Everytime I turn around, I hear someone saying words like "you are more than the abuse" or "you are more than X" or "you are more than Y."
While this is true, in my literal subtractive thinking in this context, what's left of us if we take away the abuse, and the anger, and the hurt, and... you know.
I imagine that when all that is left is the core of a person and their inner being, I think this is the person inside. This is the very heart of this individual, the part they are afraid for others to see for fear of rejection. The thoughts that say everybody is better than me, and yet had it worse off than me. They deserve help, I don't. We long for acceptance, yet feel we don't deserve it. We want to be treated like a person, not like a project, yet the shame rears its hideous head.
Are we more than our shame, or hurt? Absolutely we are. Yet overcoming these needs time, patience, encouragement, support, love, affirmation. These are so easily rebuffed and deflected when the shame is too great. Repeated kindness of others starts to tear down those lies. Sometimes it is hard to find such kindness. But it's true - you, me, everyone here are more than the shame and abuse.