Thursday, May 17, 2012
Too many characters, how shocking.
I wrote this on the comment field for this post on Band Back Together but it was too long. Links are blessedly short.
I had to write a whole book telling the whole of my trauma before I could understand how bad my life was; I get it. It's hard to understand how little we have compassion for ourselves.
I understand that people are traumatized by events that seem "minor" compared to some of the things that happened to me. I get that. I see how it has changed the whole course of their life. I don't give myself the same slack. I feel like I am a failure at life because I have ongoing effects from the abuse. I'm ok with being nice to other people as they cope... but not myself. I should be Over It. Damnit.
I'm not over it. PTSD is no joke. What happened to you was very serious. Some of the most serious I've heard about in a first world country. You are out at the far end of the bell curve. We are different. We have actually survived. People who haven't done that have a different perspective on the world. It's ok that we are different.
I often feel like I don't know how to have normal conversations. I feel like everything I know, everything I am was colored by my life when I was a child. I hear over and over in my mind when people are talking to me, "They wouldn't like you if they knew you were a dirty whore who sucked your father's dick." I feel like I want to blurt it out instantly when I meet people so that I can get it over with. I want the people who are going to reject me to hurry the fuck up and do it already. Do it because I am "inappropriate". That way I can feel like I have control.
Dealing with trauma is serious work. I feel like I have to work all.the.time. on my behavior and thinking. I have a lot of hypervigilance. I can't relax and just be with my life. I have to think about how I would be acting if I was a good person and then try to pretend to be that. I'm a nasty angry bitter person in my head and I don't want that to be what my children remember.
I thought about you a lot. I left this comment box open over night and came back to it. It is so easy for me to read things like this and think, "Well duh! Of course she was abused. Who wouldn't recognize that? That is *totally* trauma." I had very similar life events and I gloss them over in my mind. Yeah ok some "bad shit" happened. I can say I sucked my father's dick. I have a hard time saying I was raped.
My dad held a gun to my head and asked me if I deserved to live. I don't think we will ever really forget. I have a hard time figuring out what moving forward looks like. It's hard.
I'm not you. I don't think your struggles look exactly like mine. Nevertheless I can project all I want from this side of a computer. I imagine you have some days that are as bad as my bad days. That's hard. I'm really sorry. On your very worst days remember that your story has the power to make other people feel less alone and scared.
Other women have survived. I can too. Even though I really don't even feel like I want to keep trying some days. Other women have survived. I can too.
Thank you for being with the band.