my old step brother, he’s a person that was not good to me. anyways, he came to my dad’s house today with his family (i guess my dad was taking them to go buy something) and it just brought back so many memories. now i don’t know how to feel about the situation and about my dad not caring about how i felt.
- When old memories suddenly and unexpectedly rush back to us, we can often feel very confused and maybe even overwhelmed. Thank you for choosing to explore your feelings and share your story with the TeenCentral community.
- If you are ever feeling unsafe or experiencing strong emotions and need some more immediate assistance, please remember that you do not need to manage these moments on your own. There are some great resources like the Crisis Textline that are available 24/7 for anyone who may need somebody to listen to how they are feeling. If you just text “Hello” to 741741, somebody will be available to start a conversation and give you that extra support that could help so much!
- When we are confused by how we are feeling, it can be helpful to try to process our thoughts and emotions with another person that we trust. It sounds like you may have already tried to ask for some support from your dad, but you seem a little disappointed in his response. Perhaps there is another close adult in your life, like your mom, an older cousin, or even a family friend, who may be able to listen as you sort through your past memories and current feelings?
- It is very common that certain experiences can seem to unconsciously bring up past memories. This can be really confusing because it seems like it just happens by itself, without us even being aware of what is occurring. If we are able to identify what seems to be triggering this flood of memories, we can often gain some insight and understanding about our reactions. Perhaps you could try using the “Weekly Mood Tracker” on the “Tools” tab of TeenCentral.com to help you see if there are certain people, places, or situations that seem to cause you to think more or less about your past.
- If you are ever feeling overwhelmed by old memories, it can be helpful to utilize some calming techniques that embrace the idea of mindfulness and living in the present. There are many strategies that you can explore, but a simple and effective one that can be done anywhere involves focusing on your breathing. Try taking a deep breath in for four seconds, holding your breath for four seconds, exhaling for four seconds, and then resting your breath for four seconds. It may seem a little weird at first, but this exercise can really help, especially during those times when our bodies can feel a little out of control.
- It seems like seeing your stepbrother led to a strong reaction, but you are not exactly sure of how you are feeling. Sometimes when we are stressed, it can be hard to express ourselves verbally and put words to the emotions that we are experiencing. Perhaps you could try painting, drawing, or photography to capture how you are feeling in different moments? It can be very liberating to use a creative outlet to communicate all of the many thoughts and feelings that we experience each day. Check out the post on using “Art as a Coping Skill for Stress” on TeenCentral.com for tips on how to get started with your own art journal!