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The Child & The Woman

It’s a constant battle.
The little girl versus the woman.
I have these moments of clarity where –
I see what I deserve and I feel my worth,
but it is so fleeting.

Followed by the howls of self-blame, and the feelings of shame, and self-doubt.

How hurt they must be. 
If only I had given more, 
Loved harder, 
Been more patient.

Wait – 

What about my hurt?
Their intentional malice, 
Their intention to shame and belittle. 
Their own anger so overwhelming that I become their undeserving target? 

I did give all I had; 
I always have. 
I am loving as hard as I can; 
though it is exploited. 
My patience so immense; 
I have enabled the behavior. 

How do I make it stop? 
This pain that I feel, 
and the conflict within.

This little girl; 
Why does she blame herself when others hurt her? 
Why does she question her value? 
Why does she allow others to betray her over, and over, and over? 
Why does she cry silent tears?

The residual pain of a childhood full of fear and insecurity. 
The imprinted beliefs that this is all she is deserves. 
The conditioned understanding that betrayal is natural. 
The presumption that her self-worth is contingent on how people treat her. 

It is what she knows. 
It is how she responds. 
And so, 
It is how I respond.  

She is hurting so much – I am hurting so much. 
She is me. 

It’s a constant battle. 
The little girl versus the woman. 
I have these moments of clarity where –
I see what I deserve and I feel my worth 
But it is so fleeting.


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6 thoughts on “The Child & The Woman

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  1. Very true. I suffer from PTSD and am now awakening to the damage and deep chasm separating both my child and adult self and how each struggles to grow.

  2. Right to the point. What has made it worse for me is that I also have bipolar disorder and I had to quit work in 06, I am 54 now. I struggled with financial independence for 30 yrs and failed in the end. disability denied me 3 times. I ended up back dependent on the same people who abused me! I had a pattern of choosing abusive men (I finally just stopped with men altogether) and my last husband died in ’17 and I secured a VA pension of $750 mo that I just got last month that I now have to live on. I am lucky to have that and I am now saving my $ to buy an RV to live in and struggling to get out of this house. I should be able to get out in April. They still think they can hit me. My Dad has come after me, fist drawn, pushed me down, called the cops and told them I hit him. They have tried to get me in trouble several times, but I have learned to remain calm and not to get arrested. Your poem helped me today. Thank you.

  3. And just to say, I am sorry, but my abuse wasn’t sexual, I am sorry, i didn’t mean to infringe on your page. My abuse was just brutal and violent. And a lot of gaslighting.

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