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Is this emotional abuse?

Open Discussions About Child Abuse

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Is this emotional abuse?

Postby Kaioceane » Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:13 am

Hello, I'm a 19 year old girl who's has been resenting her parents lately and needs some answers.My parents have constantly made fun of me throughout my life and I was wondering if I was overacting.

The biggest thing here is that my parents constantly call me stupid. If I even make a tiny mistake, they act like I'm an idiot and go out of their way to prove me wrong and make me feel dumb. Like if I ask a question or ask for help, they act like I'm the dumbest person on the planet.They do this all the time and I've told my mom how much it hurts me but she continues to do it anyway. I try not to react to them when they do this because if I do they act like I'm unreasonable for being upset.

It hurts me a lot because I am sensitive, have low self esteem and also I'm pretty sure I have adhd and suffer academically because of this. When I was in first grade, I was supposed to be screened for adhd but my parents never took me for whatever reason.13 years later and I still have the same problems (doing homework assignment, focusing during lectures). I was supposed to be screened again recently but my father threw away the paperwork for it :/

I would go months on punishment without any tv or any electronic because I got a C on a report card for missing homework assignment despite getting good test grades.

My parents also make fun of me for being socially awkward. Throughout middle school and high school I had difficulty making friends because of anxiety , so my parents would tell me I was mean and basically laugh about me not having any instead of, you know, supporting me. It has gotten so bad to the point where my little sister has tagged along in making fun of me. Speaking of which, they always compare me to my little sister is and talk about how much better she is than me.

They also poke fun of physical insecurities that they know I'm super anxious about.

They (primarily my mom though) also love to go around and tell my personal business to other people. For instance my mom has told a few people, without my permission, that art inspiration am a lesbian. I told her not to this but she doesn't understand why I don't want her to do this.

Honestly, im dying to go back to university because I don't have to deal with them as much while I'm there. I feel bad about thinking these thoughts about them and would be terrified to know what they would think if they knew I was thinking this. I've only had a beating once and I had a pretty decent childhood (I got expensive gifts and my parents took me on trips to Disney world), so I feel a little guilty about it but my parents truly make me feel bad about myself.

I'm still pretty dependent on them because I'm too anxious to do anything by myself (drive, go to the store etc) and it sucks. What do you guys think? Am I overeating?
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Re: Is this emotional abuse?

Postby Alucard » Mon Aug 07, 2017 5:20 pm

You're not overreacting.

This behavior of your parents has killed your self esteem, your confidence, and when you can't find confidence in yourself being able to drive, go to stores, e.t.c is near impossible. I would know, I've been there because of how I was treated as a child. I still live at home and I'm 22. I've managed to find a group of supportive people and work as a counselor, but only two days a week so money is tight.

My home life was similar, but mix in drugs and alcohol and some physical abuse and intimidation. I'd often get called "stupid motherfker" or listen to my dad yelling in the living room about me, saying "I wish that little bitch would come in here and say something, I'll kick her ass" e.t.c. And yes, we have been in physical altercations because I don't put up with it anymore, I'm not going to put up with being verbally attacked. I was 18 when I finally snatched a belt out of his hand he was trying to use to intimidate me. I threw it in my room and he hasn't seen that belt since.

The only thing that has changed is that my dad is fairly sick now, and older, worn down from all the years of abuse on his body, and now my mother and I are stuck almost caring for him. His memory is gone, he doesn't eat, he has heart failure and liver problems. And we still get into it. My mother avoids conflict and so I've never felt I had anyone on my side or anyone to turn to. IN fact, I didn't know what I experienced as a child was abuse until about six months ago. That's how isolated I was from the world. My anxiety was severe at about 4 years old, and it hasn't been until this year that I've been able to build some confidence and reduce this anxiety. My mental health progressed from anxiety into anxiety and depression into anxiety and depression and dissociation into anxiety and depression and dissociation and hearing voices and having hallucinations and isolating myself in paranoid and delusions.

So to reach out is a good thing, because that's what I DIDN'T do. It builds up over time. Your anxiety has much more to do with your environment than it seems, and even the problems focusing. The environment you're in as a little kid can have a lot to do with how you develop mentally, so even if you don't remember specific things, it could contribute heavily to it being difficult to be attentive and present.

We get trapped from all sides. The schools in junior high and high school berate us for being quiet but then never ask WHY we're quiet. Our parents berate us for being quiet and don't CARE why we're quiet. And so we earn absolutely zero self-care techniques. We get this subconscious vibe that we're not important to anyone else, so why should be we important to ourselves? We get anxious because how do we know other people won't treat us this way as well? Are we being social 'correctly'? How could we know, we weren't really shown how to be treated or how to treat others.

Confidence is key here. It takes a lot of risks and anxiety, but building confidence reduces that overtime because we learn to trust and be trusted. A supportive community can be key here, which takes a lot of whirlwinds of anxiety to find. Being able to have a group of peers who have also gone through mental health struggles and abuse struggles is what has helped me over this past year and a half.

Anyway, I hope this made sense and that you are able to find something that works for you.
I like living in the world in my head because I'm in charge half the time.

https://mentaltruths.wordpress.com/
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Re: Is this emotional abuse?

Postby Terry E. » Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:14 am

The two biggies are self esteem and trust.

Damage those two and you are dragging a boat anchor as a young adult.

Alucard, hope things are moving forward, and you can see daylight up ahead.
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Re: Is this emotional abuse?

Postby mikey28627 » Sun Aug 13, 2017 4:58 pm

I am not good at writing anything, so please forgive me if it all sounds messed up. :oops:
We are almost mirror images.
First getting it out of the way, as Alucard has pointed out - you are not over-reacting. Their behavior fits the definition of emotional abuse completely. She has pretty much pointed out all the things I wanted to say - I just want to thank her for sharing her story; and thank you for reaching out.
Now, getting to the point I wanted to talk about - the 'mirror image' thing. I live with my parents too; and I resent every moment I have to spend with them. I feel violated when I am with either of my parents on the same room - because I know they WILL find something wrong with me - either my body, or what am I doing, or the clothes I am wearing, anything.
My oldest memories of abuse go back to early childhood - maybe around the age of 5 or 6. I won't go into details here (I can't stay focused).
My mom constantly keep making fun of me - it feels like she needs to feel like she is superior to me. Every time I mess up even a little bit - she goes all berserk, calling me stupid, worthless, good-for-nothing, cursing my family (dad's side) - and it is not the end of it. Death threats are so regular you might mistake our family as one belonging in a black comedy film. After all, telling someone you would grab their head, press it against kitchen tiles and keep smashing it with a mortar (whatever it called) doesn't sound exactly like 'normal' comedy, does it?
When I am upset about something - they get mad. When I am trying to avoid a conversation - they get mad. When I try something and fail - they get mad. When I try to point out something's wrong - they get mad. When I get angry - the get mad. After all, the best way to teach your child not be angry is by being angry! It works like magic! Also it grants you a +1 bonus for Charisma!
I can not remember if I was EVER allowed to make a decision. They dictate everything in my life - I mean EVERYTHING. (Am I capitalizing TOO MUCH?) Not going into details here, either.
All my life I have seen them care about my grades more than me. All because of their goddamn social image. ("They wouldn't blame you. They would blame us for not raising you properly.")
Now, behold!
At the age of 18, I have a very low self-esteem, severe anxiety (mostly a fear of messing up; thinking "someone would get f*king mad", resulting in me re-thinking everything multiple times), an inability to make decisions, severe impulsive behavior, OCD and maybe borderline personality disorder. Also add: "Social skills - Level 0".
Sorry, that doesn't look much like 'mirror images' now. Actually I wanted to write a lot more - but can not arrange those thoughts in my head right now. But remember, you have taken your first step in the path of self-healing by reaching out. The world is vast - one day you will be free from your abusers and start working on becoming the person you were meant to be! I hope life works out for you - and everyone else! And I am here if you want to talk...
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