Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

It is cold and lonely in here. Locked away, as easy as being thrown away. If there is a God why would he play such a sadistic trick on me… I am the puppet he abuses when he becomes filled with anger and Wrath.

My existence, the reality of my existence so short and insignificant. In the grand scheme of things my life is but a short dull blip when compared to the cosmos.

My life holds no meaning when compared to this. Turning inward I ponder if this is what my short insignificant meaningless existence is. Honestly is this all it fucking is? Will there be anything else… anything more to this shit show?

Here is the face of evil and part of an ongoing blog series recounting the horrible story.

https://coms.doc.state.mn.us/publicviewer/OffenderDetails/Index/254746/Search

 

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I am going to briefly explain three scenarios, as the reader it’s important to remain in the logical mind using the facts to answer a question regarding moral and ethical decision making. There are numerous philosophical doctrines one can use to aid them in making ethical decisions. In order to keep this as simplistic as possible I am going to use Kant’s categorical imperative as our moral compass. When faced with a moral or ethical dilemma is the answer as black and white as in Kant’s categorical imperative, or does morality exist in a subjectively grey area determined by praxeology? 

Let’s examine three ethical dilemmas:

A.) Stealing

B.) Lying 

C.) Murder

I know there are multiple facets and complexitys to Immanuel Kant’s categorical imperative, but to keep it simple let’s focus on the question is it ok for someone to steal, lie, or murder you? I imagine our answer would be no, therefore stealing, lying, and murder is universally wrong. In its simplicity there are no variables to alter or justify this outcome. 

When looking at these dilemmas using decision analysis any variable added creates an action axiom where “If a condition holds, then the following should be done.” Decision analysis is based on the maximum expected utility (MEU) action axiom. The action-axiom is the basis of praxeology, and it is the basic proposition that all humans purposefully utilize means over a period of time in order to achieve desired ends. 

Using these two options is morality as black and white as Kant’s categorical imperative, or is it possible that all moral and ethical decisions exist in a grey area where the difference between right and wrong is subjective depending on the situation. Let’s see what happens when variables are added to our three examples.

  • A.) Stealing in order to feed your family. In this scenario does the categorical imperative trump the action axiom?
  • B.) Your partner asks you if their outfit makes them look fat. Are you morally obligated to answer “yes” or would you use praxeology to determine your answer.
  • C.) Due to the nature and complexity of our final example it requires more detailed information than the other two. 

    I apologize if the details are vague so try to stay with me in your logical mind looking at just the facts. 

    Gary is an “associate” of an organized crime syndicate. Gary did or didn’t do something bad enough to warrent a $5k contract on his life. The moment it was decided Gary had to go his fate has been sealed and Gary is a Deadman walking. His end is as unavoidable as our own, so does the means to his end matter? I am going to use a similar variable as the first scenario. What if the future well being of your family is so bleak you are unable to even meet any of Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs.

     The only option in front of you is to accept the 5k and murder Gary. You are just the means to his end, if you didn’t do it someone else would. We can deduce that Gary willing chose to be a part of a criminal organization, therefore accepted the risks associated with his line or work. Gary’s life ended long before the trigger was pulled. Despite my foggy mind and poorly explained variables, where do you stand when faced with being the means to end an already condemned man’s life to save your family.

    It’s been awhile since I wrote Graceful Dancing, ideally I would like to say my life has improved, unfortunately logic proves in an ideal reality the word or concept of ideal wouldn’t exist. Therefore ideally is linguistically a lie wrapped in other linguistic lies such as hope or faith. We need to find some comfort no matter how delusional in order to cope with the reality in which we live.

    Reality is a ruthless bitch who shows no mercy to the inhabitants of our vast universe. For the millions of people who are swollowed by reality there are millions who overcome and thrive. I have attempted to thrive in the reality I exist, but have been fractured within her madness. The most recent is being evicted, I am unsure how to make it through this one.

    Those of you who have been reading my words know the various dreams and aspirations I have had, unfortunately you know I failed. Ever since chaos invaded my only safe place my life has unraveled and shattered into a million pieces. I still hold onto delusional dreams of being more than I am. It’s the only beacon of light in a world of darkness. Throughout the nightmares, within fractured chaos something has slowly emerged into my dream becoming true.

    I have become codependent on this dream. The website is almost up. I will be starting a new blog on WordPress and another on YouTube. Once the website is up the printing options available will increase ten fold. But it still needs to go live which who knows if that will happen. My urgency to obtain curency is my top priority. I have turned to Facebook and offering coupon codes for those who like my page to get coupons for 50% to 75% off the entire store. Desperate times my friends.. for those of you who suffer subscribe to this blog I will cross post for awhile until everyone has subscribed to the new blog.

    I have to try to keep out of the darkness. I have been to the hospital far to many times this year.

    Graceful Dancing

    Posted: May 16, 2015 in Absolute Truth, Abuse, Aging, America, Anxiety, Arguments, Atheism, Atheist, Bi-Polar, Bible, Blog, Blogging, Books, Brainwashed, Change, Charity, Charity Foundations, Christianity, Church, Community, Confessions, Coping, Corporate Culture, Crisis, Crooked Politicians, Culture, Death, Debates, Depression, Diary, Dilemma, Dreams, Duty of Care, Dying, Elderly, Emotional Abuse, Epic Battle, Ethics, Evil, Faith, Family, Fear, Forgiveness, God, Good, Good-byes, Greed, Grief, Haile Selassie, Insanity, Inside My Mind, Jesus, Journal, Lies and broken promises, Life, Lists, Living in fear, Logic, Love, Mania, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Minnesota, Misc, miscellaneous, Moral Theories, Morals, Motivation, Mourning, Nursing Homes, Opinion, Pain, Personal, Philosophy, Politics, Prayers, Progress, Psychosis, Quotes, Random, Random Thoughts, Rants, Reform, Rejection, Rights, Sadness, Self-esteem, Self-Help, Self-image, Social Debates, Social Injustices, Society, Sorrow, Spirituality, Stress, Suffering, Suicide, Suicide Note, The Bible, The Bucket List Foundation, The Philosophy of Quotes, Theology, TheRandomArtist, Thoughts, Treatment, Uncategorized, Unity, Verbal Abuse, Work, Work Environment, Writing
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    The choice of letting go and saying goodbye is never easy, yet the decision to hold on is even harder. I have let go of hopes, dreams, relationships, redemption and written my goodbyes many times in the past, but every morning I regret my choices and my decisions to hold on… This was the beginning of the post I was working on last Saturday, what was to follow was going to be my final words then swallow every bit of medication I had and finally be at peace. Instead I ended up in the psych ward at Abbot where I stayed until yesterday against my doctors and others advice. I didn’t see the point in staying, all they did was drug me to the point where all I could do was sleep. I was at a crossroads where I knew whether I chose to stay or go I was leaving in worse shape when wen I went in. When I walked out of the hospital and reality came crashing down on me I knew right then and there that I fucked up choosing to go to begin with, yet again regretting my decision to hold on. So I am back where I started but with a bit more inner strength then I had before because I received a mental vacation, but seriously how long will that last? The answer will come in the next week or so as I sit back and see how everything plays out between my job, dream, finances, and relationships. I feel I am at the point where depending on how these things play out will determine my future.

    My life is riddled with mistakes, and regrets each one adding to the greater mound of shit called life. At this moment three key things come to mind, keep in mind this is not in chronological order of importance.

    1. Failing at fixing all the problems at the nursing home I work at to improve the quality of life of the residents I have grown to care for so deeply.
    2. Giving up on my dreams of becoming a writer or an artist.
    3. Not finding redemption for the countless number of lives I have destroyed in my 35 years on this earth.
    4. Not following through with shit on November 26th.

    I think what it comes down to is acceptance. I need to accept that I won’t ever be more than I am right now. I have to finally accept I won’t ever be able to help the residents where I work. I don’t know what’s worse giving up on my dreams or trying to redeem myself by helping people just like me who can’t help themselves. I have done shitty things; I have poisoned and hurt everyone and everything I have ever touched. Many of my poems touch on this concept of being a “virus.”

    For over six years I have worked so hard to make up for all the pain and suffering I have caused by reducing the pain and suffering the residents at the nursing home I work for by the hands and decisions of the very same people who are supposed to care for and safe guard these residents. There are many good hearted people whom I work with who carry this burden of failure, if any of them are reading this they know the deep sorrow and feeling of helplessness of not being able to give these guys the proper quality of life they deserve.

    I have been in business with and covered up things for “business associates” who wouldn’t hesitate putting a bullet in your head, but being involved with and covering up for an employer who is a non-profit and allows vulnerable adults and employees to be harassed mistreated and discriminated against is far worse in my eyes. There are many people at the nursing home I work at who see the same things I see but do not act; as Haile Selassie so eloquently put it

    Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph.”

    All of the people involved in my past life and unfortunately as of late too much of my current life chose “the life” and in the end we all end up in one of two places, we deserve whatever end to our means no matter how horrific or painful. Our residents on the other hand do not deserve the means that transpire until their end comes.

    This is my apology to the residents that have come and gone who failed to receive the proper quality of life they deserved. I am sorry that I can no longer continue to fight for the change needed, it is destroying me. My old associates showed more mercy delivering people to their end, than the people I work for now. The people employed by this company who care are used and pushed until they break while the predators are allowed to continue to prey.

    Non-profits are not supposed to be run like a criminal organization where fear and intimidation rule. Non-profits are supposed to be built upon something called “Duty of care.” If any one of the “criminals” who work at this nursing home is reading this let me define what duty of care means.

    “Duty of care is the moral and legal obligation to attend to the safety and wellbeing of those they serve, those who work for them and others who come into contact with their operations.”

    Now to wrap things up there may be some people who do not understand what the title of this entry has to do with the content. Below is a Youtube link of Justin Furstenfeld performing the song “Graceful Dancing.” After hearing his introduction to this powerful song, and seeing the familiar emotions during his performance I decided to check myself into the hospital which drastically changed the content of this post. For that I thank the artist and the person who posted this video.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCFpgfvPGZo&list=PLIWCEQoVmfdHIakN42xTrXYjPnE6I3EHB&index=55

     

     

    Decaying Faces

    Decaying faces

    Buried in decaying places

    Chasing dreams in empty spaces

    Stench of death embraces

    That which the light erases

    Displaying those decaying faces

    Replacing the traces

    Of those decaying places

    Those rearranged decaying faces

    Lost alone in decaying places

    Those dreams you chased in empty spaces

    Reluctant to believe in warm embraces

    Popping pills to find something that erases

    A lonely walk that leaves no traces

    The decay displacing those funny faces

    Oddly drawn to those dark places

    Where decaying faces erase the traces

    Of empty spaces

    Where death embraces

    The places and empty spaces

    Where light erases

    The truth behind the decaying faces

    Faces changing places

    The memories it erases

    Funny faces

    Empty spaces

    Decaying faces

    Hidden in decaying places

    Embracing those empty spaces

    Erasing the traces of happy faces

    By: TimLundmark

     

    I enjoy philosophical riddles, and I spend far too less time working on them. The reasons do not matter. I am confronted with one riddle in particular day in and day out… Why have I not or cannot kill myself?

    I have gone through my fair share of suffering, and for most of my life battled with the will and desire to no longer be alive. I have many times and still want to die. I do not want to exist. So why at this moment with how I feel and have felt I must ask myself. Why am I breathing and writing this?

    This has been a philosophical puzzle that has plagued and tortured me. I have come up with many theories, reasons, and excuses for why I have not.

    No point in running the list. What I came up with and I feel so blind for not figuring this out. Its our primal directive to survive. Its ingrained within us and drives everything. This directive is so powerful that I cannot overcome or find the courage to end my suffering.

    To me logic and reason would dictate that ending suffering is the only thing that makes sense. Every other theory I have ever had about why I am still alive stems from this roadblock.

    How can this override clear logic and reason of not wanting to suffer? How can this seed allow us to self deceive ourselves against the logical course of action. How and at what point can this will be broken down?

    “Human beings must be known to be loved; but Divine beings must be loved to be known.”
    Blaise Pascal

    Imagine if society as we know it were to completely crumble, ravaged with war, along with our complete loss of technology. Countries would soon begin to crumble; social unrest would cause unimaginable destruction. Lets take our imagination exercise further; during all of this chaos and destruction, only 5-10% of the human population survived. All technology and anything related to it is gone, and very few things such as books, paintings, or structures remain. Being resilient creatures it is only logical mankind will slowly start to re-build.

    Everything we know today would be a distant memory. Soon future generations would have no idea what “The Mona Lisa” looked like, or in some cases didn’t even know it had existed. Now imagine if the Bible and all other religious scriptures had been destroyed in the mayhem. With every passing generation the concept of religion as we know it today would have all but disappeared. It would be foolish not to factor in the 5-10% of those who survived, for arguments sake lets say there was no one dominant believe system among the survivors. The people who survived each carried with them one of our many different theological beliefs, but no religious doctrine survived.

    Let us continue down this rabbit hole of imagination and say a few Greek Mythology books survived the downfall of man (Yes I am aware this can be considered theology, but I include it only because unfortunately it has been downgraded to “mythology”.) Future generations would logically begin to worship Zeus, and the many other Gods behind said “mythology” and believe this to be religious fact. Even if these books did not exist it is possible for a new generation to create a completely different religion based on the remnants from the downfall. Of course these remnants would be added to with stories passed down from generation to generation.

    I feel it is impossible to have a society without the driving force of religion; whether it is to calm fears or to control the population. Religion although perverted and corrupt is a necessity; eventually new religions would be formed to meet these needs. Imagine if the book “Moby Dick” survived the collapse of man. All it would take is one charismatic individual to start preaching the “religious” lessons contained in this book, and just like that a new religion is born. In time as other books are collected they are added to the “Holy Scripture.” Let’s say “Huckleberry Finn,” “Hamlet,” and “The Lord of the Rings” also survived. These various works of fiction are then woven together in a collection of stories to form a new Bible, and out they go to preach the Word, promising life hereafter in Middle Earth.

    People are hardwired to need religion in their life, if this were not the case religion would have died out long ago as man discovered science and logic, because of this primal hardwiring they would latch onto this with all their might, replacing, refuting, and stumping scientific and logical advancements. I am sure whoever put this “Bible” together would take some liberties and add their own material just like the Catholics did when choosing which books to include in the Bible. This new congregation would set out to spread the gospels of William Shakespeare, J.R.R. Tolkien, Mark Twain, and Herman Melville, murdering all those who believed differently then they do. In time this religion and its created deities would become reality.

    Now here is my question. If all of these things were to actually happened, then does the God of the Bible now cease to exist? If no one knew what a Bible even was, would the God of the Bible come down and start interacting with humans to show us he still existed? Although God made a promise he would never do it again, would he burn then flood the entire world only leaving one family to partake in incest to rebuild the world? If we look at history there have been many different religions that people have blindly followed. As time passed newer, cooler, more convenient, and better suited religions for social control became dominant. Causing all of the long forgotten deities (sorry Zeus) to be left behind and forgotten.   

    If you look out into emptiness, your world will become empty. If you look at the blessings, your life will be blessed.

    I was reading some uplifting comments a few friends made about one of my recent drawings on Facebook. Despite everything I couldn’t help but smile, and feel good about myself. I started to reflect on how much my life has changed since I reactivated my Facebook account. It didn’t take long to reach the conclusion that this decision literally saved my life. It’s not actually FB that did the saving; it’s the angels I discovered within and the miracles they performed who deserve the credit. I would not be where I am today if it were not for some very special people on Facebook, because I am not sure their feelings on this matter I will not use any names, but I do hope if you are reading this you know this is dedicated to you.

    I was trying to cope with a major crisis, directly caused by the only tangible person in my support system. The only friend I had to lean on lives in Arizona, which made regular communication difficult.  I felt completely isolated and alone. Prior to reactivating my FB account I took a huge leap of social faith, and started opening up to some people at work. Words cannot even describe how awkward and scary this was for me, hell half the time after a conversation I felt like I had just run an emotional mile. I would sit back just praying I didn’t ramble on, and make a complete fool out of myself. If it were not for my newly formed friendships at work, I would have never rediscovered my value and self-worth as a person. They showed me, that with a strong support group I could get through this crisis. They encouraged me to reactivate my FB account to see if I could continue to build on this newly formed foundation. I want to say thank you, for taking the time to listen, and for being nonjudgmental when I couldn’t hold it together anymore and just sobbed.

    To be honest I wasn’t expecting anything to happen once I reactivated my account. I was never the social butterfly, so I was confident there would be no parade welcoming me back into the world. I decided I was going to approach FB the same way I approach my writing…with honesty. I started posting about my chaotic life and how I was doing. I included links to my blog, and posted pictures of my drawings. This terrified me! I was showing the real me, not the fool who wears masks just to be accepted. I was symbolically streaking naked across the FB landscape exposing myself for all to see.

    I never imagined the outcome would be discovering I had friends that care about me. Even though I have not spoken to or seen them in ages, they made it clear they were here for me. I cannot describe this unfamiliar feeling, and how difficult it is for me to believe I am not alone. Between work, and now FB I have been more social in the last month than I have been in fifteen years.

    I don’t think people ever truly realize the impact they have on others. Everyone I have had the honor and privilege of communicating with has made a tremendous impact on my life. During one conversation I learned there are actually woman out there who love comics as much as I do, and in another I had an amazing therapeutic conversation with a complete stranger who happened to be a Christian. What made it beautiful is we were on completely different belief spectrum’s, yet clicked. These are just two examples; I get excited and look forward to every future conversations.

    Everyday I have certain things that I say over and over again to try and stay positive and one of them is this “The part of you that thrives is the part you feed the most.” I owe so much to those who take the time to comment on my art. I don’t think they realize the impact their words have on me, let alone the added impact of who these words are coming from. Sometimes the person making the comment means more than and enhances the comment itself.

    Last Thursday I can honestly say, I experienced true hopelessness. I sincerely could not tell you the last time I was in so much emotional pain. I had given up, and I was searching for viable reasons for why I shouldn’t. I know I said I wasn’t going to mention names, but if it were not for Shawn Johnson I honestly don’t think I would be here today. All of this pain and hopelessness that was eating away at me; he took that shit away and replaced it with hope. There is no way I can repay you; besides letting you know you have a brother for life.

    I don’t believe in miracles or angels, but I am at an impasse trying to find the proper definition to explain these two concepts. I don’t know any other way to describe what has happened since I have opened myself up to friends at work and those on FB besides anything less than a miracle. The only word or concept I can think of to call those of you who are here for me, even in the smallest of ways; are angels.

    Thank you.

    I have been receiving valued advice on how I should be careful what I write considering everything that is going on. I cannot even keep track, of how many times in the past this same advice has been given to me. I wasn’t able to follow it then, and I can’t follow it now. I have never understood the point of writing poetry or music just for the sake of it. Art in any form is meant to be personal and hold personal meaning, this is how art manifests itself into a ting of beauty. I won’t write unless the very essence of who I am, and how I feel can bleed out into my words, if I do anything less than this I am rejecting my true self. Being rejected by others is horrible enough, but if you reject who you really are you will spend the rest of your life living amongst the chameleons and the fools who hide behind masks and perceived social norms.

    I have lived my entire life as a chameleon, and played the fool behind the mask. I had difficulty socializing with my peers, so I had to figure out who I needed to be in order for them to accept me. Living my entire life in this manner, can I honestly say I know who I REALLY am? The person I feel I am is the person I have been told I am over and over again. This only reinforces my chameleon colors, and motivates me to build better masks. I cannot stand the reflection of the man of clay you shaped to feel worthless. I know those who are saying these are victim statements, which just by saying such a thing does not validate the individuals real feelings.

    The only time I have ever felt safe and free enough to be the real me is when I write. It is therapeutic to write books and post honesty in its purist form for the world to see. The thought of altering the only real honesty and relationship I have in my life, because of the fear of my soon to be ex-wife using my words against me, is just reinforcing the very self-hatred I am trying to overcome. If a judge were to decide that my children shouldn’t be with me because of who I really am, than I obviously have no business being a parent. I do not fear this will be the outcome.

    I consider anything I write to be confessional in nature. I am always honest and true to myself regardless of any criticisms or judgments I may receive. I have paid a regrettable price for things I have written in the past. I haven’t spoken to my father in over four years for many reasons, but a recurring reason was a poem I wrote in one of my books. This in of itself sucks, but I feel the outcome was inevitable regardless. My biggest regret is the hurt, pain, and rift I created in regards to a family reunion. I felt hurt and rejected by my family for showing the real me, but in reality it was how I reacted to those feelings instead of thinking like a logical adult I acted like a child. This only made the situation worse and resulted in hurting the ones who were actually supporting me. Although it has taken some time it is one of those valuable life lessons I have learned about taking real ownership for my actions without the use of the word “but”.

    The only true negative about such pure honesty is knowing I will be single for the remainder of my years.

    What We Learn From Failed Relationships

    Posted: May 27, 2014 in Absolute Truth, Abuse, Anxiety, Arguments, Blog, Blogging, Change, Childhood, Children, Coping, Crisis, Culture, Dating, Debates, Depression, Diary, Dilemma, Divorce, Dreams, Emotional Abuse, Ethics, Evil, Faith, Family, Fatherhood, Fear, Forgiveness, Freedom, Fun, Greed, Grief, Growing up in abusive homes, Health, Humor, Inside My Mind, Journal, Kids, Learning, Lies and broken promises, Life, Lists, Living Your Dream, Logic, Love, Lust, Marriage, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Misc, miscellaneous, Moral Theories, Morals, Motivation, Mourning, NA, Opinion, Pain, Parent, Parenting, Personal, Philosophy, Poems, Poetry, Published Author, Quotes, Random, Random Thoughts, Rants, Rejection, Relationship Issues, Relationships, Sadness, Self-esteem, Self-Help, Self-image, Social Anxiety, Social Debates, Society, Sorrow, Spirituality, Stress, Suffering, The Invention of Lying, The Philosophy of Lyrics, The Philosophy of Quotes, Things That Give Me Anxiety, Thoughts, Top Ten Lists, Uncategorized, Unity, Verbal Abuse, Writing
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    I would first like to start off by thanking all of my readers and subscribers. I learned today; I have readers from 61 different countries. I think that’s pretty bad ass. I am aware that my readership grew from the topics of philosophy, theology, and madness. So bear with me as I stray a bit from those topics. Today I would like to release that which has been permeating in my mind. I would like ponder for a moment the importance of learning from our mistakes in a failed relationship. Through all of this I am trying to maintain a positive attitude and outlook. So here we go.

    The one thing I can say with out a doubt is I am far from sainthood. I have made my more than my fair share of mistakes, and bad decisions which played a role in the overall destruction of my marriage. I am ashamed and consumed with intense guilt because of this. This combined with my wife’s lies, and infidelity has allowed me to see the light. I am sure I could write a 200 page paper on this topic, but I will try to keep this short and sweet.

    There are 10 main things I have learned in my failed marriage. Now mind you there are far more than 10, but as I said this is not a 200 page dissertation on my failed marriage. I will do my best to not place blame, because it doesn’t do anyone any good. Some things on this list will undoubtedly overlap, even though this is the case I feel each one deserves to be mentioned. Without further ado here is my list of 10 things I learned from my failed marriage.

    1. Never Lie: I did a lot of research after I found out about what my wife did. I learned that in humans our first response when we know we have done something wrong, that will ultimately lead to a negative outcome our immediate response is to lie. We do this for two reasons one we want to avoid conflict, and two we don’t want to get in trouble. Since I am a proponent of the tabula rasa theory (mind being born as a blank slate.) I feel this is a trait we learn as children, which carries over into adulthood. Lying to your partner no matter how small is a terrible idea. We can overcome this childish trait, by knowing our partner as well as ourselves, focus on understanding and know that mistakes are actually learning opportunities.
    2. Never Cheat: I think this one doesn’t need further explanation. It’s a painful and shitty thing to do to those we love. Even if (insert some attractive famous person) wanted to be with you, nothing is worth hurting the one you love.
    3. Trust: it should go without saying that if the two things listed above are followed then trust shouldn’t be an issue. Unfortunately we all carry the baggage of past hurt, what we need to realize is who ever we are with now is not the person who caused us hurt in the past. I would imagine it would be a good idea to be open and honest about these past hurts. A relationship that is not built on trust is like trying to build a house of cards on a windy day, neither of these two examples will be successful. The perfect advice one can give in fostering trust in a relationship is this; if you would not say or do something if your partner was there with you, then you definitely shouldn’t do it.
    4. Accept and Love Each Other For All Their Good Qualities, As Well As Their Flaws: let’s admit it people, no one is perfect, and those who claim to be are probably the most screwed up of them all. Initially I am sure that we all fall in love with our mates good qualities. During the “courting” or “honeymoon” phase of a relationship, it is kind of like interviewing for a job, you really are not being completely honest your just trying to get the “job.” As the relationship progresses and begins to become serious is usually when we start to notice each others flaws. The important thing is that we learn to love that person regardless of their flaws. In fact I believe our flaws can become the most exciting part of a relationship. When you love the good qualities along with the flaws you know you have found true love; when everything seems to fit like a glove.
    5. Never Put Your Partner Down and Break Their Will: this topic has a lot to do with item number four. There are just two things I would like to add. The first is from an article by John Gottman, PhD in an article titled “4 Signs of A Troubled Marriage” Here is the link.http://affiliatedpsychologicalservices.com/4-signs-of-a-troubled-marriage/ Gottman talks about “The Four Horsemen of The Apocalypse” which are clear signs you are headed for a divorce. The first two he brings up is “Criticism” and “Contempt.” If anyone out there grew up in an abusive home where as a child you were faced with these two horsemen, having to deal with such things in a marriage is a key ingredient in a divorce. If you tell someone something negative about them enough times, with the right amount of nastiness it is only natural the other party will believe what they are being told, and inevitable this is who they will see when they look into the mirror. I don’t think people are aware of how serious the long term damage can be. My second point comes from a line from the song “Weight of The World” by Blue October. “Don’t bother changing things that won’t give into changing.” It is one thing to help your partner grow and become the best person they can be, but in the process don’t try to change who they are inside. If you are hell bent on trying to force someone to change, there is always medication. If this is your goal please take to heart one of my quotes “Medication is to fix the people we don’t like.” If you feel you need to medicate your partner, it’s time to call it quits.
    6. Freedom: As your relationship grows, it is imperative that you do not take away your partners freedom. When I say freedom I am not referring to allowing your partner to go out all the time neglecting the relationship, and engaging in behaviors which fall into the first three categories I listed. When I say freedom, I say that it is clearly healthy to share and be with each other, but it is also healthy to have a respectful life outside of the relationship. I have made this deadly mistake in one of my relationships, and I have now been on the receiving end of how damaging smothering and isolating your partner can be. If your relationship is built on a strong foundation of trust and respect this should be something you encourage each other to do. I have always admired the relationship between my best friend of 26 years and his lovely wife. I will not mention names, but I truly hope one day I can figure out whatever their secret is, and apply it to my future relationships. I am going to encourage them to write a book.
    7. Support Their Dreams: There is nothing more precious and sacred than some ones hopes and dreams. For some our dreams appear to us when we are young, others do not fully realize their dreams until they discover who they are. When I was young I had the normal boyhood dreams to become a professional football or baseball player, unfortunately like normal boys those dreams were not meant to be. Beyond those two options, I really didn’t have anything else that drove or inspired me, until the 5th grade. Long story short I ended up doing many writing assignments and I remember my teacher signing my year book, saying she could one day see something I have written being published. I was not a very well behaved child, so positive reinforcement from the teachers I tormented was rare, but from that moment my dream changed. I wanted to become a professional writer. As I grew older I held onto this dream, and wrote in private. I never thought anything I would write would be read let alone published. Again long story short one of my poetry books was published, I started this blog, wrote two children’s books, and two other poetry books. Needless to say this was the greatest I had ever felt about myself, because I accomplished something I never thought I could… my dream. I did not receive support from my partner, and in fact was highly put down and discouraged from continuing to write, until finally I had no option but to stop writing. The details behind this are not important at this moment.
    8. Open & Honest Communication: You would think this is a no brainier, but for my marriage and I would imagine many others this proved to be too challenging to overcome and sowed the seeds to our divorce. I feel if you have all seven of these things listed above then number eight would be a given, but if you take out one or two of the above it makes communication a challenge. I avoided and ran away from open and honest communication. I could make a laundry list for why, but this is already becoming too long of a post. Mainly I was afraid to honestly look in the mirror, I was scared I was going to receive an unhealthy dose of items four and five. Regardless of those reasons it is on me for failing in this aspect of our marriage. I need to take ownership for this, and like everything listed learn to not make the same mistakes. It is very difficult and challenging for me to be social, and communicate even with those closest to me. I know this is something I need to work on, but what always ends up playing over and over in my mind is the Pink Floyd lyrics from the song “The Final Cut” which I will add at the end.
    9. Be A Selfless Lover: This is actually one area where I have and feel the most accomplished. I felt I needed to add this, because in my experience men in general put their intimacy needs, or the final “outcome” before their partners. I will not go into detail in case my mom is reading this, but as men our primary focus and goal when it comes to being intimate is placing our partners needs before ourselves. Any man can do his business and be on his way, but this is a man who has failed. When it comes to intimacy your only goal and desire should be the feelings and ultimate “outcome” of your partners needs. Everything else should be secondary.
    10. Find Your Genuine Light: Tomorrow I am going to post a quick poem describing the meaning behind this comment. I do not believe in soul mates. I do not believe there is only one true love for everyone. I believe for everyone, there exists many individuals who could be considered your genuine light. I believe they are rare, but they are out there. My advice is if you feel you are holding your genuine light, don’t let them slip away because you cannot be certain another one will come around to light up your life.

     

    “And if I show you my dark side
    Will you still hold me tonight?
    And if I open my heart to you
    And show you my weak side
    What would you do?
    Would you sell your story to Rolling Stone?
    Would you take the children away
    And leave me alone?
    And smile in reassurance
    As you whisper down the phone?
    Would you send me packing?
    Or would you take me home?”

    Pink Floyd

    These lyrics describe perfectly why it is so difficult for me to open up to people, which hinders my ability to effectively communicate.