It's a great story...
Not sure what it is about the human being that likes to make great (fictional) stories about things that happened. Children particularly are so ego centric that many of us make internal attributions for the actions of others. ‘Dad left when I was 8’ becomes ‘I am going to be abandoned in the future'. Mum’s question about the 2% missed in a 98% maths mark, internalises to ‘I’m not good enough’. Aunty Elma’s comments about a chubby 14 year old internalise to 'hating my body'. The tragic death of a sister, age 4, is translates in our immature mind to 'life is unsafe and sad' during a time of incredible grief. We then drag the ‘what happeneds’ and the feelings we associated with it into our future. Future unrelated events are tainted with the same feelings. And we all do it. We drag around the baggage of events that may or may not have meant what we felt about it, and then associate those debatably incorrect associations onto our current and future way of being. Without question. We live in the assumption that our feelings are correct and truly representative of ‘what happened’. But most of the time it’s just a good story.
Your dad may have left your mum. Your mum may have been a hardnosed academic. Your aunty may have made a less than considerate comment about your cousin's chunky legs. But that’s it. That’s what happened. The rest is made up. Imagined. Justification for the feelings. Its not even true.
And there are many more serious events that we continue to tolerate affecting our present. Sexual abuse, horrific as it is affects people in different ways. Who moves on and who doesn’t? Those who move on choose to leave the baggage in the past. Refuse to drag it around with them. The memories never go away, but we have a choice to give up the right to hold onto it. To let go of the associations that we made about it. The feelings of 'I'm worthless', 'I'm damaged'. Holding on to it is valid, understandable, everyone has compassion for your story. BUT, it continues to rob us of our life when it is no longer happening.
Social psychology studies human behaviour. Good and bad. It investigates what is. I want to know what could be. What is possible. What enables change: overnight transformation and long term human development. What helps us let go of the past, live in the present and hope for the future? What makes us break out of our natural inhibitory, self conscious human condition and intentionally work towards a better world for ourselves and others. I suspect it’s love. Love for and from other humans. In the absence of love, we breakdown. In the presence of love we transform and anything is possible. In the presence of love we let go of our right to our ‘stories’ and just be. And once we let go of our stories, we are free to receive love. What happened becomes just that. What happened. Our story becomes more about what we create, rather than the baggage that holds us back.