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Brandy

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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 319 total)
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  • #351184

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Serife,

    I agree that many fear the consequences of non-conformity. What happened at your place of work is typical in my experience. You did the right thing. Now if I had observed that situation myself I would walk away thinking that you, Serife, aren’t afraid to do the right thing and I’d want to gravitate toward you! I really would.

    I know what you’re experiencing with your friends is frustrating and hurtful. I wonder if others in your group feel it too — I’ll bet they do. Friend groups are hard sometimes. I think a lot of us have felt exactly the way you do.

    B

    #351022

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Serife,

    I need to do a better job at proofreading my posts before submitting them. I just now re-read what I had written earlier and it doesn’t read how I wish it did. While I do believe that many people are looking to elevate their status through their relationships, I also believe that many others are not and that those are the friends to find.

    You say “In my personal life someone could be outgoing, athletic or intelligent and people would still gravitate to other people.” It could be that those particular people don’t value the outgoing, athletic, and intelligent qualities as much as they do other qualities. When I was your age most of my peers seemed drawn toward those who were having the most fun, you know, those organizing parties on the weekends, buying groups of tickets to live concerts, etc. And to be totally honest they were usually the most attractive and the most popular in my high school.

    But not all friendships start this way. You’ll know it when it happens, when you meet someone you connect with who is excited to get to know you and be your friend just because of the person you are. Connections like this don’t happen every day. That’s what makes them special.

    You ask “do u think this need for approval by people with higher status comes from the need to feel ‘protected’ or to conform to social standards?” I’d say the latter. I think people see social status as something that greatly affects their quality of life. By conforming to social standards they are essentially avoiding negative responses from the people they’re trying to align themselves with. What do you think?

    B

    #350890

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Serife,

    Status, or where a person is in relation to his/her peers, is important to many people so they gravitate toward those who they believe will elevate their status. Good-looking, strong, independent, out-going, athletic, successful, intelligent, funny, popular people are generally perceived as having higher status than unattractive, weak, needy, introverted, unathletic, unsuccessful, less intelligent, serious, loner-types, and being associated with the higher status group is generally considered more advantageous. Maybe it goes back to  the ‘survival of the fittest’ concept; by aligning ourselves with the “fittest” we increase our own chances of survival. So people post photos on social media to make themselves appear to have high status, and they brag about their kids’ accomplishments, and even their own, all in an attempt to attract others to themselves. When you’re caught up in it it can be difficult to make sense of, but once you see it for what it is it’s quite eye-opening! As you enter different phases in your life it’s nice to know what motivates people.

    B

    #350716

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Felix,

    Along with Anita’s suggestions above I suggest you give your mind a break by meditating for 20 minutes three times a day, every single day. Give it a try and stick to it no matter what for at least a couple months. See what happens.

    B

    #348610

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Eve,

    The Dalai Lama teaches that the ultimate source of happiness is our mental attitude. I’m not a Buddist and I know very little about the Dalai Lama but what he’s saying makes sense to me. I realize that given your sadness and disappointment it’s pretty much impossible to have any other attitude than the one you currently have but maybe the change starts with self-forgiveness. You’re judging yourself as a bad person who deserves her suffering but I don’t see you that way. Millions of women find themselves in relationships with unhappily married men who intend to leave their wives but never do for all kinds of reasons including financial. Your situation isn’t unique. For 10 years you stuck by this man, believed him, loved him, but you’ve ultimately come to the painful decision to cut your losses, to step out of a situation that is no longer working for you. Yay, Eve! Bravo to you! You’re now back on track and worthy of happiness. Even people who make mistakes are worthy of peace, joy, and love because guess what: everyone makes mistakes.

    It all begins with believing that you are worthy of a life free of all this damn suffering. The past is gone. Let it go. Your sweet kids who love you very much have their awesome mom back — today is a great day!

    B

    #346770

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi anita,

    Wanted to let you know that I’m still reading this thread and finding it very useful. I’ve done my own research on all the topics you’re discussing here and it feels good to read it back from someone in her own words who did her own research using her own sources. I think you and I are on the same page.

    My grandparents were very young adults during the Spanish flu pandemic and I find myself wishing I had asked them about it before they passed. I remember the concerned looks on my grandmother’s face whenever anyone in my family would get a common head cold. She seemed so overly concerned to me. Makes more sense to me now.

    B

    #345370

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi anita,

    Maybe it’s best for you and anyone else who is following this thread to research the topic of COVID-19 mutation rate on their own instead of me posting from various publications. Then we can discuss our own conclusions.

    From what I’ve read, I think it’s possible that those who are shown to have COVID-19 antibodies have a good chance of not being infected (or re-infected which may be the case for some) by the virus this season. But I understand that the info is fluid and may be different tomorrow.

    B

    #345356

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi anita,

    I don’t understand why my earlier post today is awaiting moderation. It may be because I copied and pasted from two recent online newspaper articles (Washington Post and NY Magazine) and of course gave credit to those publications and enclosed what was copied inside quotation marks and within italics, but my paste operation may have triggered the required modification anyway?

    There are recent reports that scientists are finding that COVID-19 does not mutate quickly at all and may respond to only one vaccine (as opposed to the influenza vaccine which changes each year). Johns Hopkins University is one source of this information.

    B

    #345254

    Brandy
    Participant

    Sounds good, anita. Also, I was thinking, perhaps the general public needs both tests: 1) the standard test to prove that at this moment in time they are not infected (so they can’t unknowingly infect someone else including high-risk people), and 2) the antibody test to prove that they have the antibodies needed to fight off the virus in the event that they come into contact with someone who is infected. If they pass both tests then they should be good to go! Does that make sense?

    #345244

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi anita,

    I watch the news and the coronavirus “curves” that we’re all trying to flatten but I think none of us really knows what’s happening and that we won’t until the general public takes the COVID-19 antibody tests. The antibody test will tell us if the virus has ever entered our bodies, as opposed to the COVID-19 standard test which measures if the actual virus is present in our bodies at any particular moment in time. The antibody test makes more sense to me because it will reveal if the virus has already entered the bodies of many more people than we think, thus lowering the mortality rate of this virus.

    It’s believed that the first cases of COVID-19 were seen on Nov. 17, 2019 in Wuhan, China yet daily flights continued from China to the US from Nov 17, 2019 through Jan 31, 2020 (that’s 2.5 months) before the travel ban began (I’m not placing blame on anyone; just stating facts). That’s a lot of flights and a lot of people traveling from China to the US! It’s believed that the first COVID-19 case in the US occurred when a Washington state man in his 30’s returned home on Jan 15, 2020 from Wuhan and sought medical treatment when he started to experience pneumonia-type symptoms. But knowing what we know about how highly contagious this virus is, isn’t it likely that others who were infected but perhaps had milder symptoms were on some of those many flights to the US from China before the travel ban began? In other words, isn’t it likely that many more Americans were already infected but didn’t know it before the sick WA state man arrived? It may be that this WA man was the first person in the US who experienced serious COVID-19 symptoms, not the first person in the US with COVID-19.

    This is important because it tells us 1) how dangerous this virus is and 2) who should be back at work helping to stimulate the economy. People may say “People are dying! Of course it’s dangerous!”, but I’d like to know how the virus relates to common influenza which kills tens of thousands in the US each year. In mid-January I myself experienced a dry cough and mild shortness of breath that I attributed to just some random virus that I picked up during the cold/flu season, which indeed it may have been, but I wonder if a COVID-19 antibody test would show otherwise. My symptoms started exactly two months after the first COVID-19 cases were discovered in Wuhan and daily flights were continuing out of China to the US. If I have the antibodies (and I have fully recovered btw) then shouldn’t I be back at work helping the economy? And shouldn’t everyone else who has the antibodies be doing the same, and eating out at restaurants, and out purchasing from retailers that are closed because of this crisis?

    I’m aware that there’s concern about re-infection, that some people may be getting the virus again after they’ve “healed” from it, but I think we need to take that off the table for now because what I’ve read is that these folks may have never truly healed the first time after all, and that more testing is needed to know for sure.

    B

    #344474

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi anita!

    I appreciate this thread very much. I find myself doing what you are doing, self-educating to make sense of what’s happening. It’s nice to be able to post our thoughts and feelings about this situation.

    You wrote in your 4th post that there were no new coronavirus cases and deaths in Italy today (Sat 3/21; it’s evening in Italy right now). I found this (posted by The Guardian about 1 hour ago): In the past 24 hours the coronavirus death toll in Lombardy, Italy’s worst-affected region, has risen by more than by 546 to 3,095, according to official figures. 

    Not sure which report is accurate but I thought I’d put it out there anyway. My information may be wrong. Also, it’s not my intention to create fear; just searching for facts. Going to read your 5th post later today.

    Hope you’re doing well, anita.

    B

    (10:23am Saturday my time)

    #339876

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Tari,

    I enjoyed reading Andrew’s premarital questions and your answers. You come across as intelligent, sweet, caring, unselfish, wholesome, and funny. I don’t see anything at all in your answers that would explain his ghosting you. You obviously worked very hard and should be proud of what you wrote. Very thorough and well thought out. I’m impressed, Tari.

    As I was reading your answers I was thinking back to when I was your age (24) and dating the man who eventually became my husband and the father to our three kids. I was trying to picture how I would have felt if he had handed me those same questions after meeting him a few short weeks earlier and, I’ll be honest, those thoughts made me uncomfortable. I realize your and my cultures are very different and I’m sure that has a lot to do with my feelings, but if a man I did not know well expected written answers to those kinds of questions, I would have had to turn him down. I would have told him that the only way to find the real answers is by spending time with me.

    And while I’m being honest I guess I’ll add that it makes me sad to think of all the intelligent, ambitious, hard-working young women like you who are formulating a list of perfect answers so as to keep their suitors interested. So much pressure!

    I wish you could meet a nice guy and just be yourself and have fun together. No written questions/answers. Just learn about each other as you go. See how you both react in various situations. See how you both cope under stress. Have deep conversations about the things that matter. See if you are truly compatible. Give it at least one year (I’d suggest 2-3) before the premarital talk, then make an informed decision about your future together. Does that ever happen in your culture?

    B

    #339674

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Tari,

    This post is in response to your post before the last one. I’ll answer that one as soon as I have a little more time to read it.

    Can you please explain what you mean when you described that Andrew may have noticed things in my personality that he may not have liked? Is it my attitude? Was I mean?

    What I mean is growing up in an abusive, unhealthy environment likely left you with emotional scars. These may include low self-esteem, mood or personality disorders (anxiety, depression, etc.), guilt, shame, anger, inability to trust, dishonesty, drug or alcohol problems, risky behaviors, acting out, etc. No, nothing within your posts reveal that you have an attitude problem or that you’re mean.  A person’s emotional issues are often revealed in the way he/she reacts when under stress. During the time you were fleeing from your home after being physically assaulted by your brother, you were under extreme emotional stress and you were also communicating regularly with Andrew.

    I had a roommate in college and it took about 3 months of living with her for me to understand that something wasn’t right with her. I found her emotions to be very unpredictable, especially during final exams week. For example, our apartment was broken into while we were asleep one night and some of our things stolen. I was shocked and angry that someone had actually entered our apartment and could have harmed us, but she was completely unfazed/unengaged with what had happened. But then a much less serious event would really bother her, like when one of our other roommates forgot to empty the trash or wash a dish or something, she’d have us gather together and develop an action plan to rectify this situation. So her reactions to certain situations weren’t reasonable. Also, conversations with her felt somewhat inauthentic like she was hiding something. So after spending a long enough time with her I saw a  severely wounded young woman hiding underneath a girl-next-door façade (sweet, beautiful, smart, happy). Guys were immediately attracted to her but her relationships were always short-lived because she couldn’t hide her issues for long. I later learned that her family life was extremely unhappy and abusive…really terrible.

    Sometimes people pick up on others’ emotional issues and it changes things.

    Will get back to you regarding marriage questions/answers.

    B

    #339642

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Tari,

    Thanks for sharing more about your situation. Yes, I now see why you feel the way you do. Yours is a sad family situation, beyond dysfunctional. Whether you believe it or not, the years of abuse/lies/hostility within your family have changed you and will adversely affect your future. A lot of healing needs to happen for you so that you can recognize and correct the unhealthy tendencies you’ve picked up along the way; otherwise, you will carry the dysfunction forward to your future relationships.

    This is where member Anita’s compassionate expertise along with some quality psychotherapy of your own could really help you, but I’d like to share a few of my own thoughts first.

    We all have pressures in our lives which include demanding bosses, competitive coworkers, difficult teachers, betraying  friends, aggressive personalities, etc., so we all need a place that we can come home to where we feel safe and supported. Our homes should be our safe places where we can recharge our batteries to prepare for the next day. Your home is nothing like this.

    My husband and I have 3 kids who are young adults now. They are all learning about romantic relationships. We talk a lot about all kinds of situations that come up within relationships including the different values and expectations people have due to their cultures and upbringings, and also the different ways that males and females interpret things. My sons often ask me my opinions on girls. I am always honest with them about my feelings.

    If one of my sons came to me and told me that three weeks ago he met a nice girl who seemed to be a good girlfriend prospect but had recently fled her home because of physical abuse within her family, I would not want this situation for him and I would tell him so.

    So I don’t think Andrew has done anything wrong. I think he made the right decision to walk away from your dysfunctional, abusive family, and his decision may have had nothing at all to do with your being honest with him about your situation. It’s quite possible (even probable) that he picked up on certain aspects of your personality, certain things that you can’t hide, that you’ve developed during your abusive childhood, that he didn’t like. Anyone who grows up in the kind of environment that you did is going to have some chinks in her armor. You may be able to hide them for 3 weeks but eventually your issues will surface. You need to heal your issues.

    So, yes, I think Andrew made the right decision to walk away and now it’s time for you to walk away too. Time for you to protect yourself by cutting ties with your family.  They have damaged you, but you can heal.

    B

    #339520

    Brandy
    Participant

    Hi Tari,

    Okay so his “not her” statement, that doesn’t change how you feel about this? A “not her” would be all I’d need to close the book and move on. Will you be able to overlook those two words if he decides he’d like to try again with you?

    B

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 319 total)