Our partner

what exactly is abuse

Open Discussions About Child Abuse

Moderator: Terry E.

Forum rules
You are entering a forum that contains discussions of abuse, some of which are explicit in nature. The topics discussed may be triggering to some people. Please be aware of this before entering this forum.

what exactly is abuse

Postby jaus tail » Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:21 pm

at times i think i put all blame of my life issues on my caregiver. i mean sure she had major issues. but is it not just me being lazy n putting all blame of my life on her. when does my responsibility toward my life n my mistakes start?

i dont talk with her now n think i'm being cruel to her by doing this.

its not like she was always toxic and unbearable.
exhausted
User avatar
jaus tail
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 4289
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:35 am
Local time: Wed Nov 25, 2020 2:33 am
Blog: View Blog (0)


ADVERTISEMENT

Re: what exactly is abuse

Postby avatar123 » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:32 am

I think to help establish the roles of you and your caretaker, you could take any issue, then list the things your caregiver could have done to improve the outcome. Then list what you could have done to improve the outcome. After you have the lists, you can evaluate how reasonable it would have been for those things to actually happen, in the context of the moment they were important.

You'll probably find a changing scale. When you were younger there was more the caregiver could do, when older there is more that you could do. Those things are also interrelated (especially the development of your ability to act as a function of issues growing up), so the answers can be complex, but I think listing them may help you to separate and consider them in your mind.

Another indicator is how you feel about the issue. Strong emotions such as anger or hurt may mean that it represents a threat to you in some way. So thinking carefully about what the threat was or is, can be helpful.

If you have someone to whom you can show this work, for objective feedback, that also can be really helpful. You could post here if you feel comfortable, or in a PM.

I know this is not much, but it may be a way to approach the issue and wrap your head around it. Or at least to get started, and have some way to understand how to feel about your caregiver.
avatar123
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 590
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:33 pm
Local time: Tue Nov 24, 2020 8:33 pm
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: what exactly is abuse

Postby jaus tail » Mon Jun 08, 2020 7:42 pm

thanks for the idea about list... here it is...

things my caregiver could've done differently:
1) not shout at me for using the toilet in evening
2) not shout at me for listening to music via headphones at night
3) not taunt at me for getting less grades in school
4) not force me to socialize with neighborhood kids
5) not guilt-trip me to hanging out with her almost every weekend (saturday + sunday)
6) not shout at me whenever i said 'no' for anything
7) not praise other children before me (a few times it's fine, but not always)
8.) not call me 'dumb' in front of others
9) not point out my flaws in front of others
10) not shunned me from the kitchen when i accompanied her in cooking

things i could've done differently
1) stand up for myself before my friends
2) not become an attention-seeker before others
3) not become blunt/rude just for sake of being blunt/rude
4) not be like a lost puppy before my bullies
exhausted
User avatar
jaus tail
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 4289
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:35 am
Local time: Wed Nov 25, 2020 2:33 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: what exactly is abuse

Postby avatar123 » Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:37 pm

Thanks Jaus. This is illuminating. From your list, it sounds like your caregiver had a somewhat co-dependent relationship with you. She needed you around and worked to drive down your self-esteem to help ensure that would happen. She may not have even been aware of the extent to which she was doing that. But then she may also have felt guilty about it, which would explain her forcing you to play with neighborhood kids. That would help to establish the illusion of normalcy.

I can relate to this because after my parents split and I remained with my father, he constantly complained that I had to work to help him, but he would not let me drive the car or own one. I cooked and cleaned for him and had no outside life. I rode my bicycle into my 20's. It took me a long time to understand that his constant criticism was meant to keep me around. It's hard to see this in the moment because the criticism makes it seem like you're not wanted, but in fact it keeps you from feeling you can leave.

Then in your list for yourself, you can see the results. You wish you were more assertive, standing up for yourself, not seeking attention from others to gain approval. All things that were suppressed in your personality by the environment of criticism in which your were raised.

Again I can relate. I've struggled with approval all my adult life, especially anger when it's unjustly withheld. I will probably never be free of that, but at least I am aware of it now.

As far as your original question about how to interact with your caretaker, It's probably true that it wasn't all bad between you. It wasn't with my father either. So it's not necessarily wrong to talk to her or see her, you just have to make sure that it's on your terms now, not hers.

So that means you continue things with her when she is respectful of you, but you curtail things when she starts up with the old behaviors again. She has to learn your relationship now depends on balance and respect, not criticism. I think if you can manage that, you'll feel better about yourself. You could also decide to cut off contact, but that would deprive you of the opportunity to establish and prove your worth in your eyes, and hers. But it's up to you, of course.

Also I think the next step for you would be to think about the emotions you feel when you review the lists. That' something you need to deal with and it would help you to be able articulate them, (and understand their source), both to yourself and to her.

Anyway I hope that helps. You've made a good start here, for what it's worth.
avatar123
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 590
Joined: Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:33 pm
Local time: Tue Nov 24, 2020 8:33 pm
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: what exactly is abuse

Postby jaus tail » Wed Jun 10, 2020 8:56 pm

Thanks Jaus. This is illuminating. From your list, it sounds like your caregiver had a somewhat co-dependent relationship with you. She needed you around and worked to drive down your self-esteem to help ensure that would happen.


yeah she didnt have anyone else around. her siblings and in-laws werent much helpful.

She may not have even been aware of the extent to which she was doing that. But then she may also have felt guilty about it, which would explain her forcing you to play with neighborhood kids. That would help to establish the illusion of normalcy.


yeah she didnt know i was getting bullied. she sort of wanted me to be like some typical college dude/jock. alpha male.

I can relate to this because after my parents split and I remained with my father, he constantly complained that I had to work to help him, but he would not let me drive the car or own one. I cooked and cleaned for him and had no outside life. I rode my bicycle into my 20's. It took me a long time to understand that his constant criticism was meant to keep me around. It's hard to see this in the moment because the criticism makes it seem like you're not wanted, but in fact it keeps you from feeling you can leave.


no matter whatever i did my caregiver wasnt happy, so i was always dependent on her.

Then in your list for yourself, you can see the results. You wish you were more assertive, standing up for yourself, not seeking attention from others to gain approval. All things that were suppressed in your personality by the environment of criticism in which your were raised.


i craved validation/friends/someone to not make fun of me.

Again I can relate. I've struggled with approval all my adult life, especially anger when it's unjustly withheld. I will probably never be free of that, but at least I am aware of it now.


an hour ago i was feeling bad for ignoring her. but then now i again recalled her past actions n it made me vow to not give her false hope.

As far as your original question about how to interact with your caretaker, It's probably true that it wasn't all bad between you. It wasn't with my father either. So it's not necessarily wrong to talk to her or see her, you just have to make sure that it's on your terms now, not hers.


it would be wrong of me to blame her entirely for my life decisions. and it wasnt that she was all bad.

So that means you continue things with her when she is respectful of you, but you curtail things when she starts up with the old behaviors again. She has to learn your relationship now depends on balance and respect, not criticism. I think if you can manage that, you'll feel better about yourself. You could also decide to cut off contact, but that would deprive you of the opportunity to establish and prove your worth in your eyes, and hers. But it's up to you, of course.


i wish i had this insight and courage to stand up to her at 22. eight years ago. life would've been better. now lost my mental balance because of a nervous breakdown.

Also I think the next step for you would be to think about the emotions you feel when you review the lists. That' something you need to deal with and it would help you to be able articulate them, (and understand their source), both to yourself and to her.

Anyway I hope that helps. You've made a good start here, for what it's worth.


the emotions that i feel when i articulate the list are sorrow and anger.
sorrow because the past could've been so much better. so much more beautiful. she was so intelligent and strong academically but never had a career. she regrets that.
sorrow at my own career. i was strong academically too and the breakdown ruined everything
anger that why did no relative help. wish someone had saved us.

it really could've been so much better... had i not have the breakdown (made toxic friends and craved their attention) i wouldn't have been so stuck in the past...m 30 now n feel old already...
exhausted
User avatar
jaus tail
Consumer 6
Consumer 6
 
Posts: 4289
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:35 am
Local time: Wed Nov 25, 2020 2:33 am
Blog: View Blog (0)


Return to Child Abuse Forum




  • Related articles
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests