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Actually if they were 100% psychotic it would be easy to stay away from them. But because they can be nice too, it makes it so much harder - I know all about the false sense of security that others have mentioned. It's true, I keep vowing I won't let myself get drawn in but here I am again, having gone through a tough time, allowing myself to be convinced that there is some sort of 'normal' loving family life here for me to be comforted by...Ironically it's usually because we have nobody else as well - our families have seen to that with their abuse over the years, many of us simply don't have the self confidence to believe that someone could actually care about us and not see us as our toxic family does...

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Sorry to post for the 3rd time lol but did anyone else almost treat older friends as parent figures when they were in their teens? I found myself doing that a couple of times and age 20 I recognised it and vowed to work towards friendships on an equal footing. My resolution worked - I don't seek parent substitutes now but I still don't have the confidence or self esteem to reach out to friends or to maintain a friendship because I get scared and start to withdraw. Plus I seem to attract alot of abusive people too - friends and boyfriends - mixed in with the nice ones so that complicates things even more!

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Amazed,

Welcome to the Child Abuse forums. There are many supportive individuals here that have experienced some degree of child abuse.

I was so saddened to read of what you are enduring from your family. Are you in any kind of therapy right now? Most of the members on the forums know that I am a firm believer on therapy and the good that it can do for survivors of child abuse.

I hope that you are able to get out of y our parent's house soon, for your own safety - physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Again, welcome to the forum!! Feel free to post as often as you would like.

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Amazed,

You are right in that having periods or moments when our abusers are nice and seemingly loving can make it that much harder when they are abusive to us, in any form. It can also really toy with our emotions and leave us feeling as though we are the ones that are responsible for the abuse we are getting. Let me assure you, this is not the case. We are not responsible for the abuse we endure. The person that abuses us is responsible for their own actions.

As far as treating older friends as parents, yes, I have done that. I think that is most likely normal for those of us that have experienced child abuse. It's as though we crave that love and attention that we never received as children.

Never apologize for sharing here on the forums. It is perfectly OK for you to post as often as you would like. I am here for you.

Last edited by Kelli Deister; 03/18/10 11:33 PM.
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I'm pretty sure if my mother laid one hand on me I'd probably hurt her really bad. Same here, I was told all my life that no one would ever love me. Sadly, that part must play over and over in my head because I have had no luck making or keeping friends. Get out of there!

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Ditto! My parents and brothers are well-liked and are very nice to other people (except for my dad....he's cranky) though my youngest alcoholic brother tends to drive people away because he's too hard to handle when he's drunk. But they all manage to function in life and have good jobs. I don't get it.

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After I figured out what was going on...this cycle that was playing over and over, it was much easier to distance myself from them. I still really hurts not having a family. I also find that other people just really don't get it. I keep hearing that you just need to get over it, that everyone has had some sort of abuse. Wouldn't that be nice? If we could just get over it?

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Ditto again....I was seeking out older people to hang out with most of my life. I was also attracting unhealthy people into my life. Once I understood what was going on I was able to recognize when these things were happening and learned to avoid unhealthy people. Still trying to figure out how to make friends with healthy people though. Seems best to keep my past quiet but people always ask about my family which is tough to respond to. I've been trying to keep my answers vague.

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Isn't it interesting how many abusive parents that are also alcoholics seem to function well enough during hte day to hold a full-time job? My parents were the same way. They worked all day and then went to the bar after work to start their drinking binges and finished up at home until they usually passed out. The next day repeated the cycle. A doctor once explained to me that when alcoholics do that, the alcohol is in their system 24 hours a day, it never truly leaves their system. Interesting!

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My mother has been extremely mean to me for as long as I can remember. I had an adopted brother who died when he was 17, I was 5. One of the first mean comments that she said to me that has stuck with me for the last 25 years was "I wish you were never born." Another comment was "hopefully you will die like your brother." My mother and father divorced when I was 4. She started dating an alcoholic when I was 4 or 5, she also like to drink a lot. Many of nights as a child he would beat her, the police would come, he would go to jail, then she would beat me for it. I had a horrible childhood. When I was in school, teachers noticed things, I was sent to counselors, therapy and interviewed by law enforcement. Everytime my mother would threaten me that if I told, this or that would happen to me. I wanted to live with my father, but she had convinced me that he didn't want me, he wanted his 'whores' not kids. I was told horror stories of kids being sent away, locked in basements and beaten worse than I could ever imagine. To make matters more confusing, sometimes she could be nice to me. To most people on the outside looking in, they knew about the physical altercations between her and her boyfriend. As for my bruises, "you know how kids are, they fall, break things." This went on for years. At age 18 I left. I went to college, got into law enforcement and have done very well for myself. I'm married to a wonderful man, beautiful home and expecting my first child. I have maintained contact with my mother all of these years, I try to walk on egg shells with her. I try to never say anything that would irritate her or make her mad. She can't physically hurt me anymore, so its all verbal and emotional. I try to ignore it, but its been getting progressively worse for the last year. I have tried to rationalize this to myself saying, she's getting older, she is 70, maybe its dementia. I don't know what to think anymore. She will call me, screaming at me, because her and her boyfriend had an arguement, but somehow it ends up being my fault. I have tried just not taking her calls. She calls for hours, leaving messages like "i'm going to ruin your life", "I hope I don't wake up master." She is reffering to my husband when she says 'Master', he works shift work. Or she uses my 90 year old grandmothers health as a reason, in which I call back immediately to hear her tell me "you are a loser, a joke." or "your not a has been, your a never was." I wish I knew why she did this to me? Maybe I could better understand how to make it stop. It's been going on for over 25 years. I did tell her once, that if she knew what she was doing to me, she would quit. Her reply was "I have never done a thing to you." It amazes me, that her boyfriend has actually apologized to me for everything and told me he was proud that I turned out ok after all they put me through. Why can't she see what she does is wrong? What do I do? Do I change my number and ignore her? Or do I continue letting myself be hurt? I worry what she might say or do to my child once it is born. I'm sorry that it's so long, I just needed to get it out.

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