In February this year, 2017, I sat down with a purpose and within sixteen days I had written my book in it’s entirety. It flooded out of me as soon as I put pen to paper, which soon turned to directly typing it out, after I had copied four chapters onto a word document.
From a young age, I can remember feeling “invisible”. After time, the feelings of invalidation and rage, were turned inwardly and I became very introverted and did not open up to anyone very much about anything. That was until it got to the point in my life where all my hidden feelings and emotions that were stuffed deeply away could not be contained any longer. They had begun to seep out and I felt that I was drowning in sorrow.
I now know as a healed adult that I was living with the burden and consequence of something that is now referred to as CEN, also known as Childhood Emotional Neglect.
However, this was not identified whilst I was a young girl, partly through neither me nor my family revealing anything. It was manifesting in other ways, trauma induced mental illness and behaviors. The real cause, the core of it all, firmly hidden away.
I became severely depressed and alienated myself. At fifteen I was absent from school, when I should have been studying for my exams, a prime time after all of your years of schooling. I hid away in libraries mostly, searching through book after book to find out what was wrong with me and what could I do to help myself. I soon became very knowledgeable about psychology, psychiatry and all things mental health. Once home again, I locked myself away in my room, and would spend hours crying, and self harmed feeling so tormented within.
I worried incessantly about my future and how to cope as an adult in an adult world, as back then I had no “toolbox” of coping skills. I was ridden with anxiety which also turned into obsessions and compulsions. My life was very hard and I felt very alone.
I reached out to The Samaritans in the end, as I felt desperate and did not know how to cope with my overwhelming emotions. They were wonderful and helped me so much, someone to listen to me, it made such a difference to be heard.
Eventually my school reported to my parents about my absenteeism ,my mum took me to see our GP. I was diagnosed with depression and prescribed medication. Then I was referred to the authority of Educational Psychology as I still refused to attend school.
In between this, I was getting worse, my symptoms and felt suicidal most days. I saw an adult Psychiatrist and was prescribed different meds. He saw how angry I was but no other help was offered. I was only fifteen.
Not long after this, I was admitted to an adolescent psychiatric unit. I was there for sixteen months. This obviously had a big impact on me and on my family.
On discharge, I was no further moved on and went back to the same environment and I was as full of fear as ever about my future and how to cope day to day.
I went onto find new ways to “cope” and became ill with an eating disorder, Bulimia nervosa, for twelve years not long after this. I flipped from one unhealthy strategy to another, living a life of chaos, inside and out as it affected every aspect of my life for a long time. Stays in adult psychiatric hospitals.
Anyway, fast forward to now, aged forty six, and I am thriving. I went through years of therapies and treatments and dissected my entire life. I learnt a lot about myself, how I operate and how to change from very debilitating circumstances. Through a huge desire to help others that are struggling I worked for two charities prior to starting a business, supporting and advocating for disabled people.
My mission now is to help others suffering from the impact of CEN , childhood emotional neglect. I unfortunately know this inside out but the silver lining is that I came through it intact and with this shining light to help others find their way too.
My book which can be purchased here from Amazon https://tinyurl.com/krpbfja is just the beginning. I am creating online courses currently and also organizing workshops for local people.
You can find out more about me and what I am doing here www.samanthahoughton.co.uk and I have a very active Facebook page ->View Here