November 11, 2019
Ask Deepak

Apologizing to a friend.


When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily.


I am a survivor of child sexual abuse and have been trying to heal myself ever since. I am a healthy looking 27 year old but with serious issues in managing relationships. Only a couple of my very close friends know about my past. Over the years I have been trying to accept what happened to me and move on. I have many friends who have helped me a lot to move away from my painful situation without knowing my past. I love spending time with my family and friends, and have become quite balanced.

 I have always given a lot of importance to what I think and have always viewed every situation emotionally. The idea was to give myself the caress that I have always been looking for. But now I have become a person who thinks she is always right as she has been through the difficult times and I try to justify all my actions even if it hurts few people. I expect everyone to handle their problems the way I do – by expressing myself openly to my friends or by actions.

But recently I have been proven wrong. A very close friend of mine has had a difficult life because his mother is very possessive about him and has been living a life in suffocation. But he has accepted the situation and found his solace in his writings and music. He does not express himself openly and has very few friends. I am very disturbed with his situation. He did consider me as a friend who understands him very well (though he is not aware of my own problematic childhood). I have been trying to tell him that he needs to express himself openly to his friends in order to heal himself.

But he says that he does express himself, but through his writings and his music. I argued with him about this saying he should not limit himself to these inanimate things and find solution to his problems by expressing himself to his friends. But he got angry and upset saying that he is happy with his life now and that I did not understand him at all. He is not willing to talk to me now. I have hurt him and

  I would never want to hurt him. What should I do? I am not sure if he will accept my apology and it would be very difficult explaining to him, why I always think that everyone should handle problems my way. Now I very well understand that every person deploys his own method to manage problems, but how do I explain that to him without letting my problem known to him. Please help me.


It’s not as hard as you think. Put your fears aside for the moment. Call him up and apologize. Tell him that he has taught you something important; that everyone is entitled to express themselves and heal the way they need to. He is not going to ask about your past, and you don’t need to feel obligated to tell him.

In this era of “over-sharing” I respect and applaud you in not telling everyone about your past, because not only do most people then always see you through the label of child abuse survivor, you can yourself begin to overly identify with that label and that can become an impediment to your full healing.

Take this episode with your friend as a sign that you are continuing your own healing. Part of the legacy of being a victim of child abuse is that one felt completely powerless as a child and the implicit bond of trust a child has that the adult will protect her is broken. As an adult survivors often compensate by trying to maintain complete control of relationships. That includes the need to be right about everything, and assume that the only right way is their way.  In recognizing this pattern in yourself and your willingness to see that another’s  way can be just as good as your way is an indication that you are finding more inner security and trust through your healing. Congratulations.



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