Fears and depression: how our emotions affect our kids

Tiffany - posted on 11/23/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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So as a survivor I am really struggling with my fears and depression. Kids are so suceptible to your emotions and I worry about transferring my fears (of really just about everything) to my daughter. I am also struggling so much with depression and she often looks at me confused becuase she knows I am sad but I have a smile on my face. Does anyone have any ideas as far as how to handle these things so that I dont end up hurting my daughter with my own fears and emotions. I dont want her to grow up afraid of the world. Or thinking that its her fault in any way that mommy is often sad.

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Tiffany - posted on 02/22/2010

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Amanda,

Yes I did report it. It was terrifying and I wish I didnt some days becuase it did nothing but cuase more problems for me. I wanted it reported anoyomously but they called it a domestic violence case not a rape case (which as you can imagine really hurt for them to take that away from me) and said it was mandatory that they investigate which led to them talking to him and it being his word over mine. They told me the DA wouldnt do anything and convinced me to drop the charges. So all it ended up doing was making things worse and making me more afraid becuase then he knew I got the police involed and he wasnt happy about that. So I ended up having to move just to stay safe. They told me that to get a protection order you have to go through court as well so I didnt even think I could get that.

I was with a few men after that (Since it was my first experience with sex my first reaction was to see if all sex was going to be like that) Not my proudest moment but thats how I ended up with my daughters father. Since I'm a single mom you can tell that didnt go so well then either and I left him becuase I was afraid of getting hurt again. He was an alcoholic and was punching holes in walls and my thought was when is it going to be me? Will all of this happen again? But as I was in love with him, (really still am in some aspects. I miss the good times at least) we continued to see eachother (just not live together) and then my daughter came along and he didnt grow up or stop drinking and I knew it wasnt safe for her to be in that kind of a life so I left him completely.

I havent been with anyone since. My choices in men havent been the greatest so far and I fear not only that I might get raped again or be in another abusive relationship but now I have a fear for my daughter as well and I dont know how to overcome it.

One thing that has helped me is a book called "After Silence: Rape and My Journey Back" though it is about stranger rape she touches on all the emotions that I have/ and have had and I found it really encouraging. It is triggering though so be careful if you decide to look into it. The other help I've found is counseling. There are a lot of great programs out there that can help like RAINN and RAAP that I believe are nationwide if you want to check into them. I'm still in therapy and dealing with it. I found that just going to any old counselor want good enough since they didnt understand the depths of what it does to a person so I found a specific counselor for rape and violence trauma. I dont know that I will ever not be dealing with it again (so i totally understand how you feel there) but I know that the road has to get easier eventually.

With the counseling I have learned to accept that I am not and will never be the woman that I once was and its getting easier to deal with that fact. I consider the day i was raped to be a second birthday. A more sadistic (I think thats the right word) birthday but a day to remember and "celebrate" in my own way just the same. Becuase it is the day that I survived and the day that a new me was born. I am no longer a victim or a statistic. I am a SURVIVOR.

Anyways I hope you find this encouraging and I would be happy to keep sharing and talking with you if you want in messages. Its kinda nice to finally have someone to talk to actually. I hope you are well and safe Amanda. God Bless

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Amanda - posted on 02/18/2010

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Hi Tiffany , did you ever report what your old boyfriend did or like me was to scared or ashamed i find it hard to find and trust someone in a relatioship. I had a boyfriend a yr ago but after 4 months when things were getting more serious i ended it because i was frightened something would happen again but i wish i had stayed with him sometimes its so confusing even though it happened yrs ago i don't think iv ever got over it.

Tiffany - posted on 02/18/2010

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Amanda,
Thanks for sharing your story. My rape was from my boyfriend at the time. He was my first experience with sex which has made future relationships hard (but since I have a daughter I guess I've least gotten over it somewhat. lol) He got me pregnant but I thankfully lost that baby. I know it sounds creul to be thankful for a miscarraige and I do think of that baby sometimes and miss "her" but I cant imagine what that babys life would have been like knowing her father was a rapist. I dont know how your boys do it. But I am kinda glad that you told them. You should not have to be ashamed for what he did to you. Great job!

Your story gives me hope though becuase your sons grew up to understand what it is and that it is life changing and will not do that same thing to thier girlfriends/wives down the road. Maybe some of the lessons will help my little girl down the road. Maybe she can be wary instead of fearful and can still grow up and have a happy and full life despite my fears and emotions and abnormal reactions to normal things. lol

You stay safe as well!

Amanda - posted on 02/17/2010

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I was raped by my partner we had been together for 6yrs and got 2 kids together , it was just after i'd had my 2nd son that it happened he said i was being fridged i told him iv just had a baby thats why i wasn't in the mood, I didn't report it and i stayed with him for another yr but we were never the same and he left me ( for my best friend ) thank god. my boys father stopped seeing them 7yrs ago and we have no contact at all my boys are now 16 and 18 they know what happened there very angry rightfully so. I wish i had reported him when it happened but he told me because he was my partner the police wouldn't listen to me and i beleived him i also was worried i didn't want my family knowing what he had done to me.
He admitted he did it years later to his now ex wife she beleived me because she was my ex- best friend. i understand how you feel depressed im the same and somedays i feel my emotions have rubbed off on my boys....
keep safe
amanda x

Tiffany - posted on 01/13/2010

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Thanks Rosanna. I am on depression meds now (this last post was pretty old) and were getting it worked out okay. :) 9 outof 10 days now I feel I can get out of bed and move on. Therapy is good too. I just started with a therapist a few months ago. We focused on non-rape related things for a long time until I felt safe enough to go into it a little bit with her last week. But then of course as life would have it I feel and busted my knee up. Doc says its not broken but I'm crutches and as its my driving foot I wont be able to make it in to therapy for about 6 weeks which really sucks.



Opening up to my therapist is good but it put me in a place of fear and nightmares again by bringing up so many memeories. I think I am starting to understand though that hiding all my emotions from my daughter is no better than showing them because she is sensing it and feels better when I cry and then tell her I'm okay then when I hold it in and she looks at me like why are you sad? So I will continue with it as soon as I am able.



I've already made her afraid of the dark. Not on purpose of course but I am afriad of the dark and she senses that and now is afraid too when the lights go out so now we sleep with a nightlight together. lol I guess she will grow out of it eventually.



Rosanna can I ask you how you deal with it with your kids? Do they know? Did you keep it a secret? Do you have a spouse or someone who supports you in this?

Rosanna - posted on 01/12/2010

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I know the feeling. It really is a hard thing to deal with. The depression is something you really need to work on because your health is very important. If your not healthy you cant be there for your kids. You really need support from friends, family and from people that understand what your going through. Talking to your doctor is really something you should think about. Depression medication may be something you should consider, it does not mean your crazy. Sometimes you just need a little help. Therapy is another thing you should look into. I know all of that can be pricey so I understand if that's not an option. Your in here reaching out so your on the right path. I know you don't know me but if you ever need to talk you can send me a message anytime. It really does help, I know it did for me. It's gonna be a long hard road but your a survivor and no one can take that away from you. Remember there is people out there waiting to help, don't be afraid to reach out to them. I'm here if you need it.. :-)

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