Emotional Abuse

Coming From An Emotionally Abusive Household I Learned Early That Words Hurt

When you were brought up in a household that was emotionally abusive, you learn to not give a crap.

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People say words can hurt but that is one thing that I had to learn after growing up in an emotionally abusive household.

Growing up I was always harshly criticized for a lot of things, including my looks, grades I got in school, and even what I wanted to do in the future. I rarely had a good compliment from my mom growing up and it made me believe that no matter what I did it would never matter to anyone. It also made me believe that no matter what I say to people, I should not care how they feel and that how they feel is their personal business they need to deal with themselves.

When it came to empathy and respect, those feelings are few and far between. Growing up in a household that was emotionally abusive, my own feelings were never put into perspective of my family members. When it came time to move out and start my own life, I thought what I learned was normal. But it wasn't until my last relationship that I realized that this isn't how most people were brought up.

Here are 3 things I learned when healing from my past.

1. Words do hurt.

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I never realized how much I had hurt others with my words and how much I was hurting myself until I would talk to my friends and my therapist about my life. I realize that even though it may have felt like the right thing to say at the moment, it can end up going a long way.

I cannot speak for the people I had hurt, but for me, I realize that because of my rough upbringing I grew overly independent but also I had always doubted myself and my self-confidence.

2. It is hard for me to know how to encourage the people I care about.

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Growing up I was never encouraged through love but instead, I was always given bad outlooks on things. My mom used to tell me that I would never do anything right and that she didn't know if I would ever be something of myself. At the time I felt she was right and I just took it as it is.

When I dated my last ex, he was doing all that he could but he was not doing things the way I felt he should. Instead of encouraging him to do more for himself, I tore him down by telling him that he would be nothing if he kept doing things his way. I wished I was more patient towards him and been more positive with him, but I had also wished that I had gotten the same from my parents.

3. It's hard to be kind towards myself and others.

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Not only had I put others down a lot, I had also put myself down as well. I would judge myself so harshly to the point that I would fall into crippling depression and anxiety. At the same time I would have this huge ego and would tend to hide my pain by criticizing others especially whoever my partner is.

It is hard to analyze yourself and tell yourself that you will work towards changing for the better. When my ex-left me I realized that I had to make a decision and that was either I stay who I am and risk having a lonely life, or I can do on this journey towards bettering myself and have people who are in my life stay for a good reason. I chose to change because I want to be kind and empathetic towards others.

This won't be overnight but it is a journey I am willing to take no matter the hardships that will come my way.

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won't see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won't laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won't go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They'll miss you. They'll cry.

You won't fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won't get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won't be there to wipe away your mother's tears when she finds out that you're gone.

You won't be able to hug the ones that love you while they're waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won't be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won't find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won't celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won't turn another year older.

You will never see the places you've always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You'll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges, and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it's not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don't let today be the end.

You don't have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It's not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I'm sure you're no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won't do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you'll be fine." Because when they aren't, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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Anxiety Medications Aren't As Scary As You Might Think

It took me about 2 months to even find the right medication and dosage. It's truly a process.

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Before my journey with anxiety, I was very anti-medication. I truly didn't understand the purpose or need for it. Boy, have I learned a lot since then. Upon visiting the doctor, I learned that there are two types of medication that do two different things to the neurotransmitters in your brain. These are categorized as SSRI or SNRI. According to anxiety.org, "SSRIs increase serotonin in the brain. Neural systems affected by increased serotonin regulate mood, sleep, appetite, and digestion."

The medication that I am currently taking falls under the category of SSRI. As a result of taking this medication, "your brain is more capable of making changes that will lead to a decrease in anxiety" (anxiety.org). I don't know if that sounds nice to you, but I loved the sound of it.

On the other hand, per mayoclinic.org, SNRIs "ease depression by impacting chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) used to communicate between brain cells. Like most antidepressants, SNRIs work by ultimately effecting changes in brain chemistry and communication in brain nerve cell circuitry known to regulate mood, to help relieve depression."

From my understanding, the different types of medication focus on different neurotransmitters in your brain. I don't think that one of these is "bad" and one of these is "good." This is simply because anxiety and depression are very personal and impact people differently. My anxiety is not the same as my friend's anxiety. I think it's more of a spectrum.

There are a lot of misconceptions upon starting medication. I think the first is that it works instantly. I have some bad news and it's that some medications take up to a month to get into your system. I mean, you're chemically altering your brain, so it makes sense. It took me about 2 months to even find the right medication and dosage. It's truly a process.

Another misconception is that the pills are addicting- making them completely unnecessary or dangerous. That wasn't true for me. One of my dear friends told me that if you don't feel guilty for taking cold medicine when you have a cold, then you shouldn't feel guilty for taking medication that helps your anxiety. I think this really does boil down to knowing yourself and if there's a history of addiction in your family. However, as someone who's taken the heavy pain killers (via surgery) and now takes anxiety medication, I can testify to say that there's a difference.

The pain killers made me a zombie. The anxiety medication allows me to be the best version of myself. I like who I am when I'm not constantly worried about EVERYTHING. I used to not leave the house without makeup on because I constantly worried what people thought of me. I used to be terrified that my friends didn't want me around. I used to overthink every single decision that I made. Now, none of that is happening. I enjoy my friends and their company, I hardly wear makeup, and I'm getting better at making decisions.

Do I want to be able to thrive without having to correct my neurotransmitters? Sure. However, this is the way that I am, and I wouldn't have gotten better without both therapy and medication. I'm forever grateful for both.

Editor's note: The views expressed in this article are not intended to replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

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