HEALING THROUGH CONVERSATIONS - E002
Healing through conversations have been used by our ancestors for millennia now, and it's time we go back to this ideology. Throughout the years we've been growing more and more distanced from each other and ourselves. Our egos are becoming stronger, and our pride is in the way. This episode is a reminder to everyone that by choosing growth and healing through conversations will change the world.
> Why conversations are integral to the healing process of not only an individual healing plan, but for our world to heal from the pain (03:31)
> The ins and outs of what this podcast is setting out to do
> Insight into the host's life and what she brings to the table
E002: Healing Through Conversations
Amy: Welcome back to the very first solo episode of What We're Not Talking About with your host, me, Amy D. I am so excited to be here with you. I want to build and create a world in which mental health is a priority within each and every human being, including you. The conversations we are about to share with you will be some that you're probably not used to hearing. Today we will be talking about healing through conversations.
And, if you are, it may very well be a sign that you need to listen closer. I hope that these conversations will help you learn, love, and transform into the version of yourself that you've been yearning to be your entire life. My second hope is that you will find healing through conversations. I hope this doesn't feel like a pipe dream, but if it does, you're in the right place.
I used to be exactly like you. You see, I didn't trust or believe in the universe or other people, let alone myself. I refused to see the good in the world. I felt jaded by the life I had been dealt. [00:56:00] Like many others, I suffered in the prison of my mind for a very long time. I grew up in the nineties, outside Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Although we have free healthcare, mental health was not an area of medicine that they focused on here.
Honestly, I would be surprised if they even believed it back then. As a child, I stayed sick constantly, both physically and mentally. I traversed in and out of doctor's offices, specialist offices, and hospitals. Not once was I considered as being someone that could potentially need psychiatric help.
I felt like I was broken.
[00:01:33] Something inside me felt like it wanted to slowly destroy the good in me. Emotions overwhelmed me. I broke out in fits of uncontrollable anger. I felt like I lost all of me by the age of 17.
Fast forward to 2011. I experienced daily anxiety and depression (although I didn't know it at the time). I also dealt with a binge eating disorder, excoriation disorder, zero self-confidence, a narcissistic father, and a toxic family life.
In other words, I was a giant fucking mess that ended up as a drug addict, co-dependent, sex worker, and overall sad, sad shell of a woman. Then one fateful night when I was 21, I met with someone who would soon be one of my last clients. I can recall to this day, the most vivid details of this evening. What I remember most were the [00:02:28] smells, the sounds, the hazy purple hue of the room.
I even remember how his voice sounded as he undressed: “This isn't who you are. This isn't who you are meant to be. You are so much more than this.”
Those words cut into me like a rusty knife. They hurt because they represented exactly how I felt. In fact, most of the things I did and experienced were done with the level of awareness I chose to ignore. I knew I really didn't want to abuse meth, ecstasy, and cocaine, but damn, did they make me feel better in the moment. For a very long time, I struggled with this.
This thought repurposed my life.
If I knew what was right, and knew that I was [00:03:14] not meant to do what I did, then why did I continue to do all these self-harming things? Little did I know that started my healing through conversations with myself.
This thought took over my life, asking over and over again, “Why did this happen?” Uncovering layer by layer, the hundreds of elements that made up each and every belief and action I held and experienced. I thought about this so much. I made it into my passion, my purpose, and this podcast.
Why am I telling you this?
Nothing other than for you to understand that not only am I talking about this and sharing with you with scientists, psychologists, doctors, and other contributors have discovered, I have also lived many of these experiences. I have been in a similar place as you.
One that feels cold, dark, damp, and one like you would prefer to leave. In moments I thought I wanted to die. I have had days where I thought my anxiety was going to cause a heart attack and kill me. I experienced weeks where I refuse to get out of bed.
But I've also had other better days, ones where I processed the emotions of the past, ones where I sit with the [00:04:25] experiences I tried to forget through drugs, alcohol, unprotected sex, or constant scrolling. I have had days where I feel emotions leave my body for good. And the one theme of each and everyone of the good and bad days is this: conversation. I experienced healing through conversations.
It needed to change.
I used to have the hardest time communicating; a side effect of narcissistic abuse. People seemed like they were judging every word I was saying and making fun of me behind my back, further proving to myself that I was, in fact, exactly what “they” thought. Not good enough.
Then just like [00:05:04] most magic in today's world, I inherently knew that this needed to change. I heard something that the voices inside my head screamed, “I need to work on this!” It was important. So, I listened. I listened to the importance of healing through conversations. This is what I have learned since.
As children, we need a variety of support, care, and love from our family to ensure our healthy, physical, emotional, and mental development. They include the obvious, such as clean drinking water, a safe and secure home life, and appropriate guidance and discipline. However, there are three things that contribute to the overall mental health of a child that we don't talk about. This is what they are. One, being listened to. Two, being understood. And three, experiencing unconditional love from family.
This is where we, as a human race can go [00:05:58] terribly wrong.
It's normal to grow up in a two person working household that is struggling to meet the bills and demands of two children. Dad is constantly tired and disconnected and mom and/or dad is barely holding it together. The insurmountable stress ends up becoming a regular theme of the evening.
A story to illustrate.
Sophie, the oldest, has been feeling the stress of her parents. Attempting to lighten the mood, she tries desperately to have a conversation with them to share all the new things she's been learning about at school. See, she's really into space and aliens, and they finally started to cover it in science class.
[00:06:42] Mum is quiet and exhausted from work, but makes her best effort to feign interest and agrees that's neat. Dad, on the other hand, has zoned out completely and appears to have become hard of hearing. This becomes the normal dinner table habit until it turns into something much bigger.
Supper time now features an angry father. This father keeps insisting that Sophie eat her dinner quietly and go upstairs to finish her homework immediately. Mom tryies to avoid the wrath of dad's anger. To protect her daughter, she quickly agrees with dad and rushes Sophie upstairs to safety.
[00:7:22] This story's purpose illustrates what goes on inside the child's mind.
Unbeknown to Sophie, every time her parents choose to not listen, she builds a belief that their love for her contains conditions. That they will only love her when she speaks of something that they too wish she speaks about.
Additionally, the situation affirms that she isn't understood and further ingrains the belief that she's weird. See, I forgot to mention to you that she is being made fun of at school because of her interest in outer space. Her parents don't know either because they are never able to listen to what she's saying. She can’t find healing through conversations with her parents.
The importance of re-parenting ourselves.
[00:08:04] What happens next? The parents unknowingly affirm every negative belief in the child's head. How? Simply by not listening, not understanding, and not demonstrating unconditional love. And if you as a child are shown evidence of this by your parents, wouldn't you most likely believe them? All subconsciously, of course.
Now think of what type of adult Sophie turns into. One that doesn't trust herself, one that believes she must act a certain way in order to receive love, and one that doesn't feel understood, a scary feeling in a world that is becoming more and more divided by the day.
Coupled with the fact that by 20, she is most likely dealing with the impact of her toxic family and maybe even exhibiting a visible mental illness or two
[00:9:02] Most of you listening are adults. You may very well be thinking, “I'm not a child anymore, so what does this have to do with me?” As adults, our true purpose is to heal and essentially reparent ourselves. This means allowing ourselves to experience, as adults, what we missed out in childhood: healing through conversations.
Although What We're Not Talking About may not feature conversations that you are directly having, they are real, vulnerable, and honest conversations that many individuals you will see in yourself. These conversations are meant to open your eyes [00:9:40] and bring the unconscious darkness that you feel in your soul, if you want to admit it or not, to the conscious, the light, in order to move forward in a way that feels freeing and not bound to a life that was never meant for you.
Healing Through Conversations
Through these conversations, you will learn to love yourself and each other unconditionally. Without doubt in your minds and fear in your heart, I'm confident that these conversations will change you if you allow it, because they've changed me.