This is something I wish we could understand about child abuse survivors:
I am finally forgiving myself for the things that I did to survive. Those things that seemed foolish or harmful from the cheap seats. Those things that seemed self destructive and counter-intuitive from the outside. Many of them were, honestly, but I’m not sure I could have survived the pain earlier. I think they were desperate measures, but then, that’s what desperate times call for.
It’s true. Children don’t have the mechanisms to deal with what is happening when they are being abused, so they do whatever they have to do to simply survive. If you’ve never been in a situation so desperate that all you can do is survive, I don’t believe you can judge.
That’s not to say those things aren’t harmful to ourselves and we don’t have a responsibility to find better coping mechanisms now that we are adults, but we don’t have to apologize for surviving.