Stress and Understanding

Everyone claims to have had a hard childhood, but I’m sure this one takes the cake. I’ll make this short and simple: my mom’s second husband abused me from the age of about 9 until I was 14 and my mother divorced him. I won’t give the gruesome details, but I know this experience has taught me a lot about how to look at people. While some people use their past as an excuse to do “bad” things, I refuse to let the past influence me in that way. Instead, I’ll use it to change the way I react to things people say, and how others act around me. I come in contact with a lot of bullying, whether direct or indirect, and I usually can brush it off. Everyone has a bad day, and everyone says something they don’t mean when they’re upset or disappointed. And granted, no one should be given the right to take out their emotions on anyone else, but I’m naturally a very forgiving person. The way I was treated as a child taught me that everyone has something going on in their life, even if you don’t see it. My mother has fibromyalgia, a chronic disease that causes her to be in constant pain and have almost a total lack of energy. This left her out of work, leaving my step dad to bring home the bacon. There were three of us kids, all school-aged, a large house to be cleaned, medications for my mother to be paid for, and work. And he’d been in the military in his younger 20’s. So even at a young age, I had to learn the hard way that the way people are brought up severely affects the way they treat others in their adult life, and common, everyday stresses add to that. In the end, I learned that I have to be forgiving, to see things from their perspective, and be understanding because I don’t have a clue as to what they may or may not be going through.

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