I think maybe I was abused as a kid.
If you've been having flashbacks of childhood experiences you didn't remember having, please take them seriously.
Traumatic memories are stored in our brains differently than other everyday memories. The emotions, images, and even physical sensations of a childhood trauma are shattered & hidden throughout your brain. This is a brilliant survival reflex we all have. Kids could't be resilient without it. And, after you're safe and grown up, it's common for your subconscious to begin letting these trauma memories leak out, one fragmented memory at a time. We call these involuntary thoughts of the past flashbacks. This is PTSD, and, if left untreated, it often leads to addiction, homelessness, despair, agoraphobia, eating disorders, sleep disorders, imprisonment, trouble concentrating at school or work, and dozens of other life-threatening mental and physical problems.
Some flashbacks come in the form of extremely intense physical or emotional sensations that may cause you to cry uncontrollably or be overcome with fear or a desire to die (even a desire to "just" never have been born). Often, there are no visual memories attached to these emotional memories at first. This kind quickly takes over your body and your mind and debilitates you, sometimes leading to dissociation.
Because my flashbacks were physical and emotional at first, without context or even visual images, I ignored them. I rationalized them in all the ways: "I'm PMSing." "I saw that weird movie last night." "I drank a lot." "I just get scared sometimes." As my flashbacks progressed to become more intense and specific over the next few months, I told myself: "That's impossible." "Mom and Dad would have known if that were true." "Surely other people would have noticed." "There's no way X would do something like that to me; he/she loves me!"
The more I resisted those memories, the more they controlled me.
If this sounds familiar, reach out & talk to someone you can trust. Email Michelle at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can chat. Ask your family questions. Look for a trauma-trained counselor YOU CAN TRUST & make an appointment ASAP. Go see a psychiatrist YOU CAN TRUST and see if meds may help in your situation. Follow Listen to Kids on our website & social media; we pump out information & encouragement. Check out our "Further Reading and Research" page, and our "Find Help>National or Local Resources" page.
You can do this. We all need to deal with our crap from the past or our crap will deal with us. Take control. CONTROL YOUR STORY or it will control you. There are SO MANY wonderful resources & therapies for PTSD out there; Listen to Kids exists in order to share those & provide a survivor community.