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GhostWolf's Family History
Pink Floydd: Another Brick in the Wall
Abuse goes back to at least my great-grandparents generation on both sides of the family, and was inflicted and acted out in and on each successive generation. Where my great-grandparents learned to be abusive, I have no idea; family records make no mention.
My maternal great-grandparents were descended from Irish, Welsh, and Scottish clans; some of whom had immigrated from northeastern Europe many centuries before to flee the pograms, and came to the Seattle region sometime before the turn of the century. Great-grandmother ruled the famliy with an iron hand; my great-grandfather and their children were objects to be displayed.
The family was extremely matriarchal; her word was law, period. No one, but no one ever spoke back or disagreed; any thing that happened within the family stayed within the family; the family name and social appearance was sacrosanct, and god help any member of the family who behaved in any way that brought perceived or otherwise negative attention to the family.
Together, they had at least four children that I know of; all daughters. Two of them died in childhood from pneumonia that resulted from scarlet fever for one and from diptheria for the other.
My maternal grandmother claims that her father was a child molester. Conversely, no other members of the family have confirmed this statement.
Great-grandmother was - not surprisingly - a taciturn and withdrawn woman, and was heavily interested in the occult. My grandmother and mother have both shared how great-grandmother also resorted to physical violence when unhappy with them - beatings, hair pulling, and more.
Family silence was assured by the extreme physical cruelty. My aunt, grandmother, and mother have all shared their experiences at her hands.
Conversely, my great-grandfather was a very quiet man, a professional carpenter and cabinetry master who loved puttering in his garden in his spare time. My mother, my cousins, and I do not remember him ever raising his voice in anger or striking any of us, my maternal grandmother's statements to the contrary.
My maternal great-grandfather died when I was 11 years old; my maternal great-grandmother died when I was 18.
My maternal grandmother Sara was taken in very easily by Art, the suave and smooth-spoken man who became her first husband. Within a year, my grandmother had given birth to my mother, her first child - and at the same time, my grandmother discovered that Art was a "womanizer", a poor provider (using his wages for pursuing other women) and divorced him. This came out after my maternal grandmother had died - although she claimed that she had caught Art molesting my mother when my mother was two years old.
All the available evidence - events shared independently by my genetic mother, maternal grandmother. aunt, and events shared by my paternal aunts and cousins - leave no doubt my maternal grandfather Art and his brother Ray were active in a cult; Art was, as my mother and aunt have shared, was a satanist, and my grand-uncle Ray was a master warlock. Art's mother - my great-grandmother - died before I was born, but there was a much older women to whom Art defferentially referred to as "Mother", and whom I was ordered to refer to as "Greatgram", who was master black witch and satanist. My experiences, my sister's experiences, and the experiences of my mother at their hands leave no doubt. This is described in detail in the following biography pages.
After Sara divorced Art, she later married a truck driver whom all of us called "Pop". Together, they had a daughter, my mother's half sister. My step-grandfather grew up in a very harsh farming environment where children were but tools to get tasks done - and disobedience was met with beatings. He was well-trained that men do not show emotions, men do not cry - and men do whatever is needed to support their families - even if that means working one's self literally to death.
Pop was to a large degree monogamous and ethical; and a better father to my aunt and mother - and later me and my sister - than my mother's father Art. Sadly, it wasn't until many years later that it was revealed he was a child fondler - a child molester; touching only his own daughters and stepdaughters.
Children learn by watching; my step-grandfather was a major father figure in my life - and I watched him closely, never knowing until after the turn of the century that he was a child molester.
- My Mother
My mother remained with her mother when her parents divorced. When my mother was 14 months old (1932), my mother contracted acute tuberculosis, and was taken to a tubercular sanitarium. She was packed in ice to reduce the fever, and was not expected to live. She did pull through, but lived in the sanitorum until she was about 7 and a half years old.
When released from the sanitorium, my mother went back home to live with her mother and stepfather (Sara and Pop), and her baby half-sister. In later years, my aunt admitted that she was very jealous of my mother, and that their mother fueled the resentment in many different ways. During these years, her stepfather Pop molested her and her half-sister.
When my mother was 12 years old, her mother forced her to live with her father Art because my mother would not submit to Sara's concepts of what was socially correct - Pop, being a long-haul truck driver, was rarely home during those conflicts, and when present, rarely stood up for my mother. Thus, when Sara insisted that my mother go back to live with her father, Pop submitted - Remember, Sara came from an ironclad matriarchal environment. This and more will be detailed when my mother completes chronicaling her own history.
The environment with her father and stepmother was very violent; two of her stepbrothers constantly physically abused their sister, my mother's stepsister. Her father and stepmother were unaware of this; and her own mother and stepfather did not believe her - and she ran away from home when she was 16 years old. My mother ended up being placed in a juvenile hall several hundred miles away,where she did not divulge who she was. Eventually, the officials did discover her identity and notified her mother and stepfather, who picked her up and brought her back home - and beat her for running away from her father's home.
Not much is known by anyone in the family other than they were full-blood Choctaw on my grandmother's side, and nearly full-blood Cherokee on my grandfather's side. The few existing photographs reveal little other than they were American Indian.
At the turn of the century, American Indians - to put it mildly - were not treated as human beings. Those who could pass for white did; and as my Aunt on my father's side told me repeatedly, they did - hiding their Indian heritage from everyone.
My grandfather was not my grandmother's first husband - his brother was. When her first husband died in a farming accident, she married his brother; my grandfather. Thus, my father's oldest two siblings were not only his half-siblings, but also his cousins.
This side of the family was extremely patriarchal; the man's word was law. Women and children were possessions; women were to be "barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen", and children "seen, and not heard."
More details of their environment are provided in the article I wrote and posted called "What If?". A member of the online support group had asked:
"How do you feel you would have turned out if you
had never been abused? What and who would you be?"
My initial response - made after careful thought - is chilling in and of itself.
- My Father
My father was the late-life and last child of my grandparents, who absolutely adored him. My article "What If?" gives a bit of information on how he was raised.
He was already an alcoholic at age 16 - as were his sisters - when my mother met him. Other members of the family have shared that he was spoiled by my grandparents and allowed to do what he wanted; he was the last-born child, the baby of the family, and the only male, the last male of the family line. There were no others after him.
When he was 18 years old, an event occured that shaped the remainder of his life. His sister Maudy's husband had burned to death in a car accident, and my father had to identify the body - and from that point on in his life, my father had an overwhelming fear of death that colored nearly everything he did; for example, if he wanted to smoke his pipe or drink some coffee while driving, my father would pull off the road completely, smoke his pipe or drink his coffee, and resume driving only when he had finished.
Shortly after meeting my mother, my father and his sister became close friends with my mother. One of my father and aunt's activities was to grab a few six packs and a whiskey jug and get drunk together.
My maternal grandmother Sara hated my father - none of the men my mother and aunt introduced her to were good enough for her daughters because they were "poor white trash". In all the years I knew her, when only family was around, I never heard her refer to my father or my cousin's father by their names - they were only "that man". Sara referred to them by their given names only in public. Over the years, Sara did everything she could to split up the marriages of her daughters - one example was that Sara claimed the reason my paternal grandparents had moved from Oklahoma was because my father had impregnated a girl in Oklahoma when he was 14 years old - and that my paternal grandparents subsequently sold their farm and moved to California to escape the consequences. Conversely, both of my aunts - my father's sisters - repudiated that and stated my paternal grandparents moved to California because the dust storms wiped out their farm which they subsequently lost to the banks. I believe them, because they've shown me the records of the farm and some of the bank papers.
My father was, not surprisingly, violent. My earliest memory of him was him hitting my mother so hard she flew across the room and landed in a chair - all because she had dared to discipline me.
Severe dysfunction and abuse were present in both sides of the family; converging with devastating results as described in the following pages.