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 Post subject: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2010 1:23 pm 
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I have a habit of doing what I want in the short-term and having it backfire on me in the long-term. I know what I should do in this situation, but, childishly, I.DON'T.WANT.TO!

Anyway, I thought I'd try to apply the Five Steps and see if I can get any kind of perspective on the problem,

1. HALT

Hungry- a bit, I haven't eaten breakfast yet
Angry- yes! furious! why should I have to clean up after my housemates?!?!
Lonely- more afraid of being lonely if I go back to my house
Tired- yes, a little bit

2. Determine What the Problem Is

I am supposed to go back to my house (I'm at my boyfriend's)
and do my dish day chores. I am angry because it is a huge job because no one cleans up after themselves, and because other people are not doing their dish days. If I don't do it, I risk being fined $20 and having my housemates mad at me (I complain so much about them not doing their chores, not doing mine would be hypocritical). The $20 fine is for not doing your dish day twice in a quarter.

3. Come Up With Three Possible Courses of Action

#1: Stay here or go to a coffeeshop; ignore the problem
#2: Go home and do the chore
#3: Go home, eat breakfast, and then reassess

4. Figure Out Which One Is Best For Now

Probably #3

5. DO IT!

*!&^#%$# I don't want to!!!
(I think my fear of being alone/bored is playing into this quite a bit)

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Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2010 9:35 pm 
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I love seeing you work the 5 steps-- it really works! I can also really, really relate to liking that instant gratification-- it's like sometimes even when I know I'll have to pay consequences it just seems DIRE that I do whatever I want to do. Overcoming that is a big battleground for me.....but at least now I'm aware of my tendency.

I know this is probably too late, but in reading.....I dunno. All of your solutions point to the problem being that you needed to wash dishes but didn't want to. Isn't/wasn't a BIG part of the problem (or cause of) the anger that no one else was pulling their share? Could you work the 5 steps on how to handle the anger associated with that? Or maybe just how to handle anger? Or maybe another part of the problem associated with this would be that you would feel lonely if you go back to your house? Maybe the 5 steps on how to handle the loneliness?

I guess what I'm trying to say is it sounds to me like more than one problem, requiring more than one 5 step work-up (or at least this problem is more complex). I know that seems over-kill.....but we have to really suss out what's what to 'fix' this stuff for good.

How did it go-- what did you wind up doing? How do you feel about it?

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"Pain is resistance to change."
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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:24 pm 
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Hey Harmonium,

Yeah, I really like (in theory) how the 5 Steps work. Now just to get myself to try it on the really hard stuff!

I have this idea that since the loneliness and anger really have me stuck, its useless to try to use the 5 Steps. Well, since the anger is not really that big of a deal at this exact moment, maybe I'll try doing the 5 Steps on that.

1. HALT

Hungry- yes, its dinnertime
Angry- well, not at the moment, but in general, a bit; both about the cleanliness issue itself and about the fact that I get so frustrated over it.
Lonely- not at the moment
Tired- yes, I've been tired a lot lately

2. Determine What the Problem Is

I get really angry when my housemates don't do their share of their chores or the dishes, leaving a huge mess for me or someone else to do. I get mad when I have to live in a dirty house.

3. Come Up With Three (four?) Possible Courses of Action

#1: Try to solve the problem
#2: Rant and rave about it
#3: Lose control and have a temper tantrum
#4: Practice gratitude and realize that it might not be a permanent issue

4. Figure Out Which One Is Best For Now

Probably a combination of #1 and #4. Number 3 is all around bad news (though I have made that choice plenty of times in the past), and #2 has not solved the problem nor has it made me less angry.

5. Do It!

Easier said than done, miss!

I really need to start practicing gratitude again, recent events have just thrown me totally off. I've gotten so good at realizing what's wrong in my life that I have a hard time enjoying the delicious coffee my boyfriend made for me. (Actually, that's a lie; its wonderful coffee.) Its definitely most difficult to practice gratitude when I'm angry, but sometimes, SOMETIMES, it takes the edge off.

As for solving the problem of the house being dirty, I'm kind of thinking it will solve itself once the school year starts again and people aren't partying every night of the week. I'm also going to have to suck it up sometimes and spend the two hours cleaning, even if it'll just be dirty again the next day. I could do what some of my more socially-adept housemates have done, and get someone to help me with the cleaning. We'll see what happens. I can't expect that it won't bother me anymore, indeed, thinking about it still does. But maybe I'll be able to appreciate the house more now when it actually IS clean(ish)!

Thanks for listening! Be well.

-Bewilderness

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Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:32 pm 
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Oh, btw, in case any of you are interested:

That day, I went back to the house, took pictures of how bad it was and decided that it was too much. 10 minutes after the pics were up on Facebook, I went back into the kitchen and one of my housemates and his friend (who doesn't live here) were doing all the dishes! Since it was my dish day, I did the stove-top and the table, which took about 10min. I spent the rest of the day in my room, and when I came out for dinner it was SO much better, not exactly sparkling, but hey, it was done, counters wiped, drains unclogged, dishes washed and put away!

This kind of thing rarely happens but it was awesome. I wasn't happy about having to do the dinner dishes later that night (my housemate was of the opinion that I should have been, since he had made the work so easy for me), but I was definitely a lot less furious.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 8:19 am 
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You are doing great with working the 5 steps-- just keep doing it! Sometimes it takes many tries or even doing them in retrospect to figure out the best way to handle something (especially an on-going issue!).
Quote:
I have this idea that since the loneliness and anger really have me stuck, its useless to try to use the 5 Steps.

Ahhh......"If one part is wrong, the whole thing is going to go wrong" or "If I don't try I can't fail"-- do those sound familiar? If so, see the tool on how to untwist your thoughts-- I know I've had to use it a bunch!!

The point of halt isn't to just give up if any of them apply-- gosh, then I'd Never get through it! It's simply to recognize that any of those things (hunger, anger, lonliness, sleepiness) may be effecting how severely you see the situation. In other words, I know that if I have a problem and I'm really hungry, I need to eat before I even begin to tackle it or I'll just lash out. Some things you can't really change as quickly though, so just being aware that they are influencing your emotional state is helpful.

Also, it's the acronym that counts to-- HALT. That means to stop and breath/pause for a moment before doing anything. With BPD, we tend to just react. The goal is to begin to find a way to act rather than re-act if you get my meaning.

One last thing....in all of your 5 steps, I haven't seen a solution saying something to the effect of:
"calmly and rationally sit my housemates down and explain to them how I feel about this, listening openly to their side(s) and trying to form a solution to the situation together"
Would that be an option for you?

Just some ideas-- take what you like and leave the rest. Keep up the good work BeWild (can I call you BeWild, I really like it and it's easier to type?)!

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"Pain is resistance to change."
--Ida Rolf

BRING IT ON!! -- personal mantra


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 5:14 pm 
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Dang, 5 mo. later! The dish thing is still a problem, but I'm moving out of the house (monetary reasons) and so I only have 2 more dish days, lol. At least there's one thing to look forward to about moving back in with the parents.
/digression

I haven't done the 5 steps in forever, so I think I will now, just cause... but since nothing is pressing on me right now (except boredom) I'm going to revisit an event I didn't handle so well.

HALT (at the time I didn't, but let's see what I would have come up with if I had.)
Hungry-- maybe a little, I'd skipped lunch
Angry-- furious
Lonely-- no
Tired-- no

Determine what the problem is:
I gave my brother my car keys and we fought over when he'd bring the car back; now I'm afraid I won't have access to my car to meet my friend for dinner.

Determine 3 possible courses of action:
1. Demand my car keys back
2. Resign to the fact that my brother has the keys now and hope he brings the car back in time; see if my friend can pick me up.
3. Come up with a way to negotiate a return time with my brother who is currently angry that he doesn't have free access to my car.
4. Call my parents and ask for advice.

At the time I was completely unwilling to do number 2, and didn't have the skills to do number 3.

Decide which is the best course of action FOR NOW:
Probably #2 and #4, then maybe #3 later, after I'd calmed down.

.... I did #4, they didn't pick up, then #1, and he refused. It escalated from there. I eventually got my keys back, but at the cost of my relationship with my brother.

I still don't know what I should have done in that situation. I was WAY too angry to do #2, even though I probably should have.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:44 am 
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Sorry is it your car or your brother's car?

Is there some kind of expectation on your brother's side that he'll get free access to your car?

Just curious :)


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:31 am 
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Technically its my mom's car, but I've been driving it, paying for its gas, oil, and other maintenance for the past two years.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:20 am 
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I see!

Perhaps your bro feels justified in that he should have right to access to the car too...


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:33 pm 
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Yes, my brother felt quite entitled to the use of the/my car. I felt (and still feel) differently... which isn't to say that I was unwilling to let him use the car... I gave him the keys after all.

But when he refused to respect my feelings and needs I got angry... I expected... something from him. Gods that man knows how to trigger me!

Anyway, I'm wondering what I should have done (this having happened a month ago). I did the 5 Steps but I'm still at a loss.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:50 pm 
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Bewilderness,

Not to get too nit-picky, but you should really keep it to three options and only three. That's the magic number. Black, White, Grey. Yes, No, Maybe. Any more than that, and you're clouding the issue. Any less than that and you're in black/white thinking or just plain old deadset in your ways unwilling to see anything else. So THREE options is the key. If you come up with four, narrow it down to three.

And in a certain, that's what you did. You basically had 1, 2, 4 open. You tried 4 and it went nowhere so you went back to 1, 2, 3. That's the way the steps are designed to work, but with conscious awareness is usually best.

That said, for # 3, what's a good way to negotiate what you want? To give something they want. "Hey, bro, if you can come pick me up & drop me at XYZ place by 7pm, I'll _____ for you tomorrow." Not ideal (especially if you truly think of it as "your car") but that's another discussion entirely. Cuz if you think of it as Bewilderness's Car, then you get set in the state of mind that "I shouldn't have to give him something to get back something that is rightfully mine in the first place" which feeds the anger monster, I think.

If you can see it more as Mom's Car, then it becomes easier to negotiate for things like that. A tiny shift in perspective can make all the difference in the world sometimes.

The more you work with the steps, the easier it becomes to negotiate your way through the world and your relationships.

And since you feel like you've damaged the relationship with your brother, is there anything you could do or offer to do to make things up to him? Take him somewhere? Do a chore for him? Give him something?

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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 4:01 am 
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I know how this sounds but... I'm right, dammit! Why should I have to bend over backwards in an attempt to see things his way (which I can) when no matter what I do my brother treats me like shit?

Regardless of whose car it really is, its my call whether to share nicely and I demand some respect for being willing to do so when it was not made clear from the outset that I would be expected to. If I had known my brother felt entitled to the car I would not have willingly been in the same place as him! My parents see it as my car and so do I. They gave it to ME to drive, the only difference is they pay for it, so they could take it away if they wanted to.

My brother and my relationship has never been good, and I see no reason why I should have to make up with him. If anything, he should make up with me for all the --dare I call it abuse?-- that he's put me through. My brother KNOWS what I'm capable of and yet continuously pushes my buttons. The only emotion he's ever showed toward me is disgust, and he feels entitled to be treated like this superior being he sees himself as, every desire catered to, all sacrifices made for him.

Maybe my thinking is a little twisted here, but I don't feel the necessity to change. I've given my relationship with my brother countless chances, and its not going to change unless both of us are willing to work on ourselves. I will not submit to my brother's poor treatment of me any more! I'm done with that shit.

And yet, every time I see him, I'm stuck in the old habit of trying to win his approval, which he's never given and will never give me. I wonder if he purposefully uses this power he has over me.

So what could I do in the future if it is someone else acting the same way? How do you deal with conflicting expectations? I shouldn't have to compromise when the other party is both unwilling to compromise and emotionally aggressive! ...should I? It seems like a recipe to get taken advantage of.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 4:26 am 
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hey bewilderness, just a thought from me :)

you know the 'my stuff, his/ her stuff' tool / thingy?

If I were to apply it here, it would look like this:

Your brother is responsible for what he does (pushing the buttons and all, intentionally or unintentionally),

BUT
you are responsible for the way you respond and react to him.



Assuming that he is intentionally pushing your buttons, or using his power over you,
could you think of how you can stand your ground WITHOUT 'losing your head'?


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 1:54 pm 
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Thank you mere for that. I'd forgotten about the Tools and indeed have stopped taking responsibility for my own recovery. If I ever had taken responsibility.

He just makes me so mad! No.... I get mad when I'm around him because I expect things from him that he does not or cannot give me.

Taking responsibility is hard!

I think part of my problem is that when I feel triggered, I don't think I HAVE a choice. But I do.
I think I have to a) avoid situations where I feel powerless (i.e. don't give him things)
and b) practice asserting myself and my needs and be willing to compromise

Being willing to compromise is hard when I feel like I shouldn't have to. I wonder if there is any way to make it easier.

_________________
Where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?
This road is paved with good intentions because intent is irrelevant. Not all who burn are witches.
Sometimes the best way to get out is to keep going through.
Be wild: accept it as it is, for its a bewilderness out there!


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 Post subject: Re: Decisions, decisions
PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 12:12 am 
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add this to your tools:

radical acceptance:
I accept that there are things that I want from my brother that he cannot give me.


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