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Violence leads to violence
Violence is everywhere! In films, on tv, in the news, in our papers and magazines not to mention the internet and in our lives.
Recently violence has come to the forefront of my my mind, even more so than usual. While I have drawn greatly from my personal experiences I have also looked at violence in a general sense.
An interesting look at violence
Violence on my mind
Over the past few months violence has been on my mind, thoughts of me being violent. This is something that has left me quite uncomfortable. Though through much time spent thinking and researching I came to the conclusion that it has been caused by my medication that has been of help for the last 4 years. However in my current situation I feel that my mental state has improved and the medication is probably something I no longer need. However unfortunately the withdrawal is going to be a long drawn out process over approximately six months. Due to debilitating withdrawal symptoms like insomnia and migraine.
Due to stress caused by another person something that was a frequent occurrence over the fast few years lead me to physically attack him a somewhat blind rage (Read what happened here) While I was honestly shocked by my behaviour, which has lead me to believe that it is the medication, It has opened my eyes to violence through my thoughts and feelings following this incident as well as reading some literature on the subject.
I turned violent after years of feeling like a victim
Violence and how it feels
After what was years of built up aggravation, stress, distress etc. I lost my cool, albeit briefly. If you've not look at the detailed account yet (read it here) I said in the detailed post about what happened I don't feel any remorse, which I still don't. Sadly I have to admit that I enjoyed it and I feel that I want more. It actually makes me feel ill to write that out but I'm being brutally honest. He had caused what felt like emotional abuse over a long time which had caused me to resent him. So to say the least I had a fair beef with him then after all this time it came out.
The feelings it left me with, aside from releasing all the built up tension and angst, were what I can only compare to the feelings you are left with after sex or after a good gym session. So what comes with that is the craving for more.To be honest I dont know where to draw the line between what is the way my mind works naturally and what I believe is influence of medication.
Also another factor may be the fact that he has been spreading the story of what happened that night to all of my wifes (rather large) family, the anxious part of me is wondering and wanting to know what is being said and if ill feeling towards me have spread. Another part of me is very aware that he has caused this by spreading ultimately this gossip which as gossip does in this family will have spread like wildfire. While following what I did to him I want to say I can't hold it against him, but combine that with the fact of what emotional turmoil he has caused me and his unwillingness to take any culpability for that or make any effort to change his actions around me, I honestly can't do that.
On the feelings of enjoyment of violence
Like I said it gave me feelings much like feelings that you get following sex or the gym, it was rewarding. While I know that I don't want to ever physically hit anyone like that again, the way I feel is quite the opposite. Part of my brain is telling me that it was rewarding and if I had been more violent or if I am more violent in the future that the rewarding feelings will be greater. Which give me the animalistic craving.
I can honestly say that with what happened the other night I have never ever felt that level of anger EVER, never mind towards another human being. So that lets me know that I will not be thrust in to that uncontrollable state any time soon, hopefully never again.
That being said, having engaged in this I don't doubt that in a certain type of situation, that animalistic part of me would want to resort to violence in a shorter amount of time than previously.
Verbal or physical it is a negative action
Violence is a very negative action
Violence is like a physical incarnation of negativity. Let me give a brutal comparison of two violent acts and highlight similarities- I assume that a rapist gets enjoyment out of carrying out this act but the victim is left terrorised, mentally damaged aside from any physical repercussions. This could be compared to a physical assault where the assailant in many cases will get some levels of enjoyment out of it while leaving the victim physically and possibly mentally damaged.
Violence can be enjoyable for the violent individual. Depending on the severity of the violence the number people it affects will increase as severity of harm, poth mental and physical, increases. Take for example the violent assault that I suffered 7 years ago that almost took my life and changed the rest of it (Read here for more info) I was left in hospital for months being in critical condition for the initial weeks having suffered severe brain damage. To simply look at the number of people who were negatively affected by this was ridiculous amount. Obviously starting with all my friends and family then to colleagues and acquaintances, friends of family and friends who knew me or knew of me. Then to even people that lived in the area that had no connection but were just left with the anxiety something like that happening in their area. Obviously it didn't affect everyone equally starting with the most affected being my immediate family then family further removed and friends etc.etc.
It can feel like it consumes you
So violence is like a disease
As mentioned in the video at the top of the page violence spreads because normality for people.
I will use myself as an example. Since the assault in 2009 violence has become a big part of my life in the form of thoughts and I'm not talking about thoughts of being violent. Since this happened to me I have re-lived the events of that night numerous times, so many that I don't even wish to hazard a guess. I have also been very aware when facing problems because of my injuries and especially when frustrated that the root cause was violence. I have been living with the words violence and assault on the tip of my tongue for the last 7 years.
Combine that with all the violence on tv, in films, on the internet, in sport. Then add to that any violence that I experienced in my day to day life .I personally find it hard to think of a day that didn't go by without some sort of violence going on abiet just a reference or thought.
I do believe that my violent act the other day was heavily influenced by medication. But apart from that fact violence has been quite prominent in my life even if not in a physical sense too much since the assault.
I believe that had I not had the medication influence, given my outlook on violence that was developed from a young age as both my parents positively discouraged violence in a household that was exempt of violence, I would have been enough to vere me away from this violent act. Although I cannot be 100% on that given the changes in my brain since the assault. That has shown changes in me with regular verbal and physical (to inanimate objects) violence that were apparent in earlier stages of recovery.
Emotional violence comes in all shapes and forms
Violence isn't just physical
Violence comes in all shapes and sizes. The most common, in my opinion, being verbal violence. This is something I think that many people don't even realise.
For example, 'the boyfriend' to whom I was violent used to always go on about how he was not a violent person. I can maybe excuse him for punching me back when I hit him. However in the past I have witnessed him verbally assaulting people including myself when one time he stood mere centimeters away from my face and shouted at me about how he was not a violent person because he had never hit anyone in his life.
To be honest I would be lying if I claimed outright that I have never hit anyone ever before Sunday night. But if I have said that before I meant that I had never hit anyone fueled by anger, not from a double figure age onwards anyway. For example when I was around 10 years old I was forced into fight for 'fun' by another boy. I stood there for minutes too afraid to hit the other boy in the fight as he kicked lumps out me and screamed at me to fight with him. I stood with my fist clenched contemplating the idea of punching him until I swung and caught him on the cheek which knocked him to the ground, but after that I couldn't continue. After that he got back up and continue to kick lumps out of me until I started crying in a heap on the ground.
Alternatives to Violence
Back in 2012 I attended a course run by the Alternatives to Violence project. It is a worldwide organization. It was a very intensive weekend where we looked at every possible form of violence and then drew from our own experiences with violence and undertook multiple activities that involved various different tasks and group exercises. We also did group meditation and shared alot with one another.
The alternatives to violence project was created to be used in prisons in the united states, I believe.
I would recommend Alternatives to violence to anyone. It is a thoroughly enjoyable course with a group of people who you end up bonding with. The course is run on a non profit basis, for the cost you get fed for the weekend with coffee/tea breaks.
The course really helps bring all forms of violence to your conscious mind. While giving you different techniques to avoid using violence, as the name suggests.
How to combat violence..
The AVP course is a positive step in the right direction. Raising conscious awareness and sharing alternatives to violence.
The video at the top of the page however showed an example of anti violence protests. In my opinion this is not the best way to go about it. The protest still has the main focus on "Violence' so the protest is about violence. I think the answer is to focus on the opposite, which is what? Peace, passive, gentle, calm?
For example think about a child. If you put a jar with biscuits near them and tell them not to eat any the chances are that they will. The previous video is about Children sat infront of a marshmallow and asked not to eat it which will result in a reward of a second. But as you see temptation is too much for many of them.
Now violence is different but the principle is the same where we live in a world where we are surrounded by violence and experience it on a daily basis whether in person and/or through media and even in anti-violence protests that still focus on violence. These constant reminders and experiences are bedding Violence into our subconscious so when we are in whatever situation where violence could be used what is the brain going to op for? Whether you are consciously tempted or not. It is a temptation of something that is somewhat 'normality'.