sexual abuse

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    Every Day...Just Keep Trying

    Living with mental or physical illness can be crushing at times both mentally and emotionally. Today I didn't do much except a meditation which I have been trying to get in to. Even so, not doing much and just resting and doing things you enjoy can be rejuvenating and healing by itself. Today I forgot to take my morning meds so that kinda threw things off and I was pretty tired today but overall it was a pretty nice (somewhat boring day). The other day I wrote in my journal and now hav been experiencing emotional numbness. This will pass.

    Tomorrow I will:

    Take my meds

    Attend group therapy (sometimes I have to force myself)

    Eat well

    Spend time with my fiancé

    Do some more writing

    Maybe get some more laundry done.

    It's the little things that I accomplish that I feel proud of. I felt myself slipping into a manic episode and caught myself. I am not angry at myself for that rather I am working towards loving and accepting myself each day. We will see how the week goes. I hope you all have an awesome week whatever that looks like for you. Whatever you accomplish, be proud and reach out for help if you need it. I believe in you. Thanks for believing in me.

    #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Healing #Asthma #Therapy #Hope

    11 reactions 1 comment

    Forgiving Myself for not Knowing Better #AbuseSurvivors

    When people think of forgiveness (myself included) we tend to think that forgiveness is for another person. We often don't forgive ourselves. To be clear I am not taking accountability for being abused, that is not my responsibility. However I want to work on showing myself grace. So tonight I am going to forgive myself.

    I forgive myself for not knowing what I didn't know before. I often get down on myself for not knowing what I didn't know before. I was a child when the abuse started and I didn't realize it was abuse. I remember being confused but I couldn't label it as abuse because there was no violence involved. No threats against my safety. Part of me didn't want to believe that a family member was abusing me and maybe that's why I didn't see it as abuse.

    Even so, it was not my fault for not knowing. He knew better than to hurt me like that. That's the moral of what happened. I forgive myself for getting upset with myself when I get depressed, manic, anxious, triggered or emotionally reactive. I am slowly working on these emotions by making lifestyle changes. As I got older the abuse continued and this made me feel like for some reason it was my fault. I suppose shame and guilt are normal reactions to abuse.

    But now I forgive myself for feeling guilt and shame. I realize now that I need to show myself love, patience, forgiveness and grace. So do you. I forgive myself for not speaking to myself with respect and now I plan on doing that. What do you forgive yourself for? #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Hope #Forgiveness #Healing #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder

    18 reactions 10 comments

    Childhood Trauma Lens #SexualAssault

    Looking through the lens of childhood trauma, I would say that my perspective on things can be pretty skewed. After delving deeper into my childhood trauma and realizing that I had been groomed has actually helped me to better understand my abuse experience. My experience with childhood sexual abuse doesn't read like others. My family appeared relatively "normal". I wasn't abused in a cult or some group. I was abused in the home by a family member. I sometimes tell myself that healing would be easier if my abuser had been a random person. Now after much help, recognizing my abuser as a family member has made it easier to heal. I no longer have to tell people a story. I can be open and honest.

    I don't have to carry on with my life as if nothing were happening. Grooming is a tactic used by abusers to get close to victims so they can abuse them. In my case, I didn't realize that's what it was. I just felt like someone cared about me especially because another family member was emotionally immature and abusive. So of course I was attracted to the one that made me feel special and would get me gifts. Now I know that he just wanted to hurt me and get in my head. There were no direct threats to my safety, no violence. That's why it took me so long to label it as abuse.

    As I got older it escalated from fondling to full out sexual assault. A PTSD diagnosis sealed the deal for me. I thought that sexual violence had to be violent-I was wrong. Sexual violence was committed against me from a young age and it hurt more that when I told someone they didn't do anything. Through therapy and the help of others I can now say that speaking my truth has set me free. That abuse comes in all forms and doesn't have to be violent. If it hurt you and made you feel unsafe or violated it was abuse. I can't thank my fiancé enough for allowing me to speak my truth. Don't let anyone tell you that your truth or trauma isn't valid. It is. Keep speaking up (if it's safe) and I hope that it heals you. I know it did for me. I believe in you. Thanks for believing in me. As always stay safe and reach out for help if you need it. We are here for each other.

    #SexualAbuse #Childhoodtrauma #Hope #PTSD

    3 reactions 1 comment

    Reflections and Lessons from Surviving Abuse #AbuseSurvivors

    I used to fight mindfulness and my therapist because I didn't see the point. Recently however I have begun to see the benefits of being mindful. I am not saying that I meditate every day but I try to go throughout my day mindfully. Since I enjoy writing I have chosen to do that more mindfully. I realize that I do a lot of emotional dumping which is okay but it doesn't allow me to reflect on my experiences.

    I am trying out the DBT skills of being present and nonjudgmental. To be clear, I am not saying that being nonjudgmental means that my abusers get a free pass or anything. Only that I am trying to reflect on the lessons that I've learned. Sometimes I still grieve the loss of an illusion but grief has taught me that love was there once. I can now look back at my experiences and say that things weren't right and that there is no excuse or defense for what happened.

    They are responsible for what they did. However their lack of responsibility has no bearing on my healing journey. I choose to be nonjudgmental towards myself for how I reacted to their abuse and how the abuse effects me now as an adult. I choose to be happy and healthy and create a life for myself. Being abused has taught me a lot and I wanted to share those lessons with you.

    -Abuse is always a choice.

    -Abuse can happen within families.

    -Parents aren't perfect.

    -Abuse doesn't make you bad.

    -The abuse didn't make you stronger, you were already strong.

    -Abuse doesn't define you.

    -Your thoughts and feelings are valid.

    -It is okay to reach out for help.

    -It is okay to speak up (if it is safe). Someone will believe you.

    -The abuse and its secrets were not yours to bear.

    -If your parents were abusive it was not your job to fix them.

    -Responsibility lies with the abuser.

    Your only responsibility is to heal.

    -Your presence means something.

    -Cutting out abusive people is okay.

    -Love heals, it does not traumatize.

    -Never judge yourself for what you survived.

    -You are capable of finding meaning in your pain.

    If I think of any more I will list them. My hope is that this list helps someone. We are here for each other. Stay focused on the present and if you struggle with PTSD like I do, then accept it and work with it. Not against it. I believe in you. Thanks for believing in me. As always stay safe and seek help if you need to.

    #PTSD #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Mindfulness #Motivation

    3 reactions 4 comments

    Emotional Abuse, Abandonment and Finding Myself #AbuseSurvivors

    I become so wrapped up in the #SexualAbuse I endured that only recently have I begun to acknowledge the #EmotionalAbuse I also endured. It's not uncommon for two types of abuse to occur at once and I definitely experienced that. The manipulation, gaslighting (especially) and dismissal of my thoughts, feelings, needs and wants have left me with scars. #PTSD is no fun to live with but I thought I got it from being sexually assaulted not realizing that the emotional abuse had a hand in its development.

    As a result I suffer from low self esteem, over apologize, constantly wonder if people are mad at me, fear conflict and abandonment, doubt myself amongst other things. I often invalidate myself as well. I seek outward approval and validation and struggle with kindly to myself. I never realized that all these struggles were from the emotional abuse. I just always thought I was overly sensitive or something. I'll admit that I am also a people pleaser which is a trauma response. Either that or I freeze.

    I never realized that #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder can be caused by abandonment even though one of the criteria for the disorder is a fear of abandonment. I was abandoned (physically) by a family member after coming forward about the sexual abuse. I remember feeling so alone, unloved, unwanted and scared. Until I started reading about the effects of abandonment I never realized the effects being physically abandoned had on me.

    As I am learning more and more about emotional abuse, am naming it and am working to heal from it I can begin to move forward. Because I also experienced most of this abuse as a child, I suppose that's why I struggle as an adult. Now I am on a mission to find myself and heal myself.

    Healing is not linear but by shifting my focus to something else I can heal that part of me. My question for you all is, how do I start healing from emotional abuse and childhood trauma? I have a therapist but how do I go about doing it myself? I have tried looking inwards but that brings up hard feelings (shame, guilt, anger, sadness and confusion to name a few). I intellectually know that the shame and guilt aren't mine to carry but something about being invalidated and being abused in that way makes it hard to not feel that way.

    My hope for all of you is that if you are experiencing or did experience this type of abuse that you know it wasn't your fault. Someone chose to hurt you. I think my complexity comes in because it was family that abused me. As I posted earlier, the thoughts of the not so bad times gets in the way. The fact that the abuse wasn't occurring all the time makes it harder to heal. Just labeling it as abuse was hard.

    I hope that you can get the help that you deserve whether that be professionally or from someone you love. I believe in you, thanks for believing in me. As always seek help if you need to. We are here for each other.

    #PTSD #EmotionalAbuse #Toxic #Family #Childhoodtrauma #SexualAbuse #abandonment #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder

    6 reactions 3 comments

    Complexities of #Childhoodtrauma

    Does anyone else struggle with knowing that good memories don't outweigh bad ones? That even though you were abused the good memories don't make it okay? How do you get out of this trap?

    I do not miss my abuser nor do I not want him to go unpunished but it's difficult to describe. Can someone help with this? This is starting to make me feel really down and set back.

    #PTSD #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #ChildhoodAbuse #Complex

    10 reactions 4 comments

    Love and #Childhoodtrauma

    It’s a wonder what being loved can do. It can heal and give you a place to rest. It can also give you memories that you thought you worked on. As my fiancé and I were talking and he was once again telling me what I mean to him, I began to cry. I was never spoken about that way and had someone mean it. While I was glad he said those things they also dug up painful memories.
    My abuser was a family member and it got me thinking why he couldn’t love me the way my fiancé does. Why couldn’t he have spoken to me from a place of genuine affection? Why couldn’t he have protected me instead of hurt me? Why couldn’t he understand that his actions have an effect on me? All these why questions kinda sent me into an emotional mess. To be clear, I do not miss the abuser at all but I guess I’m not healed enough to not let words of love be tainted by memories of abuse and trauma.
    Perhaps love can help us remember what happened in a context of safety. I can’t say I was triggered in the sense I was frightened. More so triggered in the emotional sense. I know my fiancé did not do that on purpose. He never would. He has done more for me than anyone. And I love him for that more and more each day.
    Being open has taught me that not all people are out to hurt me like I thought. There are good people out there that love me despite my past. I guess I’m one of the lucky ones. Once again my fiancé taught me a valuable lesson: Love can trigger but it can also show you your value as a person. My hope is that someone can love you with a tenacity that makes you feel safe and heard. Be open with your loved ones. They only want to help. After crying the way I did I felt much better. It gave me the space to process my emotions. So don’t be afraid of love and words of encouragement and love. Trusting can be hard after abuse but it is possible. I believe in you. Thanks for believing in me. As always stay safe and reach out for help if you need to. We are here for each other.

    #PTSD #BipolarDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #SexualAbuse #EmotionalAbuse #Love #Healing #Hope #ChildhoodAbuse

    12 reactions 3 comments

    #Childhoodtrauma Memories: Navigating Healing as an Adult

    Sometimes the memories of the abuse I experienced as a child come up unexpectedly. I become so focused on the abuse I experienced as an adult (though it was a continuation of the child abuse) that I neglect the fact that I experienced abuse as a child. More recently, I began to have memories of the little things that made me feel unsafe and insecure. As an adult I was sexually assaulted but as a child I was sexually abused by a family member. I no longer have distressing vivid flashbacks but I do have thoughts of what happened. These thoughts bring up emotions that I thought I dealt with.

    I have been in therapy for a couple years now and while I have done a lot of healing I still struggle with healing my inner child. Perhaps by addressing my childhood emotions and memories I can create a clearer path towards healing as an adult. Addressing my childhood trauma and just saying that out loud makes me sad.

    I am lucky to have my support system. The more these memories and feelings come up and the more I work through them the more I can accept certain aspects. I'll admit that I struggle with wanting closure and answers. Maybe that is my inner child looking for help. Having a support network that understands my trauma has helped tremendously. The more I can acknowledge my childhood trauma and the types of abuse I experienced the more I can move forward.

    Being a survivor of both #SexualAbuse and #EmotionalAbuse has taken a toll on me as well as having various mental health conditions including #PTSD . Does anyone have any tips on addressing childhood trauma? No one wants to hear that a child was being abused but the fact is, it does happen. It happens a lot. Sometimes in families. I love my family because they have been with me through most of my healing journey and they accept me. They don't treat my differently because I was abused. With their help I can overcome anything. For this I am grateful.

    My hope is that one day my childhood trauma won't effect me as much as it does now. I am no longer an abused child but a strong and capable adult. Thank you to everyone that has supported me both on and off of this site. Just being acknowledged and believed is instrumental in my healing journey. While I still struggle with the effects of the abuse such as low self esteem and over apologizing. One day I know that I will reach my goals. You can reach yours too. I believe in you. Thank you for believing in me and for replying to my post. It means a lot. It shows me that I am not alone on my journey. We are here to help, listen to and support each other.

    I am inspired by each of your stories and I hope you are inspired by mine. Together we will overcome!


    6 reactions 1 comment

    How Someone Reacts to Disclosure Can Change Everything #AbuseSurvivors

    I already shared with you a list of lessons I have learned so far on my healing journey. Another lesson I have learned is that disclosure of abuse can be terrifying and uncertain. I had an ex-boyfriend that I disclosed my history of #SexualAbuse to. I had told him out of respect, care and awareness that the relationship might turn sexual. I was not prepared for how he reacted. All he said was "ok" then gave me a look I'll never forget. The look he gave me made me feel small, at fault and disgusted with myself. I regretted telling him. From then on, I was scared of people's reactions.

    To be clear I do not disclose to people to get pity. I disclose as a way to inform. When I met my now fiancé I didn't know he had feelings for me before he told me. Something compelled me to open up to him too though I was prepared for a negative reaction. I was surprised when he started to cry. That's when I realized that not everyone reacts negatively. His tears showed me that he cared and that the abuse bothered him.

    Disclosing isn't for everyone but I believe that if you're in a long lasting relationship that it is important for the other to know that you have experienced some form of #SexualTrauma . Like my fiancé says, disclosure allows the other person to love you how you need to be loved and they can be a partner on your healing journey. Of course, make sure you're safe when disclosing. I guess I was kinda lucky the first time, sure I got my feelings hurt but I wasn't in any physical danger.

    Please stay safe and do what works for you. Disclosure to the right person allows me to be vulnerable and open up about my struggles as well as my wants and needs. I am so glad I opened up, not only was it a release from years of keeping it a secret but it has strengthened our relationship. I also disclosed that I have #PTSD from the abuse and he was super understanding. My hope is that each of you can find someone to disclose to, it doesn't have to be a romantic partner. It can be a friend, family member, authority figure or mental health professional.

    Receiving the reaction I did from my fiancé quelled my fears of other people's reactions. Now I can accept that not everyone will understand and that is okay. As always, please stay safe and reach out for help if you need to. I hope this lesson can inspire someone today. I believe in you, thanks for believing in me.

    #SexualAbuse #PTSD

    8 reactions 4 comments

    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

    9 reactions 4 comments