A huge part of my healing has been healing from what I believed about myself due to the abuse and what others thought was true about me.
Most of my worldview was formed by those who sexually abused me. I went from loathing to not loathing. I still had self-hatred. I went from hatred to no hatred for self. It took me a long time.
My inners gave me someone in my life, for the first time as an adult, who saw me and loved me, who saw all the good in me and found me lovable. As hard as learning I was multiple was and as hard as integrating that awareness into my life and my life history was, it was hugely empowering due to their love of me. I still feel so ashamed that they look at me and feel love, I wish I didn’t, I wish I believed all the good they see in me.
I think that having survivor friends and their ability to see me differently than my family has been a huge part of my ability to change my views about self. At times I have noticed that my online survivor friends saw me in ways that no one in my life had ever done. I can’t say that I was able to immediately take in their new views, not at all, it took years and years to slowly let that they saw me that way.
My family has always told me how depressed and depressing I am, how negative I am and how much I need to think positive, ignore my past and all it’s abuses, and focus only on the good things. Yes I was under a mountain of horse manure, but I didn’t think it was accurate to say that I had major depression. Yes I had a lot of needs and no one to help me meeting those in my life. Yes I had not ever been parented or loved by my mother. Yes my father was an alcoholic. So for me I always thought that I had a lot to be depressed about, not some unattached depression, but a huge measure of grief to feel and overcome. I know that it was easier for my family to see me as the problem, as the one with “mental problems.”
I know that my family of origin was always heavily invested in scapegoating me. I don’t think that you ever see a person accurately that you are scapegoating. You are putting all the dysfunction and blame of all the family and abuse onto a member of the family, usually one member.
So no there is no way they could see me accurately. But their worldview was pervasive, at times it still is. I still get caught up in it all, feeling down and ugly about myself, until I have to remind myself that is their image, their view, and that it is not accurate. Well it is a process. It takes time.
About five years ago one of my best friends told me that I was so positive, so focused on healing and the knowledge that healing would happen. Well I almost fell over. It took me a while. I had to think long-term on that one. I am still trying to integrate that into who I am. So recently several other survivor friends have mentioned my being positive. Okay, I am resolved not to argue about that. I’ll try to see it. I’ll try to believe it. But I still don’t know what to do with that.
It might take me some more time.