I’ve been abused my whole life. It only occurred to me when I turned 40 and someone close said, “If it was my intention to hurt you, it would be abuse.” That set off a massive light bulb and I started researching the hell out of it. I learned about the kind I’ve mostly had: covert, emotional manipulation and neglect.
My parents are both traumatized. So are my grandparents. So are their parents, probably. My mother and father should never had gotten together. I grew up in a war zone where they were fighting, literally, every few minutes. They still do. My sister was the golden child and I was the scapegoat. My father was raised with the patriarchal belief of dad as the ruler, mom as the caretaker, daughters as the showpieces, and sons as the go-getters. My mom, I believe, was trapped in a role she didn’t want and her children stressed her out beyond her capability to live well. I grew up with the trappings of misogyny, fighting parents, an unstable mother, and a role I really didn’t want to have. When I was eight years old, we moved and I lost all my friends. I never recovered from that and never got a close friend again until adulthood. I was alone most of my childhood. I call myself the revered scapegoat or the emotional piggy bank. My therapist calls me Cinderella. I was there when people needed me and put aside when they didn’t. To recent days, I was the one everyone called when they needed to dump their emotional stress and when they felt better, they withdrew and I was left with the weight of it all. I learned to internalize other peoples mess really well so I wouldn’t be abandoned completely.
At the age of eighteen, I met my husband while on a camping trip in BC. He was my rescuer. His family and friends were the complete opposite of mine and I felt freedom by being away from my family every time I visited his hometown. His family is the polar opposite of mine. At the time, I thought they were healthy and peaceful because they are quiet; they never yell and they always get along. I have learned now that they are in a deep freeze of living the same life with the same rules and beliefs for generations. No emotions are shared. Lots of sarcasm and mocking of those that don’t fit their box of comfort. Every conversation is the same topic and it’s all superficial. There are roles to play for every family member. Children are raised with care and attention like all children should be but something happens when they become older and closer to puberty; the expectations of what is “successful” behaviour start to trickle in and there is a slow and steady formation of roles for living and emotional shutdown. My husband, has been affected greatly by this. His family has generations of trauma as well, just not as volatile as mine.
We did long distance for five years while we were in university. After we graduated, I moved to his city and the rest is a blur. I don’t remember how or what but every year, I became less of myself and more of his Cinderella. Without our awareness, both of our traumas grew roots into each other and we became the roles we were raised to be instead of who we actually wanted to be. I didn’t realize this until I hit forty. I have been silenced and molded to be the wife I should be. Him, the husband he should be. Our work as it should be. Our family and friends connections as it should be. Everything was “as it should be.”
Under my marriage, I lost my independence in every way possible. I lost my fiery voice and my drive to learn and explore life. I lost my healthy. I lost my work. I lost my independence in every way possible. I was sick as a child too but I went from a free-spirited young adult to being scared of my own mind and life choices. I drowned in the comfort zone of slipping away into nothing. It’s so easy to do, you don’t even notice it.
When I was 40, I tried to ween off citalopram (SSRI) and my entire world collapsed. My nervous system went berserk with the withdrawal. At this point, I became aware of medical trauma and how the allopathic, psychiatric industry has damaged my body on a cellular level. Down the rabbit hole I went again, to research and learn how deeply embedded medical trauma is in our society, especially for women, people of colour, those with disabilities, and like me, those with mental illness and history of abuse. I discovered so much harm done to me through dental visits, medical prescription negligence, and the gaslighting of how “everything is in my head and to take a pill to fix myself.” Along with my trauma from abuse and misogyny, I now became aware of how much the medical system hurt me too.
While trying to ween off medication, one of my dogs was dying of old age sickness and I was becoming aware of my marriage problems on a deep level. During this time, my childhood abuse I had suppressed all my life decided to rear it’s ugly head. I broke big time. That’s when I started therapy and was diagnosed with CPTSD. That is my official diagnosis but I also have post concussion syndrome, ADHD, and probably borderline personality disorder. My therapist has been my saving grace. I adore her. I have also done neurofeedback therapy, craniosacral therapy, and homeopathy. All have been helpful.
I have massive attachment issues which is the core of all my wounds and symptoms. My core wounds are being abandoned, rejected, betrayed, and discarded. My five biggest harmful belief systems are, “I can’t do it,” “I have no one to back me,” I’m all alone,” I’m stuck and can’t get out,” and “I’m going to fail and be punished for not meeting expectations set for acceptance.” I have internalized my abusers deeply and call them my inner punishers. They are relentless at keeping me hyper vigilant and frozen in fear at the same time. I have gotten pretty good at managing them but when I’m triggered, they come back in force.
The biggest things I want for myself is safety, peace, passion, and a family/tribe I can rely on and can be with on a regular basis.
July 2020, I lost my last dog and the grief has hit me hard. Recently, I’ve decided to make a huge change in my life and I feel like my world is turning upside down again. It’s triggering me a lot and I feel like I’m trauma bonded to my old life because it’s all I’ve known. I’ve lived my life with my support systems being my ones that have hurt me too. Leaving this behind to regain my independence is shutting me down with horror to my core as “what if” could happen to me in the future. Lots of dread coming up.
Ok, on to the better stuff. I’ve been in therapy since 2016 and am seeing changes in my well being. I’m finding my voice again. I’m also finding my passion to pursue projects, connect with others, and enjoy the little things in life again. I can better access my emotions and let them pass through me instead of feeling stuck in depression or anxiety. I have discovered an inner talent for writing and art. I am moving more and reconnecting with my body by loving it instead of loathing it. Lots of dread about confronting others, doing daily chores, taking care of myself, and dissociating is slowly melting away. I’m engaging more with myself and life.
I am making a big shift out of trauma and into my core self, finding my own power and feeling more calm in my body and mind. This has brought out a deep layer of self abuse wanting to sabotage it and I’m finding this difficult. This is my current challenge.
While I figure this out, I have created this website. It’s my story as well as an informational site on healing trauma. I share a lot of educational resources here.
I discuss trauma on all levels: relational, societal, medical, and more. There is a big focus on abuse towards women as I have encountered this deeply on a personal and social level. I believe that most of harm done in our society is through the impact of the patriarchy and its impact on every social problem we’ve had in history: colonialism, imperialism, classicism, sexism, racism, religion, education, legislation, and far, far more. I have studied this extensively and provide what I’ve learned in my blogs as well as the book recommendation section.
I hope you enjoy the site. If you do, you’re invited to make a donation to help keep it up. I do not work because of CPTSD. This site is a labour of love for everyone going through the same, rough path I am and is looking for support.
Donate to help keep the site up.
Hi. I don’t work due to CPTSD and would love donations to help me pay for this site. This site is a work of passion for helping others heal from harm. Thank you.