Kelly Smith: Growing Up In A Nightmare
What makes you a Beautiful Disaster?
My name is Kelly and I was diagnosed with PTSD 7 years ago. My PTSD does not stem from service in the armed forces, as most people relate PTSD to service men and women. My PTSD stems from sexual and physical abuse from birth to age 5 under the care of my biological mother who is an addict and physical and mental abuse from age 6-13 at the hands of my stepmother.
I was also the victim of the date rape drug at age 20. There were custody battles, foster homes, visits from children’s services and intense therapy and counseling all throughout my childhood.
Under my biological mothers care I was sexually abused by the man who supplied her with her addiction and physically abused by her. Most of the time I was locked in my bedroom and not let out to even go to the bathroom. My meals generally consisted of what my sister and I could find (generally raw ramen noodles and the like) once my mother passed out.
My sister would go out through our bedroom window, in the front door, and unlock our bedroom door to let me out. The physical and mental abuse at the hands of my stepmother was nothing short of crippling...it left me with several physical scars and little to no self esteem.
Why do you identify with the beautiful disaster brand?
What didn’t kill me did make me stronger. Being a beautiful disaster is believing that our experiences and the scars we bear from those experiences is part of what makes us beautiful. We are all perfectly imperfect.
What has life been like for you?
At first, there was a constant struggle within to try and figure out what was happening to me as I had suppressed a large amount of the details of my sexual, physical, and mental abuse. I began to drink heavily, suffered from nightmares, and even attempted to take my own life at one point. I spent most evenings drinking to the point of black out. I desperately sought approval and validation from everyone, anyone, someone. The mental break came after my second stepmother lost her battle with cancer. At that point my body began to take on the stress my mind couldn’t and I was literally wasting away.
What happened for you to turn it around?
I finally sought help, received my diagnosis, and have overcome so many obstacles since then. I realized that I am more than the things that have happened to me.
What is your life like now?
I still struggle from time to time with managing my stress levels and anxiety, but I love who I am now! I am a college graduate, the wife of an amazing man, and a mother to 3 beautiful boys! I am a perfectly imperfect beautiful disaster ❤️