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Showing posts from February 28, 2010

Embracing Who I Am

I have shared my heart's passion for starting a support/recovery group especially for Adult Children of Hoarders--a place where as adults we can face head-on the traumas of our parent's (s') hoarding, mental illness and then grieve the childhood we lost, reparent ourselves with love, grace, and encouragement, and then learn new healthy habits.

Initially, I found the Adult Children of Alcoholics WSO and literature. Although the group was formed by the adult children who were raised in the homes of alcoholics, almost all of the literature rang true with the dysfunction of my chilhood. The "Laundry List" absolutely fit me, and I have seen the qualities listed within at some point or another in my life.

But I feared that the faith component of their literature (a slightly modified version of the 12 steps of AA) would exclude those who were agnostic or atheist. This really troubled me. I wanted to include everyone. I know all too well the feeling of not being included …

Living What I've Learned

"Children Learn What They Live"
--a poem by Dorothy Law Nolte

If a child lives with criticism,
he learns to condemn.

If a child lives with hostility,
he learns to fight.

If a child lives with fear,
he learns to be apprehensive.

If a child lives with pity,
he learns to feel sorry for himself.

If a child lives with ridicule,
he learns to be shy.

If a child lives with jealousy,
he learns what envy is.

If a child lives with shame,
he learns to feel guilty.

If a child lives with encouragement,
he learns to be confident.

If a child lives with tolerance,
he learns to be patient.

If a child lives with praise,
he learns to be appreciative.

If a child lives with acceptance,
he learns to love.

If a child lives with approval,
he learns to like himself.

If a child lives with recognition,
he learns that it is good to have a goal.

If a child lives with sharing,
he learns about generosity.

If a child lives with honesty and fairness,
he learns what truth and justice are.

If a child lives with security,
he lea…

A Weekend's Revelation

As I've been working through the path to recovery and healing, I've spent a good deal of time looking backwards to see and name what actually happened to me as a child, to feel the pain, shame, embarassment, and insignificance those events brought to me, to identify that what I've become was really the only path I had available as a child, and then to learn to love and nurture me with God's help in the ways my parents couldn't or didn't.

Part of doing this has been reading posts shared by other Children of Hoarders on the forum at yahoo!groups. Many of the experiences I've been reading about involve a lifetime of trying to get the hoarding parent to change. There have been threatened interventions. There have been surprise attack cleanouts.

And I realized that these were somewhat foreign to me.

I was deeply embarassed by what my childhood home was. I allowed very few people to come to my home. I was part of clean-ups due to threatened eviction and to sell th…