I see so much about politics these days, especially on social media. Most of it is hate because people can say what they want because a screen is removing the emotional connection that we feel when we are conversing with people face to face. I was raised in a conservative house but those that know me today know that if they had just met me, they would’ve never guessed. I talk about my father as if he has passed away, unintentionally, but the reality is, due to trumpism he has.
I was raised with 2 other siblings who had more needs than I did. I was fairly independent and stuck to myself. This environment enabled me to become a well played liar. I could hide, destroy, cover up enough evidence that eventually I got away with a lot to avoid punishment afterwards. This went on into my mid teens when my dad became more involved and once he realized the level of my lying, he had to act firmly to help me recover. It was long stressful arguments. Him questioning me and it getting to the point where it caused a drive between my parents. He then would question me, let me give an answer, and then investigate himself. No matter how slick I thought I was he EVENTUALLY always found out. Always. Time and Time again he would catch me in lies that I normally would’ve gotten away with. He could’ve ignored it and it would’ve been easier, absolutely.. but it wasn’t in my best interest. He also handled how he dealt with me as he also understood in the same breath that I was a product of my environment and punishments changed to lectures. I was addicted to lying and coping skills to avoid trouble and instead of being spanked or grounded he’d give me 3+ hour lectures about the importance. I felt like someone was treating me like an actual human being and like someone saw that I WAS smart enough to grasp the concepts and needed a new way to be taught the lesson… and it eventually worked.
It was hard not to lie, especially as I was early in recovering from my lying and people had a hard time believing me even when I was honest. After a few years of it and appreciating the relief of brutal honesty and not having to remember all the pieces to try and cover the lies, I went through some horrible things by a man and I was not believed and didn’t even feel like I could defend myself on the injustice because of my past.. I had been a liar and I didn’t blame them for not trusting me and it was the final nail in my coffin for lying.
Today, the man I once respected and admired for being the stubborn force behind my recovery is gone while he physically remains here. This man is an admirer of Trump, watching/attending rallies level. Anything that comes out against trump is a “political hit job” to my dad now and anything can be easily dismissed and disputed by that and that alone. If no other defense works then he has the comfort of always falling back on a defense. How can he see my defenses and cover ups but not even take a glance at anything else towards trump or any conservative politician under the same magnifying glass he does for Democrats? Is it just about winning at this point?
To be clear, I believe my dad is still in there. However, I believe that he has been persuaded to a mindset of living in such fear and feeling like he, personally, is being attacked that it has engulfed him to be who he is now. I feel guilty for not having the patience that my dad did for me but as of right now, I am alone. Though there are those around him that disagree with him… they, for their own reasons, cannot speak up and out to him. He’s surrounded himself by like-minded people on Facebook and other parts of the internet and I fear what is to come. A hyped emotional human mind living in fear is a scary thing and can quickly tiptoe their way towards being Christian versions of the extremists from around the world they claim they’re afraid of before they realize what they’ve become.
I was in disbelief when a doctor told me I had shot up to almost 400lbs. I told them their scale was broken and tried to cling to that being a possibility before accepting that I neglected my thyroid and health and it’s taken me 5+ years to reverse the damage and still going. You’d think with buying bigger clothes that I would have noticed gaining almost 200 lbs but it happened so invisibly to me that I couldn’t see it and I think some of it was I didn’t want to. I laugh about it now but I truly was in disbelief and the things I came up with in an attempt to convince myself I wasn’t almost 400 lbs, like dispute what the scale said, was ridiculous especially to everyone but me. I even remember going on Facebook and asking what the chances were a scale could be off. The entire experience opened my eyes to show how quickly I could fall into a similar cycle in other aspects of my life, including politics, and having been working and figuring out how to combat this.
The last part of this is acceptance. I’ve had to accept that my dad does not have the same experiences as I do and is probably flying just as blind in life as the rest of us. He may not have the tools or experience to look at himself or life the way I do and I cannot fault him for that. We do not speak these days but it’s due to many factors way beyond politics and I’m hoping someday we can figure out how to communicate. I had to accept my weight before I could begin to change it and I also had to accept that someday I could gain it all back again BUT I am confident that I have enough experience now that I can and will recognize it before I spiral that bad again or at least be willing to hear what’s being said by those around me who are important enough that I’ll value what they have to say and help me through it, even if I can’t see it in that moment. Just like my food addiction, trumpism can be just as addictive and appealing to some and it is important that, if things that are factual and can’t be disputed, we face them and have the balls to say it’s wrong even if it’s against the people we believe in and support.