Love always has a family story (pt2)

by Craig on November 15, 2011

On Friday I began leaking family secrets and dynamics. Yesterday was for thank you’s to God – and today – more leaking.

This has all been secret. In a dysfunctional family, details are kept within the walls. There was a ton of love flowing all around the one in the middle – the angry one – and little flowing from him. You would think the family would revolve around the mom who loved spectacularly well – but no – dysfunction always revolves around the most dysfunctional.

A little review of the professionally drawn diagrams I had made up specifically for this post.

The professionally drawn diagram at the top of this post:
•    single mom, two happy kids
•    strongest mother bonds between her and her children
•    a loving bond between brothers
•    a loving bond between my mother and her sibs
•    The red squiggly lines lead to the sailor who fathered the two boys and then disappeared.

Oh, and you might need a guide for all the lines…

here, have this one…

In this next professionally drawn diagram the new father enters – and the sailor becomes less than memory.

•    the mom has a whole new set of worries
•    the younger son on the right is being beaten whenever the abusive father has a need to release his demons.
•    the boys now have a strained relationship, the older one trickling physical abuse down
•    the loving bonds between mother and sons remain unbreakable.

Now there’s a change.

•    twin brothers are born.
•    the beatings on the son on the right have, for the most part stopped – though the threat remains – and the psychological and verbal abuse continues – and the damage has been done.
•    there are weak parental bonds between the dysfunctional middle and the original two sons – he’s got strong and non abusive bonds with his twin sons.
•    although they were never abused, the twins observed the physical and psychological abuse – and it would eventually affect them too.
•    the bond between twins – extra strong

And I’m going somewhere with this.
It’s all leading up to a phone call…
between the baby sister (not yet depicted in the professionally drawn diagrams) and me.
This phone call fell with the weight of a redwood on an ant.


time passes…

as the new professionally drawn diagram represents.

•    the mom has been emotionally torn since the marriage.
•    the older brother leaves the family circle and joins the Coast Guard. He won’t make it back into the circle for a long time.
•    A note: before the angry face in the center, the original brothers had a very loving relationship – after the introduction of the one in the center the older one became harder – the younger (me) developed a soft heart – and a whole bunch of coping mechanisms – and the relationship between them was strained and would only become more so.
•    the unbroken mother’s bond still stands strong
•    loving bonds between the original brothers and the twins (although with the older one leaving – those bonds would weaken)

Next comes this…

The baby girl.


please come back.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Ruthiey November 15, 2011 at 12:18 pm

I’ll come back. I admire your vulnerability.


Craig November 15, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Ruthiey – thank you. I think I know what people mean when they say stuff like this is hard to write – and then post – for some reason it feels almost…embarrassing. Wonder why that is? Anyway, thank you my friend – and God bless you.


Katie November 15, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Thank you for being vulnerable. Thank you for sharing. I shared my story last week in person with a group. It was so hard but I managed even though I wanted to cry during it, I did not, wishing I had because the tears have been stuffed for so long. I came home and told my husband that I had shared and how I felt like I need to cry but the tears weren’t there. His response made me feel like shutting down and stuffing the feelings so I did.


Craig November 15, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Katie, having read your story, I know people cried – but I’m ok that you didn’t – not crying doesn’t mean not feeling. And I’m sorry you got the response at home you did – really. First of all – we men really need to learn how to deal with feelings better – second – well, there is no second – just that – and sorry. I get it though – God bless you my friend.


Katie November 17, 2011 at 1:11 pm

“not crying doesn’t mean not feeling.” Oh you are so right, thank you for that thought and gift.


Craig November 17, 2011 at 3:20 pm


A. November 17, 2011 at 7:13 am

Katie, I hurt for you when I read this. It is such a gift when the one we share with can demonstrate understanding and empathy. I wish you could have had such a listener when you needed it. I hope the time and place comes when you can have those tears in a safe and loving place.



Katie November 17, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Thank you. I do have a safe place to cry, in worship so often is where I am safe and I encounter God and cry. And the group I shared with were so understanding, just not my husband.


Michelle November 16, 2011 at 4:01 am

…waiting to hear more…..I’ve been here, just quiet, a lot happening and someone summed it up perfectly today – “you’ve over-extended” – so am looking forward to a weekend away with hubby in a couple of weeks to regenerate and reconnect, and then maybe will have some words, but rest assured, praying has been happening :-)


Craig November 16, 2011 at 11:48 am

Michelle, I understand “overextended” – and I hope that weekend away with your hubby will be perfect for regenerating and reconnecting. Thank you for letting me know that you’ve been here – and thank you for praying – it’s a pretty critical time for the rest of my life – this time right now – and I need a lot of prayer. And I need you to read too! ツ but more than anything I need to want the will of God more than I want my own – and pray for it – and find peace in whatever may come. God bless you my friend – take care. (and keep reading too – did I make that point clear? ツ)


Lisa Maria November 16, 2011 at 5:02 am

Praying for you as you ‘purge’ Craig. You’ve got a whole lot of people supporting you in prayer. I’m dying of suspense so I’ll be back (I’m one of those who read the book cover to cover in one sitting if I can)


Craig November 16, 2011 at 11:44 am

I wonder if this IS purging – I’ve understood it for a while now – I’ve not shared it with very many people – and now I’m blabbing it on the interwebs – but purging I think means to get rid of – it has destroyed much of me – and Our Lord has rebuilt so much of that – he’s had a lot of work to do – and I’ve been stubborn – but all of this – all the family dynamics – all of the diagrams – are so you can understand why a simple statement from my sister – that my brother was running over to help her ASAP – a simple statement like that – cut to my core. All of this is necessary for that – and if some stuff gets purged – well I guess that’s good too. Thank you for being so kind. Thank you. And God bless and keep you.


A. November 16, 2011 at 12:36 pm

Craig, there is a reason, or multiple reasons for the sharing you are doing here…and we will never know them all, and they are probably unique to each reader and even unique for you. Praying for you in this sharing. And yes, thanks, thanks for this.


Craig November 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm

A, you’re right, I’m always forgetting about what HE’S doing. I heart how you remind me of stuff.


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