A place for a

20.12.2015

Fare well, long dead uncle, the only dad I ever had

I have always lived with this quiet conviction that this world belong to the crazy monsters we call women and that men have no real place in it. I protested against it, but deep down, I felt it was futile and against the natural order. Their madness was destined for victory.

And real men? For whatever reason, they scared the hell out of me.

I avoided masculine men and when I looked into the mirror, I did not see a real man. Sure, I saw all the parts of a man. I saw a beard, a masculine face, all that. But I did not see masculinity. Could not see it. I saw a face that should look masculine to me and likely looked masculine to anybody else, but my sixth sense told me that it was a face totally and utterly devoid of masculinity. As if cursed.

Something inside me told me to call this blog Man Without Father a year ago. But I did have a father. Not the biological one, whom I never really emotionally cared about, yet that is something I did not understand. My real father was the man who took care of me until he died around my age of 2. I intellectually knew he had been there, but it meant nothing to me.

Until now.

A lost part

Some weeks ago, I read an article about a mother whose child had been taken away directly after the birth. The trauma of not being able to finish the process of birth through bonding with the child was so severe that she dissociated from her complete feminine side and forgot she had ever had a child. She stopped caring for her looks and drowned herself in deadening career work – which she convinced herself was what she wanted. She utterly and unvoluntarily forgot who she was for twenty years. And when she eventually met her boy, it came over her like a flood and she remembered that horrible pain and cried a river.

I read this back then and something in me went in intense resonance with that story. It hurt me a lot to read that story and by then, I already knew that our body has these intense responses only when there is something in our own life that is emotionally related.

Since I can think back, I was never really able to cry. And yet, I sometimes had these weird responses when something sad happened in a movie. When somebody died. It was like a sob that threatened to cloud my senses, but it was not possible for me to really express or feel it in any way. Like a hick up. It just came and went away automatically. The thought that came up in my mind was: Oh come on, it is not that bad, you whiny bitch. I actually laughed it away. I nonchalantly laughed at people dying. Funny life, is it not. I saw a video of some catastrophe with many dead people and then I saw the crying people all around – and I laughed. It was the only emotional reaction that made sense to me. I thought: Wow, you guys are really ridiculous. So somebody died. Get over it.

Denial

As said above, I was – for my whole past life – literally unable to see masculinity inside me. And when I saw it in others, I tried to unsee it, rationalize it away. I was not aware why.

But I had mixed feelings. On one hand, I was terrified of masculine men. On the other hand, I seeked their company as long as it was impersonal.

The only friends I felt comfortable around were those who had no traits of masculinity. That is how I chose them. They had to be weak and nice. I despised them, but it was the only thing I felt comfortable around.

Sometimes, I had this fantasy and strong desire of laying my head on a masculine man’s breast and sleeping. Seeing Mike Cernovich made me think of this. A few guys in the gym as well. I was questioning my sanity and felt intensely ashamed. Was I gay? But then, I felt that this was not the wish of a man, but that of a baby. It was a wish of extreme irrational love and affection and dependence, but not sexual. But who would believe me, right? Stop fooling yourself, Tom, you are gay.

And I seriously thought about whether I was, for a long time. It drove me mad. I had been going to the gym for 6 months and nakedly showered with other men. Not once did I feel any form of eroticism. Seeing and smelling a masculine man is the best boner killer I can think of; it bothers me so much that I do not even like watching porn too much for that reason – it contains another man.

And yet, maybe I was fooling myself, right? Maybe the suggestion of me being gay was making me angry because I secretly was, but just did not know it. Add to that that I was raped – which I also forgot – and felt this weird sensation in my ass all the time. The perfect confusion.

Interacting with men was weird for me in general. I had very strong and weird emotions about it. I could not accept affection from a man. I secretly wished for it and it felt great, but I immediately shut down. It was not even a choice, but the only response I could tolerate. I became cold and emotionless and thus I also alienated my martial arts trainer who seemed to like me and be proud of me in the beginning. I could not accept that from him, despite wanting it terribly.

Was I denying that I was gay? Weird shit.

An old memory

I am currently going through intense meditations in order to awaken Kundalini. Some asshats already told me I am going to hell for it. Fuck the morons.

The first part of those meditations basically consists of resolving Karma. That is, to go through all your memories of pain and accept them and come to peace with them. Scientology does something similar with their E-Meter. They call those memories engrams. But Scientology is a collectivistic nuthouse and they document all that shit, so fuck them too. I have found a good spiritual mentor to help me through this.

In my current state, I already open all my chakras and activate the Kundalini energy and my Chi. I guess it is not really important here, but somebody may be curious. Besides, the fact that all my chakras are open may be the reason why I was able to find this particularly important memory and feel it completely.

Here goes:

The memory begins with me being brought to my room and left alone. I am not sure why, but it is what it is.

I feel weird cold shivers on my back and remember an emotion that I had forgotten exists. Grief. And suddenly I am a two year old again.

It all comes back up. The death of the only father I ever had. A minute ago, I had been convinced that he would be there forever. And suddenly he is gone. Suddenly, in the blink of an eye, the only light in the dark of those mad females in my family goes off and I am left alone in hell. No more hope.

And I remember that I am a man. I remember that he was a man. I remember that we were two conspirators among those howling mad bitches. Sure, I was just 2 years old. But I knew that they were devils.

I remember that I am a boy. I remember how masculinity feels, after 24 years.

I remember losing my father, or the closest thing I ever had to him. Just like that, the darkness swallowed him, swallowed my only hope, the only thing I had desparely clung onto with all my love, as my mother was emotionally unavailable and psychic. And the other women in the family were not better.

I remember all the things I had to experience without his guidance, all the pain.

So what could I do? What could I do to endure the darkness and powerless deliverance to those cows but forget that I had ever cared? What could I do but forget the feeling of sadness, of love, of masculinity, of trust; only to feel like seeing an unreal ghost wherever a remnant of it found its way into my life.

What could I do but shut my self off from the outside world completely.

The loss of my uncle was also a loss of everything that reminded me of him. Everything that made me a man. To know of his death was to know of the death of my identity. In a very real sense, of me myself.

Aftermath

I can only guess how the whole thing unfolded after that. I would have despised living with those witches, but likewise known that I have no more way to be heard. So who knows. I became nice. Docile. Undemanding. Occasionally rageful, but then guilty. Guilty towards the witch who had, with time, convinced me that she really did love me and deserved my love. How would I know that it was a lie? I did not even really remember what love felt like.

Time will surely make me remember. But I know that my grandmother never failed to make me feel guilty for not being nice to my mother and her. She had lost her son. My mother had lost her brother. Yes, I was being very unfair to them, I saw that. It was not fair that I wanted to leave them after they had lost him.

You know, maybe he had just capitulated. Maybe he had killed himself, as he could not tolerate living that life anymore. I remember that my mother and grandmother told me that he had married some stupid bitch who abused him and betrayed him. His own father had died not long ago, too – at least I think it was in that order.

So one night, he would have drunk well, taken the car, and in nihilistic despair driven it into some tree on the side of the road, only to then have his damaged corpse found by somebody, somewhen. That somebody would somewhen call my grandmother. She would stand up, go to the telephone, pick it up and then we would hear a bloodcurdling cry of agony and she would break down. And who knows; maybe then, the boy would just have to wait in his room. I would have to wait in my room. To let the adults deal with their loss. And let the cold whispering night embrace my soul. And it would whisper: Are you afraid of the dark? And the little boy would close his mind.

Finally, my obsession with darkness and the morbid makes sense. Finally this song makes sense. Finally I feel it again. Finally, I am ready to whisper back: Not anymore.

And maybe the darkness was never the enemy. Maybe the darkness was my friend from the beginning. When it whispered, when it asked, it did not mean to threaten me. It meant to help me. The darkness nothing but my own grief that I needed to reunite with. But I could not, there was no place for it. So my life consisted of faking happiness while longing for the darkness, a darkness that felt more real than any facade. But instead of reuniting with the darkness inside, I seeked it on the outside. In fights. In violence. In movies. But I could never connect with it, because it was never on the outside to begin with. Like a sex addict longing for unreachable intimacy, I was addicted to morbidity in a desperate attempt to feel the grief I was not allowed and afraid and too ashamed to feel. I sang about the pain. I composed songs that expressed it. But I did not feel it and did not understand why I was creating that art. I was too afraid to let the Grim Reaper and his dark legions come and help me release the pain. The Grim Reaper is not evil, no. His demons are benevolent. They are scary, as they must be, but accept their help and these dark creatures of the night will guide you through the process of letting go and finding back into life. They will take him away, take him out of my heart, guide this remaining part of his soul into the afterlife and make place for somebody else in my own.

Yes, Grim Reaper. Come. Come get him. He is yours now. Yes, please, take the pain too. Help yourself, it is all yours. I no longer need it. Thank you. I love you. Until next time.

But that is nothing I had the freedom or wisdom to do back then. Yeah, they told me that I must take care of my mother. Because she lost her brother and her father and is mad. Yeah, I must take care of her. I wonder if anyone ever asked how I felt about losing the one great man in my life whom I loved and looked up to. I bet that there was no place for those emotions. And if there was, there was nobody I could trust to know about them. Not one of those witches.

No, I do not remember ever being asked how I felt about it. I had no right to grieve him, he was theirs, not mine. It was not assumed that he could or should mean anything to me. But had they asked, what would I have said? I would not have said anything.

But my mother did always say she loved me. Did do so much for me. But did she and grandmother really love me? Or did she rather try to make me into a replacement of the men she had lost? Did I have to be them and not myself? Yes, very probably. I did not mean anything to her when I was born and then it became my duty to be a mirror of my uncle. Your uncle was always so nice and kind to me, Tom. I wish you were more like him.

Yes Tom, now that you are here and we have to tolerate you, you can at least try to be like your uncle. That is the least you can do.

Fuck you. Fuck you!

And this also explains the two faces of my mother. The one that adored me in endless naivety – or rather something she tried to see in me – and the one that despised me and was indifferent. And that conflict confused me, endlessly. Was I loved? Not loved? What was love, anyway?

So instead of being allowed to grieve and let go, I was used as an instrument for them to not having to let go.

And maybe it is another achievment of our restrained Western culture. Another achievment of an emotionally repressed demon-fearing culture to not be able to grieve and let go. To have to keep it all pent up. And to then have no way to deal with it but revenge, hatred, blaming and denial.

Incidentally, if you want to see how unrestrained and confident people express grief, check out this sequence from Bruce Parry’s documentary Tribe, in particular the people rolling on the floor:

Also note Bruce’s typical Western reaction. He calls it terrible screams and says that they are inconsolable. Sounds like oh please, do not cry. Instead of realizing that this is simply a natural and absolutely fine emotional expression and in no way pathological. Rather, very healthy.

Back in the now

So here I am, crying, shouting, whimpering, howling, remembering how one more part of life feels.

And it is not simply a cry of sadness and loss, no, it is much more. It is despair and terror also, from the certain knowledge of a 2 year old that he now has no more confidante, that he now is on his own, on his own among those who do not love, respect or even understand him.

Here I am, losing it in the early morning, unconcerned what the neighbors may think. I just remembered that little boy. That pitiable little boy in hell. Fuck them.

It is funny – and logical – that I always felt a strong anxiety and pain when somebody said that I looked sad. Or bitter. Or damaged. Triggering.

But now, it is not even a decision to cry. It just is.

I had no idea, you know. I had no idea how crying really felt. When others cried, it always looked like show to me.

Crying feels … good. Actually, it feels almost like nothing at all. It just happens. When one is free to express one’s emotions, good or bad, they just wash over you and there is hardly any mentionable pain. Or, well, there is pain, but it feels good. It feels right. Empowering. It just flows. Hard to describe.

Maybe the right word is effortless. Free of internal conflict. Yes, that fits best. It is not a conscious effort. All my life, I was a faker. When I was nice to somebody, it was an act of willpower, motivated by the fear of punishment when I was not.

Yes, the biggest surprise is that it is indeed effortless, no conscious effort, not fake. Real emotional expression is not the decision to imitate particular gestures of emotional expression or express yourself the right way. It is like you being a spectator in a body that just does what it is supposed to do. Like watching a robot assemble a car. Only that this robot rids itself of the pain by crying and jerking around.

Indeed, it feels a bit like being possessed by a demon. Incidentally, in computers, daemons are tools that work in the background, doing maintenance work and ensuring the whole system keeps running fine. They work automatically, and so do I now. The daemon, that automatic maintenance process, helps me get through the emotional process of letting go of the pain. Like a heartbeat, it does not require intervention.

Intervention is only necessary when emotional expression is not allowed. It is the suppression that hurts. It is the denial that makes you feel dead and empty inside, a pain worse than anything I know. To feel it, but be unable to release it. A slowly broiling rage, but without the courage to act on it.

And I must have been damn terrified to suppress a pain as strong as this one for 24 years. I must have been terrified of opening up to those witches. No fucking way I would have kept this intense pain and grief with me for so long otherwise. My Ayahuasca ceremony surely gave me a glimpse about this shit a year ago.

Rather, I guess, I needed to take care of them, let my emotions be buried for then, to ensure my survival and the survival of my heart. To take care of my caretakers so that I could live.

Fare well, uncle

A year ago, I threw away practically all my photographs. But among the very few I kept, there was this picture of my uncle.

Uncle

I did not know why I kept it. I used to look at it and feel nothing. I am not even sure if that is me in the picture.

But damn, what a kind gesture. What a man. The big man of my life.

I always tried to reconnect with it by seeking masculine men. By growing that same kind of awesome beard. Was I aware of it? Of course not.

And look at his bony eyebrows. When I saw a man with bony eyebrows in the past, I just had to flee. I thought that I was intimidated. And in a sense, I was.

Now I look at it and understand. The subconscious is a beast.

Now I look in the mirror and see a boy. A man. A more complete being. A being that makes sense.

Now I no longer have to run from masculinity, I shall hope. No longer do I need to feel oppressed and panicky when other men express themselves in manly ways. No longer do I need to run from male friendship, or can learn to love men again. No longer do I need to be terrified of females, for I am no longer a helpless little boy. For I am now one of the conspirators. One of the patriarchs. A king to come.

But I guess that it will still take a while to actually reach the point where I am over it. Surely, in coming meditations, I will need to look at it from other perspectives, then reevaluate my whole life from a masculine perspective. And then maybe reexperience some emotions of the event that I did not yet cover.

Anyway.

So here you go, uncle. Fare well. I hope you have a good journey. I wish you had been there with me, but I forgive you for departing. Who can blame you? I just wish you had thought of me. When a grown man can not deal with those bitches, how can a 2 year old? But it is your life, I understand. I hardly meant as much to you as you to me. I do not know how I was ever able to believe that two years with a man who then died had no emotional impact on a 2 year old. But life plays its tricks on us.

Fare well, long dead uncle, the only dad I ever had, maybe the only family I ever loved.

And in contrast, how do I feel about my biological father? More like a friend, I guess. A guy who helped me through a difficult phase of my life once, but is otherwise emotionally insignificant to me. I guess that he fulfilled his duty by spending those 4 weeks with me and at least giving me that one impulse to leave my mother and eventually heal. It is okay so.

But now that I no longer have to pretend to be him, no longer have to live as a shadow of a better man: Who am I?

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  • Tom,
    I’m sorry about the loss of your Uncle. Also I liked the music you have written! You are a man with many talents Tom. Having creative talents is a pert of masculinity, so do not worry my friend you are doing the right thing and your Uncle sees that and I’m sure he is prod if you.

    Great post Tom

  • Oliver Maerk

    http://freedompowerandwealth.com

    I am sorry
    for your uncle. Remember his legacy – that is the true treasure he has left to
    his family.

    • Thanks. There is no legacy. But then, I would not care for it. People are more important. Everything else is just stuff.

  • Tom, I love your music man. I have two questions:

    1. What equipment and software did you use for “Teknody”

    2. Are you using a midi keybord for “Not yours”? I am looking to buy one. What do you think about Korg microKEY-61?

    • Hey, thanks.

      1. I used Cubase 6, a strong multi-core computer, a Fireface 800 interface, East West Symphony orchestra, possibly an Eleven Rack for the electrical guitar sound, a small condenser microphone from AKG and a classical guitar.

      2. No. In this case, I wrote down the music in a software called MuseScore. It was a guitar piece originally, but guitars are hard to emulate and the piece too hard for me to play, so I went with East West piano. I transferred the notes into Cubase via a midi file and then simply fine tuned until I was satisfied. I also used a tempo track to make the tempo more dynamic.

  • Micah Geni

    hi tom. related. Jungian archetypes: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jungian_archetypes

    A quick look at many of your headlines on your page, you seem to have been a “archetype chaser”. A boy searcing for “your right” archetype.

    Personally I tend to consider the concept, based on the quick glance that I have had, a sort of “childish”. “Hollywoodish”. There is a self, apart from those types. I may suspect some have less, some have more, but that we all have the capability of digging through to it, and also increasing it. Something more natural and “solid” than 1 chosen archetype. It is a bit like multi-archetypes, unsorted. What tends to fall a bit natural, when in touch with the deeper self. Makes “role model” a bit less needed.
    Then again, “role models” can be, depending on the model, and type of upbringing, be a starting point. Personally, Id say most people who lives natural (and that is not to damage other people and one’s environment), according to their true inner nature, will tend to consider the archetypical structure less obvious and rather non-existent. More a direct total feedback from Emotions, Rationality and Spirituality, that blends to a “piece of mind”, than a comparison to what may be called an “inner Ego”, which could be “archetype” or “ideal”.

    I guess Jung would have argued against it, claiming that we all act according to some archetype. Not sure how he argues there. Personally I think they may be a starting point, as mentioned, but that more true freedom comes, emotionally, when one starts to act and think more independently of any “type” or preconception.

    Thoughts now that you more or less have been through a lot of the more typical “archetypes” ?

    • Yes, good point. I think that one’s personality becomes very fluid, once individuation is more advanced. I chased those archetypes because I had not internalized them. Of course they were caricatures. They were very distinct parts of me that I had dissociated from.

  • Micah Geni

    Green eyes ?

    • Green brown, or something like that.

  • Funny you talk about your uncle. My uncle played a very similar role in my life as a teenager. He showed me how to be a man.

    I remember he came to pick me up one day to go do some fishing, camping, and hunting. It was out of the blue, and he was a drug addict therefore prone to impulsive behavior, but the lesson was the same. He came in and said pack up so we can roll. I told him I had a list of chores my mom told me to do, and he said “fuck your mom, and fuck those chores. We are running out of daylight, that shit can get done later, and it is not like it even matters.” So I packed my shit and left. I did not even tell I was going, I just left a note. It was such a freeing experience. He also taught me a few other things that I have carried well into my adult life.

    Unfortunately I watched him die as well, but not a conscious death. It was a death as I described in a previous comment, the death you received when you stop growing.

    I have not spoken to him in a few years. In fact I looked him up on facebook to see how he was doing after I read this, and the sight of him disgusted me. Sometimes I think it is better for men to be gone of this world before they have a chance to be such a complete mockery of what they once stood for. I often think about that in terms of my own death. If I were to die today, I would die proud. I do not know if I could say the same 30 years later.

    • That sounds like a great key experience. One I would have loved as well. To see a light in the dark, to escape the authority of Do as I say. I mentioned in other places that my mother always took the side of the police or school or teachers whenever something happened.

      When I lived at the boarding home, I once tried to walk away because I was pissed. One of the male youth care workers set after me and dragged me back. It was such a feeling of powerlessness; I was not very courageous and I did not try again.

      This feeling of ‘Fuck what others expect, I want to do this now’ is something I am coming to regain these days. One of my ideas to break my routine is to go on a long bicycle tour in January or February, to North Germany. When I was small, my mother always pressured me into not coming home too late; somehow, it is still inside myself to not dare be away from home too long. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I do not really live there anymore. That nobody really cares if I decide to sleep outside. That I can do what I want. That thought is freeing, but it does not yet reach me completely. It will, soon.

      I understand the disgust you feel and I think it is natural. On the other hand, I think that your concerns to die proud are a bit narcissistic. Note that when I use the word narcissism, I always mean it in the sense of ‘what mask do I need to portray to others?’

      You are disappointed by your uncle’s degradation. But it is his life, his choice. He obviously seems to need the experience. He does not need to stand for anything. Neither do you. For whom? Who is watching? Nobody is watching, nobody cares. When you fall, you will stand back up again. In this life or in the next. Or in the one after the next.

      It amazes me a little how you talk about your uncle and yet claim to have respect for me. Andrew, I am 40 pounds overweight, weak and without my beard, I look like a bitter Professor Snape. I suck with girls and I have no friends. My living place is a mess. The only thing I have going for myself are my meditations and my intellect and the confidence that I will be able to leave that shit behind – but I know I can never leave it behind until I acknowledge it and come to peace with it. Else I will live in fear of it – and that fear will attract. Attract it more with each act of pushing it away.

      • Good points about my narcissism and my judgment of my uncle. I will think on them. As far as my respect for you is concerned, any idiot can drop 40 pounds, clean up their shithole apartment, get a few girls, and get some friends. You know this as well. It takes something considerable to do all the digging and bleeding you have been doing. That is why I respect you as I do.

        • But can the same not be said about your uncle? Sooner or later, he will bleed and heal, too. Come think of it, if he was a drug addict and impulsive, he was likely in a lot of pain already and it was only a matter of time before he would break down. And as you say about any idiot being able to drop 40 pounds – what aspect of the situation of your uncle’s can not be solved by any idiot? In the end, every achievment is simple and straight-forward, any pain easy to leave behind; if you know how to get yourself to want to.

          • Fuck! More good points. God damnit Tom. I was trying to shut my brain down tonight. Oh well, occasionally insomnia strikes for me. I guess I will be productive.

          • Haha!