The term, adult child, keeps surfacing as I research in preparation to write and publish my first book.
The term doesn’t suggest that an adult is childish in their ways. Instead, the term refers to an adult who experienced trauma as a child. They are also known as a survivor. Personally, I totally get that name – adult child. You are presently an adult but are still connected to the child who suffered trauma. Your connectedness shows the most when you are triggered.
My Truth is that I’m an expert at being triggered. For instance, anytime someone says anything that I perceive as a put down I become the child. My mother, bless her, did not know any other way to communicate but direct. In fact, she is still that way today.
Right or wrong, she will not hesitate to call me fat. If my hair doesn’t look the way she thinks it should, she’s going to say something. It’s never in the loving tone I craved for so many years. There is never any form of flattery. It’s just her opinion cold, raw, and straight to the point.
No one can trigger me as quickly as my mother can. I guess it’s because I immediately revert back to the child who’s feelings were hurt when ever my mother made a disparaging comment. All I wanted was her love and adoration. The problem is she did not know how to give it. In fact, it was never given to her.
It took me years to realize that my mother was damaged by my grandmother. My grandmother who was not affectionate treated my mother like a huge inconvenience. She didn’t even allow her to call her mom or mother. Nor was I (the eldest grandchild) allowed to call her anything but her first name – Jean.
Jean abandoned my mother when she was four years old. My mother has always been proud that she never abandoned me. I too am grateful that she at least broke the cycle of abandonment.
To be continued…