Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Grooming

It has been 7.5 weeks since I returned home from our trip to find my home and dogs in a mess and discovered that the person whom I considered my closest friend was far from a friend. In fact not even a good person.

I wish I could say I am over it. I am not. I am still very angry. Not hurt anymore. I didn't lose anything. I didn't have what I thought I had at all.

I realise now that I was 'groomed' by this person over a long period of time. Groomed. Just like the peado teacher when I was a child. And that wasn't the only time. I was young and vulnerable and therefore an obvious target for such people to groom.

Trouble is, I was 46 when this person set their sight upon me. You'd think I would have recongnized it. I didn't. Not for an instant did I even suspect anything untoward was happening.

We met at a group I used to attend. We all had similar experiences and we talked about that and how we dealt with it today. I used to enjoy going and looked forward to it, especially after I had become close with this woman.

Through the talking at this group, this person would have known exactly what my vulnerabilities were. Which buttons to press and which buttons not to press. She was very good. She was patient. It took months of work on her part before I let her into my life. She made all the effort. She always greeted me with a smile and something nice to say. Didn't fawn or go over the top. She was careful.

Throughtout our 'relationship' I felt I had the sister I had always wanted. I felt completely at ease with her. She told me her 'secrets, and eventually I told her mine. I doubt hers were true.
There was never any friction between us. She was always smiles and compliments and when she started to 'care' for me she seemed to intuitivley know what I would need and when to leave me be. Of course, I started to pay her to do the things I can't do for myself. Once a week or so we went out for day. I really enjoyed that. She would manouver my wheelchair and was good at it. Never made me feel a burden. She was very good at caring and fun and I loved her.

I didn't know she was a consumate lier.

Well if you have been following this, you will know that I returned from my holiday early and caught her out. She was not what she had seemed at all. Far, far from it. She didn't give a flying f**k about me. She cared about money and about her image as a kind, caring person in the eyes of others(who I found out were under the impression she did all she did for me for free.) I am not the only one she 'cared' for either and got paid for it. I assume she still does.

It is so obvious I was groomed. I am shocked that I fell for it. I really didn't see it coming. Not at all. I am now almost 48 and it seems still a sucker. It really pisses me off. Big time.

Apart from going to the dog shows, I have been pretty isolated Monday to Friday when John is not here. He hasn't been here for 10 days and I won't see him until this Friday now. Work's been busy. It's good for him though. He has been to premiers and dinners and tonight he gets to meet a load of really famous people. Anyway, I digress.

The isolation is me. I just don't feel I want to be 'out there' and I certainly don't want much to do with people right now. Some people have shown kindnesses and done odd things and I thank them but keep them at a distance. How the hell do I know who I can trust? My 'intuition' was good, I thought. I have avoided people and places, rightly so, because my gut told me to be careful. And yet I did not see this coming at all.

I don't go to my group anymore either. I miss it but I would never feel able to talk there again. Or anywhere for that matter. Particularly there tho. In this last 7.5 weeks not one person has telephoned to ask why I am not there or how I am. I know at least a few know what has happened. So much for caring.

I know given time, the anger will go. I know I will recover from the emotional turmoil. I know enough and have experienced enough to know that this will pass. However, I cannot imagine ever trusting again. I went to visit a dog person a few days ago. It was nice. I found myself feeling comfortable with them and enjoying myself. I left because it frightened me and all the 3 hour drive home, I wondered if I could trust this person.

It boils down to me trusting me and I don't see how I can do that. I let myself down very badly.
I can't trust myself to protect myself. I can't trust myself to see wolves in sheeps clothing. I can't trust myself to see through the bullshit.

I grew up knowing I couldn't trust the adults around me. Yet it didn't stop me trusting others when I got away and was older. And yes, I made mistakes and put my trust in those I should hot have. None of them were like this one tho. Besides, I was pretty screwy back then. I didn't know myself and didn't understand anything and had not even begun to reover form the abuse of childhood. Now at 48, well and functioning, it seems I still cannot trust myself to not put myself in harms way.

I don't know how this will pan out. No man is an island. I know that. I also know I cannot see how I can form relationships with people now without always being on my gaurd and wondering if they are genuine or out for themselves.

On the positive side, I have not taken myself to bed and stayed there in a fit of self pity. I have got on and done what I can. I have attended my shows. I have fulfilled my responsibilities re the dogs and am still finding great joy with them. I am knitting, mainly by hand, tho not much. My creative juice seems to be on dribble right now. I am reading and watching stuff I enjoy. I am not a wreck. I am still grateful for what I have got, still aware of how fortunate I am. But i am still angry and wondering how I will deal with this trust issue.

Over and out.

6 comments:

angie cox said...

I could give you a list of people I have trusted Colin..they mostly wanted me to child-mind their kids whilst they went out partying .I love Holly but I have never wanted a house full of kids. Or the lady who groomed me then I found out she just wanted to sell me children's books.But the worst one was one of the strangest events in my life when I was used as a scapegoat by a very bitter and twisted woman and my best friend did nothing yet we were mutual friends.I had depression for a year after that. I asked Holly if I was the biggest sucker in the World and she said "No Mum you are just a sweet person who can't imagine doing that to some-one else". So Colin think positive ..I didn't expect it because It's not in my nature and thank goodness for that.

Mary Beth said...

There you are! I'm relieved to see your post, actually, I was quite worried. It is quite common to find oneself bamboozled. I'm sorry this has happened to you and to your dogs. Everyone has something they want and I tell myself that that's why I like working with animals. Angie Cox is right, you know. It's not a matter of you being too dense to see it coming. Humans! Hurrumph!

Cherry Rolfe said...

Did comment a couple of days ago Colin - not sure if I missed the right buttons, or said something you didn't like?? Whichever - you are in my thoughts - Angie's words were resonant for me - we have all fallen. You are not alone.

Sandra Knapp said...

Hello Colin,
I found your blog though your post to Socknitters list. This post touched me very much, and I can't express how sorry I am that someone you trusted should have hurt you so deeply. I'm sure, being an intelligent person, that you will recover in time. And I hope that eventually you will not feel the need to keep barriers up to protect yourself. We are all vulnerable to such things occasionally throughout our lives, but as we move on and adjust we also gain stength in the knowledge we gain with every experience, be it good or bad. My heart goes out to you and I wish you well in all things.

Sandie :)

Alice said...

I have just discovered your blog site (is that what its called?) via the OZMkers group. Haven't ever contributed to a blog before.I am very touched by your writing.
(not that that necessarily helps you in any way!)But i just thought i would say it.

Alice said...

And furthermore... I think that after a few experiences like the one you described here (I call it being slapped across the face,) one does become wiser and more resistant to the connivings of others, to the extent that one doesn't get sucked in by those kinds of ploys anymore.
all the best