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Childhood Trauma and patterns and rising above.

Childhood Trauma and patterns and rising above.

My father had a lot of demons like most of us do. Probably stemming from his own privileged yet messy upbringing. Parents who fought, a domineering mom and being too sheltered. My dad was a good guy for the most part. Non confrontational, liked to drink and read and write and have fun. But when life got messy or problems came he did not have coping skills and resorted to drinking or hiding and cowering and running away. he could not even discipline us as kids. He did not know how to handle anything tough or say No. Later he gave into his insecurities and fears turned abusive to my mom. Alcoholic and eventually committed suicide. For many years as a teenager I hated him. If I’m honest I found him a coward and did not understand him vowing to never be like him or date anyone like him. later as I worked on my many years of healing and forgiveness and understanding, I set on a deliberate path to learn as much as I could about my dad and his childhood by asking a lot of questions to many people. And compassion flooded my heart. He was just a man who did not know how to cope with hardship because of many complex things surrounding how he was brought up. He was a babied controlled mamas boy who was always told what to do or was just stuck.

Now the funny thing is when I begun dating from the age of 18 I found myself attracting men who had almost the same problems my dad had. Either drinking too much or indecisive and weak when it came to making decisions and standing up for anything and giving up fast even though loving and never abusive. I detested these characters in them and always walked away eventually but asked myself why I was attracting the things I hated in my dad.
And it took many years to notice these patterns and deliberately work on healing all the wrong patterns I picked up from childhood subconsciously, including wrong attachment patterns, what love is and how it behaves. Changing subconscious patterns takes conscious effort and work.

When my sister got engaged years ago I think it was a huge turning point for me to actually see a different kind of man before me. I had seen men in my family be things I despised and it made me wonder if different existed. My brother in law did not grow up with a dad and he and his bro were raised by a single mom but he became someone who has shown me that there are men who know what they want, fight for it and make commitments and stick to them. He knew the moment he saw my sister that he would marry her even though they were both seeing other people and he patiently waited and 5 years later he got her. And it was not without effort and consistency on his part. He made purposeful effort to win her heart and prove his love by being there and never leaving. And even now 6 years later I still am in awe of him. I grew up with a dad who was hardly in the house but out drinking with friends all the time and just A stranger. Never talked to us or spent time with us. My brother in law is always home. If he is not working he indoors playing with his kids and spending time with his wife and kids. He and my sister go everywhere together and they are friends. He enjoys her company and is happy to be at home with his family He works through issues and does not run away or shut off. He communicates.

I remember crying during their engagement /ruracio when I was asked to pray thanking God for giving my sister a good man.

My point with this long post is that even though we all have demons and issues and childhood traumas we don’t have to turn into our parents or carry generational patterns. We can choose to do the painful work needed to transform these patterns. I know for me I’m aware of the patterns that have threatened to destroy me and it’s not easy but I try hard to work through every one that shows up so that I can be different. And that shit isn’t easy especially when you’re coming from heavy trauma, depression, suicides and mental illnesses in your generations but it’s possible once you see it. Just like my brother in law decided he would be different from his dad and be there for his kids and wife and value family.

We don’t have to do what has been done. we can take the leap into conscious living and healthy living and even seek help when we feel stuck in harmful patterns.

Mwendwa Mbaabu

Writer|Life Coach|INFJ
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