Child Abuse, Emotions, Family, My story, Therapy

Cleaning up

When I was growing up, I had to keep my room very clean. I was punished if there was junk, clothes or toys on the floor. I guess I let my room get too messy one weekend. S had come over to play and we really made a mess.

My mother got so angry. I don’t understand why. We were kids, maybe seven at the oldest, and we were just trying to have a good time. I didn’t clean my room fast enough to please her. I was hit with a leather belt for every toy that was on my floor. It hurt. My legs and back and arms. Over and over again.

Then I was sent to my room to “think about what I had done”. In addition, I was grounded for a week. No television and no books, except for my school work.

It was bad enough as it was, but my father had to enter the picture. He came into my room and told me that he could get my mother to lift the grounding. I didn’t understand how he could do that. She was always so strict about the punishments she handed out. He sat down on the bed and patted it. All of a sudden, I knew what he wanted me to do. I did it. What else was I going to do? I just laid there. I closed my eyes and tried not to think about what was going on. When he was finished, he helped me pick up my room. True to his word, my sentence was reduced. I could have books, but still no television. That didn’t bother me, I didn’t watch much TV anyway.

 


 

How do I feel? I don’t know. I found this picture that lists emotions and gives line drawings to represent them. I’ve been looking at the drawings trying to match them up with how I might feel if I was feeling anything right now.

I came up with… Frightened. Guilty. Sad. Withdrawn. Lonely.

I’m sitting here writing and I can feel the sting of the leather. I can hear it snap. I can see the fury in her eyes.

But I don’t really feel the emotions. I don’t feel anything in this moment. It’s like I’m separate from everything. It’s like I’m an objective observer.

It’s my goal to talk about this with my therapist later today. When I speak the words, that dissociation tends to break down. So right now, it’s just getting it outside of my head so maybe I can sleep.

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8 thoughts on “Cleaning up”

  1. You must be really proud about your decision of facing the truth lately. It must be really difficult sometime and you must wish you could just make it all disapeared over night. I feel for you, I can’t really imagine what was going in your head when all of this happen. Hope it will all go well with your therapist today. Big hug.

  2. I understand wanting it all to go away; I’m finding that the answer to that is plunging through, rather than avoiding, but it’s really no fun while it’s happening. I wouldn’t mind it just going away on its own. I wouldn’t mind that *at all*.

    Thanks for sharing, and I hope your allergies improve. The pollen around here is miserable, and I was hoping for rain, but it won’t come until tonight.

  3. Kathryn, I am being careful not to say, “I feel sorry for you”. But, rather to say, “I am sorry”. I am so very sorry that fellow members of the human race have hurt you so. I want you to know, I hope you feel comfort, knowing someone you don’t even know, thinks and cares about you daily. As I go through my daily life, whether I’m working, of caring for my family, I DO think of you, and others that have suffered abuse from the hands of those whom they should trust. You have become a daily part of my thoughts and prayers, along with those in my family. I guess these are things I want you to know, I may not be near, but I AM near, if you know what I mean? I am thinking of you always.
    MayPolesOfLife

  4. Hope you slept. Hope you and your therapist can find the place where your emotions are. Naming them and writing these memories is good work.

  5. Elvina… Thanks so much for stopping by. I took a peak at your blog.

    Nadcesca… I’m not sure what I feel about the whole thing. Intellectually, I know it’s a “Good Thing”. But it makes me feel horrible. I dealt with a lot of the sexual abuse issues with a previous therapist. But never the physical abuse.

    Marcy… I got some sleep. My allergies are so bad right now I took some Benadryl and that helped with the sleep. Sometimes I wish this would all go away.

  6. Jigsaw… I do know that moving through it is the only way to go. But gosh… why does it have to hurt so bad??? I know re-experiencing the pain brings pain. And as much as I know there isn’t one, I wish there was an easier way.

    Maypoles… thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers. They really mean a lot to me. Knowing that the support is there is comforting.

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