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Healing seems to get worse before it gets better

Starting to heal your trauma as a neurodivergent adult, in the process of “unmasking” seems to get worse before it gets better.

Our brains are incredible at protecting us. It protects us by not allowing us to see things that are outside our current belief system. It protects us by numbing out knowledge that would hurt us, through substances and generally just not allowing us to see it. It basically does everything it needs to for us to survive to this point.

Then you start to live a neurodivergent affirming way and start to unmask, and once you start seeing things as what is actually ’truth’, you can’t unsee them.

Suddenly you see all of the people who benefited from you living a traumatised life… and that part is excruciating. Have your whole world crack open as being all BS and having to start to live again with new knowledge. It’s why a lot of neurodivergents relapse into their unhealthy coping mechanisms at this part of their journey.

I personally have been told as part of my neurodivergent-affirmative journey that people, some being the closest in my life, liked me better when I was “fat, funny and drunk”. They didn’t like the version of me that wants to live past my 40’s and introduced exercise, supplements and and an eating plan that supports my brain.

I see how so many people close to me benefited from my people pleasing (which is a trauma response) ways, and have I have been taken advantage of and manipulated all my life. That’s hard to see.

I also see how so many people benefited at my expense with my impulse buying - everyone around me got things bought constantly, and then I was left broke and in debt. Then I put systems and people in place to stop the impulse buying, and all those people scattered.

It actually pains me that people saw me struggling through my adult years, and there were those around me who benefited from me not being able to “get my shit together”, and in a lot of ways, gave them permission to treat me “less than” and not show up as an equal in relationships, as well as giving them permission to not step up in their own life too.

So I get it. The veil lifts and sometimes you see a whole heap of shit that you wished you never seen.

But just know you are worth it regardless, even when you absolutely at that time will feel that you are not.

My neurodivergent-affirming journey took about 3 years to get to a place where I could accept myself and only have people around me who are on my team. 3 years was a long time with a lot of mistakes, and back steps and grief as I didn’t want to let go of the things in the end I had it to heal and my resistance constantly sent me backwards.

But we are worth moving forward with the people who see and love us for who we really are - our healed, neurodivergent-affirming version of us.

- ‘WC’ Rob

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