This post is the result of a comment that I received on my last post "What Childhood Incest Taught Me". You will find the words from the comment here in italics when I quote it.
Warning this comment and post may be triggering.
I came through here looking for something inspirational to read and this is what I've found. I am feeling overwhelmingly sad for whoever this is. That life is one noone would choose to bare or even wish on the worst of people.
For inspirational, you picked the wrong post. And for "whoever this is", that is me. These were the lessons that I learned. I know from other comments and friends that these were also lessons that they learned from their own childhoods of abuse.
For anyone who has read my blog for very long, you know that some of my blog posts are inspirational. Some of my blog posts are about the very real facts, feelings, memories and stages of living with and dealing with the effects of incest. There is nothing inspirational about those posts. Yes, I know that some of them are difficult to read. They are also difficult for me to write even though I am in a better place in my life today. Sometimes I still feel the pain, sadness, anger and hurt of that abuse. Those blog posts I write are for other abuse survivors to let them know what my own experiences have been and to let them know that they are not alone. I have been there. I know it for the hell that it can be, especially when you feel so alone and so sad that you wonder if life is even worth living. I have always managed to take the next step. Sometimes it is two steps forward and one step back. That is the road to recovery. There is nothing easy about it.
For your experiences, all of you, I am truly heartbroken.
Thank you for your compassion and empathy. They are appreciated.
But there is something you each must realize. You each have suffered, in your own time, some of you maybe once or twice, others for years. But those times are not here, those years are not these years.
Part of my comment reply to this comment fits here: My question to you is, "Have you experienced any major trauma or abuse in your life?" It doesn't sound like it. If you haven't, you have no idea what it is like or how difficult it is to get over it.
You have to realize that sometimes life hands us so much... and all the while the world is so cruel. We start to feel like that is all that is ever to be dealt us. But it just isn't. You must each move on. I know you may think that this is impossible. But I know that as you read this those encounters are distant, very real, experiences. Key word being distant.
You have probably never had flashbacks or nightmares or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Soldiers aren't the only ones who get PTSD. Survivors of child abuse and survivors of sexual abuse do too. When those symptoms happen, you are not in control of your feelings or actions. You can be thrown back into "those years". Nobody wants that to happen but it does, sometimes on a daily basis. It takes years of therapy to recover from these. "Key word being distant." There is nothing distant about those years when you are in the middle of a flashback or nightmare. You can tell me they aren't real but when you are in the middle of it, they are very real. Have you ever had a flashback? If not, you don't know what you are talking about.
You are each holding so closely to something that with every single thought of it your heart breaks inside. Why are you choosing to hold on?
Why would anyone choose to hold on to the kind of emotional pain that most people can't even imagine, if they had a choice? Just choosing to be happy sounds like a really good reality but it is very often the road to denial. I did that road for a lot of years. That road that says, "I don't feel anything about the incest. I don't hate my abusers. I don't hate myself. I don't feel anything so I can't be affected by the incest. It doesn't affect my life, my decisions, my children, me. Life is fine. Life is great." The road to denial is a road of lies. I was disconnected from my feelings, from myself. I did hate myself. I did hate my abusers. I was so full of rage, sadness and hurt that I couldn't feel anything else. If you deny any feelings, you deny them all. I had a volcano of fire inside of me that caused headaches, stomach aches and other physical symptoms that shows what I was holding in rather than dealing with. I was taught all of this denial as a child. The denial didn't stop until I got sick and realized that denial didn't work. That is the real world of an incest survivor.
Just letting go of all of the pain isn't really an option until you have worked through all of your issues. Then the letting go is possible. Is it an instant possibility, just in the case of a miracle. I do believe in miracles. I also know that denial is alive and well until I choose to let go of it and face the reality of incest.
You have to realize that you are something amazing on the inside. That the real true parts of us are ones that NO ONE can touch but you.
I can agree with the above statement. On the spiritual level, my Higher Self is untouchable by what happens to my body. The truth is that each of us is a Light to the world. Sometimes that Light does get hidden by the struggles of Life. This isn't something that a child who is being abused or an adult who is still suffering from the abuse is even aware of. On a spiritual level, I can even say that "Yes, I chose this lifetime to learn the lessons that incest teaches me. My parents chose to help teach me those lessons." It has taken me years to reach the level of acceptance that this requires. Most abuse survivors aren't there yet. Do I condemn them as stupid or not whole or anything else derogatory because they aren't at this level of understanding yet? No, not at all. There are still some days that I question the validity of those beliefs and they are my own. Do I expect everyone else to accept and live by those "spiritual" beliefs? Again, no, not at all. Is it ok if you disagree with me? Yes, absolutely. Do I want to hear how you disagree with me? Only if it is offered in a respectful manner.
What happened to you, happened to your body. And you each, understandably, allowed it to alter more than just your body. You let your spirits still feel the pain.
I don't know about you but, yes, I live in a physical world which affects my mental and emotional world. I believe that my spiritual world encompasses all of the others and uses those others to teach its lessons. I eventually see the blessings that come from going through the pain but not until I have worked through the pain.
Again you used the word "let" as if the victim of abuse knows that they have choices. Victims don't know that they have choices. Choices didn't exist for me for many, many years because I believed the lies of the abuser who told me he was in control and that I had to do what he told me to do. I had no choices until I got into a recovery program and learned what choices meant. That is when I learned that I was responsible for my own life and my own choices. That is a very big lesson for survivors. Not everyone learns that lesson.
Just imagine yourself as a light inside a dark cave. No matter how dark it is on the outside, no matter how it may storm, it doesn't change that there is light on the inside. You are safe because you are that light.
As an incest survivor, I didn't learn that the world was a safe place. Yes, I have always been aware of that inner Light. That inner Light is probably the only thing that kept me from splitting into different personalities as some childhood abuse survivors do. My Spirit has always been and will always be safe. My physical world has never felt safe.
You are you at the happiest moments in your life, not the you that always returns home to your pain.
You live in a world of duality---Light and Dark, Love and Fear, Good and Evil, Day and Night, Sad and Happy, Calm and Chaos. You can't have one without the other. Without Sad how would you know what Happy is? Without Evil how would you know what Good is? Without Fear how would you know what Safe is or Love is? Hate isn't the opposite of Love, Fear is. Lack of Love equals Fear. You can't know what the "happiest moments in your life" are unless you know what the worst moments of your life are.
Let it go now. Move on. Decide you have this one life, and no matter what the world will ever throw at you will never matter.
I have discovered that those people who tell me to "Let it go now. Move on." are usually one of two types. They either have never experienced what I have and therefore know nothing about the process that it takes to heal. Or, they have their own abuse issues that they want to stay in denial of. If you see me going through my issues and haven't dealt with your own, then my struggle threatens your denial. That is why you tell me to let it go and to move on so that you don't have to become aware of your own unresolved issues.
I feel sad for those who are still in denial of their own issues. I have little sympathy for those who don't know what they are talking about because they have never experienced what I have. If you haven't been there, you have no idea of what it takes to live my life and to struggle to get better. Don't tell me to get over it. If you have been where I am and were able to let go of your issues by healing them, then tell me how you did it. Share your experiences and what worked. Don't share your denial of your issues. I don't need that. I did that, on my own, years ago and I know that denial just helps you continue to live in the pain. Denial heals nothing. When you are in denial, you aren't happy. You aren't free. The only way to freedom is through the pain, not around it.
You are stronger now than anyone will ever know. You can take this world on and actually live free from your past.
Yes, I am stronger than even I knew that I would ever be. I am more courageous than I ever thought I could be. I am more compassionate that I ever thought possible. I am proud to be the woman that I am today. I am the best parent that I know how to be to my inner child.
I don't live completely free from my past. I don't believe that that is totally possible. I don't know that I would want it to be. My past has formed who I am today. Without that past I would not be stronger, more courageous, compassionate, proud of who I am today. Without my past, I would not be aware of the blessings of my life today. Yes, today, I can take on whatever the world throws at me. This is true because of my past.
Some of you maybe have already found a church. But some of you may feel like there are far too many questions. But all I can say is...you can walk make the decision to just say goodbye to all that stuff you can't bring back or change. And never have to think about it again. The person that hurt you had their free will, and they chose to storm boldly away from what was right, and you suffered. That makes it the fault of no one but them, not you and definitely not God. Choose to forget and start living your life in the light. Remember these bodies die, but we will never die. Where are you headed, and lets make it great! "Love your neighbor as yourself" said someone very special. It's great advice. Good Luck.
The comment about finding a church can be a future post all of its own. I "found a church", but many others, not just survivors, choose differently. I am happy with my church. That is my choice.
I don't blame God for what happened to me. I never have. I know that some survivors do. I did turn my back on God for a few years because I thought He did nothing to stop the abuse. A part of me always felt His presence in my life. That presence is what gave me the strength to survive when many others didn't.
I know that some don't believe in a God who could allow such abuses to happen to a child. Others look to God for grace and love. I believe in free will and that you are each responsible for your own actions. I know that some of the abused go on to abuse the next generation. Most of you don't. Many choose to stop the abuse rather than pass it on to future generations.
Some of you choose to share your own experiences, as I do, by blogging about them online. Others choose to write in private journals. Some of you still continue in the silence because you haven't found your voice yet. It is for other incest and childhood abuse survivors that I write of my experiences. Any time that someone survives abuse in any form and can write about that journey, that is inspirational. It isn't light, funny inspiration. It is sad, thoughtful, sometimes tearful. It is always heartfelt. Sometimes it comes from a deep well of hurt. It is always healing to be able to bring these thoughts and feelings to the surface and share them with others. It can be educational to share with others who have never experienced abuse in their own lives. Without awareness, you can stop nothing.
If you come here looking for happy and joyful and light, sometimes you will find it here. Other times you won't. I won't apologize for my words. This is my life. I share it to give strength and hope to other survivors. I also share it to spread awareness of the evil disease of abuse that lives in this world. I look forward to hearing what you think about this post and any other post that you want to comment on. I reserve the right to agree or disagree with your comments.