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Ragdoll Redeemed: Growing up in the Shadow of Marilyn Monroe Chapter 1 continued

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Marilyn’s mother was taken once again to a psychiatric hospital the day they had to pry a knife from her hands. I was around six or seven the night my mother attacked my stepfather with a butcher knife during a drunken argument.  To this day, I can instantly be jerked back to that night by the memory  of that  helpless  reality.  I tremble  as the  remembrance of my mother’s insanity threatens  to wash over me and leaves me equally unstable. I know by my own experience  that  a child who is exposed to that degree of uncontrolled adult rage can carry the scars for life and spend years learning how to cope with other people’s anger when it becomes even the slightest bit threatening. We naïvely grow up with no sense of internal stability in the face of other people’s ire, and become easy hostages to those who would manipulate and even enslave us by our instant fear reaction.

There are many stories of Marilyn having been abused as a child by various  people.  Marilyn  once  told  her  foster  mother  about  a man touching  her, only to be disbelieved, and even slapped, for telling such a supposed lie. Marilyn later said that her stuttering began on that day. I do not recall when my stuttering began, but I was quite young.


I know that when a child is molested and has to keep that violation a secret—or worse still, is punished for telling—a powerful rage begins to  build  inside  that  child.  Some  children,  even at an early age, can understand when an injustice is perpetrated on them, and they release the rage on themselves with actions like nail biting, or hair pulling, or even wishing to die. Other  children act it out externally, by being mean to other  children  or being disrespectful  to parents,  teachers, or prop erty. I did several of those things. I bit my nails until they bled, stuttered, prayed to die, and even started a fire. As widely reported, Marilyn struggled with pills, booze, relationships,  and whether or not she even wanted to live.

Protracted patterns  of erratic  responses  by caregivers reduce  the chances that  a child will learn  how to regulate  their  own emotions. Equally  devastating  to a developing  child is the  situation  of disconnected or disinterested caregivers. It is only through attuned  communication  that  a child  learns  necessary  emotional,  mental,  and  social coherence. It is in the being seen, heard, and attuned to that a child learns how to regulate  their own feeling state of emotions.  Being seen, mirrored, and met by a loving other allows the developing mind to regulate itself.

Protracted patterns  of erratic  responses  by caregivers reduce  the chances that  a child will learn  how to regulate  their  own emotions. Equally  devastating  to a developing  child is the  situation  of disconnected or disinterested caregivers. It is only through attuned  communication  that  a child  learns  necessary  emotional,  mental,  and  social coherence. It is in the being seen, heard, and attuned to that a child learns how to regulate  their own feeling state of emotions.  Being seen, mirrored, and met by a loving other allows the developing mind to regulate itself.  (P.g. 4-5) To be continued……….

 

Ragdoll Redeemed: Growing up in the Shadow of Marilyn Monroe

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Ragdoll Redeemed:Growing up in the Shadow of Marilyn Monroe (excerpts) Chapter 1 cont..
Ragdoll Redeemed:Growing up in the Shadow of Marilyn Monroe Chapter 1 cont