Abuse Conditioning

Something I have been thinking about is people who have experienced abuse in their lives and how that shapes them as people. But in particular how destructive it can be if they don't tackle it head on. It is only natural that people who have grown up with some kind of mental or physical abuse either in childhood or relationships will be molded by that to some degree. There are so many ways this can manifest itself in adulthood, whether this be that they attract abusive partners, have low self esteem or become abusers themselves. I mean the list is endless.

I remember a friend who many years ago was in that cycle and kept attracting abusive partners and husbands. It wasn't until she accepted that this was happening that she could change that cycle. It's a very similar situation to one I can see in someone I know now. Anyway going back years I remember that one of the problems that occurred with (let's call her Jane) Jane was that she recognised it and forced herself to look for partners that wouldn't do this. It wasn't an easy task because she was so used to abuse that she just wasn't interested in good guys. I guess that's why we hear about woman who like bad boys and the like, and even though they treat them badly they keep going back for more. This really must lead to a very sad life.

Like Jane used to say, even though she knew that when she was with a good guy that they were everything she deserved, she found herself less and less interested in the good guy, but didn't really know why or how to fix it. She would make all kinds of excuses to try and not deal with it and kept trying to find the bad/negative stuff in the good guy to justify the way she was feeling. In the end she realised that if she didn't put the work into sorting through her negative past she would never be able to have what she deserved.

So anyway, Jane instead of playing tough confided in her partner about how she was feeling and allowed herself to admit to him that she was scared and wanted to do whatever it took to deal with her past and move forward. So instantly they started working together with a therapist and worked through the issues openly. What Jane tells me is that it was enlightening for both of them because it allowed her partner an opportunity to work through some of the different things that he needed to work through. However once they started working together and being open about things with each other there was a new found connection and understanding between them. This wasn't a short term thing it was an evolution but accepting the cause of the problems and realising that they were destroying her she tackled it head on.

I guess this showed her true character, and probably a little stubbornness lol, as she wasn't going to let her past dictate her future. Jane and her now husband have been together for over ten years and it's still going strong.

What I am realising is that it is about human conditioning and must be a very difficult thing to firstly admit to and secondly take action to fix. We naturally as humans don't like thinking our past actually impacts on our present but even I see that in myself. Conditioning always results in a person thinking that it is just who they are and I can see how difficult that is to overcome. We all carry baggage to some degree and having a good future is about doing whatever it takes to deal with the past. The worst case and unfortunately a destructive one is when we bury these things and just think they are gone. I know in the past I have done that but now I realise this is only going to ruin my future. Being human it would be so much easier for us to bury this stuff but I guess it is a test of character to see if we can work through these things to ensure they don't predetermine our future. That's the stubbornness in me coming out.