Reflecting on the trauma of “the system”

Last night, I started an exercise on my PTSD where you write creatively for 15 minutes about one of your traumas. I’ve decided to share it.

I hope any professional reading this can see that it’s not a personal attack on anyone. It’s the result of years of battling the system and straining to get my voice heard.

“I was so lonely.
I had no one to relate to.
I have never been trusted or believed by anyone.
I was patronised.
All the things I saw as positive about myself throughout my entire life, were stripped away from me. I had no value anymore. I was worth nothing. Not even worth being listened to. My words meant nothing. My knowledge meant nothing. All things which in the past had earned me good grades and respect- gone. So fast.

All the things that made me uniquely me – my sense of humour, quick thinking, direct approach and clarity. They were all now bad things. Reasons to be disliked, reasons to be considered untrustworthy. Reasons to be valued as a lower life form, despite my experiences in life, my view points and knowledge.
I was emptied of everything I ever valued about myself. Until eventually, one day, I was hollow inside with nothing left.

No one appreciated the work I did, the hours I did. Positive feedback didn’t exist, but negative feedback did.
Starting each day with raised hopes that today would be the day something changed, only to go to bed 9 times out of 10 with a gut filled full of disappointment, criticism and being made to feel like I was making a fuss.

Like a child who had been told off for being too sensitive, or upset at something which no one else found upsetting. My emotions and feelings were disregarded.
Just like when I had my first breakdown, I had to find a way to teach myself how to survive. Because no professional was truly listening, not to me. They heard what suited them and ran with it. Frightened by challenge, frightened by someone who didn’t fit the mould (me or my son). Frightened because I told the truth. They would alter my truth so they knew how to handle it. Pick the pieces they wanted to work on, instead of what NEEDED working on. They watch it clearly not working but carried on anyway, because the alternative was to ask me what we should do and that meant the professional or therapist was weak.

It was 4 years before a therapist sat me down and used my own words as a way to heal me. 8 years into my parent carer journey (the first one doesn’t count) and still only the minority of professionals are strong enough to admit when they don’t have the answers. But maybe I do.
But how can the person worth nothing, have the answer?”

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