Restless Thoughts: Worthlessness [March 19.19]

Sensitive content warning: This entry contains subjects relating to sexual assault, child rape & rape, as well as abuse, please put yourself first before reading something that may make you feel uncomfortable or unsafe. Lots of love, Aurelie.

March. 19. 2019

I’ve always struggled with doubting my self-worth. When I was a child, I wasn’t charismatic like my brother, and I wasn’t likeable like my sister. I was the classic case of the middle child, not quite good enough, not quite bad enough, people often forgot there was three of us, and my personality also didn’t match with any direct members of my family. I was a child most alive in the privacy of my own head. Inspired by any strong women I could find in various types of media, I would walk my dog at night and imagine patrolling my neighbourhood like Buffy, I would climb the worn furniture of my house with a cap hanging off my back like Cybersix, I would turn around broken apart broom handles and protect my (nonexistent) friends from evil beings with my love like Sailor Moon. I was odd, this - I eventually learned - was okay, but not when it should have been okay for me to be odd.

It wasn’t until adulthood that I realize truly how deep the scar goes when you are raised with violence and in violence - when adulthood mostly consists of having to recover from your childhood. I continue, at almost 28 years old, to remember bits and pieces, ways I was made to feel absolutely worthless, and that that worthlessness was my natural state. That there was no way around it. From an English teacher complaining to my parent that I was in their class at all because I simply wasn’t ever going to amount to anything, I was a literal waste of time. To my biological mother sending me abroad at 12 years old because I simply was too much of a hassle to understand, compared to my brother and my sister. Why wasn’t I like the others? Why did I prefer to sit on my own and read, rather than go out? Why couldn’t I socialize with the children my age? Why did I have to respond to teachers and elder’s questions with my own questions? To my maternal grandmother who, also, found it too difficult to “get” me and sent me to other family members, and then other family members, and round and round it goes, like something nobody is able to find a purpose or place for.

I could go on with these experiences, with all the ways and all the words that have led me to carry with me this deep sense of completely worthlessness. I don’t know how to put down this luggage. I carry it wherever I go and I take it to bed with me at night. I can’t lovers hold it for me, and I’m too scared to weight it and find out exactly how much it is that I have been dragging around for so long. When I was sexually assaulted at 13 by a family member, and then again at 17 also by a family member, I buried what happened to me so deeply it almost felt like I had prepared a place for it inside of myself before any of it had even happened. I place trauma on top of trauma, and everything fit neatly like a baggage from the same place, same size, same colour, perhaps different weight. I attempted to talk about it, but where I needed to find trust and support I found none. Another bag, fitting neatly. I did not know at the time, and it took a while until I did, that it was okay for me to be a victim. That I had been a victim of abuse and violence more than once in my life and that not only was it not my fault, but it also was not my destiny. This worthlessness I felt did not excuse the treatment I received from others. Such an excuse does not exist. It is so hard to talk about trauma in general let alone your own, as familiar as it may be to you. I do not know whether you ever end up knowing all of its layers, I do not know how truly deep such a wound can go.


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