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Our 6th visit to the Stately Home.....

(989 Posts)
oneplusone Tue 19-May-09 11:52:41

Hi all, took the liberty of starting a new thread. Keep on posting!

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 14:13:34

Thanks for all your support (((attila)))

Ok tis done gulp smile, thanks wtsa I need a bit of a shove sometimes.

So please let me know what you all think

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 11-Jan-10 13:44:37

Hi all

Ally90 (a MN poster I have an awful lot of respect for along with Sakura and the real Smithfield - infact a big shout out to you all actually except the trolls who have been here in the past) posted this originally when this thread was in Part 2. It certainly bears repeating.

(I do not post here very often but I have found it very helpful myself having got two self absorbed parents together with NPD inlaws and a BIL who is also NPD. Lucky old me huh?!. Anyway that's quite enough of my mad as a box of frogs rellies. I keep them all at arms length now and am a lot happier for doing so).

This is what she relayed at the time:-

"For the Adult Children of Abusive Families

For those unsure whether to post or not:

No one, but no one will say your abuse is not as bad as x or y or everybody else?s.
Nobody can judge how sad your childhood made you, even if you wrote a novel on it, only you know that. I can well imagine any of us saying some of the seemingly trivial things our parents/siblings did to us to many of our real life acquaintances and them not understanding why we were upset/angry/hurt etc. And that is why this thread is here. It?s a safe place to vent our true feelings, validate our childhood/lifetime experiences of being hurt/angry etc by our parent?s behaviour and to get support for dealing with family in the here and now.

Regarding divorcing parents, some of us have. Some are emotionally divorced. Some have separated. Some have set up boundaries. Some carry on as they are. Any of those or any I have not mentioned are fine".

wanttostartafresh Mon 11-Jan-10 13:03:30

sorry smile

wanttostartafresh Mon 11-Jan-10 13:03:05

TRS, you have been here longer than me so I think you should do the honours of starting the new thread. [smile}

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 11:42:26

That was a long winded way of saying no-one should feel like they are treading on eggshells either. People should feel they can express themselves freely just as long as they are also being respectful of the other posters feelings.

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 11:38:07

osahm I agree with what you are saying wrt self image. I think something ingrained in me is that I mustn't get things wrong. I mustn't say or do the wrong thing in case people feel I am bad or inadequate. Somrthing in my head is constantly saying 'dont f-k up smithfield...dont you dare f-k up.
In some ways this thread has helped that because I have been able to write more and more from the heart without worrying and constantly monitoring myself and what I am posting. I used to hide a bit behind helping others on here in order to not express what I was feeling. I was afraid of what people would think.
I have to admit I was worrying about saying 'anything' over the last few days for fear of saying the wrong thing. Somethimes you just have to go with your gut as bop and rose did.
I dont think you should need to go to another thread for stuff when you 'want' feedback. We can all do with asking for feedback and I have got lots of very constructive feedback on here often.
There are ways of challenging people though and I agree with what you said at the end of your post. I think that the incident we are all referring to was very different because it was 'minimising' wtsa's feelings and in a very aggressive confrontational way.
I think it became all about having the last word and 'winning' rather than genuinely giving constructive advice out of concern or care.
We all have a right to be cahllenged in the right way but a right to not be challenged when we are not ready to see things differently. So it is about respecting others needs. Our needs were never respected growing up so we find it difficult to feel entitled to have our needs respected and met.
Pages asked me on here way back why I needed my sisters approval. It was something no-one had asked me before and I was grateful for her for asking it because it really challenged my thinking in a good way.

OrdinarySAHM Mon 11-Jan-10 11:13:12

I'm very happy that you all want to carry on because I was getting the impression (maybe the wrong impression) that everyone was going to leave the thread!

Who cares if some people think you are stupid/wrong/bad/whatever? Not everyone thinks that and there are plenty of people on here who don't. (This is directed at everyone and nobody in particular.)

I've been reading in the Buddhism for Mothers book about letting go of the idea of self image. I'm not sure if I completely agree with it yet but was shocked by the truth that we spend so much of our time working on feeling better about our self image and whether other people see us as good or not. Maybe this is time wasted! Working on how to feel better full stop seems more worthwhile than working on how to look like a better person to others.

It seems more worthwhile to try to dismiss what other people might think of us and concentrate on how we actually feel, how to feel better and how to live in a way that makes the world around us feel good. The book talks about observing all the emotions that are passing through you and observing what is going on around you in the present moment and when this makes you able to concentrate better the answers as to what is required in the present situation will come to you more easily.

I like the idea of an explanation of the purpose of the thread at the top of each one. We could also do reminder posts at intervals. We can self-police it by reading posts and if someone is using critical language we can remind them in a non-confrontational way that this thread is for empathy, validation, and positive suggestions and that when we want to be 'challenged' we will post elsewhere. (Sometimes I do feel the need to be challenged so when I do I will post somewhere else and accept that people might react strongly/judgementally/negatively.)

If people think it will benefit someone to challenge their own beliefs and want to say it on this thread, they need to find a way to ask them gentle questions to get them to question themselves without making them feel like they are being judged. If you can't find the right words to do this then say nothing.

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 10:41:26

wtsa yes lets start a new thread straight away. Would you like to so the honours? There are a couple of links and the second one although we ended up not using it has a good explanation/ description of what the thread is about.
We should all take a responsibility for moderating the thread and ensuring the rules remain in tact.

wessel- Glad you found the courage to post. I too am daugher to a narcisstic mother so I know only too well how painful it is. Have you done much reading? I found 'trapped in the mirror' very helpful, but 'toxic parents' is always a good place to start.

leavingonaJP- Thanks for posting your support. I think if anything this incident can only make this thread stronger.
I'm glad you found it and hope to see you posting some more about your situation (whenever you feel able too) on the new thread.


wanttostartafresh Mon 11-Jan-10 10:21:14

Hi all. It is amazing how much this thread has become a part of my life. The thought of it ending was very sad.

I agree with Bop and TRS; I think the thread should stay in Relationships and it is a very good idea to put a description at the beginning just like Bop has said. Would it be an idea to start a new thread now instead of waiting til it reaches 1000 posts? Just a thought.

It has gradually been dawning on me that Bop has been the first person in all my life who has ever stood up for me. I was wracking my brains all weekend trying to think of an instance in RL when surely this must have happened during the past 39 years, but I honestly cannot think of even once. DH has stood up for me recently wrt his mother, but it felt like i had to almost force him to do it. But Bop, you stood up for me and spoke out on my behalf completely voluntarily and although no proof was needed at all, it does prove what an amazing person you are and you have no idea how it has made me feel to have somebody speak up on my behalf like you did. Thank you again for being so brave. I hope next time this sort of thing happens (because it probably will), i will have the confidence to follow my gut feeling and say something myself.

Wessel, am so glad you found your way to this thread. I cried too when i first found it.

Leavingonajetplane, am so glad you found this thread too. I have read most of Alice Miller's books and posted lots on here about her and am so pleased you found us by searching using her name.

Wessel Mon 11-Jan-10 04:24:19

Hi. I just found MN and this thread last week and was crying reading it (my mother has NPD and I am in the very early stages of dealing with it - it is especially hard after stuff which has happened recently); reading this thread and seeing the support and understanding blew my mind. I was psyching myself up to introduce myself but given the weekend's dramas it's probably not the time to wade in and put my issues out there but I wanted you all to know how amazing it is to know there are people out there like me, from families like mine, dealing with similar issues.

If the thread continues (which I really hope it does), I'd love to be a part of it.

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 00:53:42

Actually this one is the one you are talking about and it links to the one prior.

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 00:48:01

second thread here

therealsmithfield Mon 11-Jan-10 00:42:30

bop- I couldnt sleep and then came down and logged on to find your post and then I went like this grin because I was thinking along exactly the same lines, but could never have expressed it as well as you just did.
I dont want the troll/bully/person with severe anger ishoos to win this one I really dont.
Also like yourself I looked into chat and though gosh I cant really see us posting next to a thread entitled 'My norks hurt'wink.
Ok I am putting a light hearted spin on this now but in all seriousness the thread would be affected for all the reasons you have so clearly stated bop
We belong 'here' guys we really do and whats more people 'do' need us to be here. Lets not forget that 99% of posters who 'do' find their way here are the genuine article.

So my vote is 100% with bop.

And I would hate to lose any of you!

And bop you really 'are' brave because when someone has been bullied you know only too well that a bully can easily turn their attention to the next person who pipes up.
But you were willing to take that risk in order to make your voice heard.

I will see if I can post those links for you before I retire. Must sleep argggh!

BopTheAlien Sun 10-Jan-10 23:50:04

ps - well done Rose! smile

BopTheAlien Sun 10-Jan-10 23:49:01

Hi all. I was worried about things kicking off when I posted my original post, tho I didn't foresee quite how bonkers it would go. But I have to say I am still really glad I took a stand on this and am feeling proud of myself for doing so, because it wasn't easy for me to do at all - but the tone of the posts that I challenged was making me feel that it wasn't a safe space any more not just for WTSA, but for any of us. And I felt that if I didn't stand up for WTSA - after all, it's easier to stand up for someone else in many ways than for yourself, when you're not directly under attack yourself - then it was potentially only a matter of time before this poster or someone else had a go at me, or any one of us. And that is not what we come on here for. As TRS said, we get enough of that in RL. So I was doing it for me as well as out of loyalty to WTSA - and I do feel a great sense of loyalty to all those who post regularly on here, we do provide a unique type of support to each other and that is very valuable to me, and I do care about the progress of the people I have come to "know" on here and have felt cared about in return. Of course you will never have a situation where everybody agrees with everybody else 100% - but that was never the point; it wasn't about agreeing with each other or not, it was (or hopefully is) about us being able to say how it is/was for us, and not being told to shut up.

Anyway, moving on - I have a few thoughts re the future of the thread -
Personally, I would not like to see it move to chat. Chat implies superficial and inconsequential to me, and I imagine we could get a lot more people who just don't get the ethos of the thread accidentally barging in and slagging people off, in MN AIBU etc style. So while it would be more private in terms of disappearing after 90 days, while it was running it would be a lot less safe IMO. I know I first found it by looking in Relationships because that's what ultimately it is all about, so to me it feels logical to keep it here. That's just my opinion, anyway.

Secondly - I remember a while back Attila posted links to the original threads, and in the very first one there was a brilliant opening sort of bit, that said something along the lines of "this is a haven where no one will tell you that what happened to you wasn't that bad etc etc etc" - it was very well written and clear and I thought when I first read it that it would be a good idea to put it at the top of all future threads, just to make sure the point gets across. And so that people know what the thread is about. I didn't say that when I first thought it as I was relatively new to the thread and felt a bit funny about making suggestions to people who'd been on here much longer than me, but in the light of what's happened I think it would be more appropriate than ever. Can anyone find where those old threads are archived and copy it?

And lastly, the name of the thread - I loved the original title "but we took you to stately homes" - because I just got it immediately, it really reflected my situation, that particular brand of parental denial, and it was funny too, and I remember I was so excited when I saw the title - couldn't quite believe it, as I'd looked in Relationships half hoping but not really expecting that I would find people talking about and dealing with the same things that I was. I think the value of the title has been a bit lost with the change to "our nth visit" and that newcomers are less likely to work out what it's all about; but having said that I don't know if the old title worked for everyone else as well as it did for me. And maybe a bit of obscurity puts off some would be trolls, who knows. There have been a couple of people lately asking what the thread is about and I thought it would be good if it was clearer, but then again if someone has to ask, maybe it suggests this isn't the right place for them to post anyway. Just thinking out loud here... in a very long winded way...

Anyway, so there's my thoughts. I do hope the thread does survive, it is so important to so many - and the many "good" lurkers out there who don't post but do follow, I saw someone mention the thread in a positive way on another thread just last week, for example. And now it really is way past my bedtime, goodnight.

leavingonajetplane Sun 10-Jan-10 22:25:15

Ive been on mumsnet for months and just discovered this thread tonight. I put "alice miller" into the search box on the off chance a poster or thread covered the issues i'm reading about/dealing with and found this. Wow. I was dismayed to see from the last few posts what was happening, but would not be put off by a poster who seems to have their own agenda (and sounds nothing like a therapist)and would like to follow this thread wherever it moves too. Even just skimming down it a lot is jumping out at me and the bravery and support in this thread seems something quite different altogether.

OrdinarySAHM Sun 10-Jan-10 21:52:30

In case it is soon to be the end of this thread I want to say thank you so much everyone for 'listening' and supporting and advising all this time. It has helped me hugely! My life is improved!

wanttostartafresh Sun 10-Jan-10 19:44:22

TRS, i guess we won't know if they are the same person. It's easy enough to namechange and keep posting.

I'm happy to move to chat as well.

therealsmithfield Sun 10-Jan-10 18:34:08

Just a question, but how do we even know if Colorado and spiky are not one and the same?

It just didnt sit right with me at all.

I am happy to move to chat if that is what everyone would like to do?
This one is almost at capacity anyway so we would have been starting thread No 7 anyway.

wtsa Am glad you are ok. I felt uncomfortable over the first post which is why I posted from my own viewpoint.

bop Sorry neglected to ask after you as well. How are you doing? I truly hope we haven't lost you over this.

wanttostartafresh Sun 10-Jan-10 18:29:59

qd, even if it was in chat it could still get invaded by trolls?

I suppose i did kind of forget anyone could read it because it had felt 'private' for so long, nearly 3 years.

quietlydrowning Sun 10-Jan-10 18:19:37

Message withdrawn

wanttostartafresh Sun 10-Jan-10 18:19:26

TRS thanks for asking and yes i am ok now, but i was definately very upset over what has been happening on this thread. Luckily i am in a much stronger place these days than i have been in the past but like you said, these attacks could have been enough to really pull me down completely not so very long ago.

Bop i hope you're ok. Colorado is clearly a troll and i think you were spot on in your post to spiky, glad her 'disguise' didn't fool you.

quietlydrowning Sun 10-Jan-10 18:09:29

Message withdrawn

wanttostartafresh Sun 10-Jan-10 18:00:18

Hello all. Rose thank you for your support, i really do appreciate it.

I had been very upset by Spiky's posts to me and to be honest i didn't know how to respond. I was caught off guard as like TRS said this thread has been a sanctuary for me for nearly 3 years now where i have felt i can be totally honest about how i feel and know i will not be judged and criticised, if not necessarily always understood. So when spiky came along and appeared to be giving advice but was at the same time very critical of me, dismissive of my feelings and judgmental about my choices i was caught unawares. At first glance she appeared to be somebody who had been through a similar experience to all of us on this thread, but to me her posts immediately stood out as very different to everyone else's on here. NOBODY in all the time i have been on this thread has ever posted in the way she has, and i am sure there are plenty of people on here who simply cannot relate to my experience or my way of dealing with things. But the one thing everyone has so far had in common on this thread is complete respect for each other even if we might not understand another poster's feelings/opinions/decisions.

Perhaps we can all too easily forget that this thread can be read by anybody, because it does sometimes feel like we are in a private room all by ourselves. I remember not so long ago this particular thread was mentioned in a couple of national newspapers, including the Daily Mail. Somebody mentioned trolls and i suspect that spiky and colorado may both fall into this category. I don't think spiky is genuine although she clearly has enough knowledge about this subject to get away with posting something credible enough to appear as if she belongs on this thread.

Perhaps she wanted to make a personal attack on me because she knows me and my family in RL. I do sometimes think when posting that there are enough details on here about my family that anybody reading who might know me and my family might realise who i am. But I am not ashamed of anything i have posted on here. It all comes from the heart and if somebody wants to attack me because my posts make them feel uncomfortable then that truly is their problem.

It would be a real shame if this thread came to an end because it has been a real life saver for me at times and that is no exaggeration and i know it is a very important outlet and 24 hour source of support for the people who read and post on here.

I guess it's up to all of us to decide what we want to do from here but i think this recent episode is a wake up call that has reminded us that this thread is out in the public domain and is not actually the private sanctuary we believed it to be.

therealsmithfield Sun 10-Jan-10 17:41:55

I feel really sad at this whole lastest development I really do.

This thread has been running for 3 years perhaps longer and has had some of the strongest most empathic women I have ever come accross posting on it.
This thread also got me through some of my darkest days over the last few years. Thanks to the likes of Ally90, sakura and Pages and you OSAHM.

What concerns me is there will be other lurkers who may have posted, needed to post and probably wont now. Indeed may not even have the opportunity to do so if this thread is withdrawn.

We shouldnt need a 'non judgmental zone', why should we when in three years or more there has only ever been one other incident of judgment from poster 'outside' of this thread.

For the most part posters on MN as a whole have respected the 'unwritten code of conduct' linked with the thread that many of us have spoken about.

But are we really going to let one person break up a long running thread which has been the source of comfort to so many?

I have my own thoughts on the post we are talking about, but I would agree with osahm . I doubt very much a therapist would use such language. A therapist is supposed to do what we have all been doing on this thread for so long...validate other posters and make them feel as though someone is finally on side and 'gets' where they are coming from. Plus a therapist that had been following this thread for so long would recognise the vulnerability of the posters on here. It would be completely irresponsible of them. It could push someone over the edge to log on and read something like that FGS.

IMO if the poster 'is' a therapist they should be struck off.

I tend to agree with Rose however and the post has TROLL written all over it.

wtsa I really hope you are OK.

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