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The Cycle of Abuse

Updated on May 7, 2011

From Generation to Generation

The cycle

AbuseĀ is an on-going problem all around the world. Women and children are being mentally and phycially abused behind closed doors. It's the dirty little secret that no-one wants to expose, for fear it will escalate. Families are being shattered and heart-broken, alienated and alone and fearful for their lives. How can one person cause so much harm in a family?

My story;

For me, it was my father. I hated and dispised this man and even wished he were dead. What anger, hate and unforgiveness I carried in my heart for years. This was personal. I had witnessed his mental and physical abuse everyday of my childhood life. We (my mother and my siblings) were called worthless names while he drink himself to death. I carried the memories with me for years and the dysfunction layed it's foundation for my life. Does this sound at all familiar to you?

As I said...this was personal. A personal attack towards me. This is where I went wrong. Of course I didn't realize this for years. For years I had a different view-point of myself. Why? Because I was under the influence of my fathers distorted beliefs. And why? Because i lived with it for thirteen years of my life. But it didn't stop there. I carried it over into my relationships. I was called un-worthy by my father, so I felt un-worthy. I sought out men who would treat me the way he thought I should be treated. I was filled with shame, hate, embarrasment, bitterness, resentment, anger, revenge and unforgiveness. The abuse surly had an impact on my life and on the lives of those I came into contact with. I also had trust issues and self-esteem issues, therefore genuine love was void in my life. I was a mess for years.

Several years after my father and mother divorced I decided to go to Al-anon. I found some answers there. I was at the end of my rope. Nothing was working in my life, at least not with the information I had been carrying around. I didn't realize this dysfunction I was carrying didn't actually belong to me. It was something my father was dealing with in his own way. So..I went to my father (even though I was scared as hell) and asked him what had happened to him growing up. He actually answered me! He said his mother had left him when he was thirteen. I then put the pieces together. He was angry at his mom and he was lashing out at and on his present family. His past had carried over into his life and mine. I had become a product of his anger and betrayal.

Was I able to forgive him? Yes! Because it wasn't about me. It was his perception of women. It was no longer personal. Does it make what he did right? No! But I understand it better now. I no longer blame him. If we can understand where it stems, we can forgive. It can stop with us. My father had unresolved issues and it destroyed him, but it doesn't have to destroy me. I am steps closer to my own healing.

This cycle runs in a lot of families and ruins a lot of families lives. It begins with unresolved issues and these unresolved issues can pass from generation to generation destroying everyone in it's path. Just like a tornado. Any little thing (usually a similarity or reminder of their past) can set one off and the family suffers the consequences.

We don't have to be victims to this type of behavior any longer. There may not have been programs available then, but there are programs available now. This doesn't have to control our lives in the here and now. It can stop with us, dead in it's tracks. We can learn to have more functional and rewarding lives, but we need to take the first step towards our own recovery. The pain needs to end and not manifest itself into our families. There is hope, but we need to seek it. Our lives and the lives of those we love are worth the effort! We no longer have to walk in the shadows of abuse and have it last a lifetime for our loved ones. We have the power to change it! Thank you for listening and I hope and pray my story may save and create a loving and caring family.


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    • Mac Singh profile image

      Navjot Singh Pelia 5 years ago from Okemos, MI

      wow, really awesome... i would've never figured it out.... u must be very brave.. writing a hub about our personal situation is really very difficult..... i hope u'll stay the same rest of ur lyf...... thts what i call "Positive attitude"

    • Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

      Jo_Goldsmith11 6 years ago

      What a beautiful hub! You are so courageous! You have my sympathy and empathy. It sounds like how my earth dad was. When I accepted Christ, I felt the love of what a real dad is suppose to be. I will keep you in prayers and in my heart! Let your beckon of hope shine to all those who hurt! May God continue to bless you!

    • drpastorcarlotta profile image

      Pastor Dr. Carlotta Boles 6 years ago from BREAKOUT MINISTRIES, INC. KC

      Telling your story is a healing!!! AMEN!!! God is with you always!!! Voted-Awesome! I have missed you! Come visit me when you have time. Be Blessed!!!

    • GarnetBird profile image

      Gloria Siess 6 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      These programs are so important and powerful. Thank you for writing this and sharing your pain.

    • C-Bless profile image

      C-Bless 6 years ago from Canada

      Your name says it all - Time Heals All. As you told your story, it reminded me of Joyce Meyer, and how time served her so well. Prayerfully, each day will solidify your healing. Thank you for sharing. Be blessed...

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Beautifully done I loved this. Please let us not forget though that men and husbands can be subject to abuse by their families and partners too.

    • dotty1 profile image

      dotty1 6 years ago from In my world

      Thank you for this has personal meaning to me and it has made me realise..When you are young and you experience things from your parents which may be 'not quite right ' or 'made you feel sad' you think that it must be right because they are you parents.. but then once adult you realise that even parents can be wrong..they are human too with past childhoods etc...the realisation is hard to deal with sometimes and I can relate to you saying that things keot going wrong for you you strong you are you have addressed your issues and now are in a much more understanding place. hats off to you x

    • Michael Adams1959 profile image

      Michael Adams1959 6 years ago from Wherever God leads us.

      What an awesome transparent testimony laying it all out. Abuse is so hard to bring out. Most feel shame of thinking they somehow deserved it. I am glad you recognized in time that it was not personal nor your fault. Fortunately for you, you are healing guess your name here says it best~~ Time heals all