How Illness Affects My Recovery from Verbal Abuse

August 31, 2023 Cheryl Wozny

Living with an illness can be exhausting and defeating for anyone, especially someone healing from verbal abuse. When you are sick, the mind may explore possible outcomes, no matter how unlikely they may be. Unfortunately, the brain can be hard to shut off, particularly when the body is battling an illness. 

Battling Illness Alongside Verbal Abuse

As someone with an autoimmune disease, I frequently visited doctors and stayed in the local hospital throughout my childhood. I was a vulnerable kid who just wanted to feel better, but I had to stay in the hospital almost every year for a few days to a week due to my illness. 

When I felt my worst, I wanted someone to love and care for me. Unfortunately, this task fell on the doctors and nurses who attended to me instead of my immediate family. I got used to the circumstances each year when I would be admitted for care, away from my parents and sibling, as a regular occurrence.

In reality, I was broken because, as a young child, I realized I could not count on my parents for support and comfort when I needed it most. Thankfully, my extended family would visit me, bring me puzzle books and treats, and check up on me. I reluctantly accepted my situation as commonplace, something all children faced growing up.

Recovering from Verbal Abuse with an Illness

These days, I am still under a doctor's care. I have other health concerns that I deal with, but fortunately, I am no longer in a situation with verbal abuse. It doesn't mean that my recovery is more straightforward, though. Although years have passed since I was that young child, alone in the hospital, those feelings of abandonment and disregard still appear today. 

I recently had a two-week hospital stay and was quite sick. My partner would visit me almost daily and bring our children when he could. I remember feeling hopeless and despair as I lay in bed, unable to move or rest comfortably. Once my husband arrived, I felt safer. His presence alone comforts me, even when I am not sick. He helped ward off those old feelings of being alone and forgotten

Recovering from verbal abuse takes time. Each healing journey is unique, with individualized techniques and methods to combat the negative emotions felt from experiencing abuse. Those old feelings still come up now and then for me, but they are getting more infrequent as I heal. 

When I am sick, my brain starts to dig up old memories and bother me, reliving my past experiences. It takes a lot of strength and determination to remember that I am a different person now. I am healing from verbal abuse and helping to break the cycle of violence in my family. It takes a strong person to move away from a verbally abusive situation, and when you are battling an illness, that fight becomes even more challenging. 

If You Are Recovering from Verbal Abuse and an Illness

If you are recovering from verbal abuse with an illness, getting the support you need is vital. There are many ways to find help, from local groups to private counselors to friends and family. If you are sick and healing from verbal abuse, you can visit our resources page for assistance in your area. 

APA Reference
Wozny, C. (2023, August 31). How Illness Affects My Recovery from Verbal Abuse , HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 14 from

Author: Cheryl Wozny

Cheryl Wozny is a freelance writer and published author of several books, including mental health resources for children titled, Why Is My Mommy So Sad? and Why is My Daddy So Sick? Writing has become her way of healing and helping others. Find Cheryl on TwitterInstagramFacebook, and her blog

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