In Reply to: Re: Maybe save this whole discussion for later? posted by Oldtimer on October 06, 2005 at 13:56:37:
At least for me.
I was speechless when I saw Kristi's interaction with her Dad, as well as listnening to John, Nina, and China too. What got me is how much I could see my own daughter in the way they were saying things and in what they said. I think, on the whole they were very representative of the feeling of so many SG ex members.
I speak from the experiences I've had with my kids. My daughter does not like to hear me talk about my hippy idealism and how I got into the Family. It's upsetting for her to hear me try to say the way the Fam was in the early days wasn't how it turned out. I've found that any "explaining" is counter productive if I want to have any real communication with her. As a result I've found that there's so many other things to share together. Most of it has to do with sharing what she's accomplishing since she's been out, we've been able to help her some, not nearly as much as we'd like to. She really gets excited about how things have gone for me. For both of us it hasn't been easy, there's still a lot of struggles, and we have a really good laugh sometimes about some things that have to do with the past.
I don't know if this would work for Jim or any other parents who have struggles with their sons or daughters, but when I totally refrained from any kind of comment on how I got into the Family, or what it was like to be brainwashed, controlled, etc, ...absolutely no explaining, just simple pure openess to my daughters feelings, anger, rage, frustration--everything--that's what made a difference in our relationship. Then I said those 2 words, "I'm sorry." and I meant it. And later, when I talked to her again, after things had set awhile, I said it again, "I'm sorry." Nothing more.