Shame, embarrassment, pain

Tw: too much info, period talk, serious overshare

I had a fairly good day today.  My general mindset was strong, forward looking and positive. 

I had two flashbacks that made me feel a deep guilt and sadness but they were short lived. 

One flashback was of my dad. He used to collect coins and stamps, often browsing through his collection and showing me some of his stuff and teaching me about their monetary value. My parents worked hard and struggled to make ends meet so as a kid, I remember it as my dad’s secret fortune…  A feeling that one day we’d be rich.

About two years ago I went with my parents to a coin and stamp fair. My dad took some of his stuff to see how much it was worth. He showed his stack of consecutive number brand new notes and the guy basically told him it was worthless because it was held together with a paper clip. I told my mum and she told me that at another fair he was told all his stamps but three were worthless. 

Thinking about that moment,  my heart fell. I felt a deep sorrow.  That my dad didn’t have great role models. That he didn’t have anyone to educate him and show him the ropes. That his lifelong belief that his collections were valuable, had amounted to nothing.  I wanted to hold his inner child in a long tight hug and just say I’m sorry.

The other flashback involved my mother. I also feel lots of guilt for her. A need to let her know that she was the best mother she could be and that I’m deeply sorry for everything if put her through. I also feel that sometimes my siblings and I treated her as badly as my dad did, because she wasn’t strong enough then to put herself first. Because then she was overweight with a low self esteem and everyone came before her. Shes lost weight now and she speaks up for herself a bit more but she still hides her problems and suffers in silence.  Knowing that and nor being there for her because I live so far away, makes me feel incredibly guilty. 

But these moments were fleeting and for most of the day I was happy, munching on popcorn and sugar and just feel more positive. 

Then I decided to start reading Losing Pounds Of Pain by Doreen Virtue. I’m on page 4 and I just started sobbing thinking about my past.

Two memories stand out.

1. The shame I felt when I got my period.  I was always embarrassed about my period. Always hiding that I had it, whispering if I mentioned it. As a child I was never prepared when it came. Sometimes I’d get it and wait until everyone had gone to sleep before sneaking to the kitchen to get a pad. 

I think I was so ashamed of menstruating that I made it problem free. I don’t think I ever spoke to my sister about it,  even though before I got it, I remember seeing my cousin openly show me a pad.

This attempt to hide something natural and normal probably led to one of my most shameful and embarrassing moments. I used to hide my soiled underwear. I shared my bathroom with my brother. My brother, 5 years older, had openly complained about the ‘gross’ girl things I did frequently. He refused to wake me up if I wore a nightie. He called me personally to wipe the seat if I had mistakenly dripped on it.
It all makes sense.  But as a young girl, it all keep feeling like things were wrong with me.

I’m not sure how old I was, but at some point my mum found my drawer of dirty underwear. Note, I did intend to wash them. Every now and then when I had a moment I’d wash the easier ones or soak the white ones in bleach.  

I came home from school to find the drawer left out. My mum yelled at me. Told everyone. I felt ashamed ane humiliated. My brother came in… I remember him tearing about it asking me why I’d so it. The drawer lying in front of him for him to see. I understand my mum’s reaction, we weren’t well off and she probably saw it as a waste. I don’t remember what happened.  But later when my cousin was visiting,  my sister, brother, her and I were playing a game and my sister blurted out about my drawer of dirty underwear. 

I think she told her mum. I remember when i was 15 and was spending time at my aunts, my aunt counted every day to see if I had put my underwear in my washing…  

I’m way more open about my period and I realised I get angry when others aren’t. Internally angry. I wanna yell don’t you dare judge me.

Another incident I remembered but barely, is when my brother and I used to sleep together. My sister, elder by 7 years, found me a nuisance most my life. I remember fighting with her all the time. Or her fighting with me. I still have  scar from her pinch when I was probably a toddler. 

Anyway, my memory goes like this: my brother asks me what game I want to play. I say the sexy game.  he says no. I beg. We pull down our underwear. I feel his rough lips on mine. My sister sees us.  I’m banned from sharing a bed with my brother. Even now they’ll say no we can’t share a room.

I don’t know if it’s real. I don’t remember anything else. I mentioned it to my kinesiologist once and she said it was normal for brothers and sisters to experiment. Or maybe my ex had said that.

The thing is, I remember masturbating from a really really young age. I started with the shower head, then rubbed myself against dolls and teddy bears.  I once told my mum I had bad thoughts. I was once playing with myself and I heard my mum coming so I hid myself in my cupboard – she found me inside naked. I remember being addicted to it. At 12 I fantasised about sexing my crush in a very naive way. At some point I couldn’t sleep without playing with myself… Even if I was sleeping with my cousin or sister. It calmed me. It let me sleep. I thought about sex a lot.

It’s a miracle that I had sex for the first time at 24.

Anyway that my serious overshare for the day. I’m off to sleep.

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5 thoughts on “Shame, embarrassment, pain

  1. About everything. Your period, the hiding, the shame… It seems all a reflection of your environment and I’ve seen happen many times. Things that should have been day to day stuff were all blown out of proportion.
    Even the thing with your brother would sound to me like curious children. It was probably real, not your imagination, but instead of talking about it and explaining why you shouldn’t do that your family threw a veil over it and it’s become something cloudy that bothers you.
    I hope you are able to remove all these layers and see it clear. You are a normal human being with a bunch of experiences, some good, some bad. And the bad ones shouldn’t be a weight you have to carry.
    I hope I make sense…

    Like

    1. I completely agree. It’s all completely normal. And the veil created unnecessary guilt and shame. I’m just glad I see it now. Ever since I made the link between my negative patterns and my childhood, these memories float up like bubbles and burst on the surface. And it’s things I never realised and things I blame myself for. I absorbed it and allowed it to define me. I even blamed myself for being fat. And all that self blame created self hate. And slowly, by accepting all my past and accepting it’s impact on my present, I hope to heal. And hopefully healing will mean I never accept being in a Co dependent, abusive relationship with a philandering man again 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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