Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.

Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.
e-mail: batushkad@yahoo.com

Wednesday, December 01, 2010


One of the most destructive problems is the breakdown of community, and it is this breakdown that has often led to the breakdown of persons. Though we may put many around us, we are alone. Relationships have become superficial, there is no longer concern for the other, and we are pressed by societal and financial pressures to focus on our own survival. We do not concern ourselves much with the plight of others except a few we may call family or friends, and even then, our concern and attention is waning. It is this which is leading to numerous dilemmas for our children and the diagnosis of a gamut of so-called mental disorders and the their mass drugging to subdue them and force their conformity to a system of madness, a system they and most despise but which continues to perpetuate itself. We may have at one time gone to our neighbors home and asked for an ingredient for a dish and they would give it and invite us in. Today, do we even know our neighbor, do we even care to know our neighbor?
And so we go along wearing masks throughout the day, playing the game, taking upon us the various roles. I see the impact of this upon our children, who become torn when made a pawn in this game. Families seek to project the goodly image to the outside while the reality is that there is immense turmoil and conflict. For some of these children, they begin to become part of the masking reality as well. I recall a young man I worked with whose family life was strained and there had been a lot of traumatic events and harshness. In the beginning, he presented his family as ‘golden’, and denied that anything anyone had noted was of truth. But fortunately over time, he came to grasp the courage and ability to think critically to challenge the way things were and to present reality to the family. And it certainly did require immense courage as in these situations the secrets are safely guarded and no one wants them exposed for what they are. The reaction was to be expected, the blame was shifted, and the young man was made to be the scapegoat and threats issued as to what would happen if he did not change his thinking and accept the myth the family held to. I have seen this similar dynamic in situations of sexual abuse that involves a relative. The only way that the young man was able to finally come to the point of challenging the family system and surviving the verbal assaults was by having one from the outside who had been able to forge a connection with both him and the family. In this, it was possible to advocate for the young man and also challenge the other family members but in a diplomatic way. This tactic worked and it was agreed upon that certain ways of interacting would need to be worked upon. They left behind the myth and came to face reality.
So if we are to truly be alive, to truly move beyond surviving to thriving, if we are to truly be human beings rather than alienated beings or drugged zombies, then we are going to need to return to the sense of community, to lay aside the barriers, and to be able to realize our common humanity. We are going to have to abandon the myths and the games we are often so entrenched within, and accept truth, even when painful.
There are powerful forces at work which pull us to and fro and infect us with ideas of who we are, what we should be, and often block us from becoming. These forces arise within our social and familial structures. We are sent repetitive messages and they become deeply engrained. We may have been told we are not attractive or too attractive, not motivated or too achieving, etc. And we enter the social sphere having absorbed these messages. As we do so we begin a painful process of comparisons. There becomes a striving for something or sometimes nothing at all. But if there is striving, it is for what and for whom? Some sadly seek only to survive, it is all they can do. But if we can realize that no matter what has been dumped upon us and what the conditions are, we retain the choice to become! We have the choice to allow these powerful forces to consume us or to be defiant in the face of them and develop a process of unlearning. In this unlearning, we may be able to break free and emerge into a new world of being.

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