My Story 2016

Not My Fathers Son…???

Yes I am still around, I sometimes wondered whether I would ever post again on this site but the stress’s of life reminded me that I was never too far away from chucking my toys out of the cot and that there was always going to be something to write about.

Since I last posted in November 2017 I have continued to work in my current role as a policeman.  I’m back to full duties which means I can now speak to members of the public providing I’m not wearing my straight-jacket.  I’m still popping some lunatic pills that keep my mood on an even keel and providing no-one tells me how useless I am I can get through a 40 hour week without smacking someone in the gob.

I was released from the shackles of Waitemata Mental Health a few months ago although I have continued to see my psychologist who over the past year has guided me towards some sort of normality.  I have had extreme support from my wife, family and friends and without them I’m not sure I would have got through the past few months, so here I am, riddled with sarcasm and looking forward to putting pen to paper in an effort to keep whoever reads this stuff amused and informed.

Not My Fathers Son…??

That’s not quite correct……because according to my mother I am my father’s son. My chromosomes confirmed that when his characteristics morph through some of my behaviour’s.

I didn’t really get on with my father as a youngster, and I don’t mean we argued, to be honest I was very scared of him.  Our household revolved around the mood my Dad was in when he came home from work and as a result I was always on tender hooks.  I always got the feeling that I never quite lived up to his expectations as a son and that trickled down through into my teen years and into some of my adult life.  I’m not saying he was a bad father but some of the things he dished out would’ve got him arrested today…..I was a particularly easy target….why….because I was stupid.

That all being said my Dad was a strong driver of my values today and if it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t be here now and we have had a number of good conversations about what went on when I was younger.  He made alot of admissions to me a few years ago and apologised for some of the stuff he put me through.  I know that was hard for him and I admired him for it and those conversations gave me some insight into what went on with him when he was growing up.  My Dad got me into sport and and encouraged me to fly the coup at an early age….something I did at 18, at the time I was very thankful for that advice.

Over the past few months I have been thinking about some of the stuff that happened to me as a youngster and with my psychologist tried to work through how that may have impacted on how I see myself.   How I see myself and, how and what I measure myself against are some of the key issues that pummel my mind into submission.  Why am I so insecure ?

Back in the 1970’s I was watching my father get to the workings of a 1970 Morris 1800. It was British crap but you couldn’t tell him that…he was still getting over the fact that he was now stuck in New Zealand with a useless son who didn’t measure up to his expectations….a Morris 1800 was the one link to a country he had longed for since he first set foot in New Zealand in the 1950’s.

Morris_1800_1970Dad was working on this excuse for a motor vehicle and he wasn’t making headway on the problem he was trying to fix. He was getting angry and previous experience had me worried about what he was about to do. I didn’t want to be there but I thought better of walking away because I knew what would happen….apparently I was some use to him and it was his way of doing some form of father/son bonding.  For me it was torment as I was shit scared and I knew that if I made a mistake while he was frustrated then there was only one person who was going to feel it. He asked me for a crescent, or an adjustable spanner….whatever you want to call it.  I wasn’t really listening and handed him what I thought he wanted…..it wasn’t and well that was it. He lost his temper and he clocked me around the head with the back of his hand in frustration as his patience wore thin. He didn’t stop there and laid into me like I was some sort of dog who had just eaten the dinner off his plate.   It was a moment in my life that I have remembered and just one of many that contributed to the birth of that little person in my head who keeps telling me I’m no good.

The point of that little story was that it was a regular occurrence for me when I was growing up…I never felt good enough….no matter how well I did,  it was always the things that I did wrong that were driven home to me….and today that’s all I concentrate on, what I do wrong.

Since my close look at life a couple of years ago I have been more aware of what the world throws at me and have realised just why more and more people suffer from mental illness. You just have to look around you. There is always someone telling us we are not good enough, we are too fat, too thin, under-trained, over-trained, too experienced, under experienced, too old, too young, too ugly, too good-looking…its just on-going and that’s just in the police!!!

Currently the police are going through a culture change, it’s about being PRIMED with the right values. They are good intentions, and they sit well with me because I joined the police with those values but its like having them forced down my throat like some goose being forced fed corn for the purpose of feeding the fat cats their Foie Gras.  In our case it’s so we can cut ourselves open and show the politicians what we have done to stop Crimes Act offence’s being committed in police bars….its beside the point that 99.99% of police staff aren’t assholes.

We are now being treated to the Police High Performance Framework (PHPF) and in fairness it’s not a bad piece of kit if you can see through the hype thrown at us by the Steel Institute. It’s all designed to change our mindset and get policeman to operate in a transformational environment rather than a transactional one……we still have a ranking system because you need that to cover the inadequacies of some of the people who get promoted, but, we have done away with a lot of things that now make us way more inclusive and that means we will be better cops ? Of course this is all according to the experts at the Steel Instititute who, lets face it, have lined their pockets with tax payers money by telling policeman how useless they are and that we should all aspire to be like the All Blacks. Well, maybe I don’t want to be an All Black and maybe I don’t want to advertise Good Health Tumeric supplements when I retire. Maybe I want to make a useful contribution to society and not sit in a tattoo shop for hours getting my life journey tattooed to every part of my anatomy and, maybe I just might use toilets for what they were designed for !! so please don’t try and tell me All Blacks are role models…..they are just good for business……I digress…let me take my tongue out of my cheek.

As I said earlier in this post all of this sort of stuff is good and in some respects its the first time the police have given us something we can use outside the job.  But, for someone like me it can have me questioning what I had been doing for 30 odd years. Don’t I have good values, am I not a good boss, have I got police work all wrong? Nope….but in my world it gives that little man my father put in my head an injection of steroids and allows him dictate all the other passengers on my bus. !!  Until the next time…..

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