Tears – Part Two

tears-2

 

Having ascertained that the commission of tears arising from physical and/or emotional hurt resulted in a sympathetic reaction from certain people, I committed this to memory. I have rarely encountered much physical pain, enjoying good health and my profession being one where one is at most at risk of a paper cut rather than an errant chainsaw, collapsing ceiling or chemical ingestion. The early conditioning that I have been subjected to, as I know understand, appears to have resulted in me being impervious to many emotional injuries that others suffer from. Even the horrendous sensations which arise from my wounding as a consequence of criticism does not cause the tears to fall. Instead, I must focus on repairing the wound through retreat or the instigation of fury in order to gather fuel. The attention this requires means that I do not suffer the immediate reaction of becoming upset. I must feign upset in order to attract the required sympathy and in doing so I use that issued sympathy in order to bring about the control I require over the subject.

My tuition in the art and use of crying later embraced a different catalyst and one which has served to drive me ever onwards and upwards. I have many gifts and of those the one that was cherished most by my father was my academic ability. As I have mentioned beforehand, he was a very intelligent man, well-read and with an interest in the world at large, something which be bestowed on all his offspring. This served him well in both his careers of commerce and then academia. His was the steady hand at the tiller of our academic progress and he sought to steer a path through the choppy waters of my mother’s ambitions for us, our own desires and what he felt would serve us best. The three, as might you expect, were not always compatible.

I excelled at school which naturally resulted in my progression to sixth form college and I was always destined for university. Naturally it was to the most prestigious that I was directed towards and I achieved admission whereupon in such a fertile environment I began to flex my tendrils as I embraced my dark art, but that is a tale for another time. Alongside this I flourished at my chosen discipline and eventually I graduated with a double first. It was this achievement which Dr E honed in on in one of our discussions.

“So a double first, quite the achievement,” he remarked. I nodded. He was not wrong.

“What did your parents think about it?” he asked.

“My friends once they had their results went racing away to telephone their parents to let them know the outcome. I didn’t.”

“Why?”

“It had already been arranged that I was meeting my parents for dinner that evening and I would tell them my degree result once we ordered.”

“What did you think of that arrangement? Weren’t you keen to tell your parents sooner of your success?”

“I suppose so but I knew there was little point. Even if I had tried to telephone them, nobody would have answered. My mother would have deliberately absented the house so I could not reach them so as to avoid spoiling the anticipation at dinner.”

“So this arrangement was at your mother’s behest?”

“Of course. Who else? If I achieved the expected outcome the evening would pass pleasantly, if I did not, I would be subjected to a lengthy cross-examination unable to avoid it by putting the telephone down.”

“I see. It was fortuitous then that you achieved such an excellent result.”

“Fortune had nothing to do with it. This dinner was placed in the diary as soon as my mother knew when the examination results would be posted. It was a further incentive for me to achieve what was expected of me.”

Dr E nodded and made a note.

“How did the meal progress then? How did they react to news of your achievement?”

“Once our orders had been placed and the waiter walked away, my mother turned to me and asked ‘Well?’ I responded with, ‘I obtained a double first’ and she answered by saying, ‘As expected. I will make the call,’ and she left the table to telephone the other family members to let them know, probably her brother first of all out of them all.”

“No mention of well done or congratulations?” asked Dr E.

I shook my head.

“And your father?” he asked.

“My father waited until my mother was out of earshot and he reached across and placed his hand on my arm and said, “Well done HG, very well done, that is a fantastic outcome. I know just how hard you have had to work for that result. It is a magnificent result, truly outstanding. I am so very proud of you son, very proud indeed,” and then as he said the word proud his voice cracked and I looked up into his eyes and I could see that he was crying. I had never seen my father cry before. Ever. I had seen him concerned, downcast, worried and so much more, but never the tears. His face was fixed with a huge smile and he tried to speak again but he was overcome with pride. Pride for me. Just me. I had not seen anything like it.”

“How did you feel about him showing such pride for you?”

“I was taken aback but then I felt this surge through me and it felt amazing. It was visceral and ever so powerful as I continued to look at him, the tears filling his eyes and he kept nodding. His hand patted my arm, I can still picture it now. He wasn’t able to speak but the look on his face and that nodding told me that somehow he felt that the job was done, the mission had been accomplished and he was proud of me for doing so. I have never forgotten that moment.”

“Why?” asked Dr E.

“Because the way I felt when I saw my father cry tears of pride at my achievement made me want to see that again. The sense of power that he imbued in me, his praise, his pride, his adoration of my achievement was so edifying that he made me strive even harder. Oh, my mother thinks she is the driving force behind my success and it would be wrong to say she has not been. She has been a huge influence but from that point onwards, my postgraduate achievement, my securing employment and advancement through the hierarchy to where I am now and also in terms of what the future may bring has been driven by my father. I wanted to feel that power again and for that to happen I wanted to see those tears of pride again. So I worked damn hard. I never knew that pride would make someone cry. I never knew that someone’s proud tears would make me feel so powerful.”

“I see. Did you see those tears of pride again from your father?”

I felt the first flicker of the ignition of my fury at this question.

“No. Once again something special to me was taken from me.”

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19 thoughts on “Tears – Part Two”

  1. This is beautiful, thank you to all who highlighted the article. In true empath style it caused my heart to ache a little.
    Certain positive memories can not be removed, they are etched in the soul for a reason.
    It may not have happened again to this meaning, but that does not negate the first experience of observing this pride. It was clearly his Automatic, genuine, emotional, authentic reaction to the love and pride he felt for his son.
    I know this to be true because I feel this love and pride when I look at my children, sometimes it catches you out, they do or say something. The emotion washes over.
    I hope you hold on to this memory HG, and do not let it get distorted over time. In my humble opinion and based on what you have written here, it was real love.

  2. Im sure your Fathers behaviour has been dissected eight ways to Sunday but here’s my go at it (until your future publications change my view). Your Mother hated weakness, you were raised not to emulate or tolerate it. Your Father was embarassed at displaying what he knew you and your Mother considered to be weakness but despite that (in her absence) let it show in that moment. You didn’t say what your response was to him or if your Mother returned while he was emotional. Whatever happened there would likely determine the reason he never did again. He was overwhelmed with pride in that moment as he most likely always was for you, but did not show you because you were now a man and he did not want you to consider him weak. Most men don’t like to show emotion much less one whos married to a woman who would cut off his balls if he dared. I think he dared greatly in that moment and admire him for it. Of course the way you’re wired only allows you to see that you got only one moment, wanted others, and were denied. I am wired to see that I wanted only one and got none. Narc 1. Empath 0 So yes, you even win in what you consider a loss proving once again your superiority.

    1. Sad that dad could not speak up at the table until the mom left. Still, in spite of timing, dad’s words were good.

  3. I thoroughly agree with you. Even the highly rated Dr. Phil show does this. I have been a great fan of his (still am), but lately when I’ve watched some of his shows, I think to myself, how in the hell do you (Dr. Phil) think this situation (the one being aired) is going to get any better. It’s very clear to me, a lot of the time, who the Narc is in the storyline, (as I’m sure it’s clear to Dr. Phil as well), yet he still provides hope to the other person being abused, instead of telling them to run the other direction. I get it’s a television show and the ratings are crucial to his survival on tv, but some of those people really need to hear the truth, which sometimes, I wonder if Dr. Phil truly knows what your kind do. I hope you don’t mind, but it bothered me so much one day that I finally emailed the show twice, asking them to look at your website. Who knows, my request may never go anywhere, but it was worth it for me to try. I think there are way too many people in this world completely asleep and we all need to wake up. Thank you, again, for waking me up!

    1. It is an interesting question BH, does he know and therefore does not care so long as the ratings are up – in which case what does that say about him? Or does he just not know and falls into the trap of euphemising the problem as “commitment phobe” or “not into you” etc? Thank you for sending the e-mail though and I guess you will need to keep plugging away.

  4. HG, I’m a true believer that we all go through trials for a reason. I hope you know that, to me, you’re reason is for exactly what you’re doing for us (the Empaths, Super Empaths and Co-dependents) each and every day. Just today, I realized the reason I had to go through the experience I did for nearly 5 years with the ex-MN. My son (a Super Empath like myself) is going through an abusive relationship with his girlfriend, who is pregnant with my grand daughter. I’ve heard many stories of how she’s treated him (he’s definitely in the devaluation stage), but have never witnessed it fully for myself because she’s really good at putting on the “sweet girl” mask whenever she’s around me. After my son told me today that he was not allowed to touch his new baby’s things in the baby room (he was just cleaning up), I realized that we’re dealing with a narcissist. HG, I would not have known any of the traits to look for had it not been for you! I have to honestly say (as weird as this sounds), I’m thankful I went through the hell I did, if it meant finding you and discovering what it was I needed to know so that I could teach and protect my son from a life of hell with this girl. The greatest part of all is that today, when I explained the seriousness of the situation he’s in, he got it; and now I feel like we can move forward in helping to protect him and my grand daughter.

    HG, I’ve thanked you many times over the last few months, but I sincerely hope you know how many lives you’re touching in such a good and amazing way. I truly hope that one day all of this hard and incredible work you’re doing now pays off for you in a major way. I honestly don’t see how it can’t, you’re doing such an incredible thing.

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!

    1. You are welcome BH. I have little doubt that there are parents all around the world who have been bewildered by the adult offspring’s tales of abuse/misery/woe at the hands of someone who seems otherwise so pleasant and where the offspring is believed, those parents struggle to reconcile the behaviours with what they signify. Many well-intentioned people will try and suggest the couple stick at it and work through their problems, unaware of how futile this is. Thank you for your kind words.

  5. A very moving post…

    How did a very intelligent man, and gentle soul like your father end up with a monster like your ‘mother’? What on earth did he see in her? And why did he stay once he knew what she was and had children with such a cold woman?!

    I think he cried because he loved you, and did not know how to say it. Your academic success was the opportunity which allowed him to express his love for you. Your reaction, the surge that grips your entire body and lifts you up, what you describe as power, may have been the realisation that you have been loved all along… it is only human to want to see that in others, and feel it again…

  6. Would your mother have unleashed her fury at your dad if she saw him congratulating you and letting you know how proud he was of you?

    You have much to be proud of HG.

  7. This is one of those posts of yours that has always moved me deeply. I deeply know that fire inside to achieve for love. It’s a very powerful feeling, to reach another high….and knowing you will have to continue jumping higher and higher for the same high. And the motivation behind it for conditional love. I know this well. It is partially where you addiction to fuel was born, no? I know it was for me. As I have said in the past, I have had to wean myself off that fuel, as acodependant. Hard and life long…and possible HG. You can be loved for “you”…long journey. I have that wish for you, to know true self love. It’s hard, when it’s foreign and like an unknown language…I hope you get that Rosetta Stone…

  8. COMPLETELY captivating I feel your written expressions are so powerful you touch the core of my soul so deeply I’m overwhelmed by emotions I have not experienced in real life. IM AT A LOSS FOR WORDS Bless YOU

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