My Mental Health Journey 1
When I was a little girl, I thought like a little girl. I acted like a little girl. I was treated as A. Little. Girl…. I was being raised by a single mom, who had 4 other children and no help. She did what she could, but understandably, it was too much. She moved to Virginia. We kids were placed in the system.
My siblings and I were taken in by this couple, who couldn’t have children. At that time, I didn’t know the underlying secrets of that fact. Soon after we were rerooted to this new life, still unsettled mind you, they got pregnant. Not once but twice. In two years, this couple went from no children to eight.
None of us felt our lives made sense. I did what was expected of me, and yet us “older kids” were raised differently than the younger ones. I noticed it, early on..I was in elementary school when I “knew” the insanity of our departure from that house was going to be dramatic and ugly. The saddest part was my inability to do anything to prevent it.
As we grew, I was reprimanded and disciplined. Much like a dictatorship, there was no other way. I had no voice. I had no options, opinions, or alternatives. That’s exactly how things were operated. I had zero opportunity to express what I felt. There wasn’t even a system to teach me what any of it was or how to regulate it. They didn’t allow such individuality.
As I got older, my numerical number increased, but my maturity didn’t. I didn’t experience that part of life which establishes and nourishes maturity! Why wasn’t I close to my parents? Why weren’t they introducing me to new concepts? Why weren’t they encouraging me to try?? Why didn’t they understand that criticism wasn’t a successful way to develop confidence while learning a skill. I was condemned for not cooking, as if I had no initiative.
I didn’t feel comfortable with trying to learn to cook. I didn’t feel comfortable being around my mother. I had absolutely no self confidence or desire to be alone with her, in the kitchen. The essential skills that we learn in the preteen years, I didn’t know. The life skills I needed by 21, I didn’t have until 5 years ago.
During my young adolescent years, I was emotionally abused because she resented me. I was abused because of the issues she carried. I was abused by a woman who didn’t love me… nor did she want me. She didn’t even like me. She didn’t like any of us 4 older kids… because we weren’t her own. She never said as much… but, actions speak so loud… and hers were a hell of a ton louder than the bullshit that escaped her mouth.
I saw this resentment so clearly, when everyone in the family worked so hard to keep hidden. It angered me. It hurt me. Year after year, the same lie continued. It just took on more of a recognizable shape. When I was in middle school, eighth grade, this darkness became verbal/emotional abuse. I suffered because two adults made a choice to adopt. I suffered because a grown woman chose not to face her own demons. She spent years lying to me about who she was. She spent years lying to herself.