Trauma is drama for your therapist.
It’s taken me nine years to say….
Ok, now I’ve really got to be serious about hammering out the wounds, holes and questions of my trauma around coming out.
Coming out for me was a 9 year affair. There wasn’t a palm leave parade for my entry into the rainbow kingdom or a really long party of celebration. For me, it was utter rebuking of my identity.
Let me explain…
From a young age I was submersed in southern Baptist culture and rhetoric.
And even though I had spiritual awakenings during my youth, became extremely passionate about ministry, the Bible and the mystery of God – I was mislead in the importance of questioning, wrestling and truly studying the Bible past text.
When I left my small hometown for college I was truly unaware of two valuable things: How Jesus viewed my entire being and that I was queer.
When the tides shift from sheltered rural youth to young adult, I was hit with sexuality as an issue – “I can’t be gay.”
“How could this be right? My parents had raised me to hate blacks, people of color, queer people and anything unlike the white race.”
This sentence alone still makes me shift in my seat. God have mercy.
I shunned myself based off of what I had been told to think and believe. Then I was shunned for the disappointment and pain I “inflicted” on family members. It was a vicious cycle. It took years to come to a point where I was comfortable in my own skin. I then just decided to tolerate my family’s reactions toward my sexuality. That meant being the burnt of jokes, being yelled at, hearing terrible things said about me and my community and lastly being told I was going straight to double HE hockey sticks…
That’s a lot of trauma drama – tons really.
Over the years, I developed a sense of fight or flight mentality. I can do all things. I can overcome this. I am the strongest and so on. I may have overcome certain things, but the lasting affect of not dealing with that hurt of rejection was slowly impacting my daily life.
I began to drink more. I began to sleep less. I worked out way too much. I argued with coworkers. I hated most people around me. My ideas became the only ones that mattered. Eventually, it boils over and it did for me. My panic attacks were becoming unreal. My ability to process simple things was immense difficult. I just couldn’t function on the idea “I could overcome this…”
In January I will begin therapy. This means legit talking out my feelings with a human being. This use to terrify me and today it thrills me. If I allowed 9 years of family trauma to continue to build over me, I would start to become one bitter person. The truth is I can’t do it on my own. I’ve tried. I need help with creating boundaries, safe spaces and road maps for success. And, there’s nothing wrong with this.
Trauma is not for your mama, your partner or even your best friend. Trust me no one needs to be burdened or asked to enter into a conversation dealing with deeply hurtful emotions. They simply aren’t qualified to navigate them with you and it could eventually hurt your relationship to share those intimate details.
Besides, who wouldn’t want to have a safe space to dump all your woes and get help at the same time without annoying loved ones?
If you’re dealing with stuff – consider saving the trauma for your therapist. It might just save your life and your relationship.