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Friday, April 9, 1999

Walked - 4 miles

I've been reading "I'm Dysfunctional, You're Dysfunctional" by Wendy Kaminer today. So good. She brings out so clearly that both self-help books and recovery groups depend on the same mechanism that religion does. You have to give up your WILL. This is one reason I had so much trouble with religion. I used to read all the self-help books and had the same trouble with them.

I would get depressed, though, and buy another book because the idea that all you had to do was think right and everything would be ok is very seductive. I finally quit smoking when I decided to quit and stuck with it. I chewed nicotine gum and ate like a pig, but I didn't depend on some mantra to do the quitting for me. I didn't depend on some group to do the quitting for me. I had to quit.

It's not society's fault I'm not a highly paid executive, it's because of the choices I made, whether good or bad. I choose to not put in the effort and time to become a highly paid executive. I choose to have children and raise them which lessened my ability to put in the time and effort to move ahead in my career. I choose to read books I enjoyed rather than books that would help me climb the ladder of success. No one made me.

No one made me smoke. I chose to. I enjoyed smoking. I really, really enjoyed smoking to the bitter end. I finally quit because I was tired of spending the time and money and putting up with the hassle that smoking entails, not because I hated smoking. I also wanted to live a little longer.

I chose to quit college. I chose to take the easy way instead of sticking it out and getting a degree. No one made me quit. My family certainly didn't want me to quit. Even though this was the 60s I didn't quit to smoke pot and protest. First of all, I had never smoked pot and only did a few times several years later. Secondly, there wasn't a whole lot of protesting going on in Oklahoma, and certainly none in the fundamental Christian circles I was in at the time. I didn't quit to get married. I wasn't really dating anyone at the time. I was just tired of going to school and didn't really think of the consequences.

No one made me marry my husband. I chose to. One reason I chose to was because he took charge so well and I was tired of making decisions. Well that was a mistake. I realized that I preferred to make my own decisions, I just didn't like taking responsibility for the consequences. I knew he was a critical person before I married him but I called it decisive, because I didn't want to not get married. I wanted to get married and be taken care of. No one made me.

Looking back it's sad how many bad decisions I made because I thought it would be easier. I suppose most people prefer to take the easy way, and it's so easy to justify it. It's so easy to take the easy way but it is our choice. The "recovery groups" take the responsibility for these choices away from us. We're told it's not our fault. It's just a disease. Garbage.

I made a lot of good choices also, but you don't see support groups for good decisions. You only go to support groups for the bad decisions.

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Rachel Aschmann 1999.
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