Monday, November 9, 2015

Foster CAT Foster KID: GOD Says You Don't Have to Eat Dirt Anymore! Book Review

In the introduction to her book, Foster CAT Foster KID: GOD Says You Don't Have to Eat Dirt Anymore!, Katherine Jones tells you that she is writing for four audiences: Animal Loving Readers, Foster Care Community Readers, Abuse Survivor Readers and People of Faith Readers. Katherine does a great job of addressing all of those topics in her book. I fit into all of those groups. Katherine's love of animals and her belief in God helped her though her childhood struggles with incest and her mom's mental illness. Like many abused and neglected children, Katherine took on an adult role early in her childhood, protecting her younger sister and her mother from what she could. Katherine shares her experiences in and out of foster care and living with a mother who was mentally ill.

The Foster CAT in Katherine's book was named Good Boy by her husband when he found him living in an abandoned lumber yard next to where he worked. The adoption of Good Boy into their family created an opportunity of healing for Good Boy and for Katherine that makes the reading of Katherine's book so inspiring. I would recommend this book to all of my friends. Katherine is a survivor of incest and of the foster care system that is today failing so many of our children. She is an advocate for animals, for abused children, and for those who are in the foster care community. Thank you Katherine for sharing your healing journey.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Self-awareness And Healing Controlling Behaviors

Page 216, The Invisible Force: 365 Ways to Apply the Power of Intention to Your Life, written by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer:

"Be aware that learning to identify ways in which you're creating your own obstacles can be tremendously enlightening."

I have been blessed to use books like this one at different stages in my healing to give me more self-awareness. Only though self-awareness does healing have a chance of happening.

I used the 12-Step programs of Adult Children of Alcoholics and Al-Anon to give me self-awareness too. Those meetings taught me about self-worth, dysfunctional behaviors and the dysfunctional family system that resists all change. 

Those meetings introduced me to the books Codependent No More and Beyond Codependency both written by Pia Melody. I learned about abandonment and my own controlling behavior. I was able to identify a behavior that was causing me major unhappiness in my life---controlling.

Trying to control everything and everyone in my life in order to feel safe only created more obstacles for me to overcome during my healing process. The stress that I was creating for myself with my own behavior was unbelievable. The perfectionism and responsibilities that I put on myself were too much, but I didn't know how to live without them. In the dysfunctional family system of my childhood, I was the family hero and taught that I had to be perfect or I wasn't good enough and I was always at fault. I was also given the responsibility to make everyone else happy, often at my own expense. All of those set me up to become a controller as an adult. Add on that I thought if I could control everything that I would be safe from abuse.

The 12-Step slogan "Let Go And Let God" helped me tremendously. I made lots of mistakes and lots of apologies as I changed my controlling behaviors. I used affirmations like the one above to help me see and change my behavior. I did lots of writing and talking to friends and in 12-Step groups as I figured things out and got new self-awareness. I looked at the lies of my abusers and at the lies that I told myself. While learning to love myself, I looked at what was my responsibility and what was not. I read every book I could find about incest, alcoholic family systems and codependency. 

For 3 years, I used a God Box to teach me the principle of "Let Go And Let God". If you don't like the idea of God, use the Universe or your own Higher Self. Call the box whatever you want or don't call it anything. Do what is necessary to let go of the stuff that is not yours to handle. I will leave a link at the bottom of the page explaining how the idea of a God Box works.

You don't need the stress of trying to control the world. The world is much too big for one little person to manage. You are doing yourself and those around you a disservice by trying. Healing doesn't have time to happen when you are too busy trying to control everything else. 

All controlling does is take you away from what you are feeling and is a distraction from what is going on inside of you. Controlling behaviors keep you focused on others, not on yourself. Healing needs you to focus on you, not on your abuser's current behavior, not on what your spouse might be doing today, not on your friend that goes from drama to drama. They will all survive without your help/interference. Without your attention/advice, they might even start to look at their own lives with a sense of self-awareness. Become an example of what healing looks like by focusing on and healing your own stuff. 

Let go of the fears of childhood that keep you trying to control everything. Look at those fears, one at a time. Become friends with your fear. See fear for what it is---mostly unrealistic and from your past. Help your inner child to see that you don't have to live in that fear today and she/he doesn't either. 

Know that you can't control another person, unless they let you and that isn't healthy for you or for them. You aren't meant to control others. You can offer better guidance by the example of how you live your own life. Others never have to follow your example or your words. Don't resent them when they don't. Giving advice sets you up for resentment when people don't do what you tell them to. You need to acknowledge to yourself that you really don't know what is better for another person. That person may need those experiences to grow, to see their own value, to learn a major lesson, or to learn what love really is. They may miss those lessons if you step in and try to fix everything for them.

Years ago, a very wise lady told me that when I try to fix things for others, I am, in effect, telling them they are too stupid to do it for themselves. I didn't like what she said. I never wanted anyone to feel stupid because of my words or actions. My parents did that to me as a child. I did it to others, until I learned not to.

Look at where your controlling behavior comes from and the fears that cause it. Then you can free yourself of those fears. You can stop controlling what isn't yours to control. You can't control other people no matter how much you may want to.

What can you control?
Your fears
Your words
Your thoughts
Your attitude
Your reactions

Look at your world through the eyes of gratitude instead of negativity. Use affirmations. Learn to meditate and find peace within your center. Learn to love yourself. Forgive yourself for the mistakes of the past and for the mistakes you will make as you learn to let go of controlling.

Changing any behavior takes time, persistence, focus and self-awareness. Give yourself all of those. Practice kindness and patience with yourself. You deserve both.

What changes are you afraid of? Why? What would happen if you make those changes? I assure you, you won't die. Keep telling your inner child that she/he is safe. Today you can keep her/him safe. You are strong, courageous, and wise when you listen to your own inner voice. Learn to love yourself. Loving yourself creates true safety.
I am Patricia.

Related articles:

ASCA Anonymous @

The Secret---Affirmations Change Your Life @

Al-Anon and Adult Children of Alcoholics Played Major Roles In My Recovery From Incest @

Surrender---Using A God Box @

Dialogues With Dignity And 22 Ways To Love Yourself @

Fear Is My Fear @

Resources For An Incest Survivor And Adult Children Of Dysfunctional Families @

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Believing You Are Worthy

This morning I was reading another Wayne Dyer book called The Invisible Force: 365 Ways to Apply the Power of Intention to Your Life. It is a daily meditation book that I read several pages each of the past few days. On page 198, it says:

"If you don't believe that you're worthy of fulfilling your intention for health, wealth, or loving relationships, then you're creating an obstacle that will inhibit the flow of creative energy into your daily life."

I do know, that as an incest survivor and a survivor of emotional domestic violence in my childhood home, I am blessed that I married a good man instead of another abuser. My non-existent self-worth could have attracted someone into my life that would have treated me in the way that I thought I deserved. It happens frequently to incest and domestic abuse survivors. Often we recreate our childhood environment until we figure out that we don't have to do that any more, that we do deserve better. 

One way to not attract abusers is to learn and establish healthy boundaries. An article that I read this last week written by my friend Dan Hays at HEALTHY PLACE, America's Mental Health Channel talks about setting up healthy boundaries. Here is the link to Dan's article:

Boundaries are such an important part of healing. Dysfunctional families don't want boundaries, especially the abusers. When I was a child, I used walls to hide behind and to feel safe. The wall let no one in but it also kept me a prisoner inside. Boundaries are flexible. Walls are not. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Reading Dr. Wayne W. Dyer's Memoir I Can See Clearly Now

page 365, I Can See Clearly Now, written by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer:

"Ask yourself how to fulfill your soul purpose by serving others first."

I have always known I would one day write a book about surviving and healing from incest. To me, writing is a way to tell my story and to reach out to other survivors of incest. I can help other survivors by letting them know they are not alone and that healing is possible. That is my purpose for this lifetime.

I have been reading Dr. Dyer's memoir as an assignment from Paula Balzer's book writing & selling your memoir. Ms Balzer has her students read other memoirs as a way to find their own writing style. I chose Dr. Dyer's memoir because he has been one of my spiritual teachers for a few years now and because of his recent death.  I was curious to know more about the life of one of my teachers. I have read a number of his books and seen several of his PBS specials on TV. 

Dr. Wayne Dyer was the first person that taught me to look at life's challenges as lessons to be learned. Looking at how my life has been affected by the incest and noticing my reactions has helped me figure out my patterns of behavior that I need to change. I can't change the past, but I definitely can change how I react. I can become aware of triggers and find what fears they bring up. I can, with awareness, eventually stop the triggers by working through the fears, one by one, and letting go of them. I can see the fear as coming from my inner child. I can protect her today. I can love her today.

I can see more clearly today that my abusers no longer have control over my life or who I am today. I don't have to focus on the pain of my childhood. I can look for joy in my life today and I can share that joy with others. I don't have to sit in the grief and sadness that used to rule my life, from my early childhood. 

I can find the blessings and small miracles in my day. I am here. I am alive and well. So many are not. I can look at the darkness and evil of the incest and its pain and I can see the miracle of who I have become. I can see the character and strength that the pain gave me. I can see the lessons that I have learned and I can freely share those lessons with others to lessen their pain too. 

I can see the love and light that are in my world today and I can share that with family, friends and other survivors around the world. Those are all good reasons to write my book.

Dr. Dyer tells me to, "Stay in touch with and honor the calling you feel deep within you." (page 366) My calling is to write this book and to use my words to help others. 

On page 366, Dr. Dyer says:  

"As you begin to see more and more clearly not only how and why your life took all of its twists and turns but what direction it is going to take from here on in, you will see that your soul will not ever lead you astray. This is because this is truly who you are---not your accomplishments or possessions, but that inner sense of purpose that seeks out immensity and expansion."

I am a writer. I am a willing participant in my own life. Writing my book is the next stage of breaking the silence of abuse. I am fully capable of taking this step to the end. I am a published author. I am Patricia.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Rage Is Anger On Overload

As another tribute to Dr. Wayne Dyer, Hay House is offering a free link to "My Greatest Teacher" movie until September 15, 2015 at the following link:

I cried through watching this movie. I have called my own dad my greatest teacher because of the lessons I learned from the incest.

What first hit me from the movie was the rage of the main character. I have felt that rage myself before and during my healing journey. Like the main character, I often directed my rage at my spouse and my children before I learned to control my rage.

What is the difference between anger and rage? A matter of depth - rage is anger on overload. Anger doesn't have to hurt anyone. Rage often does. Anger can be controlled and used constructively to make much needed changes. Rage often feels out of control. Anger can be expressed and let go of before anyone is hurt by it. Rage is often stuffed inside until pressure builds and an explosion occurs. Rage looks for a victim to pour out all over. 

I cried because my rage often hurt those I loved. I had to change the way that I dealt with my anger so that it didn't grow into rage.

When you are angry with rage inside, the Universe seems to give you reasons to be more angry, like the character in the movie. Everything is an irritant. What can go wrong will, so the rage can come out. 

My dad taught me how to do rage. So did my mom, just in a different way. My dad was a rageaholic. My mom did hers with passive-aggressive behavior. 

In order to heal my own rage, I had to stop blaming my abusers and had to switch to looking at what I was feeling and how could I diffuse my rage in a healthy way. Instead of everything being out there and someone else's fault, I had to bring my focus to inside my mind, my body, my feelings, my heart. 

What issues were causing my rage? How could I heal my own hurt? How could I let out the rage so it didn't hurt me or those I loved? 

My most prized healing tool has always been my writing. I could pull the rage and the hurt out and on to the written page so I could see it. I still had to feel it. Feelings are part of the healing. The written word always helps me see the patterns and figure out what I need to change about myself. I can forgive myself and I can ask forgiveness of those that I have hurt. 

These are my thoughts after watching the movie "My Greatest Teacher." I hope that you take the time to watch it for yourself. 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Pain Caused By Regrets And Self-Doubts - Judging Ourselves

Please go and read the article "Memories and Regrets" from Beyond Survivor - The Wounded Warrior Blog written by my friend Jan L. Frayne at the following link:

Come back here afterwards to read my thoughts about this post.

The Wounded Warrior expresses the pain and self-doubts that many survivors carry inside, hidden from the world most of the time. Voicing the pain of surviving through writing whether it is a blog like Beyond Survivor - The Wounded Warrior Blog or like here at Spiritual Journey Of A Lightworker is important because giving voice to our pain frees other survivors to do the same.

Some survivors, like me, were alone with the abuser. Other survivors saw other children nearby also being abused. 

For years, I hoped and prayed that I was the only one that my dad was sexually abusing. Years later when I found out that he was abusing my sister by fondling and making sexual comments to, I was angry and felt guilty that I didn't protect her from him. I was the older sister. I loved my sister and I wanted her to be safe. She wasn't.

I can understand why Jan Frayne took on the blame for the abuse of the little boy that he saw being strangled. I, too, have said to myself, what if I had told?  Maybe my sister would have been saved from her experiences.

Looking back makes taking on the blame so easy for a survivor. We are looking back from a position of power as an adult. We didn't have that hindsight as a child.

As children, we didn't have any power. We couldn't protect ourselves or another child. No child should go through the abuse that we did. Yes, we were victims.

 I didn't have the courage to speak up as a child or even as a young adult. I wasn't able to overcome all of my fears in order to speak up. I could blame myself for my sister being abused or I can put the blame where it belongs, with my abusers. 

If we cannot prevent our own abuse from happening, how can we possibly save another child? We are not responsible for what our abusers did. That is just another form of victim blaming, even if it is ourselves we are blaming. Others do it to us often enough without us buying into it too. Stop victim blaming. 

Shift from feeling like a victim to offering love and comfort to your inner child. Feel what you feel and then let it go. You don't have to stay stuck in victim mode. Give your inner child more reasons to trust you. "Beyond" survivor doesn't mean you will never have to revisit being a survivor or a victim. Healing means going back and forth between the three as needed to heal. 

Memories come up because you are strong enough to face them. Dreams are all of the stuff that you are afraid to face in the waking world. Healing can take place in your dreams too. Keeping a dream journal can help you to figure out what your dreams are telling you. Memories and dreams are both part of healing.

Forgive yourself for what you couldn't control. Stop blaming yourself. Blaming yourself keeps you stuck in the hurt. You deserve better. 

Jan, be gentle with yourself as I have seen you be with other survivors. Beyond surviving - thriving - comes slowly but it does come. Keep putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward. Allow your friends to support you when you need us. You don't have to be strong alone. 

I copied a statement from one of my favorite teachers today that I want to share with you here.

"With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself, or treat what has happened as a gift. Everything is either an opportunity to grow, or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose."
                                         -Dr. Wayne Dyer

Saturday, September 5, 2015

A Tribute To One Of My Teachers - Dr. Wayne Dyer

I have never met Dr. Wayne Dyer in person. He has been my teacher though his books, TV programs and educational videos where he has spoken by himself or with other spiritual teachers. 

Dr. Dyer passed away in his sleep sometime in the early morning hours on August 30, 2015. He is known to many as the "father of motivation" (About the author, Hay House email I received recently). I, for one, have been motivated through the years to make many changes in my belief system and in my daily life. 

In honor of his passing and his work, Hay House is making the video "The Shift" available to watch for free until September 8, 2015. I just finished watching "The Shift". It was well worth the two hours of sitting. I hope you will find the time to also watch it. Here is the link where I found it.

Here are a few little tidbits that I found interesting from watching the video.
1.  Enthusiasm comes from two words meaning "the God within."
2.  Stop interfering in your own life.
3.  You don't attract what you want. You attract what you are.
4.  Let go of ego/self and be of service to others.
5.  How can you ignore what is in front of you? Because you are 
     too busy doing other things.
6.  Sometimes you just have to show up for life.
7.  Everything will happen perfectly.
8.  Your purpose is always found in service.
9.  Leave the planet better than you found it.

Last Sunday morning I shared a guest blog article that I wrote back in February 2008. Over the years since then I have thought about sharing the article here on my blog but that didn't happen until last Sunday, the very day that Dr. Dyer left his body behind. You will find the link to that article at the end of this post.

In the comment section of that blog article entitled "Five Ways To Leave Pain Behind", a friend and I talked about the coincidence of me posting that article on the very day that Dr. Dyer died. Dr. Dyer is the one who taught me that there is no such thing as coincidences in the Universe. God/the Universe orchestrates things to happen when they are supposed to. There is no guesswork.   There is no luck or coincidence that caused something to happen. My belief is that those things were meant to happen whether I know the reason or not. I believe there is a higher intelligence in the Universe. 

If you believe something different, I am okay with that too. My beliefs are my own and your beliefs are yours. We are each of us at different steps along the path of life. 

Dr. Wayne Dyer helped me to open my mind to new ways of thinking and seeing life and most importantly myself. He helped me to learn my own value as a human being and as a member of the ever-expanding Universe. I will always be grateful to him for that introduction into things greater than myself/my ego. Thank you Dr. Dyer for the things that you are still teaching me. I hope to be as wise as you one day.

Related Posts:

Five Ways To Leave Pain Behind @

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Flap Copy---The Case Of The Three-Year-Old-Adulteress Book

As I begin to write my memoir, The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress, I am reading a book called writing & selling your memoir written by Paula Balzer. One of her first assignments is to write what she calls the flap copy which is a short description of what your book is about. Its purpose is to catch the attention of the reader so that they will buy the book. The flap copy is also important in marketing your book. Here is what I wrote. Know that this first copy may change or be deleted completely before the book is finished.

Why would any three-year-old call herself an adulteress? Memories are of incest and dysfunction. The effects of incest on a small child and an adult are many. Healing is possible. You are not alone. Breaking the silence of abuse is freeing. 

One out of three girls and one out of six boys are sexually abused before the age of 18. Most know their abusers. Incest happens more frequently than rape from a stranger. 

What can you do to change those numbers? What are the signs of child sexual abuse? What can you do if you see the signs of abuse in a child that you know? How does a molester groom the parents and get the child to keep their secrets? These are some of the answers you will find in the book The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress.

Let me know if the flap copy caught your interest in the memoir that I am writing.  Thank you for staying with me during this process. 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Five Ways To Leave Pain Behind

"In my world, nothing ever goes wrong." Wayne Dyer, author of Your Sacred Self, introduced me to this expression by Nisargadatta Maharaj. Your Sacred Self is my favorite of the Wayne Dyer series of books.

This book made such a tremendous impact on my spiritual journey that I have given it as gifts to several of my friends. Do you have any sayings such as this or any books that you have read that have impacted your life as this one has mine?

You will find these words, "In my world, nothing goes wrong." scattered throughout my house and written on poster paper and index cards. The use of this expression can enable you to look at the challenges in your life as lessons that you need to learn, rather than as things going wrong.

You will find a simple shift of your attitude can make big changes in how you see people and situations. A major shift happened for me when I started looking at the sexual abuse committed against me in this way.

Rather than continue to blame others which only keeps you struck in the pain of the abuse, if you look at the whole incident as a series of lessons, you will be able to release the pain and leave it in the past with the abuse. You may ask, "What lessons can be learned from being sexually abused as a child?"

Here are a few of the things that you might learn:

1.  You can become a survivor rather than a victim---just a small          shift in perception that makes a big difference in how you see 
     yourself. You can go from feeling helpless as a victim to being 
     a powerful voice against abuse. You can begin to see the value 
     that you have as a human being.

2.  You are courageous rather than being fearful of all people---
      again just a small shift that can allow you to trust and love 
      again. Trust can be a really big issue for a survivor of any
      kind of abuse. I had to learn to trust women. I was afraid of
      being judged harshly by women because the major women in
      my childhood were judgmental. When I was seven years old,
      my aunt told me that I was going to Hell because I was wearing
      shorts. I have been blessed that certain women came into my
      life as an adult and taught me that is was okay to trust. I now
      know that no child is going to Hell just because of what they 
      are wearing.

3.  You may find that you have developed strengths of character
      that you might not would have possessed without going
      through the abuse and the process of healing the abuse. You
      don't learn courage if you have never been afraid. You don't 
      know compassion unless you have been hurt. You don't know 
      strength unless you have been tested. You don't know victory
      unless you have faced adversity. You can't love until you have
      learned to love yourself.

4.  You may find, as I did, that you have faith in God and in 
      yourself that grows stronger each day because you stopped
      blaming God and yourself for the abuse. For years, I was angry 
      at God and hated myself. I didn't share who I really was with
      anyone because I was afraid that you would see how bad, how
      tainted I was. None of that is true today. You might find, as I
      did, that you can love yourself and that your love connects you 
      with and comes from the God within you. God, then, is no 
      longer some entity outside of you. We are one.

5.  I choose to see the sexual abuse as a blessing instead of a curse.
     This is a huge shift for me that would not have happened 
     without the first four smaller shifts of perception. You can, in
     the same way, turn your smaller shifts of perception into a huge
     shift that will affect your entire being.

All of these and so many more shifts can happen for you if you decide to apply these same words, "In my world, nothing ever goes wrong." to your own life. 

Lessons are good. They teach you about yourself. How you react to the challenges in your life gives you valuable lessons about yourself if you will take the time to look. 

Today I love my world (even on the days that I feel sad or angry) and I love me. You might ask, "How can you love your world on the days that you feel sad or angry?"

On those days, I know that I am present just because I do feel those things. You don't have to get struck in the feelings. You can look to see what it is that you need to see or hear or learn to make a difference in your life. This process will work for you if you are willing to face yourself.

This article was originally a guest post on the blog "The Next 45 Years". That blog which belonged to Alex Blackwell has since been closed. I wrote the post on February 29, 2008. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Happy 43rd Anniversary Daniel

Happy 43rd Anniversary, Daniel. We made it through another year today with our usual ups and downs. Through it all, my commitment to our marriage has continued to grow. Looking back at our love shows growth year after year. Our marriage hasn't been perfect. I don't know of any that are. We have had our years of struggle and our times of laughter and joy. 

I found an article in my emails this last week that I want to share with you from MindBodyGreen entitled "38 Hard Truths About Relationships". The article is one that I totally agree with. Relationships and love are not easy. My marriage has taught me that. Sherryl Paul, the author of this article, talks about how relationships are not easy and that that require compromise. She says that the definition of love that our society gives you need to be redefined. I agree with her when she says that love is an action rather than a feeling. You aren't going to be happy all the time in any relationship. That is why I said earlier than Daniel and I have had our ups and downs. Our marriage has been full of compromises and change. 

Daniel and I both came from dysfunctional homes and therefore, our family was also dysfunctional. Today we are both healthier than we have ever been in our relationship and still neither of us or our relationship is perfect. Marriage and love takes commitment on the part of both partners. The initial feelings of falling in love are the best that I have ever felt but those feelings didn't last. The daily irritants of living with another person quickly wears away those initial feelings. You often find the things that attracted you to your partner are the very things that irritate you later. I love Daniel's quirky sense of humor unless I am tired and not feeling good. Then I have to look at what is really important. I don't want him to change his wonderful sense of humor just because I am having a bad day. You cannot expect another person to change just because you want them to. It doesn't happen. A person only changes if they want to. One thing marriage taught me is that the only person I can change is me. 

Ms Paul says love is an action and I agree with her. For me that action has been the decision to stay committed to my marriage and my love for Daniel over the years. Many people choose to walk away at the first sign of problems because they want the happy ever after of fairy tales. Happy ever after is a fairy tale. Happy doesn't come from another person. Another person cannot make you happy. Only you can make you happy. Happy is a choice. You can be happy or at least content in the worst of circumstances. If you aren't happy make changes. If you can't change your circumstances, find something good in each day to be thankful for. Change your attitude. I discovered some time ago that I can always change my attitude and change how I see my world around me.

I am not sure when Daniel and I will get around to celebrating our anniversary. Both of us have been sick the past few days. For me, I am not sure if I have caught his cold or if I am having an allergic reaction to a medicine that I was taking for a bladder infection. I do feel better today. So does Daniel. That is another thing about any good relationship is that you both need to be flexible with boundaries, thoughts and requirements. 

Here is the link to the article that I mentioned earlier from MindBodyGreen.

38 Hard Truths About Relationships @

Happy 43rd Anniversary Daniel. I love you more than I did last year. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Forgiveness Can Be So Complicated For Incest Survivors

Forgiveness can be so complicated for incest survivors. Some ask how do you forgive someone who hurt you so bad when they were the ones who should have been protecting you from harm? How can you forgive the sense of betrayal by the person who holds the biggest place in your heart when your abuser is your parent or a sibling? How can you forgive yourself when you grew up being told, by your abusers, that the incest was your fault. If you hadn't seduced them, they wouldn't have molested you. If you had been a good little girl or good little boy, you wouldn't have deserved to be sexually abused. How do you forgive yourself when you feel only hate for yourself? 

All of those are questions that I asked myself and every survivor that I know has also asked themselves those same questions. I have also heard survivors say, "Why should I forgive those monsters that took my innocence and destroyed my childhood? Why should I forgive such evil people?" I used to believe that forgiving my abusers meant that I was saying what they did to me was okay. That is never what forgiveness says. I know some survivors who say that they will never forgive their abusers. I can understand that stand even though I chose a different way. When you pressure a survivor to forgive before they are ready, you are adding more suffering to the abuse. Please don't do that. 

For myself, I have forgiven my abusers and myself. Even if you choose to not forgive your abusers, you should forgive yourself and your inner child. You were a child. You were not at fault or to blame for the abuse. Again, you were a child.  You may ask, "What do I need to forgive myself for?" I have written a whole article about that self-forgiveness that I will post at the end of this article. One thing to forgive yourself for is believing the lies of your abuser. You didn't know they were lying and giving your their shame. You didn't know it was theirs and not yours to carry. Forgive yourself for being a child who couldn't protect yourself. Your abusers had physical and emotional power over you because you were a child. Learning to love yourself and letting go of the self-hatred are a very important step to forgiving yourself. You were a child. If you could have done things differently, you would have. You were not in control of your life. Your abusers were.

Before I could forgive my abusers, I had to figure out what I felt and who I was. For years, I turned forgiveness over to God and asked Him to deal with it until I could. I didn't wake up one morning and decided to forgive. Forgiveness was a gradual process over years of healing. Only in looking back did I realize that forgiveness had happened. Forgiveness isn't a one time decision. Each time that a new layer of issues come up, I choose to forgive again. 

For me, the choice to not forgive just means I am still holding on to some anger that I need to feel and work through before I can let go. Once I can let go of the anger, which only happens after working through my feelings, then I can forgive again. Holding on to the anger doesn't have any effect on my abusers but it can hurt me by raising my blood pressure and creating illnesses in my body and mind. When that happens, my abusers win again. I am not into letting my abusers win. They had control when I was a child. As a survivor/thriver, I am the person in control of my life and the quality of my life. 

Related Posts:

Prelude To Forgiveness @

Forgiveness Is For You, Not The Other Person @

What Does Forgiveness Mean To Me @

Forgiveness, Done In Layers @

Forgiveness, Lies And Trust @

Journey To Your Heart - Learning To Love Yourself After Abuse @

Healing Is About Love And Compassion @

You Deserve Your Own Love Guest Post @

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Incest Survivors Ready To Heal

Today is Day #14 and the last day of the Start Your Book Challenge on ChallengeBug. Our challenge leader was Christine Kloser who calls herself "The Transformation Catalyst." Her website is . 

My blog post "Transformation Through Writing" came from Day #1's challenge. I will add the link to it at the end of this post in case you haven't read it already. I have enjoyed and learned from this 14 day challenge. I am still working on some of the challenges that I didn't want to rush through. I enjoy the researching as much as the writing part of some of the challenges. 

On Day #2, I was asked, Who is your ideal reader? Here is my answer.

The ideal reader for The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress is an incest survivor who is beginning to acknowledge that she/he is a survivor. This survivor wants to finally let go of the denial that they thought would protect them from the pain of awareness and memories. She/He wants to heal but may not know where to start. Fears and maybe memories are starting to surface because she/he has cracked open that door in her/his mind. Once that door is open, she/he can't close it and pretend the door was never open. She/he stays stuck in the fear and the pain or she/he moves forward. My ideal reader is ready to move forward.

For ease of writing and because more girls are abused than boys, I am going to use "she" and "her" from here on out in my article. I am not excluding boys/men. One out of three girls are sexually abused and one out of six boys are sexually abused before the age of 18. I am grateful that boys/men are finally joining the ranks of female survivors in speaking out and breaking the silence of incest/childhood sexual abuse. I know, personally, the challenges and fears they face to find and use their voices. 

My ideal reader has acknowledged that she is an incest survivor, at least in her own mind. She may or may not have told anyone else yet. She probably doesn't have any idea what step to take next. Fear, rage and hurt are battling for the top position in her mind. The survivor is feeling overwhelmed, if she even knows what she is feeling. Many times feelings aren't allowed. Feelings are denied, stuffed or hidden by addictions. She may be afraid of change and some part of her is resisting those first steps. Resistance has to be faced and overcome before healing happens. Sometimes, the survivor has to hurt enough before she is willing to move forward. My ideal reader is ready to move forward.

Once feelings start, grief isn't far behind. All survivors of incest have to grieve the loss of innocence and the loss of the childhood they didn't have. Most survivors have no idea what normal is. They have never seen healthy in their dysfunctional families. Incest is only allowed to happen in an atmosphere of dysfunction. Every family member plays their part in keeping the secrets of the dysfunctional family. 

The incest survivor is usually full of rage at her abusers but probably taking that rage out on herself and those closest to her. Depression becomes a constant companion. I have seen depression defined as anger turned inward. That definition feels right to me. Often what doctors call depression may be the deep, deep sadness of grief. Survivors have so many losses to work through and let go of. I don't believe just taking a pill solves those feelings of loss. As a survivor, she has to feel her way to healing.

What is my ideal reader seeking?

Release from the overwhelming sadness, fear and rage that is inside of her is one answer. She wants the hurt to stop. Feeling and growing are the only ways that I know of to do that healing. My book The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress will take her through my own journey of healing from incest.

What transformations do I want for my ideal reader? 

I want my ideal reader to be able to experience freedom from pain, rage and sadness. I want her to be able to work her way through all of those feelings and then release them. Joy and peace are attainable goals. Learning to love herself is an important part of the healing journey. Letting go of addictions and codependency are necessary to healing. In reading my story, she will be given healing tools to use in her own journey. She will learn to express feelings in healthy ways. She will recognize the lies of her abusers and see how they may still be affecting her life today as an adult. She will find her sense of self-worth and not rely on others to get her self-worth from. She will love herself first so that she has more to give to others. She will learn that some people don't belong in her life. Some people don't want her to change or to move on. Those people will either change themselves or they will move on. 

My ideal reader is someone who is tired of hurting and ready to heal no matter how much it hurts to begin with. She is ready to step into survivor mode, ready to move forward with courage, hope and commitment. As a survivor, she is ready to strip away all denial and ready to be extremely honest with herself. She is open to change and willing to look at the source of resistance that she may feel. 

Trust is something that she will have to learn---trust of herself first and then trust of others. Not everyone deserves her trust. She must learn to trust herself and that inner voice that guides her when she is willing to listen. Part of trusting herself means learning how to shut up that mean, critical inner voice that came from her abusers. I will teach her how to use affirmations to turn that inner voice to positive and away from being negative all of the time. 

Making friends with her inner child is a very important step in healing. The inner child is the one who carries and remembers all of her pain. The inner child is the one who is so full of fear and is afraid of moving forward. All the inner child knows is the pain and fear of incest and the words of her abusers. She has to gain the trust of her inner child. Together they will grow and learn to love each other. The inner child isn't the enemy. The abusers are.

Strength and courage are both needed to take one healing step after another. The rewards of being a survivor are worth going through all of the challenges she will face along the way to healing. Healing isn't an instant cure. 

I am not a doctor or a therapist. I, too, am a survivor of incest. Today I am a thriver and I know that my readers can all accomplish what I have. I encourage you all to take that first healing step and share your story with some caring person that you trust. 

Related Posts:

Transformation Through Writing @ 

Stages Of Loss And Grief For Incest Survivors @

Journey To Your Heart - Learning To Love Yourself After Abuse @

Denial, FEAR's Companion And BFF @

Inner Child Work And Feeling Safe @

The Secret---Affirmations Change Your Life @

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Transformation Through Writing

What transformation do you want for yourself from writing your book? This is a question from a writer's challenge class that I am taking this week. I thought I would share with you why I am writing my book The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress.

I want to write my book to help others but also for my own healing and understanding of my journey through this life. I want the final transformation from survivor to thriver to happen because of my writing of The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress. I want others to see that healing from incest and dysfunction is possible. I know that if I can do it, then others can too. I am not the only one. I also want all survivors to know that they are not alone with their pain and their rage. The pain and the rage can be felt and healed. You won't die from the pain. You won't kill someone else, as my inner child always was afraid of, if you let out the rage. You are more likely to die from stuffing the feelings and denying them because of health issues like high blood pressure and heart disease. Feeling hurts but the act of feeling also frees you.

Transformation is change and change is healthy. Healing releases all of the hurt and makes room for love and joy. I want writing my  book to be cathartic in that I can release all negativity from my mind and my body.

Writing this book will be my victory over my abusers. They will no longer rule my life. My abusers won't control me any more. This book is breaking my silence in a major life-changing way. I win. My abusers lose.

My book will be a way to face any fears that my inner child may still carry inside. Together we will confront their lies. The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress will be the ultimate act of self-love for me. This book says, "This is who I am. I am proud of me. I love and respect myself."

This is my story and I am so much more than a story of incest. I am no longer a victim of incest. I am a survivor turned thriver. I will write the ending to my story in any way that I choose. I am in control of my words, thoughts and deeds. I will listen to my inner voice and know that I can trust it because it is me, my inner wisdom, my inner Divinity. It is that spark of Spirit that has always kept me alive and moving forward, one step at a time.

The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress is my story and in sharing my story, I hope to inspire others to have the courage to share their stories and to break their silence too. Together we are strong and can one day prevent other children from being molested. We will win. We will make the world a better place.

I have always known I would write my story. Telling my story is the one way that I know to take the evil that was done to me and make something good come from it. That is important to me more than anything else.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Silent No More---Resistance To Speaking Out

Writing my book The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress is a new step toward being silent no more. Each such step, for me, has been met by resistance, most of it internal but some of it from others.

The internal resistance can come from my inner child who is still afraid of rejection when I tell. Resistance can come from the fear of being blamed as a victim. Resistance can also come from fear of being misunderstood by others. Some question why I was silent for so long. The adult me doesn't fear any of those things but the inner child does. 

Outer resistance can come from others who want to remain in denial about incest and its long-time effects upon the survivor and her/his loved ones. I say loved ones because the incest affects those close to us. Our feelings, attitudes and reactions can affect our spouses, children and friends who live with us before and during the healing process.

Incest didn't just hurt me. My years of denial---of trying to pretend that I wasn't angry and hurting---and my years of struggling to feel again and to heal hurt my family and friends too. They had to deal with me when I was scared and when I was raging in pain in the years before I learned to control my rage and to face my fears. 

I have bumped into and faced resistance at every step of my healing journey. Feelings for an incest survivor can be extremely painful. No one wants to feel the pain. Resistance to feeling is there. 

Resistance is part of speaking out and telling others about the incest. Resistance comes from fear of the unknown. What will happen the first time you tell someone. Will they believe you? Will they hate you for sharing your painful secret because their own painful secrets are in their face?  What will happen to your abuser when you speak out? Will speaking out destroy your family or make the members stronger? Resistance comes because you often don't know the answers and that is frightening all by itself.

Telling one or two people is different than telling a group of 12-Steppers in meetings filled with 10-30 people in the room. I met resistance when my friend Slade Roberson suggested that I write a blog about being an incest survivor. I have been meeting and talking to survivors through my writing my blog for 8 years now. My 8th year Anniversary for Spiritual Journey Of A Lightworker was on June 1, 2015.  During that about 4 or 5 of those years, I have used Facebook and Twitter to meet other survivors. Men survivors came into the picture and started breaking their own silences. 

Society seems to sometimes want to stay in denial of how many of us are being affected on a daily basis by incest and sexual assault. Rarely are children sexually assaulted by strangers as society wants us to believe. Most sexual assault is in the form of incest from a family member or friend who has authority over the child. Even judges and the courts resist believing the damage that can be done to a child by an abuser that the child knows and sometimes loves. This is society resisting change. Often our justice system is sadly lacking when it comes to helping a child to heal and receive some justice against the abusers. Cover-ups are resistance to seeing the truth. 

Writing my book is another instance of me facing my own resistance. My book is a further step in going public with my story of abuse and healing. What are you resisting in your life today? 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Case Of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress As Book Title

The tentative title for my book is The Case of The Three-Year-Old Adulteress. That could change as I actually write the book but that is my thought for right now.

Over the weekend, I printed out the blog posts from 2007 and 2008 that might be included in my book. Those two years of posts have been divided into possible chapters.

Possible chapters are:  Introduction, Incest Story, Feelings, Change---Acceptance, Loving Myself, Inner Child, 12-Step Healing, Dad, Mom, Forgiveness, Protecting Our Children and finally Resources. Those chapter titles could change as the story progresses but this helps me to organize my thoughts for now. 

Over the next few days, I will be printing out the blog posts from 2009-2015 to be considered in telling my story of healing from incest. In 2008, I wrote over 80 articles, more than any other year that I have been blogging. 

Health issues and just living my life in general has affected how many blog articles I have written each year, with 2015 being the slowest year of all. My health seems to be better finally with not as many headaches since a doctor gave me antibiotics for a rash that I had on my feet several months ago. That makes me suspect that my headaches were allergy related with my sinuses being infected. With the antibiotics the headaches are almost gone. I have a history of sinus infections and that was the first thing that my doctor checked but she said that sinus x-rays are not reliable. Whatever the reason, the headaches are almost completely gone over the past month which is a relief after having them almost daily for about two years. I don't miss the pain at all. 

I hope you all are having a great week. We have had Heat Advisories almost every day for the past several weeks. I am staying inside out of the heat as much as possible. 

Related Posts:

The Case Of The Three-Year-Old Adultress

Three Year Old Adultress Revisited - Inner Child Letters Series - 1

Three Year Old Adultress Carries The Shame Of Incest - Inner Child Letters Series

Monday, July 27, 2015

Grooming Children And Parents For Sexual Abuse

Before the actual writing of my book starts, I have a lot of sorting and reading to do first, deciding upon possible chapters for the book is my beginning place. Dividing up what I have already written here on the blog into those chapters and rewriting some of the posts to better fit into the book are just some of the things that I need to do. 

In the meantime, ideas are flowing through my mind and to the page here. My creativity has been turned back on and I love it. I missed being creative, putting words to paper, or more accurately, to the computer screen in front of me. 

I found an article written by Gregory M. Weber online called "Grooming Children for Sexual Molestation" that I wanted to share here. Here is the link: 

Grooming is why knowing the adults in your children's lives is so important. Pay attention to what your intuition tells you about a person. The world is full of good people who mentor children and make a good difference in their lives but there are also abusers waiting to take advantage of your child. Sometimes it is hard to know the difference. Make sure that your children know that there are no secrets between you and them. Tell them that anyone who wants them to keep secrets from you are not good people. Let your children know that you will always believe them and that there is nothing that they can't tell you. You love your children. Make sure that they know that their welfare is always your first concern.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Healing The Writer: A Personal Account of Overcoming PTSD Book Review

Healing The Writer: A Personal Account of Overcoming PTSD is the second published book by my friend Dan L. Hays. It isn't the second book Dan has written. It is the second one that he published. Healing The Writer is Dan's story of why the first books weren't published and the healing that had to take place for Dan to be able to write again and become a published writer.  

Dan's is a story of healing from PTSD and facing fearful memories that his inner child blocked from adult Dan's memory for years. Through inner child exercises, over a period of time, Dan is able to get little Danny to tell his secrets and share his fears. 

What I like about Dan's books is that I always find something about Dan's healing journey that I can relate to. Sometimes it feels like Dan is telling part of my story in the feelings of being a survivor. Dan's writing always teaches me something about myself. 

I highly recommend Healing The Writer to any survivor of PTSD and anyone who has ever experienced writer's block. Dan shares some valuable exercises in working with your inner child too. 

If you are interested, here is the link to my book review of Dan's first published book, Freedom's Just Another Word.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Silent Anger---Triggers

I am reading Healing The Writer: A Personal Account of Overcoming PTSD, a book written by my friend Dan L. Hays. I will later write a book review when I finish reading the book. Today I want to write about an issue that came up for me and brought tears to my eyes. I have been questioning, as Dan has, why it has been hard for me to start writing my own book. As I was reading a page of Dan's book, what came to mind was my mother's face when she was angry and used silence to show it rather than voicing her anger.

I am usually quite vocal with my own anger. When I get silent, it is because I am thinking and figuring out what brought out my anger. I am also looking at what fear is behind my anger. Once I figure out what that fear is, I can voice it. For me, voicing my anger and fears is very important. If I can voice it, I can release it.

My mother's silent anger was never voiced and released. You knew when she was angry but if you asked her about it, you were wrong. She wasn't angry. It was all in your mind. Her anger never got voiced. You were made to look bad and nothing was ever resolved. 

My mother lived with my family and me when I started my healing from incest. When I started going to Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA) meetings, my mom never asked why I was going to 2-4 meetings a week. She didn't know about the incest because I hadn't told her. She was silently angry at me for daring to reveal our family's secret of alcoholism. 

I didn't know about domestic violence and its effects back then. My mother wasn't beaten by my dad. The only time he ever hit her was before I was born. She got his gun and pulled the trigger. He never hit her again. My mom was a good shot. He could have died. The gun wasn't loaded but neither of them realized it until after she pulled the trigger. 

I grew up I with that story. Death was the threat behind my mom's silent anger. Don't make me mad or I might shoot you. I lived with that subconscious fear from sometime in my childhood.  How much has that influenced my decisions?

My parents were divorced and my mom was living with us. I was probably into my third year of healing when I asked my ACOA sponsor to help me face my mom and tell her about the incest. When I told her, I think she was shocked but she was also angry. She didn't say anything until I asked her if her brother had ever sexually abused her. Her angry comment was, "No, Papa would have killed him if he had." Then she went into her angry silence and went to her room. 

Our talk was never brought up again. I gave her a copy of My Dear Family Member letter. I also mailed a copy to both of my siblings 2 weeks before mailing copies to each of my dad's siblings. If you are interested in what I said to my siblings and to my dad's siblings about the incest, you will find a link at the end of this post that will take you to the letter.

Anger turned to silence hurts and never gets resolved. You know the anger is there. The angry person wins and you lose if you bring it up. I learned to disconnect from my mom in order to not be hurt by her silent anger or did I? 

Is that silent anger still affecting my life? Did it keep me from writing my book all this time? Today, I know my mom's anger can't hurt me, unless I let it. I refuse to let her anger control my actions and thoughts today. 

It is time to write my book about healing from incest. I started writing just this week. My husband has been telling me for awhile that I already have my book written within the pages of my blog. I ignored his words. Recently, a friend, Corinne Edwards told me the same thing. Her words got through my doubts and questioning where to start. Over last weekend, I sat down and printed out all of my blog posts and then started a list of possible chapters for my book. 

This is your official notice to my husband Daniel Singleton, my friend Slade Roberson who encouraged me to write a blog and this book and to my friend Corinne Edwards whose words finally got through to me, I am writing my book. Thank you all three and so many others of my friends who have encouraged my writing. Thank you Dan L. Hays for writing your books and being my friend whose story is so like my journey of healing from being an adult child of an alcoholic.

Related Posts:

Dear Family Member - Notification About Incest Happening In Family

My Mom---The Silent Parent

Birthdays And Valentine's Day

Family Generational Patterns of Behavior

Friday, May 8, 2015

Grief And Letting Go, Feeling What Is

When I wrote my last post here in July 2014, I had no idea it would be so long before I sat down to write again. It has been a difficult year between then and now, May 2015. I have had health issues, nothing life threatening, just energy zapping and time consuming. Often I have thought of something to share with my readers but always got distracted before I could sit down and get the words written here. This was a year of researching health issues, having all kinds of testing done to discover the source of my headaches which still hasn't happened, reading about thyroid issues and educating my doctor.

We have taken more trips than usual to Louisiana and to Texas to visit with family---surgeries, nursing homes and grocery shopping. Family is important. We live 3 and 5 hours away so the trips are a big deal now. As we have gotten older, the trips are harder to make and take longer to recover from than when we were younger. It takes me a week to get over being tired from our trips.

Happy Mother's Day to all of the mothers out there who are reading this. I am blessed by our two children and their spouses and our 4 grandchildren.

On April 28, one of my best friends died after having two heart attacks the evening before. Her Memorial Service was on Saturday, May 2. The spouse of another dear friend died on April 29 and his funeral was on Monday, May 4. Just yesterday, I found out that a friend that I knew only on Facebook also died. I knew he was having some health issues. Some days I cry. Others I don't. Wednesday, May 6 was my best friend's 64th birthday. This Mother's Day will be without her presence. I grieve for myself and for her husband, children and grandchildren.

I hate grief and it is a natural part of life and of healing from childhood abuse. I hate grief and I am allowing it to ebb and flow through my days right now. I have coping tools that work for me today. I write. I talk to friends. I ask my husband to hold me while I cry. I let the tears flow when they come. I am strong at times and not so strong at others. The first few days after my friend died, I kept thinking of reasons to call her and talk, then I would remember that I couldn't. Yesterday, it only happened once.

Never take another person for granted and think they will be there to talk to tomorrow. None of us is promised a tomorrow. At 8:00 p.m. on Monday evening, April 27, my friend and I talked and agreed we would talk the next day when she wasn't so tired. At 9:30 p.m., she had the first of two heart attacks. I visited her at the hospital twice the next day while she was on life support. I held her hand. I told her to hang on that none of us were ready to let her go yet. An hour later, I told her that none of us would ever be ready to let her go but she needed to do what her soul needed her to do. At 5:30 p.m., April 28, my friend drew her last breath. I will always remember that day because it was the date that our son was due to be born on many years ago. Birth and death are both important parts of life, so intertwined, both parts of all of our journeys. If you love someone, tell them so, often. Let your actions show that you care. Let your words be kind. Love and take care of yourself too.