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Not good at this


scrappy
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I'm not very good at this and don't know where to start. I'm having a hard time sleeping right now. I didn't sleep well last night. I had nightmares. I watched a show and it made me remember something from when I was a kid. The memories feel so intense even though it was twenty years ago and it's just left me feeling not ok. It's hard when things like this come up. It's like I can't shake it.

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I've done a therapist before and I have one I can go to, but whenever I do it's like I have no problems when I'm there. Everything just seems fine and I can't remember why I even came. Last night I tried to write about it and I think I get stuck at not knowing who to blame. I look at my parents even now and they just don't know how to deal with things. I can't blame them because they don't know any better. Why should I be hurt by people who don't know any better? And I know I'm not supposed to think it was me even though that's how it feels.

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Maybe if you were able to bring these concerns up in therapy you might be able to get a little further with talking about it and a little further with what is bothering you. I used to make notes and bring them in to therapy. I even wrote little papers at one time. You might need to feel a little more comfortable with talking about it first. You are welcome to talk more here if that helps!

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Part of the problem is that I don't know if there is anything I can even do. I can't change the past. I can't change who my parents are. What happened, happened. I know it shouldn't mean that there was something wrong with me. But sometimes I feel dragged back to then. I must not be making any sense or I don't know what I'm wanting here. If there's nothing I can do, then theres nothing you can do. How could there be? I just don't want to feel like this. But maybe that's just how it is and I have to live with it.

They weren't good parents but they didn't have good parents and didn't know how to be. I needed them and they only hurt me. I keep feeling that hurt.

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The person who created this site told us that part of our identity is found in relationships. In a way a negative identity message happens in negative relationships. The great thing that can happen working with a therapist is you get to experience yourself in a healing relationship and find a more positive direction. You do not have to get stuck in blaming your parents for everything or blaming yourself for everything. It is possible to develop parts of you that haven't yet had a chance.

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"I can't blame them because they don't know any better."

Well, if blame matters at all (it's not one of my favorite words), then I would agree with you that it shouldn't be attached to people who did their best and failed.

So, why do you get blamed? You were the kid in the situation, whatever that situation was, exactly. I doubt that you did anything but your best at the time, even if you can second-guess yourself now and imagine other things you might have done. Okay, you didn't succeed in preventing what happened, but, and here's the important part, neither did anyone else and it was their job to keep you safe, not yours (that's the definition of "kid", to me.) So if you're feeling magnanimous and forgiving, please remember that such charity is supposed to begin at home.

I'm not saying "don't blame yourself because you're not supposed to", but "don't blame your kid self more than you do the adults." ("Should" isn't a big favorite word of mine, either.) There's only one person you absolutely have to live with the rest of your life, and they're inside your head with you. It only makes sense to give him or her the benefit of caring about them. Speaking of which, I have a friend who keeps a lot of string in a tin labeled "Slack", and he'll gladly cut you some if you haven't any for yourself. :-)

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Thanks. I'm actually feeling a little better now. I invited friends over and tried to keep myself busy. Some part of me feels off still, though. It's similar to something that happened a year ago. I was at work one day, it had been a stressful week, and I had a strange spell of dizziness and disorientation and ended up going to the hospital, which turned out to be a very bad experience, and ultimately they didn't know what happened. But I continued to feel disoriented and outside of myself for a good week afterwards. I went to a doctor again a few days later and it was another bad experience. (Part of the problem was me, I think--I couldn't properly explain what was going on and it made everyone frustrated and annoyed. The experience there and at the hospital left me terrified of doctors for a while. I finally got the courage to see someone a few months later and had a check up and everything was fine physically.) This feels a little like that again. A weird feeling of disorientation and feeling outside of myself. It must be all in my head, but I don't know. It will pass I suppose.

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Sorry if I've been cryptic. I forget sometimes that no one else can see inside my head. My parents were emotionally and physically abusive, but they don't see it that way. They did the best they could. There was a time twenty or so years ago when I was basically having a breakdown and needed their help (I was in my early teens at the time) and was instead threatened and punished. Memories of this is what's been coming up. I think that's why the hospital thing last year was so distressing as well. I needed help and everyone only seemed angry at me. So it makes me feel like I must be unworthy of help, or that my problems aren't real, or that I'm going about it all wrong or something.

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I know a feeling of splitting apart, not feeling myself, and it is a very difficult thing to go through. There are states a person can get into as a result of trauma where you are in trouble with yourself because maybe you don't want to be you on some level, and it can really get tricky. These states can heal, though. It is possible to heal from trauma, it's just hard to do on your own. If you feel tons of self doubt and even self loathing, that is you working against you, and that's a good time to reach out for some help.

You are doing a good job of seeing the patterns here, scrappy. I hope you feel a little relief talking about it.

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Thanks. What you say makes a lot of sense. I do try to reach out when I feel the self doubt and self loathing, though sometimes reaching out is the hardest thing to do when I feel like that. It is helpful to talk. Today was easter and visiting with family and anytime I spend too much time around them my sense of self erodes. But there is a whole world beyond them. I'm certainly better at "seeing the patterns" than I used to be.

Does anyone here ever sometimes feel like some part of them wants to give in and self destruct even though you can still see the way out? It's like a desire to hold onto misery like its safe or something. does that make sense?

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