I’ve read other bloggers who share information about their own recovery journeys and found them very helpful. They offer resources, visuals, graphs, charts, and how-tos. Their posts are well written and appealing to many different kinds of learners. Their websites are free of many ads too. Many thanks to any and all who break the silence barrier by writing and sharing their experiences.
One thing I most appreciate about their blogs is how they can define in specific terms what category their abuser fits into or what type of abuse they survived if the writer is a survivor of trauma. If not a survivor or victim, then I appreciate how the writer can define so clearly the type of mental health issue he or she suffers from and all of the different types of coping strategies that work or don’t work with those particular struggles.
Because I can’t do that. Not without leaving out or neglecting a group of individuals who have suffered in some way and come here for anonymous, safe support and resources. Also not without delving deeper into memories and experiences not yet accessible to my conscious mind. Many of my alters like to take turns and write posts here on the blog too. That means the quality and content are sometimes inconsistent and may seem unprofessional or unrelated to the topic. But every post is some how related to trauma, abuse, neglect, recovery, and resources; that much I guarantee.
What I’ve shared so far is the tip of the iceberg. The focus has been on current events and present coping strategies. I will continue to do that. And as often as possible, one or all of the alters will try to remind the post author to include a photo or quote or something visual to go with the words. That is difficult because at heart, I am a writer. Words are my best communication tool. But I want to connect with other types of learning and processing styles too, so adding in audio/visual elements is a personal goal to improve this blog.
And this is my hobby. I wish I could dedicate more time, but work and life, maybe even graduate school in the near future, will take precedence. If I knew of a way to get this site to pay for itself without using ads, I would do that. Then I could dedicate more time to building the resource pages and more interesting posts. And I could expand the website to offer other kinds of resources too.
But for now, this is it. I write what I know. I share what I learn. And I hesitate to label anything because I am not a professional. My therapist does not put labels on my parents other than to call them sociopathic and psychopathic. Nor does she label me or any of there other clients other than to call us trauma survivors.
She understand that I was a victim of incest by both parents and some family members by marriage; along with that was neglect, physical abuse, emotional abuse, verbal abuse, bullying, shaming, and financial abuse from my parents, sibling, family members, educators, physicians/providers, and community; finally the sexual abuse from my pediatrician and his ring of pedophiles, cult abuse and ritual torture from the religious cult who ran under the guise of Mormons and had connections with the pedophile ring and drug connections within the community.
I’m 33 going on 34, a victim and a survivor. I changed my name and moved across the country to try to get away from the negative influences of my past. Now I have a chance to live without worrying that my past will haunt me every moment of every day.
So no, I don’t use labels. I don’t try to figure out what kind of abuser my parents or other perpetrators were. I do read a lot of books about internal family systems, intergenerational trauma, toxic relationships, shame, compassion, coping techniques, coping strategies, and whatever disorders are symptoms of my main diagnosis (PTSD). Then I work on my own (with my alters) and with therapists to apply what I’ve learned. Knowledge is power.
Understanding them and their motivations helps me understand myself and my reactions to the world around me.
It also gives me perspective so that I can separate the individuals from the behaviors and thoughts. By doing this, I can hold the perpetrators responsible, can hate their words and actions, without blaming the human beings.
Blame enables shame, anger, and victimization.
Accountability, aka holding them responsible, fosters forgiveness, compassion, empathy, acceptance, knowledge, and healing.
Which would you choose?
Thanks for reading.