I am angry and I have a right to be angry.
I have never been angry about what happened, not really, but if one more person tells me to look to the future or to forget my past, I will scream!
How do I forget being sexually, physically and emotionally abused? Would you tell your child to forget if it had happened to them? No….but because I am an adult, I am expected to just forget and move on?! I am expected to cope. It is not that easy. I wish it was!
People tell me I can choose to be a survivor and not a victim. They think I choose to be a victim?
Surviving sexual abuse affects the rest of your life. It is not and never will be something that someone can just forget. It is not a choice to be a victim. Our innocence was stolen from us. Our childhood taken away.
I have never been allowed to feel anything. My abusers deprived me of the freedom to feel, to live. I had no one to talk to, nowhere to hide. I was not allowed to cry or to show emotion. If I did I was punished. I kept the pain to myself while inside a part of me died.
I have never owned my story. I have been too afraid and ashamed to tell it but sometimes silence hurts more than words ever will.
I have never felt pain or sadness like I do now. I have never felt anger like this before. An anger that builds inside me the more time goes on. The way thunder and lightning keeps building and gets louder and more noticeable during a storm. It is like all the emotions that I have had to keep hidden for the past twenty years have hit me all at once.
I am mad and I just want to be heard.
It takes no strength at all for an adult to hurt a child but how much strength does it take for that child to get over it? Bruises fade but memories last a lifetime.
We are not strong enough as children to stand up to our abusers so the anger we feel gets turned inward and we attack ourselves. We are a weak target; after all we are already being hurt by people who are meant to protect us.
Our pain turns to sadness. Our sadness turns to anger. Our anger turns to hate. We don’t remember how to smile anymore. The person we hate most is ourselves. We are not allowed to feel, so after a while we feel nothing except numb. Soon the numbness turns to cutting just to feel something or to make the other feelings disappear.
I have spent the past twenty years feeling numb, cutting. I don’t know how to allow myself to feel. I am sad beyond belief but I don’t know how to allow myself to cry. I am still afraid to show my emotions and how I really feel but I cannot pretend and hold everything in for much longer. I am breaking and I am scared.
Healing requires feeling. It requires us to feel sorrow and fear, to feel anger and doubt and confusion. Finally it allows us to feel joy. I hope.
I have never felt this sad before and recently I have started to feel the anger too. The sadness is not going away and I am on the verge of tears every day, but now I feel anger alongside it.
It is the sort of anger where you want to throw something or hit something, except for me I want to hurt myself. I don’t know any other way to deal with emotions.
I am angry.
I am angry at my stepfather for abusing me and taking my childhood. I am angry at my mother and my nan for standing by him and not helping me when I reached out and told them. I am angry at the teacher I told and at the system for falling for their lies and not protecting me. I am angry at people who think I can just forget what happened. Most of all I am angry at myself.
I am angry at myself for not being able to stop him. I am angry at myself for being strong enough to live through what he did to me but for not being strong enough to face it all now. I am angry at myself for not being able to handle the nightmares, the flashbacks, the triggers and the memories. I am angry at myself for needing time off work. I am angry at myself for being sick with depression, anxiety and PTSD. I am angry at myself for finally admitting that I can no longer do this without help and I am angry at myself for feeling selfish about needing help.
Most of all I am angry with myself for not being able to cry. I just want to cry. I want to cry so badly I feel an ache in my chest every single day. I just want to let myself cry and I am angry that I am afraid to do so.
Anger is a combination of hurt, fear and frustration. It is a natural defence against pain and a way to protect ourselves from sadness.
Where there is anger there is nearly always pain underneath.
I am angry.
I am in pain.
I am really, really sad.
I guess anger is just my sadness’ bodyguard and one day I will have to let my guard down, let the anger go and let the sadness out.
I will have to let myself feel it and let myself cry.
Thanks for reading.