Originally Posted by Thunderlizard
They didn't realize the impact, or they didn't recognize the abuse? Even if they didn't recognize the abuse, there was most certainly some kind of impact.. when someone puts a light on it, you say "oh, gawd, is THAT why I feel that way/do that/ avoid that" etc..
But it's there, realized or not.
Fifteen years of not recognizing the abuse for what it was later, I understand what it did to me now.
I agree and I've seen instances of this too. Sorry to hear if you were one of them.
The thing I'm most afraid of today though is the 'victim' role. I think the vast majority of people have found themselves in what we'd term abusive situations at some point in our lives. Hell, Saudade mentioned probably the most common one - public school ! I know more people who have scars and baggage because of that experience alone than family/culture wounds.
But what's changed in the last 20 years or so is this whole victim culture. It's a live feed to even a lot of social/psychological workers raking in millions and in many cases having little real impact. Why ? Because in many cases they have their own issues (discovered via education) that they tend to transfer to their patients.
Long ramble which doesn't really fit here so I'll stop now.
Sufficient to say that in years past most people were able to keep that in proper context - i.e. as PAST experience-and move forward with their life in a more positive manner. And I've spoken with more than a few people who view the situation the same. Those were the people I was referring to when I mentioned some had no concept of abuse until someone pointed out to them they might have been a 'victim'. Their take ? "Oh - hell ya - that happened to me ages ago. I've left that far behind."
And so they have.
I realize that's not possible in all cases and I realize not all personalities seem to be constructed in a manner to support that. But I'm only afraid that "trying" - i.e. to just leave it in the past and move on - is being totally lost as even an option ! Part of building strength for facing life's challenges comes from dealing with existing ones head on. Not from crying foul and swallowing 12 pills a day.