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When I was young... - May 24th 2009, 07:27 PM

I've always had this cousin that I've been close to for years. He's four years older than me, and I've always thought that I was lucky that he'd ever give me the time of day.

But now, I find him to be clingy and annoying, like he's still nine years old and hasn't matured since then.

So, him, trying to recognize my problem with him, started to apologize for something that he had done when we were younger.

And it wasn't until then that I started to get flashbacks of this one time that he had provoked me to do something. And it wasn't anything too serious, but I was five at the time. And obviously, what I did wasn't something a five year old should do.

Now these flashbacks are constantly bothering me, and I'm repulsed by him. I tend to see him often and I just want to avoid him now. The mere sight of him bothers me and I just want him to go away. I would talk about what happened with others, but he's my COUSIN. And somehow I think people would find a way to place the blame on me.

I just need a way to stay away from him and not talk about it ever again. Because I want to forget. I just want it all to go away.
   
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Re: When I was young... - May 24th 2009, 08:00 PM

Hey there,

Before I say anything else I want you to remember you don't have to be around anyone you aren't comfortable being around. You don't have to see a person if you don't want to. You don't have to have contact with someone you don't want to be around. No one should force you to see him - you're your own person and you can make your own decisions. If being around him makes you uncomfortable, stay away for a little while, until you're able to sort through how this has made you feel, until you can heal from what happened.

I know that, right now, it might seem easier to just push it all to the back of your head and pretend it never happened. After all, ignoring it could make it seem like it never happened, right? The truth couldn't be farther from this. You can try and block it out, lock up the memories and bottle it all up inside. But, that's only going to hurt you in the long run. This is a lesson you can learn the easy way, or the hard way. Honestly? The only way you're going to be able to heal from what happened is by letting yourself talk about it. Confront the problem sooner rather than later. Ignoring a problem doesn't make it go away, no matter how much we may like to believe that. Ignoring a problem makes everything worse 99% of the time.

Think about seeing a counselor, to help you heal from what happened. Talking about the past is the best way to sort out how you feel about it, and the best way to learn how to move on and cope. Or, if you don't think counseling would be beneficial for you, consider journaling or blogging. Talk to a friend about what happened. When you're having a flashback, don't be afraid to reach out and tell someone. Don't be afraid to call someone up and say, 'Hey, I'm not doing so well right now and I need some help. Could you talk me through this?' or, 'I'm having trouble coping, can you come over?' Because this isn't something you should have to deal with on your own, nor should anyone expect you to be able to handle this on your own. It's a lot to take in, and a lot to know how to cope with, but no matter how hard it is, it's guaranteed to be harder when you don't have any support systems you can rely on.

I don't believe it's possible to forget, until you're able to forgive. Consider talking with your cousin about what happened, if you don't think it would trigger you. It may help you gain some closure, from what happened? In the end, it's up to you. But it's something to think about.

I think it's harder, sometimes, to be hurt by a family member. There's a certain bond of trust between family - you trust they won't hurt you, you know? So when someone does hurt you like this, it can hurt that much more. However, sometimes 'family' is just a label. You need to look past the label of 'cousin'. Just because he's your cousin, doesn't mean it's ok for him to hurt you, you know? If someone places the blame on you, ignore them. Find someone else to talk to, because the ones who place the blame on you aren't worth your time. Abuse is never the victim's fault, and no one asks to be hurt. You deserve to be around people who will support you, not play the blame game.

Anytime you'd like to talk about anything, I'm here, ok? My PM box is always open if you'd like to chat about anything. Take good care of yourself and hang in there. You can heal from what happened. <3



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