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My parents got divorced when I was nine and my mom was forced out of our lives. I was forced to raise my 2 sisters because my mom wasn't allowed. My dad would go to work at 2 in the morning and wouldn't come home till after 10 pm.
He never cared to be home and if he was home he yelled at us for having the house a mess because we were 12, 9 and 6 and we could barely cook and clean on our own. He also never bought us healthy groceries. We lived off spaghetti o's and cream corn. We were always very hungry.
One time our house was so cold we went to the neighbors to be warm because the trailors pilot light went out and we got yelled at for trying to be warm. It seemed like all he ever did was yell at us and when he was married he always yelled then too. He got remarried when I was 14 and the wife then secluded me from the family.
She made my dad hate me to where I couldn't come out of my room and made him send me to juvenile detention because I hung out with my friends. I never did drugs or drank alcohol because I hate both and can't stand them and I also had the 2 most catholic friends you could ever have.
I worked 2 jobs every summer and had a full-time job while keeping a 3.5 GPA. I moved out when I was 17 to get away from all of that and things couldn't be better! Unfortunately I get mad at such little things and everything bugs me. My fiance doesn't, because his parents were good to him and didn't yell all the time and were always there for him.
I feel like my dad made me the way I am now because I shouldn't yell when I do and I don't know how to control it. I would appreciate any advice I could get. I don't want my kids like me nor do I want my fiance to be mad like I am.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello Samantha, and thanks for telling your story here. Your story is very moving. You are apparently a very good person, who was the victim of extreme neglect and verbal abuse when you were a child. It seems to me that you see things quite clearly.
I strongly believe the exercises I will recommend will help you tremendously.
Start by telling the full story of the neglect and trauma of your childhood according to the journaling process described on this page. No one has to read this but you, and the benefit is for you in the focus and clarity required to tell the full story in detail.
Then I suggest you use these imagery processes to revisit your past. Go and find that little Samantha who had too much responsibility too soon, and take her by the hand and say, "It's over now. You don't have to do this any longer. You can come with me, and I will take care of you." Follow the other guidelines, and this will help you a lot. Use this approach with every memory of neglect and abuse that you can recall.
Start a daily anger journal as described here above, and this will help you understand, direct and contain your anger. Train your mind to shift focus from what upsets you to what feels good, using the positive journaling process described in the same link above. This is extremely helpful, and I suggest you do it on an ongoing basis, no matter what.
You are a good person, Samantha, and your desire to be a good wife and mother are a reflection of that. Focus on your goodness.
Use these tools consistently, and you will definitely see some good results.
My very best to you,
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