physical abuse: unburdening myself here

  • 5 Replies
  • 2075 Views
*

Sandals

  • Member
  • 204
  • Self love | Self acceptance
    • View Profile
physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« on: November 25, 2014, 03:27:27 AM »
I mentioned to Rain in another post that I'm coming to terms with the magnitude of abuse, something I'd never seen properly before. I knew of things (some repressed) but compartmentalized things tightly to minimize them.

This is still hard for me to say all together, so big breath.

I mentioned in my intro that my mom physically abused me and my siblings. Terrorized is more like it. Here are some of the things she did.

-lots of hitting, with hands and other things. A yard stick was one of her favourites and she would get angry if it broke. I'd like to believe they were all hits to the bottom, but I don't think they were. And does it really matter?

-If we came downstairs after bedtime and it was winter, we were made to sit in the front hallway. It was not insulated and snow would drift in under the door. We would stay there for around 20 minutes and then be sent back upstairs.

-In the summertime, if she got mad at us, we would try to run away. I grew up on a farm and so we would run down the gravel road (if she missed grabbing us) and then hide in the corn field. She would get in the car and drive after us, yelling, at turns angry and at turns crying hysterically. Being children, we would feel compelled to go to her if she was crying and, well, then the rest would happen.

-If I argued with my sister, she would grab the scissors out of the drawer in the kitchen, come grab my hair and threaten to cut it

-If we didn't eat our food or drink our milk, she would hold our noises until we opened our mouths to breathe and force it in.

-I'll never forget the terror the sound of her footsteps on the stairs would bring. In the winter, it was always cold in my bedroom and she refused to give an extra blanket. I would sneak out to sit on the rad in the hallway. But if I heard her coming would run back to bed as quickly and quietly as I could.

I know there's more I'm repressing. I don't really want to remember more, but it keeps coming out in waves.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2014, 03:46:52 AM by Sandals »

*

Rain

  • Member
  • 459
  • Hiding your Light is a loss for everyone
    • View Profile
Re: physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2014, 04:36:32 AM »
This hurts to read this, Sandals.    I'm glad you are letting it out.   Not fun, scary ...but better than having it fester inside you.

She was hurtful, not loving.    Hateful, not kind.    You needed to be protected from her, not constantly exposed to her.

 :sadno:

*

zazu

  • Member
  • 60
    • View Profile
Re: physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2014, 08:39:08 AM »
Sandals -  :hug:
That's terrible, the way you were treated, and you never deserved one moment of that. You deserved so much better. You deserved to live in a loving home.

It might be hard to come to terms with the reality of physical abuse at first, especially if you were told it wasn't "really" abuse, or that "all families are this way". But it will become easier in time. It sounds as if our moms were cut from the same cloth, so I've been were you are now. It gets better.

One of the most helpful things anyone ever said to me on this subject was "it is the abused person who gets to decide what was abuse - not the abuser." 

I wish you well on your journey through this. :hug:

*

keepfighting

  • Member
  • 409
  • I'm not broken just bent
    • View Profile
Re: physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2014, 08:52:12 AM »
 :bighug: :bighug: :bighug:

I am so sorry you had such a rough life with your m. You did not deserve this kind of treatment!  :hug:

I don't have anything to offer except let you know that I believe you and that you are not alone with your memories: My narc mother was mostly passive aggressive, but sometimes she would drop the passive part. Triggers! She would use her hands or anything else that was in her way (wooden ladle, broom....). When I was 16 years old, I put a stop to her physical abuse of me (I distinctly remember that scene in the kitchen): She was about to slap me in the face again but by now I was taller and fitter than she was so I stopped her hand just before it hit my right cheek, held it firmly, looked her straight in the eye and said: "This was the last time you ever tried to hit me. I am taller, I am stronger and I will hit you back." --- Of course, though it stopped her physical abuse of me, it only made her think of other ways to torture me...

Narc mothers are cruel mothers - on many, many levels...

Kudos to you on your journey to healing.  :hug:

kf

*

Butterfly

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • 397
  • Flying Free
    • View Profile
Re: physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2014, 12:05:07 PM »
:hug:  just w huge :hug: no words possible for me right now. :hug:

*

Sandals

  • Member
  • 204
  • Self love | Self acceptance
    • View Profile
Re: physical abuse: unburdening myself here
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2014, 04:48:55 PM »
Thank you all so much for letting me talk about this in such a safe space. I was keeping up with all of your replies, but it took a bit of time to gather up the strength to post in here again. One foot in front of the other is a bit of a slow proposition for me right now, but at least it's progress.  :yes:

This hurts to read this, Sandals.    I'm glad you are letting it out.   Not fun, scary ...but better than having it fester inside you.

Rain - yes, that's exactly it...it festers inside of you. And although I had told a very few people about it, I didn't choose them wisely, as they normalized it. And then the shame just makes you keep it inside even more. So, this is progress, and I trust that exposing it will help it heal.  :yes:

It might be hard to come to terms with the reality of physical abuse at first, especially if you were told it wasn't "really" abuse, or that "all families are this way". But it will become easier in time. It sounds as if our moms were cut from the same cloth, so I've been were you are now. It gets better.

One of the most helpful things anyone ever said to me on this subject was "it is the abused person who gets to decide what was abuse - not the abuser." 

Zazu - yes, that's exactly it, the narrative is that it wasn't abuse. Or if it's coming from my mom, she would say that she did her best and just not be able to give any empathy, remorse or change to understand what it did to me. The other thing that makes it hard is that even though I believe my siblings are working to take the cycle of physical abuse out of their families, they are not acknowledging the impact it had on them, which would invalidate me if I challenged the family system.  :sadno: 

I don't have anything to offer except let you know that I believe you and that you are not alone with your memories: My narc mother was mostly passive aggressive, but sometimes she would drop the passive part. Triggers! She would use her hands or anything else that was in her way (wooden ladle, broom....). When I was 16 years old, I put a stop to her physical abuse of me (I distinctly remember that scene in the kitchen): She was about to slap me in the face again but by now I was taller and fitter than she was so I stopped her hand just before it hit my right cheek, held it firmly, looked her straight in the eye and said: "This was the last time you ever tried to hit me. I am taller, I am stronger and I will hit you back." --- Of course, though it stopped her physical abuse of me, it only made her think of other ways to torture me...

KF - I am so sorry that  you also were physically abused by your NM.  :bighug: Yes, I hear you on the variety of items; I can add flyswatter to the list - not that it was effective, but it was always close at hand.  :blink: 

Thank you, thank you, thank you for saying you believe me. I have this fear, now that I've put this out there, that someone will say I'm lying. And it's an enormous fear, not a small one. I told my T this last week and I know she believes me...and the worst thing is that I know it's *me* telling myself that I'm lying. I'm going to work on this fear with my T in the near future. It feels so irrational, this fear, and I want to understand more what is driving it.

I also had a moment with my mom when I stood up to her. I can't remember exact details (story of my life), but I believe that I pushed her back when she came after me. And of course, then she cried and I felt guilty. The internal confusion caused by all of this is mind-boggling.  :stars: And yep, she switched to other methods then, still fighting for control of me.

Sandals, thank you for sharing this with us. You've helped me by doing so. I knew I was not the only one, but haven't been able to type it out like you did. Very courageous of you! :thumbup: I am going to add the bristle end of hair brushes.

kf, thanks too for your story about standing up and putting a stop to it. I did the same thing, at the same age. We had a 'wordless' exchange, like a Vulcan mind meld & that was the last of it. Like you say,  other forms of torture continued.

Sandals, I've seen your validation list a couple times now, in different posts and gotta say, I LOVE it!  :cheer:


BeHealthy - it helps me to know that this is helpful for you. I get how hard it is to write it out, for so many different reasons.  :hug:  Good for you for standing up to your mom and putting an end to the physical side of it. I believe that if we can stop the physical stuff, we can also stop the other, it's just much harder to do when you're an empathetic person.

And thanks for the compliment on the validation list - this was one of the incredible things that came out of the workshop I did (The Awakening). I have had challenges accepting that they are true for me, but reached a turning point on that last night - will share in a different post. I believe all of these are true for *all* of us.

:hug:  just w huge :hug: no words possible for me right now. :hug:

Thank you for the hugs, Butterfly. Here's a few back to you, too.  :hug: :hug: :hug: