My name is Tammy, and this is my story

I am 44 and I struggle with Major Depressive Disorder

Just breathe…I tell myself that at least a hundred times a day sometimes. I often wonder how I ended up with the life I have. Married, career with two grown children that have been successful. On the surface it exceeds more than most will ever wish for. When you look deeper my demons from childhood are forever keeping me from being emotionally connected to any of it. When I was a child it was my normal. It wasn't until much later that I learned the things that I was exposed to was not ok and was abusive. I still struggle finding a voice to talk about it. I'm not sure if I am trying to protect the people, myself or just ashamed. Starting at age 6 I was given alcohol frequently by my parents and other family members. It was done as a complete socially acceptable thing. I made drinks for parties. I would drive them around by age 10. I was taught my body was much more important than my mind. There was a focus on sexuality. How to use flirtation as a means to get things. My mom started an affair on my dad around age 11 and quickly made me be her alibi and part of the torrid affair. Over time I came to love the person she had a relationship with. When the relationship ended I was devastated. I found myself experiencing a loss without closure and being 16 years old with this secret I have carried and could not discuss with anyone. My mom simply told me to now love my dad as I had loved this other person. I met the person that would be husband at 18 and he came from the most normal of normal families. I wanted that. It looked so much like the families on tv. They ate at the table, played board games, celebrated holidays. I became that person and slowly opened my family and how different I really was. It was only then I started to realize the sadness I carried. I also realized the anger. I still struggle with trying to know who I am. I have always from childhood had to be one person then present to others another side. Even when I got with my husband I wanted to be this normal and I wasn't that person either. I just wanted to be that so badly. So, now I am in a mental tug of war with my past and present. My inner child and adult. My mom has no apologies for the past. Understand this is small glimpse of the experiences. I don't feel happiness very much, I haven't much trust, I still struggle with using sexuality, I still present one face to the world while a completely different one hides underneath…I repeat to myself Just breathe

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