Unpacking

How many instances of trauma do you think someone has to experience to be really, really fucked up? One? Three? My magic number was an entire childhood of neglect, four instances of sexual assault (henceforth referred to as SA, to avoid triggering anyone) before the age of sixteen and another four as an adult, then sprinkle in two unexpected visits from the SWAT team busting into the family home, AK’s and all, on two separate occasions to take two separate family members off to prison, and you’ve got yourself one fucked up individual. HI 🤗

“Revictimization” is a strange phenomenon that raises the chances that a sexual assault victim will be assaulted again. 35 times more likely, in fact. The same is true of victims of burglary. Why is this?? Regarding abuse, especially in childhood, it’s because we don’t understand healthy boundaries. We weren’t taught what love was supposed to feel like, but we were taught to fear our abusers. We became vulnerable, full of shame, and too afraid to speak up. Putting ourselves in danger felt comfortable, it’s all we’d ever known. Until recently, I didn’t know that it was abnormal to do drugs with your family at fourteen or have your (much older) boyfriend move in at fifteen. So here I am, at thirty-frickin-four, learning how to set boundaries and how to keep myself out of danger. For me that looks like sobriety, agoraphobia, trauma therapy and loneliness. But for now, I’m safe. And that is a first for me.

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