Why live in the past?

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Why live in the past?

Postby Exp. Date, the rat » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:36 am

Okay rather than divert the conversation from the “Early Memories” thread I thought I start another one.

I do have some instances in my past that were traumatic and mentally damaging for a time. So damaging I did try to commit suicide. Now I don’t know if I am different or just had a good support when I was young, but if I do concentrate on those memories, yes I could see the bad side and let them affect me now as an adult. But I say to myself, yes, I did have some tough times and I have learned from them and moved on. I have forgiven myself and those who did what they did to me and that is it and it is time to move on.

I see so many shows of people who had bad things happen to them too and it rules their lives and destroys them, why? It happened, you got through it, you healed from it and now move on. Right? Or am I being a b*st*rd about it.

I will shed some light on what happened. I was abused by a close member of my family, and I was teased very heavily at school. This lead me to suicide, luckily though I ‘woke up’ in time to stop myself and seek help.

So why do people wallow in their own misery and rise above it. Why do people dwell in the past so much that they destroy themselves and those around them?

To me the past is the past and you can’t change that, but the future is all about change and new opportunities.
Last edited by Exp. Date, the rat on Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Quark » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:41 am

I was teased very heavily at school


I know that feeling well. To be a bibliophile surrounded by shouting idiots... surely nothing else has made me quite so depressed. Especially if these are the kind of people who will one day be released into society.
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Postby Dotsie » Tue Feb 23, 2010 12:16 pm

I really am not an expert, but I would say that there are people who feel bad because bad things have happened, and people who feel bad for perhaps no reason, but they are ill and need medication to feel "normal" again. The former group might be better equiped mentally to get over the trauma they have experienced.

I'm glad you have both been able to put your problems behind you and move on. But I do feel for those who can't. :(
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Postby Tonyblack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 12:24 pm

What about veterans of war? People who have seen such horrific sights that they are suffering from post traumatic stress disorder? Are they "wallowing"?

It's not as simple as you seem to think. You may have moved on, but an awful lot of people can't. I know sufferers of PTSD and not all of them are veterans either. It takes years and years of therapy to move on in some cases and in other cases people never fully move on. I think the term "wallowing in their own misery" is a vast over simplification of a very complex disorder.
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Postby Exp. Date, the rat » Tue Feb 23, 2010 12:54 pm

Tonyblack wrote:What about veterans of war? People who have seen such horrific sights that they are suffering from post traumatic stress disorder? Are they "wallowing"?

It's not as simple as you seem to think. You may have moved on, but an awful lot of people can't. I know sufferers of PTSD and not all of them are veterans either. It takes years and years of therapy to move on in some cases and in other cases people never fully move on. I think the term "wallowing in their own misery" is a vast over simplification of a very complex disorder.


Honestly Tony, I didn't even think of PTSD and those types of people and situations. War is never easy and so are suffers of natural disaters like Haiti. I was thinking about more of a domestic thing.

What started tthis train of thought as well was an article I read about Lindsy Lohan and how she 'had to drink and use drugs to handle the dirty luandry that was aired by her Dad." Which is lame anyway. You just deal with it.

One of the reasons I love Kim is that she was verbaly and physically abused by her ex-husband for a while until she one day said to herself "enough" and walked out. Strong moral fiber that girl.

She said it was bad, but keep making yourself suffer about it. It happened and it's not happening anymore, and you know how to spot it if it does start to happen again. So you wont get into that situation again! Easy, see! :wink:

So aside from the horrors of war and HUGE MEGA disaters, I just don't understand why people need to keep themselves down about things. Use it as a learning tool and grow from the 'experiance' not cave in.

I know it is easier said than done, trust me I know, but it can be done.
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Postby chuckie » Tue Feb 23, 2010 1:02 pm

I would suggest reading Picking up the Pieces by Paul Britton.
He was a psychologist who treated some of the most damaged people in the UK. It is absolutely fastinating but makes rather uncomfortable reading.
He also wrote The Jigsaw Man which describes how he aided the police on some of the worst crimes committed in Britain.
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Postby poohcarrot » Tue Feb 23, 2010 1:38 pm

CBS News January 11 2010
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/01/ ... 3072.shtml
Extract
"He noted that of the 30,000 suicides each year in America, about 20 percent are committed by veterans."

6,000 Iraq and Afghanistan US veterans are killing themselves a year. That's 115 every week!
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Postby CrysaniaMajere » Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:10 pm

Exp. Date, the rat wrote: I just don't understand why people need to keep themselves down about things. Use it as a learning tool and grow from the 'experiance' not cave in.

I know it is easier said than done, trust me I know, but it can be done.

That's the point, some people can't believe it can be done, some people sometimes think it's not even worth to try, because everything's s**t so why even bother? That's bad reasoning, you're right, everybody should be as strong as you, but some people are not so strong, or maybe they believe they are not, with the same results.
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:46 pm

Any kind of abuse, whether it's low-key and subtle or full-blown PTSD with bells on, is not cut and dried and people handle things differently.

Some choose a permanent solution and anyone who's been there and been able to pull back from the abyss, knows how it feels. Just because the thing that drove them there may be judged in degrees of 'awfulness' that they've suffered, to that person their torment is huge and overwhelming - how else would they be driven to take their own life?

PTSD is NOT new. WW1 was a hideous, filthily immoral war that killed millions in terms of battefield casualities and, if you think about it, polluted and took any joy in life out of those who had managed to live through active service. Then again, probably many more who never held a gun or lived in a war zone were affected into the next generation even, because of having to cope with looking after those who had been through the hell of the trenches and been permanently maimed physically. Many, many more bore mental scars the rest of their lives and the people who loved them suffered with them. But they didn't have a fancy name for what they suffered back then and therapy was virtually unheard of except for the very, very, rich. I won't say anymore about that, but if you're interested in how veterans cope with war on that scale in context then I suggest reading Lady Chatterley's Lover and concentrate on Lady Chatterley's husband and not Mellors and Connie :roll:

Also a link HEREwhich is to a Dreamworlds thread, but pertinent to the D-day Landings and how one man had managed to survive the horror of that, by burying it so deep he could keep functioning, but never come to terms with what he'd been through... It is NOT explicit, but if this type of thing really upsets you then don't read it. But if you can bear to read it, it does sum up how those men could literally walk through hell and come back and achieve some kind of stability.

We are stronger than we think - and suicide, if it's serious and meant to succeed is, believe me, a very extreme, but valid kind of courage, no matter how 'trivial' the reason is for setting someone off on that path. I believe it is also the ultimate selfish and rejecting action a human being can contemplate, because your suffering may be concluded, but those who know and love you can be irrevocably hurt and devastated by that one brave, desperate action, taken when you are most definitely not in your right mind. Suicide as denegrated morally does not truly exist - it is not a 'crime', nor is it a cry for help. It is unbearable pain and madness.

I'll post another time on how other people are brave enough to walk away and carry on, but can I suggest that this thread title is changed to something a little less provocative please. I do appreciate the title was not meant to be offensive or dismissive and the topic itself is valid and of benefit to many people on this site, myself included :cry:
Last edited by Jan Van Quirm on Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby theoldlibrarian » Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:51 pm

The human psyche is an incredibly sensitive thing that can be damaged very easily. Some people can move on from things even partly if not entirely but others never can.
This is a bit different from what other people were talking about but I have a friend, when he was 20 his 18 year old brother died of a sudden heart condition and he has never been able to move on.
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Postby chris.ph » Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:37 pm

gulf war syndrome wasnt helped by the crap they pumped into us, i had every vaccine you could think of including anthrax and plague.
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:06 pm

(((hugs Chris)))
This is what I meant about WW1 - they used mustard gas and god knows what else against 'our chaps' and vice versa and the injuries were worse than dying for some of those poor blokes. There's a German artist called Otto Dix who was a 'normal' soldier whjo did a lot of drawing in WW1 and was a conscript non-combatant in WW2 and was in a concentration camp for a while. His post 1918 work is far more disturbing in tone than that of his war etchings which are bad enough - it was a terrible, terrible war and rewrote how the 'great nations' defend themselves - regrettably it did not seem to put our dear politicians and generals off war itself, but it made them think about how far they could go - for a while at least... :evil:
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Postby swreader » Wed Feb 24, 2010 1:52 am

Respectful Hugs for Chris and any other vetrans. Jan, you're absolutely right--in WW1 it was "shell shock", in WW2, they told them to put it behind them (as if they could), but war, or disasters are always Traumatic. And very much so for those who come to help. But whatever the cause, PTSD is pretty awful, and we are only, in this country, beginning to realize just how awful it is.

There are lots of others who suffer and struggle with depression which is a disease like diabetes or cancer or heart disease. One can treat it and hopefully llive with it--but it's not easy.

Ex. date - Would you be willing to change the title of the thread to something less dismissive. I don't think you intended to suggest what the title implies.
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Postby Exp. Date, the rat » Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:50 am

swreader wrote:Ex. date - Would you be willing to change the title of the thread to something less dismissive. I don't think you intended to suggest what the title implies.


I have since changed the title. I must admit that I did wonder what to call this thread. Is it better now?
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Postby poohcarrot » Wed Feb 24, 2010 3:39 am

(I'm bound to get into trouble for this comment. I always do!)

I think what X Date The Rat is trying to say is;

"What does not kill us, SHOULD make us strong."

Which I agree with 100%.

Excluding clinically-proven illnesses, nobody can deny that there are some people who need to have a more optimistic outlook on life. Some people like clinging to the past. Some people just like being miserable and need a kick up the bum to realise just how wonderful life is. You might fall back on the crutch of religion to get through the bad times, or you might be strong enough to cope on your own, or with friends and family. But you have to cope by whatever means it takes. That's life! Bad things will always happen. It's up to the individual to turn them into bricks for character building, because if they don't, they'll be weighted down forever. It's Darwinian. Sink or swim. You can't swim if you've got bricks tied to you.

(sits back and waits for the flak.)
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