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ZenPaladin

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About ZenPaladin

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    Male
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    California, USA
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    Eastern spirituality, martial arts, reading, comics, movies, anime, history
  • More About Me
    Aspie(on the spectrum), a nerd and proud of it

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?
    Agnostic/Zen Buddhist

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  1. The girl who had cheated is technically from a Catholic family but not serious about it. The girl who posted about her marriage today I know had said she was Christian though.
  2. So what made me ask this question is that looking at some of the people I went to high school with, I'm seeing this become a bit more common. Now originally I had felt a bit of jealousy at seeing former classmates(graduated HS 2 years ago) on social media with their SOs, saying how much they loved them etc. But now with some of the people I have seen, it does make me both grateful that I'm focusing on sorting my life out(improving health, prepping to move out) but also curious as to what the motivation is. I was just scrolling through my Instagram feed and saw that a girl I followed(acquaintance from high school) is married now. Keep in mind I recently turned 20 and graduated 2 years ago on June 8th, so the senior class is around the same age. Now I don't say she was married in terms of me being upset. I have no feelings for her and was just one of her followers. The guy she got with wasn't someone I recall going to our school. Then there was another girl who actually graduated the year before me but who I talked to a bit some time after I graduated. I had gotten back in touch with her during the quarantine to just talk(again no feelings with this one) and apparently she's engaged too, to a guy she met on Snapchat. And then a guy I hung out with during senior year did apparently date a girl since at least prom, and like lots of other people they had their IG posts spending time together and such. But then back in November, he messaged me that they were no longer together because she had cheated on him for another dude that she also got hitched with. She had become gradually more distant over time, said that it WASN'T cheating and sent him pictures of her and her new guy. It really got to him during this quarantine when I was talking to him again as he was already in therapy for some other stuff in his life and once asked if I would message her to ask if she hated him to which I declined. I don't look down on them by any means. It's their decision and I hope things work out for them. But I think I once heard the younger you marry the more likely you are to divorce. And I can kinda see why that would be likely. I mean, being just two years or so out of HS means there's alot of life you haven't lived or had some crucial educational experiences in regards to being an adult. And I figured you'd have to know someone for a few years at least before making such a big decision. But hey to each their own, though this does make me feel better about waiting and being patient with this. I had told someone else how this had made me envious before, and they had responded that social media only shows the ''highlight reel'' and most of these relationships are fleeting. Thoughts?
  3. Very good points, especially on the last part. I feel a bit better now but hopefully it won't take too long for things to be tomwhere I am in a position to pursue someone.
  4. For now I'm just focusing on finishing EMT training and moving out. But even then I don't have much faith in those, but who knows?
  5. Hiya, hope you all are well. As many may know, the quarantine has not only left many people sick or dead and without jobs, but it has also impacted people's mental health due to the isolation, especially those who already were dealing specifically with feeling disconnected from other people, for me with Asperger's. But one thing that has been eating at me recently is the fact that I'm single and may still be for awhile. So growing up, parents had issues and fought alot, this turned up to 11 in middle school with confrontations that were more physical and me and my sister getting into it, and I was super awkward and cringey during middle school leading into high school. So thus, I never had a girlfriend or kissed a girl, and it is something my mother and a few family members have commented on throughout the years. But even while I don't care much about their input(and I find dating in MS/HS to be overrated, too much drama) I find that I don't really like the fact that I'm single. And to be clear, I have had issues in the past with codependency in terms of trying to form friendships and investing too much self esteem into middle school crushes, so I know that's not what I want in a relationship. But even so, after graduating high school, my life was mostly just screwing around in community college and working, until I started doing an EMT program that I am almost finished with(classes are in hiatus. Family drama still occurred, including my sister being hospitalized for an overdose attempt and my dad trying to fight me in her hospital room. So suffice to say I have been planning to move out, of course finishing my EMT program and certification because I'm tired of the emotional burden of the dysfunction that I've dealt with since childhood and it leaves me with subtle resentment and anger at my family, and is just generally emotional baggage. It makes being single worst since one of the main things I hear is ''you have to be happy by yourself first, love yourself, etc'', but really that makes me feel worst. For one thing, it feels hypocritical to an extent because most or at least alot of the people who say this are either in a relationship or have been before, so it's easy to say that when you already have a SO or have gotten that kind of attention(waiting on dinner is easy when you've had a snack, I once heard). Even my therapist(cool guy) who also said this to me, is in a relationship himself. Secondly, part of me wonders why would anyone be with someone else if you didn't feel you needed them? I know that being controlling or wanting to be with your partner 24/7 isn't good, and having your own interests and passions is important too. And I know the whole ''entitled nice guy/incel'' archetype you see in Hollywood is pretty terrible too. I definitely have things I want to do (EMT job, regular college, martial arts, etc) but still it feels more isolating and depressing than it already is that I have to ''keep waiting'', but yet still see former high school classmates on social media posting pics of having good times with their friends but also with their boyfriend/girlfriend saying how much they love them etc. All in all, it's just not good to deal with on top of everything else, and while finding friends and having a life is a priority for me, having someone that loves you in that way would definitely feel good...
  6. I have some news, not sure yet to say if it's good or bad. So awhile back after I told my therapist about what happened with my ex-friend Simba(used and manipulated me and allegedly molested my younger sister), he had to make the mandated report to the authorities? Well, less than a couple weeks ago we got a letter in the mail from the police department of our old city addressed to my sister. Now when I was venting to my mother after my sister's last outburst, I don't think I said I told the counselor about Simba. but anyway, my mom just called me a few minutes ago(she and my sister went to Vegas to help/visit my grandparents) and she said a detective from our old city already talked to my sister and was gonna call me at some point for my side of things. TBH, I would be lying if I said part of me wasn't scared shitless. I don't say this to say I don't necessarily want justice for my sister, but it is bringing up things I had been trying to move past. I mean, I had figured that nothing would really come of this and life would move on, but it could seem to be the opposite now. And when I first shared my experiences on here (including Simba) I know I said that there was some dumb shenanigans with girls and such. It was kinda similar to what you see from entitled nice guys/incels on TV and movies but instead of dates, it was me lending him my phone to text my crushes(all 3 he somehow knew closely), a couple of those ''plans'' like you see in the TV episodes where someone has a crush and tries to woo them, etc. For the church girl I had liked, there had been a couple of times I waited outside the youth group to talk to her and ask her out(again after she turned me down once) and the youth pastor did say it made her uncomfortable. It was an idea Simba had, but I take responsibility for it and did apologize to her and we made up and were still friends when I was there and it wasn't an issue anymore. And in general in middle school I was fucking awkward, had a shitty sense of boundaries and was admittedly seen as kinda off putting and clingy and I had told this to Simba. I'm not excusing what inappropriate mistakes I did male, but it was not a good time in my life as my parents were fighting alot, dad was the worst of it being unsupportive, in and out of the house and kinda abusive and mom didn't know what she was doing, none of which was a good influence for me or my sister who also fought harshly at times. Simba and the shenanigans looking back, were my way of trying to find some source of acceptance or goal reaching outside of being into church at this time as I needed escapism from the turmoil of home. I know in therapy(been attending for a few months) there is alot of talk about self forgiveness and love and such, but right now I'm just reminded of what Simba had said when I had called him out, how he was gonna ''expose me'' even though the mistakes I made were not anywhere near sexually assaulting someone, and I don't say this as a downplay of my actions but only reality. But I do wonder about what he may say or how he may frame things to turn it back on me. I never knew he did anything like that to my sister until she told us years later, and it was heartbreaking. I'm already a bit stressed about when I can finish the EMS program and if I pass as well as still figuring out how to move out and start truly living life, but this not only complicates things but I also wonder how it could affect my family considering the tension. And it can be even more isolating than it already is since due to the qurantine, socializing is mostly zilch and for a person on the spectrum that's almost like a kryptonite. And I still sometimes feel regret with my past mistakes and sometimes questioning how good a person I really am. Sorry for the rambling, but this was a curveball I didn't see coming.
  7. Thanks, older. I will say that it isn't really a specific desire to upset me, but rather the family is just very dysfunctional. Good tips, my therapist gave similar advice.
  8. Hey yall. So to give you the gist of my current situation, I have been plotting to move out from my mom's for some time. If you haven't seen my other posts, here's the rundown of things: Mom and dad had a fuck ton of dysfunction, things got bad in middle school with major altercations and arguments, with my old man being real shitty to me and me and my sister both having anger problems and being at each other's throats. My sister also has a history of attempts at self harm and even suicide and running away, one of the times she was hospitalized my father tried to attack me just because I tried to stop an argument between him and my mom in the hospital room. So suffice to say I've been wanting to GTFO of dodge. Really I've been kicking myself in the ass for not solidifying a solid plan after graduation high school but the hospital incident was the kick in the ass I needed in order to start seeing that something has to give. Here's a rundown of a few things: -Currently, I am in the second part of my EMT program, after which if I pass the class I am eligible for the certification process. My mom, despite having her issues, was right in pushing me towards this program(she's a nurse) as my desired career is to be a game warden/park ranger and she told me to get a professional skillset. And looking at some ambulance services near where I want to move to, a couple of them advertise flexible scheduling for students and full time employees do get benefits which I figure I will need if I planning to be independent. The pay ranges from $15hr-$22 depending on experience level. -Just today, I took my mom's second car she lets me drive and got the smog check, and it passed. My mom then said that tomorrow we can go have the car put in my name and it will be my responsibility. The only thing is that I will still be under her insurance unless I were to move somewhere else under which I would have to get my own. I technically pay the insurance by giving the money to her, but it would be more expensive when it's just on me. -In terms of college, after my EMT program I want to get on my pathway of working on an associates transfer degree. My financial aid is covered by Department of Rehabilitation(I'm on the spectrum) fortunately. In terms of where to live, my plan is to do something like what my cousin and her friend did. In my senior year of high school, they lived with us renting out our downstairs guestroom. I've seen similar advertisements on Craigslist in the area I plan to move to, some near the CC I've looked to attending, and their are $700-$800 options that do include both rent and utilities, which I can manage with smart budgeting and such. -When the quarantine hit, it really disrupted things as I had just started a part time warehouse job that was decent pay and hours for a student, and my EMT classes were moved online then put on hold. It was frustrating, but I did still do DoorDash and UberEats to scrap together some savings and filed for unemployment benefits. My debit card came today from unemployment came is over $1500 in funds. I do plan to save most of that but us a bit to pay for a couple of things the car needs. So that gives you a rundown of where I'm at. The main thing I'm conflicted over is being able to either move out secretly/discreetly. For one thing, after another confrontation with my sister I did confess about secretly seeing a therapist and planning to move out after my EMT program. It isn't something that's come up again but it's still evident I'm distant with my family. Also, my family situation have involved plenty of times, especially with my father, having a major outburst/fight/argument and afterwards there being apologies and promise of change only to go back to the same bullshit at one point or another. My dad especially, the last time saying ''we have to let go of the past'' and my mom saying I need to be ''forgiving towards him'', when he has been an asshole again and again. They are divorced and he doesn't live with us, but then my mom has also expressed that I may move oout and not be heard from for a long time, and tbh that was kind of the plan. But if they know that I'm planning on really doing it or when, I'm not worried about any violent retribution as things are fucked up but not at that level. I really just don't want to deal with the inevitable emotional shitstorm that would follow. Any tips or thoughts is appreciated!
  9. The title might raise eyebrows but hear me out. I'm not trying to apologize on behalf of fundamentalists or evangelicals as I've never been one and even then don't speak for all of them, but do hear me out. Like many of you on here, I was raised Christian. Unlike many of you, I was not raised Fundie-homeschooled-not-part-of-the-world style. I was raised fairly casually Christian, in that I don't recall much church growing in earlier childhood and that became more of a dedicated habit around middle school. I actually got into religion more on my won, though over time my mom did push me into the youth choir and such but I began to not mind that much and got into some volunteering and trips, etc. Growing up I could watch just about any cartoon or movie(Dad took me to see the horror film Splice on my 10th birthday lol), and thanks to my non-religious uncle got away with watching Adult Swim before and up to early adolescence. I don't say this as a way to mock anyone, as I know unfortunately that many of you had the opposite experience with strict dress codes, feeling shame over sexual feelings/sexuality, homeschooling and isolation from peers, and strict and in alot of cases dysfunctional and abusive parents and famly. And do not get me wrong, having a ''Christian-lite'' upbringing did not mean that was off the table for me. I was a premie(born around 2-3 months early) and while I'm overall pretty healthy, I was born with Asperger's Syndrome. Thus, for me growing up I was very socially awkward, having issues with body language and social cues, being aware of boundaries and appropriate topics of conversation, and basically had far more ''trial and error'' compared to neurotypical kids. And it is kinda embarassing to admit that in middle school I actually would do Legos and stuff with the younger kids in the neighborhood and didn't really have friends my own age and was kinda the weird kid in middle school due to my tendencies. On top of that, my parents always had problems and middle school was the worst of it, with physical altercations between them,verbal arguments (with insults and profanity that far outdoes the likes of Family Guy and Robot Chicken) being smacked and shoved by my father, told I'm not the son he wanted, accusations of them cheating on each other, and me and my sister having our own altercations similar to my parents. This made youth group actually a safe haven for me in terms of having some sembleance of a social life and an escape of such a dysfunctional environment. Although, my old man(who had once said he was ok with me killing myself at 13) once took me out of youth group(not literally, but came into the room and asked me to step outside) to accuse my mom of carrying condoms in her car(I was like, around 14). My family is mostly African Amercian, so both of my parents were raised religious but more in the black family ''praise the Lord'' kind of way. Despite this, cue the shitty, dysfunctional marriage and the cheating accusations. They are also fairly homophobic, as I remember years ago my dad said he wouldn't really talk to a gay person, talked down about a boyfriend my sister had who was bi, and my mom has said we need to have 4 grandkids just in case some get sick and die or are ''confused'' which is what she uses to refer to a distant LGBT southern cousin. So between all of this, I had more work cut out for me in terms of social development and have come to envy people who ''won the lottery'' in comparison. And I had my own ''wolf in sheep's clothing'' in the form of Zimba, a kid I had befriended in my neighborhood who's family were the more conservative Christian type(No HP or LOTR, Spongebob or Johnny Test, stay locked in on Halloween) who I did bond with and had common interests, but over time he used and manipulated me more and years later I found out he allegedly assaulted my sister, and it tore me up at the thought of my only real friendship being for nothing and letting that kind of person into my life, especially given my other circumstances. And Christianity, while not a direct cause, was a hindarance in that the whole idea of a God having a plan for you, that you have a special role to play was very appealing to a lonely, autistic teenager and t left me with a sense of complacency when attempts at friendships and goals didn't work out, figuring God had everything under control. Point is, even if my experience wasn't exactly the norm on here, I definitely can relate to feeling of wasted time and lost opportunities. While others are moving ahead in life and enjoying things, we have to put in more work as the harsh hand we were dealt left us with emotional scars and trauma that held back or even fully robbed us of a proper childhood and adolescence, leaving only baggage that we must carry into adulthood unlike our peers who were given a better starting point. It definitely sucks, but as more of us learn from our experiences and see the truth, there's hope to break such a twisted cycle.
  10. Hey yall. So lately I have started to really feel a yearning for human interaction. Sure the current global lockdown has certainly played a role, even with still keeping in touch with old acquaintances wirelessly but that was how it was for me even before the pandemic. And I'm almost 20 and the last time I had a real friend was back in middle school, but if you saw my story on that you know that did NOT end well. Aside from friends, I guess I have been feeling lonely in terms of romantic relationships. I've never had a girlfriend and it didn't help when my mom questioned if I was gay or not since it didn't make sense for a guy my age to have never been in a relationship. Now keep in mind she had a VERY dysfunctional marriage with my dad as well as with her last boyfriend. And I will say that I have been talking to a guy I went to high school with (his name's Chris, generic name I'm ok saying it) and I will say he has definitely been threw his own shit. His parents are seperated, but the truly bad shit was seeing someone get killed in a gang shooting and his girlfriend(a girl I had knew and chilled with in our lunch group senior year) had cheated on him. I mean he had already been cheated on before by some other chick who may have been known for doing that(like I said drama) and this other girl she had actually seemed pretty nice. I didn't know her very well, but we had hung out with Chris in the time following graduation for a bit and they seemed to be a good couple from what I saw. I was even kinda envious at one point. But apparently, she had become more withdrawn from him over time, not wanting to talk to him and then she cheated on him with some other dude. Not only that, but she's MARRIED to him now. I didn't believe it at first, but he told me how she sent him the pictures directly to him of her and her new BF, told him they're married and looking at her IG page, she has this dude's last name as her own now and his name and a wedding ring emoji. All that to say is I do know that a relationship doesn't automatically create happiness. And I know not to be emotionally dependent, obsessive and controlling, not have my own opinions and interests and so on. I really want to do martial arts again and finish my EMT program. But after the loneliness of high school abd the years of family drama, once I can move out I want to finally start living life and it can be frustrating to see others do that already. I know I just want people I can spend time with and the same goes for dating. Thoughts?
  11. As someone more agnostic towards these things, I will say that personally I don't see much difference between "my consciousness ceases upon death" and "my consciousness goes to another physical form with no recollection of my past life". Obviously this varies, but if I was a caterpillar or Joseph Stalin in a past life I sure don't remember it, so either way who I was is effectively gone.
  12. Honestly I live my life the same regardless speaking as someone who's more agnostic leaning. Even if we could find signs of "something" beyond this life, you never know how things would turn out, so there's not much to gain in hedging your bets even then. Plus really, what functional difference is there between cessation of existence and being reborn as something else with no memory of your past life?
  13. Hello fellow heretics! This post will basically be a generalized story of my life and how it led to me being a Christian and my eventual deconversion. It's a bit of a read, so snack and drink recommended. I hope you are all safe and healthy during these times as well! Trigger warning: Mentions of verbal and physical abuse, sexual assault and suicde I wasn't raised in a Fundamentalist home. Christian yes but nowhere near that level of control, purity culture, etc. My family being African American being religious was mostly a given, but church going wasn't too much of a thing in my earlier to mid childhood until I started being involved with youth group and such in middle school-early high school. But I can relate to alot of you on these 3 things: the religious dependency, dysfunctional family, and being hurt by those who preached that they would be the last to do so. As some of you may know, I was born with Asperger's syndrome, a form of autism. To be clear, I'm not severely mentally retarded or anything close, but I have just always been very socially awkward, had lots of trouble with social cues and boundaries, understanding when I made people uncomfortable, etc. This is no excuse for poor actions, but socialization has been ALOT more of a learning process for me than others. And in middle school(and it really cringes to admit this) but I walked around alot by myself or did Legos and stuff with the younger kids alot which my dad called me out on before. What didn't help was that my parents had some pretty fucked up problems. Now sure, even the best families will have conflict, and I am not of a low socioeconomic background or have lived in the hood(mom works in healthcare, fwiw), but that doesn't change the fact that from my years as a baby to age 5 or 6, and especially middle school to now dysfunction really ramped up in my family. My mom is definitely not as bad as my father, but she has her issues. She can be somewhat hypocritical at times, a bit nagging, and she can have a bit of a temper but alot of it can be due to the stress with my father. I definitely get a feeling she to one extent or another enabled alot of my father's shitty behavior given he is the worst of the two. My father is definitely someone with whom my field of fucks is borderline barren. As for why, well... -For one thing, he had to be escorted out of the ICU when I was born (I was a premie) because he was being argumentative with my exhausted mother. -When I was a bit older but still a baby or toddler, my mom ended up calling the police since he took me without her permission to the warehouse he worked at(dirty warehouse, perfect place to have a small child) -He and my mom argued alot even back then. He even shoved her over a couch when she was pregnant with my sister. -I recall me and my sister crying in our rooms when I was 5/6 when they were fighting. My dad can also be a hot head even when it comes to being a parent as when I was having a little birthday party where I had cousins coming over and such, my mom wanted him to help tiddy up but it got him all pissy. She found a poisonous spider in our closet that could've bitten us while we were playing but he was still irritated. -From what I can remember age 7-11 wasn't too bad. Dad was laid off from work during the recession so he was a stay at home dad. He also has no college degree, he's the typical ''star basketball player in high school who got a scholarship, hurt his knee and dropped out'' kind of guy. He's actually a textbook example of ''peaking in high school.'' Anyway, not too much happened but there was some beef between me and him a couple of times. One time when he was mocking me(I didn't like basketball or wasn't alot like other boys) I got so mad I scratched his legs so hard as to draw blood, I ran outside, he yelled at me to get back, begins spanking me with a belt(no bruises or welts, but again black family) and my mom did pull him away tearing his shirt a bit since he was so mad. When we moved from where we had lived when I was 7-11, this was where the dysfunctional train really hit steam from that point on. Parents argued alot more, dad was in and out of the house living in his car alot subsisting on energy drinks and fast food. Mom despite working in nursing(she told me recently she makes ALOT more than I thought) struggled with making ends meet since we live in a higher cost state(California) and my dad didn't do much to help her what with being an asshole and having his own trouble with bad credit, not paying the IRS, etc. Throw in him shoving my mom into the couch and the wall hard enough to crack it, her scratching him a couple of times, my dad allegedly cheating on her, my paternal uncle staying over but my dad throwing him out 3 times over some beef(uncle wasn't much of a good guy himself), and even me and my sister having our own confrontations which mirrored my parents, which still happens sometimes and I'm not proud of it. I kinda got really into religion on my own. As a kid I was really into reading Bible storybooks in the kids section of Burlington. And eventually in my earlier adolescence I started getting into youth group activities, my mom had me in the choir, etc. And I had my moments where I was a bit of a Jesus freak(in 10th grade I did what was essentially a mini-sermon which caused some whispers to go around to say the least) and it had it's moments where it did NOT help the already awkward and inappropriate way I interacted with people. And due to how lonely I often was, that was a big part of why I got so into being Christian as there was the feeling of some bigger plan that I was an important player in, and a sense of complacency(which didn't help my socialization efforts) that things would eventually work out. And the youth group was pretty alright. No purity culture or the like(it was a predominantly black chucrch as well) and we did have trips and stuff and the youth pastor was good to me, even showing sympathy for my home life. In fact, my dad once took me out of youth group to accuse my mom of having ''condoms in her car'' and that she was cheating on him, and I just walked away from him and I told my mom who was also told by the youth pastor's wife. I could go on, but basically I got used to more than a few of these other instances for years. At that time however, I also befriended a neighbor kid a year older than called Simba. We had more than a few common interest, his family was the conservative Christian types with more rules than I had but still not full fundamentalist(but were creationist, no HP, etc). I went over to his house and spent lots of time with him and his brothers, his mom dropped me off and picked me up from school at times), we went to each others youth groups at times and letting him come over when my folks weren't home , as looking back he definitely used emotional manipulation and blackmail more than a few times, like getting a bit at my insecurities and he and his younger brothers would make jokes at my expense often. When I started high school as a freshman, we moved to a different town far from there, and me and Simba didn't really talk much anymore as his parents found out I had once again lent him my cell phone relating to some shenanigans with girls(long story, but just stupid adolescent stuff). The house we moved to(we later moved to one down the road once it was built) was close to my new high school, but had no transportation nearby and was removed a bit from town so it put more stress on my mom since dad was still in and out/being an asshole and it was disappointing since it made doing martial arts and getting out in general harder, especially since I got my license late, which didn't matter much since the second car my mom bought broke down and she couldn't afford to get it fixed for quite awhile. I also didn't go to church as much. I tried another youth group for a bit but gradually over time when I was into my phase of being into reading apologetics and such, I eventually started to gradually question things more, and despite not really being pushed to much into being religious I do recall feeling some shame over masturbation(nothing I was taught, but read about being a sin online) and when reading fanfiction for my favorite fandoms(big nerdy type) I found myself feeling very conflicted about the same sex pairings. It wasn't anything NSFW, just a typical romance or relationship between characters of the same gender. I'm straight, but I found that eventually it felt hard to see that as wrong. By 17, I had deconverted secretly, and having been a fan of Star Wars and Nickeloedon's Avatar I began to read up on Buddhism and Eastern philosophy along with some skeptic content. Eventually when I was almost 18 I came out after hearing a homophobic rant from my mom due to some beef between my sister and a bisexual boy she was seeing. Mom got into Jesus mode talking about the devil being in the house but my father(they divorced eventually) accepted it more if not begrudgingly. And I began to find how much I forced myself to read the Bible and praying alot, even to the point of it being like wishing since it would be even for more minor things or just convenience Despite trying some clubs, tried wrestling(never competed) and tried to interact I still didn't do very well socially in high school. I was never bullied but past freshman year everyone already seems to have their friends picked out so their wasn't the same openness. It made me bitter towards the end of senior year since my parents commented on me being a loner and missing the high school experience. They really pushed me to do prom and while I had some fun it still felt forced deep down and I didn't dance with a girl or anything like that. When I was 16 there was a clusterfuck involving a classmate in a potentially dangerous situation but that's a whole other story, and I've come far in feeling better about it anyway. But suffice to say I hung out a bit with a few classmates in senior year but overall still felt like I missed out especially at graduation seeing kids who were more popular having friends give them extra applause and calling their names. And during the summer afterwards when I was getting ready for community college, after a confrontation with my sister who had another one of her outbursts(she's had increasing suicide/runaway attempts and mood swings over the years) she broke down saying Simba had assaulted her during one of the times I had him over. I broke down eventually over this as he was the closest to a best friend I ever had, but that turned out to be another disappointment in my life and of course my sister being hurt like that. And confronting him over text messages and how he responded(denial, threats, blackmail, then love bombing and calls for forgiveness when I backed down) really showed me the type of person he was, as he had sometimes made comments about my sister's mature development for her age which at the time I mistook as just typical adolescent talk(''Dude, your sister's hot!'') I fucked around in community college for about a year(got financial aid from Department of Rehabilitation due to condition) but my mom did point me to doing EMT training since my desired career is being a game warden/park ranger. I did the first semester and am in the second but due to current events training is on hold till the shelter order is lifted. Family tensions do still happen unfortunately, as even this past summer the cops/paramedics were at our house 4 times, the fourth for my sister overdosing on pills and my dad trying to fight me in her hospital room just because I told him and my mom not to argue in there. And like with past incidents there is they cycle of bad shit happening, apologies and love bombing, then him saying he's sorry and how he didn't have a proper father figure growing up, etc and my mom trying to get me being open to forgiveness, even though this same cycle has occured for YEARS. So at this point, I am in therapy, which has been helping but I'm hoping to move out within a few months, especially if I can pass for my EMT certification. While I do find myself wanting to move forward with my life not worrying about my family dysfunction, I still can't help but feel conflicted. But I do know that my mom has gotten a bit more religious over time, given me rants about converting back from Buddhism(I was inspired by the Jedi and Nickelodeon's Avatar) and I don't have much hope for my dad changing. But as things are, I will just have to be patient, and keep hoping while taking it one step at a time.
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