For much of my life, I was furious at God. During my childhood, I had been sexually and physically abused for ten years by close family members. For two of those years, I was locked up in my bedroom and deprived of basic necessities and outside human contact. I lived in an emotional and spiritual darkness that hardened my heart. I believed that a good God would not allow such atrocities in my life.
I married my wife, Ginger, 32 years ago. Since we began our marriage as Christians, I believed we were in for a great life of ministry, family and growing together.
Our first year of marriage went well. Both of us were surprised when during the second year, many of Ginger's emotional scars began to surface and I didn’t know how to handle her emotional baggage.
Do you ever think about what you think about in the bedroom?
My thought life has been an on-going battle in the bedroom. The very difficult memories of sexual abuse coupled with memories of past promiscuous behavior have their way of popping into my mind's eye at very inopportune times. The enemy uses these intrusive thoughts to distract, shame, or accuse me of past behaviors or abuse. They disrupt me and emotionally take a toll on me during special intimate times set aside for my husband.
My weight has been an issue since I had my children some 20+ years ago. I never lost my pregnancy weight--instead I have added extra pounds to it. Because I grew up in a physically and emotionally abusive home where a thin body was idealized (along with many other issues), I have struggled with lots of self-loathing concerning my body. The problem is I use food to comfort myself when I don't like my emotions, which has just complicated the body-image issue.
As a young girl, I loved Barbie. I wanted to own the Barbie Dream House, Ken, Midge, Skipper, and lots of outfits for the Barbie family dolls. In my eyes Barbie was perfect.
That illusion was carried into my teenage life. I also learned some very negative messages from my parents concerning my body. I was told that overweight girls were disgusting and that I had better maintain a thin and sexy body. As long as I looked good physically, I would be loved and accepted. I was very thin.