growing up in a house of violence, abuse, and neglect, i learned early to keep secrets. incest is the secretest secret of all. i don’t like talking about it. i don’t like thinking about it. i isolate most of my talking and thinking about those secrets to an hour each week in therapy. secrets beget more secrets. lies create the need for more lies. denial breeds more denial. secrets, lies, and denial will make you believe that you are crazy.
surprisingly, i’m not crazy. according to statistics, my situation slated me to be mentally ill, a drug addict, or dead. until recently, i worried that i was crazy, because some of my thoughts, feelings, and behaviors didn’t make sense to me, even within the context of post-traumatic stress disorder. now that i understand and have traced how and why i developed these belief, thought, feeling, and behavior patterns, i can more easily identify who, what, how, and why crazy is where crazy lives.
i have compassion for crazy. since i grew up with crazy, i kept inviting crazy into my life because crazy felt familiar and i hoped to help crazy transform craziness. i wanted to help. i got close and loved hard. i got hurt over and over again because what crazy calls love is more craziness and nothing at all like love.
a wise friend told me fifteen years ago that if you’re wondering whether you’re crazy, then you probably aren’t. crazy people don’t usually recognize when or what or who is crazy. and, from my experience, crazy people become angry and mean or victim-y and blame-y when you try to discuss the craziness they deny.
i hope you’re not crazy. and if you’re crazy, i hope you receive the help you need from people trained and equipped to help. if you’re crazy, i intend to compassionately keep my distance from you.
p.s. daily drinking to drunkenness or smoking weed every night “to help you sleep” or eating pint after pint of ice cream or spending hours and hours shopping online for stuff you don’t need are cues that maybe everything ain’t quite alright. i’m not suggesting that you’re crazy, i’m asking you to please find out what feeling you’re afraid to feel, what feeling you will do anything in the world to avoid feeling. explore the what’s and why’s of your behavior and make a conscious (rather than habitual) choice about how you want to live each day. can you consider living another way…or feeling what you’re afraid to feel?