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Is it possible to transcend a dysfuntional childhood?

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posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 07:14 AM
a reply to: droid56


But you have to break patterns.

Move far from where you grew up.

Quit watching the cable TV.

Quit listening to the depressing / lamebrain songs you played as a youth. I recommend all new types of non-vocal music.

Learn about and do all new things. The better your natural memory, the more obsessive and over greater spanses of time on this one.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 07:16 AM
Just want to say being critical is not inflicting trauma. Read some of the other replies here to define actual trauma.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 07:30 AM
Read this with an open heart. I can't begin to pretend to be empathetic because I didn't have childhood trauma-annoying but caring parents.
From those I do know who had awful childhoods, either they had something within them to fight to be released from playing that same old tape in their heads that they are not worthy of a good life or they don't. I don't know why it is that way but it seems to always come from deep within; you either have what it takes to make your life what you want or you sink into a neverending depression i.e. drugs, prostitution-self-hate.

Someone loving a person unconditionally, either a romantic-interest(that can be dicey), caring-giving person, religious group etc. can teach the self-loathing how to love themselves. Until they can love themselves they are incapable to share or love others. Just a fact.

The human spirit is very fragile-truth is-either you are born with what it takes to overcome life's tremendous challenges or you arn't-but it really is up to humanity to take in the unloved, downtrodden and be an example of self-less love.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 07:51 AM
It can definitely be done.
I was raised with an alcoholic father, very violent who beat the hell out of me and my mother until he put her into a mental institution and I was left to some relatives to sleep on the floor. When my mother got released she came after me (but somehow she was never right again in her head) and we've changed 7-8 places during my school years hiding from my father. I was a scared child wetting the bed until 14 y/o; by the age of 19 I had already 2 suicide attempts and was sliding down on a very dangerous road. My own mother admitted recently that she didn't believe I will live long enough to reach 30 y/o.

But then somehow I decided I don't want to be a victim forever and is up to me to make myself the life I want. You cannot change the past and the bad things people did to you but you can definitely change yourself and how much power to give to those bad things. "I'm not a victim'' is still my mantra until today; buddhism, meditation and a lot of self awareness helped me along the way to heal and grow. Today I'm an artist, I have raised two great kids, I have the sweetest life partner, I don't drink, don't take drugs or use violence ever so I'd say I overcame the demons of my childhood pretty well.
It only takes the awareness that you don't have to let those experiences define who you are and a bit of hope that there are good things in this life too. The thing that really made me turn my life around was a phrase I found in a buddhist book: "there is no glory in suffering, and no reward".
So yeah, is not easy but it can be done.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 07:52 AM
I guess I'll throw my own story in here.

I have no positive memories of my father. He was what I'd consider to be abusive towards me for most of my life. When I was little he would literally ignore me whenever I'd try to talk to him, like he would act like I wasn't there. I never understood why he wouldn't talk to me, so sometimes I'd get upset. I remember times when I'd be trying to talk to him and he'd fly into a rage and hit me and/or scream at me for talking. One time he could've broken my neck. I was trying to tell him something, but as usual he wasn't responding, so I kept saying "Dad! Dad!", when he suddenly got up and charged at me. I got scared so I got down on the floor, and he grabbed my head and shoved my chin into my chest while screaming at me. There was another time when he sent the SUV we were riding in onto two wheels when he jerked the steering wheel and slammed on the brakes so he could reach into the back seat and squeeze some sort of pressure point in my knee - solely for the sake of physically hurting me for talking. I became afraid to talk to him because I never knew if I was going to say something that would send him into a rage and have him suddenly start hitting me in the head. That fear of talking to people carried over into every other aspect of my life during my early years.

When I entered school, I didn't really have any idea how to properly talk to or get along with other kids due to a combination of being afraid to talk to other people and never really having learned how to socialize properly. This basically caused me to become one of those social outcast kids all the way into early high school (I left during my 9th grade year and ended up just getting a GED). As a result, I was bullied almost every day, and the school didn't care since I wasn't one of the popular kids. Some of the administrators got in on it too. I had one teacher who would sit next to me and try to get me to say things that she could use to get me in trouble. I remember her showing me a picture of her children and asking me if I'd ever shoot them, or if I wanted to blow up the school. Just to note though, I socialized just fine outside of high school during my teenage years. I had a ton of friends - just none from my own school.

As I made my way into my teenage years, my father stopped hitting me (I think he became afraid that I was big enough to defend myself), but it turned into criticism and belittling, yelling, and "power games". He never talked to me unless he was criticizing me, belittling me, yelling at me or ordering me to do even the most trivial of things simply for the sake of having the power to do so, such as demanding I wake up and get out of bed so I can go turn a light off while he stands next to the switch and watches me do it. That was another thing as well, he'd sometimes wait a few minutes after I've gone back to bed and fallen asleep just to barge in my room and yell at me to get up again and do menial things ("There's a paper on the counter! Get up and move it or get out of my house! Do it NOW!"). He loved playing these "power games" where he would exercise his control over the house. For a while he did this thing where he demanded I turn my computer off whenever I wasn't at it, so if I left my bedroom to so much as go to the bathroom, he'd go straight to my computer and unplug it from the wall while it was turned on. I had to take a few ice-cold showers too when he went through his "it's MY hot water" phase and turned off the hot water whenever I got in the shower.

To make matters worse, towards my late teens I started getting very ill. My father would demand I do something, like mow the lawn, and I'd try telling him numerous times that something was wrong with me and I felt very sick and needed to lay down. He wouldn't have it and would instead scream and berate me for being lazy and accuse me of making excuses. This went on for quite a while, until at 19, I found out I had a major kidney problem my whole life and my left kidney had been essentially poisoning my body for years. It was to the point that the tissue inside my kidney was literally dying. I ended up needing several surgeries and was in and out of the ER from complications. Surprisingly, he told me he felt bad for the way he'd treated me with how horribly ill I actually had been. He mostly toned his crap down after this.

I realized later in life that the way he had treated me might have been because of his mother. His mother constantly plays psychological mind games with other people to try to make them feel inferior to her, and for a long time, she had been attempting to do this to me. Fortunately, I'm more intelligent than her and always knew exactly what she was trying to do. Everything she did was total by-the-book psychological and mental abuse. If you read up on it, it'll literally be describing her. My father's sister is completely *ed in the head; she's anorexic and essentially resembles someone who has no self-identity, which can happen when one person grows up having their identity completely dictated to them and controlled by another person. Not ironically, she's very close to this woman. I guess I could see how his mother may have contributed to him being a total @sshole to me through his apparent need to exert control and dominance, but even were that to be the case, it doesn't excuse his behavior.

Concerning my mother, she's always been caring, but she happens to have a rather low level of intelligence to the point that it's difficult for me to even have a conversation with her beyond what one could have with a child. I mean this literally, she has trouble following simple conversation and her brain makes connections that make no sense. I suspect she may be mildly retarded, and perhaps by now have the beginnings of dementia. Needless to say, I've never known what it's like to have parents I can actually talk to about anything of value. I've never experienced being able to do so.

So, how has my childhood affected me? Well, I've never been comfortable around other males. The vast majority of my friends have all been females, and that's all I seek in seeking friends. I don't like talking to or being around other men; I can and I do, I just don't enjoy it. In a year and a half I'll finish college and move to a new area, so I might consider seeking out male friends there and trying to overcome this, but who knows. I have this weird thing too where if I accidentally bump my head on something I suddenly get a combination of being really mad and wanting to cry. I strongly suspect it's from my father hitting me on the head as a child. I also get mad if anyone tells me I'm lazy or that I need to "toughen up", considering I did exactly that while I lived and worked for years being extremely ill due to my kidney literally slowly dying inside of my body, all the while being berated for being lazy or weak or being told to "toughen up" whenever I'd say I didn't feel good.

Other than those things I guess I'm a relatively well-adjusted person. My life is moving forward in a positive direction. I don't plan on having anything to do with my father through the rest of my life though. I have no respect or care for him whatsoever. I just don't want him in my life.

Wow, that got long. Sorry if it was in any way inappropriate for the purpose of the thread.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 09:28 AM
a reply to: droid56

I did it.
Ran away from home aged 16, slept on the streets 6 months and rebuilt my life.
Now the father of a well rounded kind confident 19 year old son who I have a fantastic relationship with.

My crappy childhood deeply influenced how I worked at parenting and it paid off.
All my friends are envious of the relationship between me and my son but we just see it as something which should be normal.
Sadly it is not for many people.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 10:08 AM
a reply to: droid56

You see here...YOU have. I have to a lesser here we are...Correct? Because you experienced a bit, recognized it and can talk about it.

Also true, a small percentage will not, cannot get past their dysfunctional past.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 01:02 PM
It's never too late to have a happy childhood.

The real issue here is: Are you capable of transcending that which has happened to you, or are you a slave to your experiences? It's inevitable that your past molds your present. Your decisions at an early age affect your choices later in life. This includes the environment in which you find yourself, i.e.: External factors, and also personal decisions. If you're as smart as you say you are, you ought to be able to take advantage of both and live a fulfilling life. If you reach the age of 60 or so and are still bemoaning the limitations your childhood bequeathed upon you, then I think its fair to say you've failed to overcome those limitations. You can continue to blame your dead father for being critical of you at a young age, but don't expect much sympathy from everyone else.

I just read of a man who was a Cuban immigrant. His parents escaped the Castro dictatorship and made it to Florida. He could speak no English and wound up picking avocados for a living, as many "beaners" do. There was nothing in his background that could be said to be advantageous to him. He could have sent a lifetime in the fields with his only accomplishment being his parents' decision to leave Cuba. But that's not what happened. Within twenty years he owned his own Chevrolet dealership. Yesterday he announced a $15,000 discount on all Corvettes (about 15%) in honor of the anti-Capitalist Castro having died on Black Friday.

You see this all the time. I sponsored a Vietnamese family to get to the US in what was known then as the "Orderly Departure Program" designed to reunite families separated because of the war. It cost this large family (not me) $30,000 in airline tickets to get to Seattle, the money having been saved by one family member already here who worked two jobs for ten years at the minimum wage to get enough money. Within six months this family bought a new construction house in the middle of Seattle. Within a year they had opened up their own Pho Hoa restaurant which provided jobs for all family members and then some. None of them could speak English when they got here. They faced discrimination because they were of a different race--not from whites so much as from ethnic Chinese who considered them lower class Vietnamese, and Blacks who resented them becoming so easily and quickly successful. The youngest kids in that family have now graduated from University, speak English with no accent, and hold college-level jobs.

And yet, we have generations of people born here who know the language who claim they can;t get ahead because of discrimination. And when they riot the first stores they take out are owned by Vietnamese, Koreans, and other ethnic minorities who have put the lie to their idea that people cant be successful in this country because of their race.

Whether you take this idea at a macro level like the examples above, or at a personal level because your Daddy was mean to you when you were a kid doesn't really matter. The fact is you can do whatever you want to do and become the person you want to be if you have the determination to do so. If you can't do that, then you lack the intelligence and drive to manufacture your own destiny. And that's your fault--no one else's.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 02:20 PM
a reply to: droid56

Jimi Hendrix did. And today's his birthday too! Happy birthday Jimi! I think he'd have been 74 today. Anyway, Jimi had an awful childhood, his mom died at 32 years old and his dad shuffled him and his brother around between relatives and pseudo relatives most of the time. He didn't even have any decent clothes to wear.

I happen to be reading a really good biography on him right now, I'd highly recommend it. It's by Sharon Lawrence, a journalist who befriended him back then when he didn't really have any true friends. Most people surrounding him at the height of his fame were only trying to get something from him. He was a humble gentle soul who wanted nothing more than to play music and take it as far as he could. I'd say he succeeded pretty well at that for his short time here.
edit on 11/27/2016 by wtbengineer because: correction

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 04:49 PM
Being born again I know realize its a generational CURSE, not all this karma bs that new agers push, 'I'm just a soul here to learn' blah blah. People of the good seed get all the negative projections and sins of the family forced onto them; its our job to redeem and affirm ourselves through Christ, that's the only way. Its battle!

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 05:02 PM
Of course. I was a victim of a very awful form of child abuse, abandoned by my mom during most of my childhood, both parents married and divorced 8 times to different people, bullied for being fat in grade school, had alcoholics and druggies all around me, and I still managed to get a degree in molecular biology as well as becoming a world class mountain climber, backcountry skiier, and ice climber.

I paid for my schooling by myself and only ate once every other day to afford college. Be tough!!!!! I'm a whole bunch of kid's hero and the lover of a queen. Damn proud of it. That's how a man gets life done.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 08:00 PM
a reply to: droid56

You can break free, but you might be in recovery for a while. While my experiences are in no-way worse than anyone elses' on here, I have gone through quite a bit. Below is the short list.

-I grew up in a household where we would constantly get compared to our other siblings. Never mind I got straight A+'s in programming for three years, what was more important was sidelined to my brother, who was getting straight A's in everything and went to a real college (now, the roles are flipped - I have an associates degree from ITT-Tech...and all my jobs have been in my field of study; so now everyone else is getting compared to me). This is still going on.

-My parents got into a divorce that kept me separated from my siblings for a few years. It's not a good feeling when your Dad is depressed because he had to give up seeing my brothers and sisters for almost the full year, while the person that sparked the divorce in the first place sees them all the time.

-I lost my dog around the same time; she was the only thing really keeping me sane (my cat doesn't count, as we tolerate each other).

-I had it rougher because we never had a lot of money (I didn't get a car until I was starting my first job).

-The hardest pill to swallow was that I moved out of my hometown the day after graduation. This was the town I grew up in, explored, and where everyone I knew lived. I remember saying nothing all through the move, and just crying for a day once my bed was made up.

Many people will tell you that you cannot break free of your past because they don't know how to, lost all hope, and just plain give up. I was like that for about a year after moving for the 5th time (yep, I traveled around quite a bit), and then I started to realize that I had two options: Take a predetermined path in life (go down the dark side towards depression, anxiety, and anger), or make a name for myself and forage ahead.

Took my passion for computers and made a career out of it; this path allows me to work my butt off during the day (keeps me out of trouble, heh), sleep easy at night, and take time off for me. I'm not a first-chair musician as one parent hoped, but I've been able to claim doing things that few others get to (IE: Orchestra Hall). The only side-effect I have is that I still check over any potential dates with a fine-tooth comb, as I do not want my relationship to break like my parents' did. As long as you put your mind to it, you can achieve it.


posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 11:13 PM
My thoughts go out to some of the members who've posted their experiences. There's lessons for everyone in there.

All I can say is the self-motivation is where it's at. As decent as my parents were, I had to at some point "do the opposite" and reject their personal influence and templates they had for me.

posted on Nov, 27 2016 @ 11:26 PM

originally posted by: tigertatzen
a reply to: IsntLifeFunny

Sounds like you had a nice life if all you had to deal with was some negativity from your pops. That shot was the least of my worries. 

When an individual tries to keep score on how sh!tty their childhood was compared to others, and that individual is a grown ass adult, such behavior is highly indicative of a person who enjoys being a victim. A person like that will never let it go and move on, because the dynamic is that of a symbiotic relationship with the abuse that translates into a very unhealthy sense of superiority: My pain is more important than yours because I suffered a longer list of injustices, therefore I am better than you.

Sorry, but no. Pain is 100% subjective, and cannot be measured by anyone but the person experiencing it. Therefore, you have zero right to tell another person that his or her ordeal was less important or less traumatic than your own. People who treat others that way do so because they don't want to let go and move on. They like being victimized, especially if it makes them appear more victimized than anyone else...hence the practiced laundry list of all their misfortunes thrown out there as a way to minimize or outright dismiss the suffering of anyone who might challenge their lofty, narcissistic position.

A true badge of honor would be for that individual to use their experience to lift others up who have also suffered abuse and hardship. People who tear others down and use past life experiences as a vehicle by which to do so have already made the choice to languish in self-pity rather than move on. Nothing is holding you in the past except for your own unwillingness to simply let it go. Refusal to do so is not a mark of superiority. It is a mark of weakness and stagnation. Strong people get past adversity in life...weak people lash out at others for being strong and rising above unfortunate circumstances. They choose to remain a victim. It is a choice.

I'm not a victim. That's the point. Someone had a rough time with their father not patting them on the back. Yeah, rough life.

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