My Journey

"I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
- Robert Frost
2 days ago. Wed 18 Jul 2018 02:55:37 PM IDT

I apologize for the delay in writing, writer's block sucks. I think I need to take a break from writing, I know it's only been four days worth of writing, but to someone with BPD, it gets really exhausting. I get emails from people sharing their thoughts, experiences, and even parts of their soul. I find that very refreshing, and encouraging. I believe everything happens for a reason, especially when we struggle. I would argue that if we spent our life seeking out pleasure and happiness, life would grow weary, we would become complacent, and stop growing.

I spent most of my younger years, ok, up until I was 28, apologizing for everything, even those things that weren't my fault. I was probably around ten at the time and was visiting my father. My brother and I spent about a month every year together, visiting the same parent before one of us moved with the other parent. He and I nver had a decent relationship, I think he resented me as he was always charged with taking care of me. This time was no exception. Our father had told my brother that he was in charge and not to eat and spoil dinner, we would eat when dad got home from work. I think it was bareky after noon and I decided I wanted to eat something. My brother met me in the kitchen and we had a few words, very few in fact, because as soon as I talked back to him he lifted me off the floor and threw me across the kitchen. I only stopped when my back hit the oven. It was a good throw, to be honest. I was pretty small at the time, but I'm sure to get the distance he really had to put his ass behind it...valiant effort.

I wish, my dear reader, I could tell you I got up off the ground and stomped his ass, but I didn't. Nope, never mind that he probably would have kicked my ass, my worry was the beating I would have gotten from my father. So, I ran out of the house crying in anger and shame (If you think less of me for that, go fuck yourself. This was I think one of the last times I can recall crying). So I left and went for walk, trying to calm the demons that were raging inside of me. Why was he so adamant about not eating. It was lunch time, we had breakfast, and all I wanted was a small bowl of goddamn ice cream. I think what pissed him off was not that I wanted to eat, but because I said two words in defiance to him, "So, what." Doesn't matter, he was wrong for acting out. Period.

I decided to walk to my grandmother's house, about 200 yards away from my father's and hopefully wait for my father to arrive. As I walked through the woods and arrived at the dirt road, my father pulled up. He stopped in front of me and told me to turn around and go home. I could barely hear him, almost like he was in a tunnel. No, I was intently focused on the smiling, beaming face of the person sitting next to him...my brother. We learned at an early age how to twist things and manipulate the situation to our favor, and we were good. Not good enough to fool our parents, but good enough to fool a lot of people...and he was better, much better than I. When we I got home, they were there. I had to apologize for my actions toward my brother, and that beating I was worried about getting from my father, I got it anyway.

I'm tired of apologizing. I'm tired of secrets and the constant worry that someone will look at me and see them. There are many things I could share with you, many, many demons inside who have names, but somethings I share only with those whom I am very close to. That's my perogative. But I have no secrrets anymore. I have sttod on the house top and shouted them out for all the world to hear. Those very few people (three I can count), who know me, know me well. The one person, knows me so intimately it scares the hell out of me. In that relationship I find grace, acceptance, and I am not ashamed of anything. That one, and the others, give me strength to press on ad learn more about myself. They give me the courage to face my demons and not be afraid of their chaos. I am who I am, and I am free for that. But only because there are those who see me and see beyond my scars and hideousness. And you, my beloved reader, because you have continued with me so far (and there is more to come), have grown also. Maybe you see it in yourself, maybe not yet. But you have grown. You read what I wrote, and the seeds are planted. Something insdie of you stirs, hungers, desires to call out to break the chains that have you bound. You may not know it, but there is strength in you, strength to embrace who you are and what you want. Fight the good fight. 

 

5 days ago. Sun 15 Jul 2018 11:59:10 AM IDT

I was stuck all with writer's block. You know, even with all the ideas in your head and papers full of thought from brainstorming, an idea is considered but when you start going down that rabbit hole...SMACK, right into the wall. I hate writer's block. I thought about writing about the agression I feel with as a result of never feeling safe, never feeling like someone had my back. So I would over compensate with control...Nope, not going down this hole now. I'll save this for another day, perhaps Day Five.

No, I spent my time today reading blogs and emails from people I am in the process of building friendships with, even from those blogs that pull at my heart strings.  I have realized in my short time here, something I have never found in my recently turned 47 years of life: Honesty, openness, courage, and strength. I read of people I have never met talk about their struggles, their pain, their joys, and things that bring them comfort. I saw it when I first signed up, I read it in the first emails I received.

I hope you see it, we, this community, is the very definition of Pluribus Unum, "Out of the many, One." As a people, we seek unity in diversity and here it is so obvious. We all have different ideas of what BDSM constitues and how to play the game. For some, it consists of just playing roles without any emotional attachment. For others, the acts are not near as important as the connection. Let's not stop there, the acts themselves vary from person to person. Definitions change, each relationship is unique. Since I have learned to embrace who I am, completely, I have found new freedoms and confidences I thought were hidden from me.

You who have joined me on my journey, you who have reached out to me, you have helped me and given me the strength to bare my soul and wounds still raw so hopefully I can discover another layer to who I am.  I have seen in this community, people who are not afraid to look within, embrace their pain, and muster the courage to share it with others here in an open blog. I know who I am, I can bare myself without fear of your judgement or ridicule, because I know if you snicker at my pain or call me weak, then you are to be pitied.  For me, sharing who I am and what I have survived is the next step in my growth. There are those here who openly write of their struggles and pain, all the while afraid of ridicule, assholes trying to be fixers, and pathetic individuals who prey on their emotions. 

I have seen and met some of the most couargeous people here, in this community. Courage is not the absence of fear, but action in spite of it (I have no clue where I heard that). To you who have the courage to face your pain and grow through it, for what it's worth, I salute you. We are many people with differnt ideas and predilictions, but we are one in that we share a common theme...we are human trying to find our place and acceptance in this world.

I am aware none of you need my approval or acceptance, who the hell am I? I'm just trying to affrim what you already know. You are stronger than most everyone around you and you have the courage to face your pain. You can do this because there is a community here that supports you...I have read the comments in the blog.

Be proud, you are appreciated, valued, and valuable.

Bishop

6 days ago. Sat 14 Jul 2018 01:06:49 AM IDT

I've noticed I have a tendency to repeat myself. I like to think it comes from when I taught basic english class to budding college students (that's not english 101, I was a English tutor for work study) and tell them as I rap my knuckles on the desk, "When I repeat something, it's very important, you will see it again." In reality I think it's just because I'm getting older and my mind isn't the steel trap it used to be...or maybe never was.  I have an extremly cold, morbid sense of humor. My first inclination is to make a joke and laugh internally when tragedy strikes. When the shuttle "Challenger" exploded in 1986, for example, I was finally a thriving comedian. "Did you know Christa McAuliffe had two blue eyes? Yep, one blew this way and the other blew that way." Hey, I never said the jokes were my own. 

I saw my first dead body when I was about 16. A jeep blew through an intersection and was t-boned by another car a block away from my house, the occupants of the jeep were all drunk. The jeep hit a telehone pole head on and a girl who was in the back seat was ejected from the jeep. She landed in someone's yard about 40 feet from where the jeep had impacted the pole.  It honestly looked like she face planted the pole and bounced off.  Don't get me wrong, we still attempted to bring her back, goddamn did we try. I can still hear every rib crack and remember the counting in my head, one one thusand, two one thousnd, three one thousand, four one thousand...and on and on, until we counted to 15, then a breath. Never mind the blood, the sticky taste of copper, or the taste and smell of hard liquor,  just wipe as much as you can out of her mouth. When you get home, you can wash off anything that might still be on you. It's exhausting to do, adrenaline coursing through your veins, nothing else exists except for what's right in front of you...the lifeless body of a teenage girl. All because some godamn fuck tard decided it would be cool or ok to get his stupid ass behind the wheel after he had been drinking. I hope he learned from that day. As long as we worked on her, my mind was numb, blank, hyper focused. My world slowed down to a crawl, the 15 compressions felt like the took 15 years. Why wasn't she breathing, why wasn't this doing any good, what am I doing wrong? My first thought when I saw the scene, and when I was home trying to rid myself of the evidence that I had failed her, her friends, and her parents, was an image of her flying through the air with a cape.  The friend I was hanging out with coudn't understand why the occasional snicker escaped my mouth.

I raged afterwords, I still do. I feel guilty, guilty for the thoughts, guilty for not bringing her back, guilty for not killing the driver of the jeep. I started drinking when I was young, as a reward for getting my father another beer. By the time I was 11, I would get drunk often...and I raged then. I don't mean just getting angry and stomping around the house, or wherever I was. No, I mean I turned a solid shade of green and exploded all over everything and everyone around me. The gates of hell opened and out the demons came. I pretended I was invincible, willing and able to fight any male that would step up. I was a stupid drunk, and angry drunk, a really bad drunk. Maybe I'm still a little stupid and angry, I don't drink. Whenever I feel the need to do so, all I do is think about what it cost me in the past. Squelches the desire really quick.

That's how I respond to things: quiet, hyper-focused, intense. It used to be worse than its is today. Through therapy I ahve grown to use coping skills which help me mitigate these issues. I haven't raged in a while. It was so bad when I was younger that I would get drunk and try to wrap my car around power poles. Looking back the only thing that probably saved my life: I was too drunk to take off my seatbelt.

From the things that happened, I lived a life of guilt, anger, and resentment...mostly of shame. I kept their goddamn secrets and tried to be a good son. What did I do that made the family split apart? I promise to be good, just come back home and be a family. When I did something I knew/believed to be wrong, I would punish myself. I did this, no toys for a week, or no tv for a month. It never lsated, I was always back to playing with my toys or wtaching tv. I felt even more shame and guilt for failing. Was I ever going to be good enough, why is everything my fault? No, I said, I'm not good enough. Everything is my fault, and no one will ever want to be around me.

I had to take a few breaks in writing this, I hope the reading isn't too hard to follow.  Still, If you would like to reach out and share I would encouarge it. It is very therapeutic. email me if you would like.

 

 

1 week ago. Thu 12 Jul 2018 09:33:02 PM IDT

Again, Trigger warning...Please be aware these posts can cause anxiety, disassociations, and disconnections

After reading my last two posts, I have concluded that I would have failed english 102 and effective communications. I feel as though I have done myself, and you, my dear, poor reader, an injustice by glossing over these situations so superficially. So I am going to endeavor to modify my writing and how I describe these events.

 

A couple of years after my parents divorced for the last time, I was visiting my father in another state and we were drving in a two tone, blur and grey, Chevy Silverado on some country back roads just outside of a little town. The town was so small that it only had two stop lights, one didn't work and the other just blinked. The ongoing joke was we had to check our family tree before dating anyone. I remember the day, it was a warm southern day but not overly hot. My father owned a small construction business and we were just taking lunch. His "life lessons" always consisted of lectures, not healthy communication, about doing what he says and not what he does.  I developed a keen ability to shut him out without his knowing...except for this day.  I had allowed my body language to slip my guard and was hugging the passenger door, eyes looking out the window and wanting so desperately to be anywhere but where I was. Obviously he understood what was going on and asked me if I would rather he shut up (I hate those words, shut up, the are so goddamn disrespectful and final) and stop lecturing.  With someone so domineering, controlling, and manipulative, the answer was obvious, "No father, please keep spewing your worldly wisom and knowledge that I may grow someday to be half as brilliant and wise as you are." But such honesty would only bring disastrous results. I shook my head no like a good, obedient son and muttered, "I'm sorry".

Evidently I was not on my best game that day, he was convinced I was lying to him. Yet, instead of pulling over, yanking me out of the truck and beating the truth into me, he changed his tone and gently began to probe what was really going on in my head. He insisted that he valued open and honest communication, where all parties should be able to speak freely no matter what. If I wanted him to not lecture anymore, I should just speak up and say so...after all, I was a man (granted I was about 10). He asked me to repeat after him, "Dad, I wish you wouldn't lecture me. Please be quiet." I refused, at first. Something in his body language, voice inflections, and words that he chose to use did not add up...I sensed a trap. "Repeat after me"...(I shake my head no). "It's ok son, I won't get angry. I'm trying to teach you something."... (I shake my head no again). "Son, really, it's ok. Just repeat after me."

Dammit, why did I think for a minute that this was different? I was smarter than this, I knew better than to trust him, trust anyone. Why was I so weak in this moment to let my guard down? Like a dumb, naive kid I did what he asked, thinking for just a minute that maybe, just maybe, I was wrong and could actually be honest about how I felt and wha tI thought.  Nope, it was not to be. Not that day, not ever between he and I.  He said it again, "Dad, I wish you wouldn't lecture me. Please be quiet."  Hearing tires skid so roughly, and the sound of gravel being violently displaced still takes me back to that day, although not so badly now.  I actually think I saw him turn a dark shade of green and grow beyond what his clothes could stand. I think he actually put it in park before the truck stopped moving.

He jumped out of his door, slammed it shut...the silence for just those brief few seconds seemed so serene, so sublime. No, he wasn't green. I could see his face was a very deep red, the veins popping out of his forehead as he flung my door open. I distinctly remember his big, meaty hand grapping my shirt and felt the pull as he yanked me out of the truck. In some way, I am thankful that is the last thing I remember about that day, except that was the worst beating I ever got from him, or anyone else for that matter. 

 

*Disclaimer*

I honestly don't know what these blogs are going to invoke within you, what thoughts or feelings they may conjure. I don't know how you will view me, and in all honesty I really don't give a fuck.  To be honest, I used to think my father was the epitome of what a dominant was supposed to look like, coupled with all the BDSM porn videos. If you think for one second that I am anything like the way he used to be, you and I will never be friends.  Granted,he has taught me so very much in the time he was living, 99% of it was what not to do. It is not pity, sympathy, or even false acceptance I seek. No, my dear traveller, what I seek is something much, much deeper... Something deeper than words can put description to.  I moved 23 times in 23 years, never staying in the same house for more than 8 months (except when I went to prison). I never learned how to carry normal, superficial, conversations...I grow very weary of them, very easily. I yearn for more than the mundane, the vanilla, the "normal". We use terms like "love" so often in our daily lives that, for me, it has lost any sort of meaning and specificity. I yearn for something much deeper. I would invite you to reach down into the very depths of your being and see what is there, that which you truly seek, where no one else has looked or ventured...now, go a little deeper, just a little more, one more push...there, that's where I would like to meet.

 

1 week ago. Wed 11 Jul 2018 11:29:16 PM IDT

****Warning: Triggers may lie ahead, please proceed with caution****

 

I'm not exactly sure just what I am going to write, so I will put the warning in now in case I get too graphic...you have been warned. Ok, I have add a possible trigger or two, just an fyi.

I like Khalil Gibran's quotes, or most good quotes that give encouagement and support in times of suffering and pain (physical or emotional). One of my favorites is, "Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars."  Another of his quotes is, "Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding."

I am convinced that there is a purpose for everything that happens to us, whether we know it or not, whether we admit it or not. I do not put those quotes or claim that they were wirtten for me, as if I am someone who has endured so much that I am to be lifted up as someone with a flawless character. Actually, I believe it's just the opposite. I see those kinds of quotes as a means to encouage me to seek patience and understanding in everything, good and bad. I have been told that I over-analyze things too much, seek to see siutations from every angle possible (for those who watch Game of Thrones, season seven when Littlefinger tells Sansa something like this will get it).  I half-jokingly add that I thought about being told that for two weeks. I also believe that we must be able to understand the past, otherwise we are destined to repeat it (I heard this from somewhere, but cannot recall where from).

I was born in 1971, to an alcoholic, emotionally and physically abusive father and a mother who was emotionally non-existant.  I say this, not to shift blame to anyone, but to merely give a factual understanding. Neither am I a victim, I refuse that title, I am a survivor.  Back then, things like adultery, abuse, and alcoholism were dirty little secrets that no one talked about...ever (at least in my family). Everyone knew what was going on, but it could be denied as long as no one mentioned it.

One of the few memories I have is of the last time my father was in the same state as my mother. Before I turned 9, my parents married and divorced 5 times...to each other. I remember a time that they got married, were in my uncles house and I was the best man. The judge mentioned the, "till death do you part" comment and I could not stop laughing. I don't recall how old I was, pretty young, I got a serious beating for that.

Anyway, the last time my parents were in the same house, my father was drunk and had kicked the front door in. I rememebr the scene as I stood in the steps. My brother and I had come from downstairs, we stopped about half way down the stairs, he a couple of steps below me, looking over the railing I could see my father standing over my mother with a phone cord wrapped around her neck.

That was hard even now to write, 38 plus years later. I won't finish the night and what happened, let's just say he was finally arrested and agreed to leave the state, if the DA would drop the charges.  The thing about why I mentioned that is, had I been asked ten years ago about my childhood I would have said it was fine and I wasn't abused. I'm fortunate, in that I have never been sexually abused, but there was an abundance of emotional, psychological, and physical abuse.  It's amazing what we can reason as "normal".

Needless to say, I was diagnosed with severe PTSD and quiet Borderline Personality Disorder and have been in therapy for a number of years. I have a service dog who assists me in my day to day public endeavors, which people always attribute to me having because of my time in the service. When they find out the PTSD is a result of a combination of things, they lower their head and just say, "I'm sorry."  Deep down I want to tell them to go fuck themselves becasue I am not a victim. What the hell makes combat related PTSD any more honorable than any other trauma? how does anyone know the primary cause of my issues, perhaps it was child abuse, but maybe it was military related, or the nine years I spent in prison, or the other things I have seen. Rant over.

If you have gotten to this part, thank you for taking the time to join me. I wanted to establish a base line moving forward, I think this is a good start. Again, I welcome any comments or suggestions you may have. Feel free to email if you so choose.

I apologize for any grammitcal errors.

Bishop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 week ago. Wed 11 Jul 2018 02:53:22 AM IDT

My life, at one point, was filled with a sense of shame. Shame for what I thought and shame for what I felt.  I tried for so long to deny who I am and what I am, it almost cost me my life and my sanity. Once I embraced and understood who I am, I began to relax and feel better about myself.  This blog, I hope, will be about my journey from where I was to where I am today. I'm not a writer, nor am I a poet. I studied English and communications as a dual major in college. I enjoy studying philosophy, psychology, and human behavior. I hope to use those things to convey my story so I am able to better understand myself, and perhaps in sharing who I am and where I have come from, others can find themselves as well.

Most people misquote what Frost was saying when he wrote the poem, "The Road Not Taken." He was making the point that one road was no different than the other. The only difference was which road the traveller took.  I fell into the trap of thinking BDSM was a one-size fits all situation, how naive of me.  This blog is about my process and I would invite you to join me as I share my journey and thoughts that have led me to where I am today.

 

Bishop