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By | June 21, 2012 26 Comments

LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: Can you help a woman who is trying to hold on?

Editor’s note: I received this email a few days ago from a Lovefraud reader, whom we’ll call “Larissa.” At first I declined to publish it, because Larissa is raw with pain, to the point of seriously considering suicide, and I was afraid that it would trigger other readers. She said she was going to a hospital for help, if she could find someone to watch her dogs.

Well, she found a dog-sitter. She went to the hospital. The hospital sent her home, telling her to see a psychiatrist.

This woman is in need of support. She needs to be heard. She needs to be understood. Therefore, I am publishing her letter. If you are raw with pain yourself, it is probably best that you don’t read it. But if you are healed enough and strong enough to offer support, please provide some kind words to Larissa.

Suicide risks in the aftermath

What is it really like to be in Post Traumatic Stress mode? A horrible thing happened (I was denied access to my granddaughter because I finally got angry with her guardian (a step grandparent) for not taking her to a counselor after 3 years of sexual abuse by a man I BROUGHT INTO HER LIFE. I’ve waited a year and she still has not made a move to get my granddaughter any help. This scares me, she may end up like me and that is a horrible thought.

Okay ”¦ so this is what PTSD feels like in case anyone can relate ”¦ and I sort of just need to be heard right now.

1. It is my fault I brought the man into my granddaughter’s life. I am the worst kind of grandmother one can have if I can’t even protect her when I myself was sexually molested at puberty. Why didn’t I watch more closely?

2. I should never have disagreed with the step grandmother about counseling because I was putting my relationship with my granddaughter at risk. I always fk things up and end up on the losing end of the stick. I am worthless to my granddaughter because I can’t seem to keep her safe or get my point across about her needing counseling without offending the whole damn world! My mouth in “speaking up” has gotten me in so much trouble throughout my life you would think I would learn to just shut up and let life be ”¦ let it all go ”¦ let it roll off my back things that have been said to me over and over again such as when I say stuff like my stepfather was molesting me, my mom was abusing me, my dad was freaking crazy and torturing all of his kids emotionally and physically; and MY GRANDDAUGHTER NEEDS COUNSELING SO SHE DOES NOT END UP LIKE ME, wanting to die ”¦ hating myself. Blaming myself. And the tapes play on and on ”¦

Intellectually there is a disconnect in me. I feel unloved, unwanted, worthless, ugly, wouldn’t be missed, and a bother to society at large. I find it very difficult to ask for help because, frankly, I’m just not worth anyone’s time.

Now, that sounds like a freaking victim mentality if you ask me. So, now I hate myself for being such a wimpy victim.

Tapes tapes tapes tapes ”¦ playing in my head all day and all night long for going on 3 weeks now. Things my mother and siblings have said to me ”¦ how wrong I am. How I should just shut the f up! Finally the step-grandmother let me (grudgingly) talk to my granddaughter and did I hear a tone of I HATE YOU NANA and this is a real bother to have to sit and talk to you on the phone!! Now I’m paranoid too!!! Or maybe she is fed up with me or was alienated against me by her step-grandmother. Who knows? I JUST KNOW I KNOW NOTHING WHEN IN THIS MODE OF BAD THINKING.

I can’t stop it. It’s like telling a manic person to stop being manic. It’s not the type of mental illness that warrants pills because I know this will pass (hopefully soon because I’m becoming unglued completely). This is one of the longest stints of PTSD I think I have ever had since my son died. In that case I tried to kill myself over 10 times unsuccessfully. Rotten mother. Let’s her kid die!! I raised him to drive dangerously! The doctor told my husband that one day I will succeed. My condition is terminal he said! Like a cancer.

The disconnect is the reality. I raised my son to love me and he had a healthy self-esteem before he died at age 25. The accident was not his fault. I was married for 25 years, mostly happy, and had an excellent career where I often felt so much gratitude for my good fortune. I’ve been told and I see in pictures that I am an attractive woman. I wrote a BOOK something so many people would dream to do but never get that opportunity. I have friends that have stuck around me for years and they do not hurt me they support me. But no amount of “talk therapy” helps me. What I need is to be put away until the PTS leaves.

I hate the hospital. And what will I do with my 2 Maltese dogs? I love them too much to leave them alone (my granddaughter is not alone so won’t miss me). I have no one who can take my dogs for me while I recover in hospital; believe me I’ve tried.

So, none of these thoughts milling about and banging around in my head are true. Yes they are. No they are not. On and on like waterboard torture. I can’t sleep. I can’t shower. I can’t make a meal unless it goes in the microwave. I can’t take care of business. I lay on the sofa and dream of ways I can die as painlessly as possible (Forget the pills, I’ve been to that rodeo before and it has never worked. I looked it up on the internet and it turns out the magnitude of pills you have to ingest has to be enormous if you really want to die. Where am I going to get all of them?)

THINK THINK THINK. I’ve spent hours researching ways to die. Last week it was to lay on the road and wait for a truck to roll over me but I don’t want to damage the driver so forget that.

Stuffing clothes in my exhaust pipes is too risky ”¦ might not work and am not going to fail this time.

When you hate yourself so much (and I do not hate myself all the time, only when I am having a PTSD episode) you feel the world could certainly do without you. In fact, better off without you since you cause so much damn trouble. Really? How? Disconnect disconnect ”¦

If you decide you are better off dead than alive you better get all your ducks in a row because no one will want to bother to put a small funeral together for you you are not worth it so my thoughts lead me.

When you feel worthless, as I have since putting my relationship with the step-grandma on the line, I feel my granddaughter must hate me too. Certainly my ex does because he phoned to tell me how stupid I was and why do I always have to rock the fn boat!!!! She is better off without me, my mind plays over and over. 1. I introduced her to the molester and 2. I pissed off her step-grandma who now alienates her from me. 3. I pissed off my ex whom usually has a good relationship with me, considering we are divorced.

Everyone must be right because it is just me ”¦ just me who thinks a little girl who was molested from the time she was 8 to 11 was molested and filmed by my friend MIGHT NEED A LITTLE BIT OF COUNSELING! What a fkn idiot and worthless piece of shit am I!!!!! I harmed my granddaughter!!! HATE HATE HATE MYSELF. I DO NOT DESERVE TO LIVE! And besides, no one will miss me and certainly the funeral arrangements will be a time consuming bother for my ex to prepare (he is the only adult I have I consider “Kin.”).

I’m afraid. I’m afraid I will kill myself and then find out that all of my thoughts are wrong and someone down the road (like my granddaughter) might need me. These are the good thoughts ”¦ the proper thoughts ”¦ but not the thoughts that rage in my mind in PTSD mode. Disconnect.

Then there is my heart. My heart loves all of my sociopaths. I want a relationship with them but they hurt me so I had to stop ”¦ but I miss them terribly. I live alone; on disability ”¦ I can’t survive in my home much longer if I don’t get my career back. No energy. No self worth. WHO THE HELL WOULD HIRE ME? I AM NOTHING!

And so, in my mind, there is NO hope. I keep waiting for the PTSD to leave me but the situation has not changed (no counseling for my granddaughter and not allowed to have her with me for visits). No hope.

I don’t want to scare anyone here but the thing is I really do want to die. As soon as possible. I have to get “my ducks in a row” so as to not inconvenience anyone (I’m saying that seriously, not sarcastically).

I finally figured out a way that will work. I found it by googling. It is perfect, quiet, and won’t harm anyone else in my deed.

But I’m afraid. I’m too informed now that I understand this stress / anxiety / self-loathing will leave me.

People will call me a coward. Cruel to my grandchild. They will hate what I do. But, what is the difference? They think all that now!

I’m taking it day by day right now. Hoping and praying that I’ll regain my sense of balance and healthy thinking soon. The pain rivets through my body right now and is unbearable. Do I? Don’t I? What are my options????

And that, my friends, is the day in the life of a person raised by sociopaths and other sociopaths who seem to stick to me like glue. I have no more trust in new people. None.


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G1S

Larissa,

I have been where you are except for me it was my son, not my granddaughter.

1.) No. It is not your fault that you brought this man into your granddaughter’s life.

You are powerless over what others do.

Competent adults are responsible for their own behavior.

It might not be much comfort, but if it hadn’t been this man, it could have been another. You cannot protect your granddaughter from all the perverts in the world. Don’t own that. Don’t go there.

2.) You are very valuable to your granddaughter even if right now the external things say otherwise.

When my P sister kidnapped my son and my friend called the house on Mother’s Day to suggest to him to talk with me, I heard the contempt for me in his voice. I also knew it for what it was. My sister’s brainwashing. I knew that my son was being harmed. As much as it hurt, I knew that he needed me more than ever.

Kids get confused. Your granddaughter is very confused right now. She is struggling to make sense out of what is happening to her. She is going to be swayed by and she will listen to those closest to her at the moment. You cannot stop that from happening. She will echo what they are telling her. Those are not the facts. Remember that.

They are just words and you have words of your own. Your words and your actions will tell her there is something else to consider. Give her those. She will see. She will make up her mind eventually.

Her current circumstances will change. Worst case scenario, she will grow up estranged from you, but don’t let that happen. Keep fighting for her. It will plant doubts in her mind about what she is being currently told. More importantly, she will eventually see whose words are matching her truths.

She knows what she’s been through. She knows what people have done to her. Don’t be afraid when she is the appropriate age to tell her that she has been told lies. Do not mince words. Call the falsehoods lies. That is what they are. She needs to hear that.

3.) Yes, you are very vulnerable because you were abused yourself. You will get triggered very easily.

Get help for you and your issues. The way that you can be strongest for her is getting stronger yourself. If she is out of your life for a while, throw yourself into recovery for your childhood issues – get therapy, join a 12-Step group if appropriate, join an incest survivors group, keep coming here, read.

Get as much information as possible to put things into perspective.

Learn why this isn’t your fault.

4.) You have more value now than before. If you are the only voice of sanity left in that family dynamic, damn it, be that voice of sanity.

Get and keep sane yourself.

Get a lawyer if you can afford one. Report this man to the state authorities.

Forget about rocking the boat or upsetting those people. Who cares? That’s a given. If they had real feelings, they wouldn’t be acting this way. Tough luck for them.

You need to pull as many resources together to beef you up because you are the general leading this battle.

We cannot change the past. The past happened. You can change the here-and-now.

1.) Get help for yourself.
2.) Calm down. Hysterics are not going to help you or your granddaughter any. Hysterics will cloud your thinking and give your power away to the people you don’t want to have them.
3.) Report this SOB.
4.) Consider your relationship with these people over. That’s what’s probably going to happen anyway. A relationship with them is not worth preserving if they continue to permit your granddaughter to be abused, suffer, or won’t get her help.

Do not try to find a middle ground where you can help your granddaughter and stay on good terms with these people. If they are decent, they will ultimately see what you did and will come around by supporting you. If they can’t see what you’re doing, then don’t put your energy into trying to save a relationship with them. This really isn’t a middle ground issue. You can’t compromise about child sexual abuse.

Trying to preserve a workable relationship with these people is going to tax you too much. It’s going to divide your attention. You do not want to do that.

Everything that you have should be focused on two things at the moment – you and your granddaughter. That’s not being selfish. It is one of the most noble things that you can do for a child.

You only have so much emotional energy. There is only so much you can absorb.

Think of yourself as a ship with you, your granddaughter, and all these other people and situations in it. To stay afloat, cast overboard anything that will sink your ship.

Your first objective is to survive. Your second objective is to be there for your granddaughter. She needs to hear your voice even if there are no signs that she is receiving or believing what you are saying. That doesn’t mean anything. She is very, very confused right now. Please believe that.

Really, your granddaughter needs you. Your value has shot thought the roof because these people are refusing to address the harm that your granddaughter has been through.

It isn’t selfish to commit suicide in a situation like you’re describing. It is not cowardness. It’s despair. It’s believing that nobody believes you and that nobody will support you. That isn’t true. You need to seek out the right people. Don’t go to the people who are rejecting you. You already know how they will react. Push on and find supporter.

It’s also your sense of helplessness, but you are not helpless. You are in need of assistance and support. There is help available. You just can’t see it right now.

Don’t waste your energy getting your affairs in order. Put that energy to good use where it will help you and your granddaughter.

Also, there are online suicide support sites for people thinking of killing themselves. Find them. Contact them. They offer support as well. Pick up the phone and call the Samaritans if they are available in your area.

On one of the suicide support sites, the site’s owner said that he had never met anybody who attempted suicide – and was rescued from that attempt – who ever regretted that somebody saved them to live another day.

As bad as today seems, remember, this, too, shall pass.

Just take things one day at a time.

Seriously, find a support group for incest survivors. They have been through what you have and will walk you out of this dark spot that you are in at the moment. They will know about people denying what is happening and how to approach authorities to make the abuse stop.

It’s only temporary, Larissa. Your granddaughter does need you and she needs you very much.

Good luck.

You are in my prayers.

Hugs.

G1S

Larissa, I read and understood every word you wrote. I’m an incest survivor too, and I’ve been through several long depressions that ultimately came down to forgiving myself. Easy to say, hard to do. Like you, I had so many tapes that all seemed to be organized to prove that I was broken, unfixable and dangerous to anyone around me.

It’s good in reading your letter to see you say over and over again that you know this is a “state.” It was triggered by something. And it will end. It is not your normal, baseline state. It’s the result of a trigger. A big one. Complicated too. Because it involves someone you care about, and your feelings of powerlessness and guilt about the situation.

But it’s still just a state, caused by a trigger, and you know that it’s not just affecting your feelings. It’s also affecting your ability to see things fully and to consider rationally what is the right thing to do. Especially as regards taking care of yourself. Because getting yourself stabilized has to come before you can reach out and affect the rest of the world.

So at the risk of irritating you by meddling, I’m going to share some thoughts. And maybe they’ll help you get grounded again.

1. Those tapes are one of two things. They are “lessons” you absorbed from your environment, and particularly from treatment by people who had a stake in keeping you from telling the truth about your own life. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the concept of gaslighting, but it’s basically talk toward you that designed to separate you from your own objective reality. It’s when people criticize your character, or the the way you think, or the way you talk, and cause you to second-guess yourself. If it starts when you’re a child, which it undoubtedly did if you come from an incest family, it would make you vulnerable to all kinds of ego weaknesses. You can’t be sure that any part of you is “good” or “acceptable” or “appropriate” and all those other judgmental words. One thing you can do with those tapes, if you recognize them as tapes, is to tell them to “shut up!” It won’t make them disappear, but it can push them into the background.

2. The second things those tapes are is what your own growing mind did as it tried to reason its survival strategy in a world where people expected you to care more about them than they cared about you. Again, if you’re an incest survivor, it’s almost guaranteed that you developed all kind of internal rules based on surviving in a world, where your ideas and needs and plans were not welcome. So you had to develop some really complex survival strategies that involves trying not to appear to want anything, while you quietly tried to get what little you thought you could get of what you really wanted, including a little safety and a little love.

Does this sound familiar? If I’m way off, please forgive me. I also know that, a lot of the time, when you’re not triggered, all these issues may not be at the surface. Even though they may be the secret basis for the the way you arrange you’re life. So let’s get on to the next thought.

3. What you’re going through is what I used to call an “ego implosion.” I became terrified that everything I did was wrong, than no one did or could possibly love me, and I desperately needed to have people stroke me and tell me nice things. (My son’s father, who wasn’t the most sophisticated guy in psychological terms, used say I was having one of my “attacks of squirrelly-ness.” But he was patient and good about listening to all my raging insecurities, and then reassuring me that I was smart, pretty and he loved me.) At some point, I discovered the MAGIC WORDS. First I would just ask people to say them to me, whether or not they meant them. I just needed to hear. Later I started writing them on post-it notes, and pasting them all over the house, particularly near mirrors, where I could say them to myself. Ready? Here they are:

“I LOVE YOU, YOU’RE DOING A GOOD JOB, AND EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT.”

4. And this is the last one, but the most important one. Larissa, you need a therapist who specializes in childhood sexual abuse and really do the whole thing. You may have seen therapists, but I tell by reading your letter, that you have not really dug into exactly what this history has done to you, and how you can heal your wounded spirit.

For me, the experience with my ex-boyfriend, who I believe was a sociopath, finally drove me to get serious about figuring out what was wrong me and fixing it. It was that or kill myself, and I decided to live. Getting serious about it meant that I stopped hating my feelings, and started listening to them to try to understand where they came from inside me, and what they were trying to tell me.

Like you I had a lot of memories of people saying hateful and hurtful things to me. Until I got serious about healing, I used to focus on what they said. When I got serious about getting better, I started to focus on how I felt about it. How I felt about what they said. How I felt about their behavior in saying it. How I felt about myself, my real self, and if my feelings about those statements from other people was really about hating myself (as they seemed to want me to do) or was about being mad at myself for not holding on to my truth, my values, my entitlement to be cared for, especially by myself.

That last sentence can be read a lot of ways, depending on where you are in your own healing. So I’m reassuring you right now that there’s no criticism in it. You’ve been doing the best you can all your life. And you’ve been doing it under difficult circumstances. I’m glad you had good years with a good husband, and you deserved it. But the underlying issues are rising again now under stress, and it’s an opportunity for your to resolve this old stuff.

I’m not trying to push you. But I can tell you that you don’t need to be afraid. Even when it deals with bad memories or negative emotions, the recovery process is joyous. You feel yourself becoming more of an authentic person, rather than a bundle of anxious reactions. It’s a path of coming home to your real self. So those triggers — which are really just old fears about who you are and your place in the world — lose their power. And you can rise as the strong, beautiful, lovable person that you truly are.

Really.

One last thing. When I started on this path, one of the scariest things I faced was not knowing how it was going to play out. I couldn’t find any resources that explained, and I had to overcome a lot of fear to do and feel things I’d never let myself do and feel before.

So, to help other people who might be afraid of the path, I wrote a series of articles here on LoveFraud. I’m listed as one of the authors on the column at the left of this page. Even though the title of the series is “After the Sociopath, How Do We Heal,” it’s really about recovery from traumatic relationships. Any kind of traumatic relationships.

You really can heal. You’ll never been totally free of PSTD reactions, because they’re normal. It’s just like the hand-on-a-hot-stove kind of learning. Something reminds us a bad thing that happened, and it’s natural to experience a snapshot of how that thing felt, so we remember not to put our hand on the stove again. But we can get confident about the fact that we have learned from our experiences, and we can get to the point where we know that the feelings are good things — designed to protect us — not something we have to run from because we’re afraid of them.

Larissa, it will all get better. You’re going to be okay. You have a right to all your feelings. But, as I said earlier, it will help if you pay attention to the feelings, rather than the things that caused them. (And to do that, you’re going to have to let the rest of the world take care of itself for a bit, while you take care of yourself.) Your whole psyche, and especially your nervous/emotional system, is designed to help you survive and thrive. When listening to yourself becomes more important that all that external noise (and all that stuff that other people wanted you to think), you will see yourself in a whole new way. And you’ll approach the world in a whole new way too.

Again, my apologies for any irritation this letter may cause. Particularly if you already know this stuff. Maybe hearing it again will help.

In the meantime, and I think I speak for a lot of people, I love you, you’re doing a good job, and everything is going to be all right.

Kathy

G1S

And Larissa, because I know how overwhelming things are when you’re at this point, I did want to point out what should be obvious from my post and Kathy’s, but might not be because, hey, you have enough on your plate right now…

Your recovery isn’t going to happen overnight. You’re not going to feel good fast. You are not going to come up with solutions about your granddaughter fast either.

Just remember that this didn’t happen overnight. It’s not going to end overnight either.

It does take work, but the end is worth it. Honestly, it is.

Kathy is right about seeing a therapist who specializes in sexual abuse.

Find somebody who is already qualified in that area and isn’t using your case to add to their resume of skills.

Kathy, loved your term “ego weaknesses.”

Larissa,
I recognize your story from your previous posts.

My advice to you is this: The answer is always the thing that is the hardest thing to do. Letting go of our need to control is the hardest thing to do. For me, I’ve done this by telling myself, “ok, I’m not letting go, but I’m letting go for NOW.” Then you can breathe a bit, stop panicking, let God deal with it JUST FOR TODAY. Now you have a day to think about it.

Yes, you messed up. YOU ARE FORGIVEN. You are human and you were doing the best you could do with what you knew at the time.

Reality is, you can’t fix problems when you are still mired in them. It will take a while to fix what has been long in the making. You can’t rush it. You can’t force it. There is no easy answer. Just start taking that first step to learning. Learn about you and what made you vulnerable. I know it was the child abuse you endured, but think about how that is still affecting you. Even better, learn how healthy people live and emulate them.

My own experience wasn’t incest, it was emotional abuse as a child. I’m still working my way out of it. It takes time and patience.

To echo Kathleen, I think you’re doing a good job. You understand your cognitive dissonance, you know that this is a stage. I love you and everything is going to be ok. For both of us.

kim frederick

Larissa, It’s not your fault!! Please look for a therapist who specializes in sexual abuse. And understand that trauma has a natural tendancy to repeat itself….it seeks to be rekoned with, in spite of the denial, disasociation and the family bonding and secrecy. We do what we know to do…we find people who seem familiar, we try to work out old issues, and we do that by reanacting old traumas. This is not at all unusual in the areana of generational sexual abuse. It isn’t your fault.
Right now, YOU NEED TO HELP YOURSELF.
One day at a time. Your Grandaughter will be okay, too, one day at a time. You might like the serenity prayer. It goes like this:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
The courage to change the things I can;
And the wisdom to know the difference.

strongawoman

It is a deep, dark hole that one is in when one believes the only way out is suicide. Larissa, I have been where you are. Contemplating suicide because I truly believed that the people I loved were better off without me. It’s a place I never want to experience again.

My heart goes out to you. Have you been to your doctor. Sorry not sure how your system works but here in the UK the first port of call is the GP. I know you said you don’t need medication but with all due respect you aren’t a doctor. And did you tell the hospital that you are having suicidal thoughts?

I know what your going through. It’s desperate, I know. Have you got anyone who can listen to you or go with you to seek medical help.?
I hope so. ..if not could you ring an organisation that will point you in the right direction. We have the “Samaritans” here. It’s run by volunteers 24/7 for people like you. People in crisis.

I tried, like you, to sort all the things going on in my head myself. It didn’t work. Your poor brain can’t cope.
I agree with the person who said, you’re human, you made a mistake. Larissa, you deserve to be helped, my dear. The trouble is when your so far down that f***ing hole you can’t see it.

Sending you strength…..and a virtual hand. Come on lady, don’t give up on yourself.

Truthspeak

Larissa, I just lost the post that I made to this desperate plea for help, so I’ll try starting over.

First: you did not create the bad person. You did not set up your grandchild, deliberately, and you are NOT responsible for what happened. NOT RESPONSIBLE. This is your mantra until such time as you engage in some strong counseling.

Next: rolling over and giving up is a very, very tempting “option.” A greater majority of LoveFraud readers have seriously contemplated ending their own lives – I sure did. But, this “option” is borne of desperation, fear, shame, guilt, and a feeling of hopelessness. These are all “normal” feelings after such trauma. However tempting this “option” may seem, we are mandated to “WIN” by surviving, recovering, and emerging to fulfill some unknown purpose. Perhaps, your destiny is to become a vocal advocate for those who don’t have voices – I don’t know. But, the founder of this site had her dark moments and her emergence has been a life-saving epiphany – without this site, many of us would have followed through with the easiest “option” available.

Finally: if I had given in to the temptation to take my own life, the exspath would have had the final “WIN” and everything that he had done to me would have been easily justified because, “Look at how messed up she was! She took her own life! Everything that she claimed is rubbish,” and I would not be here to refute any of his allegations. People would have clucked their tongues, shaken their heads, and delivered PITY to that rat-bastard on a Staffordshire Sterling Platter. He would have successfully committed Murder By Proxy, and what would be more powerful than that? To know that someone took their own life because of something that HE did would be the most potent of all elixirs for him, and he would have used my end to set up his next target. Next victim? Next victim, please?

No…though it may be tempting, Larissa, you are precious in this mystical and vast Universe. Although we cannot be standing by your side, physically, you are surrounded by a virtual circle of UNCONDITIONAL love, support, and encouragement. See the hands that have reached out to you and know that there are likely tens of dozens of others who would reach out and respond but for their own stages of triggered trauma.

You have been provided with some excellent suggestions and resource options. Here’s another: calling your local domestic violence hotline and speaking openly with the “intake” person will open a whole HOST of resources for you. These people have a LIST of strong counseling therapists and most of these counselors provide their services at no cost. They can also provide you with support groups so that you will actually KNOW that you are not alone in this, and that you CAN survive these experiences.

Our hands are extended to you, Larissa. You are loved, unconditionally. You are a valuable and irreplaceable part of this Universe. Hold on, and we’ll be with you even if it’s in a “virtual” setting.”

Brightest and most sincere blessings to you

KarmaChameleon

Dear Larissa,

I can’t offer any advice that hasn’t been given to you already. I can only offer my support and my friendship. There were many dark days for me due to childhood trauma, and my trauma was not like yours. You are stronger than you think you are.

You are valuable. You are worthy of love. You are a good person. Those tapes playing in your head are so very damaging, I wish I could replace them for you with some new, kick ass tapes that reminded you that you will heal, this will pass, that dwelling in the past does no good, look forward, even if it’s just looking forward for a moment, for an hour. Hope is what you need, and what you don’t have it seems. I wish I could provide some, I’d Fed Ex it right over along with the new tapes.

Please take care of yourself.

OpalRose

Dearest Larissa

At times in my life I’ve been both frantically and chronically suicidal. Now I know it was due to childhood / teen / adult close encounters with sociopaths and abusers. A big contributor to my suicide obsession was chronic sleep deprivation (starting in childhood) such that I could not think straight about anything. My suggestion is to get some help right away with helping you to get some quality sleep – that was my initial life-saving step. You sound beyond exhausted and I know that place so well.

Bless you – God Bless you – I love you – we love you. I appreciate all the posts so far here – so helpful to me as well. I’m also glad you have pets – they can give really good hugs. Feel our love coming to you through them.

newlife43

Dear Larissa:

I had PTSD for 18 years. I was in despair of ever getting well. But I knew if I did not, I would finally give in to the voices in my head to end my life. Most people who commit suicide do not really want to die. Instead, they just cannot wake up and FEEL THAT WAY ONE MORE DAY! I understand. My PTSD was also caused by the molestation of my daughter. At the bottom of all PTSD is unrelenting guilt. You even posted it as your first point. That you feel that you caused it. No matter what I say to you, you will not believe me when I tell you it is not your fault, but the fault of the perpetrator. That’s ok to feel that way. But feeling that way is what is going to kill you. So you have to get better to stay the course to help your granddaughter. No one else can help her like you can, no one else will be able to understand like you will. You matter, you count, you have an important role to play, so do not give up.

BUT, you will not be able to get better with conventional therapy or drugs, take it from me, I tried. I was lucky enough to stumble on a technique called EFT. It is all over the internet, you don’t have to go to a hospital or even have anyone else with you to use it (but it couldn’t hurt to have someone there). You can learn it in three minutes from YouTube videos, and tap along right with them in the privacy of your home. Also check out a technique called TAT. They are both free to learn, free to use, AND THEY WORK. It is very important that you at least look at these techniques and give them a try. There is hope and relief. You can feel better in days if you will just give it a try. And wonder why you ever felt like killing yourself. At which point, you will be able to think clearly what to do next for yourself and your granddaughter.

Hang in there. Try it. I have been free of PTSD for six years now, thank God! These are miracles and you deserve one also.

God Bless.

sea storm

Dear Larissa,

Don’t give up. Just for one more hour.

Many people have responded to your feelings of despair and I can relate to your feeling suicidal. It takes such courage to ride out the feelings of pain and fear that have gripped you. You have experienced way too much trauma and it was not your fault. You did not deserve it and you are not flawed.

It is amazing that you soldiered on after the sexual abuse when you were a child. That leaves such a gaping hole in a little girl’s soul. I work with children who have been sexually abused and I see their dear, dazed, confused and overwhelmed little faces. Mostly children check out and their psyche protects them by compartmentalizing the trauma until they can deal with it later. This is not the best thing but in our society there is not the will or the resources to deal with childhood abuse.

You need to focus on stabilizing yourself if you are to be of help to your granddaughter. You can do it. It can’t all be fixed all at once. Just your loving presence is enough. I think having someone to love her is the main thing. To validate and love her for who she is. A steady stream of loving care is irresistible. There may be those around her who are against you but they don’t matter. You know the path she is on. Approach a wounded bird gently and lovingly. Show her you respect her boundaries and teach her about boundaries. About how to be safe in the world and how to say, ” back off buster” to people who intrude on her boundaries. This is how to be safe in the world.

Maybe she won’t be sent to a therapist but their are lots of things therapists do that anyone can do. Teaching a kid about safe touch and respecting if her tummy says she doesn’t like someone. Teaching her that she does not have to hug anyone she is told to hug. There are many children’s books out about this issue.
From my experience I know that little kids can work through trauma more quickly than adults. These are the tools that I use with children.

Someone mentioned EFT. This is very powerful and works. I use rapid Eye movement with children when they are deep in trauma. This can help people when they are in so much pain and stuck in it so they can’t get out. Basically, moving your eyes from left to right quickly at least fourteen times. I know that a lot of therapists would say that it should only be done under the care of a therapist but it works if you do it when you feel suicidal. This is not good for someone with psychosis.
You sound rational to me and I believe that you have a good handle on what is happening but too much is happening all at once.

I am glad you are writing here and it took courage to disclose so much. You are helping me when you tell your story. So much of what you said has happened to me too. Even the part about being the evil grandmother. Grandmother’s fighting for the love of a grandchild was something I was not prepared for. Alienation of affection is what it is called but that does not describe how painful it feels to be the one who is targeted as unacceptable and who loses out on the love of their grandchild. This is not the end of the story though.

You are capable of love and if you can turn that love onto yourself. You need a lot of compassion right now. The tapes are loud and unrelenting but you can interrupt them with a different message. Those tapes come from the offenders. Say something like: I am perfectly adequate and I love myself. It will take saying it ten thousand times to counter the other tapes. You probably already know this. But its a reminder.

Bless you, bless you, bless you dear survivor. Thank you for sharing your feelings, your pain and despair. That is your lifeline. God bless you.

Keep writing. What you say may trigger some and they can choose to not read. Some of us have been through the valley of the shadow of death and can say that you can make it out to safety and honest to god contentment.

Sea storm

alivetoday

Larissa,
I too have been diagnosed with PTSD, clinical depression, Stockholm Syndrome and probably more? I was molested at age 3 and was molested by my father in my younger years as well. (I have never ever expressed it in that term about my father until this very moment..)
I want to promise you, that this too will pass! I have found, when the pain is deepening and doesnt seem to go away, day after day, and it gets to the point that I cant speak any words without constant crying that I believe that I am having a nervous breakdown THAT IN FACT, I’M NOT, I’M HAVING A BREAKTHROUGH!! At a crossroad, a turning point, a place of true decision…Please find the counselor that deals with PTSD and continue being heard as well as your support here on LF.

God Bless You and watch over you…

Alivetoday (and that is a miracle, they do happen!!!:))

just-us

Here is my two cents. I’ve been there. I have been to the place where the colors are there but you can’t “see” them. I’ve been to the place where the birds are singing but you can’t “hear” them.

For me it was knowing my aunt, who killed herself, listened to the lie that no one loved her. I knew I loved her, that she had value, so by extention the “voices” where lies. From there, I just kept telling myself over and over and over, “Just breath, breath is on automatic, don’t do anything to stop it, live will go on and it will get better.” This I repeated to myself as the “voices” where screaming, “you’re worthless”.

You indicated you recognize the lies. Remind yourself that they are just that….lies. And just breath, don’t do anything to stop it. I know it way harder then climbing Mount Everest but you can do it or should I say…NOT do it. You can not particapate in the lie. The fact you have so much pain IS the evidence that you are a good person.

All you have to do right now is breath and breath is on automatic.

Frandee

Larissa,
I won’t go into a huge long story other than I think I have been going thru PTSD for decades and never really knew it, abuse of all kind survivor!! Just know I am here and sending you love and support, Your puppies NEED you, sometimes I felt the same as you but I have 3 lil furbabies that COUNT on me, that has kept me going!!! I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and PLEASE PLEASE know that what others do you have NO CONTROL OVER, only yourself, do what is best and healthiest for you!!! You CAN DO IT!!! HUGS sweet girl!!

New Beginning

Hold on, Larissa. There is a spiritual plan and it’s my belief that you are isolated from the others now so your granddaughter will believe your love for her. She will be comforted by your love. She will need to see without a doubt that you are NOT like the others when she is old enough to recognize that her “caregivers” didn’t really care all that much. This is a time of transition for you and it is process. Your time with your granddaughter will come.

I understand the hopelessness and despair. I agree with
Strongawoman that people who commit suicide don’t want to die, they just can’t bear another day. For quite some time I remember waking each morning with such overwhelming dread that I was facing yet another day. I’m still healing but can confirm that it does get better. I no longer dread each and every day. I’m not fighting suicidal thoughts 24/7. I don’t sleep all day anymore. I am becoming more functional and actually started cooking again! It’s been five years since the first of a string of life altering traumas (caused by the P I was married to for 30 yrs) but I am ok and you will be too. It’s just difficult to see the light when deep in the hell of PTSD but there IS hope.

Remember that your granddaughter will need you in her future. Each new day is another step in the right direction.

Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.

~New

PS. Wanted to add that I am alone too. My human “interactions” at this time are cashier’s at the check-out. I used to be a happy and content person will a full life……..and I am on my way back to that but this time without spaths in my life. It takes time to accept the realities and then time to heal. You will heal too. *hugs*

just-us

Larissa’s letter to Lovefraud disappeared from recent comments. I thought I would post a comment to bring it back up. Will you all help me to keep in recent comments, post a comment when it is on the bottom.

I would hate for her to come here and not be able to find her letter or our comments.

Larissa

My dear new friends.

While it may not appear so at first, this is a letter of divine intervention I experienced after I sent Donna that letter. I am hear to tell it and you will not believe it as you see what I did.

There are so many comments I cannot possibly respond to all of them but I want to tell you the end of that letter’s story.

First, I want you to know I DID tell the hospital every single thing about my suicide plan right down to the knitty gritty. I told them I was going to die that day if I did not get hospitalized until the feelings passed. They sent me home anyway with an appointment to see a doctor in 2 weeks. Not good enough. No, I said I was going to die and that is exactly what I set out to do when I left the hospital.

I’ll tell you what happened to me (or what I did to myself) after I clear up a few things….

The other thing I want to say is I DID report the abuse. That was not the issue. The issue was when I asked her guardians to please get my granddaughter counseling because I went to the sentencing hearing and heard WAY too much about what this monster did to her from the ages of 8 to 11. He is now in jail.

The issue is that when the guardian (step-grandparent) told me to mind my own business about getting my granddaughter counseling I lost it. I telephoned the ministry for children services and asked them to go speak to the step-grandparent and maybe she would listen to them.

Meanwhile, she has been hanging up on me and not allowing me to speak to my granddaughter, whom is the only person in my family left (my son passed away).

By lashing out in an email to the stepgrandparent, and by sending the ministry of children services to their home, I aggravated the situation even more for them.

*****************************

Now, the end of my story of the PTSD episode. First, it is over. And the reason it is over is because I successfully took my car to a hidden place behind a fast moving highway, stuffed a cloth in the exhaust and waited to die. I was unconcious when suddenly a banging was heard on my window by my head.

I freaked out.

Where in the hell did this lady come from – I was in the middle of NO WHERE!

I put the car in drive and as fast as I could sped onto the 80 mile (or 110 km) hwy and put my foot down on the accelerator. As soon as I was up to speed I quickly swerved my car into a very large stony mountain and my car landed in the mountain. I was unconscious but alive – and my car is now a write off.

I was taken to the hospital by ambulance and held in emergency for just 2 days (barely any injuries except some bruising on my arms and legs).

I then went upstairs to the psych ward and stayed there for two days. I was released because the suicide need was gone.

I don’t know why it was gone, but after gassing myself, driving into a freaking mountain, and still coming out of this with barely a scratch…someone, or something, is telling me I am not going to die by suicide. So many times I have tried my hardest to be successful and every time I am not…but just left with the horrors of what I did and having to explain myself with great remorse.

I had my will done. I had my own obituary made out (didn’t think anyone would want to do one). I put money in my account so my ex wouldn’t have to pay for my cremation (I already have a plot with my name on it where my son is buried).

Everything was in order. Had all of my ducks in a row.

Had a sure fire way to die.

And yet here I am.

Here I am!

I am now home. I am already making arrangements for getting access to my granddaughter through the courts, I am already looking at moving where there is more work and where I can get the hell out of dodge, this place I live that has only added to the pain of my childhood.

Can you honestly tell me there is not a God when just a few days ago I was stuck in a mountain with my car! And gassed!

Anyway, I will go back to Elizabeth Fry society (I did call the crisis intervention before I acted as well…but my tapes were so intense no one could have talked me out of this one).

I will follow up now that I am of sound mind…now is the time for me to act on my behalf…in the middle of the PTSD it is like telling a manic person to not be manic. For me i am so stuck in my bad thoughts the only solution was to be locked up. But the hospital dropped the ball and told me to go home.

I wish to thank each and every one of you, and especially Donna for publishing my letter. Your kind words, intelligent and knowing words of wisdom, means everything to me – today.

God bless.

Larissa

Ox Drover

Yes, Larissa, I believe with all my heart that there IS A GOD! Hang on to that piece of faith! Don’t let go.

No matter what happens on the outside of you, there is no reason for you to die…there IS A REASON FOR YOU TO LIVE, that little girl needs you. God bless.

just-us

LARRISA!! Nice to hear from you. So glad the angels where with you. So sorry the hospital wouldn’t keep you. Keep your “I will” attitude. You can and will do something for your granddaughter IF you stay here(in the world).

Keep coming back to read. You will be amazed at the support you get here.

Remember, breathe is on automatic, don’t do anything to stop it, life will go on and it WILL get better.

New Beginning

Larissa, welcome!

I can’t imagine what it felt like to have the hospital turn you away but if they didn’t, you wouldn’t have this first hand knowledge of the Divine. Your story is amazing and true testimony that you do make a difference and your presence is indeed needed on this earth.

My best to you and your granddaughter as you both continue along your journey.

New Beginning

Newlife,

My apologies for not accurately crediting you for the portion of your post I quoted.

~New

Larissa

I have chills tonight. The more clear headed I get the more I am amazed at the outcome of my so-called sure-fire way to die.

Can you believe that not only did the police not charge me…but my insurance company is going to pay for my written off car! I found out today. Unreal. God is with me I have no doubt. God and his angels.

I am documenting every contact I try with my granddaughter and am going to file court papers for access to her. She does need me. I am another side to her life. I teach her different things than what she gains at home (such as her horse competitions, etc.). I teach her about God and angels.

This is a prayer I made up years ago (especially for her) that I prayed with her since she was just 2 years old…I tickle her back as she drifts off to sleep this is the prayer with her…

“May the angels keep us til morning, may they see us through the night…

May they comfort all our sorrows, and show us to the light….

May they keep watch on our souls, and show us better ways…

And guide us while we’re sleeping and see us through our days…

And if the angels are sleeping (this is where my granddaughter finishes the prayer) God or Jesus will be there that day!

I am a good grandma (Nana). I am wise to wish counseling for her after her 3 year horrible experience with a monster. I am wise to keep fighting for her…and I will no longer regret “bringing it up” with step-grandma because I am right of mind and soul. I am okay in spite of all I went through as a child. I am not all my sociopathic parents said I am. New tapes need to be written and I am (now that I am in sound mind) going to make sure I play them over and over in my head. I am a GREAT grandmother to this precious child.

I am an excellent example for my granddaughter and darn it – I’m going to document everything and fight to the end for my contact with her so that I can teach her all I know; turn things around with my knowledge of my own sickening childhood.

I have positive ways of coping (except in the middle of a PTSD episode) and I can teach her these.

And I will never give up on our relationship – no matter how hard people will try to stop me. I am right. I am on my granddaughter’s side and always will be and she will always know this. I’ll make sure of it. Especially now that I know that God and his angels want me around for a reason, and I have a strong feeling the reason is to tend to my granddaughter’s emotional well-being.

Just as my grandma was for me in my childhood horrors.

Again, GOD BLESS…because there is no other way to say it to all of you.

And I do keep on reading your letters and experiences. Love to EVERYONE!

Larissa

P.S. today, June 28th 2012, is the 9th anniversary of my son’s death. Why not take a look at his memorial and drop me a line there to say you met him. I know you will enjoy the memorial as it is about hope. http://www.trevor.virtual-memorials.com

My granddaughter would have really loved him and his love of laughter and living.

Truthspeak

Larissa, I’m relieved to hear that you’re here, and okay. Wild ride, indeed.

I completely understand that desperation, I really do. I believe that most all of the readers and posters understand it.

You are engaged in counseling, and that will be priceless for you. Right now, the focus is on YOU – you cannot help or save your grandchild, for a while. Whether or not you can “save” her, will always be questionable. But, you CAN save yourself so that, when the time comes, you will be in a healthy and strong space.

If you experienced the same experiences in your own childhood, your counselor will provide you with the necessary tools to work through that toxic, painful, and sad history. Strong counseling will also help you to cope with the tragic loss of your son – that is a loss that I cannot even begin to imagine, and it is something that I cannot speak to, personally.

But, right now, YOU are the most important person in your life – it is NOT selfish to adopt this stance. It is pragmatic and true. Yes, your concern about your grandchild is valid, and it is important. However, I am of NO help to anyone if I’m mired in my despair – and, believe me, I’ve nearly sunk in that stinking pit, numerous times, and still remain vigilant to avoid slipping back in.

Brightest, most healing blessings to you, Larissa. Welcome back to Life, and unconditional love – you’re going to be okay.

G1S

Larissa,

I spent a while on your site.

I would be devastated if I lost my son. I almost did, twice, because of the Ps. They drove him to the brink of suicide, badly enough that he was hospitalized twice for it.

I understand that the grief would last a long time. I got too close to facing that. There would be sorrow that we could not be together anymore in this life. I have often thought that if he ever died, I would join him because I had nothing left to live for in this life. The Ps in my family did their best to ensure that.

What I see on your site is not mourning, but a celebration of Trevor’s life.

When I was viewing his photos, it struck me that he was smiling in all them and it was such a great and sincere smile. It was the same way with my son, before the Ps got to him. He’s serious many times now, but when he was a baby, I took photos of him crying just to prove to people that he did do that once in a while.

Much love. Today is going to be rough day for you. Please remember that you are surrounded by love on both sides of the veil.

I am so glad that you were not able to follow through with your plans. Please never deliberately put your granddaughter through the pain and grief that you went through over the loss of your son.

Please remember that you are the strongest link that she has to her father. Show her how to love him as you did. Help form her images of him to be as positive and loving as possible.

Continue to experience with her the angels’ feathers showering her with love.

Grace

Larissa,

Your memorial pages are beautiful. What an amazing celebration of life, as G1S said above.

You are so strong. I know. I read your story.

Bless you, this day and always.

Linda

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