This is a very personal post that I will be sharing with you. If you grew up in a very dysfunctional and violent household or extended family like I did or had a emotionally dysfunctional relationship you will be able to relate to every single word. You know how hard it is to break free from the scars and mindset we were conditioned to.
Self growth is a constant process for every human being but for the ones who grew up in a violent household, the challenge doubles.
UNDERSTAND THE REASON WHY…
This was an incredibly hard challenge for me. Trying to understand and forgive my parents for having damaged parts of my childhood and leaving scars that would last though my adulthood was no easy task. Actually just the thought of forgiving and let go was too painful. And that’s when I realized I was unconsciously holding on to it.
Trying to understand why they were violent with each other and consequently with me, lead me into a journey into the past and forced me to remember everything I wanted to forget. It was only when I tried to understand their childhood, their life and their struggles that I could finally understand why things were happening that way. They had lived in dysfunctional families too and that was all they knew. All they did was to unintentionally reproduce their limitations and mindsets on each other and on me.
Once you can take the extremely difficult task to dig into your family’s or your partner’s past, will you be able to see, the cycle of violence being repeated and the fact that they never stood up, turned them into victims of their own limitations. Stop that cycle, it’s in your hands now.
RECOGNIZE THE PATTERN
There’s always a pattern, ways in which we think and behave that limits ourselves and puts us in risk of falling for abusive relationships. It’s starts with a very limited sense of self love. When no one ever told you, as a child, that you were loved and wanted, your idea of self worth is extremely low. You grow up with a void and emptiness and a distorted view of your own value. A lot of abused people, often times females, tend to search for love and recognition in relationships that give them very little in return.
We see many cases of women who are beaten by their spouse over and over again and return to that relationship. We wonder: “doesn’t she see that person is only causing her pain and nothing will ever change?”No, she doesn’t see that because, although she suffers with the violence, she’s used to it, she has a certain tolerance to it, that’s all she knows. She can not even imagine herself in a relationship that will empower her and that is a very dangerous pattern.
Once you recognize there is a pattern, a mindset that doesn’t let you evolve and have the life and relationship you deserve, you’ll spend your life getting the same results over and over.
You’re not a victim any more, you’re not a defenseless child. You’re a grown up, free to break from the victim state of mind. There’s no reason or excuse to get stuck in a life that will never give you what you deserve. From now on, it’s up to you to break free from your past and design your future!
SEARCH FOR ROLE MODELS
Finding role models in the people who surround you might be incredibly challenging and sometimes even impossible, mostly because a lot of victims of violence tend to form relationships with people who offer them very little.
Fortunately we live at a time and age where you can search for support groups, either near by your city or village or online. We have a wide range of information through the internet, blogs, support groups, online magazines, videos, you name it. Find people who inspire you, people you’d like to mirror you life into and try to copy them. Try to see what worked for them, their strategies for self improvement.
Finding role models has been one of the most challenging things for me. I realized I surrounded myself with people with low self esteem, filled with negative and destructive thoughts about the world, life and about themselves. It took a lot of courage to pack my bags and literally move out of the city I was living at. I had to take the harsh decision of breaking from that toxic world 100% in a way I couldn’t go back in a time of weakness. I can tell you I’ve never returned.
PERCEPTIONS OF SELF WORTH AND SELF ESTEEM
I have to admit that for most of my teenage years I struggled with self esteem and self worth. I had a feeling I was born with so much potential and I had a greater propose in life, but I could not break free from the fact no one had ever told me I was special, loved or wanted. Actually, I always heard from my mother that I was a mistake and basically that the fact I was born ruined her life. She made me believe I was a loser and would never be someone. She blamed me for everything and I believed it. I didn’t even know I was an abused child till I entered Psychology School, where I started to get a grasp that…. emotional and physical abuse are not the norm. Since the abuse and violent always happened within closed doors, but in public we were the perfect family, I thought that other families had the same dynamic.
Traveling the world on my own has been my greatest teacher, my best school in life. I’m a traveler by heart and learned so much by meeting people from walks of life with different perspective on life and well being. Challenging my self and getting out of my comfort zone on a frequent basis have worked wonders for me. I believe everyone should try to travel alone, at least once in our life. You get to meet people who will inspire you. You’ll realize how much more potential you have, how you can take perfectly care of yourself and keep cool in every situation.
One thing I can guarantee you, you can rearrange your thoughts, upgrade your dreams and build amazing relationships with people and your community. Search for whatever method works out for you, what makes you feel empowered and dive in without fear!You have nothing to lose and everything to win! The world is waiting for you!
WHEN SEARCHING FOR A PARTNER
Raise your standards. Don’t settle for someone who brings you nothing new or rewarding to your life. Relationships are all about growth, love, empowerment and self discovering. Don’t bond over someone’s pain or emptiness. Don’t try to date someone who needs a mother or a friendly shoulder to cry. They have to deal with their own issues before entering a relationship. Search for someone who’s fully ready to share their life with you, to take your love to the next level. Make sure you have the same goals and dreams in mind.
Yara Coelho is the author of the travel & personal development blog “Heart of a Vagabond” she’s a solo female traveler, with a love for vegetarian food, natural medicines and ecology projects. She studied Psychology, just to find out the Freudian view of the world was too depressive, leading her on a Classical Chinese medicine and personal development journey. Follow her journey on Facebook