How to put a proper name tag on abused survivor

How to put a proper name tag on Abused Survivor?

Wise men do not wear name tags.  

The more people talk about their own skills, the more desperate they are.  

– NisiOisiN

Whenever I read books / articles written by abused survivors, those uniqueness always confused me to think about my own situation.  Well, how can I label myself? Or is it only my problems? How about other abused survivors?

Many writers are so specific about their personal experience / trauma, no offence but we can put a name tag for each individual easily, e.g. sexual / physical abused, domestic violence, child / emotional abused survivors etc.

But according to my complicated background, I always have difficulties to put a proper name-tag about my abuse / story. Seems like I’m stuck in the crossroads – somehow associated with different category.  This make me struggle from time to time during healing because I’m not dealing with one trauma, and don’t know how to relate with other survivors more appropriately.  How should I introduce myself to others?

Complication of dysfunctional family system

Guess it’s commonly happened in dysfunctional families, there must have toxic / abusive parents who ruin and harass healthy / functional system at first place.

Once the system is distorted, these toxic parents can do whatever they want according to their own desires / selfish purposes. Thus it always make situation more complicated / worse since many other abuse behaviors will be carried out in such toxic environment.   This makes abused survivors growing up in dysfunctional family have more challenges / emotional baggage to move on.

You may need a whole life to heal one trauma, but now you’ve got 2, 3, or even 5….it’s hard to image how long it’ll take to reach the final destination.  It’s like a magician / crown who throwing different balls in two hands at the same time.

More name-tags of self-destructive behaviors

Not only name-tags that originated from initial abuses, but now abused survivors feel extremely shame, guilty, betrayed and hurt.  Very often, abused victims will establish many self-destructive behaviors as coping mechanism.

There’s no doubt these self-harm attitudes are bad to soul, spirits or emotions, but since they don’t have role models to guide them how to deal with problems properly, this will become the only tactic they can lean on, e.g. smoking, alcohol, drugs, addiction, eating disorder etc. These are the only gateway we can numb ourselves, detach from drama or distress at any particular time.

I knew how it felt as I used to binge eating whenever emotions felt overwhelmed. I ate all my emotions down to throat. Eventually, like other survivors, I owned more name-tags, e.g. “Fatty”, “Glutton”; or “Cold” because of my trust issue.  Many other abused survivors who are suffering from PTSD / depression after abuse may be labelled as “Lazy”, “Slothful”.

Imagine abused survivors may need to bring a bag carrying all the name-tags in case someone asking about “who are you?”.

Shall I introduce myself as a emotional abused survivor? but what about those bad consequences / effects after years of verbally abused and childhood neglected?  Which label is more appropriate for me to address myself, so outsiders will understand me more?

Closing thoughts

I assume nobody want to be labelled or stereotyped.  But this is the Must-Have life-long challenge for many abused survivors, wearing different hats and change according to different situation.

Outsiders may think ….well… as long as they manage to heal their trauma after narcissistic abuse, (for example), they will be fine and live a happy life thereafter.  But the truth is many abused survivors may need to tackle other emotional / physical / psychological trauma simultaneously that come with other abuses they were experienced during a period of abused years.

They may also have difficulties to have mutual healthy relationships with others, since it’s extremely difficult to address themselves properly.  When we don’t know how to position ourselves, we’ll have problems to be truly authentic or even aware our wishes / expectations.

I still believe there’s hope for healing, but just need more time, patience, strength and support.

Do you have similar difficulties as like as me?


2 thoughts on “How to put a proper name tag on Abused Survivor?”

  1. It’s hard to heal if we have never known “normal.” What’s normal? How do we learn that, especially when we are usually drawn to people who are also abusers like our family. They “feel somehow as if we have known them all our lives,” because we have. Unless by some fairy tale miracle we are adopted by a healthy family (I prayed for this daily as a child), I think the best we can do is to learn to accept ourselves with compassion, be kind to ourselves and others, work on practicing compassion always, and learn what healthy boundaries are.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura, totally agree with you. better solution for us, survivors are learning to unlearn all the wrong behaviors / thoughts that we gained from abusive family. it do need lots of energy and time to heal as the journey is not easy and there always bumps on the path. but it worth it.


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