Jun
08

Adult Victims of Child Abuse Still Need to be Heard

By

misuse of power “Child abuse damages a person for life and that damage is in no way diminished by the ignorance of the perpetrator. It is only with the uncovering of the complete truth as it affects all those involved that a genuinely viable solution can be found to the dangers of child abuse”. Alice Miller ~ Banished Knowledge ~ facing childhood injuries

Lately I have been writing a lot on the subject of dysfunctional family systems. I feel like I am just getting started when it comes to sharing about some of the things that were so dysfunctional in my own family. The dysfunctional mother daughter relationship I had with my abusive mother was only one part of it. I had an emotionally unavailable father as well. There was sexual abuse and physical abuse. I was not heard or even seen as a child ~ as though I was not really a person yet. And that “non person” fact seems to be at the root of everything; the discounted voice and disregarded feelings of the child. We live in a whole world of adults who have not been valued as children but who are expected to function properly in spite of that.

When I was “in the fog” which means not understanding exactly why some of the details about these situations were wrong, but having this “feeling” or suspicion that they were wrong, I could never put all these “facts” together and therefore I was never able to see the real truth. When I first started this blog “Emerging from Broken” I was afraid to share too much, I thought it would turn people off.  I afraid that I would be seen as a whiner, that I would be seen as someone who was “stuck in the past” and unable to “get over it” and that I was somehow deficient in putting the past behind me, EVEN though I already knew that the way that I recovered was by facing the past, realizing the lies verses the truth and changing my false belief system, I was still scared of rejection and of being unheard and misunderstood. (because that was ALL I knew!) I was afraid that I was “wrong” even though this truth was what set me free. I was especially afraid to talk about the dysfunctional mother daughter relationship stuff and dysfunctional family stuff.

In hopes of contributing to the “greater good” of mankind, I pressed on and took the “risk” of being pooh poohed and even rejected, because deep down I believed that others could relate and that I could make a difference with those people.  I figured I would deal with the rest when it came up.

I was also afraid that people would write comments sticking up for the abusers and controllers.  I lived in a world for such a long time where the abusers were protected and the victims were to blame, that it took a long time to sort it all out.  Kids like me were raised with an “unquestioning respect” for authority. Half the problem with my recovery was that one issue! I could not go against that deeply ingrained teaching especially when it came to my parents. I still feared the same consequences that I feared when I was a child. I feared that I would die if they rejected me.

I was pretty confused. It isn’t that we don’t live in that same world now but the difference is that I no longer believe that abusers SHOULD be protected and I no longer discount myself.  I do not acknowledge that false system anymore. It is backwards and I am not afraid to speak out against it.

There is no excuse for devaluing a child; there is no excuse for mistreatment, there is no excuse for abuse. And respecting authority that is causing harm against children and causing them lifelong damage, is insane. I don’t want to live in that insanity anymore.

The world has to realize that children are born totally innocent and are born equally HUMAN with equal value and equal human rights. Children are not property; they are not objects. The damage done to them is NOT imagined by the child and it is not forgotten by the child. Even if the child blocks it out, the damage is there, lurking and festering and causing all sorts of problems and struggle for the person that it happened to.  It is not okay because it happened “in the past”. It is not excusable. The abusers ARE the ones who are accountable for that damage; the guilt and shame belong to them and the only way for an adult child who grew up with abuse to overcome the belief system that manifested because of that mistreatment is to realize that first of all, it really happened no matter how many times we have been told that we dreamed it up or exaggerated it and then secondly to understand that as a child, we were powerless and have NO responsibility for what happened. Those two things set me on the right road to emotional healing.

And I needed to talk about it. I needed to be heard, but not by the abusers.

I had no idea that the more I shared about this kind of family system dysfunction and confusion the more popular my blog would become. My mother daughter dysfunctional relationship articles have been read thousands of times. They rank very high in search engines and are among the most read blog posts here in EFB. There is a reason for that.  I found out that millions of people struggling with depression, addictions, post traumatic stress, self harm issues, dissociative identity disorder and many many other issues also struggle with this same confusion around the dysfunctional family system and the accepted protection and “respect” for the “authority” who is so often the perpetrator of abuse and emotional mistreatment instead of regard for the child victim.

But WE were those child victims…and we still need to be heard.

Please Share your thoughts.

Exposing Truth, One snapshot at a time;

Darlene Ouimet

The Emerging from Broken book is ready for download! If you find that the subject matter I am writing about resonates with you, get this book today! This 197 page, downloadable, printable, live linked e-book will put you on the fast track to healing.  Get yours here through the upper right side bar or click this link~ Emerging from Broken The Beginning of Hope for Emotional Healing

Shanyn Silinski published a great poem (click title)~ “How Many Stand Silent” on her blog Scarred Seekers

Please click on any of the highlighted titles to read those posts and or to follow the links to Alice Miller and her book “Banished Knowledge ~ Facing childhood injuries”

 

 

Categories : Family

118 Comments

1

Dear Darlene

REading your words about your fears in sharing about your experiences on a blog and the fear of what people might say or how you might be labeled are my fears at present. .but seeing your courage gives me courage to share .. too.

I agree its the abusers who should be held accountable but so too the enablers..those who said “shhh.. don’t say anything” . .Those who saw and knew and heard the cries and kept quiet.. I am sharing how I was silenced at 6 about s/a and warn of triggers..

I feel so many of us have been scarred very deeply because people in our faith system knew of the wrong and told us “shh” and that “shh” for some us was carried on for so many years..

**Triggers: Religion..Sexual Abuse**

Bless me father for I have sinned

( my confession to minister at 6 years old)

Bless me father for i have sinned
and am not old enough to confess
but need to tell you something
that has filled me with ugliness
will you father listen to me
for i am still hurting deep inside
Mom and my brother hurt me badly
and i cried and cried

What did they do what did they say
you dont need to be here
you’re not old enough to know right from wrong
but tell me about it dear
Well father its like this you see
mom and brother did something to me
mom was holdng me while brother hurt me
and made me want to wee.

what do you mean by all this you are saying
stop talking this nonsense
i want you to go tell god your sorry
and that is going to be your penance
dont ever speak of this any more
and if you do God will be very mad
you must never talk this to anyone
or you will be very bad

I left the church wondering why
god would be so mad
when i was hurting inside so much
that it made me feel so sad
but i couldnt talk to anyone
or i would be called bad
so i carried my secret home
feeling worse then i ever had.

(c)joy

I never questioned ministers . they were like god
so when they said shhhh it was like god saying shh which said
god didnt really care that i was hurt at all..

I know its all lies..but am still tring to come to grips of how many years i kept quiet because i really really believed in what i embraced as faith

joy

2

wow, seems i am going to be digging in areas that i have left alone, i so enjoy reading what you have to say darlene, usually because it sounds like i wrote some of it.
one of the hardest things i had to come to terms with was that my maternal grandmother wanted to abort me before id even drew a breath, then when confronted about it denied ever doing it. that was one hell of a nite, i was about 20, and struggling with what was starting to comeout. and my mother was getting married and had invited her mother, someone i had little contact with as she didnt like us, we were below her because of who my father was. nothing so strange as family is there. to my grandmother i was not worth anything, never. gosh how i hated her for her judgemental view of me just because of what my mother did. mmm any way i had to learn not to take her indifference to heart, she was as critical of my mother so it was to be expected really. i learnt to see that her not knowing me was her loss cos i was a good friend to people and cared deeply about things i didnt always undrstand. when she died it didnt matter to me at all, the only thing that hurt was that my mother had to fight for a share of her mothers estate. a subject that still splits my mother n her sister. the way she raised my mother and her sister was totally diffferent. my mother the scapegoat the sister the gifted child. and so it continued. i cannot stand brussel sprouts because of that woman, she sat me at a table for 5 hrs with 3 sprouts on my plate, even though i had told her i wouldnt eat them and not to put them on my plate. she even gave me them for my breakfast the next day, i was about 7 yrs old then. mmmmm grandmothers and be a bitch, yet my paternal grandmother was the salt of the eaarth who had so much love, which was strange seeing how abusive her early married life was. she always tried to protect me and loved me no matter what. i think it was her who gave me my compassion and understanding of others, shame i cannot use it so well on myself

3

Joy your poem just broke my heart. Carol your grandmother’s sound like mine.

Darlene, thank you for this post. For so many many years I was told to shut up, don’t embarrass anyone, don’t say anything. I was pressured into thinking I was bad, wrong, dirty and was misunderstanding a ‘compliment’.

The whole mafia atmosphere of ‘shut up’ was carried into my adult life until I set some boundaries. I’ve not heard from them in months but I don’t fear the phone or emails anymore either. I’ve lost friends on FB but were they friends at all? I’m not sure of much except that I’m healing, I’m moving on and I’m loving this life without all their stuff dragging on me!

Thanks for sharing my poem link, and thank you for being an inspiration.

4

Shayn

Thank you if you would like to read others.. let me know i can pass you the link on f/b

ps .. it broke my heart when it happen and still breaks my heart..
love your poetry as well..keep writing. .

5

Darlene,
“I was also afraid that people would write comments sticking up for the abusers and controllers. I lived in a world for such a long time where the abusers were protected and the victims were to blame, that it took a long time to sort it all out. Kids like me were raised with an “unquestioning respect” for authority. Half the problem with my recovery was that one issue! I could not go against that deeply ingrained teaching especially when it came to my parents. I still feared the same consequences that I feared when I was a child. I feared that I would die if they rejected me.”

What you said here is so profound because this is the essence of the abuse working…I also never questioned authority and I was mouthy…so, when I did, I was punished and belittled until I shut up. The problem about you fearing you would die if they rejected you was so real for me as well but the ironic part is I was emotionally dead because they had already rejected me so many times and therein lies the deepest of all pains as a child…knowing they don’t accept or love you as you are.

6

Hi Joy
Yes, the enablers are also abusers. Many of us bare deep scars because we were silenced, and this was a huge part of the devaluing, often the worst part to have to cope with. That people ignored it. there really is no excuse, and I had to set all that aside to heal because I kept trying to understand all of it. But what I needed to understand that most was that it was all wrong! (the reason that the shush carried on for so many years is because we carried the fear of the consequences of telling with us long after there was real danger.
Thank you for your poem ~ this is very very often exactly what happens. How horrible for a child. How disgusting that he could not and would not deal with it. He let you down and he has to live with that. And now you get to tell, finally, and emerge out of that darkness filled with all those lies.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Carol,
It is so important that we get all of this out!
Thanks for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Shanyn,
Lovey comments, so exactly what happens. All that oppression, suppression, and lies about our worth as human beings.
So glad that you are here and I I love that poem, hope ppl. go to read it!
hugs, Darlene

Hi Jenny
I remember when I first realized that they had rejected me long before I ever drew one boundary. I was shocked to realize, stunned really. I felt like I had been punched and left breathless… I wanted to argue, but I couldn’t argue with the truth and the facts anymore. Devastating for a child (even an adult child) to realize that.
Thank you for sharing,
Hugs, Darlene

7

Joy, your original post made me think about something I posted on the FB page for Overcoming Sexual Abuse today.

“After a report of abuse from a church member, ‘the church elders’ stated that the bible said that something had to be witnessed by two to three people for any actionn to be taken against the person. That made me so sick! As is stated, abusers seek out every opportunity to make sure they have no witnesses. How is a child supposed to feel supported by people in a position of responsibility to take action against wrongdoers when they misquote scripture to protect the abuser?”

Your post made me think of how the abuser was protected. I was discouraged from telling and letting them handle it and am sure the person hurt other children.

8

Hi Darlene

indeed scars so deep ..so saddening..so embarrassing. and only he and she, god and the minister knew. and the minister was protected by his seal of confession even though i was too young and god he cannot make appearances in court as god is not allowed. and she and he. well they definitely wont testify against themselves althought he has brought it up on calling me on the phone last christmas.. no more calls will come from that way..

I feel so so terrible inside for what happened. i didnt understand what was happening but i knew was hurt not just by my bro but by her.. and she had her instrruments of hurting. .. I feel awful that it happened but cannot undo it but will spend my life healing and some day being a voice for others too .

HI Ronnie..

The bible is always ready at hand by those who should use it for good but choose to use it to support their crimes. i always thought i was chosen to do some kind of penance by god that i was chosen to suffer .. why i didnt know but when the preacher said i was to say sorry for tellng . i thought in my little mind.. wow even god thinks i should be hurt . so i must have to suffer all my life. after all God can do anything He didnt stop it. He spoke through the priest and told me to be quiet about it all.

I know its all lies now and fog and bad theology but i didnt know all this till this year. i have been so long in the dark and fog.

We all know of the many crimes that have been done undercover of religion ..

🙁

joy

9

my mother was taught by catholic nuns in the uk in the 1960’s she says it was bad, not as bad as others though. i was lucky by the ttime i wanted to persue religion i found kind caring people to show me, as it had nothing to do with my family, church times were happy times for me. no hell or damnaton, just acceptence and love, ooo how i craved that love. but not enough not to fall into bad ways in rebellion to my home life. abuse of power of any kind can lead to so many scars for so many different reasons

10

It took a lot for me to share my story, and after doing a discussion or presentation on the topics, I still get migraines. It’s as if the abuser is in my head and punishing me for telling, 30+ years after the heinous attacks. Writing under cover of personal journal is one thing, but going public via blog or book is another. It takes the courage to face fears, a compassion for self and others, and a conviction to tell the truth. My world gets smaller of family and larger of friends, and that’s a good thing because there are members of the family who still would rather alienate me and associate with the perpetrator. Reaching out by breaking the silence becomes part of a greater good. It took me a long time to catch on to the Bible being manipulated for convenience but not truth.

11

Thank you for posting this. This is where I am at in life. I started a blog in January but I fear how much to disclose. Little by little I feel myself breaking out of a shell. 2 years ago when I was introduced to facebook I couldn’t imagine being so public about anything and it totally frightened me. Little by little I added friends and started posting status updates. Two years later I have long a million miles, I started the blog. Now I took another step and started my page “Rays of Hope for Survivors of Child Abuse and Sexual Assault”!! I was instantaneously hit with anxiety, so many STRANGERS!! After 4 days now I am relaxing and I know it will be okay….but I still struggle with how to share my whole story in my blog…. I love people and sharing my life with others seems to be what brings me so much healing and freedom. I love having this page, I feel like it has given me my wings.

12

I have had this rootless wound for so long, it’s very hard to acknowledge there ARE roots! Especially since I tried so hard to erase all the roots. Knowing that the damage came from outside is a big help, as I have so much shame over this wound like it’s my fault, I did it, it’s my ‘bad’. And that’s what you mean about festering.

Things that stop me talking about it and dealing are also how old I am… I’m too old; I should be this or that (have a house, job, car, family) all ‘perfect’… Every time my life has gone away from that ‘perfect’ I felt shame. And yet now I can see how my mother has her version of ‘perfect’ that I can never live up to without denying myself, I’m permanently inadequate because I never approach that ‘perfect’ or her standards and that reinterated time and again even in small ways makes my self esteem go really low. That’s just one thing I’ve noticed looking through the truth grid. In the past I’d try harder and harder, then I’d give up trying then I’d try again…each time denying my true self, pushing and corralling my true self into some semblence of other’s ‘perfect’. It was never good enough and I got the impression people disdained me also for not having the strength to simply ‘be myself’ like they evidently could. Being myself is challenging not least to this dynamic or power over and control. It’s a fundamental form of disrespect that’s disguised as propriety I think. Like an elaborate pretense, manifested in clean houses with ‘perfect’ decor, ‘perfect’ meals, social occasions and ‘perfect’ lives and called ‘love’. When love is a rare feeling indeed.

I’ve also been ashamed and tried not to show how ‘imperfect’ my life was and has been, or is. This has also stopped me from talking, dealing or placing responsibility. I think why should I place responsibility for that now, when things are so different? But I know from reading your posts that seeing through the ‘truth grid/lense’ would lead to ‘freedom on the otherside’ and it has been. Right now I still feel the shame but know I’m not stupid. I still dissociate but know much sooner that I’m doing it and can figure out many times WHY I’ve slipped away.

I have begun to connect up the dots. How an event now can precipitate the exact same feelings in me I have from other earlier events because it mirrors them and my ‘un-truth grid’ or fog misinterprets things as my responsibility, or my ‘fault’. It’s amazing what I take personally. No wonder we as trauma victims carry the world on our shoulders – we literally do… Especially if we have been blamed or told we’re useless in anyway even an inferred way.

I feel like something else that would help me become free is to ‘put the world down’ and to focus on what is within my control. I think another way I dissociate is to get lost in the world, in things which reflect my own suffering as some kind of catharsis. It’s like a cycle of feelings I choose to go on, not necessarily always healthy, but perhaps a way of grieving too.

13

Now that I’ve uncovered this as one of the major issues in my adult life, I am still invalidated by my mother who is now 80 years old. In her opinion, I should be able to “just get over it” and continue as if nothing has happened that threw the lid off the pot, so to speak. Well, NO MORE!! In order to finally find some happiness and inner peace, it is necessary to reconcile the pain and suffering of nearly 60 years, of having been under 6 primary caregivers by the time I was 3 or 4 years old – of having been made to feel that I didn’t matter – that “I” didn’t even exist except to do someone else’s biding. “Children are to be seen and not heard” was the unspoken mantra. Add to that, emotional deprivation with no showing of affection – no words of comfort and/or love, no simple hugs, only the presence of stoicism and ignoring one’s feelings no matter what they were. No wonder a child grows up to be out of touch with themselves and has no idea of what different emotions feel like much less being able to express and/or show them!! Ugh!

I am so grateful to have found you, Darlene, and everyone else who is or has been in the same place so as to have found understanding and support in this difficult and painful journey to wholeness!! Thank you for sharing your story and for providing a venue by which others can help each other to do the same!

14

Ronnie and everyone,
This makes me sick too. It is so twisted and when I came out of the fog I realized that so many things are sick and twisted around so that other people can be manipulated and controlled.
The “stronger” people get what they want, and they get protection for what they have done… it is a crazy system.
The only way that anything is going to change is if WE heal and realize how wrong that all is, so that we don’t pass on this way of thinking (the cycle of abuse) to the next generations.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Carol,
You nailed it when you said that the abuse of power of any kind can lead to so many scars for so many different reasons! That is exactly what I am talking about… it is time to realize that what happened to us as children was the misuse of power and it had nothing to do with us, but it certainly had huge negative results ON us!
Thanks for sharing Carol.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Lynn
It really does take a lot of courage to talk about all this stuff. It takes a lot to get “the abusers out of the head” as you put it. It is crazy how people take sides with the perpetrator, I wonder about how much fear that they have themselves to choose to take that stand.
Thanks for sharing here Lynn
Hugs, Darlene

15

Hi Dwyanna
Welcome to Emerging from Broken!
I still have not shared my whole story and I have shared a lot of things that I never thought I would as time goes by. I have a whole list of things that I am going to share when the mood strikes me to write about them. I figure that it comes out when I am ready or in my case if I think it might be helpful for my readers. Everything that we share, makes a difference.
Congrats on your new FB page! I understand the overwhelm! It can be exciting to get recognition and it can be just as scary as the old belief system kicks in. (I had to ask myself “what happened in the past if I got “recognition”. It was never good!)
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Louise
Yes, it is SO important that we finally realize that the damage came from OUTSIDE of ourselves and that the shame is not ours. So often i think that our parents version of perfect (for us) is about what they don’t have themselves, or could not achieve themselves.. and it is projected on us as success or failure. The thing is that it is also used to control and manipulate and always used against ~ to invalidate. You mentioned being ashamed and trying to hide how “imperfect” that your life has been. That shame is a result of all the other shame. (which at the root of it was never yours to begin with) When I looked at the layers of how it all began, with someone else’s shame being heaped on me, and then it was just added to, until as an adult I felt like a failure about everything, never realizing where the root of it came from in the first place.
Thanks for sharing Louise ~ GREAT comments!
Hugs, Darlene

16

Darlene,

I think my parents view all people as objects to be moved to fill their needs. As a child, I was an object that belonged to them and if I failed to meet their present need of me then there was no choice but to throw me out. I think it surpirses them that an object has such deep feelings and those feelings are an afront to them. Objects are seen and not heard and always available to the user. I wasn’t very good at being an object. I failed my parents because I feel deeply, I talk back, and most recently, I don’t respond well to manipulation. I don’t live to fill their need so they have no use for me anymore. Their disreguard for me began when I was a child but continued throughout my adulthood. For a long time, I thought I could make them see me as a person but I could not. They are partially blind and see others as ‘trees walking’. They are no more abusive to me than to anyone else. I just had the misfortuned of being their child and more available to them.

It is a good thing for victims to speak up and find their strength. It is a good thing to call evil, evil and place the blame where it belongs. It is not unloving it is the truth and the truth heals. It has the power to heal the abused and the abuser but generally, the abuser feels that they have no need of healing. I am healing and becoming strong enough to pray that my abusers recognize their need for the healing that comes from truth. I can do this because I am winning the struggle created by their abuse. No matter what my parents did or the men who finished raising (also as an object but most specifically a sexual object) me did, I am fully human. I am able to see and appreciate each individual, not through the eyes of my need but through eyes of love. No matter what was done to me, I did not resort to becoming like my abusers. No matter how much I was told that I should be someone else, I have ended up being fully me. It is a tremendous blessing to have myself. I am free.

17

Hi Ingie,
YES!! Exactly the message that I am trying to deliver here! I have to highlight what you have posted ~ I want make sure it gets read.

Ingie Wrote “Now that I’ve uncovered this as one of the major issues in my adult life, I am still invalidated by my mother who is now 80 years old. In her opinion, I should be able to “just get over it” and continue as if nothing has happened that threw the lid off the pot, so to speak. Well, NO MORE!! In order to finally find some happiness and inner peace, it is necessary to reconcile the pain and suffering of nearly 60 years, of having been under 6 primary caregivers by the time I was 3 or 4 years old – of having been made to feel that I didn’t matter – that “I” didn’t even exist except to do someone else’s biding. “Children are to be seen and not heard” was the unspoken mantra. Add to that, emotional deprivation with no showing of affection – no words of comfort and/or love, no simple hugs, only the presence of stoicism and ignoring one’s feelings no matter what they were. No wonder a child grows up to be out of touch with themselves and has no idea of what different emotions feel like much less being able to express and/or show them!! Ugh!”

NO wonder a child grows up out of touch with themselves… YES Thank you so much for sharing this truth today!
hugs, Darlene

18

Hi Pam
Another brilliant comment! You have also said some profound things Pam. I can totally relate to this, what a profound way to put it! I am going to highlight part of your comment too!

Pam wrote: “I think my parents view all people as objects to be moved to fill their needs. As a child, I was an object that belonged to them and if I failed to meet their present need of me then there was no choice but to throw me out. I think it surprises them that an object has such deep feelings and those feelings are an affront to them. Objects are seen and not heard and always available to the user. I wasn’t very good at being an object. I failed my parents because I feel deeply, I talk back, and most recently, I don’t respond well to manipulation. I don’t live to fill their need so they have no use for me anymore. Their disregard for me began when I was a child but continued throughout my adulthood. For a long time, I thought I could make them see me as a person but I could not. They are partially blind and see others as ‘trees walking’. They are no more abusive to me than to anyone else. I just had the misfortune of being their child and more available to them.”

The rest of your comments are also excellent ~ YAY for being FULLY YOU! ~ so readers, please go back and read the whole thing ~ comment # 16 !

This post is generating some of the best comments that I have had on EFB! So much insight. Thank you so much everyone!
Hugs, Darlene

19

Darlene, this so fits for me. Last night I was just working with a memory of my first known sexual abuse at the hand of my uncle. He was an authority figure so I didn’t know that I had any rights to say no to his hand in my panties or to the fishing trip and rape that happened the next day. I didn’t know that my body belonged to me only. I wasn’t given the knowledge that I could say no to what he was doing. I wasn’t asked if I wanted to go on the fishing trip with him the next day. I wasn’t asked if I wanted to go home with him for the weekend.

I didn’t have any value as a child in an adult’s world. I was supposed to do what I was told and be quiet. I didn’t know that I could tell anyone what he did to me. I didn’t think anyone would listen or believe me if I did tell on him.

My feelings in the matter had no importance at all. At the time, I remember escaping into the house for a few minutes that first night and arguing with myself as to whether I should go back outside where he was sitting in the front yard in the dark. I remember thinking that if I didn’t go back out there that his feelings might be hurt and it wasn’t okay for me to possibly hurt his feelings. His feelings, because he was an adult, were more important than mine. I am guessing that I learned that from both of my parents. I had no value as a child.

20

to me acceptence was all that mattered then and i would bend over backwards to get it, not now. thanks to the light you have shone on my ideas of how families act towards each other and how hard it can be to gain identity that is not tainted with the problems our parents and other abusers placed on our shoulders, i am a lot closer to coming out of the fog as you call it darlene. today i admitted i have issues i ned to address that havent thrown me into crisis as i wont face them and that is weird for me. i usually wait till the poison of my past bubbles up and bursts through destroying me for a while til i can see how badly i was treated and it really wasnt my fault. this has happened a few times in the past and usual before a big revelation about my past triggered by present events. this wanting to deal with my unworthiness and self destructive patterns so i can go forward is a new phase in my healing , well i think anyways. i am struggling with expectations and personal goals in relation to my furthering my studies, but if i still feel intimidated by strangers and situations is it worth me trying. all this self doubt comes from the way i was ignored, yet expected to succeed amd punished for doing my best/ and it was the reason i stopped trying acadmecially as a child and if i am not careful will stop me again now

21

I appreciate what Pam wrote about being an object. When I was 23 and in a psych ward, I wrote: “a Neil Diamond song played on the tape recorder: “I am, I said, to no one there, and no one heard at all, not even the chair.” My interpretation of the lyrics evolved into: I am a chair! I am an object! A memory formed as corporeal as that contained under the influence of truth serum: Could that really have been my big brother using me as an inanimate sex object? I am a chair! I am an object! I shoved the ambiguous memory down just as quickly as it had floated up.” It took me another 2 decades to excavate that my brother had raped me. The incident(s) with him using me as a chair, forcing his well-built adolescent physique upon my petite pre-pubescent body, illustrates the activities of “grooming.” He tested: how much could he get away with? What would it take to make me scream? Could I push his full body weight off of me? Could he get past my cries for relief? He was victorious, and went on and on and on. Thus, the awful results of “children should be seen and not heard” and the objectifying of kids as possessions and pawns. He had already learned that I was an object, as he had been. I’m not fully me yet.

22

Lynn,
I think objectification is a coping mechanism. I say this because of what I am going through trying to graple with the sexual abuse I endured as a teenager. Teenagers are right on the line of childhood and adulthood and sometimes, it is difficult to decipher where responsibility lies. I thought I was responsible until I was 50. I carried those horrible memories (my introduction to sex)silently all of my life. Now that I realize what happened, I can’t feel anything toward those men who raped me multiple times a day, every day, for over a year. I think I have objectified them in order to live with those memories. I really want to feel mad at them but I just feel seperate and indifferent. I think that is how they felt when they used me. The difference is that they put that objectification, as my parents do also, into action. Instead of being a victim and being hurt, they decided to use and hurt. I don’t know why and even if I did, I couldn’t fix it. It does help me to understand what motivates an abuser and know to stay away from them. It also helps me to know that I’m not like them.

You’re not a chair, Lynn. You are a living, breathing human being with every right to control your body and enjoy your own individualism. Your bother is the deficient one. He can’t tell a chair from a sister.

23

Darlene, this blog touched me and make me cry reading all the storys
of the abused forgotten childen .my father and mother always said you are to be see not hurd , such powerful words to break our sprits
those words cut right to the bone . I am trying to heal now that both my parents are gone , I never dreamed thier deaths would sturr up such pain i had burried so deep inside , my mothers been dead now a month and its so strange i felted the same relief as when my father died 16 years ago , i dont miss her i feel nothing for her its not love its not hate just emptyness . my grand mother told me i have to honor my father and mother i cant hate them . oh yeah .my foot i feel nothing for her that shes gone . i feel so guilty for not feeling the love for her . i am just empty . i give her back the love she gave me nothingness .

24

Pam, you’re right, I am no one’s object anymore. Karla, my father committed suicide many years ago. I felt nothing but relief. Since then, I allowed myself to explore his legacy of pain, but at the time, I was only 18 and just felt relief. That did not stop me from looking behind the bushes to check if he was stalking me, dead or alive. My mother is dying from Alzheimer’s and cancer, whichever gets her first. I can’t help but think I said good-bye to her long ago. I certainly waved good-riddance to the phrase “children should be seen and not heard.”

25

Darlene, your work here is so courageous and invaluable. You have made a huge difference for me, helping me see through the lies and finding a way forward through self-validation and realising I was not to blame. I feel like I’m being reborn, and I thank you for having the courage to go beyond those fears and share your stories.

Same goes for everyone who posts in the comments. It’s moving and inspirational reading everyone’s comments and knowing that our hurts and fears are real and significant. I find comfort in the commonality of our experience. It’s healing reading everything on this blog and thinking: “Yes, YES. Me too!”

It’s the first time in my life that I have felt understood, and it goes a long way to healing that shameful, worthless, “non-person” feeling that haunts me. 🙂

26

Karla,

My parents are old now too and I wonder how I will react when they die. “Honor your parents” is something I stumbled over also and spent many years trying to honor them in the plastic way they everyone expects. It was a lie though and did not come from the heart. It ended in a big mess. One of the things that motivated me to confront them was to honor them truly and decided the best way to do that was to confront them with the truth and give them one last chance to honor me and make things right between us. They rjected that chance and rejected me as well but I am at peace knowing that I have honored my parents in a truthful, from the heart way.

I also feel nothing most of the time when it comes to my parents. I’ve been hurt so deeply that I’ve had to numb it out. Sometimes, I think that is the way they feel about everyone. They use people in whatever way necessary to survive and I don’t think they’ve ever had a healthy, close relationship with anyone. They put nothing of themselves into anyone and in the end, they receive nothing in return. Manipulators and abusers out manipulate and abuse themselves in the end. I guess that is justice but it all seems so needless and sad.

27

Hi Patricia
Thank you for sharing this ~ so many survivors are afraid to even remember details like what you have shared here, especially the details about thinking his feelings would be hurt if you didn’t go back outside. It is so important for everyone to realize that children treated without value, really don’t KNOW that they have any choice. It isn’t a mistake that we make, it is a training that we got. What you are talking about was what I found all messed up at the roots of my belief system. Thanks so much for sharing Patricia.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Lynn
I had an association with that song too. I can also relate to a memory floating up and to me squishing it down just as quickly. And I know that some of my depressions were the result of not being allowed to have those memories; being told that I was a liar, and not having a voice. All of it eventually was too overwhelming.
Thank you so much for sharing your truth here. There are so many survivors who can’t speak of family related sexual abuse the way that you (AND Patricia have just done. it is so empowering and permission giving when we do it. Thanks
Hugs, Darlene

28

Hi Karla,
Welcome to Emerging from Broken,
I am so glad that you are here. I think that it is painful when our parents die because with them goes the hope of ever being loved by parents that way that we longed to be loved. My mother threw that line at me about honour mother and father, I agonized over it for years. I don’t like it when scripture is used to control and manipulate ~ those statements were taught like the law. BUT I ran across a verse one day about Jesus asking people to follow him. There was a man who said that he had to bury his father first. Jesus said “let the dead bury their own dead” and he talked about not letting anything get in the way of following him. My mother and father are spiritually DEAD. What they did to me all my life caused me to be so messed up that I couldn’t EVER have understood the bible for myself and I was brainwashed to think that THEY were the real god. and I kept hearing that line… let the dead bury their own dead. I have no guilt anymore. The guilt was something that was taught to me by them. It wasn’t mine in the first place. The never had any kind of working faith; they just used that stuff against me. I had to find my own, just like I found my own value and took my life back.
I am glad you are here. (p.s. I rarely go off on bible verses; don’t let it scare you! lol)
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Carolyn
Thank you so much. I am really glad that you are finding some comfort here!
I felt like I was being reborn too… I totally relate and if seems to fit to call it that! \
Hugs, Darlene

29

Pam, 16,
Your post reminds me of something that I have wondered. For all of these parents that devalue their own children so, to WHAT are THEY pledging their allegience that makes the devaluing of their own children SO natural to them? And I don’t think that fact that they were devalued in their own childhoods is the WHOLE answer to the question. In my life, I observed a marriage without love and with FAR too much focus outward mostly on the people that made up their church AND on the screen night after night. Not surprising, that as I approach age 48, I have little use for both, and consider them entertainment at best…

But think how devalued the almighty church and the almighty elite on our TV screens actually make them/us feel?

30

Pam,
22,

you said:
It does help me to understand what motivates an abuser and know to stay away from them. It also helps me to know that I’m not like them.

Ah yes, the self-serving nature of an abuser, and the need to reccognize that and not project your own nature onto the abuser.

this is why I posted John Gatto Taylor’s letter to his grand daughter yesterday, seven points for her as she approches college.

“5. Mirroring: Have you learned to be everyone as well as yourself? Can you be a chameleon at will? Or are you trapped in your own tight skin the way little people are? Can you fit into every group, even a group of your enemies, opting in and out as you please, yet remaining yourself?”

It helped me to recognize their nature, and reading Lundy Bancroft’s Why Does He DO That? which is like an entire encyclopedia of abusive behaviors, opened my eyes wide six-seven years ago, that I was not causing the abuse; he was choosing the behaviors, that set me free to be a separate person and realize my value.

31

Pam,
Honoring others with the truth…love that!!

32

Abuse is a lifetime sentence with no chance of parole.The punishment by law should be the same for the abuser.With the greater glory of us going to Heaven to receive what we were denied here.And for the abuser to receive eternal death.Only then i think will justice will be served.
Enablers,i’m sure there is something special waiting on them.

33

I think all people have a need to feel they can talk about whatever they want…and most people feel free to do so without questioning themselves or being worried that someone will try to silence them or judge them or that they will get “in trouble” or “rejected”. It’s just that as survivors of childhood traumas many times done either directly by the parents, or not stopped by the parents, or ignored by the parents (ignored whether “intentional” or not), we grow up feeling differently…that we should be quiet and protect others and fear what others think about us. But the truth is we don’t need to protect others adults from the truth and that most people don’t judge us the way we were used to in childhood and if they do it is their problem, not ours. In fact, those we are most worried about probably know more of the truth than we do. It is them who want the silence so they don’t have to face the truth…it is just tough for those who have been taught silence in order to protect those who were supposed to be protecting us…it’s twisted. For me, it just took practice at saying what I want even though I may be terrified and seeing that I mostly got support, except for from the expected few, which is sad, but empowering.

34

Kate,
My parents didn’t go to chruch when I was growing up. That came later. However, there was always some group of people that my Dad was trying to impress. Both of my parents mistake admiration as love and that is what my Dad in particular worked for. Everything with him is about being the center of attention and gaining admiration. The devaluing, I think, was to keep those whom he ‘loved’ at a level lower than himself so that he could control them. He devalued my mother most of all and my mother devalued me. He assigned certain roles to all of us and even taught us that we were part of him. I was the scapegoat. Whenever they did something wrong, I was the one to take blame so that the family could continue. Shame was assigned to me as neither of my parents can cope with their own shame.

I don’t know why my Dad is the way he is. His parents, my grandparents, were wonderful people. I don’t think I would have had any tools for survival without them. My mother also, seemed to come from a fairly happy, loving family. I think it is more the way that my Dad and Mom chose to deal with trauma that caused them to develop their personality disorders. It seems more of a character disorder to me. I have little hope of them ever getting well as they can never admit to themselves that they need help and they seem to have no ability to look at themselves honestly.

35

Wendi,

Isn’t that enlightening? And it took me years to figure this out?

“those we are most worried about probably know more of the truth than we do”

36

Kate,

It was wonderful for me to realize that I was not ‘part of someone else’ with no value outside of serving some other. There is nothing so valuable as one’s own personhood and self direction. Boundaries are a miraculous discovery when all of your personal boundaries were trampled before you even know you should have them.

37

Pam,
thanks for that description of how your dad needed to admire and be admired. The “mutual admiration society” maybe not exactly what you said, but that is what it makes me think of. It is good for me to hear that this took place apart from church, to see that it goes on everywhere, and I’m sure that it went on outside the church even for my dad. It always seemed to me that my dad could break down any group, even a “group” of two people into the good guy and the bad guy, the ugly and the beautiful, the winner and the loser. Guess how many kids in my family? There were just two of us. I’m glad you had your grandparents the way you did. My two sets were both not as present as yours. Dysfunctional at best on the one side, and both husband and wife dead on the other for me. So lots of phantom pains, longings, and questions for me about many things that will remain unanswered. But it is nice to feel like i am really married this time, for this last three years. i am married to someone that I can FINALLY tell my stories, the awkward memories of me while i was an only child until age 5 , all of my stories, and he does the same, so we hear each other and that is good.

38

Hi Pam,
You describe my parents when you talk about your parents. (“they put nothing of themselves into anyone” ) (although both my parents present themselves totally opposite from each other, and the way that the devalue me is also opposite from each other)
Great comments
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Yvonne
Yes, abuse is a lifetime sentence. The general attitude about children and how they are regarded is what needs to change in all of this.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Wendi
Great comments Wendi! It is crazy how many of “us” there are though.
Thanks for sharing!
Hugs, Darlene

39

More and more, I am beginning to care less and less about what the “expected few” have to say about MY truth!

40

Lynn!
Well said! That is exactly what it takes to keep going forward all the way! My truth is MINE and over the years in recovery, I owned it more and more. I don’t doubt it at all anymore, and I don’t care at all that some will say I am wrong. They don’t get to say anymore!
Freedom is so much better than anything I had when I was defined by them!
Hugs, Darlene

41

Darlene,

My mom serves my dad. That is her purpose to the point of apologizing for him when he does something wrong while also refusing to apologize for her own wrong doing. She expected and still expects me to do that. The emeshment in my family was extreme and devaluing to everyone involved. Some of it was purposeful but much of it was just a kind of mindless evil that perpetrated itself. As their child, I was made a part of their mental illness and it took decades for me to escape. I thought I was the one that was sick. I think that according to my role as scapegoat, I was bearing the shame of their mental illness. I was sick as long as I remained in my assigned family role but now that I’m out from under, I am fine.

It is so complicated, I’m not sure what I just wrote even makes sense. I don’t have the right terms for it sometimes.

42

Pam,
No matter what you call it, the great thing is that you know the difference betweeen being free and not being free and you know which to choose.

43

Pam,
This makes PERFECT sense to me. I understand and relate to every word of it!
Your comments are absolutely fantastic Pam.. great highlights and additions to what I am talking about in in this website. Thank you for sharing!
hugs, Darlene

44

Darlene,

This article is so wonderful…It gives me courage to keep going and not to give up to speak out abt the abuse I went through. Every time I try to talk abt it to my family my parents tell me “You are acting like a victim again…I know you like acting like a victim” and my father completely denies ever hitting me. It’s completely incomprehensible to me but it makes me doubt my emotions and I always feel embarrassed talking abt it. This has gotten me to the point where I actually feel embarrassed to be alive. It’s a horrible feeling. I have been plagued with chronic migraines (had a head injury when I was 14 due to gymnastic accident) this past year and hence had to move back into my parents house which makes it even more difficult. I really just want to be heard and validated and feel like I deserve to live…Please reply…it would really help

45

this blog is so healing and so comforting and Darlene has inspired me in so many ways..as have each of you here. you are all inspirational to me. I am just beginning .. but i know some day I will be strong and couraggeous like all you (hugs)

Joy

46

I agree with Joy. Hugs to both of you!
My adult son, who was previously both understanding and protective, has spent a bit too much time listening to his father’s entire family, whose collective hobby is trash-talking about anyone not in the room.
The last time I talked to him, in January, my son said he wanted to have a relationship with me, BUT the past is the past, and he doesn’t want to hear anything else about the rape, beating, humiliation, and stalking that caused me to flee in the middle of the night. He said it’s over, and if I can’t accept that, he can’t accept me. I told him I had one question for him to ponder, which was, “If someone raped, beat, spat on, and said horrible and untrue things about your wife, would you ask her to sit down to dinner with them because a certain amount of time had passed?” Of course he wouldn’t. He’d tear them apart with his bare hands, which is the right way a husband should feel about his wife’s abusers.
My son has now deployed to Iraq 3 months ago, and we haven’t spoken in 6 months. I pray that he will take time to reflect on what was discussed, and realize that all the approval his father’s family can possibly give him, and all the lies they can tell about me don’t change the facts, including the times when HE as a teenager pulled his father off me to prevent a rape or further beating.

47

Great post Darlene … I could so relate and it actually reminded me of my blog post of today at: http://www.sweetlychosen.wordpress.com. We do still need to have a voice, and we need more than anything to be validated. Validation aids in healing and knowing we’re not the ones who are ‘crazy.’

48

Thanks for this post. My ‘dysfunctional mother daughter relationship’ has really been the most difficult thing for me to work on, much less ‘get over’. She was so abusive. All my life, I felt this unhealthy need to please her. I do not mean to sound cold, but it has not been until recently, with her passing in 2009, that I have felt “FREE”. I think it was one of the reasons I could not begin to heal. Now, finally, I feel like I can blog (even if it is anonymously) and say whatever I want to say. I have felt so much shame because she was one of my abusers. The control she had over me carried through until I was about 51 and I finally put a boundary with her…and it was such a stupid thing…all I did was say that I would not be going ‘home’ the day before Christmas Eve…that we were going to start our own ‘tradition’. You could have sworn I had kicked her in the stomach. But, I stuck to it! But, it has been so hard for the ‘little girl’ to overcome the longing for a mother. So many times, I would cry and cry in my therapy, ‘I want my mommy’. Yet she was one of the ones that hurt me so much. It can still be so confusing.
Sorry, I am rambling! Anyway, thanks for listening. I woke up at 4:00 am and this is what is on my mind!!!

49

@Laurie ..

My heart goes out to you . ..I am hoping some day your son comes around.. how lucky he is to have a mother who loves him. How terrible it is what you have gone through.. Some children like parents cannot face the truth I think because its so painful. How much pain you carry, Laurie; I cry with you 🙁

joy

@Nico:

I know how you feel wanting and crying for mommy. You cried ” I want my mommy” and I too cried the same and still do. I want my mommy.. I want a mommy. I wish I knew what it feels like to be loved by mommy. My mommy had different ways of loving me ..ways that left me hurting and afraid and silenced and shamed.

I cry with you Nico and hold out to you a box of kleenex. and wil stay awhile with you in the early mornng and cry with you too. I know the feeling and understand it so well. I hope you don’t mind me commenting since I too woke up with tear on my cheeks.

Joy

50

Dear Joy, I do not mind you commenting at all…in fact it helps to know that someone else had a mother that was not nice to their child. It has kept me so conflicted…that need to run away in fear, yet still yearning for her love. I do not see this ever going away.

Thank you for the comment.

51

Hello Nico.. if it wont go away how do you see we will handle it if the emptiness and void will ever be with us?

52

Keren,

when you said:

“This has gotten me to the point where I actually feel embarrassed to be alive. It’s a horrible feeling.”

I thought/wondered that you are living too close to them, not enough space.

“I have been plagued with chronic migraines (had a head injury when I was 14 due to gymnastic accident) this past year and hence had to move back into my parents house which makes it even more difficult.”

I did this at age 42 for few months and then in the same little town for about 5 years. Makes it a whole lot harder to live free of this stuff.

“I really just want to be heard and validated and feel like I deserve to live…Please reply…it would really help”

If your situation is like mine, I’ll speak for me anyway, I felt invalidated all the time around them. The only real answer was to get away, or ignore, invalidate them because they are invalid in the ways that they treat you. What options do you have of going somewhere else, changing your diet to help the migraines, seeking out alternaive healthcare for that condition, etc., I am just brainstorming…

53

I feel that “ashamed to be alive feeling” when I think of the way my parents treated me in early childhood, for one thing, and I am reading Alice Miller’s For Your Own Good, Hidden Cruelty in Child-rearing and the Roots of Violence, and I discovered some more of those feelings when more memories were brought to mind. And oh, the anger that I feel!! Also, living with my parents again as an adult brought up FLOODS of those memories and feelings, to the point where when my dad got verbally demeaning and abusive, I just got very emphatic (in front of my daughter,) and demanded, “STOP calling me stupid! I am NOT stupid. I do not need to be told when I can and can’t talk on a cell phone. I know how to work.” I never would have dreamed that I needed to talk to him that way, but i discovered over the next few years that the problem was that I didn’t talk to him that way soon enough in my life, and that is why I had so many other problems. A friend I had at the time observed that when lived with my parents how depressed and sluggish I was, but when my parents went out of town for a week, I got SO much done, and this was with my four children living with us. The week my parents were gone, I got a job, I was upbeat and positive…etc/, and my friend was very clear on describing the difference to me and that was helpful to me.

54

Hi Keren
Welcome to to Emerging from Broken,
It is very hard when parents are responsible for the abuse and they deny ever doing it and then to label you as a victim is like another slap. The motive behind those kinds of statement is to make you doubt your memories and emotions. Which is really about them, and a reflection and truth about them, not about you. I am so sorry that this all happened to you. We all want to be heard and validated, but what I had to learn was that I didn’t need to be heard and validated by the abusers! I needed to be heard and validated by someone who understood, who believed me, and was supportive of me. That was when the real healing began!
Hang in here with us. There are many blog posts here that might help you see the way the misuse of control and power works, and help you to find your way back to better health.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Laurie,
This is so hard and I understand, especially when it comes to one of our own children. We can’t make anyone listen to us or understand us. This is very painful but it is true. If he can’t face talking about it, then that is what he has decided. What I have found is that I needed to be heard by people other then my abusers, and other then my family who did not want to hear me. I have a lot of impact with people now that I am healed. But the way to healing for me came when I gave up trying to be heard by the one’s that either refused to hear me, or (as in the case of your son and for whatever reason) could not hear me. I know that this comment isn’t much of a comfort to you. I was torn between both my parents for many years. I listened to a lot of lies too. I had to come to my own conclusions in my own time and your son will too.
Hugs, Darlene

55

Hi Nico
I can really relate to this comment. My mother is not dead, but when I stood up to her I was met with that same reaction. And I remember when my husband and I wanted to put our kids to bed on Christmas Eve ~ breaking the tradition of going to his parents house for Christmas Eve… but we wanted them to come to OUR house. They didn’t want to, and I was so hurt that they were not willing to bend a little so that we could have happy rested kids on Christmas day. I never realized the power issue back then, I just could not figure out why the heck they didn’t want to come to OUR house that evening.

Joy and Nico
About wanting a mommy, yes. That is such a huge part of all this. I longed for a mother who would just accept me. I grieved over the fact that I didn’t have one and then accepted that I never would. I fought with myself for wanting that mean mommy to love me. Why did I put up with it?? Why was it so hard to just let go? This is all part of the process of coming to terms with the truth though. I know that for me I found a LOT of brainwashing at the roots of all those feelings. I didn’t get that mommy, and today, finally it is okay. I am okay.
Keep hanging in here and keep sharing!
hugs, Darlene

Hi Kate,
I can relate to your comments ~ I also had one of those blow ups saying “I am not stupid” and in therapy I spent some time on realizing that in fact I was not stupid. It turned out that deep down I believed that I WAS. Brainwashing. I too found that I being around people who oppress me is exhausting and that when I got away from them, I had a lot more energy. (breathing room) Thanks for sharing this Kate. One of the things that happened to me is that when I stood up to my mother, she withdrew. This was how I was “trained” so I knew NOT to stand up to her and I didn’t do it much for fear of her walking away from me. I didn’t draw much of a boundary in the end ~ at the first serious one, (the first one where I spoke with confidence) she walked. But I found freedom soon after.
Hugs, Darlene

56

What to do when your abuser died and you never found the peace of knowing he would be punished, I feel as though I will live in hell forever with no reprieve. He died a natural death though he died a thousand times at my hand in my mind. It is all still unresloved, I could tell no one he was sexually abusing me from the ages of 6 to 15 when I married to get away from him starting another life of lies and divorce until I can’t hide it anymore, what to do when you can hold no one accountable because they are gone from this life and I am still that sexually abused child though I am a grown woman. Who is accountable now?

57

Welcome Sissie
I have written a lot about this in the pages of this site. I didn’t get my healing from anyone admitting or being legally accountable for the abuse that I suffered. They are still accountable alive or dead. Nothing changes where the responsibility lays. Healing for me was not about “them” anymore. I first of all had to hear me. (sounds like you have that part down) and I have to validate myself. This was a very big part of healing for me, to really validate myself. Then being heard by someone who understands ~ NOT the abusers or anyone who sticks up for the abusers, or minimizes the abuse we suffered. Those people are INvalidating. I had to realize the difference.
I encourage you to read more of the blog posts here. I have written a lot about how I recovered and we have a growing community here in the comments. There is a lot to overcoming, but know this; freedom and wholeness is possible.
Glad you are here!
Hugs, Darlene

58

Tomorrow will be so very hard for me and not to have anyone to share with is so very hard.. moms are suppose to be there to catch you tears. not cause them . Am trying so hard to be strong but am not ..I can’t shake off my emotions and have no where to turn with them. . …I had a mother who wants me not and a father i knew not . am in a little whilrlwind of emotions. today. I tried hard to get away from it but its all over tv, papers. even school 🙁

today i am a little somber
at the approach of father’s day
wondering who is my daddy
and whether he’s far away
some say that my father died;
others say he’s is still living
some say he was very kind
and others that he was giving

It puzzles me in my heart;
why didnt my daddy stay?
was it because of my birth
that he chose to run away?
I won’t ever really know
but tomorrow is the day
when people honor fathers
in a very special way

Who then should i honor
when tomorrow comes to be
who to do i say thank you to
for being a father to me?
I wonder how it will be
to celebrate father’s day
knowing mine never stayed
but chose to run away

59

Hi Joy,
Fathers day and mothers day are tough times, I understand. For me I had to realize that having parents never made me “valid”. So many of us are stuck there. My father lived in the same house as me for 12 years, but he was emotionally absent and unavailable. Today I realize that I might as well have not had a father. BUT none of that matters when it came to my recovery. Having one or not having one, his absence was about him not about me. It doesn’t define me. They don’t define me anymore. I do not allow it. Getting away from it is not the answer, we have to live in the world. The answer is in realizing that no one else and no situation, defines YOU.

Thank you for sharing your poem. I know that this is hard, but I also know that when you get past this pain, there is freedom just over the other side. Hang in,
Hugs, Darlene

60

Hi Darlene

Thank you for your kind words..the hardest part is friends who ask and dont know everything . so “what are you getting your father for father’s day; are you going out ..” etc. .its then .. or when you see the flyers. or walk in the stores and see the specials. .I know it shouldn’t define me . ..hopefully I get to that point of not having it affect me emtionally..like you are so strong.. am sorry for feeling sad.. I have been going pretty good but then i thought about the holiday and got myself thinking too much.. i wish i were strong as you . i know some day i will get there..seeing you gives me hope. .thanks for being there.

Joy

61

Hi Joy,
Don’t be sorry for feeling sad. It is important for us to validate our feelings.
I am a big advocate of all things true. What if you say to people who ask “I don’t have a father” or “I never knew my father”. If they want to know details they can ask. You can decide what you want to tell. This process is about establishing YOUR value, (mostly just for you) and that is the truth.

What i am trying to communicate to you is that not having a father does not define you.
Hugs! Darlene

62

HI Darlene: you are so right. and thanks for your kindly advice. I understand .. what others are or have done does not define me. I will work on trying to understand better what does ..once I get past Father’s day .thank you so much.
hugs
Joy

63

Hello family:)

I am struggling with this:

Why do we (the victim) feel embarassed and ashamed for what happened to us? Why do I continue to avoid to no end seeing them, why do I sneak around and not be seen, why do I carry the hurt..

I wish I could stand tall, stand proud in the knowledge that I did nothing wrong, that I have always been a perfect child and that something horrible was done to me, how sad for me,the little girl.

I see time and time again women cowarding in shame and embarassment..

Any ideas out here??

Blessings to you all,
Lee

64

Hi Lee,
I have written a lot about this ~ the WHY we think the shame is ours. Because they put it on us. This is why I talk so much about the belief system; because it is formed through the abuse and the ways that it is not taken care of. So we (as children) draw our own conclusions. And we draw them out of our need to cope, and need to survive. As adults we need to figure out what those conclusions are, so we can change them to the truth. That was when MY shame and guilt lifted and can forever stay where it belongs now. That is the process.
Hope that helps.
Hugs, Darlene

65

joy,

I felt the same when my dad’s birthday roled around, and then mother’s day. Don’t be ashamed of having normal longings for a normal parent/child relationship. I know it all hurts.

66

Hi Pam

Thank you so much for your kindly words of support..its somethng I have not been able to get over yet….Knowing that the rest are acceptable even to my stepfather ..and me not.. is hurtful too ..
I am sorry Pam you suffered during holidays..

thank you again..

joy

67

Hi Everyone
Thought I would mention the new post “When Leave well enough alone involves crimes against Children” I am still on the theme that the adult child STILL needs to be heard.

68

Kate,

your words are so kind. I really appreciate you help. I am growing stronger and hope that these migraines will go away soon. Unfortunately exercising and eating well does not eliminate them. I am currently on a medication that seems to be working well so I am really excited. I am hoping to get a permanent job and be more financially independent so I can get out of here. It’s just difficult because I have these medical issues in the way. You are right I am too close to them but this blog really gives me the courage to at least emotionally disconnect from them.

Darlene,
“The motive behind those kinds of statement is to make you doubt your memories and emotions”
You are so right…this helps me see the situation in a different light. It’s really difficult because they tell me they care about me so much (which I can’t deny because they do financially provide for me) but then they try to protect themselves rather than attend to my feelings which makes me so much worse. I am just so confused. I feel I will stick to being emotionally detached from them because because I can’t live denying what happened to me for their sake. Thanks for your kind input,

Keren

69

Is it normal to have angry feelings one day and, then the next, feel like the abuse never happened to me? That’s the way I am with almost every experience I’ve ever had, and it’s starting to get on my nerves.
I feel that exact same way about what5 happened to Eric. If you asked how I felt, I’d have to say “Well, sometimes I feel like it just happened yesterday, other times I feel like it happened a long, long time ago. And, still other times, I feel like it never happened at all.”
What the hell IS that? Other than one of the things people in my family pounce on, like an overly hungry cat desperate to feed, and tell me proves I’m lying about the whole thing.
I never got this far with my therapist; but, if you think I should wait until I have a new therapist before answering, I’ll understand.
Thank you.

70

Well, since somebody mentioned having an ‘ashamed to be alive feeling,’ I feel like I should take the opportunity to mention that, for the last nearly 10 years, I’ve had a nightmare of exactly those feelings.
It’s still happening almost every night, but it’s not about my abuse as a child-that I know of-it’s about my former husband dying in the World Trade Center. In the dream, he’s always looking right at me, but never notices I’m there, and he keeps repeating the same question in a voice that sounds likes it’s filled with hollowness: “Why didn’t somebody help me?” he asks. “Why didn’t they come and get me out of here?”
I’m always literally frozen, unable to turn away or ignore him. And, even when I DO respond to the question, he doesn’t even hear my gd answer. I tell him: “Their chief recalled the firefighters that were almost to your floor [this part really happened, outside the dreaming world] and told them to come back down, b/c the S. Tower had collapsed. They couldn’t risk losing more firefighters. They couldn’t reach you safely.”
But he just repeats the question, over and over, and I can’t wake up and I don’t know what is real or not real when I’m dreaming and it feels like being locked into a personal version of Hell in Dreamland.
After they played Osama bin Laden’s capture and death like the fiddle of a life time, the dream reappeared and has been there ever since. So brilliant job on the reporters’ behalves. They know how to create torment and trauma or, at least, make it worse.
I had found a way to control the dream until that happened. Some people may disagree with that, arguing that I must not have or it wouldn’t have returned. But whatever I was doing was working. And the media didn’t NEED to play it out longer than the gd Nile, for God’s sake.
I’m angry about the dream returning. I can’t possibly convey how terrible this dream is; and this is the first place I’ve recorded its details.
The site for family of 9/11 victims deals more with happy memories of your loved one. If you have issues like the one I’m describing, he recommends that you get help from someone else. The administrator feels underqualified to give professional advice about such issues. Like he said, he’s a stock broker, not a therapist. He doesn’t want to hurt people by trying to help them in a field he’s unqualified to do so. At least he didn’t tell me to “get over it” or any of those other platitudes. He just thinks that anything he says would be considered a layperson’s viewpoint.
Anyway, that’s why I wrote it here.

71

Hi Keren
I am glad to hear that this blog is giving you courage! Courage is something that came in very handy for me!
Thank you for sharing. I am sure that as you read the other posts in this site that you will have many more insights.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Vicki
Yes, I felt differently from one day to the next, it was part of how I coped. It was part of the intricate survival system that I created since childhood. But it doesn’t prove you are lying about the whole thing at all, it only proves that you can still block it out.
Hugs, Darlene

72

Vicki,

I read your post and I feel so sorry abt what you are going through. Maybe you should see a psychiatrist just to help you get though this for short while until you feel better. I know there are medications out there that help with nightmares. I was on a small dose of seroquel for awhile and had no nightmares (they use small doses of this medication for sleep). I had to get off of it because I couldn’t stand the side effects. I know I am not qualified to give this advise but just letting you know my personal experience. “the ashamed to be alive feeling” is the worst feeling I have ever felt… I hope it will go away one day. Wish you all the best,

Keren

73

I AM seeing a psychiatrist, but I don’t understand our relationship. All he does is talk about medicine, take two of my vital signs (blood pressure and pulse) and take my weight.
I’m still trying to get a therapist, and there’s this really long waiting list. But the last therapist I had didn’t even believe dreams mean anything at all. Well, my question would be, If they don’t mean anything, why in the world would my mind visit the same dream about 100 times since it happened?
And I lost my insurance, that’s how I lost my therapist. I got my insurance back; now I’m working on getting a therapist. I just can’t believe how inept my own profession is. Everything really IS a slave to insurance, and I think it’s BS. I agree with my friend Robb, who used to work on Wall Street and still has friends who do. He said health care has no business being a profiting business. It should be not-for-profit.
They have literally hundreds of businesses they can choose to run. They don’t have to make health care and funeral expenses into a profiting racket.
He got angry at how they treated his mom while she was dying. That’s when he decided that health care doesn’t need to be a capitalistic venture.

74

This message is to Darlene, or any others who may understand it or have experience with it. I don’t understand why my doctor told me to stop trying to help myself if it’s too painful to do it.
Wouldn’t he, as a psychiatrist, understand that you get worse before better. I mean if people who don’t work in mental health get that concept? I’m really confused as to why he doesn’t seem to know that.
I also wonder if I’m allowed to ask him why he’s against me making myself worse before I get better. IDK ANYthing in terms of what’s considered proper protocol when talking to a psychiatrist, the only thing I’m positive of is that he’s like most doctors who, if their patients disagree with them about something, they want the patient to be quiet. They assume they know more than the patient which, in a lot of cases, is technically true. But, then, if they know more why won’t they share the reasons for what they advise you to do?
I’m wondering, and feeling like I have to do the entire journey of getting help alone; in terms of professional aid, that is.
Thanks for listening.

75

Vicki,
You can say whatever you want to say to a Dr. or professional. They are supposed to be there to SERVE you.
Hugs, Darlene

76

I don’t necessarily agree that you need to get worse before you get better. What is worse than already being as low as you can go, as alone as lonely can get, and a “whiter shade of pale?” There is nothing worse than what has already been experienced, and the depth of the trenches it has taken us. In my experience, it was not the psychiatrists who helped me, but other mental health professionals such as social workers.

77

The song “Yakkity Yak…. Don’t Talk Back” comes to mind re: Vicki’s comment here, and how the psychiatrists wants quiet if/when a patient does not agree.

78

Exactly Lynn,
Good example! It is another example of the misuse of power and control that we have all been groomed so well to accept.. ugg

79

Believe me. It’s gotten worse. Before I started doing any work from the work book and book, ‘The Courage To Heal,’ I never had any flashbacks or discomfort when working with pediatric patients who are being abused right now. We come to deal with the physical scars. I had no problem whatsoever handling that kind of call. Then, suddenly, I practically fell to pieces on a call where someone had been raped and tried to kill herself.
They suspended my duties, and I’ve never been confronted with needing to get rid of my cable service in order to be able to pay my rent.
It’s gotten more than worse. This shit is downright scary and my dad, whom I had to ask to borrow money from, totally disagrees with what I’m doing since it inconvenienced him by making him need to give me money. That’s exactly why I didn’t want to ask, but there was nothing else I could do. The new job jerked around my hours and made sure they only have to pay me half.
Backtracking, all I can say is when you work in emergency medicine, and see current abuse, it brings it up-apparently-if you suddenly decide you’re going to ‘do healing work.’
BTW when you report every detail of what happened to the child, like you’re suPOSed to, the abusive parents decide it would be nice if they start threatening your life. I’ve NEVER liked that attitude and I like it even less now, which I hadn’t thought was possible until now.
Is that all any of them can do? Threaten to beat you up or kill you just b/c you’re not putting up with their shit?
They almost remind me of Osama bin Laden. He gave as his reason for killing people, ‘they weren’t doing what I think they should do, so I killed them.’

80

i scrolled down to comment with my fingers on fire…

then it was gone…

a flurry of “you’ll get in trouble” by the littles and *POOF*

ok! i found it again. “we are the child victims and we need to be heard”

i get SO ANGRY at how little regard there is for adult victims of child abuse. mental illness of any sort in the US is treated like a character flaw, even if only by the lack of parity with insurance companies. that is almost never the case though, i don’t know one person with a mental illness who hasn’t been told to “get over it” or been accused of making it up…hell abuse survivors from the same family that can acknowledge the abuse was wrong but that “you just want to remember the bad stuff”.

we try to prevent child abuse, we try to remove children from abuser’s households (that is a whole other topic of anger for me) but once you are 18 or hell, a rebellious teenager you are ON YOUR OWN.

there is help out there but it is hard to find and incredibly limited (as compared to help with “physical” ailments)

i can find anger for all of these issues. and speak up for others. but somehow i am not able to maintain anger at my own abusers…i sympathize with them too much most of the time. all of them were abused in someway as well…i have to try to remember though, help has existed…therapy has existed…AA has existed…and it isn’t right that their lack of strength to change and heal shouldn’t mean that *I* have to pay the rest of my life for it.

they’ve all said that at some point “i’m not gong to spend the rest of my life apologizing for this” or something similar…i will pay for it for the rest of mine though. i should say that WE will because i split into effing pieces.

Which not only do I have to live with the after effects and memories of abuse but I have to deal with people telling me to shut up and get over it or that i’m lying?! That is EFFED UP.

Sorry, apparently a nerve was struck.

Stupid out of town therapist….lol

at least we can laugh right?

-M

81

OMG Maggie you are so right. Mental illness is treated as a character flaw especially in mental hospitals and the blame is put solely on the patient. I believe mental hospitals are really there to make people worse especially from my experience.

I was going to a psychotherapist/psychiatrist just recently and he diagnosed me with paranoia although what I think I really have is social anxiety (I am terrified of authority figures…for a good reason). I don’t believe that the FBI is after me or that aliens are coming to get me or anything crazy like that…I am just scared to face CERTAIN people. Nevertheless he kept insisting I have paranoia and whenever I told him anything abt the past he seemed to look at me in disbelief and completely disregard what I said and move onto another subject. This got me so depressed that I started cutting…

Anyway thank god I am not seeing that man anymore. I do think he was a good person…But I think all psychiatrist are brainwashed to think and label people rather than look at them as a whole person with dignity.

hopefully the medical system will change for the better one day…

82

Hi Maggie,
Welcome to Emerging From Broken. I’m glad that it hit a nerve, 🙂 it was when my nerve got hit that I started to stand up for myself, and for the truth. If you read more of the articles in this blog, you will see that I also had trouble being angry at my own abusers, and made excuses for them daily, but it was when I finally looked at the truth that I started to recover. There is lots to this, even to the reason why I defended them. and I agree with you ~ it is “effed up” but there is a solution! There is hope! Glad you are here.
Hugs, Darlene

Hi Keren
Yes, I have written about the whole label and diagnosis thing.. in fact I just did a radio show about this topic. Here is the link if you would like to hear the replay:

“Dealing with Diagnosis beyond the labels” Hugs, Darlene

83

Thank you so much for taking a stand, facing your fears and sharing with those of us who are also on the journey.

Hugs!

84

Hi Betty,
Glad you are here too!
Hugs, Darlene

85

Darlene…

I listened to your radio show and it’s wonderful…Thank you sooooo much!!! I hope you realize how much of a difference you are making in peoples lives 🙂

I have a question to anyway that feels they can answer this:

How do you deal with a sister that denies the abuse that happened to you?

My sister is very introverted…I also think she has some kind of dissociative disorder (she erases any bad things for her memory it seems and she refuses to talk abt anything “bad”). I feel like her denial is harder to deal with than my parents’ denial. Also my father was much more violent with me than her so she might have perceived the situation differently. Any help?… thank you <3

86

Hi Julia,
Glad you liked the radio show, I have another one the third week in July. 🙂
Your recovery is not dependant on anyone else. It matters not if your sister is in denial, refuses to remember or knows and still denies. The healing process can still take place.
This is a frequent topic on this blog, so keep reading and you will find some additional info
Hugs Darlene

87

http://www.somanyways.net/2011/04/its-victims-fault-again.html

I wish I had been able to read this article first before writing mine, you articulated that which I could not. As an abuse survivor and the mother of a severely “bullied” child, this wrenches my heart

88

[…] I don’t think that children have much choice in what they sow.  Did I sow the seeds of deserving abuse? Did I do something to bring that on myself? Was I sexually abused because I had “sown bad seed?” Was I neglected because I had not sown the right seeds? I believed that I deserved the strap that I endured many times; I was told that I deserved it. I was literally brainwashed to accept that I had brought all abuse on myself. And I certainly believed that I did.  You reap what you sow. […]

89

I used to wish death upon my parents, but not anymore. I basically think that when they do die they will be held accountable for the abuse.. Ive given up trying to bring it up to them. Its ironic because the one God they claim to be on such good terms with is going to be my only hope for their justice, and they will take the family secret of their abuse and craziness to the grave, with no apologies made to anyone. Whats with the misuse of God and religion to justify all host of unnaceptable deeds? Seems to be a theme. Most certainly with my family, and their church.

90

Hi Sarah
I hear you! I found that focusing on my own healing from the damage and standing up to them has been the best justice. They thought they owned me and I made it clear that they don’t. They made their beds and I don’t think they are in any denial about the degree of “sin” they perpatrated on others. There is no excuse and all the justifications they use are lies meant to twist victims into silence and compliance.
Thank you for your comments!
Hugs, Darlene

91

this is so encouraging to read all these comments all these survivors healing. sometimes when memories overwhelm and you feel the words to describe your experiences to much, see on here another person may well have spoken for you in that they have been there and felt the same anguish all helps in the move forward.

92

Hi Darlene, I just wanted to say how grateful I am to you to have the courage to start this blog. I would have never healed without it. I would have remained in my cowering, shamed, worthless fog for the rest of my life. I thank God for you.

93

It’s the first time I red your whole blog and everything your wrote, well it’s like you’re talking about my life. I’ve had sexual, physical and spiritual abuse. The Lord started my healing process 3 years ago and have to admit it’s a lonely… road, no one really understands the deep emotional wounds one gets to discover on the road to healing. The fight against the feelings of rejection in friendships is the one I struggle the most right now. Yes they always know when to find me when they are in need but where are they when I need them? Can you understand what I mean? It’s not that I don’t call, mail,chat or text them but all of a sudden there is a painful silence and I don’t want to “beg”for an ear or an arm. I throw up several balls but nothing, I find that a difficult road. I’m in the part of healing where I have to learn to recieve, but how can I recieve if no one’s there?? I’ve lost my whole family cause of the abuses, loads of friends also; as a human it’s a lonely road cause no one really understands that the Lord takes of layer by layer in your soul to heal the deep wounds and that it takes time. If I did not have developed a deep intimate personal relationship with the Lord I could not deal with it to be frank. Well I’m not quiet sure why I share this with you…

94

Hi Vanessa,
Welcome to Emerging from Broken
You have found a place where there are many who understand the wounds. Talking about this stuff really helps to shed light on the truth.
Please feel free to share as often as you wish.
Hugs, Darlene

95

Darlene,
I truly hope so. If find it very hard to cope with the feelings of rejection. I know that most of my friends do not do it on purpose cause they do not really know what I’m going thru. So I hope I can find somehow some connection here.
So if someone reads this and are having trouble with making new friendships also please share :)I’ve been rejected all my life, first my whole family, than I ended up sect and when I got out well most people know what happens than you loose more people and get more enemies and at the end my relationship ended also.
What I really miss are real friends, I have friends, but not the ones you can call when your are really deep in pain and grieve. You start talking, they listen for awhile and slowly you notice they want to change the subject when I think I’m just starting.And because I miss this in my life I can be that person in other lives and I am thankfull for it that I am able to be that to people what I still miss in my life.I know all the credit for that goed to my dear Saviour. Does anybody recognize this?????????????

96

Hi Vanessa
I can relate to this; what I found is that I attracted different more caring people when I healed and validated myself. It was like before I expected to be invalidated and I attracted it!
The process of healing changed my whole life.
Hugs, Darlene

97

With the greatest of reticence …
During the Korean War in a Red Cross tent (WoW just like M*A*S*H*)
I was born in a P.O.W. camp, not so nice. “… if I had had my goddamn druthers I would have put you in a gunny sack beat you to death with a shovel and buried you in the woods”. (such a humanitarian)… The oedipal nazi empowered the vindictive narcissist princess … I was in the US ARMY the first 22 years of my life, I moved constantly, I was ostracized from my siblings as they were entitled by my degradation, there was nobody … with diminishing physical capacities due unto the mortal wounds of time the hyper-vigilance and violence of my subconscious makes sleep an exercise in terror. I never neglected my responsibilities, I too never capitulated. I became apolitical, non-materialistic, non-religious, introverted, asocial loner. The sadistic brutality and/of mindless emotional pettiness never ended. I now find myself subject to the indifference, ignorance and greed driven disrespect of a third generation, entitled, sanctimoniously empowered and privileged by my indentured servitude. 59 years of patterns.
Do not aim any gods at me, I want no hugs.
Peace …

98

Hi William
Welcome to emerging from broken.
This website is all about breaking patterns. I am so sorry that you went through all that. Please forgive me if in the future I forget and sign “hugs” .. it is my habbit and I mean no harm by it.
Darlene

99

I think I must at this point admit out loud that my biological parent abused me. I was beaten and have old scares and broken bones to show for it. I was told many times that I and I alone did it to myself. I have in these past 7 years faced my parents and the psychological games and I have cried so many time and hated so many time. I think I have been facing my demons–remembering and trying to justify so much. Child abuse is a ripple affect this is what I have seen while facing them and memories. When I filed, as a child, child abuse charges on them, I started something I never thought would ever happen. I found some faith and hope in the twelve steps even though I am not a victim of alcohol related events or drugs. I am truly a broken person. If you know of a support group in Central Oregon would you please tell me.

100

Hi Peggy
Welcome to Emerging from Broken.
I don’t know of any in person support groups, but I am sure that if someone else does they will share let you know. Meanwhile we have a fairly large community here if you want to keep sharing. This whole site is about facing the truth about being devalued, abused, etc. and overcoming the lifetime effects of it.
Thank you for sharing part of your story here,
Hugs, Darlene

101

Darlene;
I know what you mean! When I wrote my book, the first negative comment said to me was, “This sounds like a ‘Woe is me’ book.”
Man, did he have it wrong! So many people have told me they have been helped with what I wrote (even though it isn’t written very professionally), lives and hearts are being changed.

We have to keep speaking out, no matter the naysayers and poo pooers, because there are too many people who need to be told they are worth so much more than what they have been taught through their circumstances!

Thank you for being a voice~!

102

Hi Whispersfrommyheart
Yes, we have to keep speaking out. This is life changing stuff! Healing is not going to happen when we shove everything under the carpet and farther into the dark.
Hugs, Darlene

103

Adults who were abused as children, specially in countries where
Violence and beating a child was or still is a common practice
Like some countries in Europe of today and south America must beguine with
Facing the issue cristal clear, when the perpetrators are still alive
The best therapy in my opinion is just confrontation. Not looking for
Someone to blame but simply create an atmosphere that permits
Perpetrator and victim face each other , make it clear that a
Profoundly dramatic event occurred and creating the grounds
For the not so easy forgiveness and reconciliation.
For that to occur both most be intellectually and spiritually capable to
Deal with pain , hate, rage, many tears, recognition of the wrong doing
And then eventually forgiveness or at least a closure to a chapter of horror

104

Adriano
Why no blame? I didn’t need to look for someone to blame, I HAD someone to blame. My parents didn’t want to talk about it, they wanted to deny it and blame it on me.
So why is reconciliation or forgiveness the goal? And if both are NOT spiritually capable to deal with the pain, then what??
This website is about a different way to get closure.
Please feel free to express your experience with how YOU have found your freedom.
Darlene

105

NEW article related to this one on Emerging from Broken….[…] Victims of child abuse (or any type of abuse) need to be heard before they are instructed to move on or find a way to forgive the perpetrator of the damage caused to them. People need to be validated and assured that what happened to them was WRONG and that they didn’t deserve it. They need to be told that it was not their fault and that the perpetrator of that abuse is the guilty party and that person is the one who is accountable. […]
http://emergingfrombroken.com/forgiveness-and-child-abuse-when-suggesting-forgiveness-is-abusive/

106

Vanessa said:
The fight against the feelings of rejection in friendships is the one I struggle the most right now. Yes they always know when to find me when they are in need but where are they when I need them?

I too am hyper vigilant when let down or when I feel disrespected by friends. I always expect that treatment from my family. That is the way I have always been treated. Per the friendships, I don’t know if its that I just expect too much? I have a couple of childhood friends and a more current one. All decent and kind. I have
trouble knowing how to “fit in” as a friend without being too forceful.
As a teenager I was so desperate for approval I tried to force people to like me. I tried to force people to love me. They ran the other way. I felt so unlikeable and ugly. I am older and wiser now and no longer do that. I guess I never learned how to relate normally to anything. I was so brainwashed by my N father and kept in ignorance by my uncaring mother.
I’m told to go out make friends, join activities, get happier. But when you don’t know how to “fit in”
how do you do that? I have read books, but all those little social mannerisms are awkward to me.
When you feel like an outcast and try to join and feel ignored, it just brings back all those bashed
expectations from childhood when it was so very important to be liked.

107

Karen Ranes
I soo feel you I’ve struggeld with the same issue for over years,but over the past months i came to realize that I needed a lot of inner healing, in my heart, my soul and childhoodmemories. People kept telling me the same over and over but I just could not do it it was not that I did not want to I just couldn’t. But the wonderful part is that the Lord knew and saw my struggle al those years. He knew why I had become the way I was and for over the past year He started a deep inner healing, deep hidden wounds, hidden memories, feelings of rejection, abadonment,not being loved, not being heard, not being wanted, not being seen, not being accepted for who you are and on and on. I did not knew I needed so much inner healing, that my heart was so deeply wounded. But He started a journey of inner healing together with me from the day before I was even conceived until now. Karen God knows you and He’s the only one who’s been there all the time and I believe He will do the same thing for you as He is doing for me right now, inner healing of your soul. If you ever need someone to talk to pealse feel free

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@ Karen Ranes
I wrote a comment but did something wrong. I so feel you cause I haven been feeling the same for years and i did not understand what was wrong with me. i kept on hearing the same words over and over from people also but those words did not help me. Untill last year God started with a deep deep inner healing of my soul. People could just not understan why I became the person I became even I did not understand myself anymore but God knew and He knew I needed my soul to be healed, my wounds t be healed, bad childhoodmemories to be erased. And He started this journey together with me, from the day before I was even conceived until now. He knows I need this healing in order to be restored to the person He created me to be and no human being can fix our souls except for the One who created us.And I can tell you that he is an expert in healing your soul, heart and brain i am really amazed cause it’s all just happening at home and I call them Holy Spirit surgery’s from my soul, heart and memory and the Lord is doing it!! No it’s not always fun cause a lot of grieve, pain in involved but the Father is so very patience, tender, full of love and compassion. He’s doing what no human being could do for me through prayer, talking whatever and people notice the difference…I am amazed but so very thankfull I am not there yet but we are going through the last part of the inner healing and I believe that the Lord wants to do the same for you as He’s doing for me

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Hi Vanessa
I fixed the comment (where you used Karen’s name by accident in the comment form) before I published it so don’t worry. Both of your comments are there now.
Hugs Darlene

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Hi Everyone!
I have published a new post. Today I decided to publish an abusive comment in the body of a new article. I get comments like this once in a while and today I decided to use it as an example of how and why people try to make us shut up about the past. Here is the link to “People who try to silence victims interfere with emotional healing”
http://emergingfrombroken.com/people-who-try-to-silence-victims-interfere-with-emotional-healing/
Looking forward to the conversation!
Hugs, Darlene

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Ok. I am a 41 year old survivor of childhood abuse both sexual and harsh psychical beatings at the hands of my father. I went to my mom at the age of 9 and told her of the abuse and out of fear and shame asked that she not tell anyone. She didn’t , and shame on her. I have forgiven her and made reasons up to forgive her my whole life trying to justify why she did nothing. 4 years after telling my mother my father again tried to introduce himself to me expressing his attraction to me in words. It was the last time I ever saw him. I wasnt 9 anymore, I was whole 13 years old and he wasn’t going to be allowed to hurt me anymore unless his plan was to kill me. In fear of being outed by me he went to my mother and outed himself and begged for her forgiveness. Little did he know he didn’t have to she already knew for the past 4 years and didn’t do anything because a 9 year old asked her not to.
My sister took on the role of parent in the heat of the moment and called the police and demanded he leave. He left that night. A legal action was never taken. I never received treatment. I live out the rest of my teen years using drugs and drinking drowning out reality. Fuck all authority teachers, cops and god I hated them all.
I do not know how I survived those years but I did. I graduated from school and went on to start a small business and had and have a great wife and 2 sons that mean the WORLD to me. I was good!
I thought I was good. My is a bit of a nosy body, a gossip a very curious woman. The other evening she googled his name and very little information came up besides a couple of real estate transactions with his name and another guys name that were also tied to a business name. After 28 years of burying my childhood this sparked my interest. I wanted to know if he had stolen someone identity or if he was a big old fag. Sorry to offend any fags out there but I deserve to use this word to describe this abuser. After a 10 minute search into this guys name, business and property that tied them together, bam! A picture of the 2 of them smiling together on a business Facebook page. Shit, he is a fag. Ok my father that melested me as young child is now a fag. I dig deeper, only to find nothing on my father in his own name but his partner seems to be a self proclaimed artist / educator. What the! They are running some kind of great non profit origination that deals with art and educating disadvantage children. What the!
So all my fellow abused friends I have spent 3 sleepless nights and horribly long days soul searching. 1 picture has surfaced and now my life needs to be turned upside down. I need to stand tall and face my shame, fears and anger and somehow figure out how to get authorities to investigate these guys and I do not know how. My worst fears maybe true. What are these fags posing as? Is this business some type of sham? Have they hurt any other children? How do I bring these guys down? Will the authority listen to my story and start an investigation?
I was finally OK and now I am faced with as an adult what I couldn’t face at 9. I hate my mom for the moment for not doing what I believe I need to do now. After 3 sleepless nights and 28 yrs of this fucker living his life in freedom it is time for him to pay. I moved on and now I am forced to try to do something to bring this guy to justice not for me at this point but to protect who ever maybe in harms way and for those that may have been harmed. I have never shared this story with anyone but my wife and immediate family. Please give me the strenght to disrupt my life and somehow figure out how to bring this guy to justice. Thanks for listening

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Hi Rob
Welcome to EFB ~ Thank you for sharing your story.
I can relate to your pain, what a horrible thing this is that happened to you. It is terrible that this happened and that you were unprotected and he was set free. Remember that this is not YOUR shame. He put that on you. Even your mother by not reporting this herself has contributed to the problem and put shame on you. You are the innocent here. In this process don’t forget to put your healing first. Your strength will increase as you heal and it will serve you well if you decide to report.

I admire your drive to see this monster brought to justice. I fully support you in whatever you decide to do. I am very concerned about why a child sexual abuser is running some sort of organization for children; that is a huge red flag!
Hugs, Darlene

p.s. About the word “fag”. I understand your pain and anger and your reasons for wording your comments the way that you did however we do have gay people here reading and contributing to this website. Child abuse has nothing to do with homosexuality and I really want to gently ask you that in the future you please consider the way you word things. I would not want other readers here to feel ‘abused’ by the way share because what happens is that a discussion (or fight) breaks out about the way you worded things instead of about the crime (crimes) that happened and nobody gets any farther ahead. The last thing I want is for the healing process to be inturrupted by something like that!

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[…] who abused their children are likely to demand their adult child forgive them for the past but may never acknowledge any wrong doing or accept any responsibility for their actions. The truth is that they aren’t interested in being forgiven. People who want […]

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Oh my gosh, people still pooh-pooh my experience, I would say 90 percent of people I share my story with. It is so painful.

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Hi Janine G.
Welcome to Emerging from Broken, glad you are here!
hugs, Darlene

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I am seeking justice. I want admittance, and acknowledgement of what happened to me while I was in protective custody. I am using the handle anonymous because this is private and in a just world would only be between myself and the justice system.
Here is a link to where I started posting what I remember as it comes up. It cycles, I recall then lose it and it comes back with more or less info the next time round. If you read it you will understand why. I was ECT’d a lot and drugged a lot to both damage my mind and destroy my memory of the abuse.
It took place in the 60’s and foster care went on into 73. The parts I never remembered until being triggered to in fall 07 are the time I spent at the Shelter. Until I started to remember my life of continuous memory had always begun on the day I was taken out the front door of that hospital they used in A Beautiful Mind. It was sometime in spring 68.
http://www.topix.com/forum/city/belleville-nj/TV02FNMT3GE8K208B

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Thank you so much for sharing your story. I find the worst part is societies opinions once you break the connection with your parents. 15 years of marriage to a wonderful man and I still feel worthless. If I had not broke the connection there is no way I could function as an adult. My parents were verbally and physically abusive and as hard as I tried to “let it go” as everyone tells you to, the more I felt my emotions and health were spiraling out of control. I honestly don’t think I would have even had the strength to disconnect if it were not for my loving husband. I still have triggers that cause anxiety attacks that I don’t quite understand but I am hoping little by little to eventually become whole. I pray for peace for anyone going through this.

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Hi Dot
Welcome to EFB ~ I have found that really healthy people understand why this happens. I said to someone once “oh so you think I should have let her continue to treat me with total disrespect?” The woman I was speaking to turned beet red. When people don’t understand, that is about them, not about you. When I became strong and confident in my decisions, people reacted differently to me.
I am glad you are here!
hugs, Darlene

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