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TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

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TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby Catlovermn » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:39 am

My three year old, Madi, has been crying a lot lately. When I asked her what was wrong, she said she hurt. When I asked her, she showed me. It was an area where she wouldn’t hurt except for sexual abuse. I know I have a history of sexual abuse, I just thought it started in junior high since I have no memory from before then. Apparently this is not the case and my therapist thinks it went on for much longer but I dissociated because it was too much for me to deal with. My problem is that I don’t know how to help her feel better. Has anyone else had this come up and have any advice for how to handle it? Also, does anyone have any advice for me as to how to process all this new information. Any suggestions would be helpful.
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby NyxX » Thu Dec 06, 2018 10:40 am

Please put proper trigger warnings on your posts this was extremely difficult and distressing to read and we were not prepared to be triggered so badly.
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby NyxX » Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:19 pm

OK I've calmed down a bit and am prepared to answer. Our earliest memory is at about age 6 and of SA we remember nothing before that in our life and in the memory we know what is about to happen so it wasn't the first time it happened. As Nixie is 4 1/2 and the only one of us who knows her age and is the one who holds all the pain it seems probable that it began then but I can't say for sure.

You help her the same way you would have helped her without this knowledge because to a part that young it doesn't really matter that we find what happened more horrific then a different kind of abuse, what matters is that they are in pain. So you find ways to help orientate them to the present and to make them feel safe in the now. You try to give them new happier experiences. And you make sure they know your feelings about what happened to them is not the same as your feelings for them.
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby Floralie » Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:31 pm

Dissociative amnesia doesn't come for nothing, so something must have happened to you when you were little. If it's too much for you to handle it has been sexual abuse, you can go around it as long as you need to.

Many EP-parts are stuck in their development and stay as young as they were when their trauma happened. But that is not ALWAYS the case. Maybe you created a 3 year old part when you were abused later on. Or if it makes it easier for you, you can think you had her for another reason in your system originally since you were 3, and when you were abused later on, for some reason she was there and experienced it too, as your 3 year old part. It doesn't matter what the story is in real history, as long as you can accept her, as a three year old, having hurt where she should not hurt. Just go around all too hard thing as long as you need, because there CAN be a different explanation for how things are with her now. You don't have to have a solid reason for why, it's enough it can be another reason.

What you can not go around or deny now that she is here telling she's hurting, is the fact she is 3 and hurting. You don't need to think about why she is, as long as you can accept her the way she is. She needs comfort, so you need to comfort her. You need to tell her she will never be hurt again, and that the pain will go away. She is safe now, and you believe her, and keep her safe. You can ask if she wants something. Where is she in the inner world? Is she in a bad place? You can tell she can be in a nicer place. Give her a blanket, a stuffed toy, ask if she is hungry or thirsty or cold, and help her with that. A three year old has a lot of magical thinking, you can tell her a story of a magic fairy, or a teddy bear, or a unicorn, or what ever she likes, who can sprinkle her with magical dust or create a safe ball around her or what ever, and that will keep her safe and help the pain go away. Tell her she is important and loved, just the way she is, with her hurt and everything. Help her with what she wants to be helped, don't push her to put away the hurt for you, if it's part of who she is, but help her with that, is she wants to.

Do all the things you would do with an actual 3 year old you would find wandering around somewhere alone, telling she's being hurt. Except in this case you don't have to go to a doctor or call police, or do anything that will scare her. What would you do with real 3 year girl that you found and have to look after? Do all those things, in that order. Take her to safe place, give her food and something to drink, take her to bath if she wants to, give her clothes, make sure she feels warm and fuzzy. She needs to be rescued first, after that you can think about anything else.
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby KawaiiKitty » Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:34 pm

My abuse also went on for longer then I originally thought . Some of the little's ones have trauma memories some don't. We let them talk to T if they need/want to (no pressure though) and just express their feelings as they need to. I know Summer and others host a lot of activities with them in the inner world that can encourage them to express emotion and pain (such as drawing, barbies, play doh)
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby SOHank » Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:03 pm

I feel like I’m repeating things above, but sometimes it helps to hear it from multiple people… :D

1. Comfort her as much as she allows.
2. Let her know things have changed and you are all okay now.
3. Let her know you care about her and will protect her.
4. Give her some positive experiences. (Coloring, books, cartoons, etc.)
5. Give her time.

Lou (4 y/o) held memories that Sunflower did not have access to. The above helped a lot.

As for addressing trauma, that’s what you have a T for. I did a lot to help Lou feel protected and appreciated. But addressing memories is where amateurs (like me) need to hand it off to the pros. :wink:

Keep in mind, there’s a reason you don’t remember all of what happened. DID helped you survive. Let your T help. If you seek answers, do it slowly and have a network of outside people there to help pick you up if needed. Generally, it seems like others inside will share with you as they think you can handle it.
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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby ItsJustUs » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:14 pm

I have nothing new to add, just agreeing with the rest.

Lilly (5.5) went through a really rough time where she suddenly realized something she hadn't thought about in a long time, she broke down into a sobbing, inconsolable mess. We did what others have suggested, we just comforted her. Told her that she's safe and she's loved. Our husband held her and rubbed her back and told her how much he loves her and won't let anyone hurt her ever again. She has coloring books and pencils, she has a few personalized pacifiers with clips, she has a stuffed wolf, Beastie, who brings her comfort. She has her own tumbler cup with a straw.

So, when she's feeling blue, we make sure the body is always surrounded by Lilly's things. It's comfort to her to know they are always there and we won't throw them away just because she "goes to sleep" for a while.

T should definitely know about this.

Good luck.

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Re: TW little remembers things I don’t and I need help

Postby fireheart » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:50 pm

I would suggest to focus on grounding, especially doing "mundane" tasks like the washing up or cooking. If you're able to stay present with that, it can be calming to engage in those types of distracting sensory experiences. It's super tough to learn more about the past.
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