Abuse (Wound Series, Childhood Trauma)

Abuse

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Abuse (Wound Series, Childhood Trauma)

This article is in the series about Childhood Trauma and Wounds. My last post was about abandonment. Abandonment caused me to doubt the possibility of stable happiness. I also makes me fear to date that I will lose what I really like. I’m going to talk in this post about Abuse. The definition of Abuse is when a responsible and influencing adult is using the child to fulfill his own needs instead of the ones of the child. Like always, we need to remember that we are looking at this from a child’s perspective and not from the eyes of an adult so Abuse doesn’t need to be intentional physical, sexual or emotional violence to be impacting.

Over Protective Mother

My mother was, herself, a grown up wounded child. She was so afraid that harm would happen to me that she built a bubble around her and myself excluding the world.

I barely had friends and even lost some because she overreacted to some kid incident between them and me.

My surrounding never taught me to deal with loneliness. I still remember that the few times she was not completely available to me already felt like a horrible emptiness when I was a small child.

This is abusive behaviour even if stemming from absolute love. It’s abusive because our of her fear it denied me a learning experience on society.

I love her nevertheless. Always remember that I’m not criticizing anyone. I’m trying to learn to clear the impact of my past on my present.

Rigid and Stubborn Father

My father is rigid and stubborn and can’t accept any behavior from anyone that doesn’t match his own views about the world. He constantly fought – often in front of me – with my mother. These fights were irrelevant and based on small details but they were constant. I felt responsible for the disarray their couple was in. They didn’t explain me it was not my fault but their’s.

After she Died

After she died, I was alone with my father. He genuinely gave me as much love and tenderness as he could but compared to the extreme love my mother gave me it felt like a total absence of tenderness. Along with the tenderness deficit I became the recipient of his stubbornness. Where I wanted to play piano he subscribed me to guitar classes. Where I wanted to do Kung Fu he subscribed me to Judo. All this without any explanation. It was simply “the best for me”.

My father’s most impacting abusive behavior was the constant contrast between what he was telling me and others. He was marketing me to everyone as some kind of perfect genius child. At the same time he was telling me I needed to be better, work more, do better results In school – despite being almost consistently in the class’s top 3, eat more or less depending on his mood and my weight.

Consequences

The Abuse consequences of my childhood trauma are way milder than the abandonment ones. They also left some weirdnesses in me that I still fight more often that I would like to. Typically I can’t let go and trust life as it comes because I feel that if I don’t control everything then things cannot go the way I need them. I also am quite bad at conflict because it quickly goes into territories where I feel the other party is not respecting me instead of just debating the facts. I think I can’t win an argument so I’m tense even before it starts.

Generally when this part of me doesn’t compound with fear of abandonment I manage it in a mindful way.

The consequence I can’t manage well is the impression that whatever I do won’t be good enough. This is why I spent so much time trying to be some kind of business star despite it killing my joy of life.

I forcefully work on this last consequence. I removed myself temporarily from any carrier path and am learning to experience life without an unreachable goal of grandeur. I’m obviously scared that I will finish under a bridge without a way to support myself and my family but I’m finally experiencing how unrealistic this fear is and slowly getting to term with it.

It’s not my Fault

The thing that helps me most is to remember and realize that nothing of this is my fault. I didn’t choose my circumstances. Now that I know myself a bit better every day it is my responsibility to love myself, forgive myself and others in order to let go of all this and be more happy and useful.

Remember this please in your own life: you do your best with what you are. You can learn and improve but you do your absolute best. When doing our best we do what is needed and there is no reason to self-loath, to criticize ourselves. We need to be mindful of what we are doing, avoid the trap of automatic reactions and move on our path in life.

Happy healing!

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Walter

Founder at healing.ly
Spent years in the business world, now looking a bit more at myself and why I'm here and where I want to go. This blog shares my experience.

Comments

    1. healingly

      It’s not bravery but a need to 1) share my story and 2) open the eyes of others so it doesn’t take them as much time as me to start healing. Thanks for the kind comment.

      Reply
  1. Amber

    Wow. Thank you for sharing these personal experiences! So many people out there can relate and it helps those in need of guidance… Reassurance… Support.

    Reply
  2. Sensory Sensitive Mummy

    Thank you for sharing your story, I am currently researching Inter-generational childhood trauma, as my 4 year old displays a lot of the behaviours that her father did as a child, but she is in a different situation to her father was. I write a private Blog alongside my public one to share my thoughts and the reports I’ve read, as it hit my partner and our family bad after 33 years of not knowing the entire truth. The hardest thing is not being believed by other family members even though we’ve read them in black and white.

    Reply
  3. Jerome

    Hello Walter,
    Many thanks for your very profound analysis, and the beauty of sharing with others.
    You are a beautiful person. Never forget that. Your story with your parents and how you coped up with the imperfect life, made you become an even more beautiful person. Keep learning at the peace which is right for you and be confident that you will success on your way to the light.
    All the best,
    Jerome

    Reply
      1. Jerome

        Thanks Walter, if you send me your email address, I will share with you some food for thoughts (in German though).
        It comes from a German philosoph named Elias Fischer (lebeblog.de). In essence he says we have to take care of the piece of God in us.
        All the best,
        Jerome

        Reply
    1. healingly

      Thanks for your touching comment. It’s difficult to remember that we always do our best with where we are at a given time. If we accept that then the healing starts because instead of self-loathing we start facing ourselves with love and compassion. It’s very worthwhile. I followed your blog.

      Reply
  4. Tamara Gerber

    Isn’t it interesting how the impact of our parents’ values and behaviours still haunts us as adults.
    My Dad was similar to yours. He never told me he loved me or he was proud of me, so I assumed he didn’t / wasn’t.
    When I had perfect grades in 9 out of 10 subjects he’d ride me “what did you do here, try harder!”
    Until one day, I was in my early 20s I overheard him basically bragging to his friends how his daughter landed herself this great job in the big city, and she had an apartment of her own. I was like “what???”

    Reply
    1. healingly

      I don’t know about your dad but mine is using me as a marketing tool for his achievements. I know he loves me but he isn’t able to show that to me (or to anyone else) in an adequate way. He shows worry, care and blind attempts at making us healthy and happy but never something which emotionally resonates properly. I guess chasing the love of his step-mother for 70+ years without getting it doesn’t teach too well.

      Reply

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