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Re: How do you move on from an abusive childhood?

Posted by Daisym on June 22, 2006, at 3:30:49

In reply to Re: How do you move on from an abusive childhood? Tamar, posted by orchid on June 21, 2006, at 21:49:19

I think the truth is that you don't move on from an abusive childhood. You are who you are because of your unique experiences. The life you lead is balanced on the life you had before. Can you imagine anyone saying, "How do I move past my normal childhood?" Because you already have "moved past it" simply by growing up. I think your QBQ (question behind the question) is really "when does it stop hurting?" and that is a much harder question to answer. But perhaps the truth there is that it never stops completely, it just becomes background noise.

There is so much to be angry about, not the least of which is having to go through it again to heal. But I think we are all beginning to figure out our own personal narrative and develop a way to describe our life that isn't crushing, yet is true. I think we develop this narrative in stages. First, we have to sort things and answer questions for ourselves about the truth. Then we have to tell our story to a caring witness. And we have to get feedback that validates our feelings -- yes, it was bad; no, it wasn't your fault. We have to tell and retell the story...because WE need to believe it and WE need to acknowledge just what the impact of the abuse is. And intertwined is grieving, being angry, being needy, and growing and changing. It is a painful journey towards acceptance. I'm not sure I'll ever get there, and I don't think acceptance is a phase you reach and stay in. I think we have to accept our childhoods for what they were, over and over again. Everytime we understand ourselves better, we have to acknowledge the abuse and its affects. There will be ongoing triggers, some worse than others, but they will always probably push our buttons.

As harsh as this sounds, I think you can't move past something that is inside you. But you can make choices about your behavior and about acknowledging your feelings. Change happens with selfdiscovery. You have come a long way on this journey, and I admire you for how hard you are working on everything.

 

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