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Jan has agreed that I can post the following email correspondences. I feel that it is important for several reasons.

1- to clarify the challenges I particularly face along with other hosts when we are hosting chats.

2- the issues individuals face with alcoholism and other addictions.. their feelings, their loved one's behaviors etc

and to

3- acknowledge once again that it truly is safe to express yourself here at the site, in the chats, at the boards etc.

sometimes, it is difficult to read what another is really saying since we don't have full eye contact, etc. We may not know the person very well who is expressing, so the following posts are important in terms of clarifying all of the above.

Jan is incredible for working through this with me and I am truly grateful. I wouldn't want anyone to walk away from here, feeling judged, misunderstood. All the work I have done and continue to do is to provide a safe, nurturing site to grow and heal. This is my whole purpose and mission...

Richest blessings
Gail
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

Posted for Jan

Dear Gail,

Just a quick note to claify some of the
things I said in the chat last nite. I first would like to thank you and Sunshine for your input. I think you both gave me alot to think about and I know you are both right.. about the need I have to clean up old issues in order to move smoothly onward. I want you to know tho that I surely did not think these
things could be solved in one chat...or that you could solve them...

I love my Dad, but due to several extremely trying days, feeling exasperated and angry,
plus exhausted my clarity was clouded. I know my Dad will not change...you know... the Serenity Prayer....

I really just wanted validation that my feelings were "normal". Do other caregivers get confused and forget what is really important with increased stress levels?

I know caring for my Dad out of guilt ...in any way, shape or form is not trulycaring... All I really wanted was support...I felt like you thought I was too entrenched to be helped in the chat; tho I thought Sunshine did help alot just by saying it was ok...e.g.
to feel like hiding.etc.

Maybe I need clarification on what kind of issues are o.k. for chats...this being the first site I have ever chatted online...I felt like I was monopolizing and asking too much.

Again, I agree therapy is of great value and working on issues with my father would be useful....in many areas of my life.

Synchronicity that he is here with me??? You
bet...Gail you and Sunshine helped me alot...
just giveme some guidelines for chatting.

We both (Dad and I)had a much better day today. Just finished watching the Sixers and the Raptors play in the NBA play-offs. We cheered wildly and acted like pro. armchair
coaches....we laughed a lot too.

Thanks Gail....thanks for forwarding the chat...it was most helpful to read...I read it twice..so far...Thanks for taking the time...I hope you got the prob. with the
computer figured out....your site has been so helpful to me...I cruise thru it whenever I get a spare minute.

oh, and I 'm sorry I didn't say a formal
goodnight...eeek is that chat etiquette? When I said wish me luck...I was gone...Sooo Goodnight Gail and thanks for putting up with people like me...I'm learning...and that's always good. Sometimes it is hard to know what people are really saying...you know? cuz we don't really know each other... like when I say thanks for putting up....I'm saying it in kind of a lighthearted way.... wow this was supposed to be
short... gotta get to bed...

Goodnight.
Jan AKA Janelle (always liked that name)
Jan}}}}}

I understand what you are saying and I am happy that you responded. It is so difficult to understand in the chat, to read between the lines when things are going so fast. I guess I was sensing that you wanted it cleared up in the chat...there really aren't boundaries that I can set.

It isn't improper to "monopolize" the conversation as you said. I along with whom ever is present truly want to support everyone the best that we can. I think each
situation is individual and I have never thought about setting boundaries in terms of what is impt to talk about and what isn't.

I think anything that comes up is usually important enough and others usually can relate to it or else they wouldn't come up. Sorta like when the student is ready the teacher appears and vice versa...so I don't want you to feel limited...what I did feel was as if you wanted the answers, and I admitted then and once again now, that I didn't really have them. I hope you understand where I am coming from.

Yes your feelings and mixed emotions are all normal... I definitely agree, but I just felt you were wanting more, and I didn't feel confident in helping you get through the real issues at hand.

I would also agree that many of us, myself included have gotten the issues confused when we were overhwhelmed with emotions and stress in our roles as caregivers. I don't
ever feel there is a right or wrong way to feel. It is just where we are in the moment.

Mary Ann aka Prairie Gal hosted two chats this past week and there was a gal Trish who had dealt with alcoholics if I remember correctly. The chats were remarkable in speaking about the issues you are faced with as well.

From the way you were expressing yourself, it
seemed that you just didn't want to work through the old hurts again...and I just spoke from what was coming through me.

You are a remarkable woman and I honor you and your willingness to share and work through it. I think your decision to process these emotions will help you to become clearer which is the most important issue at hand.

I am so pleased to hear you had a much better day today cheering the team
on...

As far as your leaving, I am not quite sure it is because I don't know you better... it was the way that you signed off ...it seemed that you were upset..it is definitely difficult to read expressions, sense tones of
voices, etc. behind the mask of this electronic computer...so I felt, you had signed off because you didn't like what was said. I think Gloria aka sunshine may have felt the same way.

There is no need for any apologies angel... the fact that we can share and communicate as we are is the most important factor.

I hope this helps. I would be willing to post this at the boards if you wanted to post your own response below for others to learn from...this is up to you and I do respect it.

I do hope you will continue to come into the chats and not feel uncomfortable sharing what ever it is that you need to. Perhaps if what you are needing is confirmation in what you are feeling in the moment, you can
preface that so we will understand that it is in the moment...and that it hasn't taken over you...this would help us to support you and keep it more focused...it is all a learning experience for all of us, yourself and myself included. I don't have all the answers. This chatting is a learning
experience for me as well..

richest blessings angel.

love & light
gail
Hi Gail,

Thanks for responding....I'm glad to hear
you understand me. I think your suggestion to preface material with "at this moment I am feeling..." if at all possible, but I think sometimes the feelings are so strong, and we forget they are just feelings, not
who we truly are, that we get too confused or mired down to remember. So we can just remind each other.

I think the way you remind people of their true goodness is so helpful. You do it in such a kind and thoughtful manner...As for reading people over the net...yes, it is difficult but I must admit you and Sunshine were right...I was bummed out when I left the
chat. Partly b/c I felt misunderstood and I understand now how you not knowing me might make you think I wanted instant solutions.. and was actually expecting them to come from you or our chat.

The other part was knowing you were right about dealing with old issues in order to have clarity, growth, and ultimately peace. The thought of delving into anything heavier
than what I was in at the time seemed the impossible.(See, those neg. feelings leave us powerless).

I didn't mean to be rude tho or not appreciate your efforts. If reposting any of this would be useful to others go ahead and post it ...you have my permission.

Thanks Gail!
Hello Janelle,

Know you weren't rude at all...we just all responded or reacted to what we were hearing. The blessing is that we are able to maturely and openly work through it so that we both learn, grow and heal from it.

I honor you for all your sharing and caring in all ways.

Have a great day.

Richest blessings
Gail
Dear Jan:
My what a courageous woman you are...you expressed yourself so well in the emails. You let us know your feelings and knowing those feelings helps me to know you better. I wasn't there for the whole chat. But, I read it. I think your willingness to remain open and your working through this with Gail is commendable and to be emulated. I won't say much more because I was not present for the entire chat. I just want you to know that I admire you and Gail for doing what is so much needed in our world today...a deep willingness and caring to work out misunderstandings with clarity and honesty. Sounds as if you and Gail will only deepen your relationship as a result of your talking things through...that's great! I'm glad you and your Dad had a good day. I care about you and support you all the way! I mean that. Take care.

Melissa
Hi everyone..lol..

Just my two cents...
I agree about chatting...It is a whole 'nother ballgame as you cannot see the other person's expressions, etc, and can mistake things.
It's like my chat with Trisha who was trying to get across to me the "enabling" aspect. She asked some pretty tough questions, then would ask if I thought she was being too harsh.
I appreciated her directness with the questions, when things are at a "don't know what to do next" point, beating around the bush just won't get you anywhere. But then of course because she does not know me and does not know how I would react to being "put on the spot", so to speak, she figured she should ask if her questions bothered me..
Those "old" issues always, always creep in too...my husband has them in dealing with his brother and parents, I have them in dealing with my father. I am striving to deal with mine in regards to my father, mostly because it is to the point now that someone MUST be in charge with him.
My husband is not at the realization point yet with his "past issues" and as yet cannot bring himself to talk openly with either brother or parents. As annoying as this is to me I have to let him work it out for himself, when the time is right I hope he is able to express himself.

To Jan...What you are feeling with your dad is so so normal. I too "hide" occasionally by not answering my dad's phone calls just because I do not feel like dealing with it.
Whether it's right or wrong I don't know...I do feel guilty sometimes when I do this but also feel that I need time for myself. It's a constant struggle to do what is right, especially when the relationship in the past with this person has not been the best.
All we can do is keep trying...not only with caregiving but in dealing with all these issues that do pop up. And there are plenty it seems when dealing with parents.

Take care...
PrairieGal
I just want to let you know Jan and nuntoosad that I think you both are very strong beatiful young ladies.
I'm a firm believer in sharing or talking out your problems. I've been doing it since I was a teenager. Coming from an abusive child hood then to go into an abusive marriage I' had a lot of problem but I believe God used my gift to if you will pardon the sepression spill my guts. I was critized many times but it did not stop me and I believe that God usd my openess and willingness to share or talk to heal me.
I'm so happy that you both plan to stay a part of theis family, caus that's what we are is family and we're here to love support and do what ever we can to help sometimes by just listening and some of us who have been down a similair path can offer some helpful hints.
Also thank you for your kind words.I felt so helpless and did not realize that i had helped in any way. Glad to har that I was able to because that is what I want to do.
God had done so very much for me that if I can pass it on to someothers then it has not been in vain.
God bless you
love Gloria
Hello Everyone...

I am so pleased that we actually posted these responses because it is so important to understand one another and dynamics can get lost or even confusing when in the chat.

The willingness to be open and truly express ourselves with no fear of being judged is perhaps the greatest support that Empowering Caregivers can offer for all of us. To work through it and know that we all stand strong behind one another is a blessings.

Richest blessings to you all

Gail

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