How I Came To Be
My abusive childhood. I own it as much as one can. Or I am trying to figure out to own it in a healthier way. Even though it is was not my fault. That old abusive programming is not working for me anymore. How do I own something and not let it negatively affect my life?
I think for me, the beginning is telling myself that it was not my fault. No one ever asks to be abused. I certainly did not ask to be born into an abusive family. Who would, given a choice?
I remember wishing I hadn’t been born. Or that I was born into the wrong family and my real family would come and rescue me. I daydreamed about anything that would get me out of that home and away from those people. Alien abduction sounded way better than what I was going through.
Not My Fault
But amongst those thoughts of alien abductions and swapped-at-birth daydreams, I sit here today because of the life I was born into. And I survived those years because of the way my brain developed to protect me from the constant abuse.
Now, as an adult, a SOBER adult, I realize that there are things that I learned that I do not need anymore. Not only do I not need them, but they can also, at times, be detrimental to me. I realize how much those survival skills have kept me from being my most fabulous self.
The first and most significant phrase that I have to remind myself of is that it wasn’t my fault. I did nothing wrong all of those years ago to warrant the abuse that I received from my parents. That guilt has been with me my whole life.
I remember thinking that I must have done something wrong. But I did not. And I repeat that to myself many times.
Destroy Old Abusive Programming
Repetition, and the right words, are the key to destroying that old programming. It is why I repeat phrases to myself throughout the day. Those phrases help me to combat that old programming that I still have with me.
But I will fight very hard to stay as I am. Correction, my brain will fight very hard to keep within those dysfunctional thoughts and, yes, abusive patterns. But I don’t want to stay the way I am.
The way I am, the way my brain works is not helping me anymore. It isn’t working for anyone in my life, whether they realize it or not. And most do not even know it. That is how many other dysfunctional people there are in the world.
Go Back to Go Forward
I no longer want to be in pain, spending time running from my pain or ignoring my pain. I am tired. I think Brene Brown said that we get to a point in our lives that we are just tired. We realize we have spent our lives trying to be everything except ourselves. And that is where I am.
But to do that, I have to back to the beginning of it all. And I have to sit with that, for a bit, to get through the To go forward, I must go back to the beginning, back to the beginning of the pain that shaped me. And that pain was, in many ways, the end of it all too.
Cold, Spikey Blanket
It is one of the reasons that I am comfortable in the pain. I know that I shouldn’t want to stay within that pain. But it is familiarity. It is known. That old abusive programming is the cold, spikey blanket that my parent’s abuse wrapped me in as a child. It was all I knew. The only comfort I had.
I like knowing things; I like knowing what to expect and what to know is coming down the road. Growing up knowing was a finite commodity. My world was kept so chaotic, first by my father and then by my mother. Being able to have something familiar was so important, even if that familiarity was emotional pain.
Not that I plan to be in pain or have pain, but the mental anguish I live with every day is comfortable because I know how it feels. These other things, other feelings, I don’t understand them. It is an unknown entity, and that makes it scary.
Ignore the Rest
It was that fear of changing my internal narrative, that old abusive programming, that I think maybe triggered my survival instinct. In part, I was sitting in pain, but I didn’t want to admit that I was.
I wanted people to see me as this strong person no one could hurt—instead of someone who had been damaged for years, trapped in circumstances that I could not escape. And DESPITE all that, I am still here. I used to try to ignore all of that. It’s in the past, after all.
But the past is directly influencing my present. I can no longer ignore nor run from that. In one of my recent posts about picking my switch for my father to beat me while he became sexually aroused, I started to face myself and my past.
IT IS MY STORY
I hadn’t remembered that incident until I sat with one of my many fragmented memories. I was painstakingly trying to pull those memories back into my conscious thought.
I am now changing the story that I choose to tell. That doesn’t make any of the stories that I have shared before untrue. They are all my stories. Now I write about my truth.
And my truth includes my pain. They are intertwined together. I need to unravel them, pull them apart, and then put them back together.
It is those fragments of memory that I turn over and over, putting the pieces together to tell a story. MY STORY.