Living with rejection and gaslighting
Everyone has, at some point or another, experienced rejection to varying degrees. It’s a part of life. Even though it’s a part of our existence as a human to experience here on Earth, that doesn’t mean that it hurts any less.
As someone who has borderline personality disorder, rejection stings immensely more than the average person. It’s something we will go out of our way to avoid facing. Rejection appears to be the theme of my life. Starting early on with my parents. My mother abandoned us all when I was 4 and my father was emotionally unavailable.
Rejection has been one of the most painful feelings to experience in this lifetime for me. I was too young, back then, to work that kind of stuff out even though I was keenly aware of what seemed loving or not loving. It’s as if I was born already linked to my heart and could easily recognize what was or wasn’t healthy for me. I didn’t have security with my caretakers so developing resilience or a strong sense of self was not an option until now.
Then I, unbeknownst to me, buried it all, most likely as form of survival, and was not able to “see” it nor the effects it had on me until I started on this self healing journey. The self-love issues, the self-worth issues, the lack of trust in myself, not loving or liking myself.
Rejection seems to play out repeatedly in my life. So much so, that I learned to reject myself.
I tend to reject my inner strength. I reject love. I reject my abilities. I reject compliments. I reject feeling painful feelings. I reject praise. I reject situations that make me uncomfortable (instead of learning from them). I reject people who wish to get close to me which affects creating depth and new friendships. I reject myself in small ways, such as not giving myself what I need in the moment, or for not allowing myself to cry when I need to cry or scream when I need to scream. I was so afraid of even creating this blog and sharing my emotional healing journey because of my fear of rejection.
And here I am faced with rejection yet again in my life.
A few months after the death of my stepmother, my father started dating again. That triggered rejection in me. I was hoping for the chance to develop a heart connection between us now that she wasn’t here to put a wedge between us any longer. Something we’ve never had before. I always felt that he chose women over me and with her death, maybe that would finally change. What was I thinking? It did, though, help me to create awareness around some inner child issues I was unaware of (I talk about that in my post ‘Working through the inner child’) so I suppose some good came out of it.
I also recently noticed that one of my siblings blocked me on Facebook. I know that seems trivial but even the smallest forms of rejection are difficult for BPD sufferers. It still hurts. She just quit talking to me one day. It’s obvious there is an issue. I just don’t know what it is. She won’t even look at me at family events. She won’t invite me to anything but everyone else is invited. She won’t even tell me when there is an emergency situation with my father. I have no idea what I did wrong and she refuses to talk to me about it. It’s as if I don’t even exist. Ouch.
What makes all of this that much more painful is the gaslighting that comes along with it. Maybe that’s common, or that’s just my experience of it but it happens all the time. I was never aware that it was gaslighting until recently. The pretending they don’t see any of this going on. The sweeping under the rug. I’m expected to just accept that this is the way things are. I’m expected to be okay with it. I’m not “allowed” to feel anything about this behavior. No one shines light onto it. No one stands up for me. No one talks about it except for me. It feels very disrespectful and not something you do to the people you love. But because it’s not directly happening to them why should they care? Right?
That seems to be a universal issue with a lot of things. If it doesn’t pertain to you personally, who cares. We see that with caring for the Earth. So much damage is being done to our planet and those that live on it but if it’s not directly affecting anyone it’s denied, or excuses are made. Maybe this is a collective issue we have to work through energetically and karmically.
This is my reality though. Whether anyone likes it or not. This is how it’s always been for me. This is the source of a lot of my anger. I can spot gaslighting from a mile away because I’ve lived with it for so long.
This is what I have to face at family events. It fucking hurts to be at an event and have someone you care about blatantly pretend that you do not exist, and then everyone pretending that it’s not happening. Not existing must be the #1 worse pain in the world.
The same pain my father caused from not acknowledging my pain as a child or even doing something to stop it from happening to me. The same pain my mother caused by leaving me and not coming back for a very long time as a young child. The same pain my stepmother caused by forcing me to only exist in my room, only allowed out for basic survival needs plus school. God forbid I existed. God forbid I speak up about it.
I did speak up though, many times, to be told I was making up stories, I was just emotional, I wasn’t getting my way, I was lying and because these people I was referring to were beloved by others (and it wasn’t seen firsthand or directly affecting them), how could it be true? It was made to be as if my reality were not true. I was denied validation. I was denied a sense of safety. I am still denied my truth to this day. Still not believed.
I now realize how gaslighting has been a part of my life this entire time. How many times I’ve screamed at the top of my lungs at how people were treating me, and I was told that it’s not true, that was not what was really happening, you’re lying. For them to make up excuses for bad behaviors. Reasons for why it was okay that this was happening and why I had to just deal with it. The skeletons locked up in a closet, still happening today. Lots of secrets. I had to make sure I didn’t upset these people, god forbid someone feels bad about their own behaviors, right? And it’s happening all over again.
Gaslighting is abuse. Point blank. If someone says you hurt them, you don’t get to decide that you didn’t.
I’m shaking as I write these words. Through this blog, my voice is not silenced.
It’s time for me to give to myself. To give me validation. To give me hope. To give me the choice to not allow this in my life. To give myself the love I always needed. To build up my own worth. To stop rejecting and gaslighting myself. To believe in myself. It’s obvious nobody changes unless they want to. I want to change how this keeps occurring for me so in order to, for my own emotional and mental state, I must walk away from it.
The way things were handled long ago, was wrong. The things that were once allowed, were wrong. The things that are currently happening, are wrong. The way everyone turns a blind eye to it is wrong.
I have a voice now. Here. I will make sure of it. No one will ever keep me quiet again. I will exist!
I am the lightworker placed into my family line to break the generational trauma. I will make sure everyone who ever feels silenced, who feels like they are not seen, not heard, not believed, those that feel as if they do not exist, are seen.
I see you. I will sit with you. I will believe you. I will not reject you. I will not shame you. I will not deny your reality.
I have found my inner magic, my inner power through these situations. I have clawed my way out of the coffin they put me in to scream my truth. I wasn’t heard before, but I will be heard now.
I do exist.