The Survivors and Thrivers

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The Survivors and Thrivers

A group dedicated to the life struggles of men. Disease, abuse, mental illness, a broken ceiling tile could be among the topics. Here men can discuss their scars and provide insight as to how they overcame, or continue to overcome, their struggles.

Members: 53
Latest Activity: Jun 14

Discussion Forum

we have all survived from something

Started by Michael J. K.. Last reply by Michael J. K. Jun 14. 4 Replies

Not many new discussions

Started by Michael J. K. May 4. 0 Replies

I need to talk .

Started by Scott L Ferrell. Last reply by Michael J. K. Apr 9. 21 Replies

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Comment by Michael J. K. on May 10, 2014 at 3:20pm

Hope all is going okay.  Glad to see a few posting.

Comment by Michael J. K. on May 10, 2014 at 8:38am

I was hit at 8 yrs old and they did not have helmets back then.  I went up 15 feet in the air and landed on the street.   When I was 20 I was hit again a girl my age was at a stop sign and she went into me on my bike.   Was not even watching.   My right leg had a contusion from my foot to my knee my leg.

Comment by Andrew McNeal on December 16, 2010 at 4:31pm

To add to that, when I was 15, about a month before I got my license, I was riding my bike about two miles from home, and was hit by an '89 Cadillac going 40 mph (paramedic said). My head went completely through the car's windshield. Earlier, my dad had just happened to walk by and saw me riding off without a helmet. He made me come back and put on a helmet. That saved my life. I was knocked out, woke up being loaded into the ambulance on a stretcher. The paramedics expected broken bones, maybe even internal injuries. I walked away from it. I walked out of the damn hospital after being checked out, a few hours after the accident. I went to school the next day without one problem. I destroyed the Cadillac, smashing the grill completely out, bending the steel bumper, shattering both headlights, and breaking the entire left half  of the windshield out. Me:1 Cadillac: 0. If that isn't a survival story I don't know what is.

Comment by Andrew McNeal on December 16, 2010 at 4:06pm

My full story is in Introductions forum, but I'll give a few details of important events here. I write dates like 16 Dec 2010, I do geneaology as a hobby, thats how dates are written 99% of the time, so I'm used to that format.

-born 25 weeks premature in 1988, adopted in 1989 after dumped at the hospital by my birth mother, not expected to live one week, then one month, then through the year. I'm 22 with a fiancee, apartment, car, and job.

-Extremely smart in school, I had read over 2,000 books by kindergarten, was far beyond most classmates for several years.

-7th and 8th grade were hell. Constantly made fun of for being shorter than everyone, and not being into rap, sagging pants, and all the other "cool" crap. Yes, I'm white, and even other white kids were into that.

-Gained more friends in high school, the "odd" group. We had a bodybuilder huge black guy who I saw bench 600 lbs, a scrawny Asian kid who had a new fetish every week, a kid who took "sci-fi nerd" to a whole new level, an old-school '80s punk rocker who made sure everyone knew he was atheist, and me. We all got along great, had some awesome times with all of them.

-Had three people close to me pass away in 2005, junior year. My step-grandfather died, then a week later my all-time favorite teacher, who taught at the same school for 36 years, passed. He taught my mom, my older cousin, and me. One of the best teachers, and men, I ever knew. Lastly was my grandma, who was taken four months later by cancer. She was 76, and had smoked daily since she was about 16. She smoked her last cigarette the same night that she passed away in her sleep.

-In November '07, after pretty much failing out of college after 1 1/2 years, I got a girl pregnant. She wanted nothing to do with me, have no part in the baby's life. She was a partier, druggie, typical white trash going nowhere. Had a different "man" every week it seemed. I moved back to DFW area, went to automotive tech school. Met some of the most low-class, thug guys there, hung out with the wrong crowd. Drank, partied, honestly, I learned alot about what NOT to do in life, which I would not be who I am today without that experience. Culminated in me and a "friend" spending a night in jail, the drunk tank. My dad bailed me out, last time I ever saw the guy I got arrested with. Felt extremely embarrassed, and ashamed. Figured I would for sure lose my girlfriend of almost a year, luckily she stayed with me.

-My son Cayden was born 7 Apr 2008. Ended up being taken away from his mother by CPS, after finding marijuana in his system, and her leaving him alone for hours in her apartment while she went to "hang out" with a boyfriend. Complete piece of shit mother, I'm sorry, but I feel really upset about that. My parents now care for him, he is in a very good home with them, Tiffany (fiancee) and I will be taking him once we are settled and more financially stable. Honestly can't wait, he's an amazing kid.

-And so came 2010. Two years with my fiancee, moved in together in March, going great at this time. I started getting extreme mood swings, depressed one hour, fine the next. Then, it turned into depressed one week, super excited and ready to go the next. I got extremely angry at little things, or even things I thought would happen or were being done behind my back. I knew something was wrong, so I set up an appt with a psychiatrist. Diagnosed with bipolar type I, and severe ADD. But I ended up not liking her, she tried to tell me what was wrong without letting me really explain what was happening. Quit going to her, and found a man who has saved my life, relationship, and happiness. He actually listened, and diagnosed me with the same, bipolar, and ADD, just by listening to what I had gone through and was experiencing.

-Was put on medicine, it stopped the spending sprees, extreme depression/excitement, still had anger issues though. In early June, my fiancee's best friend had her second boyfriend. He seemed like a cool guy, little did I or anyone else know, he was a liar and con-artist. He always talked about "how a man acts", but he was less than even a little boy. He was pure scum. Lied to everyone about his job, money he had, conned me into believing him. I was stupid, and wasn't strong enough to say no. He ended up costing me about $9,000 in debt, I bought very expensive jewelry for me and my fiancee, he BS'd me about paying for it by working with him. I agreed, a stupid stupid decision on my part. But, the past is in the past, and things like that need to stay there.

-Last thing, but perhaps where I did the most growing up. Before, I couldn't care less how I looked, acted, talked, or anything. I had an "F You" attitude towards everyone. I was almost 23, and acted like I was 15. On 8 Nov 2010, that completely changed. My fiancee wanted to leave me, she would pack her things the next day, and move back in with her parents, and try to forget about me. I was faced with two very big decisions, let her go and risk more trouble, depression, and losing someone I truly loved and cared about, or fight for her. I chose the latter. i stood in the doorway of our bedroom, talking to her for an hour that night, maybe longer. She didn't really say much, was still "deciding" whether to stay or not. She was afraid I would not change, and would drag her, and us, down, leaving us poor, or in jail, or going nowhere in life. I told her differently, but realized that words are words, actions are far more important. The next night, I did the same thing, I talked to her until I could not physically stand up anymore. I went to bed, woke up about midnight, went outside, and prayed for the first time in five years, that God would either help me get through the breakup, or would show me how to save our relationship.

-I saved Tiffany and I. I'm terrible at giving speeches, but I saved our relationship those two nights. I cleaned the apartment better than she did. I quit being pushy and smothering with her. I made a huge personal effort. The second day we were still "in limbo", I found this website. I somehow knew exploring this site would help me save our relationship. So I read the articles, read the forum, and tried my hardest to apply it. My father had not taught me, nor my grandfather, but I wanted to become a real man, not a boy.

-The last month, Tiffany has been absolutely blown away at how much better I am. I changed the way I acted, taking a breath when angry and thinking about what to say. Cleaning up at an almost OCD level, everything is clean, put away, washed, folded, and done before she even gets home from work. I used to be a shy boy, afraid of talking to people because I felt they were better than me. I now look them in the eye and have a real conversation with people. I won't shut up to the point of annoyance sometimes, but Tiff and my parents love it. I don't wear t-shirts and crappy looking jeans in public, even just going to the store. I have remembered the lessons and values I learned as a kid, and actually cared about and applied them to my life. I couldn't be happier, knowing that I have gone from a depressed, stupid-acting little boy, to being proud to say "I'm a man, a young one, but I am a real man". I've even taken up classic shaving and genealogy as hobbies, when before, I just played Xbox (still love it, but not nearly as time-consuming as before).

-Sorry it's so long, but if anyone is a "survivor", I believe I am. I'm not special, I've never been in a real fight, or war, or saved someone's life. But I have had my own struggles, and have fought through them tooth and nail, doing all I can, even at my worst points. Is that not what this site is about, what being a man is about? Thanks for reading.

Comment by Jared J. King on November 5, 2010 at 11:01pm
I respect you a lot, Scott, for openly discussing what has happened to you. It means that you're a strong person. Just that you're talking about it, even if it's just here with us, means you're on the road to healing. I'll be hoping and praying, along with all the other guys, that you might eventually find some local support of some kind, whatever it is. Keep at it, brother. We're all pulling for you.
Comment by Ian Wilson on November 5, 2010 at 10:38pm
wow Scott... that had to have stung hearing your brother react like that. we are here for you. and i hope you can find local support as well.
Comment by Scott L Ferrell on November 5, 2010 at 6:19pm
Thank you so much for your words, Sholom. I do feel strong from the support of my brothers. I finally told my own brother after 25 years and the first words out of his mouth were, "was he black?" So the only support I can get is from you guys. Thanks.
Comment by Jared J. King on May 25, 2010 at 9:27am
Though my pain is not the same as your own, I have met with a lot of that attitude, as well. Our culture is one of pain avoidance at all costs, coupled with really poor listening skills. I've found that when I've attempted to talk to friends, they always throw it back on me like it's my fault.

The best thing that I have found for healing is someone who just listens sympathetically a lot and asks a few pointed questions about how I feel or what I'm thinking as I discuss my emotions. It's been my therapist, mostly, but occasionally my wife does that well.

Don't let others' ignorance discourage you. Just keep trying and plowing ahead. It's the only way to heal. It's taken me a lot of courage to overcome that, but once you find some success, that gives you all the courage you need to keep going.

As Red Green used to always say, "Hang in there. I'm pullin' for ya."
Comment by Scott L Ferrell on May 25, 2010 at 9:18am
Thank you, I have tried to tell my buddies about it, but they all say the same thing,"how could you have allowed him to do that to you? I would have killed him" So I guess, I am a little nervous talking about it now.
Comment by Jared J. King on May 25, 2010 at 9:17am
Welcome, Scott. I hope this group can offer meaningful support to you as you begin to deal with this.
 

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