recovery saying

This is so hard for us emotionally abused. But it is okay to say no. It’s okay to set boundaries. You are not being selfish nor awful!

something i don’t see a lot in tumblr’s rhetoric about mental illness and recovery is a distinction between recovery through suppression and conformity and recovery through coping.

suppression and conformity is not recovery.  it implies that you are simply repressing the symptoms of your mental illness or disorder and causing yourself more pain.  suppression implies that you are ignoring your mental illness, not acknowledging your symptoms, and conformity implies that you are putting on a neurotypical facade.  so many people assume that’s the end goal of therapy and medication (should people choose to do that) or general recovery. that people are trying to “cure” you.  it’s where i think a lot of the “i shouldn’t need to get better” rhetoric comes from.

but that’s not what recovery is.  recovery is coping.  it’s learning about yourself and how you tick.  it’s learning to recognize and acknowledge symptoms so you can better understand them and, ultimately, not let them control you.  it’s understanding that being “wired” differently isn’t a bad thing, but it can make things harder, and learning to recognize those distinctions and address them so you can make your life easier.  it’s recognizing that for some people, therapy and medication are the path to coping, and that the end goal of them is to make that learning and self-discovery process easier so that those people can do it independently in the long run.

recovery is not changing yourself to fit the world.  recovery is learning how to look the world in the eye and say “i now know how to coexist with you now.  i now know how to thrive.”

I’m not the person I used to be.

But, I still remember “that person.”

Like the back of my hand; I remember every single detail.

I remember the nights screaming and crying at the moon.

Trying to find a safe place when I was running in circles around it. I think parts of me ran around it, instead of going in it, on purpose.

I was scared of feeling safe and secure.

I was scared of letting myself be happy.

—  excerpt from a book I’ll never write #21 // @loveactivist

fam-account  asked:

Did anyone else's​ parents make excuses seem like an inherently bad thing? Any attempt to defend myself was met with "I don't want any excuses", which looking back just meant "you are not allowed to defend yourself". An excuse is just a reason you couldn't do something​, but I was made to feel bad by virtue of making one. There is nothing wrong or shameful about an excuse.

This is a very common abuse tactic, and a large reason why many people with a history of abuse have a hard time saying no, and low self-esteem.

the world is heavy
but your bones
(just a cubic inch)
can hold 19,000 lbs

ounce for ounce
they are stronger than steel

atom for atom
you are more precious than diamond

and stars have died
so that you may live

you need to remember these things
when you say that you are weak
and worthless
—  Live Life Happy

In her book Trauma and Recovery, Judith Herman writes about forgiveness (in the context of atrocities and abuse):

“Revolted by the fantasy of revenge, some survivors attempt to bypass their outrage altogether throught a fantasy of forgiveness. This fantasy, like its polar opposite, is an attempt at empowerment. The survivor imagines that she can transcend her rage and erase the impact of the trauma through a willed, defiant act of love.
But it is not possible to exorcise the trauma, through either hatred or love. Like revenge, the fantasy of forgiveness often becomes a cruel torture, because it remains out of reach for most ordinary human beings. Folk wisdom recognizes that to forgive is divine. And even divine forgiveness, in most religious systems, is not unconditional. True forgiveness cannot be granted until the perpetrator has sought and earned it through confession, repentance, and restitution.

"Genuine contrition in a perpetrator is a rare miracle. Fortunately, the survivor does not need to wait for it. Her healing depends on the discovery of restorative love in her own life; it does not require that this love be extended to the perpetrator.
Once the survivor has mourned the traumatic event, she may be surprised to discover how uninteresting the perpetrator has become to her and how little concern she feels for his fate." 

(pages 189-190, Chapter 9, Remembrance and Mourning)

tl;dr: Forgiveness is not a requirement for healing. You can heal and move on without forgiveness. 

It can also harm you and it should never be demanded of you.

And you certainly don’t owe forgiveness to anyone. 

1. Feel sexy underneath.
You don’t need a significant other to wear fancy underwear for. Throw on a matching set of a bra and panties. Wear as much lace as you want. You’re seeing it. Feel sexy for you.
2. Remember to moisturize.
You are the one living in that skin. You have a beautiful soul to keep warm, so take care of your skin.
3. Shave or don’t shave.
Do whatever makes you feel the sexiest. If you like your leg hair wild and free, then do it. Let yourself be as you once were before you knew what society made a razor do to young women. Love your skin. If you like your legs shaved, then baby take your sweet time as you do it. Feel every inch of your luscious legs and smile as you appreciate the feeling of your body.
4. Take millions of selfies.
Worship your body, your face, your everything. Your soul leaks through these photos. Each selfie is a shrine built to worship your own unique beauty. Do not be ashamed of it. Share these photos with the world or keep them hidden, but do not fear them. Embrace the power and freedom that comes from loving yourself enough to take a selfie.
5. Nourish yourself.
Eat cake or eat carrots, eat what makes your body and soul feel good. Exercise whenever you want to. Don’t do it because you feel like you have to: do it because your body screams for the endorphins. Don’t deny yourself food out of fear. Only do it when you really, truly, deep in your soul, do not desire it. You are a wildfire and you are allowed to eat up the world, as much of it as you choose. If you want something, consume it. If not, burn on, wildfire.
6. Get lost in nature.
Take a buddy to the mountains or simply lie down in your front lawn, just allow yourself to be consumed by the world around you. You were once a part of the earth, so remember to embrace every bit of it. Allow yourself at least 10 minutes of peace a day in nature. It will leave you feeling more grounded than ever before.
7. Say no.
I cannot stress this enough. Your ability to say no defines you. You are a strong, empowered individual, and if you disagree with something or don’t want something, do not be afraid to say no. That is your RIGHT. No one has the right to coerce you into doing something you do not want to do. Do not let the concern of hurting their feelings injure you in the long run. Say no and I promise you, you’ll be better for it.
8. Be independent.
Being single leads to a type of freedom that some people are unaccustomed to. When you are single, you are truly independent. Make decisions for you. Be selfish, in a way. Don’t let others stand in the way of your burning soul, your true wildfire. This is your life and you must live it for you. Do not allow others to dictate how you should or should not live. Let those people go. Be free of those restrictions and burn on.
—  a few things i learned after being single for almost a year (squatdatazz.tumblr.com)
Things NOT to Say to Someone With PTSD/C-PTSD

***TW: Some graphic questions near the end of this post which are specific to CSA survivors are mentioned, please read with caution***

It can only get better from here. Working with someone who has this disorder can take years to even begin the recovery process. As much as it may come from a good place, it is very dismissive to say, especially when someone has opened up to you. 

Isn’t there someone you can see about this? Although this is true, not everyone has access to mental health services. Very few places, even in North America, have free mental health/crisis services that are available to the general public. 

You’ll only re-hash it if you keep talking about it. As much as someone who doesn’t have this disorder may perceive it that way, part of the healing process for both PTSD and C-PTSD is to talk about it. A lot of the times what will happen is, parts of your memory will come back that weren’t there post-trauma and you will want to tell someone you trust (if you’re ready to). That being said, not everyone who has either of these disorders will want to talk about it more than once (or ever).

If you keep getting night terrors/anger outbursts/emotional control issues/etc. you’re letting the perpetrator win!! This one is troubling because that in itself is victim blaming. What you’re saying is, “You’re not allowed to feel this way or have a bad day because of what someone else did.”

That happened so long ago, why does it even matter? Once again, this is a very dismissive thing to say. A lot of things, traumatic or not, happened a long time ago but still feel like they happened yesterday; this goes for just about everyone that I know. Reminiscing about a time when you were at your first school dance? Perhaps it was a fond memory that meant a lot to you. “Well why does it matter?” - Now you may be able to get the gist of why it’s insulting. 

Everyone has a story. Everyone has their own stuff going on. Okay. Yes, that is true. Every single human being on this planet has at some point been hurt, has their on b.s. or drama occurring. That’s not the point though. As much as I sound like a broken record, this.is.dismissive. Furthermore it erases the fact that the sufferer has been through something and chose to tell you in confidence. 

Your sickness doesn’t define you. Of course this is yet another thing that a lot of people will say when they don’t know what else to say. Let’s be real; we know that PTSD/C-PTSD doesn’t define the person with it, however, they do have to live and cope with it to the best of their abilities. No one will be functioning at 100% when they have to deal with that.

It could have been worse/there are those way worse off than you. I beg your pardon? A veteran’s trauma versus a natural disaster trauma should not be counted in oppression points. Fact of the matter is, the individual has PTSD/C-PTSD. It isn’t anybody’s business how you ended up with the disorder, let alone who has it worse

You need to forgive and forget the person/incident/event. It is not up to anyone but the person with the disorder to decide if they forgive the person that hurt them. Let alone forget them. 

You’re not pure/you’re damaged goods/you’re tainted because of what happened. If this is the case, perhaps you should re-evaluate your values as a person if you’re throwing someone under the bus for living through something traumatic. Also, I can’t even fathom what a lack of humanity one would have to say that to someone, especially a CSA survivor. Would you tell a soldier he/she/they were bad or dirty for being in combat? Would you tell a little girl under 12 years old that she’s “asking for it”? Didn’t think so. 

I mean…didn’t you enjoy it in some sort of way? That’s just our biology right? No. It was traumatic. Just because you somehow got along with the person who was the perpetrator does not mean that it is the victim/survivor’s fault. Chances are, if it was a traumatic event (especially when it’s a recurring thing) then it was not enjoyable. Not even a little bit.

Try to forget about it/Let go of it, it doesn’t exist anymore. It’s as if a lot of these well-meaning individuals seem to forget that PTSD/C-PTSD sufferers actually have awareness. Please note that some individuals are still living with the people or things that have caused this trauma. It’s one thing to know it doesn’t exist anymore, but it’s another when someone else is saying it to you as if you aren’t capable of thinking that thought already.

Why didn’t you talk about it when it happened? OR the alternative - Why has it taken you so long to talk about it? Very similar to victim-blaming; the questions have not-so-hidden implications that you’re lying about it. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that it’s not exactly social conversation to have - would you ring up your friends and talk about something traumatic that would make everyone uncomfortable? 

My friend went through something like that. They turned out fine, you will too!! That’s great and all, however, each trauma is different. It’s great to bounce back from PTSD/C-PTSD (or ANY mental health issue for that matter), but how does one know that their friend isn’t over it? A lot of people still suffer with any range of mental illness that appear to be “over it”.

Quit using PTSD/C-PTSD as an excuse. I think it’s safe to say that we’re at a point in time where a large majority of us acknowledge that there is being a not-so-pleasant individual, and then there’s having a mental illness. These are not mutually exclusive.