Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Beginning Of Who I Am Is Rooted In Incest

I am not the incest and it has helped to define who I am. A friend on Twitter recently told me that the abusers didn't steal the real me. Here are the Tweets that I sent back to him. I wanted to share this message with my readers.

For awhile, yes, they did steal me. The me you see today is not who I might have been without the abuse.

I could have been a better or a worse version of who I am today but either one would have been a different me.

Who I am today is because of my struggles with incest and my healing from incest. A person I am proud to be today.

Some of my choices when I was still struggling were not beneficial to me or my family.

I do love me today. For many years, because of the incest, I hated myself.

When I started healing at age 38, I didn't know who I was and didn't know what I wanted or needed.

Nothing changed until I started to love myself.

I love some of the conversations that get started on Twitter.  When I first started on Twitter, I didn't know how useful it would be for reaching out to other incest survivors but a friend suggested I give it a try. I am glad that she did. I have met so many survivors on Twitter. I still use my Facebook page but I use Twitter more.  Some of the survivors that I have met are still full of rage and the pain of their childhoods. Others have done healing of their issues and are experiencing joy and peace in their lives and, like me, are reaching out to other survivors. Either way, I can and do tell them that they are worth the work of healing.

I made the words of my last Tweet above in bold letters because I want to acknowledge that Nothing changed until I started to love myself. I will keep telling you over and over again here and on Twitter that loving yourself is the most important gift you can ever give yourself. Loving yourself is the key to opening the door of healing and you are worth it.

Feel free to comment on any or all of my above Tweets. I look forward to hearing from you.


Colleen said...

Amen! I am glad you are passing on that message.

Patricia Singleton said...

Colleen, my friend, thank you and I so appreciate your continued support here on my blog. We have shared our journeys for awhile now and seen each other grow through the pain. You are a courageous and caring woman. I am proud to know you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. I knew there was something which stood out especially for me this morning, when I first read this.

Knowing what I wanted or needed... My counselor must've asked me that question a thousand times. I still don't know. She asked what my dreams and goals were as a kid. If I had any, I've never been able to remember them. Trying to think back before I was 13, I remember so much, but if I ever had a dream, I have no idea what it was. It's kind of annoying.

I think my brain just short-circuited, but so much of this rings true for me also. My abusers weren't even family members, yet it seems to matter little, at least in the damage done. I've often thought it would've been so much worse if I hadn't at least had a safe home, but...I don't know.

Patricia Singleton said...

Anonymous, thank you for your comment. I do believe that having your abuser as a family member does make the abuse worse because of what you mentioned - safety.

With my dad being my primary abuser of incest, home was not a safe place. My safe place was school. I hated summers. School and escaping into books gave me safety. Thank God I wasn't bullied at school like many kids today have to fear. Teachers were my role modals that I got approval from. I was a good student. I wasn't constantly criticized like I was at home.

I am sorry that you were abused as a child. It is a hard road to healing and we are worth the effort and time that it takes to heal. I hope my stories give that hope to other survivors.

I didn't know what my needs or wants were because as a child, I wasn't allowed to be an individual. Everything that my dad could control, he did. I never learned how to make decisions, manage money or to have an opinion until I left home. I struggled with needs and wants for years. I had to learn the difference between agressive and assertive because my dad modaled agressive and my mom modaled passive-agressive, neither of which is healthy.

Don't give up. You will get there. You are valuable and worth growing and healing. You deserve to have peace and joy in your life. I know you can do it because I have.

Vigabo said...

Wonderful post Pat and you are so right! Who you are today is not who you were before you learned to love yourself enough to become the real you. But simultaneously, you have been shaped, affected, molded by the incest and thankfully, risen above it all to become the leader and survivor you are now. Bravo!


Patricia Singleton said...

Viga, thank you for your comment. It definitely adds to what I already said. I appreciate your support and our new friendship.

Maureen Sullivan said...

I also agree that loving yourself can change your life. This one acceptance can drastically change your spiritual path, leading you to a completely different life.

Patricia Singleton said...

Maureen, thank you. Learning to love myself was the beginning of healing from incest and also as you said the beginning of my actively walking along my spiritual path. Welcome to Spiritual Journey Of A Lightworker.

Colleen said...

I am proud to know you, too. And you have grown so much!

Patricia Singleton said...

Colleen, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Hi I am the victim/survivor of incest from my father and from his father also sometimes together and it started at 4 and finished when I was 16 I didnt tell anyone until a year ago im 43 now and it affected my marriage and am now divorced with 1 son of 16 who is the first person to love me uncondtionally I am now seeing a counsellor and have started on the road to recovery, The first thing I learned was that it wasnt my fault and for the first time in my life I actually feel safe. I pray that it gets easier, thanks for your encouragements with your tweets.

Patricia Singleton said...

Anonymous, you are very welcome for the encouragement from my Tweets. You and other survivors are why I do spend so much time on Twitter. I have been where you are in the pain and grief of early healing. I know that you can grow and heal to the point of having joy and peace in your life. I am glad that you feel safe where you are right now. That is a good place to start your growth.

Welcome to my blog and feel free to come back and leave a comment any time. I thank you for your comment.

Unknown said...

I am still working on distinguishing who I am truly am from what the abusers have identified me to be. I can testify to what it's like living in a way that was conditioned by others and not fully knowing how to get the burden off.
With each new discovery of the real me, I learn to love myself each and everyday and this is healing. This is the real me.

Much love Sis

Patricia Singleton said...

Keisha Allen-Smith, When I first started healing from incest, I had to acknowledge that I had no idea who I was or what I wanted for my life. I knew what I didn't want but not what I wanted or what was good for me. I didn't know at that point that I deserved better than to be treated the way I was as a child and young adult. Learning to love myself gave me the freedom to search out who I was. Today I love who I am and the change in my life is good. I am honored to be called Sis. Thank you and much love to you too.