Adult Children of Abusive Parents, Siblings, Or Other Family Relatives
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Articles by Patricia Jones, M.A.
There is a way out of being continually abused by your family or siblings or other relatives. If you would like some help and advice on how to do that please contact me.
Patricia Jones, M.A.
Copyright © 2006 - 2014 Dove Christian Counseling Center. All Rights Reserved
This topic is one of the most difficult ones to face for most adults who were abused as children. And the reason is because that abuse has affected us for the rest of our lives. Some of us are just now coming to the realization that we were abused as children and we are now in our late 40's, 50's, and even 60's.
Our lives have been difficult and we have always wondered why everything we tried usually turned out badly or in some way we got hurt. So we began to think that we were just destined by God to be on the low end of the totem pole, and that we have spent our lives almost succeeding, but never quite making it.
We also have noticed that whenever we are around our parents or siblings, or other relatives we are always misunderstood, blamed for things we never said or did, are left out of the family loop, and are always the last one to know what is going on in our families.
Family holidays and gatherings always turn into someone getting mad at us, or gossiping about us, or just plain acting like they can't stand us. And we do nothing to trigger any of this disrespectful treatment. It is like we are a "target" and are always " under attack" by those who are supposed to support and love us the most.
We notice that our parents or one of our parents treats us differently than they do our brothers or sisters. It is as if this parent almost hates us. And yet, out of all the siblings we are the ones who accomplished the most, and never got into trouble like they have.
You are so used to this bad treatment of you, that you hardly even notice it anymore and it takes a good friend to point out to you how horribly your own family treats you. Suddenly you come to the realization that you were abused as a child, and that this abuse is continuing into your adult years as well.
And with this knowledge you feel like a huge weight has been lifted off your shoulders because you now can put a "name" to what has been happening to you your entire life when it comes to relating to your family of origin.
You have always known that something was terribly wrong with your family and that it was almost evil how they treat you but you could never figure out why.
How many of the questions below can you answer "yes" to?
1.) Do you recall being abused by a parent, sibling, or another relative which still continues to this day?
2.) Have you been called names, screamed at, or been ordered around?
3.) Do you seem to get blamed for any disagreements or fights in your family when they were started by or caused by the other person but they are considered the innocent one?
4.) Are your relationships within your family basically one-way with you doing all of the giving and the others doing all of the taking?
5.) Have you felt manipulated, controlled, criticized, humiliated, insulted, betrayed or abandoned by someone you loved?
6.) Have your children disowned you? Or has anyone else in your family disowned you or written you off and you have done nothing to deserve it?
7.) Have you been cut out of the will?
8.) Have you been slandered, gossiped about, lied to, been lied about, and been called mentally ill?
9.) Do you feel like you have been crucified and judged unfairly without even a jury?
10.) Are you always having to defend yourself or feel like you are "on the defense" when around your family?
11.) Have you been disrespected, demeaned, made fun of, sabotaged, or been the target of jealousy or envy from a parent or a sibling?
12.) Are you always taking care of others while your own needs are being ignored?
13.) Are you thinking of cutting your family off from any more contact from you?
14.) Have you been promised things that never happened and then told that your expectations are too high?
15.) Have you tried to set boundaries with your relatives only to have them refuse to accept them and then blame you for the abuse that you receive from them and they say you "bring it on yourself?"
16.) Do other relatives look the other way or even justify the abusers when you are being abused?
17.) When you finally begin standing up for yourself does your family get angry and tell you to "Let go of the past?"
18.) If you are being abused by someone in your family do you find that your siblings, and parents take the side of the abuser?
19.) Did these same people tolerate and accept the abuser's behavior, standing by silently while you were victimized, possibly for many years, and now the only disapproval they have ever voiced is aimed at you, for trying to protect yourself?
'When my father and mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up'.....Psalm 27:10KJV.
'Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands'......Isaiah 49: 15-16NIV.