My Long Road

I wrote a long post about the things I have lived through in my life, and was trying to explain how this played a role in who I am. It got tedious and I didn’t want to write a novel, so here’s the short short version.

I had:

  • seen my mother held at gunpoint by the man I called daddy (my stepfather)
  • been thrown across the room trying to save my mother from that man as he straddled her and slapped her like a rag doll
  • been molested by that man from ages 5-9
  • been petted and degraded by his friends for favors
  • been held at gunpoint by policemen as our house was raided for a drug bust
  • lived in poverty for all of that time. We didn’t have phone services, occasionally ate Hamburger Helper without the hamburger, lived on government commodities and goodwill baskets.

  • Moved across two states with nothing more than what could fit in a minivan
  • struggled with leaving a small quiet country town for a urban school district with racial tensions
  • been molested by the brother I moved in with
  • been molested by the uncle I moved in with
  • listened to my grandmother call my mother no-good trash and say that I was raised by wolves
  • lived in a one-bedroom apartment with 6 people and a baby
  • shared a bedroom with my abuser until I was 13
  • sliced my abuser with a steak knife in a desperate attempt to avoid another beating
  • suffered through three years of attending a school in which most of my classmates had seen naked pictures of my mother screwing various items and men (not my father)

  • tried committing suicide twice before the age of 16
  • started drinking at the age of 13
  • started using drugs at the age of 13
  • started cutting at the age of 13
  • laid stoically through an attempted rape
  • suffered through my parents’ various mental illnesses and irrational fits of rage, which included throwing a stereo, scissors, booster seat, and various books at me at random times
  • listened to my mother swear she was going to kill me because I had the nerve to call her counselor and alert them to her being crazy again
  • deal with my father kicking in my door (and removing the lock for the rest of the time I lived with them) because I had locked it before I left for school to stop my parents from stealing my babysitting money
  • Sit through a long screaming lecture from my mother about how the cops said all the abuse I endured was my fault and that I didn’t love her anymore because I reported the abuse and neglect
  • Ran away from home after my mother and father got into a screaming match and my youngest brother was knocked over in a fit of rage
  • Was denied treatment for my mental illnesses (depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation and PTSD) because my mom felt the therapists were blaming her for my condition.
  • Sit through another lecture from my mother in which she informed me that *when* (not if) I got knocked up, I certainly wasn’t going to get any help or support from them, including having a place to live. That’s rich coming from a woman who had her fist child out of wedlock at the age of 16 and her second at 19. She also refused to give me access to birth control.
  • never learned to: drive, balance a checkbook, drink responsibly, apply for a job, apply for college, or have a meaningful relationship with a partner

Given all of that (and more that I just don’t feel like thinking about or writing about) it is no wonder I ended up in a halfway house for a week while my meds and treatment were ironed out. I spent four years in therapy, 5 years on medication. By the time I was able to get the help I needed, I had internalized the constant stream of negativity and abuse from my family into an auditory hallucination. I thought I could hear people’s thoughts about me, and it was *never* good. It was actually the negative feedback loop I had grown up with, being projected onto others to save my self.

And for once, I can say I am truly past that. I am whole and sane, with many interesting scars and stories to tell about them. I am a complex slave to own, with a trying and tricksy history that makes even the most normal of situations into a challenge at times.

It is that history that makes me confident in saying I know what abuse is, and how N and I live our lives is nothing like abuse. It is that history that makes me confident in saying I can fully offer my consent as a sane adult, because I know what it is like to be an impaired adult. It is that history that makes me able to fully appreciate what I have now: security, love, appreciation, and happiness.

I have walked through the fire, scraped my knees on the jagged edges of insanity, and am whole and pure in the face of the future. I am battle-hardened, sharpened to a wicked point by pain and endurance.

I am, who I am, and I love myself for who I have become.

13 thoughts on “My Long Road

  1. I have, many times, pondered on why I seek submission given my own (miniscule by comparison) history of abuse, I’ve spent hours wondering if I was just broken. I’m beginning to realise, through reading posts like yours, that it’s about knowing that there’s a massive difference between what we consent to do, and the things over which we have no control, which are done to us without consent, without love, without compassion.
    I’m glad you’ve reached a point at which you’re at peace.

    Flip x

    • Flip, if there is anything I have learned in the years I spent in therapy, it is to never compare your life against another’s. Don’t slight your experiences…I’m sure they have impacted you as well. 🙂

      It took me a long long time to accept that I kneel because I want to and not because I am a damaged soul.

      Thank you for reading, and understanding. Sometimes just hearing a “I get you” makes everything easier to bear.

      • Hey 🙂

        You’re welcome, and I do ‘get’ you.
        Sometimes life sucks, other times it doesn’t.
        I embrace the fact that I can see that clearly now, there was a time when it was all black, everything was pain.
        That isn’t the case now.
        When I eventually find ‘the one’ (why do I hate that term so much?), then I too know that my submission will come from a place of strength, as does yours.

        Flip xx

  2. What you are today is a tribute to your strength and determination to find your ‘sane’ compassionate adult self! I’m in awe of what you have overcome. Wishing you must peace and happiness.
    Joyce

    • *blush*
      I do not need an ovation. 🙂 All people are capable of carrying on and getting up one more time, if they have the help and love to carry them through.

      It just took me a lot longer to realize just how strong I can be when needed.

  3. It’s amazing that you’ve survived your childhood, much less overcome it. I’m so happy that you’re happy and well now. I’m sorry I didn’t realize how bad things were when we were kids, and I wish I had done something to help you then.

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