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Self doubting thoughts

Any other child abuse survivors constantly questioning their right to call themselves such? There’s also a thought in my head telling me I’m a liar. But when I tell people my life story they clearly see it as me being abused. But then I wonder if I’m just that convincing or perhaps we’re both liars. Idk why I do this to myself. And I don’t know how to make it stop. Part of my problem is I love my adoptive mom a lot. But she is abusive. But sometimes she’s not. And I wonder if people saw her on a good day. Would they call me liar for claiming abuse? Because we look “so normal and happy?”

#CPTSD #PTSD #Abuse #Trauma #ChildAbuse #Enmeshment #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder

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What is enmeshment?

Enmeshment occurs in families where distinct boundaries do not exist from one person to the next. In essence, a child may be viewed as an extension of the parent and not allowed any kind of autonomy or differentiation.

One form of enmeshment is parentification, which occurs when a child is tasked with taking care of a parent’s needs whether because of divorce or mental illness and can lead to a child negating their own needs.

Here’s a great description of this type of abuse: themighty.com/2018/09/parentification-emotional-abuse

Again, this is a type of abuse with which I am intimately familiar. My mother was divorced, had her own unresolved childhood trauma and struggled with undiagnosed mental health issues. Her inability to cope on her own meant that I was tasked with caring for her basic needs as a child and I never felt like I had a chance to actually be a child because I always had to be the responsible adult. That often leaves me feeling like I was robbed of an actual childhood and never really had the opportunity to develop a sense of my own likes, personality or individuality.

Have you experienced this type of abuse? If so, how has it affected you as an adult?

#Trauma #PTSD #CPTSD #Enmeshment #Parentification #ChildAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #EmotionalNeglect #Parenting

Parentification: The Type of Emotional Abuse We Don't Talk About

"My childhood was stolen from me."

Triggered By Daughters Day

I’m finding all these effusive posts about daughters and their moms triggering, particularly since I’m estranged from my mother. My choice. She did the best she could but was covertly incestuous, emotionally neglectful and overly enmeshed. Boundaries weren’t working so going no contact was my best option. Yet not a day goes by where I don’t feel guilt because I know she’s still hoping I’ll miraculously change my mind and we can “go back to being a family like before.” And that’s not going to happen for the foreseeable future. Part of me wishes I could literally disavow myself as her daughter, divorce her if it were. I fantasize about having never been born or having different parents. I don’t blame happy families for celebrating their love but I do resent it somewhat which makes me feel like a crappy person. Anyhow, im trying to avoid social media as much as possible today but it’s almost impossible to avoid completely. Anyone else? #daughtersday #Estrangement #Enmeshment #Parentifiedchild #Guilt #Sadness

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Enmeshment and Estrangement

I grew up in a dysfunctional family of 6. My oldest brother ended his life when he was about 12 or 13. I’m not sure because his suicide was kept a secret and was never spoken of. I was about 5 when he died. My mom was at the center of most family dynamics. Most days I walked around on eggshells for fear of setting her off in an angry tirade. My father and siblings did the same. As I got older and started to show some independence, things became worse. I was made to feel guilty and was shamed by others in my family for being ‘selfish’. I’ve come to realize that my mother may have had BPD but she had no formal diagnosis (my Mom would have to admit to her own failings in order to seek therapy, which would never happen). I am now 54 and still feel the impact of the enmeshment that consumed our family and, most especially, still tethers me to my mother even to this day. I’ve been attending therapy for many years and have come to better understand that I pretty much experienced anxiety, perfectionism, and the need to people please for most of my life. I admit I was and am an HSP and an empath so absorb all feelings, good and bad, from those around me. Even now, as I right this, I feel like I’m being disloyal to my mother. I mean, is it really my mother and family’s fault that I was a sensitive child? Oh, and did I mention I am the only adopted sibling in my family? Unfortunately, I had to break free about 10 years ago and have been estranged from my family ever since. They likely feel it’s them against me as I became the obvious scapegoat. I chose to step out of the role that had been created for me and it’s like no one knew how to handle that so simply not talking to me (even after years of b’day and Mother’s Day cards) was the route they could all agree on. I am now married to an amazing man who helped me to regain my own sense of self. I was lost and I’m just starting to find myself. I still have a need for validation so if this resonates with you in any way, I’d love to hear from you. You are not alone. #BPD #Enmeshment #Estrangement



Wrote my first full chapter of my book yesterday. Titled “I love you even if you are crazy” which is how I always signed all my cards from the time I was little to my mom. It’s a recounting of the day my mom had her bankruptcy hearing which devolved completely into her self harming in the car on the way home and my almost crashing my car. It was the day I decided I needed to go no contact with her. My head has been spinning since then. #Trauma #vulnerability #PTSD #CovertIncest #Enmeshment #Parentification


Dating a divorced dad with 16 y/o daughter. Enmeshed?

I'm divorced with 2 boys (about to be 14 and 9), and am dating a divorced man with a teenage daughter who is about to turn 16. I think she is amazing, and she and I really get along well. We've been dating for a little over 2 years, live separately, but less than 2 mins away from each other, and we are in a serious relationship. We've talked about moving in together, etc. I love him very, very much, but I also need to ensure that moving in together would be the right move for ALL of us, not just me or him. Here's where the things started to get sticky, and I started to notice some "things." He very recently got full custody of his daughter (long story). Now that she is at his house 7 days/week, I am noticing more how they interact with one another, and it's striking me as a bit...strange. I have kids. myself, so I am familiar with parent/child relationships. Suddenly, we can't seem to make ANY plans until he checks in with his daughter to see what her plans are...but she sleeps ALL day and awakes late afternoon; she's in a vicious cycle of staying up till 4am and FaceTiming with her boyfriend (that's another story). He will not plan anything until he knows her plans. Recently, another couple made dinner reservations for 4 (2 couples date night, fancy restaurant), and a few hours before the dinner, he texts me to see if she can come. On our date night. A 16 year old with 2 other couples. I thought that was a bit odd, so I said I would check if we could get another seat added to the table (this is during Phase 1 of Covid). It was getting difficult to change the reservation at that point, so I asked him if it would be a big deal if she didn't come this time. Well, he ended up NOT going, at all. I went alone, 3rd wheel. When the 3 of us are together (either his house or out), I feel like I'm the 3rd wheel. It's the strangest feeling, and I've never experienced it before. Here's the REALLY, REALLY uncomfortable part for me...he tells her everything. I mean everything. If we have an argument (we don't scream and yell/fight; I feel like we really listen to one another and take turns talking, so we can each hear what we're saying), or a disagreement...he will go home and then talk it out with her. Get her advice. And I'm talking deep, adult type of relationship issues...like divorce issues, dealing with exes, my kids and him. I'm just not comfortable with that because I feel like it's violating the sanctity of our romantic relationship. I just became aware, or in-touch, with my feelings over the past few days. I went with them to visit his parents and brother (and was the first time I met them), and over the course of the weekend, I started to notice how he babies her. I'm actually worried about her, too. This can't be healthy for a developing teen who, at this age, should be becoming more independent and breaking away from parents than displaying this type of weirdness. This is all new to me. Any thoughts/advice/comments? AM I CRAZY???