All information and resources at this website have been presented as part of my personal story and does not replace professional psychological care for mental health issues. The only legal and ethical advice I can offer is to seek professional help. 

If you have had or are having suicidal thoughts, please call: 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 

1-800-273-8255

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© 2017 by Janyne McConnaughey.                                                                                         

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What Educators and Therapists are Saying!

January 16, 2019

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WHO AM I ?

I am Dr. Janyne McConnaughey, retired educator, wife, mother and grandmother. I have a story. My story is one I repressed until two years ago when I chose to sit on a therapist's couch. Now healed, I am on a mission!

 

My mission is to clearly articulate both positive and negative effects of early nurturing and experiences on lifelong behavior and thinking patterns while promoting effective educational, spiritual, and therapeutic methods for the healing of inadequate attachment and childhood traumas.

I love California beaches, and the City of Seattle, but live in a 5th wheel with my husband, Scott, at the foot of Pikes Peak. 

There are lots of us who can’t ask for what we need or want. We have stories that caused this and it affects us in relationships and other humans and with God. Our fear of the shame that we internalized in the process of learning not to ask affects us in so many ways.

I did not come to this place of sharing easily or quickly. It was necessary to heal before sharing. It is important to share selectively and carefully at first because we may not get the reaction we hope for. Only in healing can we ever hope to help others to heal. When we share with others who themselves have unresolved pain, their silence and/or judgment can be frightening. That is the ending to their story; it is not the ending to yours. It is certainly not any ending I would ever desire.

Today, I am thankful for so much. My husband who took care of me (no small task), my therapist who believed in me when I couldn’t believe in myself, my children and grandchildren who I miss completely today, and all my truest friends (old and new) who have been such an important part of my healing. I am also thankful for the small child inside of me who chose to be BRAVE and live life despite what happened to her.

Not only was I telling my story to the world, but I was also was putting it in printed form. My fear of being corrected was well founded since my mother used to send my letters back to me with the errors circled. Seriously. Do. Not. Do. That. To. Your. Children. I am sure that in some form, she thought she was helping me to be a better writer.

This is really what saying #MeToo means. We are saying that there is nothing wrong with us. The longer we are silent, the greater the power we give to those who abused us. There are many that need to t open the cage of shame and begin healing. They are saying #MeNeither out of the fear their abusers embedded in the deepest part of their being—maybe those abusers still hold power over them. While being safe is essential, the only hope is to tell someone. It is the key that unlocks the cage.

When my earrings fell out and bounced across the floor, I was suddenly about six years old in an adult presenter’s body. I could do nothing right at that age, and my earring was shouting this truth from the floor where it lay. I wanted to run from the room, but I was trapped in my presenter’s body. I froze and then had to dig myself out. Self-deprecating humor was my best defense. I learned how to be very funny.

The tragedy of the human condition is not in eating the apple, but in the distortion of natural guilt. Our greatest loss is when we no longer view ourselves as God views us.

I never knew I was dealing with shame. I knew I had excessive anxiety about the simplest of things like ordering food in a fast food restaurant, waiting my turn to speak or give an announcement, leaving a phone message, getting lost on the way to somewhere, etc. etc. but I never understood the underlying problem was shame.

I stood in the doorway. I was very small, maybe two. I was sucking on my two middle fingers and watching my mother in the kitchen. I was forbidden from entering. Then I did the unthinkable. I stepped over the imaginary line and asked for a cookie.

Last week I had the opportunity to sit with a new group of potential friends and tell my story. That was a frightening thing to do because my story is one my mind has mostly hidden from me for 60 years. Survival required safety and being aware of my own story was not safe. It certainly wasn’t safe to tell it!

Where is it safe to tell our stories? Not many places fit the criteria of safety. For me, to tell my story meant that I had to reach the point where safety was not my paramount concern. Reaching that place was a long, arduous, painful road—especially since betrayal was so deeply embedded in my life.

As I sat in the circle of stran...

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