Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Victims of Child Abuse Know How to Be Abused

When I think back on my early life, the thing that jumps out at me the most is how abused I was. Not just as a child but as an adult as well. I mean if you could get paid for being a victim, I'd be filthy rich! I seemed to move from one mess right on into another.

Now, looking from the perspective of how much I've changed, I can see why I got into all of that trouble. I had no skills to protect myself from vicitimizers. Actually quite the opposite was true, I was such a victim it was like everywhere I went I was wearing neon lights saying abuse me .

The rules for survival in my family of origin where very much the rules to keep myself stuck in the role of a victim. Don't make waves. Don't question authority. Don't talk to the neighbors. Don't tell anyone what goes on behind closed doors. Don't trust yourself. The list goes on and on.

I grew up believing that I was stuck, that I had no choices, that I had no personal power. I had no idea how to place blame where it was due because everything I ever saw was pointing the blame in other directions. I couldn't look someone straight in the eye because they might see how truly flawed I was. All things that kept me stuck.

And the biggest trick of all, I believed the key to happiness was in making other people happy. If I could just make people like me, then I would be ok. With a belief system like that there was no way I could ever do anything but fail.

I was a raving co-dependent long before the term was even popularized. And, unfortunately, I was damn good at it. The harder I tried to be happy, the deeper the hole I dug for myself.

I remember the first time I saw a list of the characteristics of a co-dependent. A light bulb went on in my head and the beginnings of the trap began to fall away. Today I can look at that list and know it doesn't apply to me anymore. I am my own person. Not the person created by my unfortunate circumstances but the person I have chosen to be.

1 comment:

keepers said...

once that realization starts to become clear we gain so much power over self and we begin to shed those shackles of our upbringing and break away from the brainwashing we accepted as fact, and wow does it feel good!!! we enjoy your posts very much!!

peace and blessings