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Non-Judgmental #Therapy

One of the skills I am being taught in DBT therapy is to be non-judgmental of myself and others. I am really trying to work on being non-judgmental of myself. Just accepting my thoughts and emotions as the come and as they are without judging them. I struggle with this because I fall into the trap of thinking because I am healing that I should not feel or think negative things.

I wanted to share this lesson with all of you because I think we judge ourselves too harshly. We judge ourselves for experiencing certain things, for feeling a certain way or thinking a certain way. We often beat ourselves up for a myriad of reasons and often times it is not justified.

So I think it's important that we all work on this skill. If we all work on this then maybe we can love ourselves a little more. Just accept you thoughts and emotions as they come, like waves in the ocean. Ride out the intensity and if it gets really bad, ask for help. We all deserve love from others including ourselves. Little by little we will get to where we are meant to be. Thanks for reading. I hope this helps and inspires someone today.

#Therapy #Skills #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Healing #Hope #Lessons #Life

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Saving Others When They Don't Help Themselves

I'm often told that I'm too loyal. That I try to help people to a fault. I suppose the it was the same with my abusers. I tried so hard to understand them, to save them from themselves and whatever they were running from. It hits much harder when the abusers are family members. As a child I was trapped and was forced to endure years of sexual and emotional abuse. Still I strove to see the good in them, or so I thought there was good in them. I partially blame myself because maybe if I hadn't seen them the way I wanted to see them and instead saw them for who they are, maybe I wouldn't struggle so much.

Then it hit me one day, no matter what illusion I had created the facts were clear: Families do not abuse, lie, manipulate and keep secrets. They don't pretend to keep up appearances either. Yet, growing up that is all I knew. Even into my adulthood before I spoke up I lived as if I was a child.

I try not to be so hard on myself because as a child my options were limited, it wasn't my fault my family wasn't healthy. Now things that didn't use to haunt me, do. I still lock up and freeze during confrontation or I give in. Two things I wish I didn't do. Despite being in therapy for 4 years I still have a lot to work through and a lot to learn. One thing I have learned however is this: You cannot save people, even if your intentions are good. I cried for days after learning this. I suppose the reason I wanted to say them was because I wanted to be seen, loved, heard and validated. I just thought that if I worked a little harder or did better that I could make them stop their abuse, I could make them better people. Sad thing is, I can't do that. People won't change unless they want to-including family. I now how to redefine family for myself. Slowly I am learning that even though there were good times in between the abuse that the abuse still occurred. Slowly I am learning a lot of things that will help me heal completely. As heartbreaking as that lesson was for me, it really opened my eyes. I cannot make them do what I want. I cannot make them apologize. I cannot make them see they were wrong. All I can do is move on and do the best I can. Live the life I create for myself and continue to heal, learn and grow. Thank you for allowing me to share this with all of you. As always, stay safe and reach out if you need to. We are here for each other.

#SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Family #ChildhoodAbuse #SexualAssault #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #Hope #Healing #Lessons #Life

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Making The Most Out of My Experiences #AbuseSurvivors

I have been out of the abusive situations for four years now (this being the fourth year). In that time I have learned a lot about people, myself and life in general. During a moment of reflection and mindfulness I realized how blessed I am to have what I have. Sure I came from a broken home but now I have a family that loves, supports and believes in me no matter what. That means a lot to someone that has been invalidated by her own family. I cannot tell you how many tears I've cried, how many questions I've asked or how many scars I gave myself. I can only share the lessons that I have learned so far with you. Those lessons have taught me to make the most of my experience.

-Abusive families exist.

-There is nothing wrong with cutting toxic people out of your life.

-Your experiences are only a part of you but they do not define you.

-It is okay to ask for and receive help.

-It is okay to come forward about your experience. Someone will believe you.

-It is okay to be scared, angry, confused, hurt or any other emotion. They are valid and deserve space.

-Families aren't perfect.

-Time always shows a person's true colors in the end.

-It is possible to be hurt by someone you trusted but this does not make you a bad person.

-The abuse was not and never will be your fault.

-Abuse is a choice, someone chose to hurt you.

-There are consequences for everything.

-It is okay to be healing one day and to fall apart the next, this does not make you weak.

-Healing is not linear.

-Love does not hurt and leave you traumatized. What happened was not love.

-You can and will heal.

-It's important to have a support system.

-Each day is a new opportunity to heal and move forward.

-It's okay to validate yourself, you are not selfish.

-You deserve to be heard.

-Your presence makes a difference (trust me I attempted suicide)

I hope these lessons can help someone today. As I keep learning, I will post more. Everyday I am working on myself and slowly getting to where I want to be. Again, please stay safe and reach out for help if you need to. You are not alone. I believe in you. Thanks for being here and for believing in me. I appreciate it.

#SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #SexualAssault #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #Life #Lessons #coping #Hope #Inspiration

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Surviving abuse has taught me that you can still be a decent person. You do not have to become what hurt you. You are not what happened to you. You are more than that. Before I got help, I was angry and distrustful. You can be happy and still have bad days. You can thrive despite what happened to you. There are opportunities for growth. I am still grappling with coming to the realization that I have come this far. I still have my days where I get scared, have breakdowns and get depressed. I am not fully healed yet but I have come a long way. There are so many lessons that I have learned that have helped me. I can be loved and accepted despite my past, I can't change people, and my worth is not dependent on others. I still have nightmares sometimes and get triggered but I can handle it better now than in the past. I have the ability to create the life I want. I am trying to be more positive and grateful. I wrote this to share with you all that you can be hurt but still shine. I hope this inspires someone today.

#BipolarDisorder #PTSD #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #SexualAbuse #SexualAssault #SuicideSurvivor #selfharmsurvivor #Hope #Life #Inspiration #Lessons #Asthma #Motivation

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The future

What happens next?? .. its a question I find has been on my mind for quite a while. My options are limited as is funding. It makes my stomach cringe to think about big things like whats ahead. And too many questions are still left unanswered.
Personally I don't see much ahead for me aside from more stress and life long pain and somehow I am supposed to over come that and live when I really don't have the will too.. I'd say it sucks I'm too chicken**** to end things, but I know my mother appreciates that and also knows I could never do that to her.
It's a weird time to be figuring life out. In one sense there is so much out there, but I have more than just my mental health to take into consideration now. Learning what my limits are physically as I understand my recent MS diagnoses has been more difficult than I like to admit. It's frustrations are mostly around symptoms I never thought I would have to deal with or ones I didn't expect I would deal with so early in life. Not that I was an especially active person, but I enjoyed getting out when I went out. And not being able to voice myself or speak even adequately when i have always been such an articulate person... is it wrong that the most frustrating part is how understanding people have been??
I have a long road ahead. And there is never an end to the lessons and learning. #future #Anxiety #MentalHealth #lifechanges #Depression #MultipleSclerosis #Recovery #learning #Lessons


Love and Conflict #Love #Conflict #Trauma #feelings #Relationships #promises #Lessons #resolution #Hope

Promises take flight from our lips like migrating birds. Many times, without comprehending why--simply determined to reach a safe, familiar harbor where warmth and sustenance can be found.

Assurances are exchanged like goods. Offers to provide unconditional love, constant happiness, security, safety, and, that which we may not even be capable of. We hope to give what we believe the other needs. Not realizing that what we offer is often our own greatest need.

No one goes in believing they may disappoint. Err. Wound.

The truth is, love leaves you completely open to the potential for pain.

Why can't we simply enjoy what time we have together? Why can't we like children, laugh, play and live lightly? Why can't we put past pains and grief behind us?

We all have someone who raised, guided, or provided insight into life early on. Even those without parents. These 'guides' may have been supportive and kind, thoughtful and intentional, irritable and callous, cold and distant, or at worst...monstrous. Albeit, human. It is the one flaw we all share. We are human.

That which is bestowed upon us (or the lack thereof) early in life has a profound impact on the nature of our interactions and how we function in relationships. Especially the most intimate ones. Some of us jump in feet first with reckless abandon--only to find that there are sharks swimming below the surface. Others walk the shore alone, maybe joining paths briefly with a fellow traveler, but going on to live in a state of wonder as to what could be. Ever noncommittal, yet hopeful. Some simply sit on the sand bundled up, admiring the beauty from afar. Maybe content with a life of self-partnership. Some walk hand-in-hand, looking forward and not back. Knowing that despite the ever-changing weather, together they can battle what may lie ahead.

Like our Mother Earth, relationships are riddled with sunshine, storms, rainbows, and even life-threatening tornadoes for some. Each of us has a different animal instinct when it comes to dealing with conflict. Some of us want to get closer--in attempts to feel reassured. Some retreat and pull away--as they cannot handle the depth of emotion. Some seemingly don't take it seriously and pretend there is no problem--a mirage to cloak their pain and grief. Yet others lash out, putting up a shield against transparency and vulnerability.

Whatever the impact of the early years of our lives, we are all in a vessel. Simply rowing, simply trying to stay afloat. Simply wanting to be loved.

Conflict can be a message. A lesson. If approached in the appropriate fashion, used as a tool. Conflict resolution can lead us out from sheltering, to set our faces to the warmth of another sunny day.


𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞

"all will be alright in time"
maybe when we learned all the #Lessons life teaches us. maybe when we fought strong all the #battles . maybe when we finally stood up from our #fall . maybe that’s the #time we can say “we’re fine”. we’re still #alive after all, a thing to be grateful for. because all our labour is never in vain. and it’s a matter of time and perspective till we get there. so hang on!

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#growth Through #Experiences

Everday, whether good or bad, #depressed, #anxious, or genuinely #happy, I like to try and find the lesson I’m being taught through my #experience . Today, I learned how much #Love I have in me for others, and how much #socialssupport I have. Always #grateful for #Lessons.


#Lessons I learned while my daughter was battling #Cancer

My daughter, #TaylorMatthews, was diagnosed with #childhoodcancer at eleven years old. Her only symptom was shortness of breath while playing sports, which her pediatrician believed was caused by exercise-induced asthma. You can imagine our shock when a follow-up routine pulmonary exam revealed Taylor had cancer.

From day one, Taylor would not allow cancer to stop her from living a full life. She was a force of nature, a kid with , never a “ kid.” She simply refused to let it define her. Time and time again, she endured her treatments and then quickly rebounded despite pain and life compromises. I found it incomprehensible that she could concentrate on the next item on life’s agenda and look past the hurdles. But, she made the most out of every day, living life on her own terms. Cancer was a sideline even though it infiltrated almost every aspect of our lives.
The very best medicine Taylor received came in the form of #love and #laughter. She was a trickster at heart, always scheming to have fun. Nothing changed when she got sick. Taylor was not a victim but rather, she was living proof to friends, family and medical professionals alike that and fun do go hand-in-hand.
Taylor’s exuberance was infectious and the hospital staff adored her. Taylor and our family pushed the envelope in every way possible. Many times when we were told no, she was too sick to do this or that, we did it anyway, and the memories in our hearts prove it was well worth it. She seemed unstoppable, making even the most jaded #oncologists believe she would beat the odds.
In the end she ran out of time; there were no more options left to treat her and the went rogue. Taylor lost her battle at sixteen years old, almost five years after her initial diagnosis.

Taylor’s love and concern for others lives on today through the #TaylorMatthewsFoundation, a tay-bandz organization, which she founded within the first few months of diagnosis. Her foundation, a 501 (C) 3 non-profit, is dedicated to raising awareness and funding pediatric #cancerresearch.
In memory and honor of Taylor, I co-authored the book, #PaintYourHairBlue- A Celebration of Life with #HopeforTomorrow in the Face of Pediatric cancer.in addition to telling my story, weaved throughout this book are a myriad of #invaluableanecdotes and tips that will make the reader a far better warrior in the war on cancerYou will come away from the book with a vivid understanding of how truly short and #preciouslife is and a greater willingness to add more color as we go along.