by Jon Biddle
I had a long session with my therapist Jane at the weekend. There seems to be aspects of the trauma that I experienced from childhood that is causing a number of maladies creating obstruction in the flow of all things that are creative and as a writer, I need that creative superhighway to keep the words coming.
So, here I was was thinking at the start of this therapy seven years ago that my issues were born out of time in the army. And although this is true, the majority of this trauma still sits in my inner child. So hold on here, you might need to hold onto something while say some stuff, but the main question is, if you have had a challenging childhood, and lets face it, most 70s kids are some of the most traumatised in the history of social services. And theres a solid rationale for this which is a separate blog post on another occasion. But first, let me ask you this?
What is your trauma type?
So recovering trauma types a split into four sub groups, fight, flight, freeze and fawn. Commonly known as the 4F’s.
Fight – narcissist, bully, autocratic and controlling.
Flight – obsessive, worrier, micromanage, bi-polar, driven.
Freeze – dissociative, isolated, hermit, attention deficit disorder.
Fawn – co-dependant, people-pleaser, slave, domestic violence sufferer.
Differences in the type of abuse you received in childhood which incidentally includes being spoilt. There are not many kids from my age group that received ‘good enough’ parenting, mine was far from it and that my response to external stressors and traumas follow a predictive path and those that are affected by childhood abuse – which is sexual, physical and emotional generally react with either one or two of the 4F’s. Which one categorises your trauma type?
So how does this effect me, and my creative process. My principle type is to freeze and then flight. I don’t like people, I like my own space yet I am fuelled by excitement, spontaneity but compelled by perfection. This makes me a bit of a paradox. My emotions push and pull against each other and I end up not getting much done. The trick is, to keep my emotional trauma in the flight column. This will allow me to be obsessive about my writing, panicky for the deadlines with my editor, be busy-aholic with the words that I write, micromanage the flow, be perfect in every way but manage the ADHD aspect with pharmaceuticals…this of course is a churlish play on the seriousness of my condition, because it is serious. The clinical factors makes the sufferer ambivalent to the condition which had huge effects on the psycho-social development into adult life. Yes, it effects intimacy, drug addiction, food, sex and booze.
I stopped drinking five years ago for this reason, and are still dealing with the food addiction. A clinical psychologist diagnosed me with binge eating disorder last year. Sex and love addiction is also something that I have had to deal with but that’s something I don’t really have the strength to be so open about just yet. On top of this, I have a propensity to think about suicide… a lot. And that is something that makes me sad because in my reality, I have the best life. Filled with love and abundance, so much love and so much abundance, it gives me strength to handle those voices.
I know I am floored, I know that these things lie in the recesses of my mind. The voices are constantly ebbing into my consciousness, this is something that the adult man in me is raging about. The neglectful way my own father abused me has left parts of my life in ruins. And that is of course if I let it.
A few years ago now, I said no more, re took the control back and although I have that control, there are bits that still need that therapising ‘smooth’ Jane does each time I reach for the phone or when I’m sat next to her Arga in her cottage. But I can see the light. Finally, the light is twinkling in the distance when over the past seven years there has been nothing but the darkness. I feel a sense of ease because of this.
And this is one of the reasons why I write. I can loose myself, I can quell those voices in my mind. Create stories and characters I would like to be or do. Using good over evil, light over darkness and none of this is more apparent in my first book Harvester. Alex, a woman who has spent most of her professional life having to fight the cancer of misogyny and now having to find a dark a twisted serial killer that is out of control. I think the narcissistic behaviour of my killer Dale Broc is an extension to the evil that pervaded my childhood. And of course, Alex will win over the darkness because she is light, she is good. Nonchalantly I had named my protagonist Alex Brown without releasing my wife Sam, her middle name is Alexandria and her maiden name is Brown. Sub consciously I think I created this character because Sam is my hero. She is the one person that has saved me and continues to do so every day and for that I am so, so grateful for, not to mention she’s sexy as hell to boot.
Check out the link below to my Amazon listing for Harvester, on top of all the complex psychology of my mind, it’s a great read.