Author: osa

5 Dysfunctional Family Holiday Survival Tips

dysfunctional family holidayby Christina Enevoldsen with Bethany

If only I’d have known these family holiday survival tips years ago. When I remember holidays with my family, I think of stress. The image that comes to mind is everyone else laughing and having a great time, while I was miserable. I don’t remember many holidays as a child, but as an adult, holidays used to be times of emotional abuse from my parents, mostly my dad, and from my ex-husband.

While we were married, the usual pattern for my ex was to work up my emotions right before we arrived at my parents’ house. He’d feign a misunderstanding or falsely accuse me of something or criticize me–whatever would upset me. By the time we arrived, I’d be on the verge of tears or I’d be angry. Then my parents would correct my bad attitude and all three of them would join against me for ruining the special day.

What We Wish Our Parents Understood About Our Sexual Abuse

What We Wish Our Parent Knew About Our Sexual AbuseOne of the deepest sources of pain for sexual abuse survivors is the lack of support from family members, especially from parents. Over and over again, survivors of abuse have expressed the feeling that as destructive as sexual abuse is, it’s the abandonment and betrayal of their parents that hurt the most.

Conversely, when a child is believed and supported in childhood, the effects of the abuse are significantly diminished. Many parents don’t learn about the abuse until their child is grown, but understanding and support remain important even for adult survivors.

We asked survivors to share their stories and feelings about their abuse and the rejection of their parents. This is a collection of their thoughts, from their hearts, in their own words.

When An Abuser Dies

When an Abuser Dies

A few months ago, I got word from a family member that my paternal grandmother was found unconscious in the middle of the night and rushed to the hospital. She had suffered a brain hemorrhage and was on a ventilator as her heart rate began to slow. The doctors weren’t optimistic that anything could be done.

I didn’t know her well. I spent a summer visiting my father’s parents when I was ten but the rest of my relationship with them was quick phone calls throughout my childhood. As my grandma got older, she began to forget who I was, so our relationship dwindled in my teens.

Years ago, my dad told me that both of his parents had sexually abused him. When he was eight years old, they took him into their bedroom and taught him to have sex with his mother while my grandfather watched. What they did to him made me sick and angry with my grandparents.

The Fear of Being Re-victimized

by Christina Enevoldsen & Bethany Childhood sexual abuse often leaves the survivor vulnerable to more abuse and afraid of being victimized again. In this ten minute audio discussion, Christina Enevoldsen and Bethany share how they turn their violations in adulthood

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