The endless recitation of woes on blogs I used to enjoy is giving me a headache. It’s not a lack of personal sympathy. It’s more like emotional exhaustion. So many people seem to be stuck in the mire of misery that began in childhood.
Don’t they want to move on? The quagmire of despair has become comfortable. They have moved in and made misery their home. Some of these bloggers continue exploring the depths of their suffering for hundreds — thousands? — of posts. Many are closing in on Social Security yet are still suffering from childhood trauma. So much for time casting a rosy haze over the past.
There ought to be a legal cutoff date at which point you are required to close the book on whatever awful experiences life has dealt you. At some point, there ought to be a law forcing you to come to grips with your rotten childhood and terrible former relationships. Or at least be required to find another subject about which to write.
I know lots of people who were abused as children. I was. My brother was. Many of the people to whom I sold or gifted my book had never been able to talk about it before. I helped more people to be able to talk about it. It was a big deal for me.
Because we don’t talk about it. We act like we are the guilty parties. It seems that more folks than not grew up in dysfunctional families … and each dysfunction was different than any other. And anyway, who hasn’t had a terrible relationship or three?
I plead guilty on all charges, your honor.
It was my first husband (before you ask, he was the one who died) who gave me a Gibbs slap and got me to get it together. This was before my second marriage, the one in which I managed to step in front of the same bullet I’d previously dodged.
Note to Self: We never get too old to act like morons.
Jeffrey didn’t have a storybook childhood either (who did?), so he had his own issues to resolve. One day, when I was going on about my father he said: “You know, you’ve told me these stories before. Several times. Maybe it’s time to move on.” It was good advice and I wish he’d taken it.
You have to want to move on. It took time and work, but I’m glad I did it. There have been plenty of new traumas and I doubt I’d have survived if I hadn’t cleared the decks. Nowadays, I’m overloaded. I cannot bear to read another angst-laden tale of abuse and emotional trauma. I’m aware is its, was awful.
Been there. Survived. I support all efforts to free oneself from the lingering effects of the past are hard. We are so stubborn about the bad stuff we’ve gone through. Why is pain so much clingier than good times? There’s enough misery to go around without adding more.
For all of us, maybe it’s time to stop defining ourselves as the worst times in our lives.
- We are not what others did to us.
- We aren’t our mistakes.
- As much as we have suffered, we’ve also found fun, joy, friends, love. It’s just so much easier to remember the pain.
We empower misery and dismiss happier times.
Misery is like a piano falling on your head; happiness just creeps up on you. The result? Long after the people who hurt us have disappeared from our lives, they are still beating us up.
Let’s celebrate the good times. Who couldn’t use a few good laughs? Especially now. I was SURE today was Thursday. It’s Wednesday. By Sunday, it might be next month. Who can tell?