Friday, May 31, 2013

He gets it

"Let no feeling of discouragement prey
upon you, and in the end you
are sure to succeed."
- Abraham Lincoln 

I've done a bit of research on Abe Lincoln.  I admire his tenacity and going forward against depression and a country torn by unrest and civil war.  His own tragedies to me makes him an authority on this statement.  He was once accused of being two faced and he replied, "If I was two faced, do you think I would be wearing this one?"  Lincoln is one of the people that I admire him for his courage in the face of so much.

Discouragement and depression are sometimes described as the 'black dog' that haunts and grays our vision.  It is insidious like a fog creeping over the landscape.  Some times no specific source just a grayness that blankets and flattens everything in my world.  For several years I took pictures of gray.  I made it a self rule that I couldn't photochop it to make it gray, the subject had to be gray in the first place.  Over a hundred pictures later I realized that even in grayness there are subtle differences, nuances of change that are hard to define.  I used several pages of gray pictures in my book trying to pin down this feeling that seems to envelope me completely until my mind and body can barely function.  Interesting how Lincoln describes this feeling as a predator...a destroyer.  Much of the world seeks happiness, a shield to protect me from the grayness.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Re-booting your brain....

onebraveduck said:

i like the lean-to in a hurricane analogy. that’s like when my CAMH therapist made some suggestions to me, like deep breathing, and looking at art magazines before bed, etc, as a way of dealing with some compulsive behaviour and i was like “hah… that’s like using a feather against a concrete block” and she said something interesting. she said, the techniques are not about “fixing” the issue, or “distracting” or “denying” things, they are just to open up in your brain a new way for doing things… that you will come to learn in coming months, so it was about creating space for something new… it was interesting for me to look at it that way. first time anyone explained it that way. it’s like holding ice when you want to self-harm, i always thought it was about substituting one pain for another, but she said it’s about re-booting your brain. anyhoooooooo…. :-)

Over at Tesseract this comment was posted.  I love this explanation as to why other techniques of dealing with a problem can be helpful.  I also like Ellen's comment about some techniques are "like building a lean-to in a hurricane."  PTSD reactions are like an emotional hurricane ripping through my mind leaving nothing untouched.  I know KavinCoach talked to me OFTEN (as in many, many times) about becoming self-aware enough to pay attention to the first signs...the ones I always ignored.  Following the analogy those gusting winds that are hitting 80 miles per hour is the time to button down and get ready for a storm.  Too often I tried to keep going and carry on.  So not good for me.  I am learning that taking time to weather a storm and taking time to clean up afterwards is in my best interest. Where possible, I desensitize the trigger.  If that doesn't work, I  build a shelter around the trigger to keep me from having those triggers run my life.  Sometimes I just need to weather the storm and hug myself until it is over.

Moody Blues album Days of Future Passed introduced me to this poem.  I sometimes use it at night when nightmares are tormenting me.

Breathe deep the gathering gloom
Watch lights fade from every room
Bedsitter people look back and lament
Another day's useless energy spent

Impassioned lovers wrestle as one
Lonely man cries for love and has none
New mother picks up and suckles her son
Senior citizens wish they were young

Cold hearted orb that rules the night
Removes the colors from our sight
Red is grey and yellow white
But we decide which is right
And which is an illusion?

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Types of bullies

 This article is excellent at describing the different types of bullies.

But I focus on 5 types of bullies and their tactics:
  1. Overt bullies.
  2. Covert bullies.
  3. Cyberbullies.
  4. “Professional Victims.”
  5. Self-bullies.

One of the things I struggle with is how to recognize them. Are they making a legitimate request or are they bullying me into doing what they want done?Am I being over sensitive?  How can I know what it feels like?

Overt bullies are the easiest to figure out since they are usually unpleasant to enough other people that I can get validation that this person is a bully.  I can usually identify them quickly on a play ground, at work, or even on the freeway.  They want their own way not matter what and I feel less when I am around them.  I feel uncomfortable when they make fun of someone else.  To the best of my ability I avoid this variety.  Harder to do when they are at work.  I did learn with my nasty boss how to document every encounter.  Even if we just exchanged words in the hallway, I documented every thing.  Came in handy when the bosses boss finally started asking questions.  He is no longer a boss at the company.  My job is to recognize that I need to protect myself from an overt bully. 

Covert bullies can be very tough to pin down; especially if they single me out in private.  In public everything can be sweetness and niceness but in private is a whole different story.   This is when I have to listen for myself for key phrases, like "you should" or "you have to" or other red-flag phrases that clue me in on covert bullying behavior.  This is where emotions are very valuable.  I feel afraid or annoyed if I have to be alone with the person.  I feel used.  I feel like what's wrong with this relationship.  Hard thing about this type of bully I may not get validation from someone else that knows them.  If they are not a target, they may not understand what is happening.  Covert bullies excel at actions that are deniable...I misunderstood, I didn't hear the whole thing, I am too sensitive, or plain old fashion 'gas lighting.' (Explanation of gas lighting Clues to myself that I encountered a covert bully other people see a very different person.  I don't want to be alone with them.  I find reasons to avoid their company.  I feel squashed or belittled.  My emotions are usually my first clue that all is not right when I encounter a covert bully. 

Cyberbullies, I call them trolls, at a mild level can be annoying.   However, a cyberbully intent on doing harm will call in the internet troops and start a rash of harassment.  They use mob mentally to target one person.  They persuade others that someone deserves some form of punishment for their behavior.  I first encountered a cyberbully the first year I took care of computers over 15 years ago.  They tracked the student to the school I worked at, fortunately for me, the child was not in my computer lab.  He wrote threatening emails and generally harassed a little 6th grade girl clear across the country.  When confronted he shrugged his shoulders and said it was just the computer.  Yes, the authorities did track him down and no there wasn't much they could do to him since he was a minor and no laws were in place at the time to do much about what he had done.  I hope the parents figured out a suitable no computer time for a year or two....wishful thinking on my part.  I usually try to give most people the benefit of the doubt at first.  Written language translated from another language may come off sounding different than expected.  Sometimes people in a hurry write things and don't realize how it might sound to someone else.  If I get more than one nasty email or comment I then recognize the cyberbully for what they are, not welcomed.

I loved that he included "Professional Victims" in his list of bullies.  I encounter way too often.  I especially noticed in the computer labs.  The 'helpless' soul that flails their hands and swear they don't know what to do.  Doesn't matter that you already gave them the same set of instructions 10 times.  Their helplessness is how the manipulate to do their work for them.  I don't mind a person that needs help but I have to be careful to watch for these time sucking, playing dumb, manipulators that are just trying to get me to do what they are capable of doing.  I realize this is a hot button for me so when a person asks for help I need to be careful not to overreact or misjudge a person that genuinely needs help.  I learned that if I feel really good after helping someone, they are usually the real deal.  However, if I feel like I was taken advantage of, hoodwinked, or manipulated I probably was.  I also noticed that "Professional Victims" either gush their thanks over the tiniest thing or don't thank me at all.  "Professional Victims" become more obvious over time since they use the same tactics over and over to get there way.

The last category was bewildering for me to understand.  KavinCoach told me to fire the nasty boss that expected me to be 20 minutes early and stay 15 minutes late for work, never let me forget the smallest mistake, chastised me more than any abuser...of course that bully was me.  I was really mean to myself.  I took the actions of my abusers and internalized their behavior into vicious tapes that I played to myself.  Of all the bullies this one is most difficult.  I learned that things like self-acceptance, self-confidence, and self-love go along way to curing this bully forever.  Of all the bullies, I have the most control over the outcome.  I am learning to be kinder to myself, more understanding and more accepting of the challenges I have and how I react to them. 

Over all, I thought this was a great article to review and see where I stood on protecting myself.  There is one more category that I want to address that is the occasional bully.  This person is in a hurry, misunderstood something about the situation, or just having an off day.  What I learned about the occasional bully is when I bring the situation to their attention there is usually an apology or an explanation that makes sense and easily is worked out.  But if I say nothing, then being treated poorly more frequently can happen.  This is when I understood that how I am treated is directly related to how I allow myself to be treated.  I am learning more everyday.  It is empowering to calmly tell a bully, "You can not treat me like that." 

Bullies are personal terrorists.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

True humility

Is true humility compatible with good self-esteem? I think so, & in fact, to me they go hand-in-hand. True humility isn't about self-deprecation or feeling undeserving of good things. True humility is recognizing that you're an imperfect, flawed human being; that you don't know everything & that you're still learning. True humility is recognizing your strengths & areas of weakness; your assets & deficits; successes & failures. True humility comes from looking at yourself with ruthless compassion. It's seeing yourself with loving-kindness but without self-indulgence. When you embody true humility you can accept yourself fully without resting on your laurels. You're motivated to keep growing & improving as a person. The person who is truly humble has nothing to prove to anyone. They aren't arrogant, self-important or a know-it-all; they aren't cynical or rigid in their thinking. The person who is truly humble has an open mind & an open heart & can get along with anyone, anywhere. Are you ready to begin practicing true humility?

This is one of the best definitions of humility that I have ever seen.  I like how it explains about not being arrogant, self important or a know-it-all.  I do distinguish between being a know-it-all and someone that knows-a-lot.  Know-it-all shares their opinions as undisputed facts sometimes having no truth to base it on.  I remember the day I was in the computer lab as the tech.  One of the students was printing on silk.  I reminded him that if he planned to sew that fabric he would need to use a #9 needle so not to punch holes in the fabric.  He was astounded and exclaimed, "Do you know everything?"  I blushed, I had only tried to help.  Then I calmly replied, "No, I just happen to know a lot about computers and sewing."  (I used to sew professionally.)  I learned that sometimes just because I know something it doesn't mean the other person wants to hear it.  I think another factor of true humility is complete honesty.  I want to stop the lies in my life and the first one I need to stop lying to is myself.  However, I also need to give myself credit for my successes.  In counseling, I spent so much of my time focusing on what was wrong with me.  I am working on taking my strengths and make them stronger.  I am not a chain.  In a chain, it is only as good as its weakest link.  I can use strengths to build up my weak points.  I can take my weaknesses and make them strengths.  A combination of using strengths and strengthening weakness will help me to grow in confidence and thrive.  That is my theory.  I don't need to prove it to anyone else except myself.  

To me, there are several great examples of true humility that I can study and learn from, Mother Teresa, Gandhi, and Jesus Christ.  My favorite is Christ.  He knew who he was without apology or deprecation.  He knew a lot and tried to share what he knew but recognized that some people did not want to hear what he had to say.  He was willing to learn.  He recognized when he needed help.  His confidence and peace inspired a desire for others to be around him.  I learned to admire Gandhi when I was a teenager.  I heard on the news about his hunger strikes.  People paid attention.  He made a difference.  Mother Teresa picked a task in a remote part of the world away from all she knew to set up a place where street people of India could have a place to die in dignity.  Her simple task affected thousands around the globe.  I have examples of what humility looks like.  I appreciate Ruthless Compassion sharing a definition that makes sense to me.  

Monday, May 27, 2013

In Flander's Field

by John McCrae, May 1915
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Laurel Hawkes, Author This morning, I attended a lovely Memorial Day service.
As long as there are men who value power more than freedom and life, there will need to be men who value freedom and life more than power. God bless our troops, who are willing to fight and die for freedom and life.
Thank you, God, for those men and women willing to fight and die for the right of those they love to live free.

Thank you to those heroes' families and loved ones who must face every day the empty place at the table.

God bless.

Today, I dedicate my post to the brave men and women throughout the world that fight to protect others.  Those that server their country to the betterment of others and a fight for liberty.  Years ago I saw the movie 'Renaissance Man' with Danny DeVito.  In the movie, he uses Shakespeare's Hamlet to inspire his students to pass.  At one point, the drill sergeant complains about them wasting their time.  One of DeVito's students stands in the rain and gives the Soliloquy of a Soldier.  After that, the sergeant teaches all his troops Shakespeare.  I, like so many others, wish that there was no war any where in the world.  However, I know first hand that evil exists and will enslave others to bend them to their will.  The soldier stand between us and enslavement.  I am thankful for every soldier serving.

Just received this from my sister:

As I came out of the supermarket that sunny day, pushing my

cart of groceries towards my car, I saw an old man with the

hood of his car up and a lady sitting inside the car, with the

door open. The old man was looking at the engine. I put my

groceries away in my car, and continued to watch the old

gentleman from about twenty five feet away.

I saw a young man in his early twenties with a grocery bag in

his arm walking towards the old man. The old gentleman saw

him coming too, and took a few steps towards him.

I saw the old gentleman point to his open hood and say something.

The young man put his grocery bag into what looked like a brand

new Cadillac Escalade. He then turned back to the old man. I

heard him yell at the old gentleman saying:'You shouldn't even

be allowed to drive a car at your age.' And then with a wave of his

hand, he got in his car and peeled rubber out of the parking lot.

I saw the old gentleman pull out his handkerchief, and mop his brow

as he went back to his car and again looked at the engine. He then

went to his wife and spoke with her; he appeared to tell her it would

be okay. I had seen enough, and I approached the old man. He saw

me coming and stood straight, and as I got near him I said, 'Looks

like you're having a problem.'

He smiled sheepishly, and quietly nodded his head. I looked under

the hood myself, and knew that whatever the problem was, it was

beyond me. Looking around, I saw a gas station up the road, and

I told the old man that I would be right back. I drove to the station

and went inside. I saw three attendants working on cars. I approached

one of them, and related the problem the old man had with his car.

I offered to pay them if they could follow me back down and help him.

The old man had pushed the heavy car under the shade of a tree and

appeared to be comforting his wife. When he saw us he straightened

up and thanked me for my help. As the mechanics diagnosed the

problem (overheated engine), I spoke with the old gentleman.

When I shook hands with him earlier, he had noticed my Marine

Corps ring and had commented about it, telling me that he had been

a Marine too. I nodded and asked the usual question, 'What outfit

did you serve with?'

He said that he served with the first Marine Division at Guadalcanal ,

Pelieliu, and Okinawa . He had hit three of the worst ones, and retired

from the Corps after the war was over. As we talked we heard the car

engine come on and saw the mechanics lower the hood. They came

over to us as the old man reached for his wallet, but was stopped by

me. I told him I would just put the bill on my AAA card.

He still reached for the wallet and handed me a card that I assumed

had his name and address on it, and I stuck it in my pocket. We all

shook hands all around again, and I said my goodbye's to his wife.

I then told the two mechanics that I would follow them back up to the

station. Once at the station, I told them that they had interrupted

their own jobs to come along with me and help the old man. I said I

wanted to pay for the help, but they refused to charge me. One of

them pulled out a card from his pocket, looking exactly like the card

the old man had given to me. Both of the men told me then that they

were Marine Corps Reserves. Once again we shook hands all around

and as I was leaving, one of them told me I should look at the card the

old man had given to me. I said I would and drove off.

For some reason I had gone about two blocks, when I pulled over and

took the card out of my pocket and looked at it for a long, long time.

The name of the old gentleman was on the card in golden leaf and

under his name was written: 'Congressional Medal of Honor Society.'

I sat there motionless, looking at the card and reading it over and over.

I looked up from the card and smiled to no one but myself and marveled

that on this day, four Marines had all come together because one of us

needed help. He was an old man all right, but it felt good to have stood

next to greatness and courage, and an honor to have been in his presence.

Remember, as we approach another Memorial Day, OLD men like

him gave you, and all of us, FREEDOM for America .

Thanks to those who served and still serve, and to all of those who

supported them, and who continue to support them.

America is not at war. The U.S. Military is at war. America is at the


If you don't stand behind our troops, PLEASE feel free to stand in

front of them! Remember, Freedom isn't Free. Thousands have paid

the price, so that you can enjoy what you have today.




This prayer is so powerful.
Author unknown....just someone that sent it in an email to touch someone else's heart.  It did.  


Sunday, May 26, 2013

PTSD body and mind

PTSD is in your body, not just your mind

I didn’t understand this for a long time.

PTSD feels like it’s IN your mind. But that’s not completely true. It also inhabits your body, and most of the symptoms you experience directly affect your body, via your adrenal system.

This is a common misunderstanding. After all when PTSD symptoms are triggered, your ability to think rationally disappears. Your brain turns to mush and functioning like a ‘normal’ person is out of the question.

But here’s what you need to know: PTSD causes a disorder of the HPA (hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal) Axis.

This is the connection between your brain (where you perceive the trauma symptoms to be occurring) and the body (your adrenal system)

Join Us Battle Buddy

 Sometimes I run across something that rocks my thinking. Thanks to my sister for posting this today.  I talked to doctors ever since I was 15 years old wanting to know what was wrong with me.  One doctor said adrenal collapse which meant nothing to me.  I was tested so many different ways including a complete brain MRI...hours of poking, prodding, blood tests all came back normal.  They kept telling me it was all in my head.  Out of frustration I asked, "If it is all in my head, why does my body hurt so much?"  I think I just found the starting of an answer.  One of the things it may originate in my head but my body is suffering too.

I learned along time ago that my search for answers is not short and does not go in a linear path, zigs, zags and hops challenge me to keep moving forward.  I pray for answers but they don't come by my time schedule or in a way that I expect.  However, through the Spirit of the Holy Ghost I can learn the truth of all things, not just spiritual questions, but all of my life questions.  Another piece to my puzzle randomly posted on facebook and reposted by my sister.  My summer project to become healthier just had another possibility added to it.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Mary Kay

"For every failure, there's an alternative
course of action. You just have to find it.
When you come to a roadblock,
a detour."
- Mary Kay Ash

Click Here For Success Tip # 037

I have a premonition
That soars on Silver Wings
It’s a dream of your accomplishment
Of many Wondrous things.
I do not know beneath which sky
Or where you’ll challenge fate.
I only know it will be high!
I only know it will be great!
(Author unknown)

Found at 

"Do you know that within your power lies every step you ever dreamed of stepping,
and within your power lies every joy you ever dreamed of seeing? Within yourself lies
everything you ever dreamed of being. Become everything that God wants you to be. It
is within your reach. Dare to grow into your dreams and claim this as your motto: Let it be me."
-- Mary Kay Ash

 I was introduced to Mary Kay by my daughters.  (My in-law daughters are my daughters too.)  I knew I would never be able to sale heaters to Eskimos but I bought her leadership program.  Several volumes and CDs that came monthly.  I tried to read them and realized the concepts were not something I was ready for yet.  I packed them away and waited.  I am waiting until I have built a stronger foundation under what I am learning about being healthy.  Mary Kay knows how to thrive.  She builds dreams and encourages others to follow.

Friday, May 24, 2013

What we do....

"What we think or what we know
or what we believe is, in the
end, of little consequence.
The only consequence is what we do"
- John Ruskin

I've waited for awhile for just the right post to go with this quote. Saved in draft for a while now.

I talked to MyCounselor about my food issues.  While waiting for graduation to end for our school's seniors, I hand wrote my up-to-the-minute thoughts about me and food.  It matters very little about what I think about food it is what I put in my mouth that counts.  I can believe I am eating healthy but a calorie is a calorie no matter what I think about it.  It was a tough session as I shared all the disjointed whacked-out beliefs I have about food.  MyCounselor brought my thoughts to a screeching halt when he simply said, "If you diet, your mother wins."  Aaaaggghhhh.   You know, teenagers will cut off their nose despite their face in their need to rebel.  I am not much different.  I know I need to change how I eat.  My heart depends on it.  What I put in my mouth has a direct correlation with how I feel everyday.  One of my statements: "I eat what I want when I want it."  MyCounselor told me to own that thought.  I do eat what I want when I want it.  That is the most empowering statement I made.  It was said in defiance but it is the crux of changing my life time habits.  One of my concerns is flipping to the other side and becoming anorexic.  My grandmother weighed less than 80 lbs when she came to live with us, years and years ago.  She had it before the word became popular.  She creeped me out looking like a skeleton with skin stretched over her bones.  I wrote a research report about anorexia and learned that the first documented case was in the 1600 or 1700's.  The reasons have changed the beliefs have changed but the consequence of starving yourself is the same.  Anorexia, bulimia, any major eating disorder lead to life threatening situation.  I eat what I want when I want it.  My new mantra for changing my lifestyle to one that meets my bodies needs.  I am not going to diet, I am changing my life.  BTW I learned to like unsalted peanuts.  Once I stopped expecting them to be salty, they are quite delicious in their own way.  I choose to eat them.  I can work them into my lifestyle in a way that is healthy.  I am 50+ pounds over weight.  However, I don't believe I will become a better person because I loose weight.  I am a good person now that needs to be kinder to my heart.  I plan to dance at my grand daughters wedding and she is only 7 years old.  I am at the beginning of my path.  My team is in place.  My doctor is checking on my cholesterol and blood sugar levels, my daughter is my exercise coach, MyCounselor is helping me unravel my unhealthy thoughts and beliefs, but I have to do the work of creating a healthy life for myself.  No obsessing about weight to the exclusion of all else.  Steady progress down a path towards a healthier me.  What I do makes all the difference. 

Some of this will be worked into my lifestyle too. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

When you're going through hell...

Keep going.

I can do anything for 5 minutes.  I've lived years at a time in 5 minute increments.

Slogging through thigh high mud focus on the next step and don't loose your shoes.

Hard times are not a punishment.  They are just crap that everyone hits at some point in their life. 

If you think someone else's life is all great, get to know them better.

Screwing up is not the end of the world.  Consequences will happen but if you are still alive, it's not over.

Shake it off and step up.

Feeling blue - Breathe.

'Ere you wander on through life brother, whatever be your goal -
Keep your eye upon the donut and not upon the hole.

Years ago I was sent a story in an email.  I didn't save it.  Wished I had.  The story goes that a guy was having a dream that he could see the cross he was carrying.  He was tired of dragging this huge cross with him everywhere he went.  He came to a door with a small plaque that said that he could place the cross inside then go around to another door and choose another cross.  He did just that.  When he walked through the second door he saw a huge array of monstrously huge crosses.  He picked his way through and around until he find a much smaller cross than all he saw.  He picked it up then recognized that it was his own cross he had to carry. 

What if.....
What if my life was easier, would I be as compassionate to my fellow life travelers?
What if I had all the money I wanted, would I know how someone else struggles?
What if I had never been sick, would I understand the suffering around me?
What if's can drive a person to believe they have nothing, for the focus is on what I don't have.
When I look at what I do have, I find my abundant life.

Tonight I talk to MyCounselor about my relationship with food.  I discovered that I am struggling to write about it.  I'll be interested to see if I can actually tell him.  I have enough to eat.  I am not going hungry.  I have an extra 50 pounds telling me I am not short of anything.  The fear of starvation is but a memory that refuses to fade.  Feel the fear and let it go.  

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

You don't need an expert?

"Success is not the key to happiness.
Happiness is the key to success.
If you love what you are doing,
you will be successful."
- Albert Schweitzer

Click Here For Success Tip # 014

Reading a book is like a conversation with someone who won't listen to you. I am reading the book Authentic Happiness by Martin E.P. Seligman, Ph.D.  Yesterday, I read the line, "Enhancing the Pleasures: At the outset, I must say that you don't need an expert to advise you about the pleasures in your own life."  If I could have spoken to the author, I would probably sarcastically come back with, "Speak for yourself buck-o."  I still remember the day KavinCoach asked me what I enjoyed.  I looked at him blankly.  He watched me totally shut down on him.  What gave me pleasure was not in the area that I could say yea or nay.  He assigned me to watch the movie Runaway Bride with Julia Roberts for that weeks homework.  There is one scene in the movie where she is asked what kind of eggs does she like.  It shows her saying the same type of egg of whatever fiance she is engaged to at the time.  Adult children of narcissistic parents sometimes struggle with the concept that they can enjoy something separate from what their parent dictates.  After watching that movie, several of my counseling sessions (read that as many) revolved around what do I like, what gives me pleasure, how do I feel, and all the things that this author and many other people take for granted.  I can now answer that question:

I like my eggs sunny side up.
I enjoy walking early in the morning with my sister on Saturdays.
I like NCIS.
I like taking pictures.
I like smelling roses perferably with my eyes closed.
I like eating a little chocolate.
I like Zumba.
I like bread sticks.
I like visiting with my kids.
I like....

I can now go on and on and on about the things I like.  I needed to stop and think and check in with myself.  People without narcissistic parents wonder how I could possibly not know what I like.  It was easy, this is how it happened:

"Mommy, I love this."
"Don't call me mommy that is my mother's name, how can you love this there is this and this and this wrong with it?" 

This denial of what I expressed as pleasurable was just the beginning.    Then came the manipulations using the things that I find pleasurable.  If I enjoyed a food, it became a reward or a punishment by withholding access to it.  Anything I liked, gave me pleasure, or expressed enjoyment became a way to get me to do things that were hurtful.  The week after KavinCoach asked me what brought me joy, I brought back to the next session an Almond Joy bar with a huge fish hook sticking up through the letter 'o' in joy.  KavinCoach had his work cut out for him to teach that it was safe to feel and say what I like. I believe one of the greatest gifts KavinCoach shared with me, feeling pleasure without fear.

Got your Back