Thursday, November 24, 2011


I had been wondering what to call this post and I found myself  muttering 'oh God'  and I guess that is rather appropriate considering what I want to talk about.

Most often I can let this sort of thing go but today I saw a rather twee little postcard on Facebook which was basically saying that each of us needs to be thankful to God for everything that we have.  This sort of twaddle really annoys me. 

What exactly is a child sex slave supposed to be grateful for? What exactly is a person who is being tortured on a daily basis supposed to be grateful for? What were the victims of the Holocaust supposed to be grateful for? What are the starving and brutalised children of Africa supposed to be grateful for?

I am well aware that gratitude for what one has is a big part of being happy. In my recovery it plays a big part. However that is far from saying that as a child I ought to have been grateful! There was no God who intervened and saved me! Would you tell a parent who had just watched their child die in agony from some dreadful disease that they need to be grateful?

The people who say this nonsense do so for their own benefit and they seem to have no idea, and often seem not to care at all, how offensive their words are. Of course if one expresses one's opinion to them it is just confirmation to them that one is angry with God or that there is something wrong with one!  No matter what way one chooses to deal with it it just gives ammunition to the other. And guess what that feels like? Guess what abusers do? Yes you've got it.

I always have and I always will support any persons right to believe any damn thing that they want to believe. If it makes them live a better life, and by that I mean a happier life and a life in which they treat others well, then I will keep my mouth shut. However when they start spouting their beliefs as fact when those beliefs are harmful to others I will not keep my mouth shut.

One would think that it is only those who have not suffered greatly that would say such a thing. Unfortunately, this is not so. Abusers say such things for obvious reasons. However abuse survivors  also say such things when they are stuck in denial. 

I think this is the major problem with a belief in a supreme being that cares for us individually. In order to believe it we have to believe that somehow or other the terrible wicked and evil things that happen to people, most especially to children, are somehow just all part of some plan that we cannot possibly understand. This is denial run riot and makes one appear stupid at best and downright wicked at worst.

Let's leave alone the terrible evil that people deliver upon other people. What about those poor people that are born with terrible diseases and disfigurements.  Of those who live very short pain filled lives. And don't you dare tell me that it is so they can learn!

As an individual I have learned a great deal from my early life experiences but I know many many others who did not because they did not survive or they have become bitter and twisted people who treat other people badly.  I do not take credit at all for the way I have turned out. Everything I have done and everything I still do is to avoid pain and there is nothing heroic in that. It is just common sense. I therefore have never hated. Although I am not sure that that was a choice. I have never really wanted to hurt another or to have another suffer. It just never made any sense to me. It never crossed my mind that the suffering of somebody else would ease mine. Perhaps if I had seen that as possible I may well have hated.  The fact that I make the best of my life today does not make me a saint nor especially brave nor especially intelligent or especially anything. It is just common sense.

The one really big reason that I am able to enjoy my life today regardless of my disease and the 24 7 pain is because my present state is so much more preferable to my previous mental emotional and spiritual agony.  my physical difficulties are very much easier to deal with.  I can assure you that when I was in so much agonising turmoil I was not happy nor grateful.

I consider myself very fortunate. I have absolutely no idea why I am in the position I am in today. I do not believe that I was chosen to be in the position I am today so that I could lead others toward the light!!!  How crass!

I CHOOSE  to share my thoughts and feelings about my life. When I first started to do so I did it purely for my own sake. I had no idea of the effect it was going to have upon other survivors. In fact I didn't even consider what might happen if my words were read. Now of course I do know and I would be a liar if I did not say that this colours in some way what I do write.  I am not sure how it does although I am conscious of the fact that on days when I do feel down and fed up I tend to avoid writing about it because it makes me feel ashamed. This is partly because I was not allowed to express my emotions and also because of other people's expectations of me even today.  It is also of course my own expectations of me. I feel so profoundly grateful to not be the person I used to be that even I feel it is wrong of me to have days when I feel like quitting!

I do not know how to make any clearer than with these words: if I knew that I was going to return to the Colin I used to be, I would shoot myself or find some other way of ending my life. I would never ever ever want to be that person again. And I most certainly would not want to be a child ever again. Absolutely no way would I ever be that vulnerable again.

I do of course choose to concentrate on my good fortune. My incredibly loving and patient husband, my dogs, my friends and my talents. This does not mean I do not have bad days. Only a fool would expect to not have bad days.  There are days when I feel the terror of being a child come washing over me. There are mornings I awake and the first thing I feel is fear and I have to tell myself  that I am not at the family home any more and that there is no school today!  There is nothing I can do about this.  PTSD is like that.  One can be perfectly fine one-minute and the next not be.

I often think that those who are not close to survivors and are not survivors themselves have absolutely no idea at all how it affects us.  My ability to form relationships was severely retarded so I grew up basically without friends. I found myself in situations which only heaped more pain upon myself and unfortunately I also caused pain to others because I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. When one is totally shut off from one's feelings one has no idea of boundaries. I understand why people reacted to me the way that they did and why new friendships turned into new rejections. I have been lucky and that I do have 2 very long term friends, John and my dear friend Judy whom I have known since 1979 and now also a few others who came into my life during my healing process. Just because I can see how all those others went by the wayside does not mean it did not hurt and does still  hurt at times. I also very much regret that I cannot explain to these people why I was the way that I was and also make amends to those that I hurt because of it.

Anyway, I am fairly certain that many survivors reading this will not need me to explain why I find it offensive when told that even someone living in absolute terror and suffering have reason to be grateful to the Big Sky Daddy!

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