Why I Destroyed all the Men who Loved Me.

7.5

The Elephant Ecosystem

Every time you read, share, comment or heart you help an article improve its Rating—which helps Readers see important issues & writers win $$$ from Elephant. Learn more.

Views 10
Shares 10
Hearts 10
Comments 10
Editor's Pick 0.0
Total Ecosystem Rating 7.5
40 Do you love this article? Show the author your support by hearting.
14
4.8k

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Elephant Journal (@elephantjournal) on

Most of us outgrow our childhood fears by the time we reach adulthood.

Sadly, we can carry any ill-spoken words our little souls heard right along with us into our adult lives. These seemingly harmless words spoken shaped our identities and self-worth, and now our childhood wounds replay in our adult relationships.

How many adults have sought counselling in one form or another for our depression, anxiety, relationship issues, or addiction? According to much psychological research, most of our adult issues have stemmed from our childhood ones. (Apparently, there are a lot of wounded children locked away in adult bodies!)

We keep reliving our childhood dramas daily. Some are not that big of a deal—and others bleed into our relationships and wreak havoc in our lives.

Looking back on my own childhood, I realized I did not think I deserved to be loved. I am not sure when it started or why, but somewhere in my life I had convinced myself I was unworthy of love. No matter how many relationships I found myself in, I could always find a way to sabotage them, and find a reason to run away.

I believed I was a failure at love. I have the trophies to confirm my beliefs—divorce documents from two failed marriages all neatly filed away with all my other important accomplishments in life.

“I now see how owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we will ever do.” ~ Brené Brown

It was difficult to face the truth that I sought out attention by acting out. But I needed to figure out why I behaved this way if I was ever going to move forward and have loving relationships without destroying them.

I do remember, growing up, I was referred to as “the difficult one,” or people would say “that’s just the way she is.” I admit that I was a strong-willed child—but why did I seek attention in my adult life in such a negative way?

When I was younger, the friends I connected with were wild children. We would make games out of breaking as many rules as we could. Even after I was punished and sent to my room, I would sneak out of the house to do anything I wanted. To me, it was not a big deal. All that would happen if I got caught was a spanking or I would get yelled at. It was a small price to pay for having fun!

As a teenager, I put my parents through hell—acting out in rebellion for any kind of attention I could get. I learned how to manipulate a situation for my benefit. In my early relationships of love, they were all just games to me.

By high school, I had mastered the game of pulling guys in and pushing them away. All I wanted was attention, but I had not learned how to get it in a healthy way.

I learned that the words we are called in our youth carry over into adulthood. These seemingly harmless remarks of “difficult” or “troublemaker” form our small identities and affect our lives when we grow up and search for love.

I am ashamed to admit this, but I have destroyed good men’s egos by pushing them away. I have tested many of my friends because I did not think I was deserving of such a loving friendship.

We are responsible for our actions. When we have unhealthy behaviors, we push good people out of our lives. They leave because they have healthy boundaries—even if it is difficult for them to let us go and watch us destroy ourselves.

I had to relearn who I was as a child, and embrace my childhood pain, too. I no longer define myself as “difficult” or “that is just the way she is.” If there is only one thing we can learn, it would be that we must release our loyalty to our past traumas.

It is important to notice the signs when they are happening. We pay a heavy price as adults by holding onto our past and not healing our inner wounds. It takes courage to go back, but don’t we owe it to ourselves and to those who love us?

Talk with your partner about your insecurities, and if need be, seek out professional counselling as an individual or a couple to help with this process. It often takes a professional to help us understand our past wounds. We dealt with them the best we knew how as a child, but we can now go back as adults and assure our inner child we are safe.

We can learn healthy habits for dealing with our wounds.

One way is to keep a diary to track progress and to document visible changes and feelings. Writing is used by many therapists in the healing process. It helps us to release our inner thoughts in a safe manner and learn about ourselves in a deeper, cathartic way.

When we are able to see our beautiful inner child, we can step out of the shadows of our former identify and form healthy, loving relationships.

But, to do this, we must first identify and make peace with our inner child.

“Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.” ~ Aberjhani

~

author: Christina Martin

Image: @elephantjournal/instagram

Image: Jacqueline Day/Unsplash

Editor: Naomi Boshari

7.5

The Elephant Ecosystem

Every time you read, share, comment or heart you help an article improve its Rating—which helps Readers see important issues & writers win $$$ from Elephant. Learn more.

Views 10
Shares 10
Hearts 10
Comments 10
Editor's Pick 0.0
Total Ecosystem Rating 7.5
40 Do you love this article? Show the author your support by hearting.
14
4.8k

You must be logged in to post a comment. Create an account.

bresnchz Feb 27, 2019 9:31am

Nice written article about the struggles that are brought from childhood into adulthood. I certainly agree that most of our challenges in life has started when we are growing up.

    Christina Martin Feb 27, 2019 9:47am

    Thank you! You rock, Brenda!

hookedonbc Feb 25, 2019 9:57am

thank you Christina

buttercups to hic-up’s

time has made it mark
it fears nothing including the dark
I wish now and then but stopped by my thoughts
I just wonder if you ever think or look back
There once I stood
Now no more

I could write you my heart my soul
And for what to hurt again
as I try To Mend something so broken
its not us

just I

    Christina Martin Feb 27, 2019 8:24am

    Thank you for reading my article and I too love the poetic comment!

georgia.kris Feb 23, 2019 9:04am

Thank you for sharing this piece, truly spoke to my heart.

    Christina Martin Feb 23, 2019 10:22am

    Grateful my article spoke to your heart. Thank you!

Chelsea Thom Feb 21, 2019 12:07pm

Yep yep and yep- way to put words to something that rings so true!

    Christina Martin Feb 21, 2019 12:58pm

    Chelsea so glad it spoke to your soul! Thank you for your feedback ♡

Jennifer Evangelista Feb 21, 2019 5:16am

Thank you for sharing. I love the statement of “giving up your loyalty to past traumas.” It’s amazing how a sentence can spark one of those aha moments for further self-reflection. Thank you.

    Christina Martin Feb 21, 2019 12:56pm

    Jennifer, thank you so much for your feedback ♡

Kerri-lyn Bryant Feb 20, 2019 6:57pm

I think a lot of us are still trapped by what was passed onto us from our childhoods. It is a never ending process.. well done for this piecex

    Christina Martin Feb 20, 2019 7:18pm

    Thank you for the feedback Kerri-lyn! It is a never-ending process but we have our entire lives to keep working on ourselves!

Daytraderblues Feb 20, 2019 11:38am

Well written piece that captures the struggles that many of us have in dealing with the unwanted emotional tattoos we are inked with in childhood.

    Christina Martin Feb 20, 2019 2:17pm

    How I like that, “emotional tattoos we are inked with in childhood”

Read The Best Articles of March
You voted with your hearts, comments, views, and shares.
CLICK TO SEE WHO WON

Christina Martin

Christina Martin grew up in Pennsylvania in a small town where everyone knew everyone else. Later in life, she challenged herself to step out in the big WIDE world. She is currently pursuing her passion for traveling while exploring the depths of her soul as a writer.