I long overstayed in an abusive, toxic family situation. I was emotionally, psychologically, financially, and physically abused by more than one family member.

Why stay (aside from the abuse cycle many victims become stuck in)? Because socially, we’re programmed to forgive and forget, turn the other cheek when it comes to ‘family.’ Hell, people even victim shame those suffering from abuse telling the victim they must have done something to earn it or dismiss it, telling them to “let it go” or the blanket, “But that’s your [mom, dad, brother, sister, family member],” putting the onus on the victim to accept it and go back because “they’re family.”

Well, I’m here to say, if your family is using and hurting you, I hope you can find a way to leave — for your own health, peace of mind, and well-being. No one should put up with abuse, regardless of the abuser. Being a relative does not give you a free pass to harm the loved ones born to you or around you.

Take my advice, get out. Get away. Run. Knowing what I do, I would have left at 18 and never looked back. Leaving sooner would have been ideal, but the system (especially back in the day) did nothing for child victims of poverty and violence. At least, not in my case.

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Technophobe Who Codes | UX Generalist | Freelance Writer | Egalitarian-Feminist | True-Crime/Forensics Enthusiast

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