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#739 - 03/14/06 10:39 PM abuse ingrained personality
Kid A Offline
Member

Registered: 10/17/05
Posts: 85
My abuse happened at a very young age and it is hard to imagine my personality without its effects. I can't rememeber many things about my childhood; its a blur and some of it a total blackout. I barely have a memory of me as boy capable of recieving and giving love. With nothing to look back to, its hard not to say, this is me, this abuse I endured, escaped, and denied has become me. It is me to the core. I know these things aren't true, or shouldn't be true, or I hope they're not true, but they feel true. Who am I without abuse? I developed with a scared and frozen shell. That is how I learned to relate to the world. Without that who is left?


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#740 - 03/14/06 11:00 PM Re: abuse ingrained personality
phoster Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/21/03
Posts: 758
Loc: ohio
i still fight this feeling some days. the only thing i know to say is that yes, it is you. everything in our past combines to make us the person we are here today, and there really isnt nothing to change that.

if you are just beginning your journey, right now that seems like it is all bad, but it isnt. i think as you get to know the real you more, you will find out a lot of good things go along with that, including strengths you dont even see now. you survived, and in that, you are strong. it led you to get help, grow, become a new person, a better person. some people spend thier whole lives without ever maturing and growing the way you will through recovery. being a survivor has its perks once you get through the hardest stuff. i know that isnt the best wording, but there is a silver lining to it all.

right now it feels like a curse, but where you say the abuse made you the person you are in a bad way, i say it with pride. childhood sexual abuse made me the way i am, and i am proud of the person i've become. i am proud of being a survivor.

_________________________
compassion is a light even to the darkest soul

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#741 - 03/15/06 03:50 AM Re: abuse ingrained personality
Splitting Offline
Member

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 62
God what a timely thread. My abuse started at 6 months. My entire life I either felt nothing or total filth. Any laughter and fun was purely superficial.

Two weeks ago I had a great three days. new meds were working, good therapy sessions, then all hell breaks loose. My therapist tell me that I am making progress in that I can recognize that my anger is directed inappropriately at key people in my life.

while I appreciate their support I am now stuck in hell with no feelings toward any other adult in my life...including a really special lady that just wants to help.

It is so hard to look at her and have to say, "I know that you are the same person that i so loved and enjoyed two weeks ago, but I feel nothing toward you now. I actually get nauscios thinking of being with you". That is not living, that is breathing. How long does this crap go on! So they tell me I am Borderline...thanks for the label, now what! Am I doomed to hate anyone that gets close to me?

I did not mean to steal your thread, but being engulfed in the filth seemed to be a siliar feeling. All I can say is that we have no options but to hang on.

Danny


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#742 - 03/15/06 04:26 AM Re: abuse ingrained personality
RICK57 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Loc: ENGLAND
I came here just over two years ago, wearing a very thick shell of abuse. Since then I've discarded that shell completely, found a thinner one that I put back on, as I grew, I need a larger one again.

I think we are a bit like Hermit Crabs... always need a shell for protection. If we loose one shell, we need another one to replace it. Hermit Crabs really do need their shells for protection. We have to gradually realise that we can do without it! I think I'm loosing the need for mine, but I'll keep it in a cupboard, just in case!

Best wishes...Rik

_________________________
*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

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#743 - 03/15/06 05:28 AM Re: abuse ingrained personality
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Kid A,

You ask a really important question:

Quote:
That is how I learned to relate to the world. Without that who is left?
Can I comment from a position that's maybe a bit further down the path? For about six months now I have been making major progress and I feel like I no longer identify myself as Abused Larry. I am just me, Larry, who happens to have been sexually abused as a boy and is working on his problems.

It was difficult to give up identifying myself with what was done to me, for exactly the reasons you state. In a sense, and without thinking of it that way, I feared that if I really denied that the abuse is part of me there would be nothing left. I was afraid that if I jettisoned the whole lot I would discover that I really was a total worthless wreck, beyond saving or recovery.

What I have found instead bro, is a totally different scenario. In a way I was living in a garbage dump, surrounded by memories and effects of abuse that I thought were part of me. They weren't, and gradually I have been clearing that crap away. It's a big task and I am definitely not finished. But as I clear away the dump I am beginning to see myself and the world the way it really is. I have all sorts of possibilities and qualities; I always did! But I couldn't see that before.

Now that I can see all that, I don't know what to do next. I feel like I am reinventing myself, or maybe I am simply polishing up the person I always have been. I don't know. I really don't know what my way forward is, but what is important is that I know there IS a way forward.

I can see the truth of what guys on ahead of me have been saying as they call back to encourage us. They say it gets better and it was worth all the work.

I can already say I believe them. \:\)

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#745 - 03/15/06 09:32 AM Re: abuse ingrained personality
John Oarc Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/10/06
Posts: 633
Loc: Louisiana
Being proud of the thought of being a survivor was not something that I felt comfortable with at first, like saying "Hello, my name is John and I am codependent" I hated that because I felt it would keep me down, keep me reminded that I had a problem, but as Phoster says you survived and you are still fighting, it is something to speak of and it is note worthy. Just look at it like this, how many people do you think are still out there that have no idea what drives them to do the things they do, how many people have never looked on the internet for a site like this, looking for answers talking to others, trying to deal with the problem, the pain. It takes courage to do that and I promise you this, not many people find their way to where you are today. So yes we have been wronged, abused, raped.... but sometimes I have to look at people that are dealing with cancer, strokes, spinal cord injuries and think that they would give it all up to walk through my problems. Not trying to down play SA but man I would rather be here than in a wheelchair or on deaths door with cancer. Because we are here on this site typing out our hearts we are truly courageous, warriors of the mind. Hang in there man you are somebody, you are worth talking to and more.

_________________________
Whatever It Takes, God


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#746 - 03/15/06 12:12 PM Re: abuse ingrained personality
Kid A Offline
Member

Registered: 10/17/05
Posts: 85
Today at work, after starting this thread, I relaxed at our staff meeting. Writing here got me to realize that I was making assumptions that other people view me as unworthy of time and love so why fight for it. I'm starting to think of it not as a fight, not all or nothing, not they like me or they hate me. This is hard but it worked somewhat today. I didn't feel the need to fit in or say the right thing, I was simply almost me, which normally I'm too scared to do for fear of what others will think when they see beneath the hardened shell. The one line from Victims No Longer that always gets me close to tears is something like: (paraphrase)"you'll start to find people liked you despite the masks not because of them." This thought along with all of your posts gives me faith that I can slowly shed my protective layers and build new ones, that I choose, not out of fear from what some sick pervert said and did to me, but from the freedom to choose who I am and what I will do at any given moment, the freedom to play spontaneously with words and movement without fear that a mistep will kill me. Easier said than done, but I'm trying and hearing of many of you who have fallen and gotten back up again gives me hope. Anyway I fell for a little while but feel like I'm starting some new point of recovery. I'm just hoping its a little easier than the first 6 months of breaking my denial were.


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#747 - 03/15/06 12:28 PM Re: abuse ingrained personality
VN Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 723
We are what we become through everything of life. Some that is good, some is bad. To try to know who we would be without it now, it is impossible. All us, the abuse is part who we are. But it is not ALL that we are. That is most importent thing to know I think.

VN


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#748 - 03/15/06 12:34 PM Re: abuse ingrained personality
shadowkid Offline
WARNING from ModTeam, September 2013: user "Shadowkid" was exposed as a hoaxer. His entire online persona and stories of sexual abuse were fiction. We encourage you not to become emotionally concerned by anything you see in any of his posts. Thank you

Registered: 11/18/05
Posts: 2437
kid ,i think what happens is we grow up with that shell and while it protects us it also prevents us from learning the basic skills we need to relate to the world when we are adults. so now here we are in the adult world without the skills to live in it ,my shell is bigger and harder than it was during my abuse ,because everything outside it seems dangerous.one of the things i lost was the ability to grow up and learn about how to relate to other people ,we go from being a kid who knows nothing to being a kid who knows way to much overnight ,all the growing up in between is lost.for me the confusion caused by my abuse is a terrible affect ,the whole damn world confuses me .sorry i'm lost here i think shadow

_________________________
its not hard to fall
when you float like a cannonball - damien rice

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#749 - 03/15/06 12:35 PM Re: abuse ingrained personality
shadowkid Offline
WARNING from ModTeam, September 2013: user "Shadowkid" was exposed as a hoaxer. His entire online persona and stories of sexual abuse were fiction. We encourage you not to become emotionally concerned by anything you see in any of his posts. Thank you

Registered: 11/18/05
Posts: 2437
kid ,i think what happens is we grow up with that shell and while it protects us it also prevents us from learning the basic skills we need to relate to the world when we are adults. so now here we are in the adult world without the skills to live in it ,my shell is bigger and harder than it was during my abuse ,because everything outside it seems dangerous.one of the things i lost was the ability to grow up and learn about how to relate to other people ,we go from being a kid who knows nothing to being a kid who knows way to much overnight ,all the growing up in between is lost.for me the confusion caused by my abuse is a terrible affect ,the whole damn world confuses me .sorry i'm lost here i think shadow

_________________________
its not hard to fall
when you float like a cannonball - damien rice

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