Thursday, July 16, 2015

How Could You Ever Think A Terrible Thing

As I was growing up, I continuously and repeatedly heard from my father that no matter what, family always sticks together.  He would strenuously insist that as a family we loved each other and by God we were always going to love one another.  If we didn't, he would be knocking some heads together.

Looking now at what has become of my family, I wonder where the family is.  We never talk.  I haven't talked to anyone in years and really don't have a desire or plan to do this.  It was my only way to survive by cutting off contact with my family.  It was the only way I could begin to slow down the anxiety attacks, begin dealing with the depression, and stop looking for ways to kill myself.

As a kid, I was super attached to my parents.  If I went to summer camp for a week, I was an emotional wreck.  I could not stand to be away from them for even one second.  This was in spite of all that was being done to me.  I attached to those that hurt me.

For me growing up and being abused, I was isolated from the other members of the family.  When the abuse happened, most of the time it was when I was alone with the monster.  So, I had no way to know that it was going on with the other members.  In each instance, it was often told to me that this is the way they showed God's love to me.

Additionally, I was told that if I said anything, I would be responsible for breaking up the family.  When  you combine that with my super attachment to my family, it was some of the most horrifying abuse I think a child like myself could go through.

As the small little child, I learned that "how could you ever think such a terrible thing" was the norm in my life.  I was shamed and chastised for even thinking this way, even after I was recovering from a Conversion Disorder.  Even after I was away from my family, the words and thoughts I had been taught about breaking up the family haunted me and prevented me from going into the horrors in therapy.

I can still remember being 1400 miles away from home and completely frightened that my family would find me in the therapists office telling the family secrets.  These things are powerful to a kid that has been abused and even though you are removed from the situation, they don't easily lessen.

It takes a lot of work, a compassionate therapist, and much courage to walk through the fires of healing and recovery.  When you're not supposed to think such a terrible thing, how can you even begin to recover.  That, in itself is the problem and to recover, means that you somehow have to find your way through it and make peace with it.

Blog Post And Images (c) 6/15/15 by Don Shetterly

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