Survivor Resource Pages (Forty pages of resources, non-profit organizations, articles, and healing support for survivors of child sexual abuse, rape, sexual assault, domestic violence, and dealing with the aftermath of child sexual abuse.)
I’ve been noticing in the last six months that many survivors of abuse have clutter issues. I think it happens much more than is commonly known about in survivor of trauma circles or acknowledged, talked about, felt about, or healed from. It’s one of those issues that people have a lot of shame about; a huge amount of shame. What I have learned is that I can know someone for a long time and not know they are dealing with this issue. No matter where clutter issues come from, there is a lot of unbalance in the issue, one that most survivors can relate to. Having an ordered home, a safe home, a safe space is a part of finding balance that is being a survivor of childhood abuse and trauma along the healing path.
I tended to hide it myself. I was very ashamed and yet covered that up with the attitude that I wanted my own space, my own home, to have an attitude towards others and to judge them back for the judgement that I felt from them, it helped me keep others outside where I wanted them and not inside. It gave me a good reason to not have people over. I liked that. I liked it a lot. I could have my dolls and my toys and not have people give me odd looks and say nasty comments. I could be who I really was, mulitple, and have a place where we could be. It never occured to me that others could enter my space and be safe, treat me well, be loving and good and kind. I didn’t have a template to believe that was possible.
I spent about ten years de-cluttering. I’ll try to write some more about that as the year goes on. I won’t say that my clutter issues are completely resolved, just that with almost all my thing in a storage space in Ohio, well I don’t have any need to go through my things and re-evaluate them since the move. Once I get my stuff home again I will re-visit that issue with those belongings.
I really believe that being knee deep in clutter was all connected to all my issues of being a survivor and being physically disabled. I will say now that it is hard to respect the inners in a multiple system while throwing away their things. It is difficult, it breaks trust, and it is hard to make it up to them. Being multiple adds layers to having clutter and extracating yourself from it.
One book that was huge for me was “Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui” by Kathryn Kingston. It’s a small book and yet it had a huge impact on me. When I would get down and overwhelmed by the whole huge process I would get the book from the library and re-read it for the energizing I needed.
I don’t think that I am cured of clutter, just that I have more space now. Space that allows energy to flow in, for life to be lived, and for friends to come in. It’s a process.