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My Life As A Child – Daily Prompt

The Daily Prompt asks: “Sure, you turned out pretty good, but is there anything you wish had been different about your childhood? If you have kids, is there anything you wish were different for them?”

There is so much I could say about my childhood but I don’t want this turning into a novel. I think the strangest thing about my childhood is that I don’t remember all that much about it. I do have some memories but most of them are from the time I hit ten or so. I’ve had psychiatrists tell me this may be due to trauma. It is a possibility. Most of my earliest memories are disturbing to me.


I guess if I could have wished one thing different about my childhood it would have been to have a safe, loving home rather than a dysfunctional nightmare. There was far too much insanity going on and it was not something I think any child should be exposed to, especially at such a young age. For that good environment to have been possible, my Dad would have needed to stay off of the coke and take anger management therapy or my Mom would have had to divorce him. Neither were in the cards for my family.

What I wish most for my kids is a home that does not feel threatening, unstable, or violent like the one I grew up in. I try to defuse arguments when I am around my kids. If I can’t, I make sure I don’t raise my voice or act aggressively. I hated the constant fighting at my childhood home. I remember the dread that washed over me when I’d be reduced to hiding with my baby sister, desperate to protect her from his current rampage.  I don’t want to put them in a position where they feel like I am a raging beast they have to protect themselves from. I don’t want them growing up thinking that is normal or subconsciously choosing partners that have serious anger issues.

It took a long time and a lot of soul searching to undo the damage I endured. I will do everything in my power not to visit that upon my own children but sometimes it’s really hard. I have a temper. There are times when I am enraged with the intensity of a thousand suns. I’ve had a set back here and there with losing my cool but never anything major so, I know can do this. The fear remains that I will somehow turn into my father. It may not be rational but it’s looming in the back of my mind, always and I don’t know how to let it go.


23 thoughts on “My Life As A Child – Daily Prompt

  1. Man, dads are something, aren’t they? The power they hold over our lives is amazing. I have my moments when I channel mine–some are good times, others not so much. I don’t have an affinity for drink like he did when he was my age but it seems that I am in a similar cycle of being distant from my son like he was from me. It’s for different reasons I think but it’s tough to deal with sometimes…

    • Parents sure are something. I can see many of my negative traits reflected back in them. It’s amazing how much they rub off on us. I’m glad to hear that his addictive personality didn’t rub off on you. Mine, unfortunately, did. I don’t do drugs but I do have a food addiction. I wasn’t able to admit that for a long time but, food makes me happy in a way few other things can. I can only guess that may be the way he felt about his drugs.

  2. I had the same sort of anxiety induced childhood. I blame the Vietnam War and the lack of services to help returning veterans cope with the stress of family life. Sounds as if you and I are on the same journey dealing with the same issues. Keep up the good work, I know it is not easy!

    • “I blame the Vietnam War and the lack of services to help returning veterans cope with the stress of family life. ” My dad was also a vet. I think it messed him up to a degree but I think most of the damage was done during his childhood. My grandfather was a brutal man and I don’t think any of his children were left unscathed by his cruelty.

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    • I know the post sounds like a huge pity party but really, it’s not that bad anymore. The worst of it has passed. Don’t waste your prayers on me, I’m already free of that place in time but thank you for caring 🙂

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  5. “Enraged with the intensity of a thousand suns” I’ve had that feeling, its scary!
    I applaud you..growing up at dysfunction junction is intense

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  9. I wanted to acknowledge your post, but liking it did not seem appropriate. Hence the comment.
    Your story made me wish you had a better childhood. And I despise parent-fights as well! Although my parents do fight only occasionally, those “occasions” had a really bad impact on me. I really hope that I do not fight before my children when I have kids in future.

    • It’s hard not to fight because, let’s face it, sometimes a significant other is going to work on your very last nerve but I have found coping mechanisms that help. Thank goodness. Thanks for writing! 🙂

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