Children Need SupportAug 09, 2023
Content warning: This post includes mentions of child abuse, trauma, and mental health issues.
Written by a CSUCI student.
Every day since I was born seemed to be toxic and filled with worry. My family was extremely broken from a very young age. My earliest memories are of being 2 or 3 years old. It’s funny how our greatest memories are usually the worst. I recall punishments that included being held over the upstairs balcony from my ankles by my father to things like belt whooping. My mother was afraid of my father, she used to sleep with me and lie to him saying I was scared and that I needed her.
Often my mother would whisper that she would give me a cookie if I came in and slept in their bed. My sisters and brother all had similar experiences and were often worried about getting in trouble with Dad. At 4 years old my parents went through a divorce and my parents HATED each other to the core. My father was a very angry man and his upbringing was much worse than mine, I was told as I got older. Regardless of what they went through I feel both of my parents failed my siblings and me tremendously.
After the divorce, they split custody of us and we continued dealing with my angry father, but now alone. My dad often took us to parties and put us in very adult situations as young kids. We had to hear bad things about our dad from our mom and bad things about our mom from our dad every single week for years. My two older sisters got the worst of it and I feel this made them who they are today. My sisters are extremely depressed individuals who have a hard time functioning in society. I am the third child and I was most definitely the mediator for EVERYONE. My younger brother was the only boy, so he got a whole other kind of abuse than us girls. He had to “be a man” or was called girly names while us girls were “too fat” or “lesbians” because we didn’t have boyfriends by age 13.
My mother was not innocent in any of this. I completely blame both of my parents for the trauma they caused all of us. Now this is all just to give you an idea of my life without going into too much detail. My siblings and I suffer from a lot of anxiety and depression issues. Each one of us is struggling to get through life even coming into our 30’s. Our childhood has affected our mental health to this day.
All of the events we suffered trauma from are lingering because they are not being talked about or worked through. Traumas need to be addressed in order to start healing. People like us are experiencing lifelong depression due to our past and often, many don’t even realize it. In order to stop this pattern, I’ve realized I need help. We can’t do this alone; I encourage you all to reach out for support. You may not have had it when you needed it, but it's available now. Learning to love ourselves and create the support we need for our own lives is possible.
If you or someone you know needs mental health support, visit 211 Ventura County for a list of local resources.