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26 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Do you have any reason to suspect that someone would reach a different conclusion? Or are you just saying it because "what if"? 

Of course I think someone else could reach a different conclusion.  Anytime anyone gets me to tell this whole horrible story, the conclusions I hear are quite different from my own.  But they also tend to be quite different from what your generic Objectivist conclusion might be (at least as far as I would picture it) which is why I'm so curious to hear what the general consensus would be of those who claim to share my same basic worldview.

It's not just my own worldview, I might add: one of the explicitly-agreed-on conditions I asked for before agreeing to move back in with Tiffany was that Objectivism was the general set of rules and principles by which we'd arbitrate any disputes.  She had absolutely no reservations about that, originally (and as I mentioned she seemed to actually be living it in her own real life) but towards the end it was one of the things she made some rather unpleasant comments about.

 

I can't guarantee I'll AGREE with everyone else's perspectives on this, here.  But since we are all Objectivists I can't see how I could fail to learn something useful from such perspectives, unless I was truly committed to a long-term strategy of evasion (as I was when I first agreed to move back in with her).

 

I meant it when I said that I am pooped for tonight, though.  I've started drinking and I've found a song which perfectly characterizes where Tiffany and I currently stand, today.  Here you go:

Good night.

 

PS:

 

Considering how I once felt about Tiffany's survival (and still do whenever I stop to think about what she did) I'm fairly certain that these arrangements involve lies I told myself at one point, but cannot currently unravel.  This is why I say that "it's all a goddamn mess" and also why I started this damn thread.  If anyone can help me untangle it then it's other Objectivists.

Edited by Harrison Danneskjold
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Is this the primary issue you posted about? I mean, is this the thing you are trying to solve? As far as looking back on your past, it's important to recognize that you don't need to justify it o

I'm concerned about the opposite. I'm concerned that you are seeking to be put on trial and subsequently condemned as a moral monster who deserves to be deleted from the face of the earth. I'm not goi

I don't know if a public forum will prevent you from getting some pot shots that will hurt you, but I am delighted that you are putting all this in writing. You may get responses from people who want

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On 4/8/2021 at 11:55 AM, Doug Morris said:

I don't believe in a supernatural karmic force that brings people's actions back to them.  I do think that irrational actions tend to give bad results and rational actions tend to give good results.

I don't believe that good actions always lead to good outcomes (although in general they do tend to).  I do believe that evil actions never fail to lead to suffering, every single time, usually in more ways than one.

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On 4/10/2021 at 1:02 AM, Easy Truth said:

Once you see it as "I will not walk away from my son", it is in fact a direction.

It may not be specific, but it is the overall direction ... your purpose.

No question there is some PTSD there. It means you have to clarify things through the fog that it creates.

Then it is a question of how to achieve "not walking away from JT" the best way possible. It's going to have to be a compromise.

The court system is not on the side of fathers. It's just the way it is.

You have to play the game. What does Tiffany want? What kind of trade is she willing to go through. She knows that you are the one person that she can trust the most to take care of her child if she can't.

"What do I want" is actually a very hard question to answer in this case. But the answer is right in front of you.

What does being with JT look like with all the constraints you would face right now. And yes, you will be giving up a lot.

But you know what you're fighting for and you know you are willing to pay the price for JT.

It's a hero's journey.

The question is: Is the fairy in the bottle a friend or a foe?
 

😆  I don't think the bottle bit is a question.

Drinking helps (particularly after dredging all of this stuff up) to dull some of the extremely negative emotions I experience.  It's not a friend or a good long-term strategy.  But it's not something I have a hard time dropping whenever I put my mind to it, either (as I have a few times before).

 

Tiffany still wants to have a relationship with me.  That seems to be a much higher priority for her than JT, which is somewhat flattering whenever I'm able to think of it in purely abstract terms.  She's always maintained (even while I was threatening to kill her) that she still loves me and I know that she actually means it, every time.

The thought of whoring myself for the chance to be JT's dad again is not a foreign one to me.  It's a degrading thought and I'm pretty sure it's one of the things that's done so much damage to my psyche throughout all this, but I know that it would be a successful strategy.

 

I really don't know which direction to go with any of that at the moment, though.  All I know is that this is helping.

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On 4/11/2021 at 4:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

When was the last time she promised that you could have JT? Was she doing it even after the pizza incident?

Yes.  She was doing it right up until we moved back in together a year or two ago.  She was openly admitting that I was a far better parent until one argument we had about a year ago in which I pointed out that this also implied that it was in JT's best interests for me to be his legal guardian (after which she's started denying it).

On 4/11/2021 at 4:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

To renounce something means you formally give it up, like with a public announcement or legal proceeding. If she just casually and privately said that you could have JT, that doesn't count. That doesn't have the weight of a serious agreement before witnesses or government officials.

Not to be flippant, but who cares about the damn beaurocrats?

 

Maybe this does tie back into my views of rights and government.  The times when she was promising I could have him were all during very serious discussions in which I declared my intentions of divorce.  And she didn't actually phrase it as a promise; the way she worded it, every goddamn time, was as "you'll have to take him; I wouldn't know how"; as a responsibility (which I was only too eager to adopt).

That responsibility is part of why I didn't leave several years sooner than I actually did; because I couldn't figure out the material side of it on my own.  If I had known that keeping any degree of custody over him wasn't going to happen then I would've just said "fuck it" and left with the clothes on my back, precisely as I did when I moved out of my parents' house.

 

When I'm talking about "rights" the US government usually doesn't even enter into my mind.  They consider healthcare a right, for Christ's sake; I don't bother tying such important concepts to such idiotic little details.  I'm talking about what's virtuous or vicious and good or evil.

On 4/11/2021 at 4:12 AM, MisterSwig said:

Also, you two were pretty young and very much developing your values. As those initial years went by, shouldn't you have expected her to become more and more attached to her son? Isn't that how it normally works?

No.  That was how it worked for me but I never expected it to work like that for her.

 

Throughout my entire childhood my parents were grooming me for eventually being a dad of my own.  Secondhanded as it may be, I've found a great deal of joy in actually fulfilling that dream of theirs (and it turns out that I truly am pretty damn good at it).

She never wanted to be a mother.  There were several times during her pregnancy that she mentioned having second thoughts about going through with it and to this day JT seems like he's just an afterthought to her.  The more I think about it the more I think I probably was right in my original conclusion that she only kept him as a sort of leash on me (since the way she's always felt about me has never been equivocal).

She's gotten much better at being a mom since I left and forced her to do it alone.  But even now I don't think her heart's in it.  And that alone tears me apart since I (who currently cannot be a dad to him) - my heart is too far in it to put into words.

 

I am still convinced that any beaurocrat who knew the full context of absolutely everything that'd happened would've awarded me full custody on the spot.  But beaurocrats don't get paid to be smart or to inquire about context, do they?

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10 minutes ago, Harrison Danneskjold said:

The thought of whoring myself for the chance to be JT's dad again is not a foreign one to me.  It's a degrading thought

Why is it a degrading thought to give up a lower value to for a higher value? JT seems to be your "higher" value or is that not correct? Fighting to maintain one's relationship with one's son, or a loved one is in fact a very honorable intention. It is very unfair to yourself to call it whoring.

The issue with alcohol, or the problem with it is "self medication". If someone else was giving you bottle to use, or even an opioid, it could be ok, as long as you are loyal to that relationship. But from what is visible here, we have an addiction at work here.

One can throw as much logic into it, but and addiction to a mood altering substance is like another person that is stronger than you, in the same room. He will win all the time unless you clearly identify your alternatives. If there is absolutely no better alternative than to get drunk, then I would agree with you. This will not convince you right now, which is understandable ... and you are not alone. Ideally, seeing another like yourself will help you see yourself and your alternatives. You may think you are the only one struggling with this type of thing but there are many. (you're doing better than a lot)

Focusing on what your highest value will eventually help you tolerate what has to be done to achieve, to triumph. An addiction is "an unwanted tendency", a saboteur. Wherever there was an ambition that was not achieved, there was an addiction somewhere nearby.

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17 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

Why is it a degrading thought to give up a lower value to for a higher value? JT seems to be your "higher" value or is that not correct? Fighting to maintain one's relationship with one's son, or a loved one is in fact a very honorable intention. It is very unfair to yourself to call it whoring.

Because having sex with someone says a lot about yourself.  It says more about you if you don't even know what sort of person they are, and still more (and not in a good way) if you do know them to be not an admirable sort of person.

Going through with such an action, in spite of reasons why you never otherwise would, in order to obtain some other thing that's totally unrelated to the action itself - there is a word for that.  It's prostitution.

 

And I'm not saying that's necessarily the worst thing I could do in my current situation.  On the contrary; I have done it a few times before, without much guilt, because I knew that the payment I'd receive was worth what I was giving up.  But the word for it is "whoring" and there's no reason to overcomplicate that.

 

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On 4/10/2021 at 3:13 PM, StrictlyLogical said:

Furthermore, imagine your best you.

Currently I cannot.

 

I don't know if my best me would be the one whoring itself out to Tiffany in order to have some sort of contact with JT or if my best possible "me" would be telling Tiffany precisely what I think of her, trusting JT to work it out for himself and doing something more productive with my time in the meantime.  I just do not currently know.

Once I figure out what the "best possible version of myself" would be doing in my current situation then I'll probably stop paying any attention to this thread and simply do it.  But I currently just don't know.

Good night.

Edited by Harrison Danneskjold
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20 minutes ago, Harrison Danneskjold said:

Because having sex with someone says a lot about yourself.  It says more about you if you don't even know what sort of person they are, and still more (and not in a good way) if you do know them to be not an admirable sort of person.

Yes, if that is the meaning one, in this case you, want to put into it. Sex can also be completely impersonal. You can be a thousand miles away with your favorite movie star or some other fantasy.

Whoring has other connotations that you have to watch out for and that is that your love is worthless. Your love is not worthless. Many whore's don't care at all. You care.

When it comes to people working at a job they don't like, whoring sort of loses its meaning. It would mean we've all been whores. Ok, whatever.

Ultimately, the objection is that you are degrading an honorable motive, a motive that you have. You may have to swim through a sewer to be with your son. If your son is that important, it would be impressive, heroic.

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