For First Time Visitors

If you are a first time visitor to this blog, I invite you to start from the beginning, especially if you are unfamiliar with the potential emotional impact of long-term child abuse.

Trigger caution to unhealed survivors!

Understanding the Incomprehensible

Children of incest or long-term sexual abuse grow up to be wounded adults with complicated emotional issues. Unfortunately, some symptoms are misinterpreted or often dismissed as "crazy", only serving to maintain a tormented victim status. We, as a society, have the power to change this dynamic. Each of us can make a difference.

Oct 5, 2008

When memories begin

When a survivor begins to remember will be individual to that person. Some generalizations are known. An adult who began early life with DID will likely have no idea of the abuse until between ages 35 and 45. It is believed that there is an erosion of the amnestic barrier that goes with age that begins during that period of time. For some, memories may begin after the death of the abuser--when the mind finally deems it safe to remember.

Women who bear children may be triggered by the birth process or when their child becomes the age they were at the time of onset of abuse of a particularly traumatic incident. Along the same lines, any conscious life incident that closely parallels something that has been stored in amnesia, may trigger the first memory. An example might be witnessing a child on a bicycle fall over or be hit by a car. If any childhood trauma involving being thrown from a bicycle or pushed over while on a bicycle, might be sufficiently similar. It doesn't necessarily have to be something traumatic that happens in conscious life--just something with an element of abuse that might be ready to leak through to consciousness.

For me, it was imminent contact with my family. I had avoided visiting them for several years and had dreaded the next visit which was a family event I was expected to attend. As the event approached, I grew more and more apprehensive but knew I had to go. I purchased the airline tickets one day and the next day I had my first memory. I believe my memories stopped me from visiting the family and walking into a dangerous situation with my father.

There is no one reason memories begin. Even if someone is diagnosed as DID, memories will not begin until they are ready to begin. But working with alters and developing grounding, coping skills, and internal cooperation and communication can start with a qualified therapist. The many variables of each survivor healing make it as challenging as it is rewarding to work with survivors of trauma. We need so many more therapists to help our population of survivors. Many areas of the country are in dire need of qualified therapists. When memories begin, the survivor needs professional guidance. That would be part of the greater societal problem created by the propaganda machine who denies the abuse, denies the therapists to work with survivors, and denies the ability to have intensive therapy covered by insurance. It's one big web just lurking out there interwoven into every fabric of our societal being.

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