I have had the wonderful opportunity to spend time around a large variety of people lately. I saw something that made me seethe underneath the surface. I have seen these actions in the past but cannot take it much more.
I am a person who was abused by my stepmother. There was the physical side but the more more harmful side was the mental abuse. You begin to believe what you are being told. Although I was a straight "A" student, I was told that I was stupid. I was told that my mother wasn't a good person and everyone just said that to make me feel better. I was told that her children were more important and I would be gone if she had her way. At 12 I made that happen for her and my father and went to go and live with other family members. Still to this day my father will not admit that there was anything wrong or that anything truly happened. That is probably part of the reason that we don't have a close relationship. I wonder about people who can stick their heads in the sand and be alright with it.
Still today those scars run deep. I have issues thinking I am allowed to strive for something for myself. I am a people-pleaser and have let people walk all over me in the past. I am now learning how to get past this and as I am sure you all have read, will be graduating with a degree in May 2011. I have done this on my own and for myself. It has taken sacrifice on the part of others but I have learned that I need to come first.
As a parent you are there to be your child's protector, disciplinarian and strength, but you aren't there to humiliate your child. Things that you say to your child will not be taken the same as if you said it to your friends. As a parent you are there to lead your child or push them past the anxieties in the world, not cause them to be greater.
I was around a large group of people and one particular person was bullying their child. This wasn't the first time that I had witnessed this but I am hoping that it will be the last. This child has been put down, humiliated and absolutely has not had a chance. This child has bounced back and forth between Mom and Dad and I know that not only the child has problems but the parents do also. This child has the same traits as the parents, the same traits that they are ragging on it for. This child is starting to believe everything that they are being told. And I am frustrated by the ignorance I am seeing from both parents. But underneath all of this I can see a small glimmer of hope. This child has learned what respect is and has shown it on several occasions, even while getting humiliated by the Dad. And that gives me strength.
The next time that something is said tearing this child down I will be the one to take the blows. Although I have worried about what might be said and if there will be hard feelings, I will stand up and be this child's shield. I remember those who would stand up for be and just stand beside me and still to this day I am so thankful for them. Without them I could be a statistic. But because they cared enough to stand up for me I am about to graduate. And one day I will be a mother who will not treat my children the way that I was treated. But for now I will stand up and be an advocate for this child.