Who Am I, and What Do I Want?

Healing from narcissistic and emotional abuse is a lifelong unraveling. One has to scrape through many layers of gunk made up from the minimization of abuse and misplaced, mis-formed thoughts about one's self and the world they live in. In many ways, I consider myself extremely fortunate and privileged to have escaped my abusers and … Continue reading Who Am I, and What Do I Want?

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Hello Dissociation, My Old Friend

I've always been a daydreamer. As a kid, I spent hours in my own created worlds, whether it was swirling around in an inner tube on the lake, or staring out the car window, lost in some internal medieval landscape with fairies and unicorns. In fact, all of my "good" memories of my childhood are … Continue reading Hello Dissociation, My Old Friend

Out With The Old…

It's New Year's Eve, and I'm spending it deep cleaning my house. I've been working on "good enough" instead of "perfect" all year, my kitchen and bathroom certainly reflect the achievement. I usually have a Sisyphean outlook about cleaning, given that I have three kids and lack the assistance of Alice from The Brady Bunch.  … Continue reading Out With The Old…

Actually, It Was That Bad

Recently, I wrote about the ways "It's not that bad" has kept me from owning and validating the true cost of my traumatic past. There have been times I have envied those with physical trauma because they received all the validation and support that was denied me as a survivor of psychological trauma. There are … Continue reading Actually, It Was That Bad

Scapegoat Upside: It Probably Saved My Life

  I was the scapegoat in my family, and my older brother was the golden child. According to my abusive parents, he could do no wrong, and I could do no right. We were often pitted against each other, as narcissists tend to do with their children. My brother beat me up daily after school, … Continue reading Scapegoat Upside: It Probably Saved My Life

100 Reasons It’s Important to Speak Up

Today I celebrate my 100th post on I Have Something to Say. I started this blog only six months ago as a way to reclaim my own voice, and to sort out my thoughts as I heal from the long term effects of childhood trauma. Like many others, I was coerced into silence by my … Continue reading 100 Reasons It’s Important to Speak Up

Before Forgiveness

One of the most common non-helpful responses to someone suffering from the fallout of abuse is to push the victim toward forgiveness too soon. Usually it's coupled with some form of shame that the victim "should" feel something other than whatever she is feeling. Sometimes, it's coupled with well-meaning platitudes- "It's the Christian thing to … Continue reading Before Forgiveness

A Trauma Milestone

I just spent the last few days on retreat, where my family later joined me. It was some much needed self-care away from the trappings of life. Over the last several months, I've grown more aware of how necessary self-care is for someone like me facing the realities of complex trauma head on. Speaking of … Continue reading A Trauma Milestone

What I Deserve

I have survived quite a bit, and on most days, my resilience and adaptability are strengths, not weaknesses. But there was something about my resilience that made me feel like a fraud. Even though I did survive terrible things, and even though I did turn as much of my life as possible into something positive … Continue reading What I Deserve

The Power of Resilience

Psst. I have a superpower. And maybe you do, too. There are many long term, far-reaching, negative effects that children of toxic parents endure, from physical health problems to emotional and social issues. Children of emotionally abusive parents often have the hardest recovery because it is so difficult to de-program all the negative feedback they … Continue reading The Power of Resilience