If you were abused as a child, so many of your thought patterns and beliefs centre around what happened to you. If you were a child who was terribly mistreated and you don’t know what it is called, but you knew that it was not okay, and you wished that you could tell someone, but you did not think that anyone would listen; that forms your beliefs about yourself. You learnt to endure things a child should not have to endure, and so you adjust to it, often in unusual ways, you learnt to cope, to survive. You were powerless to change the situation, so your mind hardened and became cruel to itself in an attempt to toughen up.
You thought that people must have known what was happening to you, because to you it felt like you were screaming, crying out for help or salvation. You were so consumed by it and drowning in it that it was hard to understand that people could not actually see that and come to your rescue. When those people didn’t do anything, you started to realise that no one was coming to save you. The world seemed cold and cruel.
So you started telling yourself to toughen up and get over it. Even after the abuse has ended you are still telling yourself that you deserved it, that it wasn’t that bad, that you don’t get to call it abuse especially if it was a close family member who also told you that they loved you. You don’t get to fall apart, because no one’s coming to save you, remember?
And in those memories, you are always staring at the abuser. Think about it. You are always seeing them, you are always seeing the people who didn’t notice. You are always seeing the people who possibly noticed but said nothing. You never think of turning and looking at yourself.
Freeze the moment. Can you see yourself? Do you remember how long your hair was at the time? How tall were you? What were you doing with your hands? What was your expression? Can you see the look you had in your eyes? These moments build up into the whole world feeling frozen over, but can you just look at what it is? There is a child in front of you, that child is you and they are not okay. All of those things you still say to yourself, that it wasn’t abuse, that it didn’t matter, that it was just life, that you have to get over it, can you say that to the child?
The world does seem impossibly cruel sometimes. That feeling still comes up. But there is some guaranteed compassion available to you at every moment. Your own. At every memory and every pain, you have the option of sitting next to that child and hugging them and telling them they don’t deserve any of this. It felt necessary to scold and berate yourself because in that environment it was necessary to be tough. You are allowed to be kind now.
That child has been waiting ages for some kindness, give it to them. Hug yourself, love yourself, soothe and nurture yourself and most importantly tell yourself that you are safe now.
If you experienced any kind of abuse as a child and are still suffering from the effects Life Therapy with Zita offers a safe, gentle, compassionate environment for you to start healing the past and it’s painful memories. That child in you deserves to be loved and treated with kindness and compassion. You can tell the child that.
To book an appointment call Zita: 07709046643