A recent search in a drawer that he had put aside for some time revealed old documents and greeting cards, the latter for occasions like birthdays and holidays. They were not what I had received, but what I had given. Somehow bound by one, I opened it. It was for my father and the stick-shaped handwriting that he had once used, but had long forgotten, indicated my childhood handwriting. What was most significant, however, was the inner feeling.
“Dad, I love you,” he would say.
Immobilized, I felt trapped between the child I once was and the adult I became after enduring an unstable, insecure, and sometimes predatory para-alcoholic upbringing.
“Daddy, I love you,” I read again.
Who, I wondered, was the person who wrote that? My life with my father apparently started that way. But sadly, it didn’t end that way. Where, I wondered, has love gone?
Like a growing weed, the disease of dysfunction had evidently encircled and strangled my soul, squeezing it from what it was to what it was not.
A look back at the painful path I was forced to follow provided many clues as to why.
My father, enacting the same patterns of abuse on me that were directed at him as a child victim of an angry alcoholic, did not understand the origins of his behavior, ignored the difference between right and wrong, had no empathy or feeling for the damage he inflicted on me, and he was as devoid of love as I was.
“When we were children and adolescents, we did not receive a true or consistent example of love,” warns the textbook “Adult Children of Alcoholics” (World Service Organization, 2006, p. 6). “So how can we know or recognize it as adults? Our parents shamed or belittled us for being vulnerable children. In their own confusion, they called it love. loving parents. What many adult children described as love or intimacy … was actually codependency or rigid control. ”
An adult son stated that his parents “said they loved him, but that he did not recall feeling safe or loved as a child (ibid, p. 270).” His alcoholic father of his threatened the family and cursed to his children. ”
Trying to grow and develop as a person in the midst of such conditions is like trying to build a 100-story skyscraper in the middle of a hurricane. Discerning the love within him is equally difficult, especially within and between episodes of verbal, emotional, and sometimes physical abuse.
“In order to feel as loving as we can within a relationship, we need to feel safe, and we cannot feel safe while being bullied or emotionally manipulated,” according to Peter R. Breggin in “Guilt, Shame, and Anxiety: Understanding and Overcoming Negative Emotions” ( Prometheus Books, 2014, p. 228). “Love grows in the midst of security and trust, and tends to withdraw in its absence.”
Personal perception, as has often been said, is the determinant of reality, and repeated parental transgressions create hairpin triggers in a child and, ultimately, an adult child, causing him to distrust his reality and rob you of your trust in others, many of whom represent authority figures displaced by parents later in life.
“We do not need to be objectively correct when we perceive that someone is bullying or manipulating us,” continues Breggin (ibid, p. 228). “Our personal point of view is what counts. If we feel emotionally hurt, we have the right to act on our feelings by demanding that it stop or withdrawing.”
Those subjected in captivity to such treatment during childhood had no choice but to endure it, however, progressively diminished and reduced by the onlyfans free trial
caretakers who served as their most important role models. That this was managed by such people only adds to the distorted definition of “love.”
“When faced with the effects of verbal and emotional abuse … we usually resist,” according to the textbook “Adult Children of Alcoholics” (op. Cit., P.30). “We couldn’t believe that people who said they loved us or cared about us were lying. If we were called lazy, embarrassing, or embarrassing, it must (have been) true, as the words came from the most important people in our lives. If we keep an open mind, we learn that this was verbal abuse presented as love, but a loving parent does not say those things to a child. “