It Must Be Me

“If I, as a child, claim that something awful has happened—that someone has done something terrible to me—and everyone around me acts as if nothing is the matter, then either I must be crazy, or all of them are. And when you’re a kid and your life depends on all these people, there is no choice: of course, I must be crazy.” Secret Survivors by E. Sue Blume
“Of all the horrid ramifications of child abuse, the self-beliefs formed by the child reap the greatest destruction. Abuse is the most penetrating and permanent communication possible, and it always conveys to the child one or more of several messages: I caused it to happen. – It’s my fault because I am bad. – I don’t deserve any better.” Am I Bad? Dr. Heyward Ewart
“Many survivors have a difficult time with the concept of the child within, even though forgiving that child is an essential part of healing. Too often women blame her, hate her, or ignore her completely. Survivors hate themselves for having been so small, for having needed affection, for having “let themselves” be abused.” The Courage to Heal by Ellen Bass & Laura Davis

As the saying goes, if I had a nickel for every time I’ve thought to myself or said, “I must be crazy,” I would be a very wealthy “crazy” person indeed!  If I also had a nickel for every time I’ve said, “I’m a monster,” or “There’s something wrong with me,” or “It’s all my fault,” or “I deserved it,” or “I must have done something to cause it to happen,” I would be more wealthy than Bill Gates.  Truly.

It’s very hard to forge through all the feelings of guilt and shame.  It’s hard to believe I’m worth anything and that I didn’t cause everything bad that happened to me.  Sometimes, I can mentally comprehend that I am not to blame.  But most of the time, I completely believe it’s my fault and that I totally deserved it all.  The physical, emotional and verbal abuse. The neglect.  The sexual abuse.  The hitting.  The screaming.  The rejection.  The isolation. All my fault.  It is totally natural to blame me…for everything.

Right now, I’m going through a numb stage. I can’t feel much of anything…not good, not bad, not happy, not sad.  Well, I feel depressed, but that’s pretty much “normal” for me.  I just don’t feel pain or more sad than what is typical.  I think in the medical community, they call it “asystole”  or “flatline.”   I truly hate being in this state.  Hurting is so much better than not being able to feel.  Trust me.  It is.  And hurting is pretty horrid, so that should tell you something about how terrible it is not to be able to feel.

At first, it seems like a relief.  It feels like a needed break. An escape.  But the “escape” becomes a prison from which there is no exit.  You become a member of the living dead.  And that’s when numbness is a nightmare that far exceeds the horror of all the pain in the world.

If I was a better person, I wouldn’t be in this prison, would I?  If I was stronger, more intelligent, worthy.  But I’m not worthy.  I’m the reason I was abused and I’m the reason I can’t escape the aftereffects.  It must be me.  All us abused people out here can’t be wrong…right?

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