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I am a survivor of abuse that started in my childhood. I suffer from CPTSD, which causes night terrors, debilitating anxiety, a constant feeling of worthlessness, among many other things. My belief is that it started in my childhood. I don’t have many memories of my childhood, especially to the age of 9 or 10. I only have snippets of things I have been told. My father once telling me that he came home one day to find me on the floor, my mother passed out, drunk. I was an infant. In my baby book, my first sentence is documented. “I’m sorry.” What does a baby have to be sorry for? To this day, I still say it, all the time, to the point people ask me to stop apologizing.
People usually have these great childhood memories of playing kick-the-can, kick ball, tag. My memories include being held against a garage wall, and pummeled with baseballs, basketballs and rocks, this caused my intense fear of balls to this day. Try explaining why you have to hide in your car at your sons’ T-ball games.
Or when the “clique” at Sunday school locked me in a bathroom at our camp, until my grandmother (she was the camp treasurer) found me hours later. It was dismissed as “just a prank”. Why? Was it because I lived in a different part of town and didn’t go to school with them? I never fit in, and at church, where I should have been embraced. This was made worse by my parents sending me, a little Baptist girl, to Catholic school. They were afraid of me being corrupted in public middle school. They threw me into the lion’s den. I had a target on my back for three years. To make things worse, I was the fat kid. I couldn’t eat like the few friends I did have because I was on a super strict diet. My mother was so proud that I was the youngest person at that time to go through this particular diet program. I was 12. She didn’t think it would affect me by wrapping me in plastic wrap for hours at a time, so I could sweat off the fat. Never good enough.
My childhood memories are the fear of being hit, worthlessness, easily startled, isolation, sleeping all the time, recurring nightmares that I can still remember as vividly as if they just happened.