Survivor Story: I Grew Up Witnessing Domestic Violence
Written by: BTSADV Survivor
I am the child of a domestic violence survivor. Growing up, I saw a lot of things that children should not have to. I witnessed verbal abuse, threats, physical violence to my mother, and so much more. I was embarrassed by this for so long and didn’t have the strength to speak up.
Night after night I feared for my mother’s life as well as mine, and I grew to resent my father, who tried to cure his issues with alcohol. Being so little while this was happening, I felt helpless and looked for protection from my mother, which she couldn’t give me. Sometimes I got mad at her and blamed everything on her.
Because of them, I was in a constant state of pain, and I was affected by them psychologically. I never showed any emotion, and I never cried over anything. As I got older, I was the one to take care of my mother. I would stand up for her against my dad, and I’d be there for her to vent.
In my life now, I find it very hard to share my feelings. I have aggressive tendencies when I get angry, and I am very emotional. Currently, I am in a serious and committed relationship with someone whom I love and care for very much, but because of my childhood, I cannot express my feelings in the way he does.
Sometimes I overstep boundaries and become hurtful during arguments. I am now working to change that part of me so in the future I can create a healthy, loving family of my own. I still have a long way to go until I am healed completely from this, but as I have gotten older and do not have my parents in my life, things have gotten so much better.
I am finally having my voice heard, and I am gaining back the confidence and self-esteem I lost as a child.
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