The truth will make you free but first it will make you really miserable. ~ Barry Stevens, born Mildred Fox, used by James A. Garfield and others
Judy (my sister) and I often discuss the importance of truth. Our perspective changed abruptly when we understood our childhood was littered with lies. Lies upon lies or opinions spoken as facts shaped our world. Counseling and learning what truth meant changed everything. We both in our own way started a truth campaign. We wanted to find our truth.
From Judy’s blog she shared, “The toughest thing to learn in life is truth. It’s inconvenient. It’s uncomfortable. It’s complicated and simple at the same time. It doesn’t bend. What we don’t grasp is that we never bend or crush the truth; we break ourselves against it.” https://theprojectbyjudy.wordpress.com/2016/06/09/introspection/
One of the struggles my counselor pointed out when he held up his note pad and asked me describe it. Of course, I replied it was brown, he then contradicted me and said it was yellow with blue stripes. The side facing him was yellow with blue stripes. We were both speaking our truth. He pointed out repeatedly that two people viewing the same thing will see different things. Other times, I encounter situations that are true some of the time but not always. Philosophy of logic helped me to recognize more and more situations that seemed to blur and confuse. I wanted answers. Many, many, many discussions with my counselor all revolved around my version of my life. What did I remember that was accurate and real? What I perceived was it the ‘truth’ or more distortions? I was shook to my moral bones to realize that people in my life systematical lied to me and distorted truth until black was white. I faced a total change of how I viewed my life. Distortions were faced. Acknowledged. With much struggle, I learned my truth. I was treated like a 3rd class citizen in my family. I was an extension of my mother with no respect and certainly no acceptance of me being a separate person deserving respect. I was told the words, “I love you,” with no actions backing the empty words. I distrusted my own perception of the world. I would say I wanted something and I was told that I didn’t or I was selfish or it was given to someone else. The hardest thing I faced was learning that my whole world was messed up and to learn black was black and white was white. I spent years sorting out what was fact and what was actually opinion. A challenge of a truth campaign is not for the faint at heart. Humbly accepting that my whole view was distorted and wrong was painful. It hurt to know some of the truths I learned. It hurt to accept adults in my life actively worked to gaslight and destroy me. I survived. I look to PTSD as a badge of honor because they threw the worst they could do and I survived. The truth set me free but it really hurt.