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It used to be that the internet me was often an idealized version of myself, but at ENA I'm more real than I am anywhere in the physical world. Even then, I'm only myself in my tiny dark little corner where I hold a tiny candle for others like me who might want some comfort. I don't even keep a fully public journal because I've been so afraid to really open up. Now I feel like I could start over and be more open to begin with. I've come a really long way! I don't feel like I have all these incompatible facets of myself competing for authenticity. It's been such a blessing to have been able to create even such a small place for myself where even though I allowed my vulnerability to be seen, I could protect myself from any threats to my barely sprouting little seed of autonomy and selfhood. I guess it's pretty obvious that I never should have been so fragile in the first place, but I really honesly just didn't know any better.


I was kind of looking forward to filling this journal up with new thoughts. On the other hand, I really don't know if I should keep a journal here anymore. It seems like a bad idea to start a 'regular' journal here when I have my private, most intimate experiences linked to my account for literally the whole world to find. When it comes to my private thoughts, this isn't exactly the best format for me to express myself. Basically, I'm just limited to typing stuff and embedding pics/videos. I don't intend to use this like a tumblr or blog or anything, and I don't feel that comfortable sharing my thoughts in this way without having more control over the templates and stuff. Before, I had a reason not to want to be alone, to want my story to be heard and not swept under the rug the way it is in my real life where no one, literally no one really gives a single about what really happened to me and will never know or care, let alone ask.


The anxiety that my anonymity could be compromised and those other factors is making me think that I need to move on. I don't think I could interact comfortable on this site having my trauma journals linked to all my other responses. It just isn't comfortable for me because I always assume I'll be judged negatively or misunderstood for it.


Saying goodbye to ENA for real seems like such a tough decision though. I have been meoww for so long. My journals were so instrumental to my healing. It seems like it's time to take the training wheels off but I wonder if I'm just carelessly throwing a part of myself away that really needs to stay.


But I don't think so...lt's become my last link to my suffering. It will be so weird to let go of it. It will really be a new beginning. Instead of blaming myself and forcing myself to have that survivor label on me at all times, it's kind of like transgender people who get gender reassignment who don't go around telling every person that meet their whole ordeal. At some point, you just have to start living the life you intended to have and that you finally got for yourself.

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I will always cherish these journals because it gives me such a thoughtful window into how I was at certain periods of time in my life. I think I'll always keep a journal somewhere. It's really cool being able to recall thoughts and experiences that you have totally forgotten. I'm glad I filled my journals with my thoughts and inner monologue because I would have lost that forever. I mean it's not like it's all gold but sometimes I forget some really important stuff.


It's interesting that even before I learned to stand up for myself in the real world, the intention was there for maybe even years before. When I look back on my first journals I'm surprised that I've been pretty self aware all along, because inside I've been so unsure of myself. I'm surprised I even demonstrated such sound judgement. Internally I may feel so different on a weekly basis but overall the tone of my journals has been somewhat consistent, even redundant lol.


It's so weird!! Ahh

How do I express what I'm really going through?


I don't know what to do right now. Like part of me wants to embrace the people with the threads that don't get many replies and all the abuse survivors on this site and be like, I'll be there for you! Look at me, I'm such a success story. But another part of me definitely doesn't want to do that. There are tons of really strong and sweet people who are way stronger than me and give better advice on here. So it's not like I really need to be here...


This year is different from all the others. It's the first year that my trauma is becoming a memory. I don't react to photos of my abusers. I don't feel much. I don't feel all guilty and horrible all the time.


In 3 years, I've painstakingly collected evidence of my abuse, documented my healing process, laid the foundation for my stability and happiness, cut off negative people, and now I'm like a shiny little spokeswoman for surviving abuse and living to tell the tale without being exiled from society.

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I didn't look at a single photo of my father for almost 7 years. I saw one on fb today. I seriously just thought, he kind of just looks the same. I didn't feel like his broken soul was going to bore into me, overwhelm me with guilt and sadness. I'm pretty sure none of his kids (my half-siblings that I never really knew) are in contact with him. He's what some people call an ignoring narcissist. He makes new friends like every year when he has a fallout with someone else. I was surprised to see he has kept some old friends. Maybe he's mellowed out slightly. Unlike my other abuser he has a cheerful side to his personality and has his own sense of self, and hobbies. He's not engulfing. Funny how men often are just not like that, to make a blanket statement. I could almost forgive him and have a casual relationship. I don't remember the horrible things he did to me and never took responsibility for anymore. He's just like a little old man now, he can't hurt anyone anymore.


A memory, finally I don't feel raw. That's what it is. I had two weeks off and in those two weeks my abusers truly became strangers to me.


I won!!! Time and actually fighting every day for my release from my internal hell.


I never took them to court. No one cares what they did except for me and whoever I'm having sex with on a regular basis. Lovely. This is reality but I'm going to just have to take it. This is my happy ending. To just "get over it" like anybody I ever told said I should. And nothing will change. Except for that fact that I'm not vulnerable anymore, I'm not traumatized anymore and I can pretend I'm someone who had a beautiful upbringing. That is such a quiet triumph, trumpeting a victory only I can hear.


To all the folks who victim blame, all a victim wants is for the person who hurt them to acknowledge the truth. Yes the truth! There is such a thing. It's not subjective.They just need that person to take responsibility, even for a moment.



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  • 1 month later...

If you can fall from grace you never really had it.


Sometimes it can be really hard to want it so much, when I'm lacking the ubiquitous natural grace I see every day from people on the street. I know I don't know what they're really thinking, but even the idea of their pain seems beautifully quaint, and so neatly contained, so acceptable. Way, way back before my recovery, I lived my double life, 'normal' to the outside world and somehow I had always felt I knew what normal was. I wonder how I believed I could know so much about something I had never experienced firsthand. It wasn't the double life I thought I was living. My double life wasn't working for me because I wasn't who I was supposed to be. I didn't have my own individual grace. I lived in a very hollow, restricted bad dream. That was my normal, simply because it was like night and day compared to my hell at home.


I'm telling myself this often because every so often I feel like I've lost a part of me, when I think it's more productive for me to feel that I haven't gained my true self in its entirety yet.


You can't lose yourself. If you have a self, you have it. I have to bring it out. I have felt such grief at not knowing what it is like to be a 'real' human. Real people can have all these strong convictions, can be so harsh in their temperament when in pursuit of the good. I can't be like that because I know what it's like to exist outside of the norm, not by choice but by inheritance. How can I exclude myself from what is considered acceptable? I would love to feel righteous lol...


They color in the lines. They have painted a picture whereas all I've done is buy my little crayon set. Now I'm learning about the color wheel. Which would be great if I was a five year old.

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Jotting down a little thought I had so I don't forget:


I used to think that it was my abuser's communication style that was abusive. That their way of dealing with conflict was flawed. But now in the light I've realized just how like 95% of it was all manufactured conflict that originated not from the two of us interacting but from their disordered, sometimes delusional, thoughts and perceptions. Closer to red herrings

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Another quick observation I had about coping mechanisms


If there are any survivors out there who are early in their healing process I just want to say, taking a lot of time to reflect and recover isn't admitting defeat or being weak. If you develop strong coping mechanisms, it's going to make your life easier in every possible way. Work will be more manageable, you'll handle conflict with people much more effectively, you won't have as many regrets. So even if you're like me, which you probably aren't as clueless as I was/am, and have to face that painful realization that you kind of, in a way, were born into a curse, focus on lifting it. If you don't it's always going to make your life a lot worse than it should be.


These days thats how I'm looking at things. Less focus on grieving process because I went through that, and more about building my life.


Even if psychologically, I guess you could say, I have nothing. It really is like learning to write with your non dominant hand. When I allow myself to be at that really basic level, it makes it easier to take everything one step at time. And the irony is that then it starts to come more and more naturally.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Rough Draft of Thank You letter:


It must be strange, having a grown adult come to you and say you saved her life. As it stands, you now know me better than anyone has ever known me, not even the people in my life who had ever claimed to be in love with me and want the best for me. You have given me everything. I wonder if you know that you didn't have to do anything for me, no one ever has. More than your selflessness, I am so grateful for your way of supporting me in a way that has helped me understand the world and my myself in a way that I honestly could have never imagined. Is it because you're brave? Words are failing me because I feel like the way my life has changed goes much deeper than words.


You have done something heroic, even if all you did was give life to a helpless orphaned woman. Who knows how many more decades I could have waited for someone else's altruism? I had gone 20 years without it, it's not inconceivable that I could have suffered forever.


I can, however, express my gratitude in words. You knew exactly what to say to make me feel like a good person. I had been broken to the point that any skepticism regarding my abuse could hurt me beyond repair. Any skepticism at all would make me feel like the world was a poisonous and overwhelming place.


Although I wonder if no person who abandons their family can escape the consequences and eventual punishment for breaking the most sacred bond there is, I will continue to search for the answers about why I have given the life that I have.


Most importantly, I wanted to give you some of that unconditional acceptance back, even if you don't need it from me, and more than that, I hope that I can play a part in helping you also feel that you love yourself without condition. I hope that you are truly proud of your own goodness and shining light. In my life, I will always remember how the light of true living fell upon me from you.


It's a miracle in my eyes! I am so excited for the things I think are about to happen in my life. I can't even imagine what it will be like to live a positive life.


You deserve the best and I hope you continue to go out and get it. Never let anything stand in your way. I was practically a stranger to you and you renewed my spirit. I am in awe of that.

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Part of why it feels like such a miracle is that I had never had an honest conversation with anyone before. So being on that level with you feels almost magical, or surreal. Once you say something so real, it seems to make change and growth happen, make certain wishes finally come true. I have never been honest with anyone. Even therapists seemed like they lacked the wisdom to help me because they lived in a very different world than I did. The only way I could heal was to radically transform my understanding of morality and the meaning of my humanity. You stand with me in saying we are lost and trying to understand why we live. Everything is easier because I have said all the things I was afraid to say or think and when said those things, there was actually someone who knew. You know what is real. From that point forward, I think my whole life has finally become real, if that makes any sense. I have learned from you how to only reveal my true self to the right people. I don't mind it anymore, I don't feel alone and angry anymore.


It's only the beginning, and so I can't really speak of the changes I am going to go through. As you can see, I am so excited, so completely saturated with happiness. I wish I could tell you what I will come to know someday. This is as far as I can go for now in my understanding.


Can you see how my gratitude will continue to echo like a voice in a canyon, forever. I have to silence myself or I'll never stop, but it will be in the air eternally.

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The tables have turned so completely, and it's like I literally I can't go backwards, it's like that kid's game that certain things are hot lava, I'm not about to get burned.


When I started writing this, I thought of my old work bullies, my mothers disloyal and unpredictable minions, how I wanted to smugly put them in their place now that I know I was right and that people actually support me. I finally feel confident in labeling them as kind of angry and repressed people, thinking about makes me stressed even if I may never see them again.


On some level that toxicity is addictive for me. Big revelation there. I am addicted to toxic people, how I perceived their limitations and flaws, and their shame. Even when I go no contact, I check up on them on the internet and in my head I'm still stoking the fires. A mix of pity and incredulousness, like how is it possible you live in your tunnel vision when I see so much happiness everywhere. Just like when I cut ties with my toxic friends. I wanted to treat them as equals, ie have same expectations I would have for others I love and respect, can't do that but the love for them is still there but I don't try to connect with them because I know I'll just be hurt and start to feel disillusioned as a whole which is an horrible way to live. Boundaries drawn, expectations revised, sanity preserved, and much better connections made. Life restored.


Even if on some level I know "they" are just taking their problems out out on me because I found a way out and they haven't, I still hold such resentment. I wonder why? I know it used to be mostly shamed based, like how dare you shame me, but part of it comes now from a desire to get them back. Like, I was right all along, and I have been thinking how amazing it would be just to let them know I know I have/ have had the moral high ground and now everyone knows it. Even if that doesn't qualify as revenge. My idea of revenge is so much more gentle than their bullying and yet they think of themselves so highly. They live in such a bizarre world. Seriously scary how I started to see things the way they did from being around them too much.


My main issue is that they found out, and expected me not be traumatized at all. Even though I never talk about my abuse, I put on my happy face, I don't act like a victim. But they knew how hurt I was inside and like fed on it like vampires.


Deciding to leave/recognizing the problem is only the first step. Some people act like abuse is like being a fish out of water, put the "fish" back in the tank and everything will be fine. I used to to think that too, and I'd be so hard on myself because being a normal human was so incomprehensible to me. It seems like common sense to avoid these awful kind of people but


For me, they are similar to my mother, I just feel obligated to help them and most importantly:


Believe their version of events

Give more weight to their perceptions instead of mine

Distrust my own thoughts, instincts

Believe that their negativity was somehow a good thing that I'm doing the right thing by sticking it out


I don't anymore, not at all, and my life is completely different.

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Exactly. I know I'm going in the wrong direction when:


I give more weight and credibility to people who shouldn't have it, and diminish myself in return.


I have often bent over backwards to accommodate people even when they lie! How does that help anyone?


All because I had desperately tried to believe that is how you show respect even to the most dysfunctional and unconscious people. I always thought I'd go to hell if I didn't do that. That it was disrespectful to know that they might be wrong, how could I be so presumptuous, yet I'm exactly that in so many other ways, you have to make assumptions to live even if they aren't always right,


I'm so simple minded sometimes lol

It takes me a while to grasp these complexities.

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Wanted to share this amazingly effective but cheesy new age thing that I do (but it actually works!)


It's called cutting attachment cords or energy cords


You metaphorically cut cords of energy between you and someone else you don't want to be connected to anymore.


I mean, I really think attachment is a real thing. It is a long term thing that really effects our decision making and perception.


It's pretty refreshing to do this in a somewhat ritualized manner. It is most apparent the first time I think, when you first feel that release.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I know how to live in the moment pretty well. It's just that these moments don't seem to add up to anything. I see other people living like this too, we're just killing time. I guess that's fine, it's just that when you're younger you don't realize that all this killing time never ends. Sometimes I feel like I need an alternative. I can't live like this. The problem is that I don't know. I was so stupid for ever thinking I was a traditionally minded person when I'm clearly nothing like that.


Sometimes I wish nothing had to change. I like who I'm becoming. I don't want to become totally irrelevant and forgotten someday. This is who I am, I can't see myself in the future, all weirdly disconnected from reality, wrinkled hands, wearing weird ill fitting clothing, aches and pains, friends and family dropping like flies. What a way to go....please don't let this happen to me. And all the stuff in between, i picture this horrible montage of having some lame husband who 'adores' me but watches teen porn all the time, has fantasies about all women he works with, doesn't necessarily act on it but he gets into close calls, and all along all of us knowing the truth of our dissatisfaction with our lives but only barely skimming the surface of our lost desires. I don't think that's going to be me. So many things to worry about on my slow march to death. Haha


Raising kids who see me as their personal ATM, but dress it up like, occasionally offering their affection in return. Mom, you mean so much to me, can you buy me this 500 dollar dress for prom. And everyone around me being like, meoww, that's just reality. This is real life. I have a house, paying for a decent education for my family, hobbies and disposable income. I am preoccupied with my friends, their lives, their acquisitions, their sex lives, their children.


Maybe there is no alternative.....


I don't want to just be some soccer mom with Skrillex as my soundtrack instead of Lady Gaga. I don't want to be a cool mom...What is wrong with me.


What am I afraid of?

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It's almost hilarious how I have no idea what is acceptable or not acceptable anymore. I used to have this feeling that I understood what other people expected or me, now I feel so disconnected from that. Either because I find their expectations unpalatable or because I'm clueless. But i bet on the outside I seem like I never think about anything so deep. Who knows though. I miss having people tell me who they thought I was, even if I thought they were wrong. Eh actually I don't miss that what am I saying.


This is why thinking is useless. I don't get anywhere. Yet that's not even true either. It's just a painfully slow process.


I have to be stealthy. I have to be smarter. I have to be more independent and stronger. I have to keep looking for answers on my own time and coming from the right mindset.

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I wonder if this is true. I've spent the last 3 years trying to know about so many different people's lives, how they save money, what memories they make, how they walk, how they take photographs, what their expectations are, what kind of emotions they have. Obsessively collecting all kinds information about so many types of people suburban, wealthy, middle class, lower class, spanning a few different continents. Because I didn't know how I could make myself if I didn't very much about this reality that's created by like billions of people.


I changed so much but I guess in some ways I have to admit defeat in that I did just become 10000000x just more of who I am. But I can't fathom what happens tp an adult 'soul' that doesn't try to be elastic and change in every possible way that it can. Does it just open up and become free anyway? Is that just one of the privileges of making to this age?


We all seem have found peace but I just can't shake the feeling

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The puzzle box says 3 years. i finished it in 10. I have to do the weirdest things with my mind just to coax it into acting normal.


Originally I just wanted to be happy. If that meant being poor, I was kind of okay with it. I think I don't need be happy anymore, or well I'm less deathly afraid of not being on cloud nine all the time. Am I seriously a complete idiot? I don't mean to be 'bi polar' I just assumed you had to be floating on a cloud to matter in life.


Like maybe I can't change....I just want certain things.


I also have this fear now. That I'm closer to death because I'm at peace with dying, not desiring anything, not needing validation, not even from men! I have NEVER been like this. I don't want to be like this haha. But I hate it in a way, knowing I'm okay with failure. I guess that is changing. AGAIN. Just not in this frantic, confused, self hating way.


Or I wonder if the awareness I have outside myself that I developed by 'being' so many other people is just something other people have always had, or if it is like 50/50 of other people. I used to feel like so proud of who I was. Maybe I am just childish....


Can't shake the feeling that I will never want to trust them. That they will always be two steps behind me. How do they seem so immature. Not just that. I can't stand being around people who are not wise. Like literally not wise. I get so impatient and frustrated....

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Here's a concrete goal I have that I NEED to accomplish.


I still secretly compete with a few people I 'hate' from high school by blocking them on instagram and checking up on them to make sure I feel superior. It is seriously destroying my soul. I neurotically check constantly to make they haven't changed or improved. I need to realize I have no control over their lives, absolutely none. I need to just let go.


I hate it, it's so compulsive and unhealthy. People I really don't have all that much in common with. I just get so scared that they'll have everything I worked so hard to get, just handed to them. Which is dumb, i respect them....it's not even like they want to be like me.

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I just have to force myself to stop....


I just imagine it would be such a blow to my pride if i saw them looking like drop dead gorgeous and being perfect.


It sounds so evil. But it is only because they really hurt me.

Everyone should be happy anyway. They probably are happy.


Ahhhh it's my curiosity is only going to get worse as they 'improve' in the future

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Ok i need to accept


People are super competitive and once they sense themselves losing their edge they will rebrand themselves. I CANT control that.


A level playing field, that is what everyone should have. This is what the future is supposed to look like. Everyone realizing their potential. Even the ones who hold the keys to our pandoras boxes of fear, hurt, shame, guilt.


I need to view them the way I would view a stranger. Appreciate the beautiful lives they lead, and go on with my own.


Although I still think its so weird that I'm so different from them, how clearly I never belonged....it's like, why?...

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This whole mess never would have happened if I just could have been born somewhere else at a different time lol. It literally makes more sense that way. It's the weirdest feeling in the world making those changes yourself instead having them just naturally be part of your life.

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Like once upon a time I was this insecure and scared little girl and they just fed on it. Made things worse. Not even like totally 100% their responsibility. But people do often have an investment in pointing out our flaws if they have known us in our most vulnerable hours. I remind myself of their weaknesses to comfort myself at times. But thats only in reaction go them. I guess I really am just a nicer person hahaha. It's true. Again why?? Why am I so much nicer hahaha. It's horrible.


I may have been nicer but I was definitely stupider when it comes to common sense. That mystery is never going to be solved.

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Okay wow...so i think I'm having that final closure issue! This understanding of my own emotional responses/triggers to past hurts is making me realize I am afraid still to let go. Its like frozen is a psa for people like me. Born with an unidentifiable curse. That always happens, these things are so timely...


Closure is the finish line. I'm afraid that there is nothing on the other side.

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I'm afraid of being hurt again aren't I. Plain and simple.


I'm afraid that I could be happy too. That I even deserve to be happy.


I'm afraid that I was right. I'm afraid that I'm doing what is best for me.


I'm afraid of how well I take care of myself in a way, how strong I am, how much hope i have, how hard I work every single second even if a lot of the time I'm running in circles.


I'm afraid that I have my little slice of where I belong. Afraid to be swallowed up into life and belonging and forgetting all the people I met along the way. That I really will forget them and that it was all temporary.

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Everybody hurts from that, in a way. I feel guilty for wanting to say goodbye, and guilty for slamming the door on my past. I feel ungrateful. I feel weak. I feel stupid for not being able to put it all together. I feel so bad that I want to be someone completely different.

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Strangers get our understanding and compassion on a daily basis. They create what is social, the opposite of heavy, intimate. That is what is amazing about surfaces, they are just so forgiving. If a person you hate becomes a stranger, they seem so good all of a sudden. In some cases you are tempted to look beneath the surface again. I need different strangers and different intimates. I had mine reversed.


I've reached the right conclusion, I'm glad I finally did it without pointing fingers, not too much anyway. Sometimes even the truth is lost when you leave the past behind. The truth keeps binding you to your history, to emotions that keep you down. Please make the nightmare go away. Please. It's funny what is a very pleasant life to some is an absolute terror to me. Strangers, people that I give the benefit of the doubt to.

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