(first published Feb 2012)
Today I got an email notification that there was a new comment on a post from another blog I had subscribed to almost year ago. “Amy has posted a new comment” it said. Well, the Amy was me, and it wasn’t a new comment, it was my one and only comment on that post. Feeling there are no coincidences when weird things like this happen, I decided to re-read the post and blog about it.
The blog talks often about attachment, particularly in a Catholic context. I knew if I had subscribed to the comments, it must have been a post that particularly resonated with me. Too bad there was no new comment, just my humble mumblings! Here is the part from the post that really hit at the heart of what I think is going on with me still. I don’t know how to climb out by myself, and I don’t have time or resources (i.e. childcare, etc) to find a therapist that could deal *well* with me on this. Seriously, a therapist that is versed in attachment and would understand a Catholic mom of many and what that entails? Fuggedaboutit.
Another very significant way in which a child may become imprisoned within himself is through the shame that is the terrible consequence of toxic rupture.A toxic rupture occurs when the child experiences himself as rejected by his primary attachment figures (parents, older siblings, extended family members, teachers, coaches, parish priests, etc.) and must retreat to deep within himself to hide what is valuable and vulnerable. This is a prison of abject loneliness where he has locked himself away to defend against the onslaught of an affront to his littleness that is too much to bear. When these kinds of ruptures occur too frequently, a child can soon become imprisoned for life within a dark, small, empty cell that even he eventually forgets. Hidden from the light of day for too long, maturation and development into a healthy, holy adult is stunted. So long as he remains in this prison he will never know joy, peace or love. But a merciful visitation after such a rupture, a humble reconciliation, can free the child from this prison of isolation so that he can re-enter society and grow in knowledge and virtue.
Not to beat a dead horse (LOL isn’t that what this blog is all about?) but my life was one toxic rupture after another. My biological parents, my foster parents (yes, I was young, but still…)…then my parents’ parenting style involved giving me the cold shoulder when I did something they didn’t like, even if they told me it was OK first, even if it was out of my control. Love ya Mom and Dad, but that parenting style really wrecked havoc on a sensitive, young adoptee. I remember the *one time* my mom really and truly sympathized with me after some high school friends were cruel; it was such a balm to my soul I can recall it clearly to this day.
I was the kind of introverted kid who only had one or two good friends at a time, but I gave them my heart. For some reason, God only knows, those few friends also had a “weird” style of showing friendship…I guess like children and especially girls are wont to do — they would stop talking to me for weeks at a time, for no reason I could discern. Then “come back” to friendship like nothing had happened. Most other friends have fallen away as our beliefs diverged – it seems like nobody likes a Cruchy Con like another crunchy con – and I didn’t befriend those growing up (because I didn’t know ANY, lol).
These things taught me to ALWAYS guard my heart, to ALWAYS walk on eggshells. My husband (SAINT, I tell ya!!) will attest to this. Almost 18 years of marriage and I still only barely trust him. Which grieves him greatly, I know, but I don’t know HOW to trust. We were married when I was 25, so I’ve had 25 years of “weird parenting/friendships” to get over, and only 18 years of marriage to make up for it. Maybe when we’ve hit our silver anniversary things will change. Hope springs eternal. 😉
The above quote talks about how to remedy it in a child. I wonder if there is a fix in an adult who is long past the damaging events, long past the days when growing up is one’s job. ‘Cause the pain is still there.