19 Jan

Growing up in my home wasn’t always easy. My older siblings had some problems that caused a lot of drama in our lives. My oldest brother was a pathological liar and had some mental issues. In simple terms, it meant that when he lied about something, which he did often, he truly believed he wasn’t lying. He could convince himself that what he was saying was true, and then get upset because no one believed him. You could watch him do one thing, and then tell you point-blank he did another, and truly believe he was being honest. I can’t imagine what it was like for him growing up, but I do know how it affected me.

Many nights were filled with drawn out arguments, my parents knowing my brother was lying, and him believing he was telling the truth. I have watched my mother practically throw my brother’s things out the door one evening, and hold onto him, begging him to stay the next. It was very confusing as a child, to see all of this play out. My brother also had some violent tendencies as well as drug problems. It was always scary when he would lose control when my dad wasn’t home. I remember seeing my mom pinned behind a door a few times, and they had to take away his bats and hockey sticks.

One year when I was about 8 or 9, I had a very nice birthday party at the park. It was a beautiful day to be outside, I had great friends, and I got all the toys I had asked for. The only problem was that my dad and brother were missing. I remember pulling into our driveway after the party, and hearing a loud argument. I guess my dad and brother had gotten into it that day. It was so bad that my mom ran inside to get our things, and we stayed at a Motel 6 for a few nights. It wasn’t the first or last time we would have to stay somewhere else because my brother was out of control.

On nights that we did stay home through the arguments, I would hole myself and my brother up in my room, and we would watch TV loudly. Some nights the police were called by neighbors, other nights by my parents. My brother ran away a few times, and eventually he didn’t come home. I know that he eventually landed himself in jail. The only reason we found out he was there, was because he decided to write to my parents. Unfortunately they were not happy letters. They were often filled with violence and threats, and denial of any familial ties. It was a big rift in my family, and to this day we have nothing to do with him. I do know that he is alive and well, but I haven’t gone down the road to reunion.

My memories aren’t exactly happy.

I had a hard time understanding why my parents dealt with my brother the way they did. Couldn’t they see that he just didn’t get it? I didn’t like arguing as a kid and I still don’t as an adult. It makes me feel sick to my stomach and like the world is falling out from underneath me. After seeing my family argue so well when I was younger, I avoided confrontation as a teen, and it didn’t do me much good. Bullies are still bullies, even when you walk away. And yes, they will hit you from behind.

© I Am Not Defined, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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12 Responses to “Runaway”

  1. loniduek January 25, 2012 at 7:03 pm #

    choose smart, and dont get stuck in the past
    it was hard, it still is but you can do better and be a role model for others
    your articles inspire
    I had a tough one too but I’m choosing on a daily basis my own way
    which is keep on being humble,smile and enjoy life
    thanks for sharing

  2. Faith Based January 31, 2012 at 11:43 pm #

    Love this!!

  3. readytochangenow February 1, 2012 at 5:05 am #

    Thank you for sharing so much – I have found that my trauma in my past has prepared me for my now – it has given me strength I didn’t know I had…best of luck to you.

  4. Teresa Cleveland Wendel February 1, 2012 at 8:18 pm #

    This is the third of your essays that I have read. I can see that you are writing through the pain, letting the knife go through. I’ve done that too, and it’s helped me sort out a lot of issues. I love your endings–so insightful…especially this:
    Bullies are still bullies, even when you walk away. And yes, they will hit you from behind.

  5. Dru February 3, 2012 at 1:27 am #

    Firstly, you deserve the world’s biggest hug for everything that you endured.

    As what people always say, take the negative and turn it into something positive. It’s good that you’re into writing ’cause you inspire people to hold on no matter how difficult things are.


  6. nanaamaakpoblu February 11, 2012 at 5:13 pm #

    Your inner strength keeps you telling your story
    Always a pleasure reading

  7. annstanleywriting February 12, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

    Thanks for the powerful writing. There was a lot of shouting in my family, too, though little physical violence. I tended to hide from all of the conflict. It’s been a life long habit that ruined a number of my relationships. I hope that I am getting past this and learning to talk without arguing and also to see that I fundamentally don’t trust other people.

  8. scrunchylips February 15, 2012 at 11:49 pm #

    youre a really good writer! Don’t stop.

    I experienced (and still experience at times) a lot of what you say about your home life.

    Some of what you said framed well my own thoughts.

    wow. We are not alone!
    I’m so sorry for you friend!
    (can I say friend?)
    (having gone through childhood like this too I feel somehow close – though God knows we are strangers!)

    Keep writing! It helps me too :)

  9. Barefoot Baroness February 16, 2012 at 1:40 am #

    Your honesty with your readers is engaging. Your honesty with yourself, your willingness to make the journey to a better place is incredibly brave.
    I know how hard a project like a life story is. Painful and beautiful at the same time=bittersweet emotions that take some time to sort out. Wishing you all the time you need.

  10. romiantiwaras February 19, 2012 at 10:23 pm #

    Your story inspires many teens with same problem. Please kindly share other stories! :)
    Hope the best for you and your family

  11. jeffssong February 22, 2012 at 5:36 pm #

    It’s interesting; like so many survivors, I avoid arguments with an almost pathological obsession (to the point of letting people stomp all over my own boundaries – another survivor ‘weakness’).

    Now I’ll debate a thing to the very end – but yelling and screaming? Not for me. Oh yes – at things, and sometimes the dogs; but people? Nope; can’t do it. And it sets me on edge; like you said: gives me nausea, upsetting – I have to escape it. Can not stand it. Especially among family members (with strangers I’m more okay – yeah, I know it’s weird. I guess it goes with the turf and territory.

    “Child abuse. The ‘gift’ that just keeps on giving.” For a lifetime it seems. (sighing). But good to see you are handling it quite well. :)

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