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Archive for June 25th, 2009

On my blog entry entitled Traveling the Child Abuse Healing Journey Together, a reader posted the following comment:

I’ve wondered if you experience repeated messages in your spirit – mine have told me to die over and over. Some time ago I read about being brain-washed by ritual abusers primarily to prevent telling. I recognize some of this in my past experiences but it befuddles me that messages may still exist. Lately I have spoken to my brain quite forthrightly trying to “change” the messages and it has worked to a slight degree. I wake up without fail around three AM each morning. Lately I’ve been telling myself that is not necessary and direct my brain to sleep through the night. I’m curious if you suffer from such messages. And if these messages become more dominant during these ritual abuse “holidays.” ~ Esther

Yes, I have struggling with dismantling quite a bit of “programming” or “brain-washing” – whatever you want to call it. And, yes, the programming tends to kick in at certain times, particularly when I feel unsafe, such as around occult holidays.

For example, I was suicidal as a teenager. I used to think about how I wanted to die, and I settled upon swallowing a jar of pills – just go to sleep and never wake up. My father (the “good” parent) died suddenly when I was a senior in high school, and my mother started sexually abusing me again. I became suicidal again. However, this time, I knew exactly how to do it (and almost did!).

I locked myself in my mother’s bathroom (ah, the symbolism) with a razor. I wanted to “slash my wrists” and “watch the lifeblood flow out of me.” How many seventeen-year-old girls have any idea what “lifeblood” is? There was no choice or decision. This was “programmed” into me – to self-destruct to “protect” the cult.

I was also “programmed” to self-injure through head-banging. I endured numerous difficult life experiences – child abuse, losing my father, infertility procedures, the adoption process – and yet I never self-injured other than one isolated incident when I clawed up my arm … but that’s another story. I even went through a year of therapy – dealing with heavy issues surrounding mother-daughter sexual abuse, etc. – with no self-injury.

As soon as I started to recover memories of the ritual abuse, I started banging my head. I forced myself to use a pillow, but I was “programmed” to bang my head into a wall – not just any wall but a particular brick wall. I can still see it in my head – it was sloppily put together with the mortar in blobs of dried cement. When that part of myself is triggered, I “need” to bang my head into that wall.

This blog entry is getting long, so I will wait until tomorrow to talk about what Chrystine Oksana has to say about programming in her book, Safe Passage to Healing.

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt

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