Wide Open

Wide Open

I have always loved to travel.  There are a million reasons for that.  The most obvious is escapism.  I have been aware of my desire for escape for quite some time.  Traveling gives me a feeling of being safe.  Nobody knows me.  My abusers are far away.  My daily routine headaches are far away. It is a completely new existence. I have traveled with abusers before.  I lived in other countries with my mother and stepfather.  But I had left my father far behind in the U.S.  And that was a huge relief.  I felt so much safer.  There were no weekends or Wednesday evenings of pure hell.  And in all honestly, my mother and stepfather were wimps.  Since I was a teenager at that point, I could stand up to them.  And I did.  So this probably reinforced my love of travel. And there were some trips in my late teens and twenties that were certainly revealing.  With the constant need for safety and security on hold, I became someone I rarely was … me.  And I have to admit, or maybe you guessed, the real me is a bit wide open.  I don’t hold back much.  If there was a room filled with a thousand people, my goal was to meet most of them. I used to attend international conferences for a volunteer organization.  A typical day would consist of breakfast with some Texans and Japanese delegates (an interesting combination), lunch with some Brazilians, dinner with some Estonians, a party where I danced with a large contingent of South Americans (love the Salsa), followed by a late...
Doing Whatever It Takes

Doing Whatever It Takes

I have been mistreated. I don’t think anyone would deny that. As a child, I was treated poorly because I didn’t have a choice. I was trapped. I could not escape. As a young adult, I was mistreated because I had been taught I was worthless, so I didn’t know how to kick nasty people out of my life. I kept trying to make them happy like I did in childhood. Now I know better. I don’t allow mistreatment any longer. Even my 9-year-old children know I have boundaries and sort of respect them most of the time. But there is another side to this story. As a survivor of complex trauma, it is easy to focus on all the ways I have been victimized. It is easy to feel like an innocent player in this game of dysfunction. But the reality is different. It is true that as a child, I had no part in it. But as an adult, I was a survivor. And survivor means survival. It means my main goal as a child was to stay alive. And as an adult, the main goal didn’t change. I put all of my energy in to my survival. Granted, it was mainly my inner parts. And with my recent discovery of my dissociative identity disorder, I am aware I didn’t always have control over what they did. That being said, my actions were motivated by one goal … to stay alive. So what did that look like? I didn’t have time for friendship. Don’t get me wrong. I had friends. But I would never contact them. If...
Coming to my Rescue

Coming to my Rescue

This past week was a rough one. I have been thrown off my game. I have been less responsive to emails. I have barely kept up with my daily tasks. We have been eating out way too often because I can’t get it together to prepare food at home. I have been stressed, disorganized and not myself. But there’s a reason.  This week I discovered that my kids had brought home pinworms. It isn’t something people want to talk about. I think many people are ashamed about it. It is disgusting. But there’s a problem with not talking about it (especially within the local community). It is highly contagious. As a matter of a fact, it is more widespread than lice. And it is much harder to spot. The symptoms can be mistaken for so many other things. So when we don’t talk about it and educate people about it, it will be spread more easily. People won’t know they have it, so they won’t remedy it. As usual, I am willing to say what others don’t want to say. My family had pinworms this past week. And I was not an exception. While there are several simple treatments for them, they don’t kill the eggs. And ingesting one egg can start the cycle again. So I spent the week battling pinworm eggs. I have been known to be obsessive when I am not faced with invisible worm eggs as an adversary. So you can only imagine my response to this. I was blessed with several sunny days in a row, so I drug everything that wasn’t nailed down...
You Are More Than Your Logic

You Are More Than Your Logic

A World of Logic We live in a logical world. There is no doubt about it. A long time ago, people stopped believing in things they could not see. Whether you believe it is a conflict between science and faith, or masculine and feminine, it is clear. Society values one over the other. There is no balance. We are taught as small children to drop our fascination with the make-believe and focus our attention on what matters. Math, science and technology have quickly become the highest-paid and most valued careers. I know this. I was one of the people who gave up my passion for a money-making career that I hated. I heard the message loud and clear. More importantly, my inner defender heard the message loud and clear. Last week, my inner defender shared some of her secrets with a list of her seven favorite defenses. Some are incredibly stealth in nature. Many people have no idea they are falling for these defenses at all. But she forgot to mention one very important defense. A blog commenter pointed it out. She specifically asked about the logic. She said her defender is always “the logical one”. I immediately recognized it as a major defense for me too. I wondered why my inner defender left it off her list. Maybe she saw it as a fact and not a defense. Maybe she wasn’t quite ready to let go of that little secret. But I thought logic would make a great subject for this week. This defense truly deserves a blog post all to itself. As a matter of a fact,...
My 7 Favorite Defenses

My 7 Favorite Defenses

Hello everyone. This is the Inner Defender here. I sometimes go by Beth, but defender, protector and all sorts of relatively derogatory names have been used. Some days I mind. Some days I don’t. I like to keep it as inconsistent as possible. That really gets under Elisabeth’s skin. And to be fair, we are a conglomeration of defenders, so inconsistency is inevitable. I haven’t been a big fan of Elisabeth’s recovery journey. I admit I thought the whole thing was stupid. It was incredibly risky to take on the past emotions like that. Anything could have happened. We could have died. Not to mention, emotional pain just isn’t very much fun. Personally, I was fine with keeping those emotions under the surface. I mean really. Society doesn’t like them. Nobody wants to see anybody cry, including me. I’ve got better things to do with my time. And if those emotions were going to kill us, that wouldn’t make us any different from everyone else walking around with endless health problems. But I put up with her reckless pursuit of the truth because honestly, I couldn’t stop her. But she stepped it up a notch when she opened her mouth about it. I mean seriously. It was like a suicide mission or something. She was trying to get us killed. How many times did I have to show her the death threat memories? How many times did I replay the violent attacks for her? But nothing worked. There she was blabbing it all over the internet. I was just waiting for the other shoe to drop. And then she...