I won't bother with too many personal details, maybe another time. I'm [early 40s], single, never married, no children, live on own, self-employed.
Not a complete train wreck, anyhow. He's leaving it a little late, but the raw material for self-improvement is there.
Are You Gamma: Part 1His gammatude is hardly difficult to understand. His paternal role model was weak and his maternal influence was strong. He has a normal male inclination for conflict-resolution through violence, but it has been inhibited by his upbringing. So, it leaks out in bizarre and inappropriate emotional outbursts. He's basically looking for a beating, not because he is some sort of masochist, but because he's never been forcibly established in the social hierarchy, and he's now locked into a pattern of turning to drink to free himself from the social inhibitions that have been instilled in him.
This relates to the first 7 points. Having a tendency to need to be right about something, also being forceful with needing to be right about it by getting louder or more threatening in body language.
Example 1 - In public house getting drunk, was with father at time. Something came up to do with war and pacifism, that sort of area. The guy I spoke to was ex-army although I don't think front line sort of stuff. I'm not sure exactly how it went but I think I ended up berating him over something to do with pacifism and how it didn't make sense what he was saying. There was no reason for me to get wound up I think I just wanted to impose myself on him, being right maybe is just getting someone to back down or submit to me? My father was trying to get me to calm down with body language. The guy just walked off eventually.
This ties in with something about my relationship with my father. Through adolescence he never came down hard on me, mother tended to have most of the control in that regard. Played darts with him from 16-18 and started drinking then. Would get very drunk, have blackouts and embarrass myself. While he would talk to me about it there wasn't anything that firm. Part of the problem maybe was I was quite polite and quiet when sober, and also slight in build. I think other people in the team/pub didn't say much out of respect for my father, I think I would have got hit a few times otherwise.
Two things I remember vividly about me and my father. One was probably a darts night, after drinking, where I must have been mouthing off to him. I think I was effectively belittling him, I remember he charged up the stairs and I was on bed and he had my arms down and was in my face, "is this what you want??!!" Thats the only time I ever remember him getting really angry with me. Maybe I needed him to stand up to me, was begging for it?
Was about 12/13. Boys down road (slightly younger than me) had knocked on door and run away so I went after them. As it turned out they had kicked ball over wall but it wasn't ours. I don't remember shouting but asking them why they ran away etc. Appears they told some porkies to their parents and made out I "pummeled" them . Given I was never within ten yards of them this seems unlikely! A hour or so later their father came up, my mother answered door. I'm not exactly sure what happened from there and whether the guy was getting aggressive or not but when my father came out as well my mother told him to go upstairs in the attic!! So he did. I think the guy just went and there was no trouble, presumably my mother was fearful of it escalating into fighting. Feel terrible thinking about that because it seems such a weak think to do. To go along with what my mother said and climb up the ladder into attic and leave her there.
And, like all struggles against inhibitions, when he temporarily breaks through them, he overdoes it.
Example 2 - Playing poker at end of night in pub with pool team mates, reasonably drunk. I'd been playing poker a bit online and was starting to play well enough to win regularly. Again I'm not sure exactly what occurred but it related to a particular hand where, to me, what they did was a sub-optimal play and they shouldn't be doing it. I may have been ribbed a bit for this which maybe stoked me up more. I then started a gradual rant which involved me challenging him to 20,000 hands as over that amount of hands I know I'd win (I'm not that good heads up so may have backfired). This quickly escalated. I said something else more personal not sure what, which got him wound up and it nearly came to blows although broke up swiftly.This is textbook Gamma behavior.
This was caught on pub CCTV and I saw it the week after. People joked about it and so did the guy involved who didn't seem bothered and was more concerned whether I would move on from it. I'm guessing grudge holding is classic gamma behaviour. One thing that stuck with me was that I was more bothered that the CCTV showed me backing away. It would have wrecked me if they called me a bottler or something similar. My behaviour up to that point was less embarrassing than the thought of being exposed as a weakling or cowardly.
I think I used to rant a lot when at home. Lived there till about 32. I don't remember ever being challenged particularly.
- Pick an unnecessary fight by inserting your opinion where it is neither requested nor wanted.
- Try to resolve the conflict in your favor by flooding the situation with verbal diarrhea. Gammas are like salesmen who think as long as they are talking, the customer isn't walking. But this is a short-sighted tactic, as eventually, the talking is going to end, and the longer it goes on, the less it convinces the other party.
- Back down when the conflict turns physical.
- Hold a grudge.
- Deny reality.
Here is my advice regarding the first part of his email.
- Limit himself to three drinks per evening. If he finds himself overly tempted to order a fourth, call it an early night and go home.
- Limit himself to no more than five sentences in a row without stopping and listening to the other person. The rants have to stop. They are immature and womanish.
- Go and apologize to the other guy. Tell him: "I'm sorry I picked a fight with you the other day. At the very least, I should have given you the chance to kick my ass after I did it. Can I buy you a drink?" That's it. No excuses, no rationalizations, nothing else. Learn how Deltas handle conflict. Learn to submit. Because then, when it's over, it's bloody well over.