a childhood memory

today in therapy eileen mentioned about the difference between how parents think nowadays to how it was when i was a kid. in ireland a lot happened in the 80’s, a lot of things that would not happen nowadays. one of those things was when I was hospitalised for meningitis, I was in the hospital alone. At 7 years of age. No one stayed with me, no one comforted me. It wasnt that my mom and dad didnt want to, they probably did. But it wasnt allowed back then. Parents werent allowed to stay with their kids when they were hospitalised. Stuff about how damaging this was to kids was not taught about back then. Much less was known about attachment and the effects of trauma on early development back then. the reason we talked about this today was because i had remembered being alone in the hospital, and I was very frightened, upset, fearful and sad. i told eileen i remembered being in the operating theatre, getting ready to have a spinal tap done. i remember the nurses telling me to count backwards from 10 to 1 and i’d be asleep by the time i got to 1. i must have been because i dont remember ever getting to 1, I just remember waking up in recovery, alone. this memory is haunting me today. I wanted my mom. I needed her. I needed care and someone to stay with me. Someone to hold my hand, tell me i was ok and it would all be ok. I needed that and I didnt get it. Today in therapy eileen said we cant change the past, we can only resolve it. That message has stuck with me and I’ve been reflecting on it all day. What does resolving it even look like? Eileen says I am doing it now. Because I am doing the hard work of healing. Every time I go to therapy I am healing a little bit more. So why doesnt it feel that way?

Author: Carol Anne

I am a woman in my mid 30's. I'm blind and I have dissociative identity disorder, I also have complex PTSD. I blog about my life with these disorders. I live in Ireland.

10 thoughts on “a childhood memory”

  1. Sometimes therapy feels like re-opening a wound, and yet, once we have expressed the pain there is an opportunity to add new perspective – from a more objective viewpoint, with added maturity and perspective. Also, it helps us to understand what parts of us still need, and address those needs. This part must have felt so scared, and abandoned (who ever heard of leaving kids alone in hospital). How can you help her now?

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      1. One of the things my therapist reccommends is to remind my little one of how resourceful she was – to review her strengths and reassure her that these things are still very much needed. The child you describe must have been very brave and strong.


  2. Hi there,

    I feel really stupid asking this question. And I hope it doesn’t offend you.

    How many alters do you have? I think that is very interesting and I would love to know as I would know who or how many that I can expect so that I can help you.

    No, of course, I am not a therapist. But I can be a friend, and someone who has mental illness on its own. I know that DID is totally different then bipolar, anxiety, PTSD, and anxiety. So, those things are quite easy compared to what you deal with. I meant depression instead of anxiety at the end, bipolar, depression, anxiety, and post dramatic stress disorder. I suffer from that from both my mothers abuse, my father just not caring even though he knew about it. His God was his money not me. And being raped when my son was too. And having him in the bassinet 3 feet from me well it happened. I’m sorry, two months old. I don’t have my keyboard still, hopefully it will come out this coming week.

    I wonder though, what my state is. I can be so tough externally. But when I get so harshly and Krully dealt with, for example, my father, I turn into a week, and basically balled up set of fearful child. It’s not something that I do often. But I can’t be intimidated. If I am, that’s what happens. Either that, or I end up being psycho bitch. And of course, that doesn’t leave a good taste in people’s mouth 🙂

    I have been speaking with my psychiatrist. About the rage that I have about the guy who intentionally gave me a concussion. So, that has been an issue. Like you, I am going to start therapy. Unfortunately though. I can only see him once every two weeks. So, it’s a little hard. But my psychiatrist would rather see me less, and then have the money for a therapist.

    Like you and your alters, is a therapist that I trust. I have never been so confident and comfortable and relaxed except with him. So, here goes.

    Sorry about the long reply. I just wanted you to know you’re not alone in being fearful and all that. And wanting to know how many alters you have. Again, that will help me know what to do and how to help. I know you didn’t ask, but I still want to if it’s OK.



    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m sorry you had to deal with it in such a young age, it’s awful that no one was beside you there. I think I can easily rlate, I mean I never was left completely alone at hospital, there always was any of my parents or at least they visited me frequently, but I can relate because of my boarding school experience. It was about 400 km from my home and I was left there when I was five, it was totally scary and maybe bcause I went there in such a young age I never fully adapted to live there, even though I spent there about ten years. So yeah, I know how it is to be on your own as a child, it is awful, I’m really sorry that it hurts you so badly, but so it is with memories. I think your process of healing really goes forward, maybe you, being in the centre of it, don’t see it so clearly, but if you could look at yourself from the outside perspective, I think you’d agree with me, it’s visible that you’re healing. Hope it’s comforting for you, but I know that it is a painful and slow process, full of hurting memories. But you’re doing really well!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve found that when you have more memories to heal than you can count, it takes a long time to finally see the results and feel the progress you’ve made. You ARE making progress though…always moving a little step forward, day by day. xx

    Liked by 1 person

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