Steps to heal your most debilitating core wounds
“I am a burden and a mistake.”
“All love that is offered to me is fragile and a lie.”
“Everyone I love secretly hates me and wants me to kill myself.”
These are the beliefs that dominated me for the majority of my life.
I am the youngest of three children in my family.
From the ages of 0-4, my older sister was like a second mom to me.
She tied my shoes for me. She carried me around. She was endlessly sweet, patient, and loving with me.
Then some time around turning 5, my older brother found me to be increasingly annoying, and he turned on me. Not wanting to be on the wrong side of this power dynamic, my sister joined him in bullying me. This carried on for the next eight or so years.
I remember countless nights of self-loathing. I remember feeling unwanted and unsafe in my family.
I remember having suicidal thoughts as early as eight years old.
Although I didn’t have the words to understand what it was at the time, I was intermittently depressed from the ages of 8-15.
After enough years of self-hatred and repressed emotions, I tried to take my own life when I was 15.
I sat down with a bottle of painkillers and a can of orange soda and I consumed them all.
Fast forward 24 hours and I was on suicide watch in a children’s hospital.
No belts. No shoelaces. No metal cutlery. Just me, two other suicidal teens, and a sterile jail cell of a bedroom.
My family came to visit me during visiting hours, and they all looked like shit. Their eyes were bloodshot. They looked exhausted. They looked like I felt.
And yet I remember the pain in their eyes confusing me deeply.
“Why are you all sad?
I thought I was doing you a favour,” I thought to myself.
The pain on the faces of my family was the initial sliver of doubt that had me question whether I wasn’t actually a burden to the world.
While the seed of doubt had been planted in my mind, I wasn’t ready to face into the depth of my repressed pain.
The unconscious programming that I had held on to (telling me that everyone I loved was just waiting to turn on me with cruelty and without warning) led me to study interpersonal relationships like a man possessed.
I read everything I could get my hands on that might give me the silver bullet solution to making people NOT hate me. I constructed a mask, and then (from the ages of 22-25) taught others how to live with the same mask that I had constructed.
I became a professional dating coach and helped people get into (largely surface level) relationships.
While helping people get traction in their lives and stepping into some form of teaching appealed to me, I could increasingly tell that something felt misaligned for me in the version of what I was doing.
At 25, I began to tire of the social mask that I had constructed, and wanted to go deeper into my process.I started dating women who could more fully see me (as I finally began to allow myself to be more fully seen by others).
I started working with coaches and therapists who had more embodied wisdom, and similar childhood trauma to me.In short, I started to reach out and ask for help for the first time ever. I truly surrendered.
Over the past year and a half I leaned harder into my self-development process than I ever have.
Largely catalyzed by a series of painful events (a significant breakup, a close friend passing away, and reaching a new level of success in my business and feeling deeply unfulfilled by it).
I started working with a transpersonal therapist, joined a weekly men’s group, and began doing more physically embodied therapeutic exercises that helped me get out of my head and into my emotional body.
Without hyperbole, this past year and a half has been the most challenging and healing period of time in my entire life, by a landslide.
Of all of the things that I have done, these are the three biggest things that I did to help heal my repressed pain and trauma.
It is my hope that you will be able to take something out of these steps to use in your own process.
1. Fully face, and accept, the truth of your situation
You can’t fully let go of something until you have first taken it into your hand and grasped it.If you don’t allow yourself to fully acknowledge the truth of whatever you have lived through, it will continue to have power over you.
There’s a big difference between saying
“I was bullied when I was young, but I was probably just being a sensitive little kid,” and, “I was bullied relentlessly for years and had suicidal thoughts for years because of it.”
There’s a big difference between saying
“I was raped when I was a teenager but I was probably asking for it because I was drunk and being flirtatious,” and, “I was raped when I was a teenager.