50 Shades of Deprivation

I came across an article that enlightened me to the subject of “Acts of Deprivation”. In summary, we have this need to re-enact our childhood traumas that left us feeling abandoned. We want to go through them again because we believe that this time round, we can fix that feeling and feel whole again. This makes us attracted to people with the characteristics our caretakers had that made us feel abandoned. Hence, we all fall in love with our bad boys/girls. Below is a link describing Acts of Deprivation. There are also exercises you can do to identify this in your own life. Interesting stuff!

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/finding-love/201104/recognizing-your-attractions-deprivation

This is the sort of thing that manipulators love to use. All you need to do is identify the acts of deprivation in a victim and boom, you can get them to do all sorts of things for you. To any manipulative people that are reading this – whatever you have to manipulate to get is not yours to take, you will have to work very hard to keep manipulating to keep it. It’s not worth it! 

From a writing perspective, this is the stuff to use for characters in a story. Let’s take 50 Shades of Grey; I can now understand why so many women were literally “wetting their panties” reading this book. A man with the looks she adores in a powerful position; he represents a twisted father figure very well! He spanks her, controls her, tells her when/what to eat, when to sleep, how to look after herself, buys her toys and even overly intervenes in her daily life to tell her what to do as if she can’t look after herself. Most fathers can’t be perfect all the time – they can’t always be there for a child and in return the child feels she can’t quite get what she needs from him. Christian Grey is not perfect! Add a lot of sex everywhere that you didn’t think was pleasurable and is suddenly pleasurable; the sex itself is also an act of deprivation. It’s a lot of scenarios that under normal circumstances would make you feel degraded – but all of a sudden, you read this and you realise it turns you on! (Like when that boy says something degrading to you, you suddenly want him more).  Spoiler Alert – but apparently the 50 shades of grey books go through 3 books of him being out of her reach leaving her deprived until the end where Mrs Lead Character whose name I can’t even remember manages to “fix” all their/his issues and she is finally no longer deprived. So in reading the books, most woman’s childhood issues are recreated in some twisted way, then fixed in the end. We all have our happy ending 😉

On a more positive note. Acts of Deprivation has an opposite force called Acts of Inspiration, to be attracted people that accept us for who we are but whose characteristics inspire us to something greater! The challenge here is to get around that mentality that we don’t need to win someone’s care but just accept it, especially when we are hard wired to believe that nothing that isn’t worked for is worth having. My answer to that; we still need to work to fight that side of ourselves that loves to be deprived, and at least this time we will grow and have a better chance at a happy ending.

That’s more that’s more than enough inspiration from me, I would like to go brood on more deprived characters…

#DigiWriMo , #Day20

Characters that haunt me – Female Self Image

The character in my mind that haunts me most, is the image women create for themselves, she is Self Image. If she were to materialise from my mind, this is what she would say.

It would be hard to place the exact date I came into existence, I would guess I’m roughly 21. I have stayed this age for years. I don’t remember the first few years of my life or even the powers that created me. I like to think I was conceived around the time Madame was 3 years old. You will think I’m a woman when you meet me; I am probably a woman but I can be anything, I can be a man sometimes, I’m not the expert on what it is to be a man, but to be a man I basically take on some characteristics that Madame believes are masculine. She usually panics when I do this! It’s very important to her that I am a woman, feminine and perfect.

Madame has accepted me as I am on a few occasions but mostly I’m always being compared to some crazy perfect creature, who is ever changing and a figment of her imagination. I feel abused and hurt by this constant comparison! I used to take all that nonsense but now I play tricks to get my revenge. I wait for incidents that cause Madame to feel fragile then change the way I look. It scares her and she feels terrible. She also blames those incidents for my changes which is quite funny, but then she punishes me. That manipulative Madame knows that she is the sole reason I live so she punishes me by punishing herself. She thinks that by being cruel to herself I will become perfect. Not so! Oh I used to try, but I’m over that now. When she is kind to me, I reward her by being someone that will makes her happy. When she is cruel to me, I make small changes to myself that will make her believe that I will turn into her worst nightmare, Madame knows I’m the key to her being happy with herself – if I turn into her worst nightmare, she will never be able to be happy with herself.

Madame does not like interacting with the world; she uses me to interact with everyone else. She likes to stay locked away in that state of nothingness where she feels safe, she makes me give the illusion to everyone that I am her and I have to do everything for her. Now that I have told you this, you can understand why it’s so important to her that I am perfect – she wants to be seen as perfect too. Madame can be a cold unfeeling person, then there are those days, even months when she is besotted with me. It’s always those times when parts of me have come close to what she would like me to be. It’s intoxicating to be idolised, it worries me though; she idolises me so much that I feel like a god. To think you are a god is not healthy! I’m in charge of interacting with everyone – when I’m feeling like a god, I probably don’t treat people that humanly. Being a god makes me feel as if I’m so much better than them, this would cause me to act in a way that is not fitting. Madame doesn’t think how I feel when someone decides it’s time to bring me down to being a mere mortal, that is until she realises her idol is substandard. Then the phase passes and I’m back to being improved upon!

When I’m interacting with others, Madame doesn’t have access to try and control me as much. I can just go through the motions and send all the information I receive back to her. She loves new information so she is mostly well behaved during these periods. I say mostly because there are those times when others give her feedback that I’m slipping up, she gets into such a state and I’m left on my own to pretend everything is alright in case I make her even madder.

I am very tired these days, so much time is spent on trying to keep Madame happy. I thought she just wanted me to impress everyone else but it’s even worse when we are alone. She thinks all this alone time is the perfect time to coax me into being something better. I don’t mind improvement, we all need it, but she always wants instant change. She is not realistic! Teach someone how to ride a bike in a slow caring manner and it’s a lovely bonding process. Show someone a picture of a bike and say, “That should be you! Be that!” The person will fall and hurt themselves. In this instance Madame would probably get even angrier because the picture she pointed at hasn’t emerged. Absolute madness! I long for the day we can have a less turbulent relationship. I don’t want to be idolised, I want to be loved and accepted with all my flaws.

#digiwrimo , #day19

The Playground

Park

Little J is feeling nervous, a little shy, she tries to hide behind her father. Her messy pig tails drop over her shoulders. She peaks around her father. He laughs “You’re a big girl now, you can go say hello.” She replies “You can go for me”. He refuses, “You can do it by yourself.” She decides to bury her shyness; she is curious to meet Big J. She looks down at her white lacy vest and skirt. It’s her favourite outfit, it makes her feel pure. She puts on a look of determination and starts walking cautiously toward the playground. She looks at all the green grass and feels happy. Playgrounds were a treat, there was so much to do. Hopefully she could get Big J to pull the see-saw down for her. She could also ask her to catch her at the bottom of the slide. Slides were scary, she sometimes got stuck at the top. One never knew what would happen at the bottom of a slide. It always felt better if there was someone to catch her at the bottom.

I adjust the scarf around my neck, it feels tangled. It’s my favourite wrinkled, black scarf. I can’t fix it, I can see little J in the distance. I have no idea how to deal with little people so I smile and walk, with a carefree appearance, over to her. I want to try and make both of us feel as at ease as possible. I have spent the large part of the morning playing out the future conversation in my head but still can’t decide how I should act or what would be important to say. If I was one of those overly emotional people, I would want to cry and just hold her, give her as much love and healing that I possibly could. I already know Little J would hate this. She only likes that kind of behaviour when she feels like a failure. She would probably like it if I took her awareness away from herself. I was finally facing her, “Should we have ice-creams and go sit on the swings?”

Little J is excited to be eating ice cream and playing on the swings. She could probably swing higher than Big J. Her father had told her that it was very important for her to talk to Big J; she had to think of something to tell her. She couldn’t think of anything, she just wanted to ask questions. Did she end up moving to England? Does she become an actress or a vet?

We sit on the swings eating ice-cream. I was hating the sugar, fake milk and the thought of how an animal had been tortured so that I could enjoy this ice-cream. Little J was appreciating the treat immensely. Both of us were wishing the ice cream would never end.  I knew there wasn’t much time. I break the silence, “Is there something you maybe want to tell me?”

“You’re bigger than I expected.”

I laughed. “That’s right, you do become less short over the years.”

“Do you end up moving to England?”

“The possibility is still there but no I haven’t lived there yet.”

Little J’s eyes sparkled, “Did you become an actress?”

“No.”

“A vet then?” she asks.

“No. Does that disappoint you?”

“Not really. Do we go on lots of adventures?”

I sighed, “Not enough of them, I’m always tired, but yes we do.”

“That’s funny, Daddy’s always tired too! Are the adventures like the ones in Famous Five? “

I laughed again, “I wouldn’t say so, no.”

There is a mission that needs to be accomplished and it’s not happening. We are both sitting on our own swing. I turn slightly to Little J and nudge her arm. Our swings are hardly moving. She is absorbed in the ice-cream.

I’m getting impatient, “Isn’t there something you need to tell me that you think I could have forgotten. Something that I need to know in life. I’m always confused if I’m doing the right thing or if I have forgotten who I am. There must be something you can think of to help me?”

Little me turns and looks up at me, she looks forlorn. “I can’t think of anything that I can tell you. You’re bigger than me, you should know more than me.” She forgets the ice-cream and looks sulky.

I feel guilty for pressing Little J. I have also failed at getting the information I wanted. I look up, the sky has turned from blue to grey and it’s covered in low-lying clouds. It looked as if it might rain. I’m tense. I change the subject, “Are you enjoying the ice-cream?” A chunk of ice-cream is about to drip off the cone. Little J uses her fingers to rescue the ice-cream into her mouth. She nods. The corner of her mouth turning up slightly. I can see she doesn’t really want to smile. She replies, “Mommy asks why I can’t always be good. I want to be good, it’s hard. Are you good now?”

I turn to her, “I try but it’s not easy. Remember how you told Mommy you can’t be an angel however hard you try? That’s how it is.”

The swing started to make me dizzy and the overdose on sugar wasn’t helping. I stood up and knelt in front of Little J’s swing. I tell her, “You have to accept that you can’t always be good. You are made of fire and ice, there are two sides to you. You need to embrace them both. You will keep feeling bad for being bad. That will hurt you. If you don’t want to see the bad in yourself, you won’t see it in other people. That can also hurt you.”

Little J gets up and takes my hand, it’s sticky from the ice-cream. “The swing is boring! I want to slide down the big slide. Will you catch me?”

I let her pull me to the slide but I don’t respond. We get to the slide and I climb up the slide behind her. I stand on the 3rd rung from the top of the slide. Little J is very slowly moving from a standing to seated position. I look around, I can see the cars and offices past the playground. The sun behind the scattered clouds create beautiful contrasts in the surrounding area. A slight breeze blows Little J’s hair. She is sitting at the top of the slide bracing herself to let go. She asks softly, “You aren’t going to catch me then? What if I fall?”

I take off my scarf and put it around her shoulders. “Even with no one to catch you, you will still slide.” I lean closer to her. Tears want to form in my eyes. “I love you very much. Both sides of you!”

The small little girl who was once me disappears. I reach my fingers reach toward my neck, my skin feels warm where the scarf was once was…

#DigiWriMo , Day15

Did you just write about me!??

I have read blogs where I cringe at some of the content that is written. It’s not so much the details in the blog, but who the details were about. It’s all good and well when the writer decides he (or she) is ready to open up and spill the beans for other people to read. The writer was ready for it. But a writer does not live alone on planet Pluto; he interacts with many people on a daily basis. Our lives are all intertwined.

I once read a blog written by someone I knew. As I started reading through it, I recognised one of the guys she was talking about. I felt terrible for him. He probably had no idea that some of his intimate actions were being spilled into the blogosphere for all the public to view. In this case it was an awkward sex story involving said guy. I immediately thought…has anyone written anything like this about me!!?? If some of the people I knew had to write about moments we have had together (no assumptions please!), I would be absolutely mortified! How horrible would it be if somewhere out there on the internet, secrets that I wasn’t ready to share, were being exposed for everyone to judge!

In our social circles, there are a lot of people have “big mouths”. You do something with one person, and their or your whole friend group probably knows a lot of the intimate/embarrassing details. It’s not great but it’s contained. On the internet? What if it went viral or ended up in one of those chain emails? I browsing the FML website and saw a girl write; “I’ve had the worst day, I just received a chain email showing pictures of fat girls falling. I saw my own unflattering picture!” Funny story, but it goes to show; internet content gets around.

How about a book? There are many published memoirs, biographies and autobiographies. I often wonder, how do all the other people in the book feel about their life being written about? The author has made peace with showing certain parts of his life and himself; how about everybody else? Freedom of expression for the author, but infringement of privacy for the other people! It’s like when you are a teenager and super shy about getting your first period, then your mother with whose come to terms with the facts of life thinks this is an absolutely normal topic to be discussing with people.  Not cool!

As a writer, you need to decide what your stance is on writing about other people. I will probably want to write fiction one day. A lot of the characters are going to be modelled on people I have met. Things I describe will be based on my life experiences. If those people read my book, how are they going to feel? I’ve would have made peace with what I show about my character to other people, but I would feel bad if I were to offend someone in what I write about them. I don’t think this is so bad in fiction – in my opinion a character would hardly every be 100% based on someone you know; only aspects of their personality.

Most people don’t mind if they were written about in a favourable light. Here are my comments on what I think about situations where people would feel upset:

  • Embarrassing moments: people should get over it! We are all human and do embarrassing things, don’t take yourself too seriously.
  • Intimate moments: I think you should either ask for permission before publishing, or the person needs to have done something cruel that needs to be exposed. There must be a strong purpose behind it that justifies it. E.g. – if a woman that was raped, goes through the details about what was said and done in their interactions, revealing intimate moments becomes justifiable.
  • Times a person behaved badly: I think a writer is justified in writing about this. It’s social punishment. It must be 100% true though! A writer could end up being sued for Defamation of Character if the facts were false.
  • Times a person behaved in a weird or crazy way: once again; permission needs to be obtained or a strong purpose to justify writing about it.

There is also that problem that all these situations are relative. What the writer sees as being bad, crazy or favourable could differ to what the person being written about sees.

The other way around it is writing so that no-one other than yourself and the people who already know the embarrassing/crazy/intimate fact would ever know who you are writing about. This could get tricky too; the writer better be very skillful in leaving out any details. Unfortunately, this could result in a less authentic or boring story.

#DigiWriMo , #Day14

Writing feedback and reflections

Someone was kind enough to critically go through my writing and give me honest feedback.

This my “brain storm” of thoughts and actions from the feedback (feedback is at the bottom).

I have done the Myers Brigs test – I am very much N – a big picture person. I can see this in my writing, I like playing with concepts but struggle with the detail around them. I need to start focusing on the details. Big picture thinking is great, though once I have my first draft, I need to start focusing on details. This is difficult, I love new concepts, ideas and the beginning of anything. Dotting my eyes and crossing my T’s not so much my thing. I need to take the sour with the sweet! I have to work on “molding” the content after the first draft; this includes grammar, words chosen, punctuation and argument structure!

In my research of big picture detail thinking; I came across the topic of organic writing. Organic writing is about writing from “the heart”. You don’t decide beforehand what the outcome is, the writing process is an exploration for you and the characters and that’s how the plot develops. I can already tell it’s my style of writing. I know my current favourite author is also an organic writer (Murakami). I can’t for the life of me find it, but he said something along the lines of: “ I don’t really know the story myself till I finish the book… I take a journey myself through writing.” Below are links to descriptions of organic writers:

http://blog.gailgauthier.com/2013/09/the-weekend-writer-organic-writers-and.html

http://writetodone.com/solved-the-outlining-vs-organic-writing-debate/

Organic writer, so what does that mean for me? That means there is even more need for me to organise my thoughts. I need to have an overall structure (which can always be changed later) or else I will end up just randomly posting and not even following my own trail of thought.

What am I hoping to achieve through writing?

What I want for myself from the blog:

  • Become a better writer / Expression/ Art
  • Figuring out how my mind works (psychology)
  • Figuring out how my body works (nutrition, exercise)
  • Figuring out how the world works (consumerism, social expectations, animal cruelty)

What I want other people to get from my blog:

  • Help someone else improve their writing (my posts can show the process I went through in learning how to write). Some writers might identify with my way of expression [Writing improvement]
  • Help people figure out how their mind works. We are all different but parts of us are the same. [Mental improvement]
  • Help people figure out how their body works.  [Physical improvement]
  • Help educate others on how the world works [World improvement]

For me to achieve above, I need to work on communicating more effectively in my writing, the writing needs to be more structured and geared to help the audience understand what I’m trying to communicate.

Structure I could follow when writing: SCQUARE: Setting, Content, Question, Understanding, Answer , Rephrase , Ethical considerations

Structure I could add to the blog site: Can add another tab that links everything together. Categories can be:

Improvement of:

  • Writing
  • Mind
  • Body
  • World

Below is the feedback I got:

Basically, my ideas are good but below are the problems in communicating those ideas:

-Look at overall structure: spacing and fonts not uniform (Writing structure)

-Blog page is not user friendly: hard to find posts (Page structure)

-Over use of certain works: A lot, also , but etc

-I’m using verbal communication in writing instead of written communication. Written communication should be a lot more descriptive as I’m not there in person to use body language to communicate – not can I fell in the gaps when the person needs more information

-Incorrect and over use of dashes, brackets and ellipses

-Spelling!

-Argument structure needs working on – Set the scene, identify content, identify what I’m setting out to solve etc.

-Focus on bigger picture but lack in details –sometimes I bring in a new concept, or starting to talk about something but don’t bother to elaborate. Lacking in descriptions. 

#DigiWriMo , #Day13