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#481 of 1766 Old 09-22-2006, 12:19 PM
 
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I just had to chime back in this morning. I agree wholeheartedly with what sledg says above (as always!) about the myths we are fed about mothering in this country. And I really do think that it's primarily our country that gets stuck on this crap. I call it parenting in isolation. I know that this is not the topic, but really, mamas, I think one of the only ways we can start enjoying parenting more, start relaxing a bit, and most importantly start going a bit easier on ourselves, is by continuuing to be honest with ourselves, each other, and the WORLD, about mothering.
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#482 of 1766 Old 09-22-2006, 06:37 PM
 
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I've been reading this thread for a while and have been wanting to post, but was afraid of my other MDC friends might think I'm a "bad mother". Today I just had to post.

We do our best to practice compassionate parenting, but I lose my cool sometimes. We're even part of an NVC (non-violent communication) practice group.

Ds "chose to potty" before our now 1 y/o was born. Then he regressed, and chose to use diapers, again. He "chose to potty" again a few months ago, and has been doing super well. Well, this past week has been a nightmare!!! He's been pooping in his pants every day. Sometimes more than once, like just now. He pooped in his room in his pants when he woke up from his nap, trailed it through the house and got it in the carpet. Then a few moments ago he's standing in the kitchen and poops right next to his brother leaving a pile. I could have torn him to shreds. Dh got there before me, but he was super upset, as well, though he handles these situations better than I do.

Ds has been such a challenge lately. More and more in the past couple weeks. I find myself screaming at the top of my lungs and threatening him with sending him to "sit in his room and think whether he was being gentle or rough/cooperative or disrespectful". He usually gets super upset, yells, and then comes down saying he's sorry. But he repeats the behavior moments later.

We sit with him, ask him what his needs are, cuddle with him when he's not trying to be Mr. Funny Guy and kick or hit us. Oh, and he's constantly throwing stuff, growling and spitting.

I'm a Sahm and yoga teacher, but I don't even want to be around him anymore. I want a longggg vacation from parenting. :

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#483 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 01:18 AM
 
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Mamas, you don't know how nice it feels to be here. I was just passing over the main board when I saw this as the recent post and knew I had to come in.

I grew up in a home where my mom was either gone completely, or when she was back was abusive mentally/physically/sexually. I thought I was past it, i thought I had moved on.

Then my son became a toddler. An independant being that I can't control anymore. Suddenly all I seem to feel is rage and anger and I just want to get the hell away from him. I love him so much, he's my pride and joy. But when I just want to get something done and he won'tgive me space, or I want him to go to bed but he insists on "one more story", or I am just tired and want to left the hell alone.

And I hate feeling this way. I've got a ton of books on compassinate parenting, I read so many posts hre at MDC, I talk to other moms who seem so calm and loving. And I try, I try my damnedest to be better. Then sometihng happens and all I feel is rage and its like watching someone else. i can't stop until its done. Then I feel guilty, and the guilt lays on me making me feel worse, which only fuels my next moment.

I love my babies. I don't want to be angry with them. I don't want to yell at them. I want to be the mom I know I can be.

Mom of 3 (Evan, Trey, Saffron ) Blogs at findingsummer.com
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#484 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 01:37 AM
 
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Then sometihng happens and all I feel is rage and its like watching someone else. i can't stop until its done. Then I feel guilty, and the guilt lays on me making me feel worse, which only fuels my next moment.

I love my babies. I don't want to be angry with them. I don't want to yell at them. I want to be the mom I know I can be.
I am heading to bed. But, wanted to suggest an idea I have heard about. Place photos of your child as a baby strategically so that you see the baby face, it is much harder to yell at a baby. Make "he is just a baby" your mantra. Write cards to inspire you 'Breathe', 'Calm', 'Peace', 'Love', 'Think', 'Whisper', 'Gentle', etc. and place them in the kitchen, on the bathroom wall, on the door (trying) to go out to the car, over his bed, on the ceiling over your bed, on the bathroom mirror, etc. I heard this "reminder" helps to change the self-talk from 'I need' to refocus on the child's dependent needs for security and stability.

It is critical to find a way to meet my needs before 3pm. It is hopeless after that point. So, I try to get us outside early in the day, which helps me; and get protein in myself early and again around 3-4pm to sustain me. We had a mother's helper who came after school for an hour or so. Best $8 for 2 hours, I'd look forward to it as my saving grace. By planning her "intervention" for me 2-3 times a week, even if ds didn't play with her, I had someone to talk to at that hour and it was a break.

HTH, Pat

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#485 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 04:02 AM
 
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I just have to say that one of our worst, most insidious cultural myths is the one that says (or rather, implies) that one person, usually a woman, can and should take care of a tiny human (or humans) all by herself, on-call 24/7, and do it with an ever-present smile, without ever feeling angry or resentful or impatient or completely exhausted.
Thank you for this. It is totally how I feel. I am Angry. I am Resentful. I am Impatient. I am Completely Exhausted.

I want to hit my husband alongside the head with a sippy cup when I see him sitting and playing Warcraft and I'm putting kids back to bed.

I want to throw all our dishes on the floor and break them because I'm tired of emptying the dishwasher by myself (although DD#1 does help with silverware.)

I want to sleep on a bare mattress so I don't have to wash sheets anymore. (I know that wouldn't work!)

I want to dump the garbage in his car because I'm sick of it never getting taken out without me doing it, or asking three times.

I want an equal division of labor. Yes, I'm a SAHM, but I never get a break. Ever. Even my breaks from the kids are still work.

I want my DD's to be happy and laugh every day. I'm completely tired of feeling that there aren't enough hours in the days for everything I want to do. I know I need to let some stuff go, but I can't figure out what.
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#486 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 10:08 AM
 
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Originally Posted by lovesprout View Post
I've been reading this thread for a while and have been wanting to post, but was afraid of my other MDC friends might think I'm a "bad mother". Today I just had to post.

We do our best to practice compassionate parenting, but I lose my cool sometimes. We're even part of an NVC (non-violent communication) practice group.

Ds "chose to potty" before our now 1 y/o was born. Then he regressed, and chose to use diapers, again. He "chose to potty" again a few months ago, and has been doing super well. Well, this past week has been a nightmare!!! He's been pooping in his pants every day. Sometimes more than once, like just now. He pooped in his room in his pants when he woke up from his nap, trailed it through the house and got it in the carpet. Then a few moments ago he's standing in the kitchen and poops right next to his brother leaving a pile. I could have torn him to shreds. Dh got there before me, but he was super upset, as well, though he handles these situations better than I do.

Ds has been such a challenge lately. More and more in the past couple weeks. I find myself screaming at the top of my lungs and threatening him with sending him to "sit in his room and think whether he was being gentle or rough/cooperative or disrespectful". He usually gets super upset, yells, and then comes down saying he's sorry. But he repeats the behavior moments later.

We sit with him, ask him what his needs are, cuddle with him when he's not trying to be Mr. Funny Guy and kick or hit us. Oh, and he's constantly throwing stuff, growling and spitting.

I'm a Sahm and yoga teacher, but I don't even want to be around him anymore. I want a longggg vacation from parenting. :
Are you needing reassurance both that you are a good, normal mother? Are you needing more ease in your day? Are you needing support? Are you needing help, as in a mother's helper to help care for your son or help with housework? Are you needing reassurance that your son's behavior is normal? Are you wanting strategies/advice for dealing with your son's poop accidents? Are you needing to take care of yourself--more sleep, better nutrition, exercise or outside time, time with friends, etc.?

Probably the GD forum or Childhood Years forum is a better place to address your son's behavior, but is there something stressful going on for him now? Sometimes what's stressful to a child is something we adults wouldn't think of as stressful.

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Originally Posted by BurgundyElephant

Thank you for this. It is totally how I feel. I am Angry. I am Resentful. I am Impatient. I am Completely Exhausted.

I want to hit my husband alongside the head with a sippy cup when I see him sitting and playing Warcraft and I'm putting kids back to bed.

I want to throw all our dishes on the floor and break them because I'm tired of emptying the dishwasher by myself (although DD#1 does help with silverware.)

I want to sleep on a bare mattress so I don't have to wash sheets anymore. (I know that wouldn't work!)

I want to dump the garbage in his car because I'm sick of it never getting taken out without me doing it, or asking three times.

I want an equal division of labor. Yes, I'm a SAHM, but I never get a break. Ever. Even my breaks from the kids are still work.

I want my DD's to be happy and laugh every day. I'm completely tired of feeling that there aren't enough hours in the days for everything I want to do. I know I need to let some stuff go, but I can't figure out what.
It sounds like you need a lot more support and help from your dh, eh? Could you get someone else to help out, if he is unable/unwilling and you can't work it out together? Could you hire a mother's helper, even, just to help out a little? Got family or friends to help? It's hard to be a sahm, it really is. You know, I wanted my kids to be happy and laughing all the time, every day. But sometimes it just isn't happening. And there arent's enough hours in the day for everything I want or think I need to do. But really, a lot can be let go and we'll still get everything done that we actually really need done. House may not look perfect, we may occasionally run out of clean underwear and have to go commando, we may have to sometimes eat meals that are less than nutritionally ideal (waaaaaay less). But that's okay. I'd rather go commando or eat spaghettios and hot dogs (okay, yes, I know....that is so bad than be totally stressed out and depleted. The kids are happier when I'm happier. I'm happier when I stop holding myself up to some impossible standard of perfect.

Here's a quote I love: "Once I've seen what my feelings and needs are, how can I respond? What I really need is a vacation, and there is no time or money for it.

Check back with this voice that says "I need a vacation." What would a vacation do for you? If we listen closely we begin to hear what we need to provide for ourselves: 'I need a break from the voices in my head telling me everything that's wrong.' 'I need a break from the tension in my body.' 'I need a break from the stress, the relentless demands of parenting.' " -Cheri Huber, Time Out For Parents

That's a great book, btw, and she goes on to say that parents need vacations very often, maybe several times a day. She says there's a two-stage process to taking a mini-vacation whenever you choose. First is learning to turn your attention away from The Story that endlessly plays in our minds, the self-talk that creates stress (you know, "there aren't enough hours, there's so much to do, I'm such a bad parent, etc."). You can take a break from the story by learning to take a little time-out and come into the present moment--look at something beautiful, listen to music you enjoy, feel the sun on your face, hear the beautiful sound of your child's voice. Really be present and feel/hear/see these things. The second stage is to take a break from your standards. You can't do everything every day, so do some. Make easier (and maybe more fun) meals, do one load of laundry instead of two or three or all of it, you get the idea.
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#487 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 10:25 AM
 
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Then my son became a toddler. An independant being that I can't control anymore. Suddenly all I seem to feel is rage and anger and I just want to get the hell away from him. I love him so much, he's my pride and joy. But when I just want to get something done and he won'tgive me space, or I want him to go to bed but he insists on "one more story", or I am just tired and want to left the hell alone.
What has helped me with feelings like this is both to, as scubamama suggested, tape some reminders up around the house, and to learn to let go of (or rather, notice but not believe) the self-talk that says I need/want control, that I need to get this done right now, that I just cannot stand to read one more story, that I need to get away from this child.

One of my favorite quotes to have hanging around was the lettuce quote: "When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don't blame the lettuce. You look into the reasons it is not doing well. It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun. You never blame the lettuce. Yet if we have problems with our friends or our family, we blame the other person. But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like lettuce. Blaming has no positive effect at all, nor does trying to persuade using reason and arguments. That is my experience. No blame, no reasoning, no argument, just understanding. If you understand, and you show that you understand, you can love, and the situation will change." -Thich Nhat Hanh This reminded me to stop and see things from my child's point of view, which helped a lot.

Learning to notice the self-talk but not believe it has been harder. I think we all have gobs of this self-talk, and it's this habit we don't even notice. It's not always easy to bring it into awareness, but once I'm aware of it I can begin to see what I'm actually needing versus what my self-talk is saying I "need." And often just becoming aware of that self-talk, the story, enables me to let it go so I can focus on my child's needs and the current situation in a more calm and compassionate way (and then I can take care of my own needs after we resolve what's happening, and some of my needs are met just by giving some empathy and compassion to myself). It does take effort, it is a daily practice, it's not easy. But it has been very helpful.

Hanging on to shame and guilt will not help, I've found that only makes it harder to grow and change. It's so important to forgive yourself and be compassionate with yourself. See the lettuce quote above: You are the lettuce, too. Blaming yourself doesn't help, heaping "shoulds" upon yourself doesn't help. Understanding and compassion for yourself help. And since compassion breeds compassion, by being compassionate with yourself you'll have more compassion to give your children. Compassion and understanding are not the same as approval, not the same as saying "it's okay if I scream at my kids." We strive to be compassionate with our children, to understand why they (for example) hit someone and then instead of shaming them work to address the reasons for their behavior--and we don't think the reason our children hit someone is because they are "bad", and we know our compassion doesn't communicate approval of hitting. We deserve the same compassion as adults.
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#488 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 10:27 AM
 
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I'd rather go commando or eat spaghettios and hot dogs than be totally stressed out and depleted. The kids are happier when I'm happier.
yes, yes, yes!!
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#489 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 11:31 PM
 
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Are you needing reassurance both that you are a good, normal mother? Are you needing more ease in your day? Are you needing support? Are you needing help, as in a mother's helper to help care for your son or help with housework? Are you needing reassurance that your son's behavior is normal? Are you wanting strategies/advice for dealing with your son's poop accidents? Are you needing to take care of yourself--more sleep, better nutrition, exercise or outside time, time with friends, etc.?

Probably the GD forum or Childhood Years forum is a better place to address your son's behavior, but is there something stressful going on for him now? Sometimes what's stressful to a child is something we adults wouldn't think of as stressful.
Umm, my problem has way more to do with DS behavior. Yes, he's a ton to handle but it's more than just that. I end up flipping out often. OFTEN! I lose my cool in an instant. I'm like a maddened lion, sometimes, and poor older DS is usually the spark.

Perhaps, this isn't the forum for me. But I've been reading the posts for a while and felt it was what came closest to my feelings. A community that understood me.

If I was out of line with posting here, I apologize.

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#490 of 1766 Old 09-23-2006, 11:45 PM
 
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"When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don't blame the lettuce. You look into the reasons it is not doing well. It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun. You never blame the lettuce. Yet if we have problems with our friends or our family, we blame the other person. But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like lettuce. Blaming has no positive effect at all, nor does trying to persuade using reason and arguments. That is my experience. No blame, no reasoning, no argument, just understanding. If you understand, and you show that you understand, you can love, and the situation will change." -Thich Nhat Hanh

Sledg...Great quote. I think that one is going to be posted in my kitchen and at work. Along with the babies pictures. Really wonderful ideas to help me click back to reality when I have lost my cool. Thanks!
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#491 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 12:27 AM
 
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Umm, my problem has way more to do with DS behavior. Yes, he's a ton to handle but it's more than just that. I end up flipping out often. OFTEN! I lose my cool in an instant. I'm like a maddened lion, sometimes, and poor older DS is usually the spark.

Perhaps, this isn't the forum for me. But I've been reading the posts for a while and felt it was what came closest to my feelings. A community that understood me.

If I was out of line with posting here, I apologize.
Oh, no! I can't speak for Sledg, but I believe that she was offering that there are a lot of wise mamas in the GD forum who have a perspective of respecting children while empathizing about behavior issues and finding solutions that could make life easier for all of you. I believe that this thread is specifically for supporting mamas. And of course you are welcome here. But, if you want more concrete ideas for addressing conflicts with your son, the GD forum or Childhood forums are helpful too.

You might consider one of the Bach Flower remedies: Rescue Remedy or Cherry Plum for general upsets and anger, respectively. I also like Elm for when I feel overwhelmed with responsibility. And Beech helps when I am short on patience with others. These help me in the heat of the moment to keep my cool and think, instead of blow.

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#492 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 01:36 AM
 
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I'm not posting anything personal right now, but I want to say that I'm so glad for this thread. I'm not ALONE and that makes such a difference for me. Thank you for this thread!!
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#493 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 04:18 AM
 
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Umm, my problem has way more to do with DS behavior. Yes, he's a ton to handle but it's more than just that.
I think this thread is meant to address this EXACTLY. Don't leave. I completely understand that while there are things that may help your DS's behavior, that isn't what this is about. It is about our reactions to our children's behaviors-- how we can understand them, and what we can do about them.

My lightbulb moment came the other night. I was at the grocery store after dinner. My DC had been very difficult during dinner, AGAIN. (It was funny-- there was an ad on in the store talking about how eating dinner as a family helps curb drug use and such . . .how great it is to eat dinner together. . .) As I walked around the store, I saw children of all ages and backgrounds as difficult (in my eyes). I saw how parents reacted differently. Parents didn't STOP the behavior, but some were laid back about it, some were angry. It made me realize that (a) my DC is very normal (b) she isn't going to magically grow out of difficult behavior (in my eyes) so I better start learning how to deal with her/accept her AS IS vs. worrying about changing it and (c) an angry reaction helps no one. No one.

That moment has helped me so much these past few days. Working on the acceptance of the moment vs panicking and being frustrated has made a difference. It's a lesson I have been learning over and over again, but as my DC changes I forget and have to relearn it.

Hugs to everyone!

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#494 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 05:13 AM
 
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i think i may have posted here once before. I lurk.

I am completely lost with rage. and i know why it's happening. but i can't seem to stop it. I am 90 percent ap, gentle mama,. and 10 percent monster from the depths of hell, torturing my children with my daily tantrums and outbursts. I can't handle parenting any more. This is too much work for me. I never should have had kids. I say the same abusive, hurtful, contemptuous things my mother said to me.

My kids are incredibly intense and active and needy. DH moved to another country, and things in some respects are easier because i don't have to deal with his personality in the equation of our daily life. I have a lot of help with the kids (MIL), but it's never enough.

I feel so stressed out just with the knowledge that i have the responsibility of children. I hate the domestic life. I never wanted to be so sedentary. I'm nervous, stressed, negative. I am so unhappy, i hate my life, I am deeply depressed, living in the future, unable to slow down to enjoy what i have, full of self hatred and feeings of inadequacy... I can't even imagine having to have a job. I think i would collapse and die. I hate poisoning my chlidren with my sadness and frustration that has nothing to do with them. They are the best things that ever happened to me and i'm f*cking it up competely. My dd hates me. She is dramatic, rude and volatile... guess where she learned that?

okay going to crawl back under my rock.
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#495 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 10:18 AM
 
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I feel so stressed out just with the knowledge that i have the responsibility of children. I hate the domestic life.
mama. Do you feel this depression is unrelated to being a SAHM? (I say this because you also say you can't imagine having a job.) True depression is not something you can just "get over" without some professional help. Is there anyone you can talk to?

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#496 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 10:28 AM
 
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i think our issues are twofold. first, we have to discipline ourselves (which is why we post here). second, we can discipline our kids (which we may get tips on in the GD forums). if you're stressed, overwhelmed, PMSy, or just having a cranky day you're always welcome here.

sphinx: first off a big oh, and i really like your location.

you said you're not working and can't really imagine it, but if you have childcare help anyway, maybe something part time would do you good. when ds was 2mos we moved back to ME from CT. we were closer to my mom, but totally removed from all our best friends and our former lives. dh had work as a sort of social outlet, but i had nothing. i felt trapped in the house and prematurely aged, like i wasn't allowed to have fun or be myself anymore after having a child.

after many meltdowns and a lotta therapy in the first 2 1/2 years, i finally got a job and it's been AMAZING for me. our schedules allow me to work 40hrs, but even part time would help.

first, i get to feel like i'm actually contributing to our family's finances, instead of feeling like a leech.

second, i'm not just sitting on the couch or sleeping 1/2 the day feeling sorry for myself; i'm actually being active, which has improved my body and my mind.

third, the space away from ds has made me appreciate our time together so much more, instead of feeling resentful or trapped, then guilty for feeling that way.

finally, it's given me motivation to be ME again. that's hard to explain, but sometimes it's just little stuff like having people comment on a funky hairdo or a cute new pair of sneakers, or an invitation to have drinks after work for someone's birthday; stuff that has nothing to do with being a mom, just being KELLY.

again, i know this may not be possible for you right now, but even if you could spare 5-10hrs a week, i highly recommend it. and don't lurk too much. if it helps to unload some of your crap on us strangers, that's what we're here for.
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#497 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 11:20 AM
 
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oooohhhggghhhgghh where to start. thanks for your empathy and help ladies.

Part of my rage comes from deep feelings of uncertainty, plus emotional abandonment from when i was a kid - my mom was unhappy, enraged, resentful, neglectful and hateful, and i fear i am becoming like her. My plan (if you asked me between age 12 and 25!) was to be single mother of one child, a writer, who would travel the world with my dd. I guess that is still what I wish i could do. I feel like i took a bunch of wrong turns and ended up here. I want to have faith that i'm supposed to be here, but there's just no big signs confirming it... i can't seem to figure it out. I don't want to just take some meaningless job. That would make me feel more trapped and frustrated (though the financial aspect would help me feel freer in some ways).

i'm constantly worried because i haven't figured out my calling in life. I'm a jane of all trades, mistress of none, and i'm tired of having no clarity. I am sure i'd be diagnosed ADHD, and yes i've been depressed since i was a kid, never treated, so i guess it's time to deal with that. I have greatly improved by meditating and yoga (yes, the yoga helps, but i am not consistent enough in my practice, and i stopped teaching because i felt it was too much of a responsibility to have others' souls under my tutelage). But the rage has grown the past few years, since going from one to two kids. I was a fantastic mom to one; failing miserably with two.

I do get a lot of time away from my kids (several hours a day) doing things i want to do, so there is space in my life where I can definitely feel like "me". But i get home and instantly stress out. I hate shopping, cooking, cleaning, ironing, keeping house, walking the dog, thinking about furniture and decorating... constantly having to CARE for everyone and everything. I hate this "square" life, I just feel so trapped and suffocated. I have great fun with my kids when i'm out at the park or we are playing drums together. But i just get crushed under all the responsibliity of the daily practical stuff and also the greater philosophical questions that have taken over my mind.

I think i have something big to do in life, but i don't know exactly what it is. I feel myself getting closer to it, but i'm impatient and I also don't have the space/money/time to experiment with my feelings about what it might be. I am deeply attracted to the nomad/community life, working with some greater goal - something like la caravan arcoiris por la paz (fyi: http://www.lacaravana.org/2006/english/homeng.htm). Or being part of the circus or other traveling theatre or something. But dh isn't really interested in that kind of life (understatement) and i've got no experience and don't know how to start moving towards these goals with no education and no money and no resources. And these two dependents.

I thought having kids was great because it gave me a mission, but then after a few years i got bloody exhausted of this mission and scared because it's such important work. I waited until 30 to have kids and still never managed to get where i wanted to go, now i know where i want to go but with kids it seems infeasible and I'm getting old and I want to finally live my dreams, I don't want to settle for less. And mostly I want to be a mama who has joy in her life and passes it on to her kids, but i'm doing just the opposite now.

i feel horrible writing all this but i need to get it out. ugh. thanks for reading. rage comes from such deep sources, huh?
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#498 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 12:09 PM
 
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Boy can I relate. I've already posted once in here to say how grateful I was to find this thread, but I have to say it again. It is embarrasing(sp?) to admit but when I read the posts here I often cry tears of relief that I am not alone. I too hate everything about being a housewife and the whole "square" life, as it was put. I was supposed to be an archaeologist traveling the world, not living in a crappy apartment in a crappy southeastern city with no car and no money. How did this happen to me? It feels just like the teachers always wrote on my report card- 'does not work to her potential.' I can especially relate to the feeling of watching myself be angry, a part of me saying, "Stop it now! Just be nice! What is wrong with you?" but I just can't stop until I'm done. I don't even know where my anger comes from, I was not abused unless you call being ripped out of school and thrown in a mental institution at 14 'abuse.' It wasn't pleasant but it was well-intentioned (although the opposite of helpful and certainly not necessary.) Ok, I feel my disjointed ramble has gone on long enough...
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#499 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 02:33 PM
 
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Umm, my problem has way more to do with DS behavior. Yes, he's a ton to handle but it's more than just that. I end up flipping out often. OFTEN! I lose my cool in an instant. I'm like a maddened lion, sometimes, and poor older DS is usually the spark.

Perhaps, this isn't the forum for me. But I've been reading the posts for a while and felt it was what came closest to my feelings. A community that understood me.

If I was out of line with posting here, I apologize.
Oh dear. I really wasn't implying this was the wrong place, just that you might get tons of wonderful ideas over in the GD forum from lots of wonderful people who've been through all sorts of similar issues with their kids. At the time, I had no concrete, practical ideas to share with you regarding the specific behaviors you mentioned, and thought pointing you in the direction of the other forums might be very helpful. I am sorry that my words implied something else.

What I was getting at with some of what I said was that while our kids' behavior is so often the trigger, it's also so often not really the entire cause of our anger and flipping out. We mothers have our own feelings and needs, and often our responses to our children's behaviors have at least as much to do with our own feelings and needs as with what our children are doing.So while yes we definitely all need suggestions for how to respond to our kids' behavior, we also need support for ourselves. And that was what I was trying to offer you.

Again, my apologies.
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#500 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 06:36 PM
 
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Hi mamas,

I just found this thread and haven't read through the whole thing but want to post now. I relate to a lot of what you women are saying. The hating the square life especially strikes a cord. I really thought I wanted to be a sahm and embrace it fully at first. Now that ds has entered the toddler years with tantrums, etc and my house is a mess but I have a harder time forgiving myself for it and dh and I feel more distant than ever i'm questioning whether sahmotherhood is for me.

...So I recently went back to work very part time. When I got the call from my former boss I wanted to say; why would I want to add working at a job that I no longer love to my already stressful life? Working hasn't be fabulous and all that I might want it to be and it's not my dream job, but I decided that if I'm going to work, I'm going to get help with the one thing I hate the most about the square life - housework. I'm a dunce at it, it puts me in a bad mood most of the time. If I don't want or now how to fix my care, I hire someone. If I don't want or know how to paint a room, I hire someone. I definitely don't want to spend so much time cleaning my house, and I'm also not very good at it, so I'm giving myself permission to hire someone to come every 2 wks. I still have to do a lot of cleaning in the interim, but every two weeks, someone who has no emotional attachment to my stuff or my house comes to clean it well. She's only come once so far, but what a relief! It's still messier than I'd like and became so pretty soon after she left, but at least I can look forward to her coming again and know that if I don't get to the bathroom or whatever, I'll get help soon.

But I'm still rageful, although I mostly feel it toward and take it out on my sweet dh
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#501 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 08:31 PM
 
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hi momster,,,wanting to send a

I've definitely been thru my (many) phases of being frustrated w/SAHM'ing which I see as totally not square myself,,,I love the freedom of being "just" a mama. Growing up I never knew how to clean up after myself,,,wasnt taught,,so that has been a lot of work for me and I feel good about learning and teaching dd, ;its an ongoing process...do whats best for you,,,if you want/can afford help with that then why not!?

blessings and peace to you~~

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#502 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 08:33 PM
 
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Re: the "square" life. I never thought about being a mom one way or another growing up. I assumed I'd have children/get married but it wasn't a dream (or nightmare). I KNEW I would never work in an office . . .even when I visit DH at his office I feel like I am going to suffocate, and I feel so bad for him (but he likes it, so I should stop that!).

One thing that keeps me going is reading about the AP mamas here on MDC who are anything BUT square . . .ya know, those of you who live off the grid, or have talents and skills that you actually use, or somehow manage to create a life of balance and harmony. If I can achieve any of that, I will feel like I've done something with my life.

sphinx, I am also a jane of all trades, so to speak. I graduated with a degree in music performance, which sounds so cool to me on paper, but at this point, I can absolutely not play my instrument. I am back to being a raw beginner. I have been speaking Spanish since birth but still feel like I am so far from being truly fluent that it isn't even funny. I am just not great at anything. I hoped mothering would be my thang, but here I am. Confused, sometimes plain tired of it, all that. I feel like I used to have passion about things, but now, when my "me" time comes (at 9:30 at night), the only thing I want to do is watch my taped re-runs of Facts of Life. DH and I also are addicted to those America's Next Top Model marathons. Yes, this is my life.

But, I know that with 2 little ones and 1 on the way this is just the way it's going to be for awhile. I look forward to them getting older and going back to work as a teacher . . .not because I want to work so badly (or not that I even want time to go so fast), but because then we will have money to travel (and with those 2+ months off, time, too).

I actually don't mind the house stuff, though, because I see it as my own little business. As in, how can I create a place that looks (and feels) peaceful? How efficient can I make my cleaning, cooking, shopping, and use of money? I'm lazy so I'm always looking for the easy way that gets the job done. It is something that distracts me when I've just had enough of the complaining, needing, and demanding from my DC. It helps that I have no pressure from DH to do things a certain way . . .if he were picky, that would make me crazy. I understand that some people just hate that stuff, though, so if you can afford the extra help and it keeps you sane, GO FOR IT!

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#503 of 1766 Old 09-24-2006, 10:37 PM
 
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One of my favorite quotes to have hanging around was the lettuce quote: "When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don't blame the lettuce. You look into the reasons it is not doing well. It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun. You never blame the lettuce. Yet if we have problems with our friends or our family, we blame the other person. But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like lettuce. Blaming has no positive effect at all, nor does trying to persuade using reason and arguments. That is my experience. No blame, no reasoning, no argument, just understanding. If you understand, and you show that you understand, you can love, and the situation will change." -Thich Nhat Hanh This reminded me to stop and see things from my child's point of view, which helped a lot.
Thank you for that quote, I need something like that that I can hang up. My house is full of bright yellow sticky notes with positive sayings and reminders to keep me from getting too wrapped up in the negative.

Mom of 3 (Evan, Trey, Saffron ) Blogs at findingsummer.com
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#504 of 1766 Old 09-25-2006, 04:47 AM
 
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Oh boy, am I glad I chanced across this thread searching for someting else. I too suffer a rage that a post on the first page I really identified with.

The lettuce quote - is that from the book "Anger"? I have read that and probably due for another read through.

Scubamama, thank you for your suggestion of putting baby pictures around - I am going to do that! I have not felt anger towards my 18mth old, but my 3yr old I seem to get a rage that flares up (I have never smacked/spanked), but I too identified with someone earlier on in this thread fantasising about doing things like that. I know I would never, but it scares me that I even have those thoughts and I have never spoken to anyone IRL about it. I am the only one of my friends who GD (I didn't start off that way). I do think that GD is the best thing for my explosive type personality to do though and I know I am getting better and better with it. I read Unconditional Parenting & Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves earlier in the year and they really spoke to me - the hard part is getting past my own natural instincts to parent otherwise.

I also read something earlier on about how there seemed a common link in getting a rage feeling when our own needs were being compromised (like if I'm trying to do something for me, that's when I feel most frustrated and I then feel guilty if I know I've purposefully been saying "just a minute" or something which leads to my ds whining and me snapping whereas on days where I am completely available we often have no problems at all).

It's a Delight-Filled Life.
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#505 of 1766 Old 09-26-2006, 03:42 PM
 
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you know what? It's the NOISE that sets me off. The noise invading my brain. My son screeches like a crow and has the loudest voice of any child i've ever heard. He gets great pleasure out of hitting and kicking, and climbs on me. I'm a very affectionate person with my kids, but i can't stand being used as a jungle gym and the constant whooping, screeching, laughing, crying, NOISE. I just want silence. My head hurts. I've been trying to put him to sleep for an hour, after nursing, lying down next to him, and couldn't read dd her books because he would NOT sleep. Then she was lying there trying to sleep and he went over (i was in between them) and hit her in the face. He used his hard skull to butt me while i'm lying there playing dead and climbed on me asking me for water, to pee, etc. I swore at him, screamed at him to shut the hell up, ranted for minutes about how I hate being a mother and told him I wanted to throw him out the window. I despise myself for saying these things. And more for feeling them. I feel so ashamed, but i can't stop having this kind of outburst. Now he's standing behind me on the chair trying to pull my shirt off and hitting me on the back. I just want to stuff him in a box and make him go away. I need my time alone now. Why can't i just enjoy him? It all feels like such a huge burden to me.
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#506 of 1766 Old 09-26-2006, 04:43 PM
 
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you know what? It's the NOISE that sets me off. The noise invading my brain. My son screeches like a crow and has the loudest voice of any child i've ever heard. He gets great pleasure out of hitting and kicking, and climbs on me. I'm a very affectionate person with my kids, but i can't stand being used as a jungle gym and the constant whooping, screeching, laughing, crying, NOISE. I just want silence. My head hurts. I've been trying to put him to sleep for an hour, after nursing, lying down next to him, and couldn't read dd her books because he would NOT sleep. Then she was lying there trying to sleep and he went over (i was in between them) and hit her in the face. He used his hard skull to butt me while i'm lying there playing dead and climbed on me asking me for water, to pee, etc. I swore at him, screamed at him to shut the hell up, ranted for minutes about how I hate being a mother and told him I wanted to throw him out the window. I despise myself for saying these things. And more for feeling them. I feel so ashamed, but i can't stop having this kind of outburst. Now he's standing behind me on the chair trying to pull my shirt off and hitting me on the back. I just want to stuff him in a box and make him go away. I need my time alone now. Why can't i just enjoy him? It all feels like such a huge burden to me.

You sound like a highly sensitive introvert. You are my dh? He can NOT physically tolerate incongruent, cacophony of loud and abrasive sounds. It is like nails on a chalk board and he wants to run screaming from the house. Screetching noises are the worst. The high pitched assault on his ears just makes him want to tear the head off anyone making the sound, it is a self-defense mechanism to MAKE THE SOUND STOP!! <sigh> He has to be outside when this happens, or close the door. He will also turn the music up louder and that helps some. Could you perhaps redirect the noise to a fast paced, loud music to overlay the sound with some rhythm and order?

My other suggestion is to increase your magnesium intake through supplementation. Here is a link about magnesium deficiency associated with auditory sensitivity. http://www.ctds.info/noise-sensitivity.html

We don't do bedtimes, so we just have wind-down activities without an expectation of ds "going to sleep" on a schedule. This alleviates a lot of tension too. I find that if I engage ds earlier in the evening, before we are both tapped out, means that he can be physical while he has more self-control and I am more tolerant. Perhaps planning some physical outlet for you all to do together could meet his need for physical stimulation, but in a more controlled fashion than climbing on you. Our son is very physical and physicality is a hot button issue to me when it isn't consensual. So we have a game of "pillow mash" where I'll create deep pressure contact with the pillow while he is laying on the couch or bed; wrapping him up in a blanket like a burrito and rolling him side to side; putting a pillow in my lap and playing "salt shaker" while I shake his legs up and down (he is laying on the couch or bed); or "choo-choo train" when I will move his legs back and forth like a peddling a bike; or he'll climb in a pillowcase and I'll lift him up and down. These type of physical impact activities meet both of our needs.

Mostly ds squeels when he is tired and the sound is soothing for him to *make*. He is just as apt to complain about *us* being too loud! But there is something orally satisfying to making repetitive sounds when tired. He has always been very oral. You might make it a game of parroting each other with more vocal control of making high pitched, then low pitched, louder than softer, etc. Call it 'singing sounds' or something, and say "let's go outside and 'sing sounds' at the moon together". Then you are not in a confined space with the random and assaulting sounds.

You sound like you need some alone time and if you meet ds's "together" times earlier, perhaps he could wind down more independently afterwards. Some people are extroverts, like myself, and we just like the engaged time and that creates a conflict of needs with introverts. If you can juggle some alone time early in the day, that might help come evening time. That is what my dh tries to do. Here is a link to the Highly Sensitive Person quiz: http://www.hsperson.com/pages/test.htm

HTH, Pat

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#507 of 1766 Old 09-26-2006, 07:02 PM
 
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We don't do bedtimes, so we just have wind-down activities without an expectation of ds "going to sleep" on a schedule. This alleviates a lot of tension too.
ditto at our house. there are certain things we do each night, but it's always a little different. if he hasn't had lots of outdoor time during the day, to run, climb, yell, et cetera, it's very obvious by about 8pm because he turns into a maniac.

sometimes, especially in winter, it's not always possible. those nights i have some calming herbs on hand to settle him down more gently. (you can buy mixtures at natural food stores. usually they have ingredients like chamomile, peppermint, catnip, kava, valerian, skullcap, et cetera.) you could also try a little celestial seasonings sleepytime tea, especially the "extra" one with valerian. it's super tasty and might relax you a bit too. you could make it a little tea party ritual together.

otherwise, i find that mostly it's me who needs to chill. so i drink my tea alone, then try to get in a better space to read stories with him or whatever he's needing. if i'm the slightest bit edgy before bed (or any other time actually), he senses it immediately and just feeds off it. that makes me more tweaky and creates a horrible vicious cycle. :
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#508 of 1766 Old 09-26-2006, 07:14 PM
 
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you know what? It's the NOISE that sets me off. The noise invading my brain. My son screeches like a crow and has the loudest voice of any child i've ever heard. He gets great pleasure out of hitting and kicking, and climbs on me. I'm a very affectionate person with my kids, but i can't stand being used as a jungle gym and the constant whooping, screeching, laughing, crying, NOISE. I just want silence. My head hurts.
Oooh, the noise and being climbed on a pawed at set me off too. I occasionally stuff tissues in my ears just to take the edge off of it, because sometimes the sound is just so piercing that my ears hurt. Been thinking about trying earplugs again. I have one who likes to climb on me, so I stand up a lot (so he can't). I love doing hugs, but I hate hate hate being climbed on. There are times when I'm feeling so overstimulated that I can't have little people on my lap, so I tell them I need a break, stand up to remove my lap, and try to get them busy doing something.

I loved a book called Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Fast, Too Tight: What To Do If You Are Sensory Defensive In An Overstimulating World. It has some practical tips for coping and a sensory diet, some of which I've used. Mostly I loved it because it so captured my experience, let me know I'm not crazy and not alone, and explained why things like too much noise or crowds or too much touch or just plain too much sensory input can make me so cranky and irrational.

For naps, my kids rest on the couch. My littlest one (2.5) sleeps. On days when they aren't in school my others do lay down and rest, because we all need the quiet time (especially mom). They are okay with this, so long as they can read books or color or something quiet (we keep it short, 20-30 minutes depending on them). My son's been resting this way since just before he turned 4, and sometimes he'll fall asleep. For bedtime, we start winding down with dimmed lights and soft music (and quiet activities) about 1.5 hours before we'd start doing the bedtime routine. This helps them fall asleep, as does a nice warm shower 1-2 hours before bed. And I totally have to be relaxed myself at nap or bedtime, not feeling edgy and desperate for them to sleep, b/c as others said they can sense it (or, more likely, I'm showing it really obviously), it puts them on edge, and they'll never fall asleep.
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#509 of 1766 Old 09-28-2006, 01:36 AM
 
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Reading this thread (all 26 pages!) has really helped. I too suffer from the RAGE demon. Although recently it's been more the irritated demon! There have been so many helpful ideas, some new, some I already knew but had forgotten to use recently, and I love the lettuce quote. It is my intention to pin a card above my bathroom mirror that just says "You are the Lettuce". It will make me smile to see it and hopefully be a gentle reminder for me. I feel immensely grateful that I don't need to unload at the moment, but it is so wonderful to know this thread ( and these mamas) are here when there is need. My circumstances are pretty similar to lots of pp, sahm with a teenager, 3yo, and 9mo, a dh who is wonderful in many ways but just not with it about the amount of continuous work it takes to run our home. I send hugs to all you mamas and hope today was a better day.
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#510 of 1766 Old 09-28-2006, 12:33 PM
 
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Ditto the noise thing over here. I'm a bit better with this now, but it used to make me crazy. Now, I'm better able (a little bit better, mind you) and trying to block it out. My DH always says that our older son has a voice modulation problem (there was a skit about this on SNL one time with Will Farrell playing this weird announcer guy who couldn't control his voice). We know he doesn't REALLY have a problem with this, so we just remind him, "Can you please turn the volume down?", or "We're right here, sweetie".
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