“This condition of alcoholism was really disturbing me. I didn’t want to be at home, I couldn’t stand this atmosphere. The only thing I wanted was to leave. So I started saving up, and at 23 years old I left the house. I had my own small apartment with two rooms. I finally had my own place, I wasn’t hearing anyone screaming anymore. That was important. I’m actually still very sensitive to noise. I almost fainted several times at work because of people fighting. Parents who abuse their children don’t realize that the trauma lasts throughout life.
I was in my twenties when I had this thought about my mother: “despite everything, she had a sad life, she was never able to enjoy herself”. Women didn’t go out at that time. They had to stay at home to knit pullovers, or to learn how to cook. But she was generous with her children, with the little means that we had at the time. She did her best.
Everyone tells me that my life turned out pretty well, considering my childhood. I have the same independent character as my father. I divorced 39 years ago. I’ve had other companions and all… but I prefer a small “in my home” than a big “in someone else’s home” ! I’m happy alone. I have everything I need, I’m not envious. And this really simplifies relationships. My friends are true friends. I don’t have much, but it’s enough because I live a simple life. I don’t lament my plight: if I have something, great, if I don’t, never mind. There’s no point in twisting your own stomach because you didn’t get something.
Some friends tell me “you’re really harsh [dure]”. But with the life that I had, I don’t want to hear people whining anymore. This kind of past makes you put things into perspective. You know, I never went to see a therapist. When I’m not well, I take my backpack and I go for a hike in the mountains. And if I’m really alone, I scream “ouaah!”. You release stuff like that! And when you see that beauty, these flowers… it heals me. It makes me feel happy and allows me to empty my mind.”
(Parc La Grande | translated from French)