Tuesday, November 29, 2005

My First Time

This is my first blog, but since I have only 3 friends on Friendster (my first blog location), and who knows if you guys will read this, I'm not really feeling a lot of pressure to make this brilliant or even vaguely entertaining. I like to write, so this is fun in a surreal sort of way. Like, here I am, pouring my heart out to, uh, potentially no one or conceivably anyone. Speaking of which, my life has taken quite the Dr. Phil-esque turn, although my problems are not really Dr. Phil problems. The Phil had a show last week on mental illness, and I'd have to say I was not very impressed. For Phil, mental illness is today's show topic. For me, it's a bloodsucking vampire that ravaged my family, stole my beloved brother from me, and drained my life of stability and joy. We just live in different worlds, Phil and I.

After a series of shocks, scares, and non-gentle proddings, I have started trying to deal with my "issues". It is a daunting task to un-repress the affects of growing up with verbal, physical, and sexual abuse, living with manic-depression (I hate that Vanilla Ice ruined the term "bipolar" for me), and my brother's suicide eight years ago, as well as a handful of other damaging experiences like a four year abusive relationship and a lifetime of coping mechanisms that are less than productive (re: self-destructive).

Lucky for me, there is a never ending supply of self-help books on everything from recovering from post-traumatic shock caused by abuse and/or suicide, to the shock and horror of getting a paper cut. There are some good books out there with helpful information that even I, genius that I am, did not figure out on my own. These books have also led me to try some other things that are helping. No Time to Say Goodbye by Carla Fine got me to start going to Survivors of Suicide support groups. Co-dependent No More by Melody Beattie inspired me to go to more support groups and consider reading Fight Club. The Emotionally Abused Woman by Beverly Engel first made me cringe at the name, then start a journal and individual therapy, and Outgrowing the Pain by Eliana Gil made me truly appreciate cartoon people with big noses. I'm not sure that a book for and about adults abused as children really needs illustrations, but what do I know.

So that's where I'm at- support groups, therapy, reading, writing, talking about my feelings, sharing, hi my name is Kristina and this feels like crap. Dealing with my problems, I mean. It does, however, feel better than repressing it any longer, and I was running out of room to stuff my searing emotional pain anyhow. I'm a little amazed that I've spent the last 8 years unable to face my brother's death, that I can't tell most people that I was sexually abused, and that I haven't been able to acknowledge to myself how abusive my dad was to me growing up. But I'm starting to do all of those things. And I am starting to feel better already. I never would have thought it, but support groups work. Self-help books work. Therapy works. Unbelievable.

1 comment:

j said...

I just found this, and am reading up and through.

It's a shame that you had to deal with any of this.

I think that your brave articulation will be helpful to me.

So, I appreciate you. Not necessarily because you had this experience, but because of your decision to work through it and to share it. That's hard. I know.