As I get older I have realized how very deprived, neglected & abused I was when i was growing up. I’m not living in a happy situation, so maybe that’s why my past is suddenly coming back to haunt me. When I was growing up I thought I was middle class because my loud mouthed mother was always mouthing off about how we, the middle class, were getting the shaft. I realize now that we were poor. We had a roof over our heads but not much else. I never had fashionable clothes or anything like that. Everything was second hand, even Christmas presents.
My mother didn’t teach me stuff like what to do with my fingernails or toenails. I’ve had a manicure twice in my life & a pedicure once. During my first job someone told me to do something about my nails because they were all broken off & uneven. I made a joke about it, but really, I was embarrassed. I didn’t know how to file my nails.
I wasn’t taught how to cook or drive or even to tie my shoelaces. A teacher taught me how to do it in public school when I was in 6th grade. My mother would come visit & once asked me “When was the last time you flipped the mattress?” I said never. She went nuts on me. I said “You were the one who brought me up. You never told me i should flip my mattress” and she said “That’s something you should know!” Like we were all born with the natural instinct to flip our mattresses (especially when I was 4’10” ft tall & weighed 90 lbs — sure I was going to to go out & find someone to help me flip my mattress in my apartment, right?)
When I look back on my life, I just remember how bad it was. At the time though, I thought it was normal. As I got older & visited a friend’s house and saw they didn’t have ripped furniture and had roast meat for dinner & parents that didn’t ignore or constantly insult their kids, I started to realize things were not good for me.
Recently I told a high school friend about conditions when I was growing up — we had fleas in the house, not enough food, bad food, my teeth were all rotten, I had 1 pair if shoes for 4 years, etc, my friend asked why I didn’t say anything & I said, without even realizing I said “I didn’t want anyone to feel sorry for me.”
Because looking back on it, the thing I didn’t want most of all was for people to know how bad I had it, or how rotten my parents were because it was embarrassing.
They were the only parents I had. I didn’t want anyone to know that I mattered so little to them. I wanted my friends & the rest of the world to think that I mattered. If I stuck to it & just kept trying to go forward, I would one day find someone to love & care for me. I just had to keep going & not get stuck thinking about how bad things were. I had to look forward to the future & hope it would be better.
But now I don’t have a future anymore. There’s nothing to look forward to. I put myself through college over a period of 20 years, I paid my own bills, I escaped my parents even though my mother was evil & wouldn’t help me. She just kept yelling at me but never taught me how to live or gave me help so I could leave & live my own life. It was rough because I was so small that people were always trying to take advantage of me or overpower me, but I stood up for myself. But I can’t really stand up for myself anymore because there’s no place to go & no escaping my situation now.
I don’t think drugs will help me. I think that you have a mental immune system, the same way you have a physical immune system and one day, both immune systems just run out. And that’s when stuff comes back into your mind about your past. It’s like there were mental fences you maintained to keep that stuff contained, but the fences have rotted away and the memories can get out now & overrun you.