Trauma Trip Home

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LizLemon

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Trauma Trip Home
« on: January 29, 2021, 04:52:10 PM »
Hey everyone! This is my first post so forgive me if it's in the wrong category.

I just got back from another "vacation" back to my home state to spend time with my family. My dad recently had open heart surgery so I was going to show support. I told myself, like I always do,  "maybe it will be better this time" and of course it never is. I have an N mom and my dad has enabled her for years. Whenever I am with my family I feel awkward, lonely, sad and disrespected.  The guilt trips my mother lays on me are unbearable; if I ever attempt to spend time with my old friends. Yet when I'm spending time with her does she try? or ask me questions about myself? Does she show any real interest in me as a person AT ALL? Of course not! It is one of the most insulting things I've had to deal with, she lays these guilt trips on me and makes me feel awful like I am a terrible daughter if I don't spend every second with her, yet when she's with me she could care less about my presence.  I feel so sad and alone when I'm going through this, like I'm the only person with a family who makes them feel worse and not better. Obviously I know that's not true and that's why I'm posting here.

I have done a lot of work on myself over the years and I am proud of the confident, intelligent woman I have become. But the second I get anywhere near my mother it feels like it all disappears. Like I'm 16 again making mistakes and not worth anything. It takes me a few days - week to bounce back once I get away from her. I can honestly see the difference in my face even when I am around her. My eyes look sad, my skin looks worse. It's crazy. Does anyone else feel like they need a vacation from their vacation? What has helped you deal with the feelings of guilt and depression that come up when you're around your dysfunctional family? Thank you in advance!

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saylor

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2021, 11:12:46 PM »
Welcome, LizLemon :wave:

Yep, that sounds like a pretty awful ďvacationĒ. Iím sorry to hear that your M acts so apathetic about you. Have you ever asked her about it, and how did she respond? Is she that way with everyone, or just you, do you think?

To answer your question about what helped me (with the situation you described): well... I chose to cut contact with my abusive father. Iím someone who doesnít believe that we automatically owe our parents an ongoing relationship regardless of how they treat us, and I had no personal yearning whatsoever to be around him and try to make the relationship workóhe harmed me way too much, for too long, and never exhibited the slightest remorse or even acknowledgement, so I walked away and never regretted it

To be clear, I donít make recommendations about this kind of stuff... Iím just sharing what I did (to answer your question)

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Not Alone

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2021, 02:47:46 AM »
LizLemon,

I don't have answers to your questions, but I wanted you to know that I read your post. I hear that your time with your family made you feel sad and lonely. Glad you are on OOTS and I hope you feel supported here.

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rainydiary

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2021, 03:41:27 AM »
LizLemon, I appreciate you sharing and bringing up this topic.  It has been on my mind in a different way.  My trips to visit my FOO are no picnic but I experience way worse trauma when visiting my in-laws.  I am still trying to untangle it all as I think specific to them my husband behaves in ways that trigger things in me.  As Iíve been on my healing journey I am able to view these situations differently and am learning what is really bothering me.  I think I find that when I know what is bothering me, I do my best to craft the situation into something I can handle.  For instance, keeping conversations surface, limiting the time I am with the people that hurt me, not being alone with the people that hurt me.  This is easier for me to do with my FOO and much harder with my in-laws. 

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Kizzie

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2021, 06:32:01 PM »
Hi LizLemon and a warm welcome to OOTS   :heythere: 

I could have written your post myself so no you're definitely not alone in what you feel when you go home.  It was never a vacation for me either and I would come home so much worse off than when I went, including shrinking in age and a growing sense of vulnerability, self-criticism, low self-worth...  We're not really suffering from post traumatic stress, in fact we're traumatized each time we're with those who abused/neglected us. 

Our responses/feelings all tell a story about the trauma we endured and still endure when we are around those who are supposed to love us but make us feel small, lacking in worth, unsafe and unloved.  It's why I eventually chose to go low and no contact with my family (a lot of NPD throughout).  It didn't actually feel like much of a choice actually, I felt like I had to in order to survive and recover because they were not ever going to change (and they haven't).

So sorry you went through this again, I know how much it hurts and how it throws you off balance.    :grouphug:

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LizLemon

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2021, 04:10:13 AM »
Thank you for the responses! I really appreciate it.  I am feeling better now that I'm settled again back home, away from them haha... I am realizing my next move should probably be more limited contact. I think I am just coming to terms with the fact that I do not owe them anything for "raising" me and if someone makes you feel badly, no matter who it is, you have no obligation to be around them. Thank you again for the support  :grouphug:

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Kizzie

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Re: Trauma Trip Home
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2021, 04:47:03 PM »
 :thumbup:    :grouphug: