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Can domestic abuse in early childhood affect a person permanently? (Learning about my dad)

M

MsM

Former member
Can domestic abuse in early childhood affect a person permanently? (Learning about my dad)

I'm not sure where to start, but this has been bugging me for a while.

When I was 11-17, my dad had terrible rages. He would scream, guttural screaming with a crazy look on his face, and he would throw things around. He'd scream and hit things, smash things, throw things. It used to scare me, and I always, always blamed myself. Because it seemed to start with me.

When I was 11, there were many days when I didn't want to go to school. My dad would yell at me, hit me with magazines, and I would sob and hyperventilate. It's obvious to me now that anxiety disorders had already crept in before I even hit puberty. Every emotional breakdown I suffered about school in the following years, was met with screaming and throwing. He'd start off, I'd run up to my room, slam the door, and he'd follow me and kick my door. I'd kick it back. Kick, kick, kick, in turn, as hard as we could, with him screaming on one side and me sobbing on the other. He was probably the first to stop, because I would have responded. If he gave, he got. He used to look demonic during these rages, like something took over. His last rage was about April 2007 (I'm good at remembering months and years). I don't know why he stopped. He has M.E, or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, so he possibly just got too tired and sick for those dramatics. But I always blamed myself. Now... I'm not sure.

I made a discovery when I was 15 or 16. I never really forgot it, but I never thought about it again. Until a few months ago, when it popped into my head and I went to look for it again. Ten years ago, I found my mum's old diaries/datebooks dating all the way back to 1985. I thought, oh cool, I can read what happened before I was born, and when I was a kid. I was just expecting, "J started school today, fought with teacher." Or, "D got injection today." But she wrote about my dad. It's a riddle to me, she could be talking about anything. I can't tell what my dad did, but it made my mum extremely unhappy. She wrote about him being a liar. About not being able to trust him. She wrote about how he had promised to stop taking the pills. She wrote about how she found the pills and he cried, swearing he wasn't taking them. She wrote about taking me, when I was a baby, into another room to sleep with me, away from dad. She wrote about being unable to be with him any longer, because they weren't right for eachother. She wrote about them splitting up, and him moving out. He moved back in a week or two later. She wrote about how she didn't believe he would ever change. And she wrote about him (or them?) going to the Dove centre. I did a search on that, as I don't know what the Dove centre is. All I can find is that there was a domestic violence centre called Dove in the 90s. I think this must be right, because I was talking to mum about the Refuge Christmas gift list, and she said she'd been there.

I don't know what any of that is about. But it got me wondering. Could I have experienced all this in my early childhood, and been affected by it? Could it be at least partly why I went on to have emotional problems, fear of being on my own, sensitivity etc.? I must have seen a lot of it, as these notes were mostly made from 1990 or 1991 onwards. I was born February 1990. Maybe I cursed them. Maybe I brought misery (I was unplanned). OK, I'm talking nonsense now. But I do wonder if it could have affected me and started everything. How much are you aware of when you're that young? When you're a baby, until about 4 or 5?

I don't feel like I can ask my mum about it. It is too private. Uncomfortable. It feels like I would be confessing my nosiness and opening old wounds, opening Pandora's box of secrets that I'm not ready for. That I'm too vulnerable to hear.

It's just... interesting.
 
I

Izera

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 25, 2016
Messages
403
Being a child victim of domestic violence can and will affect you. Like you said, you unfairly blame yourself. You lacked feeling safe in your own home, that will also affect you. You will have to do some serious introspection and maybe therapy to keep from repeating the cycle, to keep from picking a man that seems familiar, only for that familiar to be a domestic abuser.

Good luck to you, you are really going to need it.
 
G

Georgiah358

Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2016
Messages
5
I relate to this a lot,my childhood was different in many ways, my dad died when I was 2, my mum
Then became a heroin addict, me and my two brothers went to live with my aunty in Newcastle! She and her girlfriend didn't treat us well, we was made to sit and the table and not move until we had eaten! I remember nearly vomiting and crying everytime I had to eat something I didn't like.. there was a lot of bad there, being hit with a hair brush, locked in our rooms crying for a mother I didn't even know, I was also sexually abused, when my mother got clean and we was all back together 5 years later it resulted in softer drugs, violence around me, never feeling safe, police raids, the house being robbed with only me and my younger brother there, I used to sit at my window everytime I heard a car door with my heart beating in my ears, thumping off my chest and now at 20 years old I feel strong like I have over come a lot! But mentally it has took its toll on me and not many people can understand, when I'm in certain situations I just crumble and I have to run, get away from it before I go into oblivion which is an anxiety attack!
 
C

Crazy Lady In Stanton

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 29, 2015
Messages
1,534
Location
Stanton, CA
I was the victim of child abuse at the hands of my mother and my stepfather, which the elders of my mother's church helped cover up. I am forty five, and I'm still not over it. I still feel fear, and I feel a whole lot of rage I don't know how to get rid of. Counseling didn't really help me any.
 
C

Crazy Lady In Stanton

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 29, 2015
Messages
1,534
Location
Stanton, CA
I'm terribly sorry you went through all that.
I'm sorry it seems to be affecting you now. I wish I knew of a way to take away your pain, but I don't. All I can tell you is don't stop fighting. Don't give up.
 

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