You, Me, Empathy - Episode 68: Domestic Violence and Finding Your Voice Again with Brynn Woodley

Trigger Warning: Sexual assault, disordered eating, and suicidal ideation are covered in this episode.

On Episode 68 of You, Me, Empathy, Brynn Woodley and I explore how we humans deal with change, growing up “too sensitive,” feeling like we don’t belong or fit in, inner child work in EMDR therapy, and the deep-seeded trauma of domestic violence.

Brynn shares how, when she was a kid, she felt like she didn’t belong, and when she moved to a different elementary school, that led to her being bullied and picked on. She talks about how that led to this feeling of wanting to be loved and accepted, but the people around her made her feel like she was just being “too sensitive” and saw sensitivity as a weakness. Brynn’s emotional vibrance scared her parents, and didn’t know how to meet her where she was at.

How can we be ourselves if people can’t see us?

So she withdrew from the world and lived inside her imagination as an escape and survival tool. (I relate to this deeply.) Brynn’s sensitivity was hard for others, but for her it was a superpower. She felt like she was good at reading and feeling the emotions of others, and put others’ emotions above hers—which naturally led to her not taking care of her own self.

We talk about letting go of the impact our parents make on us—even giving them compassion and a beautiful forgiveness—plus how EMDR therapy has helped Brynn navigate and be a time traveler in her own life, traveling back to when she was a kid and finding grace and acceptance in that journey.

Wee explore Brynn’s relationship with over-exercise, anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating she started doing around 11-12 years old. And we finish talking about Brynn’s relationship to her ex-husband, a deeply insecure, emotionally and religiously manipulative, and abusive man who sexual assaulted Brynn on multiple occasions throughout their marriage. Finally, Brynn shares how she’s creating her identity and finding her own voice for the first time in her life.

I’m so proud of her and thankful she had the courage to be vulnerable and share her story!

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