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Bearing Through It >> Share Your Story >> I tried to tell - might trigger

Message started by ciaro on Oct 3rd, 2008 at 6:32pm

Title: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by ciaro on Oct 3rd, 2008 at 6:32pm
Recently I've remembered another incident of abuse with my brother.  It is hard for me to absorb, to get my head around and also impossible for me to ignore, it is so strong a memory.
Since trying to process this memory, I seem to be thinking of my mother a lot.  I keep thinking 'why didn't she come and get me' She was just downstairs.  I suppose the answer is, she didn't know.  I feel so betrayed by her.
But I remember I tried to tell her in the only way I knew.
I used to tell her I had a pain, that it hurt and I would point to where I hurt, but she told me there was nothing wrong. She didn't listen, she didn't understand.  Nobody listened to me in that house.  I know I was very quiet and withdrawn, but still, nobody listened.  I was abandoned in a house full of people, lost amid the chaos that was normal everyday life for me, for all of us.
I am very sad and very lonely and so weary of this healing process.
But I remember  'I am always more than my struggles'...

Title: Re: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by Tracey on Oct 4th, 2008 at 6:20am
Hi Ciaro,

I can see such progress in your healing recently with the words you are writing about in your posts and how much stronger you are becoming.

Our abusers were very clever in ensuring that they wouldn't get caught, even where others are in the house.  I am sorry your mother didn't listen to little you when you tried to tell her in your own way.  It's hard for me, as a survivor and mother not to listen and miss the tiniest little signal from my own children; maybe because I am so aware from my own experiences and the different society we live in nowadays compared to our parents generation.  I believe if your mother knew now the signals she missed back then and what she could have prevented from happening further back then, she would be devastated.  What natural human being wouldn't?

All through my own healing I wanted my mother to have stopped my brother, even when she did see it she failed.  I resented her for that for a long time and still have my days where I still do.  However, my mother is emotionally weak and she didn't have the strength and courage to help me, as she still wouldn't be able to do today.  Unfortunately, that is the mother that fate dealt me.  I now accept she is the way she is and she chooses not to change.  What I have learnt is that I have become the total opposite to her through my healing and hopefully to the benefit of my own children.

It is the 7/8 year old child in me that has that yearning for "the mother I never had" and the mother that "would have saved me".  Its the adult in me that can now after all these years accept that I wasn't going to get that and I am here for me now (along with my J).

Please know that I think of you over there and please don't feel lonely as you will be in my thoughts as you continue to heal.


Title: Re: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by ciaro on Oct 4th, 2008 at 7:29am
Hi Tracey,
Thanks for your suppport and encouraging words.  You are right of course, my mother is who she is and at 78yrs shes not going to change, no more than your mother is. And to be honest, I don't want her to know, I don't expect anything from her and at the same time I feel very let down by her, that she didn't protect me or keep me safe when I was a child.  She was so clued in to two other members of my family and their needs and their emotional wellbeing was paramount to her and to keeping the peace for all of us.  I do understand that she had more than most to manage on her own at a time when there was little or no supports.  We were always in crisis as a family, but nobody knew. And we all learned to do what my mother needed and kept up appearances.  'The perfect family'.
You know I'm not so sure she would have done much if she knew.  She couldn't and still can't allow herself to believe the truth of things around her.  I have heard her say 'what happens in a home, stays in a home'.
Anyway, I don't have the energy to try and figure out my mother, she is not a bad person.  I just have to learn to live with the consequences of her inability to see what was under her nose.
My therapist wants me to focus on, consider the possibilty of my inner child and love her.  I suppose this is what is bringing this up.  I hated growing up, I hated that house and I struggle to even let myself think of that little girl.  I have such loathing for her.  She disgusts me.  My therapist said disgusting things were done to her (to me) but I am not disgusting.  Children can't serarate the two. As an adult I can understand the theory of this, allowing the reality of it to seep in is the hard part and my new challenge!!


Title: Re: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by revenna on Oct 6th, 2008 at 1:48pm

I can relate so well to what you wrote about your new memory and the fact that you tried to tell your mother what was going on in your house.  I did the same thing when I was 5.  One day my mother stopped me on the way to the bathroom and asked me why I was carrying a pencil.  I told her I was going to "do what Daddy does."  I know she believed me because she questioned my father about it when he got home.  Unfortunately, she then chose to believe his version of events.

I feel so sad for you, but I hope you can focus on the courage that you had to try and tell your mother.  You were so brave!  I'm sorry your mother didn't/couldn't help you more.

Our mothers played such an important role in what was going on.  My mother died when I was 17 so I never had the opportunity to ask her (as an adult) about what was going on.  It's frustrating, but I think your therapist is right in that we need to focus on our inner child.  We can't change what happened, although I do feel that understanding it a little better would be helpful.  My heart goes out to you, Ciaro, for all the abuse that you suffered.

I like what Tracey said about realizing that she is the total opposite of her own mother.  I have often felt that I am the opposite of both my parents -- by choice.  Maybe that's the good that has come from these experiences.  We've all worked so hard to live our adult lives differently than our past and to do the best we can with each day.

I like what you said at the end of your post, Ciaro -- we are more than our struggles.


Title: Re: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by Mandi on Oct 7th, 2008 at 12:56pm
Hey Ciaro ~

Once again I sound like a broken record ~ I can really relate to you.   There are just so many similarities in our stories.  I know how hard it is when something new pops up.  It's something that we don't want to see ~ but it keeps popping up so we can work through it.  Doesn't make it easier.  I'm sorry that you have to work through another painful memory.  It would have been nice if your mom had saved you.  And most likely, she didn't know.  I think for our generation, our moms just weren't as tuned into their kids or their lives as we are today.  Today we have so much info on child abuse.  If my mom had Oprah to watch, maybe she would have seen the signs.  Not sure.  I think my mom ignored a lot of the same signs that you mentioned.  Not only did I tell her that I hurt down there ~ front and back ~ I also wet the bed until I was 13.  And I also wet myself randomly until I was about 10.  Plus I had chronic bladder infections.  Those are huge clues.  My mom was so aggravated with my complaining that she called me a hypochondriac.  Anyway ~ it would have been nice if we had been saved in our own house.  Or even by somebody outside of the house.  What your brother did was wrong and so horrible.  I'm sorry that your mother didn't notice or listen to your pain.  Maybe things could have been different.  Hang in there during these horrible memories that you are working through!

Big hugs,

Title: Re: I tried to tell - might trigger
Post by ciaro on Oct 7th, 2008 at 1:43pm
Thank you both for being here and for your encouraging words.  My hear aches for both of you and your attempts to tell your mothers and stop  what was happening.  If only your mothers listened and understood, just think how different your childhood could have been. It is so sad.
I can feel more for you both, now as adults and as children, than I can for myself.  I find it very hard to relate to myself as a child.  I was a nothing.  I had therapy again today and again issues about my mother were foremost in my mind.  I, the real me, was not visible to her, to anyone.  I can't remember her ever holding me or even looking at me.  It was as if I was invisible to her.  Now as an adult I just feel invisible and unworthy, a nothing. I am glad I am not a child anymore.  It was awful.  I needed someone who didn't want me.
Now, I can mind myself. Its ironic, now she needs me...
This is a hard place to be.

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