Blog Posts

Lack of round-table discussions

My siblings have very much seen themselves as being children of their mother and since I was not part of the circle and perhaps also because I found my father to be a better role model, I have tended to see myself as being outside of that circle. But, also and more specifically, my rights as a human being have been consistently denied to me; so I was coerced and had relatively limited choices.

The idea that I was mentally-and-morally ill may well have developed as a justification on the part of the subfamily for being able to work around my decisions and opinions on matters and so that they could pursue this mother-centric position. But, as a parent, my mother had responsibilities as to my wellbeing which did not empower her to exercise neglect; to have done so for the alleged greater good would have to have been a eugenics-inspired concept. And I believe that is a fair description of what I have lived through.

Another strand to the story is how Dennis Wheelton came to have changed his name to that form and, also, the logistics to the arguments that were held that he should have been able to inherit from my father as the other children had. That name change was imposed on my father (if that is the grammatically correct way of putting it): my mother and her father were involved in the process of ratification, it seems. I observe that, since I was an executor of my late father’s will, it was down to me to make a decision on whether it was possible to say that my father had ratified the name change, and I was not able to do that. In fact, the will was clear enough as to his wishes.

There are very close to six thousand words of content on these two sites and, also, there is my book. And I don’t propose at this time to extend matters to the point where an entire family saga is written or, indeed, rewritten. Indeed my objectives are limited to correcting the false impressions that wider members of society may acquire from the funeral announcement for my mother as it was earlier published and without my having been consulted. Unfortunately, also, the urn of my mother’s ashes was placed in a coffin which was buried, also, in my father’s grave. And, I find that to be out of keeping with my perception of how the family story had unfolded.

A cousin has tried to set up round-table discussions. But I don’t think it will surprise the reader if I say that it has been impossible to gain any in-family acceptance of my views, and I think I am extremely aware that my acting in a solo capacity is not the best approach. At the same time, however, I have to live with my life and all the stresses imposed by being an outsider within such a dysfunctional family; and I do not think it to be right that my father (and his memory) was disrespected so much.

On hearing of the brain CT scan results

I was in hospital subsequent to a heart attack in July of 2017 and had had a stent fitted in a blood vessel supplying heart tissue. Back on ward, I reported that my speech was going slurred; and the doctor on duty insisted that I have a scan of the brain because a release of a blood clot and a resultant stroke could not be ruled out. In the event, there was no evidence of a current or ongoing stroke.

There was, however, evidence of historical brain damage. And, my curiosity was not sufficient reason for a neurologist’s report to be commissioned. That would only happen if there was any mental health aspect that could become better understood; or, if I was taking psychoactive medication and an expert’s report was required for that sort of reason.

But, of course, within my family environment during childhood, adolescence and later there were disturbances to my wellbeing; and it was the more general pattern that my mother would deny having responsibility for my wellbeing, claiming that she was entitled to have little to do with me. I did have a stammer and early-years learning difficulties and, in turn, my siblings became hostile and abusive toward me. Clearly, my childhood development pattern was unusual both because of the evidence of the brain scan that was now available and my mother’s earlier attitude toward me.

I don’t really think in any case my mother would have cared, even if the brain damage information had earlier been shown for her. She seemed to present that all that she did that was patently neglectful was absolutely correct, in the manner that she was some sort of autocrat coping with the situation as then known to her. There were many weird conspiracy theories that were invoked to account for my difficulties and I presume with hindsight these were mainly concerned with how she would navigate her life as a lesbian and simultaneously try to keep that matter as some sort of secret. It might be said that she had that bigger problem to attend to. Subsidiary to that endeavour was, of course, her endeavour to try to demonstrate to the other of my siblings that she was in all senses a conventional mother.

On being told that clinical news in my hospital bed, I was very much aware that I was exactly the same person I was one month earlier. But there are these other implications about the person that my mother said I was, and there is for me this life-journey aspect of getting a better handle on how I should address my reevaluations of these wrecked relationships. Clearly, for example, I was not as weird as I might have thought; and, clearly, my life journey had been made all the more complicated.

One year on, and there was been a whole host of directly-medical issues for me to address. But who knows really what new discoveries there might be; I would say, though, that I presume that the challenges can be coped with. Obviously, there are many layers to this; and there remains a marked difference of opinion between me and my siblings about whether my mother was entitled to disown me as she did or to be as moralising as she obviously was.

De facto, I am as separated as ever. But I guess the conspiracy theories are now largely debunked. Clearly, also, a mother does not have to bond with all of her children.

Since Writing My Book…

It’s about two and a half years, and I have needed to reconcile myself to advancing old age and examine my bucket list. Plus, I have humdrum stuff that needs to be done. And I guess self-advancement topics of interest change as one gets older; certainly, two periods of hospitalisation in this time have contributed to the additional steps that I take to look after myself.

Sorting out the “fake” funeral announcement that was published for my mother has now risen up my list. And, for me, it faked stuff about the relationships that my mother was entwined in; and set out lots of wrong stuff about the family set up. There is a certain cosmetic licence that I think we tolerate at times when we celebrate someone’s life. So, I have to kind of watch my step if I want to go on the record with my objections.

I guess I would have been most happy If I had had some say in that announcement and one option that would have made me much happier would have been if my name were not listed with those of the other children of my mother. Doubtless, my siblings had their own reason for risking my wrath in deciding to do as they did. And that I guess is the reason why the cat has been set among the pigeons, so to speak.

So, given that I have to watch my step, the project of polishing both content and presentation on this website has come to the fore as an item on my bucket list for being checked off on. And, yes, I have had to polish up on my website building skills.

About My Writing Experience

Writing a book is only likely to be easy if one has a degree in English and is versed in literature and, to some extent, also the world of publishing and writing. In my own case, I had a stammer which took many childhood years to overcome; and I had a hard time at school, which was not helped at all by my fraught home and family life.

Whether it is particularly relevant, necessity can be said to be the mother of invention; and my early misfortunes could only be overcome by engaging in some sort of struggle. So — whether these comments are relevant or not — these impressions of myself and where I thought I was going were a driving force for me.

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost springs very much to mind, also. For one makes various choices for whatever reasons and one’s life gets shaped by them. The life journey kind of takes on its own character and that contributes to who one becomes… there is something of a mystery to the fate in it all, I think.

I know I am being a bit circular here, but it is I think true that one arrives at each new potential turning point and is somewhat obliged to make a choice.

And, yes, my writing the book was a big venture for me. Particularly so, because it entailed unravelling what actually happened to me in my early years and overcoming a few taboos, too.