I am trying not to feel ashamed of what happened to me. I was a DEPENDENT child. Being a free-spirited child inspired irritation in most adults I encountered. If I continue to blame myself then I am continuing to say I am wrong for who I am.
I had an appointment with my therapist, Lacey, yesterday, and we spoke of the anger I hold onto. She asked me what anger would look like if I were to unleash it on my mom. I sat there speechless.
By nature, I am not someone who enjoys lashing out at people. Anger is a frightening thought for me. As a child, I experienced so much of other people’s anger that as an adult all I have wanted to do is avoid confrontation. Yet all of these years, I have taken my anger and shoved it inward, taking it out on myself-cutting, bulimia, drugs, binge drinking… This all must stop and I have to address the anger. Gradually these bad habits are diminishing the more I talk to Auntie, Lacey, and learn to trust my husband.
It scares me to allow myself to show anger. Lacey asked me what happened when I showed anger as a child. Crying and staring down at my lap, I said, “I would get beat worse.” I will give you something to cry about, seemed to be my mother’s mantra. Crying was not allowed. Perhaps that is why I feel uncomfortable and even frightened to cry in front of others. I have forced the tears down so deep into my psyche that a flood might occur if I let my guard down completely.
She asked me what the tears were about. I shook my head and could not say exactly. I wasn’t having a bad day. If anything, I was having one of my calmer, more focused days. It had nothing to do with the day, but everything to do with my inner sadness and turmoil. I wanted to disappear behind the pillow I was clutching.
A large part of me feels disloyal for telling, for betraying my mom. I told Lacey that my mom would try to inspire fright in me. I was taught to be afraid of everything from mice to planes. Mom is afraid of everything, which was instilled in her by grandma.
I am gradually learning not to be so scared. I still struggle with terror at times however. Lacey pointed out the contradiction between my mother instilling fear in me while also not keeping me safe by abusing me. I have come to the conclusion that she wanted to control me through fright. It was not love. Mom probably read what she was doing as love. Instead of burying my anger, I am using the power of the written word to acknowledge it.