Christmas and the holidays are upon us again. A time of good cheer and joy?
Many find it a time of pain and disenfranchisement. This article explores what is happening and how to manage the Holiday period.
This time of year can be particularly stressful for people. Not everyone comes from backgrounds where there was no domestic violence or aggression in the family. Many have experienced it before. The statistics are high for those who have experienced domestic violence to be in a relationship with another partner, repeating their earlier experience. If we grow up in a divisive environment and one of disharmony, being in the presence of those who do experience happiness and joy can feel very uncomfortable and unfamiliar. The awkward and the familiar can seem wrong. But this is where you need to challenge this. To challenge the desire for the past pain. To start a new path, it is necessary to challenge it.
So what do you need to do? Make sure if you are not seeing a therapist that, you start to see one. I suggest that you fake it till you make it. Even if you feel like hiding away. Or if you usually get drunk, say awful things, and then don’t remember what you said. Work on being nice. Being decent with others. If you disrespect others, then regret and guilt will turn around, and no change will ever happen. Shame and guilt have an annoying habit of not permitting adaptation to occur. Drink far less or not at all. If you don’t drink. Note if you disassociate and zone out to cope with the stress. Then work to look at what is happening around you. What people say and do. There are some decent people and, of course, some very unhelpful people too. It is essential to be present to experience what is real or not.
Therefore I ask you to go out. Be there with others. Take some time out if you need it. If your Past has been abusive, you will need to work more on changing it. But it is possible. You are not alone. One step at a time, one day at a time, one week at a time, one month at a time and one year at a time.
I wish you a truly and really authentic Happy Holiday.