Imagine if you will, two people with Posttraumatic Relationship Disorder, meeting the opposite person they were usually drawn to, yet forming a bond.
If you understand the disorder, we are drawn to people who are not good to us, and can’t seem to be with people who are.
My brother and I, even though we were raised in the same house, he and I didn’t share much common ground. He went his way at eighteen and I went mine.
Both victims of childhood abuse, we left home with our Disorder firmly in place and set out into the world fully packed for more abuse.
While he left home and got as far away from our family, its religion, the rules and beliefs of our parents, I settled in and set up a home life much similar to my parents, minus the pedophile.
We didn’t interact much with each other over the years, there wasn’t animosity, but nor was there a deep friendship either. We were two grown kids doing the best we could, coming from whence we came.
Somehow about 7 years ago, we began talking on the phone. It was sporadic in the beginning yet an odd but interesting exchange always happened. We began to explore and to seek a new and better God. We met again for the first time.
Shortly there after, he introduced me to yoga a well as new and exciting authors, and so began this most unusual relationship for us, the opposite of what our ‘disorder’ usually sought.
I now believe it was that fact alone that helped us the most. I wasn’t his normal cup of tea if you will, nor was he mine, yet by our seeing the ‘other-side’ we were able to see where we stood.
This may be hard to follow, but in my mind it is a clear as day.
Up and until the time we re-connected we had no one to show us where we were wrong due to our Posttraumatic Relationship disorder!
If you have a relationship disorder, you never really get to experience a ‘healthy’ relationship because the disorder won’t allow you to get there!
It is simply amazing to me that we stuck it out, well it wasn’t always easy, we did go for months of silence, and had moments of major disagreements, but one thing always remained in the midst of us in the past 4 ½, Reality.
Here we were two grown adult with this disorder or the affects of the disorder, learning to create or do a real relationship, the blind leading the blind.
Except that I could see what he couldn’t see and he could see what I couldn’t see, so we were the perfect pair!
I could see where his mind was confused and he understood perfectly where I had missed the mark. We both needed the other to make sense of where we were, and even to where we stood today.
Because of our similar childhoods with sexual abuse we were able to understand the unthinkable, to acknowledge the inner trauma and how it affects the body and mind.
Where my mind was closed, my body was wide open and held the fear, his body was closed but his mind wide open to remember.
I was continually amazed at our sameness, but the differences we carried. He remembered all, but his body was numb, my mind forgot all, but my body seemed to hold the memory alive.
As far back as I can remember my mind and body were at odds, I would not be alone with my father, yet I couldn’t tell you why.
On December 4th 2004, I had the answer to a puzzle of 46 years, I made sense, the full disclosure of my life came tumbling out, and with it the aftershocks that left me standing in a pile of rubbish that was my life.
The after affects were the knowing that I was with people who hurt me and couldn’t be with people who didn’t, that my whole system seemed to working backwards and upside down.
The disorder had made such a mess of my world, I had a lot of relationships to rework or let go of, and in the midst of that my brother and I were both affected personally as well as a unit.
Our new relationship was going to be tried over and over and each time we were forging new boundaries and learning how to be with someone in a new way.
He taught me and I taught him, together we stood true to ourselves and our inner truths, we challenged our minds and sought to reclaim a new reality, we shared books and new authors, to the millions of insights that would startle us and have us sitting back in our chairs, the volumes of ways we had it so wrong.
It wasn’t a teacher and a student relationship although it was, we just kept changing chairs, sometimes I was being taught and others I was the teacher, it never seemed to matter which, if it was our time to be the student we welcomed the others great wisdom, and when it was our time to lead, we did so with the greatest respect.
He thanks me in his blog, “Sister of Kindness” and I was beginning this blog at the same time. Yet in it’s place came the blog about the Posttraumatic Relationship Disorder.
I began a blog and was trying to share how we were the same but the opposites, how we connected in the most unlikely way, and how it was that we carried each other to the finish line while running the same race, and it seemed nearly impossible to write, but now I can see that I had to first read about the Disorder in Dr. Mona Lisa’s book, who we were and why.
I didn’t have such a fancy name for our dysfunction, but I knew intuitively that we were the perfect opposites to make our way through.
We have literally shared millions of hours on the phone, each in our own personal hell, sorting and labeling, tossing out and lamenting at each new loss, elated with each new freedom and fragment of self we discovered.
If you can picture two lost souls buried under a mountain of rubbish, weakened and in total confusion, working in starts and stops to become free to stand tall and walk alone towards brighter future, that is who we are!
The mountain of stuff we had to sort out whether it be in the reality of now or in the messed up past or in the vaults buried deep and out of sight in our minds, we have traveled great distances to get where we are today, and greatest feat is to figure out the messes of the mind.
How do you do that? How do you even begin to begin to begin sorting when you don’t even know that what is in your head is wrong?
Our messes were created or began by little children, left alone in our minds without adult supervision, so we created and labeled and sorted out things as a child would, but then called it our truth.
That inner truth was a beacon that led us down roads most would fear to go, in places and with people that were as messed up as ourselves.
It is indeed amazing that you become color blind to the fact that you are both a mess. There is no one healthy person to compare your self too, no bright light of normal.
Normal too is a fallacy for what is normal? I have always said I went in search of normal but way overshot the mark.
I am not normal in the general definition, but I am way normal for me.
I am normal to me and my brother is normal to me, coming from the road we have been on, we are perfectly normal.
We are the perfect example of two souls caught up in the disorder and the perfect pair to tag team and to work ourselves free.
What a journey my brother and I have been on, one that required the fearless, a seeker of the truth no matter how shocking it was.
We stood bravely and with courage without any idea what we stood against. We were walking into a mad mad mind!
A journey with my brother, wow what a road we have been on. Thank you brother for being there, for being you and for walking the path you had to walk, because of it I can see.
When you think that all your pain and suffering was for naught, it wasn’t, it was all for me.
There is no word big enough, just Gratitude of you.