Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Power of a Parent

While I’m on the subject of mothers, and in all fairness, my parents never sexually abused or beat my brothers and sisters and me. I was never physically afraid of either of my parents. However, their attitudes towards us, particularly me, set me up to be molested by someone else. I desperately hope whoever reads this will have an open mind and try to understand some of the characteristics a parent might possess that would be considered emotional abuse of a child. I know some of you might say, “Your mom did her best.” I don’t disagree. My mother, though has problems of her own and ways to justify why I deserve the way she treats me (that’s another entry), so read on.

I remember my dad playing horsey with me. He got on his hands and knees and gave my brother and me rides around the living room floor as he bucked, bumped, and whinnied to make our ride more enjoyable. The rest of my family cheered and hooted as they watched. My dad also swung me up and around when I was small and bought me a horse when I was 10.

My grandmother raised my father and his siblings alone after divorcing her abusive husband. She didn’t know how to show love and passed that inability on to her children, though my father did his best to show me he loved me – he just never said it and he never interrupted when my mother verbally abused me in public.

On the other hand, Mom doesn’t know how to show love, either. In fact, she handed down her own parent’s coping skills: punishment for showing any kind of emotion. She punished me often for showing any sign of emotion other than laughing. Mom packed up her feelings with a big black ribbon, hiding them where they wouldn’t be found, and they live there still. She is afraid to feel anything, to care about anything, and she never cries. She became angry and hateful towards the child who unwittingly caused her to want to cry, to hug, or to be sad.

Mom taught us to pack away our feelings and fight like mad to keep the fragile chaos hidden. That’s where my emotions and feelings were when my alters began to surface – they were tied up tight and I wasn’t about to let any of them out. I held them so close to me, none of us could breathe, yet all of us survived.

Next: My A-List of Caustic Abuse Behavior


Kate said...

Hi Ivory,

I agree with you, emotional abuse lays the foundation for a child to be abused. I learned that from my psychology professor in the child abuse class. It was so surprising to me that this was new information for so many of my clasmates.

Good and healing thoughts to you.


Ivory said...

Hi, Kate,
Wow, I found that this kind of info was new to others, too, and it surprised me! But, yeah, being ignored can do all kinds of things, except raise a well adjusted child.