The World’s Most Underestimated Man Met his Match: A Believer
Having someone who believes in you is enough to get you past the demons of your past.
We all have childhood demons. They whisper in our ear, convincing us that we have nothing to offer the world. It is hard to shut it out. But, having someone who believes in you is enough to get you past the demons of your past.
Years ago, I cared for a man in his 30s. He was deep into alcoholism. The bottles troubled him so profoundly that when empty, he turned to hand sanitizer, mouthwash, and cough syrup.
He says he drinks due to stress and the overwhelming feeling of being inadequate. He began telling the tale of his upbringing.
The seeds of his anxiety were sown in his childhood. His father was married to a woman who wasn’t his mother. His father was negligent, and his stepmother was abusive.
They treated him more like a farmhand than a son. He was required to work on the family farm and was never allowed to play outside. His childhood was stolen.
He never said HOW she abused him but said he would NEVER forgive her for the things she did. By the traumatized emptiness in his eyes and his grave tone, I concluded that his stepmother molested him. I suspected that his father knew and did nothing.
Not long before he laid in my hospital bed, she attempted to make amends, but he was wholly unwilling.
The man looked me in the eye without blinking and said no one has ever told me I could be anything. I've never been happy. Everything good is always taken away from me.
He felt inadequate, abused, neglected, and that he could never do right.
The depression, anxiety, and fear crushed him, and he was desperate for a reason to live. His daughter, stepdaughter, and wife weren’t enough. When you've lived a life like his, the positives don’t shine through the clouds.
I could see that he still carried with him the demons from his childhood. They gnaw at him, making it hard to push forward through daily life as an adult. And he knew it. He had no social skills and felt lost in the world.
As a child, he did his best to understand his trauma. Unfortunately, his rudimentary interpretation of his home life led him to blame himself.
His inadequacy was not his fault.
I told that man without wavering, “It wasn’t your fault. You were just an innocent kid. YOu didn’t have any control over how your parents mistreated you.
“You were a kid who suffered from inadequate parenting, neglect, and abuse. Your father and stepmother were coping with their demons. And they stole your childhood.
“Try to move forward with self-forgiveness. It wasn't your fault. You are right that you probably don't have the skills right now to walk courageously into this world and make what you want of it. But that's not your fault. You've been told all your life that you were a failure, that you were a mess up. Maybe you have been, but it's not your fault.”
None of us can control what the world gives us. We hope, plan, and pray for things the world is not guaranteed to deliver.
We can only control how we live our lives. So, determine your values based on principle and live with purpose. All you need is courage, and the commitment to getting better.
If no one has ever told you this, hear it from me. Whatever baggage you carry from childhood isn’t your fault. You were a child. You have the power within you to achieve anything you want in life. You deserve to be happy and prosperous, despite what you’ve been told.
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Until Next Time My People.