Fear

* Detailed instructions for making comments are in “News Items.”
* Looking for people who have been used as breeders in a cult setting for submissions for an anthology I hope to put together. Even if you have not been abused this way, could you spread the word and tell all your survivor friends and therapists or pastors about the project? They can write me at rahome@ra-info.org for more information. Thank you so much!
* If you are concerned about being tracked through your search engine, here is one that, unlike even duckduckgo.com, is encrypted https://www.searchencrypt.com/

Fear

There are some emotions which have been with me for the better part of my life – or perhaps every single day of my life. I call them constant companions. Guilt, pain, and fear come instantly to mind. I talk more about physical pain than emotional pain these days because, as my emotional pain decreased thanks to antidepressants and hard work on my cult past, my physical pain has grown, thanks to osteoarthritis. Both kinds of pain, though, are tough to live with 24/7.

Fear also is really hard to live with. It permeates every facet of my life, sometimes subtly, sometimes ferociously. It feels like a cage, boxing me in and preventing me from exploring life freely. It’s much safer sitting home alone with my computer or a good book and experiencing life at a distance.

It’s embarrassing at times. I cringe when I say I am phone phobic and many times I don’t say anything, I just grit my teeth and push through. When the fear starts mounting toward panic, I say something like, “I’m almost talked out” and end the call. It’s embarrassing to be late for an appointment because I got lost even though I had driven the route many times. I am always afraid of getting lost, and sometimes the distraction of anxiety makes my fear come true. So I allow myself extra time just in case but sometimes I don’t allow myself enough time to reorient myself.

When I get into the car, I whisper to myself, “It’s okay if I get lost. I have a full tank of gas, several maps, a GPS on my iPhone, and a charge card. And if worst comes to worst, I can ask for directions.” That’s reassuring, but not reassuring enough to totally take away the anxiety.

When the memories were flooding me, I became so agoraphobic that it took courage to go from one room to another in my own home. When you shake going to the bathroom or into the kitchen to cook dinner, that’s really agoraphobia! After all these years, it still happens when I am in flashback mode.

I figured out that I felt safe where I was because nobody was hurting me at the moment and I could see that I was alone. But I could not see all of the next room from where I was and danger might be just around the corner. In the flashback, I had one foot in the present and one in the past. My adult mind knew there was nobody else in the house but my little-girl terror had no such assurance. I felt quite a bit better when I figured that out, but it still was frightening to move from one room to another.

These are just a couple of examples of how fear interferes with living my life fully. I try to figure out what caused the fear in the first place (often easier said than done) and by soothing self-talk and reality checks. Sometimes I am successful, sometimes not. I try and push through the fear, but sometimes I just give in to it. That’s okay – I can’t spend all my precious energy on fighting battles that just pop up again in an hour.

It comes down to choosing between three ways of handling fear: figuring out the cause, talking myself through it, and giving in. And there are two ways of giving in: pushing the fear aside by avoiding looking at whatever is frightening me and allowing myself to sit still and pay attention to the fear, letting it wash over me. It’s reassuring to know that if I do nothing except feel the fear it will eventually turn into something else.

Frank Herbert said it eloquently in “Dune.”

LITANY AGAINST FEAR

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.

I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past
I will turn the inner eye to see its path.

Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.

Upcoming Holidays

June
6/21 Summer Solstice

6/23 Midsummer’s Eve/St. John’s Eve
6/28 Full moon

July
7/4 Fourth of July/US Independence Day

7/25 St. James’ Day/Festival of the Horned God

7/27 Full Moon

August
8/1 S N Lammas/Lughnasadh

8/26 S Full moon

Dates important to Neo-Nazi groups
6/6 D-Day: invasion of France in World War II
(Some groups also mark Candlemas, Beltane, Lamas, Halloween, solstices, equinoxes, and full moons.)

13 thoughts on “Fear

  1. I am replying late but I have been afraid to write about this post- ha ha!
    Some of my fears become harder the older I get. Some I will not even allow myself to think about- like an appointment I had this AM- I was scared but I did it anyway and the Social Worker I met with was really nice. Now I have to drive somewhere and directions are a little complicated. Fear. Btw, those orange poppies are so dreamy and make me think of Orange Creamsicles.
    Hugs,
    Briana

    Like

    1. I’ve nevr quite figured out why emotoinal stuff can get harder as I get older/You would think after all that work I’ve done..I know, it just means got are at a deperlevel, more awful memories, or more complete understanding or fuller understanding of the emotions at the time that are now resurfacing. But it still puzzles me.

      I love California poppies. I have one plant in my garden that reseeded. I can never get them to grow from seed.

      Like

  2. *grateful nods* we’re not alone 💖 I can so relate – I try to push myself to leave the house each day (most days I have to these days as we have roughly 6 to 8 appointments a week lol) but I know if I don’t, it will be that much more difficult for me the next day —- and most days I stay in the living room when Taz is at work because of the fear with going from one room to another – Poor guy gets texts quite frequently of “I need to go potty” so he can helpp me find the courage to go into the bathroom :-/ There’s so much I think that people that don’t get it, find baffling :-/
    Libby

    Like

    1. Oh my word, until I wrote that I thought that I had it bad going from one room to the next and hesitated for fear you guys would think me nuts. Nobody had ever told me they had the same problem. And I am so grateful that I posted it and discovered it wasn’t just me!!!!

      That fear of being thought crazy goes deep, doesn’t it? Thank you so much for posting this!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I need to write it up for you Jean. I’m sorry

    Pennsylvania AG report about 6 Catholic dioceses has been put on hold

    We are all devastated

    Judith

    I was a breeder

    Thank you for all you do

    Sent from my iPhone

    Like

    1. Don’t apologize. It’s heavy to write about it, and it’s not like there is a deadline coming up next week. So put your needs first!

      I’m so sorry about that disappointment. Let’s hope it is only on hold for a short time.

      Like

  4. Hi ladies- You can add me to the club of agoraphobia. Jean, you sound just like me. I was …..scared?……the day I went down to the kitchen and round myself shaking and a panic attack coming on. In my kitchen!

    Why do we have to suffer so at our age?! It’s absurd! They screwed us our entire lives. Did they plan that?

    I had to drive for 2 hrs today to go to the interviews for kidney donor. It was the first time in ages that I dared go that far. I have Driver whom I rely on very much. I start my journey with asking him to make sure we get there safe. He is very smart. Luckily he was with me today cos there was a pile up accident in the making right in front of me and he turned us away and out of harm just in time. Thank you very much Driver!

    During the interviews with 4 different docs, social workers etc for the donor program, I had to tell them everything. The social worker was a wonderful woman and right on top of things. I never said I was a multiple, but I found myself talking as ‘we’d. Don’t know if she caught on.

    I am not compatible for the woman I planned on donating too.. It’s very sad as I was her last hope. Come next Weds I will find out if they will put me in the database if all the docs, etc agree I’m a good candidate.

    One of them asked me about how I felt if they didn’t accept me. Immediate response was that I was so pissed at my father for fucking up my entire life!! I can’t even give a part of me to give another a good life cos he got me into that fucking cult. Bastards.
    I told the social worker that all I want to do is live. Have a “life”. It doesn’t sound that any of us are actually “living”.

    “Litany of “Fears” is awesome!

    And Jean, your not chicken…….You’re a toad with tits……. 😄

    Hugggss and blessings to all!!!
    Tracy

    Like

    1. I’m so sorry you weren’t compatible. After all that anticipation, you must be devastated. And then the long drive on unfamiliar roads and the grueling interviews you went through. I know how much it meant to you and hope they can find another possible match for you soon. I think you are very brave each step of the way. How are you doing with the let down??

      Your Driver sounds like my Driving Fairy! Maybe in another plane there is a school for driving assistants for people like us. That would be nice!

      Folks, I once in writing Tracy said something sucked toad tits. Seems to have made an impression on her. I won’t comment on chicken tits for fear of starting something else. LOL

      Like

  5. Here is the answer you posted.

    And I guess I have sat in my fear and it turned to anger…for a split second…then it always turns into depression and despair. Anger is another issue I have worked on but could not and still can’t feel. I can’t even yell. Anger turns my stomach. I was never allowed to be angry for my first 19 years. I learned very quickly the consequences of being angry. Odd isn’t it? I can feel outrage for injustices done to other people…for a brief moment and then feel hopeless and unable to do or say anything. This makes me feel chicken and shame.

    Jean
    june 20, 2018 at 5:33 pm
    We sound very similar, don’t we? How often we feel we are the only one, or the only one who has had for problem for years and years and there it still is. I have to admit that after I posted it, I thought “Oh I must have been doing something wrong to still be suffering this much. Or else I am just a chicken!”

    About “there is nothing to fear except fear itself” well, I guess they didn’t have our childhoods of PTSD. Or complex PTSD. Almost everything was terrifying. There is a lot less for me to fear today, but I suppose they could come after me even after all these years of leaving me alone.

    But it is true, that if you sit with a feeling long enough, it chnages. Often fear changes to anger or anger changes to fear.

    Like

    1. I also think anger is hard because we saw the awful things others did when they were angry and we don’t want to do those things. So it feels dangerous for ourselves and for others. And we freeze.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh Jean, I totally understand the kind of fear you talk about. Fear has prevented me from doing so many things in my life and all of my life. I never asked questions in school because I was afraid to let anyone know how much I didn’t know. Somehow I made it to college but the same fear consumed me. I quit halfway thru my junior year for I was afraid of student teaching( for some reason I thought I could become a teacher).
    Then when memories started pouring out when I was 30 it was so hard to leave the house for work and eventually led to a hospitalization for mental health reasons. I had some relief over the years but I totally get feeling agoraphobic. I put my living room couch in front of my door a few times for I was convinced someone unsavory was looking for me.

    For almost 2 years I was afraid to drive in the dark…not because it was hard to see…I was just afraid of the darkness. I still struggle with that but am able to force myself when it is absolutely necessary(so not very often).

    I still don’t like to go out of my room at night even if all the lights are turned on. I wait until it is painful to hold it any longer before I can force myself to take the short walk from my bedroom to the bathroom.

    I am getting better at talking myself into going out. I have some commitment to get out of the house 4 days out of the week.
    But even then I have to convince myself to go. Even for something I enjoy doing.
    Sometimes I don’t even know why I am afraid. At those times, when I can remember, I take deep breaths and that can help calm down the fear.
    I could never put my mind around the saying ” there is nothing to fear except fear itself” for there was always something to be fearful of for me.

    Thank you for writing about fear. It is a constant in my life that I am working on. It helps me feel less crazy reading about someone else’s experience.

    I also like the ” Litany of Fear”.
    It made me really look at my own fear. I’m afraid to look at the cause up close because I already know what caused a lot of my fear…just tired of fighting it. I don’t know how to let it wash over and thru me. I just know it eventually gets better with self talk.
    I’ve probably said the same things over and over. I just can’t seem to say exactly how I feel about fear. Thanks for listening.
    Doris

    Like

    1. We sound very similar, don’t we? How often we feel we are the only one, or the only one who has had for problem for years and years and there it still is. I have to admit that after I posted it, I thought “Oh I must have been doing something wrong to still be suffering this much. Or else I am just a chicken!”

      About “there is nothing to fear except fear itself” well, I guess they didn’t have our childhoods of PTSD. Or complex PTSD. Almost everything was terrifying. There is a lot less for me to fear today, but I suppose they could come after me even after all these years of leaving me alone.

      But it is true, that if you sit with a feeling long enough, it chnages. Often fear changes to anger or anger changes to fear.

      Like

    2. shoot, I lost my answer.

      We sound a lot alike, no? After I hit “post” I thought I must be doing something wrong to still be so frightened after all this time.

      About” there is nothing to fear except fear itself” – guess pple who say that didn’t have childhoods like ours or PTSD or complex PTSD.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s