Wednesday, February 28, 2024

How I'm detoxing the poisonous effects of gaslighting by becoming a human being instead of a human doing

Hello friends of this blog on how I lost 100 pounds without gastric bypass or weight loss drugs. What began with this month's  Happy Heart February weight loss challenge has morphed into an Odyssey of emotional exploration.  I heard a call to go down memory lane, to get to the bottom of my persistent nightmares, CPTSD, toxic shame, chronic guilt and constant sense of failure. I've been blogging about my encounters on this "Camino de Santiago of the soul." 

I've faced the neglect, abandonment, exploitation, passive-aggressive guilting, unmerited punishment, parentification, manipulation, abuse and gaslighting I experienced with open eyes instead of the blind refusal to admit that my parents and stepparents were wrong. I'm beginning to put it all into perspective based on my actual impressions, memories and feelings, not the spun narratives I've been indoctrinated with. I'm saying what happened instead of perpetuating the lies and coverups. 

What I am coming to understand is that those experiences and gaslighting by adults about what was really happening, fed my constant toxic shame, chronic guilt, and sense of lose-lose failure. I began from a very young age, to internalize the gaslighting and even to gaslight myself. This is the nature of the gaslighting beast. It feeds on itself and grows bigger and bigger until it is the only reality you know. If you've ever been chronically gaslit, you know just what I mean. 

The lies, smoke and mirrors create a false world that blots out the real one. Gaslighters are SOOO believable with their manipulation. They don't just lie. It's even worse than that. They distort truth, dismiss other versions, exaggerate your faults and mistakes and refuse to acknowledge their own. They sense your weakness (in my case, raging empath, false responsibility, toxic guilt and shame). Even God was twisted to be an implacable tyrant who expected me to serve everyone to the destruction of myself. 

Weirdly, or not, when you are being gaslit, you understand that it does and should only apply to you. You are the one in the wrong. No one else. Your siblings aren't treated this way. Your parents and stepparents don't treat each other that way. That's because you are the problem. You, in your own little self, are responsible for and routinely fail to provide, others happiness. It makes interacting with others outside your tiny dark gaslit world, virtually impossible. 

You see they aren't experiencing this. They don't see the world as you do. They don't feel the fear, terror, horror, shame, guilt and misery you dwell in. Generally, they misunderstand you or think you're really odd. You often end up bullied and exploited on the outside too. If you do give the impression of fitting in, it's only because you're so good at faking and playing a part. 

And fitting into the real world is an oxymoron too. Gaslighting has told you that common rights are for others but not for you. You've been forced to live by a complicated set of rules and expectations that change at a whim, that others haven't. You are expected to somehow make your way in this foreign place where you don't belong, can't fit in and shouldn't believe you deserve to. Yet you can't ask for help because gaslighting has also told you to keep secrets. They say you're making a scene, lying, making a fool of yourself, showing off or being too sensitive. 
You grow up never even thinking to tell anyone. Here's where it gets even more complicated. You've been told that you're treated as you deserve and that they are always right. BUT they also don't want yo to tell anyone and pull out every shaming tactic they can to keep you quiet. If they really knew you, they'd know they didn't need to. You've breathed in the gas and internalized the lies. You're so busy gaslighting yourself. And you don't want to hurt or upset anyone. You have become the perfect daughter, they expected you to be, but you don't know it because you're so stuck in guilt and shame. 

Little ones, if ANY of this resonates, let me breathe some fresh, clean air into you. See, it doesn't matter how much you give, or do, or love or are. You will never satisfy these black holes. They are bottomless. They just go on taking, digesting you and spitting you out, used up. don't have to do or be or give or love any more than you do. In fact, you can back off on the giving because if you're like me, it's become all you know. 

But it's not. You are person. YOU ARE ENOUGH! YOU ARE LOVEABLE! YOU ARE WHOLE and BEAUTIFUL. You are, to quote P!NK "f-cking perfect." 

I am having to breathe this air too. And after 6 decades of the noxious fumes of gaslighting, it's a sweet perfume. I'm coming out of the cloud of despair, shame and misery. I'm learning that I'm NOT a human doing but a human being. 

This is ALL thanks to my higher power and some very lovely people He put in my life, who call me wife, mom, Omi and friend. I'm not to the promised land yet. But I'm on the camino. Please join me? 

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