“I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2015 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”
What would you say to a friend who came to you with bruises on her face? How would you feel about her being abused and what things would you wish for her?
How would you feel if she tried to justify the abuser’s behavior by telling you that she had caused it, by triggering him in some way? Would you feel any sympathy for the abuser or tell her to go back to him and try to do better? Do you think that anything about her personality was deserving of the bruises on her face?
What If she were mentally tortured by verbal abuse and gaslighting, to the point that her brain was no longer functioning normally anymore? She was afraid to leave the house, visit her friends or do any of things that she used to love.
Would you want her to get out, get help, and heal from her mental wounds? Would you want her to continue to spiral down the path into further mental destruction?
When you think of this friend, you have compassion for her. You may even have anger towards the thought of the abuser. You know that she is not deserving of abuse and that she is deserving of love. You feel kindness and understanding towards her, don’t you?
What if it were your sister? Your daughter? Your mother? Your co-worker?
How would you want her treated, once she had left the abuse? Would you think she needed time to mentally heal? Would you want her to have support and gentleness from others, about her healing?
What if this person were you? If this person is you, can you offer yourself the same compassion, forgiveness, and compassion that you would offer your friend? You need the same kindness that this friend, that I had you picture in your imagination, needs.
You need kindness and compassion from others, but it all starts with you !
You have to be understanding with yourself. It takes time to heal and it takes however much time it takes. truthfully the past abuse will never go away. It will always be something that happened to you.
You are allowing yourself time to heal, forgiveness for your imperfections, and the general kindness that anyone should have, if they have suffered such trauma. This is real brain trauma. it creates actual organic changes within the brain…Your brain !
Be kind to yourself with your thoughts. Think about yourself as you would think about your friend. Be there and be supportive of your own path to healing, however long it takes. Don’t judge yourself. Don’t think in terms of “should” be able to …or “should not have…”
The truth is the truth and what you did is what you did. You endured what had to be enured. You worked your way out when the timing of getting out was right for you.
If you are still living in the abuse, then forgive yourself for that too, but begin to work on your plan today. Be careful and get support from outside sources that can be trusted, even if you cannot trust family members. If you need people that are disconnected from your life to help you, for the sake of safety, then seek outside help.
Treat yourself the way you would treat any woman you knew that came to you in distress. Any woman who was in danger of her physical or mental safety. Healing starts within you and with your ability to feel compassion for yourself.