-- Excerpt Taken From Wounded Soul--
I know a few young men that have always chased money because they were tired of being without. They didn’t want to live as an adult as they did when they were children. Young folks do the exact same thing. What they can’t find at home—they try to find elsewhere. That is why you see young people acting out, joining gangs, in the streets, and looking for attention wherever they can get it. The young person might not always be doing the right thing, but at least someone is paying attention to them and recognizing them for it.
I think folks forget that negative attention is still attention! A lot of times, a young child who finds out they are not special to anyone looks for someone to be special too.
Young people and children thrive on love and support from their parents and family. When that love and support is not there—or even perceived not to be there—resentment starts to form from within. The respect for the parents and family starts to diminish, and they open their eyes to other possibilities for attaining it.
One of the harshest things I believe that can ever happen to a young kid is that there is a noticeable difference between how they are treated compared to their brothers and sisters or other children within the same household. I was having a conversation with someone I know who had also been raised in a blended family.
Her problem started with the treatment of her birth father. He never wanted her. He did not want to have his hand in raising her, but he had more children with another lady. Her siblings even went to the same school, but she was publicly shunned by her birth father in front of them. He would say, “Don’t talk to her. She’s not your sister.”
She explained how rough her first years were. Her siblings lived a better life with her father and stepmother. She explained that she had shed way too many tears at the mention of the differences that were made between her and her younger siblings. This was because her birth father was not willing to be a true father to her. When a child or a person is pushed to the side—and another takes their place—there is a feeling of abandonment.
I knew the feeling of abandonment, and no matter how much I wanted to rid myself of these feelings, they would not go away easily. Sadness grows within because of the separation; a deep-rooted hurt begins to form because this pain was not supposed to come from the person who was supposed to love them. In my opinion, it may be better sometimes for a child’s parent to die than for a child to grow up and feel or know that the parent doesn’t love them.
There is a pain that comes from not knowing who your parents are, but there is a greater pain in my opinion from knowing who your parents are and realizing they don’t want you or love you.
I went through a period where I felt my father did not love me the same way he loved the other kids. I knew my dad loved me, and I felt like he wanted me, but it crushed me to think I was not special to him anymore. I could not figure out what I had done to push him to that point. Maybe everything I did finally wore him out, and the greatest guy in the world to me no longer cared the same way for me. The pain tore me apart on the inside! I didn’t know what to do with it. Instead of discussing it with my dad, I just got angry about it. Once the bitterness set in concerning this, my thoughts were set. Nobody could have changed my mind.
I also had a couple of friends whose fathers died when they were young. They didn’t deal with the issue of abandonment, but they still dealt with the pain of the loss or just not knowing their fathers. I had a buddy who was raised by his father’s mother. His grandmother was a nice lady, but for years, I thought his parents were dead. One day, his mom was visiting him with his younger siblings and her man. His siblings lived with his mom. I could visibly see why he didn’t talk about his mom. My buddy was always in broke-down clothes and shoes, and his siblings were dressed to impress in nice clothes, nice shoes, and nice haircuts.
My boy’s grandparents were really old. His grandfather needed a full-on health-care provider, and his grandmother was doing everything she could, but she wasn’t in the best health. I found out later that his mom didn’t want to raise him because his dad was never around. I don’t know why he needed to be put out because of this. It was like he was being punished for another person’s crime. He didn’t care for his mom—I am putting it nicely—and the cold part was, she did not live that far away from us. This was a pain for my friend. It was easier for him to not talk about his mother than to discuss how she made him feel. I absolutely hated his mom. I couldn’t believe she would do him like that. He was my boy. He deserved better. He was a good kid—way better than me—but I kept my feelings to myself. It was bad enough already for my boy.
Trying to cope with the hurt that stemmed from my father probably brought me more pain than anything that person who caused me great physical harm could have done to me. There was physical pain for sure, and it absolutely caused some issues within me. The pain I felt with the loss of my dad overwhelmed me. He didn’t die or anything like that, but I felt a separation I had never felt.
My dad was right there with me in the same house, yet the tear in our relationship was difficult for me to bear. No matter how much I wanted to put my dad back on that pedestal I created for him; I could not. I could not take away his actions, and when he didn’t choose for me, I could not accept it. I had seen it with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears. I could not reason myself out of what I knew. He had chosen someone else, and I couldn’t accept it.
I am not saying that my thought process was right or good, but it was how I thought during this time. I wasn’t in a good place. I was driven by anger, fed by resentment, fueled by hate, and strengthened by vengeance. Anytime a person’s actions are driven by several wounded feelings and emotions; you better believe they are not thinking normally and acting normally.
I did not know at the time that pain has the ability to drive you out of your mind, nor did I know the pain from your wounds had the ability to kill you from within. I never thought about how many people had taken their own lives because they could not deal with the pain from within. I was so wrapped up in myself during this time in my life that—even if I had heard it—I probably would not have noticed it.
Pain and suffering have a way of isolating you. You start to think that you are the only person in the world who is going through this—and nobody can understand or feel what you are going through. I definitely felt alone. People were all around me, but nobody was close enough to truly touch me.
It was a lonely path to walk. I was isolated beyond my limits. My idle mind easily became the devil’s playground. There is a hopelessness that comes from this. I liken this to being lost in the middle of a jungle. Danger is all around you. You are terrified at the thought of making the wrong move. Your food and water are depleted, and you are feeling crushed by the weight of the fear that encompasses you. The more you walk in any direction, the more lost you feel. The more lost you feel, the more hopeless you become. The more hopeless you become, the less you feel that you can be saved. This is one of the reasons why people who walk down this path for whatever reason have a hard time finding their way home.
-- Excerpt Taken From Wounded Soul--
BOOK: Wounded Soul: Death Lived Inside Me