About a month ago, I wrote a list of my parents’ behaviors – ones that were hurtful and/or odd – and I showed this list to my counselor. I wanted to know if it could be considered emotional abuse because I was tired of dealing with the grey area. I wanted a definite answer. She said she understood how these behaviors could have a negative impact and how they could make someone feel emotionally unsafe. She sees emotional abuse as any behavior that causes emotional hurt, fear, confusion, etc., and she said that this is emotional abuse. She told me to stay safe – for example, stay away from them when I can. This semester is busy, so I’ve been doing that. She said the best thing to do right now is to protect myself.
When she told me what she thought, this part of me knew. It was validating. Yet this other part was scared, and I felt this weight. It is difficult to think about parents being emotionally abusive. It’s complicated. I love them, yet I know their behavior is harmful. I’m hurt (and sometimes angry) about what they’ve said to me, and it’s exhausting.
I want to learn how to let go of my expectations of them. I’m still not sure how to go about doing this. As of now, I have a lot going on in my life. I’m trying to balance classes, homework/exams, lab work, church, time with my friends, self care, etc. Because of that, I haven’t been able to process this. I want to process this, but I wonder if it would be too overwhelming, especially because I’m living in the same house as them. When I figured out they were invalidating me, it was so difficult for me to deal with. I don’t want to live in denial or brush it under the rug, but I’m wondering if it would be easier for me to fully process everything after I move out.
It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve seen my assailant. I’m feeling better than I did on the day of my last update, which is good. I hope that if/when he does come back, I’ll be able to cope.
I’m taking everything at my own pace and trying not to overwhelm myself. I have supportive people (including all of you!) who have helped me through the rough moments, and I’m so grateful for that. I hope you’re all having a wonderful week!