Hero Child

a love letter to my anger
Getting to Know my Self-Hatred
Hero Child
Trap of Forgiveness
Facing a Wall of Silence
Instructions for Dehumanization
Outrage over a Handcuffed Girl
The Futility of Punishment
free from guilt


my body's comment

by Barbara Rogers

read here: a love letter to my anger

After I thought I had finished this love letter to my anger, I had the following experience. When I got up from my desk, content after several hours of working and having completed my “love letter to my anger,” I suddenly had a backache. The next day, I still could do my workout, but the pain continued to be there, so I wrote therapy. Being beaten, punished and persecuted by the (internalized) parents/nanny for speaking the truth came up, and it made complete sense to me. I slept well that night, but the next day, the pain changed and got worse. It now hurt the most when I was sitting or lying down and when, lying in bed, I tried to turn, move, or to get up. When I wrote therapy that day, the baby that I had been started to express herself. She was beaten by my mother when I was younger than 1 year old. My mother told me this information many years ago, long before I entered therapy.

The following night was horrible. I was lying in bed and could barely turn or get up anymore. Sometimes, when it seemed that I made a “wrong movement,” it felt as if an electric shock was spreading out over my lower back for several seconds. But I could not figure out which movements were "wrong," which movements I needed to avoid that caused this excruciating pain. It took me many minutes to be able to manage to turn around, to get up or to rise to get into a position to write.

During that night, I wrote therapy again. This time, it was a powerful communication with that tiny baby. As I wrote, it became clear, how she had to lie in her crib or little bed, was beaten and then waited for the next time the pain would hit her, without that she could figure out what caused that terrible pain, what “wrong” movements brought it about. She could not peacefully be with herself and rest – she awaited in terrified anticipation what would happen, without being able to move, to rise, to get up, to do anything or to figure out what was happening to her. It also became clear that during the times when my mother (or other nannies, I had 3 during my first year of life) were nice to this baby, she felt elated, exuberant and loved.
She was trained from the earliest beginning not only to be nice to cruel, merciless people but she also had to figure out what they wanted from her, and to fulfill it and give it to them – long before she could form words and had any language skills and a consciousness. When she felt “good,” = elated, she would do even more what her mother wanted because she was so grateful to be free from pain and from waiting for pain. In the last step of my written therapy I came to her to her little bad, took her into my arms, told her harrowing mother what I thought of her and carried this baby away, into my life and home to be withy me. As I did all this and talked with her, I cried deeply.

After I wrote, I could sleep again. When the pain was still there in the morning I wondered and asked it what it needed from me. It asked me to write about this baby for my “love letter to my anger” because her suffering is so important and really one of the deepest layers of anger that was unleashed against me in my childhood, anger that silenced me and turned me into an obedient, submissive servant and slave, and where my anger had no chance to ever come out and show itself in any way. This tiny body was totally busy trying to deal with this pain and awaiting more; completely busy trying to figure out which “wrong” movements caused it; and completely incapable of seeing and judging this brutal torture for the inhumanity that it really was. How could she ever experience anger?

I wrote 3 paragraphs about this baby and the hell of her painful experiences; then I posted my “love letter to my anger” on my website. During the following hours, the pain subsided. The next night, I could turn and get up much better, and the next day, I could do again my workout and stretch. The pain was gone. My body clearly felt that there was something missing from my article that I needed to understand. The beaten baby communicated with me about her horrible experiences through the only language available to her, the only language that she could speak – through the language of the body. It was one of my most fascinating, amazing experiences of therapy.


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