Thursday, July 19, 2007

Confusion leads to anger... will anger lead to hate?

Enough sitting around looking at the hedges... My stress bucket is overflowing; time to relieve some of the emotions.

I am angry at my brother - what he did was horrible and impacted my life in so many ways; still impacts how I view my body and intimacy. I've had to and continue to work so damn hard on healing from what he did to me when I was an impressionable pre-teen.

And yet, I see him as he is now - a man in his mid-30s, father of 4 beautifully amazing girls, husband to a woman with Crohns (among other medical problems,) seemingly devoted, dedicated, adoring and caregiving...

I can't help but wonder why he ever touched me the way that he did. Why did he molest me?

Is this a mask that he wears - this seemingly saintliness? Or is this the real thing - a man who regrets his actions and attempts atonement?

My heart leads me to believe that he is the real thing - he truly regrets the torment he put me through and lives his life as "good" as he possibly can to somehow, someway make up for the pain he caused me, his only sister.

When I first discussed these events with John, my therapist, I had said that I wanted to know why Tom molested me. He replied that there was no good reason for what he did to me. "It was all bad."

Absolutely true.

But a part of me would like to have that dialogue with Tom - someday in the distant future. I think I deserve to know why the hell he didn't think about what he was doing; why he cared so little about me; why he treated me as less than human. I wonder if knowing his not-ever-going-to-be-good-enough reasons will ease my anger? I wonder if knowing why, from his perspective, will help me heal...

But then, there was no good reason for him molesting his younger sister. None. Nada. Zippo. Zilch. Zero.

So would hearing any reason help me feel less anger? Or would it just piss me off more to have validated that there is no good reason?

I feel so angry. I have every right to. John said that I may always be angry and that is absolutely okay.

So why do I want to get rid of my righteous anger?

Because my brother is a nice

I hate that. It would be a hundred times easier if he was slimy or cruel or evil.

But he isn't. There is good in him, and damnit, he lets it show.

So, is anyone surprised that I feel for Padme and Luke?**

* I've been watching a lot of Star Wars lately. For those in the dark, my main man, Yoda, says "Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering."
** Even though Darth Vader did some terrible things, Padme and Luke believed that there was good in him and could be turned back to the light.


Carla said...

I don't think there is anything wrong with being angry, sweetie. But there is if it controls your life.

John seems to really know his stuff...I'm impressed.

æ said...

My husband and I were talking recently about my abuser and how my husband wishes we could find him. He said something like "I don't care if he's married, I don't care if he's a saint, I don't care if..."

because no matter what he's doing now, it doesn't change what he did then. What he DID to me.

Just like your brother doesn't get to "not" be that guy because he seems so saintly on the outside now.

If you decide you want to confront him with your anger, you get to. If you decide you don't want to, you don't have to. The deal is, no matter what he's doing now, YOU get to call those shots.

And thank you for your recent support Jeanne. It means a lot to have people around who get it.


Sarah said...

I can't add anything to what ae said. But I'm glad you have your husband, and John, to support you, and I am On Your Side.


Jeanne said...

Hey, carla - so far and luckily, the anger hasn't taken over my life. Of course, one of my many skills is compartmentalization... although, this skill has (and can) be used for evil as well as good (namely my ED.)
John is a pretty awesome guy. I'm glad I found him when I did, although I often wonder how much quicker I could have recovered had I found him three years ago (instead of less than a year.)

Jeanne said...


You sound just like John. (I just know you're going to be the most awesome counselor out there - once you graduate. ;-)

At my last session, he told me that my brother's feelings are irrelevant. He was the one who did wrong; I'm the innocent party here. I can ask for whatever I need. No explanations necessary.

Aside from being in the right, there is also another card I have in my hand, which my brother has to know that I have. That is that my parents don't know what he did to me. Of course, I don't think my parents would ever believe me if I told them... but he doesn't know that. He also doesn't know that I'd never put my parents in a position where they would have to choose between their children (mainly out of fear that I would lose.)

But what he doesn't know for sure, can only help me stay in my position of power. A place in which I'm not exactly comfortable, seeing as how I'm rarely in it.

And, ae - ditto. It really is good to have people around who get it. I envy your strength, ae.

Jeanne said...

Thank you, Sarah. I'm thankful for all the support I have in my life, from Todd, from John, and from you and everyone who reads this blog. With all of you on my side, how can I possibly fail? 8-)

æ said...

I really appreciate your kind words.

And I want to say that even if there weren't something you had that your brother doesn't (this keeping it from your parents), you would STILL have your power now.

You have your power by virtue of being an adult, not living there, being self-supporting, having John and your family, etc.

Your brother owes you graciousness NO MATTER WHAT. And if he HAS really changed, well good, he knows what he owes you. And if he HASN'T changed, well screw him, and I'm glad he has no control over you any more. If you were to tell your parents, it should come from you wanting to. That's all. It should come from you feeling like it was good for you.

What was good for your brother ruled your world for too long, damn him.

lots of support, and lots of gratitude for your support and understanding.


Jeanne said...

Thanks, ae. You're right - I am always in power (see my latest post. ;-)