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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today is my mother's birthday. She's long ago passed away, but I thought I'd write a little something that might help some of you guys who are parents. I know you worry that because of your dp, your kids are somehow "cheated" or that you are failing them, etc.

The truth is, kids accept whoever you are. They will also hate you from time to time, NOT because you have some mental symptoms, but because you won't let them do something, or buy something, or because you are just OLD, and "do not understand!" ...you will be hated for being a Parent, not for being a parent with an illness.

My mother was schizophrenic. We also lived with my grandmother (who was sane, but oh, a bit neurotic, lol)..so she raised me, cared for me, etc... But my mother was there every day, in my life, in my world. Crazy or sane, she was there. She was always kind, or at worst totally unavailable (off in her own mind)...and when she was relatively together, she was brilliant and fascinating (although always pretty odd).

We went to the movies every Sunday - she adored the world of films, and knew just about every single factoid about the "movie stars" that anyone would ever want to know. After the show, we'd go to lunch and she would proceed to analyze the picture nearly frame by frame, lol....she knew "what this character was really thinking..." and who really liked who, who might be having an offscreen affair with whom, etc....she could say "this is where you could see their chemistry, in this scene...you could tell they weren't just acting..."

It was nutty sometimes...but always intriguing. And those conversations taught me to really SEE films, more than just escape into the movies, we watched and analyzed and discussed motivations and character development and what scenes worked and which ones didn't. It was like going to the movies with a psychotic Siskel and Ebert, lol...

From that, I developed a lifelong love of acting..of movies and theatre, and later literature. She was not some intellectual, by a long shot, but the same remnants from our movie discussions later led me into James Joyce and Dostoyevsky...to the greats of literature because there I found more symbolism, and more mind-challenging ideas.

From that, I was totally at home in psychoanalysis - where metaphors are used from literature and mythology and all the arts - symbols and allegories and literary allusions....I found my "calling" (my adored profession) from the same through-line of interest that was started with Mom on rainy Sundays in New Orleans, talking about the latest "picture show."

We give our children parts of ourselves, of our loves and passions and interests. We shape them in ways we both realize and don't.

At any rate, a child can grow up and take the best of their upbringings - and that can come in the form of any kind of parent - sane or psychotic or temporarily impaired by something like DP.

Happy Birthday, Mom. Hope you're up in Heaven with some of your favorite movie stars.

Love,
your daughter, Janine
 

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thankyou for that post janine.....i sometimes feel like a failure when it comes to been a parent because of the dp and how it has affected me, i have felt as if my kids really hate me at times but you're right its not because of the illness its from disciplining them.....kids hate hearing the word no.....but i know one thing and thats that i would never want to be without them....they are my life :)
 

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janine,

your post literally brought tears to my eyes. i'm drying them as we speak, before the automatrons at my work see it, and start gossiping again.

that was such a lovely missive...you're just so cool sometimes...

s.
 

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a lovely piece of writing. i havn't read much about your life in posts
 

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Thats spot on about lots of the posts pdr where is the life in our posts? Its as if the people in our life are just props in our DP/DR existence. The beautiful associations, foundations and feelings which shaped my life are what I miss, thank you for sharing yours Janine.
 

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My sister and I jsut discussed this yesterday. Both her and I were affected by upbringing, genetics of course, but lots of psycho/social issues. Ma was scared to death due to a boozing husband, and impoverished. She either wound up agoraphobic and panic disorded due to genetics or enviroment, but the bottom line is she suffered. She was paralyzed. And yes the kids picked up on it, being left alone emotionally and full of fears.
But what sis and I spoke of is that is all Ma knew and with what she had she did wonderfully. In spite of her infirmities she made it all happen for us. We were injured, yes. But it is her infirmities that made us love her more. And her courage. There is no blame toward her for any unpleasantness in our lives now, only a very kind remembrance of a woman that gave all she had for those she loved, imperfect as it was. Life ain't perfect, and never are parents.
jft
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
My mom was crazy too. Except instead of going to the movies she murdered my sister. Yeah.. parents sure are funny.

eDfGr33n
"wallow wallow"
 

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Janine, thank you for such a beautiful post. I really needed to read a post like this today. My heart goes out to you in the loss of your mother. Your mom must have been so proud to have such a wonderful caring daughter.

gem.
 

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youre right janine. its far better to look on the bright side and what kind of positives there are in being 'disabled'. even if the negatives seem to outweigh the positives most of the time. gav and i want to have kids of our own someday and i dont want to have constant negative thoughts about our 'flawed' gene pool. i think if my kid gets panic attacks it wont be nearly as bad as mine.. only because unlike my parents, ill know whats going on and handle it right away and not try to sweep my childs difficulties under the carpet and pretend all is perfect. life isnt perfect. no one is. but without flaws the beautiful things would not taste nearly as sweet.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I enjoyed your picture show story Janine.
It's a subject near to my heart.
I used to take myself to the pictures(as we then called them)every Saturday afternoon.
I would come home and sit by the river with my dog and dream of all the wonderful far away places I saw.I imagined that I would one day live a luxurious glamorous life like the beautiful women in the pictures.
I was certain that I would marry Elvis.
What happened? LOL no wonder disenchantment set in.

Sorry to digress from the topic of parenting.I do agree.
I still miss my Mum even though it's been 35yrs since she died.
I miss what we never had whilst she was alive and all the years since.
Love Shelly
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Sorry Shelly, but I'm fairly sure my Mom is with Elvis right now, lol...she adored him.

The stuff of fantasies - the magic of the picture show. Yep.

I'll tell you, there were many times in my life when the ONLY thing that kept me from feeling emotionally isolated were my movies. I related/connected to movie characters long long before I could relate to anyone real.

They were my friends.
And I remember everyone of them with love.

p.s. Ever see a foreign film called "Cinema Paradiso?" It's a must-rent
 
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