It is often said that these families are like destructive cults, but I think this is backward; destructive cults are like abusive families.

Yeah, I used my commas poorly and ended up attributing an idea that you had not actually expressed, although I think we have some common ground beneath our feet.

I perhaps differ in that I think these kind of practices exist to some extent in all families because, probably, our parents were not themselves parented "properly" and therefore project their frustration onto each other and onto their kids, to a greater or lesser degree (in some cases with tragic consequences).

To my mind it depends to some extent on how freely topics can be discussed within the family. If a family is indeed cult-like then it becomes far less so if it is permissible to challenge ideas and  speak openly about feelings and all that good old hippie stuff - because those are the things that are not permitted in cults.

I suppose if it is fully understood that a family with adult children has become, despite the unavoidable legacy of genetic connections and the pecuniary need to have a forwarding address for the will, a voluntary assembly of individuals that can be disassembled rather quickly, then family members might be encouraged examine their allegiance more thoroughly than is customary.

I don't think love is a passive state. If we love someone or want to love someone we need to step up to the plate rather than simply attempt to apply an appropriate tagline to our Christmas cards.
Love is a word and a concept that enjoys a great deal of public exposure but a smaller amount of private application (sez Prod, from 'is personal experience, which may be particularly unfortunate or cantankerous and hence defy universality and break with USB - my apologies to Lord M).

Prodigal son

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2014, 07:06:11 AM »
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Actually, this is the most important thing anyone has ever said about defooing.

I note that QE's journalistic penchant for sensationalism has slipped the leash again! I think what I said is true, but a great many folks have said some extremely important things about defooing so at most I have added another log to the palisade, or something like that... (although - like others - I have trod in the halls of our lord so I might have been energised by a modicum of His great vision)

CupOTea

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Re: Why I defooed, and why I don't regret it
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2015, 09:44:07 PM »
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I'll just give a bit of background for my "defooing" of my parents and why I don't regret it.  By the way I'll use what's more commonly referred to as going Low Contact or No Contact.  I don't want to use Stefism's if I can help it.

I've been having problems with my parents forever.   I believe my mother has NPD.  She has all the traits.  She is special and perfect.  She never gets anything wrong or makes mistakes.  She is always right.   If someone else isn't getting along with her then that person has something wrong with them.  She kept our family isolated from our extended family, etc.

Having a person like this in your life is just incredibly stressful.  It wears you down and destroys your will to live.  By the time I hit 20 I'd lost hope and had my first big nervous breakdown.   Eventually, I was able to somewhat pick myself up and I think because I was young able to somewhat recover, get a qualification, get a job and then get out of the house and move into my own place.  I still saw my parents regularly though, but it was just wearing me down.  I found every visit I would be upset and drained of energy afterwards and the entire time between then and the next visit was me just trying to recover.  I still hadn't identified my mother as the problem, but it was something I was beginning to think about.

She was causing a lot of problems for my brother also who resorted to substance abuse in order to cope, but at this point I'd had enough and basically ran to the other side of the world figuring that would solve my problems.  It didn't.  I was still in communication with them through phone and email and that was enough for the poison to continue.  Eventually, I came back.  I decided to sell up and rent for awhile and figure out my next move.   I gradually was dropping off contact with my parents, trying to get to a point where I could handle the stress.  First, I started seeing them in person less often.  Wasn't working.  Then I stopped calling them.  Still not working.  Then I stopped emailing them.  Still no go.  By now I was down to 3 visits a year.  Basically birthday's and X-Mas and still it wasn't working for me. 

I ended up at this crazy point where I would get a fear response just from seeing my mother's name in my email box.  I feared getting a phone call from them so I would leave the phone off the hook or leave my mobile battery uncharged for long periods of time.  I also wouldn't check my email for weeks.  It was causing havoc in my life, as you can imagine, and eventually I just stopped being able to deal with the normal stresses of life and had another big nervous breakdown.  My brother rescued me and let me stay at his house.   

It was at this point that I decided to make the break.  For the simple fact that I was way beyond any capability to deal with my parents.  Looking back I don't know why I took as long as I did.  I think I was afraid of society and what people would say.  In that sense, Stefan's podcasts helped me get past that, though I also looked up professionals and others to see what they had to say.  But Stefan was the catalyst.

It's now been 2 years and I'm happy to be away.  Going back fills me with dread.  I actually realised I was suffering from many of the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  It was that bad and now, well into middle age, I'm trying to put my life back together.  A life I never really had.  But you only have one life and my parents, specifically my mother, were truly toxic.

I don't know this, but I think I'm probably in the minority with having to go No Contact with parents.  When I hear Molyneux talking to people on his shows about this it seems at best, to me, highly unprofessional and at worst controlling and abusive.

But for a certain percentage of adults in society, going No Contact with your parents or "defooing" if you like, is a necessary step.  I think at least a few attempts over a significant period of time should be made to talk things out beforehand.  In my case there were so many attempts at reasoning with my parents that I lost count and I went far too long and risked my own life in the process.

So, all I'm saying is, when it comes to defoo, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.  There are a few genuine cases.

Mikef,  It's good to distance yourself from truly abusive people.  But I hope you reach out to your brother and other siblings if you have them.   I sure wouldn't want them to be left without a connection to you.  Just that attachment with you can be really healing.  And who knows what they've been through better than you.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2016, 10:50:32 PM by CupOTea »
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