24 April 2007

Child Abuse



A friend of mine on care2 sent me the poem of Sarah which got me thinking about child abuse, then remembering my own experiences.

When I was in Hastings, Michigan for my great-aunt Elva's funeral, my dad complained to me about Ferrysburg, stating that he did not like that place because someone there had reported my parents for child abuse and he said they tried to take us away, but the Coast Guard intervened on my dad's behalf. I did not know before that this was the 2nd time. Appearantly, according to my dad, "they" tried to take us away when I was a toddler living in Detroit, Michigan.

Was I abused?

I am the adult child of an alcoholic and a military brat.

The Coast Guard had a saying..."If we wanted you to have a family, we would have issued you one." The Coast Guard taught how to kill, not how to be a good spouse or a good parent.

And as for the alcohol, that just created a Dr. Jeckyl/Mr. Hyde. I loved my dad when he was Dr. Jeckyl. Mr. Hyde was a terror.

Appearantly, according to my paternal grandmother, it was something that ran in our family. Her father was an alcoholic. She also told me that when my dad's father and she was married, my dad's dad hit her. She told her mom, and her mom told her "you made your bed, now you lay in it", so she waited until he was asleep and beat him with some kind of wood. She said he never hit her again after that.

My dad's father died of heart disease when my dad was 7 years old, and my dad was responsible for financially supporting his family delivering papers in the morning and working at a store after school, so I know my dad's life as a child was not easy either.

When I was about 14, we had just come back to the states from Italy, and I was doing dishes with my paternal grandmother. I remember telling her that I never wanted to have kids because I did not want to be like my dad. She replied that just because my dad was an alcoholic would not mean I would be one. That was when she told me about her dad, and stated that she was not an alcoholic, which was true. Yet the cycle continued. Not with me. Some how, I did not get the "alcohol gene", but my grandmother was not an alcoholic either, yet it skipped a generation to my dad. That concerns me, since I really want to have children, fearing I will have a child who will inherit my father's alcoholism.

I am very fortunate that I had other adults in my life who cared about me, and I am very grateful for these people.

  • I will always remember the babysitter in Ferrysburg, Michigan, who gave me the little doll.
  • I will always remember the other babysitter in Ferrysburg, Michigan, who gave me the lifesize doll with the huge box of baby clothes, even though my mom did take the box of clothes away from me when my sister was born and dress my sister in the doll clothes.
  • I will always remember Mr. Bob Coobaugh (sp?) in Ferrysburg, Michigan, who used to weld my bike back together for me.
  • I will always remember Mrs. Ida May Thomas in Ferrysburg, Michigan, who taught Bible school from her trailer, and taught me how to crochet, played Scrabble with me, and paid attention to me.
  • I will always remember Paula's mom in Ferrysburg, Michigan, who used to give me taffy.
  • I will always remember Mr. Charles Shultz in Cape May, New Jersey, who gave me $50 for sweeping his storage so I could go to Walt Disney World with the rest of my Baptist Youth Fellowship group. He also made sure I ate every night, even though I was self concious of eating food that did not belong to me. I only had the $50 dollars I earned from Mr. Shultz to pay for admission into the park, which left only a few dollars for food or anything else I needed during the 3 days in Kissimee, Florida (this was when I was 12 years old), so I was very concious of my budget & everything else.

I realize the list can go on for quite a while. I want to thank all the people who cared about me along the path of growing up. Thank you.

35 comments:

  1. You know no one has a perfect childhood. There is no perfect way or school to teach someone how to be a parent. There comes a time when you can be a victim or just live your life. Learn from what may or may not of happened and grow from that and become a better person. Blaming your parents does not seem to be the best way of growing. You have mentioned your family before and it is starting to seem that you want to blame others for everything in your life. If you must ask the question "was I abused" trust me you weren't. You would know if you were and sometimes you need to grow up. It is much better to be a positve happy person then only have people around because they feel sorry for you.

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  2. I agree completely with anonymous. You need to live your best life now, and forget about the past, or at least let it go. You can not change what has happened but learn from it.

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  3. I think you both misunderstand. I do not feel sorry for myself.

    And how can I trust an anonymous person saying I was never abused as a child? The question was retorical when I asked if I was ever abused as a child. The answer is obviously yes.

    This is to shed light on child abuse, and to hopefully prevent child abuse in future generations.

    It is also to let those who have been abused, to know they are not alone, and it is not their fault.

    And, I took the opportunity to thank people who came into my life and made a difference. It is to show that we can all make a difference in a child's life, even if that child does not share our DNA.

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  4. Just keep in mind just because your parents love you does not mean they have to like you. I have the feeling they just don't like you. If you think you are helping people in need from your blog you are just kidding yourself. Get out there and volunteer if you feel you can help people. Get off you ASS once in awhile.

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  5. Anonymous, where in my blog did I say my parents love me?

    How do you know what my parents feel?

    For "anonymous", it seems to me that you are taking this post very personally.

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  6. Are you saying they don't love you? I have read some previous blogs from you and it appears they love you. Why would you invite them to your wedding, if they didn't love you? Something doesn't add up Helen. I do take it personally when someone claims to be abused because they want people to feel sorry for them. If your life was so bad growing up, why would you keep going back for more. I believe there is a time in everyones life when they need to look inside themselves and I think it is long overdue for you Miss Helen Irene. Take it from me seeing as I have a few years on you that life is what you make of it.

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  7. Anonymous, I never said I did not love my parents. A child can be abused and still love his/her parents. It happens every day.

    I do not presume to know how my parents feel. So I am not saying they do or don't love me, nor am I saying they do or don't like me. If you are the same anonymous, you presumed that, or knew it from a source other than me.

    I invited my parents to my wedding because they are my parents. And my parents, if they did not like me, had the option of not attending.

    Through Alateen & ACoA, I have come a long way in confronting the abuse I experienced as a child. I would recommend ACoA to any adult child of an alcoholic, and Alateen to any teen of an alcoholic

    I have not asked anyone to feel sorry for me, nor do I want anyone to feel sorry for me.

    If I did not look inside myself, I would not be able to blog as honestly as I feel I do.

    The first rule of a house with abuse is that whatever happens in the family stays in the family. To end child abuse, we need to end the cycle of secrets.

    It is ok for a child who is being abused to talk to a teacher, a neighbor, a helpline, and for the child to know he/she will be believed.

    It is long past time we ended child abuse for good.

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  8. I feel it is very important to talk about abuse and make sure the child does not blame themselves. I do agree with you but I do not understand why you are so sensitive to what this other person or people are saying. You are entitled to your own oppinions and so are they. Keep up the honesty and try and keep an open mind. Do you have sibling that went through the same thing?

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  9. Thanks Jennifer.

    I agree that people leaving comments definitely have a right to their own opinions.

    I do not feel as though I am being "sensitive" to "anonymous". I am just replying, and want to clear up any potential misconceptions.

    I do have siblings. It is not uncommon in an alcoholic family for different children to take on different roles, just as it is not uncommon for children of certain birth orders to take on different roles.

    This is from
    http://www.recovery.org/acoa/whois.acoa.html :

    TYPES OF ADULT CHILDREN

    Most books published on the subject of Adult Children agree that certain
    personality types are common in dysfunctional families. Some of the books
    call the types by different names and not all of the types are found in
    every book.

    Some of the personality types are:

    FAMILY HERO - An achiever, usually (but not always) the oldest child. Often
    a workaholic who can identify other's needs and meet them, but is without an
    understanding of their own needs. This is often a child who uses their
    success to find a sense of belonging -- the one who shows the family is "all
    right," but who is unable to feel the benefit of his/her achievements. They
    feel like a fraud and are subject to depressions which they hide from those
    around them.

    THE RESCUER - Similar to the Family Hero, but without the visible success.
    The Rescuer finds those in needs, lets them move in or marries them or finds
    a job for them while supply other needs and is very understanding of the
    frequent betrayals. The rescuer has a deep seated self-hate that drives
    them to their role as a savior, because they know that anyone not already at
    the bottom of the barrel would have nothing to do with them. They tend to
    feel inadequate in their giving and unable to accept help for their own
    needs.

    THE MASCOT - Often a younger child who uses humor or other distracting
    behavior, such as being exceptional clumsy or always in trouble, to take the
    focus of the family away from the problems of the family dysfunction. If the
    parent is violently drunk, the Mascot may take the abuse to "save" the rest
    of the family, or may be able to crack a joke at the necessary moment to
    take everyone's mind off the pain of their reality.

    THE ADJUSTER - The one who is never bothered by what is happening; there is
    no reason to be excited because everyone had to lie with family problems.
    The child never becomes too attached to goal or a desire because they have
    learned to change their direction at any moment. They float, knowing
    something is wrong but coping, often successfully, with one chaotic
    situation after another by surrendering their identity to the needs of the
    moment.

    THE DOORMAT - The abused child who survives by lying down and letting others
    walk all over him/her, rather than risk an unpleasant or dangerous
    confrontation. This child is very understanding of the need someone else
    may have to injure him/her, but cannot identify his/her feelings about the
    abuse in the past or present.

    THE ACTING OUT CHILD or THE REBEL - This child is in action at the slightest
    provocation, whether as an heroic action to prevent abuse to someone else
    (by distracting the abuser) or to protect himself/herself with wildness.
    This is the child who is most visible to the outside world and who may adopt
    alcoholism, drug addiction or other compulsive behavior early in defiance of
    the family system.

    THE SCAPEGOAT or FAMILY JERK - This child takes the blame and shame for the
    actions of other family members by being the most visibly dysfunctional.
    This child serves the family by being sick or crazy to allow the other
    members of the family to ignore their own dysfunction. This is also the
    child who holds the family together -- the family rallies to help the family
    jerk. He/She learns to remain dysfunctional to continue receiving the
    little attention available in a dysfunctional home by making the family
    "okay" by being the focus of all that is "not okay" which all members of the
    family vaguely sense.

    THE BULLY - This child is usually the victim of physical, sexual and/or
    emotional abuse, who successfully makes the mental transition to stop being
    the victim by victimizing others. Often the Bully is genuinely remorseful
    for the pain and suffering caused to others, but will continue inflicting
    that abuse rather than face his/her own pain.

    THE LOST CHILD - Often a younger (or the youngest) child, this personality
    type has learned to stay out of the way, not make his/her wants known and to
    expect nothing. They avoid feeling by denying that they have feelings. They
    adopt whatever behavior will allow them to stay invisible within the family,
    at work, at school or in a relationship. This is the child who can assume
    whatever personality those around him/her find least threatening.

    THE LAST HOPE - Similar to the Lost Child, the Last Hope is the caretaker
    for the family when all other members have become unable to continue their
    roles. Often the Last Child is raised on comments like "You'll never hurt
    me like so-and-so." These children may work themselves to death trying to
    do "what's right" for blood relations or adopted families, no matter what
    the expense to their own life.

    Each of the personality types has special needs in Recovery, and each type
    can recover if they are willing to take the risk in believing they can
    change and heal.

    Because the personalities of the family are mangled, the character traits of
    the children can be equally blurred. An Adult Child may have several of the
    above characteristics at one time, or may play a different role within the
    family at different ages or depending on who they are responding to.

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  10. poor me poor me pitty me if i cry enough people will notice me becouse what havei ever accomplished in my life so therfore i must blame someone else for my downfalls

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  11. LMAO

    Anonymous, that is really funny. Thanks for the comedy.

    Like I said earlier, I do not feel sorry for myself, and I am proud of my accomplishments.

    And if you are talking about yourself, I hope you find help for your self esteem. There are many self-help groups that may be able to help you.

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  12. I undertstand eveyone's point although some were more a little more irrational then others. I think child abuse is a touchy subject due to the fact people consider child abuse differently. For instance I am pro spanking as discipline. These days if you spank a child some say thats considered child abuse, and I disagree. So were you spanked, and you're upset because you were spanked and maybe never understood why therefore you consider yourself abused?

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  13. Anonymous -- I agree that individual people see corporal punishment differently. Also, individuals define child abuse differently.

    The legal definition here in the U.S. of what is child abuse is according to http://www.dorightbykids.org/catList15/cat/What+is+the+legal+definition+of+child+abuse+and+neglect.html :

    "Physical Abuse:

    Physical abuse occurs when a parent (or person legally responsible) commits a physical act (i.e. punching, beating, shaking, throwing, kicking, biting, burning) which causes serious physical injury to a child. Although the injury is not an accident, the parent or caretaker may not have intended to hurt the child. The injury often results from out of control rage and anger, which can lead to over-discipline or physical punishment that is inappropriate to the child’s age or condition. If a resulting injury is not considered serious, it may be considered a form of neglect.

    Neglect:

    Different kinds of neglect may result from things that a parent/caretaker does, as well as things that a parent/caretaker doesn’t do.

    Things that a parent does: Neglect occurs when a parent/caretaker does something to the child that results in physical, mental, or emotional harm; when a parent causes physical injuries which are harmful to the child, but are not as medically serious as those that would meet the definition of physical abuse; and when a parent misuses drugs or alcohol in a way that harms the child physically or emotionally.
    Things that a parent doesn’t do: Neglect occurs when a child is harmed physically, mentally or emotionally because a parent/caretaker fails to provide a minimal level of care for the child’s basic needs. Poverty, however, is not the same as neglect. "

    That is how I define child abuse & neglect. This blog was not about me dissing my parents. It was about child abuse, and helping children who are in abusive situations now. Notice in the blog, I did not get into any specifics of what happened to me, though I could have, nor did I talk about the physical reminders I still have. My focus was, and still is, helping today's children.

    It is not uncommon for a child to believe something is wrong with themselves when the child is being abused, and for the child to feel alone. I want the children to know they are not alone, and that it is not their fault, and that they will be believed.

    I also wanted to make it clear that anyone can make a difference in an abused child's life. We can all make a difference.

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  14. Helen you are dissing your parents by announcing that you were abused. What else would you consider that praise? I don't mean to be rude but when you state something negative about anyone it's dissing them. You disagree with the Gov't all the time, and now you find something you agree with them! Very Interesting. By reading your Blog, it seems to me that the you don't care much for the Gov't of their beliefs, so why now?

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  15. Hi, my name is Julie I am Helen's sister. I decided to go on and read her bog, and I have to say there is quite a "live" discussion going on here (smile). I have to say I think Child Abuse is a very serious matter, that should always be made aware of, and it's a shame it even happens! Kids weren't asked to be born so unless you truly want them and are willing to be good parents, if not then you should give them up for adoption so people that will take care of them can adopt them and give those children a chance. I guess most people don't have enough common sense to realize that .It all says it in the song when Alyssa Lies!! I don't recall Helen being abused, but then again we have different memories of our childhood. Helen is like 7 years older then me .I asked my brother and he doesn't remember it either but then again as I said "who knows" I'm not calling Helen a liar or anything I just couldn't see my dad abusing any of the kids. My mom and dad fought all the time, and still do. But I don't recall the kids ever being pulled into it unless it was for something we deserved to be disciplined for. My brother and I must be fortunate not to have the same memories is all (smile) I have two children and I would trust them with my parents though, So to ease everyone’s mind off the focus of my parents, and back on the topic. I understand Helen's feelings about Child abuse, for children are innocent and learn from our teachings we need to remember that, and remember the children are our hope for a better future!

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  16. Thanks Julie and Tammy for your comments.

    Tammy, I do not disagree with everything the U.S. government does. When I see something I believe needs to change, I write about it.

    I fail to see what Child Abuse has to do with the U.S. government though.

    I think Child Abuse is an issue involving everyone, and we should all get involved despite the government.

    It is true that my sister Julie does have 2 gorgeous sons. And my dad admits he is a much better grandfather than he was a father. I am very happy about that.

    What my sister may not recall is the phone call she made to me when she was a teen, and I was living in Texas. She said that my mom was beating her.

    I called my mom and told her to stop beating my sister, but appearantly, that call made the situation worse, and my sister was very angry with me.

    Then my dad was angry with me because according to my dad, my sister called child protective services or something like that, and he told me that I was the one who told her to make the phone call.

    So appearantly, there was some kind of family counceling. This is only hearsay as they were in Ohio and I was in Texas at the time.

    I was going to counceling myself in Texas.

    Some things I do need to apologize to my sister for...

    I was the older sister. I did my best to protect my sister. But then when I was 19, I got married, and I quit protecting her. I was not there for her.

    And when she was a baby, it was not her fault that my stuff was taken away from me and given to her, though to be honest, I did resent her for it. It was not her fault. She was just a baby.

    My parents would tell me that everything in the house belonged to them, so if someone else gave me something, they had the right to take it away from me and do whatever they wanted with it. That was not my siblings fault.

    If my sister did something wrong, she would tell my parents that we taught her to do whatever it was, so we would get beat. That was not my sister's fault either. She was a kid, and my parents should have known better.

    When I would complain to my dad how unfair that was, he would respond, "that is part of being the oldest".

    Like I have said before, my father did not have an easy childhood. Child abuse is usually a family cycle...one that needs to be broken.

    We all can make a difference.

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  17. Helen is correct about my mother, she did beat me, but I will admit I wasn't an easy teen to deal with, I was the rebel child. I started some of the fights with my mother but it still was no reason to hit me. I never called child services on my mother, I went to youth counseling where my mother denied everything. It ended though when my brother came home from being on leave and threatened my mother that she was to never touch me again, and she didn't. So yes I guess I see Helens point on alot of things. My dad has never laid a hand on me though, in fact there were plenty times he should of disciplined me and never did. Regardless I think I turned out pretty OK, and I do have two wonderful boys whom I love very much, that i guard with my life, and make sure that as lond as I can help it, nothing bad will happen to them like that! I'm sorry Helen for your feelings. I don't really blame anything on our parents. I believe they became parents before they were truly ready, and couldn't handle it! Thats why I feel its a shame that people stat having kids at such a young age.

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  18. Julie, being 7 years, 9 months, 20 days older than you, and being different in the "family chain", it is not unusual to have different childhood experiences. You were born 2 lbs, 10 ounces, and born premature, and you were born after mom had previously had a miscarriage. The doctors told Mom & Dad that you would die. But you lived. And dad claimed at that time that you were the reason the "Count curse" was broken. He believed he was still alive because of your will to live. Before that, he believed the he was going to die when I was 7 years old, and had actually planned on it.

    Dad retired from the Coast Guard around the time I was 18.

    Also, after I left home, mom & dad both claim that dad quit drinking.

    So our childhoods were different.

    Plus, when I was home, we took a lot of the punishment for anything you did, simply because we were older. This was not your fault, and I do not blame you. One child should not have to be responsible for another child.

    I have yet to meet anyone who is totally prepared to be a parent.

    I was not a "wild child". If I recall correctly, you used to call me a "geek". I tried very hard to please mom & dad when I was a kid. I did not drink. I did not smoke. I did not even have my first boyfriend until I was 18.

    I remember one time in Italy, the family was going home from the base. Dad had been drinking, which was not uncommon on base in Italy since they kept beer stocked in the cooler in the mess hall.

    For no reason whatsoever that I know of, Dad pulled over and told me to get out of the car (we were on the mile road that led to the base from the main road), so I got out of the car. Then Dad yelled at me for getting out of the car like he told me to, and ordered me to get back into the car. Only that time, I did not move. So he got out of the car and continuously hit me in the head and the face. Still, I did not move...until Mom, who had broken down in tears pleaded for me to please get back in the car. I saw mom crying, which made me cry, so I got back into the car. Then Dad drove home and acted like nothing had happened.

    Through counceling, I learned that the reason dad did what he did was the alcohol. I did nothing to deserve it.

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  19. By the way, I reread my sister's statement...my parents were not that young when I was born.

    When I was born, my mom was 3 months away from being 22 years old, and my dad was 3 months away from being 24 years old.

    My dad's biological father died when my dad was 7 years old, so my dad stepped in as "man of the house" then and delivered newspapers in the morning & worked in a grocery store after school (remember this was 1947) while his mom stayed home taking care of a 2 year old boy and baby girl.

    So my dad understood, long before I was born, what was involved in raising children.

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  20. do not believe everything you read or hear some people just like the attention i have tried hard not to ever respond to these blogs but since she felt to put my pictire in them and insult my family i feal a need unlike my only one year older sister i have a job and went to school i do not spend all my time on the internet and becoming an expert on a subject by reading an article on it we grew up upper lower class our mom did not speak english hardly did she mention she never had bruises, never went to the hospital never had stitches never locked in anything got to go to disney world got to go on the bozo the clown tv show some people dwell on the glass is half empty and my siter is one i recomend you just ignore the blog and this site so she has to go outside get some excercise and LIVE LIFE

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  21. John, actually, you are 1 year, 7 months, 28 days younger than I am.

    Mom has had bruises, and a piece of glass stuck in her knee from Dad throwing a glass of iced tea.

    Mom was also in the hospital when I was a toddler.

    I already mentioned my trip to Disney. Mom and Dad did not pay for any of it. That was the kindness of Mr. Shultz.

    The trip to Kalamazoo to be on Bozo, Mom & Dad did not pay for either. That was the kindness of my elementary school teacher.

    We got free lunches in elementary school because we were below the poverty level. That is how we got on the free lunch program.

    But money, or lack of it, has nothing to do with child abuse as far as I am concerned. A child of a billionaire can be just as abused as a homeless kid.

    John, we have issues that have nothing to do with my blog, like you tearing up my apartment, and then laughing about it. I was 19 years old when I got my first apartment.

    The same with my car. You ran it into the ground, and then said it was the car's fault.

    I have never been reimbursed by you, and I have never even received an apology.

    I know you do not like this subject because you are abusive yourself. No grown son, in a healthy world, should threaten to hit his mother, let alone actually hit her, especially if he used to compete in Tae Kwan Do competitions, and was military trained.

    If you do not like what I am posting, then try to prove me wrong with your own actions. Don't continue the cycle of abuse.

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  22. john her brother not by choiceMonday, April 30, 2007 5:48:00 PM

    you claimed you were abused, not mom. we got reduced lunches not free. anyone that actually thinks that you are not a derainged hipocrite must be in denial or belong to the same sci-fi computer geek i live in a fantasy fan club and strongly suggest intreatment at a good instatution that can help you with your delusions have a good earthdate and na nu nanu or live long and prosper or whatever you you say now a days

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  23. john her brother not by choiceMonday, April 30, 2007 5:49:00 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  24. your sibling who is tired of your fantasyMonday, April 30, 2007 7:31:00 PM

    by the way if you accuse me of being abusive or anything criminal or degrating of charachter the first amendment gives you that right but 7 out of 12 in the jury can hold you accountable for everything you accuse everyone of you do not want to go BACK to jail or HAVE to get a job FOR LIABLE so get help maybe regression therapy before you are on the woman behind bars web sight or worse

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  25. LOL

    This is getting to be very amusing.

    Fact is, we did get free lunches until Dad made 1st class and got a pay increase, then we were still on a lunch program for a reduced fee.

    The subject is child abuse. It seems to have struck a cord with my brother.

    This is probably why so many children who have been abused are afraid to come forward.

    Thanks John for demonstrating my point.

    Please, if you are being abused, obviously, you may already know that not talking about what happens in the family is the number 1 rule.

    And you may have people like my brother in your family that you may be afraid of.

    Trust me on this...

    My brother is completely unable to hurt me in any way anymore. And if you go call the hotline number and get help, you will see that your family will not be able to harm you any more either.

    Yes, your family will probably lie to hide the truth, as you have witnessed here, but there will also be people like me who will believe you.

    So please, whatever you do...do not give up.

    Keep telling someone until you are believed and receive the help you need.

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  26. Helen, you said, "A child can be abused and still love his/her parents. It happens every day." This is so true.

    I am a survivor of child abuse myself, and I loved my abusive parent very much. I hated what they did to me, but I loved them. There's a big difference between the two, in my opinion.

    Keep writing, Helen. Keep talking about it. Silence is not golden, even though people who haven't been through what we've been through often can't and don't understand the feelings and thoughts we have about our experiences...

    Sincerely,
    Wolf Singer

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  27. Thank you so very much Wolf Singer. I really appreciate your comment.:-)

    I am also very sorry that you know know about child abuse first hand. I hope one day, no child will suffer abuse.

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  28. Helen,

    Don't let your brother get to you and I am glad you are taking it in stride. Your sister seems a little more sensitive and yes she may have different memories that make it hard for her to believe. Don't get upset with her for that it is a hard thing to believe but your brother seems very upset by this. Sometimes families need to go through some storms to get closer in the end. Don't wait to mend the fences because regret and guilt are the two worst feelings. I hope things have changed for you.

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  29. Thanks Allison for your comment.

    I do not feel any regret or guilt as far as my biological family is concerned.

    I have a wonderful life now with my husband and 3 cats.

    The subject of this blog was Child Abuse.

    One of the main rules in an abusive home is not to talk about what happens (or happened) in the home. I broke that rule. Hence, the reaction from biological family members.

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  30. It didn't sound to me like your sister was upset that you broke the "rule", it sounded to me as if she just didn't agree with the fact that you were abused. Your brother on the other hand just showed pure hostility. So I take it you and your brother do not get along! Your sister seems as if she keeps a distance, so what about your brother and sister? Do they get along with each other? Do they have the same feeling towards your family that you do? I find it quite sad that you call them your biological family. Your distancing yourself by doing so and I find that disresprctful towards your parents to call them your biological family the way you refer them in such a manner. I am also from a disfunctional family, but I wouldn't trade them for the world. I don't believe there is a such thing as a perfect family, so I focus on the good times and stay focused on the positive and remain greatful for having them in my life no matter how disfunctional they may seem, They're mine. Helen you may regret your actions some day, just something to think about.

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  31. so who exactly abused you and how

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  32. Aimee, the subject of this blog is Child Abuse. If I am able to help just one child, it is all worth it.

    I have a biological family and a non-biological family. My non-biological family has never hit, punched, kicked, whipped, or assaulted me in any way.

    I do not regret writing the blog about child abuse. It is a topic that needs, in my opinion, to be taken out of the closet and highlighted.

    And as I previously wrote, we can all make a difference.

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  33. The deletions were because they were double posts. I just deleted the duplicates, not the original comments.

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  34. Child Abuse is a serious topic, I don't believe you family is trying to hide anything it sunds as if they just don't understand? It sounds to me as if you each have a different memory of your childhood, as if you were from different families. I'm sorry if you were or abused or felt as if you were. I don't know you to make that determination but I will admit, it's sad.

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  35. Aimee, I agree that child abuse is a serious subject.

    I think this shows why child abuse is so difficult to end...the reason being denial.

    As many people who been drunk may know, alcohol has been known to impair memory. I don't know how it happened, but of all my siblings, I was the only one who never got drunk except for the case when I was a toddler and drank from the glass of rum my dad had on the coffee table. I do not remember it...I only know from my dad telling me the story. He laughed about it.

    That was the only time I have ever been drunk that I know. I say "that I know" because it is possible there could have been another time when I was a toddler that I do not recall.

    Being an abused child does not mean there were no happy times in my childhood. That was what made it so confusing for me. That is part of the disfunction of an alcoholic home. I think of it as the Dr. Jeckyl/Mr. Hyde syndrome. Dr. Jeckyl is wonderful and loving. Mr. Hyde is a living terror.

    So when a child claims to be abused, but people see the Dr. Jeckyl, it is not uncommon for the child not to receive the help that child may need, because Mr. Hyde is usually not a public figure.

    One case in point that has recently made news is Mel Gibson. When he was drunk, he said some things I am sure he would not have said if he was sober. I do applaud Mel Gibson though for taking responsibility for his words and actions.

    In my family, I was told that a person is not going to apologize for what that person does not recall doing. So no responsibility is taken. And alcohol is an easy scape goat.

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