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15 Comments on “Excerpt from The Ascension: The Kathryn Keats Story”

  1. I’ve been a little sensitive lately to media reports of violent madmen and women, but I want to thank Kathryn for this account. I suffer from bipolar disorder and post traumatic stress disorder. In the support groups I attend, there’s not a lot of sympathy for women and men in abusive relationships. “Why would anyone do that?” And while I cannot put it into words, I know the leather thong that keeps tripping these people up.

  2. Thank you for your thoughts on this, Joel; it sounds like you speak from personal experience, in the sense that you’ve seen those in abusive relationships (including you, if I’ve understood correctly) not getting much support. I wonder whether Kathryn Keats’s story — or some of the other more general material on Stockholm Syndrome — might help people to understand better what it can be like? I wonder what it might be like for those of you have experienced such situations to read of someone else out there having experienced something similar?

    All the best,
    Greg

  3. Joel,
    I agree with you about the little understanding of what makes one stay in an abusive relationship. I have been thinking alot about the wound required of those of us that are lured in and stay ( not that we do not have moments of fighting to get out)and the marriage that must go with the wound called lack of education. How great it would have been if we could have identified some markers in our abusers and ourselves. I think the best thing we can do is to join Greg and Dr. Carver and countless others in serving to educate. Those that do not understand may never do so. However, we have the opportunity to understand one another and free others who are entering,exiting, or are now in abusive relationships. Let’s keep working to understand ourselves and those like us. I know that there is healing in serving. That action, for you and I, will allow us to gain strength and recover and therefore allow others to live vicariously through us. Does this make sense? I am curious to know what others think about this?
    Kathryn Keats

  4. I have felt like going back into hiding this month. I continue to fight these moments of being afraid to be seen, or found, or thought of, and am, meanwhile, trying my best to tell the story so other people can get out of or not enter into relationships that are life threatening.I would like to hear from others who have been in these relationships and are suddenly free. What is life like for you now? How is each day and how do you handle your flashbacks?
    Kathryn Keats

  5. Kathryn, I cannot speak from first-hand experience — not having experienced anything remotely similar myself. But I sure can imagine that transition you’ve described could be difficult. Mental habits that have been sustained (and which arguably served a useful purpose in terms of self-preservation) for not just weeks or months, but years, probably don’t just fade away by themselves. Some people may find that deliberate and conscious effort, day after day, can help retrain those mental habits, perhaps replacing them with other habits that are more useful in the changed situation, or even eliminating them altogether.
    I wonder would any other readers want to share experiences of this sort of habit ‘retraining’?
    All the best,
    Greg

  6. Dear Greg,
    I appreciate your feedback and support. I am working daily to stop the habit, which I agree it is, of the depression that has come from this experience. I agree with the importance of replacing the habit with another. I am doing Bikram Yoga(I cannot look into the mirror during class) and composing, which is helping, but I am still so dark in my heart. Writing helps.I really do not know exactly how to come back out into the world. It is the most vulnerable feeling. I WILL though. I want to stop the monolgue and begin to live! Does this make sense? Thank you, Greg.
    Kathryn Keats

  7. Kathryn, you sound determined to keep yourself moving forward, drawing strength from those things that you personally find helpful. The vulnerability and uncertainty you’ve described seem very real and present, yet still that determination comes to the fore.
    You ask does this make sense; to me, anyway, it seems like you are creating sense, day by day, out of what began as a situation that probably held very little sense at the time.
    All the best,
    Greg

  8. Dear Kathyrn, Thanks for sharing your story. I am a musician also had a “thang” with a brilliant musician who was schizophrenic also. Due to limited space to keep from getting sucked into “space” I listen to new music that I do not have memories that can be triggered by otherwise I am reliving every detail and I don’t listen to any melancholia otherwise I will just beome imobilzied with sadness. Try zydeco it is happy music. Hang in girlfriend, Karen

  9. Karen,
    I am so sorry I did not respond sooner. My Father passed this summer and I had the fortune to be by his side. I miss him so much.
    I have to share this with you…the record I just made has joy and rhythm on it!! I am so happy to finally hear joy…to feel joy,to compose something other than 4/4/ morbid ballads!!
    I think the email you sent is wonderful and I will try zydeco the next time “space” comes calling. Always my best to you. Hang in there as well.
    Kathryn Keats

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