Childhood sexual abuse does something to you, it takes away your ability to trust, and causes unbelievable self esteem issues. Who am I kidding, I have no self esteem. It’s always been that way, at least as long as I can remember.
I can probably count on just both hands the number of times I’ve looked in the mirror and actually believed that I looked good that day. It just doesn’t happen, mainly because I don’t let it happen. Someone can stand right beside me and tell me I look nice, or they’re glad I came along on some outing, and I take the compliment graciously but inside, my mind is working on downplaying the kind words.
Since I’ve started regular therapy sessions, I fully blame the childhood sexual abuse on my total lack of self esteem. I don’t see myself the way others do. I’d like to, but I can’t.
People say to me, why do you always look sad? Why do you look like you carry so much pain, like the weight of the world is on your shoulders? I can’t deny it, two failed marriages and being abused as a child has taken it’s toll on me. They usually notice that sad or painful look when I’m not really paying attention, and just kind of spacing out or starring into space for no particular reason; Dissociating.
In fact my youngest son said as much when I picked him up from his mom’s the other day, “Dad you look depressed or sad”. I really have no valid response, so I usually just say, “I’m find kiddo, I’m just thinking”. Just tonight he said, “you look so tired and worn out”. Again I try and brush it aside and downplay it, but it’s painfully obvious even to a 14 yr old that something is up.
It takes away your ability to trust and believe that there are good people in the world that genuinely care. People who don’t have an agenda, and aren’t out to get something out of you in return for simple conversation and friendship.
Of course there are those types of people in the world, we all know that, so we do have to be careful. However, I think we can become jaded (for lack of a better term), when we’ve lost the ability to trust and believe in man kind. At least that’s how I am, I know that. I don’t trust anyone any further than I can throw them until I get to know them*. On top of that, you have to be someone very genuine, sincere, and honest to even get to the chance to know the real me over time.
* There are rare exceptions to that rule, I will admit that. Sometimes I just get a feeling after meeting someone and I know right off the bat they are genuine and sincere. Again, not very often though
Man that sounds so conceded doesn’t it? I certainly don’t mean to be that way, but I guess the reality is that trust has to earned way more with me. I’m working on trying to break down those barriers and open up more to people, but it’s not easy. Just add it to the list of things I hope to be better at one day.
It makes me sad, that the teenager who groomed me and used me for his pleasure, has affected my very being in daily life so much. I’m just scratching the surface of how much so and I’m actually pretty intimidated to find out what else is hidden in the recesses of my mind. If I don’t find out though, I’m doomed to continue the life I’ve lead so far, and I’m ready for something different now..at least I think I am.
I’m determined to learn and uncover the mystery of my abuse, no matter what and take my life back. I want to one day grab a hold of some of that self-esteem I see others have.