Sometimes we are not even aware of how traumatic an event was in our life until we talk about it. It’s why I’m a huge advocate for therapy. Until we find a safe space to open up and share our stories then we are often not aware of just how bad it was for us.
I was sharing the other day with a friend some of my traumatic events. I’m going to share a few with you.
- My parents had a very dysfunctional relationship. They slept in separate rooms by the time I was in 1st grade. They fought and talked about each other behind each other’s backs to me.
- When I was 10 years old they divorced and I was made to choose. I lived with my mother but I wanted to live with my daddy.
- They were emotionally immature and according to my therapist I came out of the womb saying, “Nobody knows what the hell they are doing.” and they didn’t. I was a responsible and emotionally mature at an early age.
These are all very traumatic events for a child. Not only is it traumatic but these specifically caused an abandonment wound. Just because both parents are in the same household does not mean it’s a healthy functional relationship. Emotional abandonment is real. If your parent’s career, narcotics, church, friends, hobbies, etc..was more important than taking care of your emotional needs, that’s abandonment.
When we don’t have role models in our lives to show us how to have healthy functional relationships it causes us trauma. Trauma along with abandonment wounds allows us to make poor choices. We make choices based on what is familiar. Doesn’t matter if it’s dysfunctional, we pick it because it’s comfortable for us. We believe our picker is broken because we haven’t been taught how to make good choices. Then when the dysfunctional relationship erupts like a volcano, we struggle with the “W’s”. Why? When? What now?
We will keep repeating the pattern until we have broken it. But easy, let’s not judge ourselves based on the decisions we made through our ignorance. We didn’t have healthy parents or role models. We were thrown into dysfunctional situations at a very early age that was too complex for our young minds. It’s not our fault but the healing is our responsibility. Our caretakers did their best with their toolbox. We need to let go of anger and resentment because they did not intentionally put this generational curse on us. Their parents had some toxic traits too that just got passed down.
In the words of Alanis Morissette
You live, you learn
You love, you learn
You cry, you learn
You lose, you learn
You bleed, you learn
You scream, you learn