Parental Injunctions: my parents didn’t want me to exist?

“They’re messages subconsciously transmitted to us by our parents at an early age. They tend to inform the scripts we develop to navigate our way through life – almost like conditions to get your needs met.” 
My therapist explained that the parents don’t intend (or even realise) that these messages are conveyed, and there is an element of us bringing our own interpretation to their words and behaviours in order to arrive at these injunctions. They can include things like ‘do not be seen’, ‘do not feel’, ‘do not be a child’, ‘do not grow up’, ‘do not succeed’, ‘do not be important’. 

Mine? Mine is probably the worst of the lot –

DON’T EXIST. 

That’s a pretty upsetting thought, to be honest. But I was unplanned, caused untold upheaval, financial difficulty, necessitated moving house, and then didn’t really get to bond with my caregivers as both had to go back to work very soon after I was born due to aforementioned financial situation. My mum struggled with her own mental health issues before I came along, and these worsened after, so… I guess it makes sense.

I haven’t posted for a while because I’ve kind of struggled with this. I initially denied it, then started to realise that it kinda fits, realised that a lot of my experiences support it, realised that a lot of my dysfunctional behaviours are probably caused by it. I told my therapist about some of the behaviours I’d noticed in myself that seemed to tie in with the theory. It seems pretty bleak.

I have a deep-seated belief that I shouldn’t exist. That I don’t deserve to. So I often try to hide myself away and be as inconspicuous as possible, as this is where I feel safe. I blame myself for my own suffering because I feel like everything is my fault for continuing to exist.

I took on a very challenging job that flies in the face of this, and I’ve pushed myself to perform as a musician as well. My counsellor noted that these are pretty huge feats for someone with this injunction, and I told her that I didn’t think anything smaller would even make a dent in it. We kind of agreed that the scale of the injunction is pretty daunting, but at the same time there is obviously a part of me that is fighting it very hard and throws me into situations where I’m forced to exist and to make my existence felt by other people. Perhaps I need to find a way to capitalise on that part.

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