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CariadsCarrot

weakness

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Aren't guys supposed to be strong?

I can't keep myself and those I care for safe

I want to be this white knight...this great defender

...but I am nothing.

Gabe

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Dude, there's no way you could be nothing. The TG/TS/CD/Androgyne haters are nothing, but not you. I know I don't really know you, but you seem to under estimate ur self. I know for a fact that u are/were a big help to me. :)

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You are strong.

You underestimate your strength.

Gabe, some circumstances call for different strength when one is unable to prevent bad things.

I don't know the circumstances, but I know you have a great strength...

Please don't sell yourself short.

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Gabe it isn't about physical strength. Once in cave man days maybe it was. And on the frontiers, but those days are long over. Many of the greatest and most infulential men of our times have not been physically strong men but they were mental giants. Do you remember that one of the American Presidents-who many considered saved our country during the Great Depression and through World War II, was a polio survivor and confined to a wheel chair. Seriously debilitated at times. His name was Franklin Delano Roosevelt and he is the only president to ever serve 4 terms.

Appearance to the contrary, John Kennedy suffered from a serious back injury that severely limited his movements as well as a host of illnesses , some very serious. He took testosterone the entire time he was in office in order to have the strength to work.

There are hundreds of other examples.Like Stephen Hawking. Or even Christopher Reeve who was so severely debilitated by his broken neck but lived a life that made a difference for other quadraplegics and accomplished amazing things for people with spinal cord injuries

These are American men because they are the ones I am familiar with. I am sure there are many examples around you as well

Are these men nothing? Not one could have defended themselves or anyone else physically, yet they changed the world.

They had one thing in common. They refused to focus on what they couldn't do and instead set out to prove what they could.

You are an amazing man. When you reach for your real strengths and abilities you may be amazed at what you CAN do.

Johnny

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Gabe,

You and I have talked about this before. I have shared with you that I often feel this way, especially right now. I want to be in control and strong and I want to feel stable and provide for myself and those I care about. And when the world just keeps throwing those challenges, it is hard on our self-esteem. I know exactly how you feel.

But look at what we have survived and what we have done for those who we love. The fact that we are still standing despite the obstacles we face and the fact that we have not compromised our integrity in a world that does not place financial value on men like us is our triumph.

I am not dismissing your feelings, I am asking you to express them and let your family at Laura's be here for you. I know you want to be strong and you have Cariad and the kids but there are times you can come to any of us, and let us allow you that space to rest, to yell to just be. Especially reach out to us men and let us remind you of the Gabe we admire and respect.

My brother, you are always welcome to lean on me.

Hugs,

John

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Gabe there is nothing weak about you.

You, John, and Johnny are three of the finest men I have known in my life and represent everything a true man should be.

As someone who had to pretend for so many years I had a lot of time to stand on the outside of that circle and watch and study what so many males thought they had to act like and it was always that alpha self importance. Not a lot of men I know can show that caring side that must be there for a true protector.

And remember Gabe, that there are a lot of women here who are ready to try and provide encouragement and nurturing when you need it.

Mia

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Thank you Mia. I agree about Johnny and Gabe and me. Yes, in this case, I am not being modest LOL.

As for the women here and the nurturing and encouragement you provide, you all already know how I feel about you :)

John

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Rowan, thank you mate. I needed to hear that right now.

Maria, thank you. Sometimes I don't feel like I have strength of any kind. I feel like I am spending my whole life with no ability other than to keep picking up the pieces of things I was helpless against, and even in that I feel so insufficient.

Johnny, thank you. I can't put into words but...thank you. I want to have that kind of strength.

John, thank you my brother. I know that you understand. You don't know what your support means to me. I need to see that Gabe that you and others here see because 99% of the time all I can see is what I've been told and shown that I am for most of my life by so many people...a weak pathetic despicable creature that's only good to be used and disposed of.

Yes we have survived and we will keep on surviving.

Mia, thank you. I wish I could know what you see and feel worthy to be put in that sentence along with John and Johnny. They are amazing guys and knowing them has taught me to be able to accept my own manhood and not be afraid of it. I feel more like a sad little boy trying to be a grown up and failing miserably.

I care...yes I care so much. Is it really enough?

Thank you for being one of those wonderful nurturing women.

For what feels like the millionth time in my life I've found myself yet again in an unhealthy place. I'm seeing people being victimised and I want to speak out but I know it will only achieve getting me ostracised from the group and unable to help people there any more so I'm just quietly trying to be there for people. It doesn't feel enough. Being there is also scaring me because it's bringing up memories for me of times in the past when I've been victimised in a similar way. I know it's only luck that I have stayed under the radar of the person doing the victimising so far and I don't know if I can face going through it again.

My family and I are also living in a bad place. I've lived with what we live with here all my life. Actually, although it's bad at times it's far better than it's ever been for me before. I know though that it's limiting me from growing and healing from my past. I also watch the effect it has on Cariad. Sometimes all I can do is comfort her when she's in tears or fuming with frustration and anger. It's also not healthy for our kids to be in this environment even though they are not actually getting hurt in the way that Cariad and I are.

I'm trying to get us out of here to a home of our own where we can limit our contact with the emotional abuse and manipulation but it's too slow and the control is not in my hands.

I rescued Cariad from having to live in a dangerous place before and where we live now IS better than where she was then but I want to do it again now but this time I don't have the tools and have to wait at the mercy of other peoples decisions and provision.

Cariad isn't well at the moment either and I want to be physically strong enough to be able to care for her but instead she is still having to care for me with my disabilities. I try to limit what she has to do for me to the absolute minimum and I give her all the help and comfort I can and care for her in the little ways that I am capable of doing but it's not enough. I feel guilty.

I also feel like I'm drowning in memories and their effects at the moment. I know I have come a long way but every way I look something seems to trigger flashbacks. I go through times like this. I know I will have another break from it for a while again at some point and I know that in reality I am moving forward as I process the memories and address the effects of my past but they are effecting me being able to function as the person I want to be at times and I don't have patience for my weakness. I feel that I should be over it all by now even though logically I know some of it is quite recent.

I'm scared.

I feel so broken sometimes.

I feel that I shouldn't be being so vulnerable or complaining. Sorry

Gabe

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Gabe,

This is the first time I have ventured into this forum. I had to for you. It isn't easy to be a man who cares, a man who wants to protect, a man who sees others suffering yet at times feel powerless and this isn't about what you are doing or not; this is about society.

There is so much more I can say but I am going to in a PM.

One of the things I had to learn was that while I could be the protector and I could love unconditionally; I had to allow a woman to care back for me. It isn't easy but it is fair. We expect women to allow us to be there for them. It works both ways. You have been through what no one should. People who share in this forum did nothing wrong. The weak are those who prey; strong are those who survive and retain their capacity to love.

You are doing the best you can for yourself, Cariad and the kids. Don't allow the weakness and flaws of an unjust society impact your self-esteem. Everything I say to you are words I say to myself. To stay strong in this economy; to believe when those voices told you otherwise; to not give up and know when to ask for help takes a real special man.

With us Gabe, allow the man in you to feel, to take a break, and just be here and not feel judged.

Hugs,

John

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I feel more like a sad little boy trying to be a grown up and failing miserably.

I care...yes I care so much. Is it really enough?

Dear Gabe,

At some place in us all is that sad frightened child who wonders about what we are trying to do or what we are trying to be.

Yes it is enough to care so much.

However:

There is not human alive who can do it all.

There is not a man or woman who can fix it all.

We are not Gods.

We love, We care, We help, We survive with our loved ones. We do everything we can to help and protect and nurture.

Of course it hurts that you can't make everything better but you are doing what you can and are giving the support needed.

One of the hardest lessons in my life was trying to accept that I just can't fix everything. I would often try so hard it would make things worse. It is a struggle to deal with. You are doing everything you can for your loving family and from what you have said you have made progress. That is what counts.

Mia

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In Man of La Mancha, there is of course, Don Quixote who in sees himself as the noblest form of Knighthood, but we can easily see his failing reason and less than perfect interpretations of actions to take, but there is another VERY important man with him, it is his Squire Sancho Panza. Sancho can see all of Quixote's madness but nevetheless serves him and serves the people whose lives Quixote did in fact touch for the best with willingness and self honor. Its ok, to be Sancho and not Sir Lancelot, or any of the other Arthurian mob. So dinner is at a square table over in the corner, and not the big round one in the center of stuff. You still have your part of the story and you don't have to dodge lances quite as often.

Sancho was every bit the man and more than Don Quixote was!! We take our hero's and not the ones the rest of the mess looks to.

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Gabe,

I used to run laps around campus at night as though on patrol. I trained in martial arts for a great many years and learned all of the physical and mental techniques to defend not just myself, but those around me. The thing is we don't think like they do. We don't understand exactly what it is that drives them. All we can do is clean up the mess. You are far stronger than you know and you mean more than you could possibly imagine to those who see you every day and us here at Laura's.

You can't be a our rock and defender at the same time. They just do different things.

hugs and take care sweetie,

April

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