The problem with a mental illness being derived by a set of certain symptoms, is that divergence from the norm is defined subjectively.
Illegitimacy was in my blood, and it had tainted me. By the circumstances of my birth my honour was smirched, I was already a broken woman.
Achievement and failure exist only as a construct, a way to judge others and my sickness, my health and my worth has nothing to do with either.
I googled ‘famous people who have borderline’ but I shouldn’t have. Amy Winehouse, Marilyn Monroe, Britney Spears. All touted as hysterical, unstable women.
This world built me without boundaries, brought me up to accept authority, to obey and to work in the system. I was preprogrammed to play my docile part.
But the loss of religion, shame and guilt left me without morals. Quite by chance, I found that I was amoral by choice.
Similarly if you experience insecure attachment as a child, all other things being equal, your mind will default to attach insecurely as an adult.
Yet emotional abuse is incredibly damaging, perhaps in part because it cannot be recognised and dealt with in the same way. Emotional abuse gets swept under the carpet because it is supported and perpetuated by society as a whole.
When my self esteem was low, my relationships were abusive. Yet I always assumed that when my self-esteem was higher that my relationships would be healthy.
We are programmed as human beings with a biological reaction called ‘disgust’ and as a society, have reinforced this through any number of mechanisms to be able to live together. It’s part of the reason why so many stories of abuse remain untold and why many abusers can go on abusing, sometimes over decades. Abusees become disgusting by their association to abuse. Their stories are often doubted, shunned or dismissed as inconsequential.
Agency was conspicuous by its absence in my upbringing. My adoptive mother neither trusted in me, nor in my agency and this might be regarded by many as wise. After all what can a child know about the consequences of their decisions?
Twenty years later those two people are now strangers and our story is one of the human condition, of love and tragedy. It was inevitable. And so I simply sigh, close the book and move on.
My thumbs are hurting and my past me is whispering in my ear. She’s saying to me, watch out, danger is coming. Rejection is coming. Conflict is coming.
But although I drifted aimlessly on the open seas, buffeted by the storms I conjured myself from my grief, I also found that had the tools to fashion an oar.
Those films which make you cry tap into your deepest longings. To be loved, to be the rescued child, to be the winner. We’ve all of us gone through trauma.
Take responsibility for your feelings. You are in charge of them. But that’s difficult. Because we need to feel angry. We’re allowed to feel angry.
My family was not one I was born to, it was one I made and continue to make on a daily basis. My family is a group of people who I trust and whose support I use to empower myself to grow in this world. I have relatives of course, but they are not who I consider my family.
If I enable a lie, it will take away a piece of me. Sometimes I think I am driven by sensationalism – a hangover of my desire for attention. That’s a part of it (and that’s the truth). But my experimentation with life, my experience, is my own way of determining what makes me happy outside of what society tells me makes me happy, and what makes me, me.
The most useful tool I’ve discovered on our life journey is compassionate honesty. It heals so many wounds. This month has given me the chance to compassionately and honestly re-examine the relationship between my adopted Mother and I, to see whether the wound has healed between us. But my mother continues to want to play the game of ‘who-is-right-and-wrong’, and … Read More
Discover the truth about your own motivations. Then discover that even your truth is not constant and be able to accept this. Truth changes, which means that to be a seeker is not a destination, but a never ending path (and then you die).
It is always a matter of self-protection, or indeed what we believe to be self-protection… which is why stopping playing it seems counter intuitive.
If consent cannot happen without the ability to make a free and informed choice, then chances are we do not give our consent freely about anything at all.
Once upon a time someone you loved told you that you were not perfect. You internalized it and it became your belief. And so you acted accordingly.
I cannot admit I am magnificent in public, or even in private, because doing so would turn me into a person I myself dislike. Someone big headed and cocky. Someone society would hate.
There’s a rumour going round that goes something like this. You won’t truly be loved by another until you love yourself. It’s been repeated in various guises by many over the years and notably several Hollywood actresses. They seem – unsurprisingly – to be the most in need for a little self love. Love yourself first and everything else falls … Read More
I’m no longer sorry I didn’t get drunk in Dublin all those years ago. I’m only sorry I didn’t realise earlier that my sorrow, was a waste of time.