Written byÂ Kozo Hattori
I remember being a very compassionate child. While watching “The Little House on the Prairie,” I cried my eyes out when Laura couldnâ€™t give Pa a Christmas gift. But 12 years of physical abuse and being forced to the confines of the â€œact-like-a-man boxâ€ wrung most of that compassion out of me by the time I reached adulthood.
Although I was what therapists call â€œhigh functioning,â€ my lack of compassion was like a cancer that poisoned my friendships, relationships, business affairs, and life. At the age of 46, I hit rock bottom. Unemployed and on the verge of divorce, I found myself slapping my four-year-old sonâ€™s head when he wouldnâ€™t listen to me. As the survivor of abuse, I had promised myself that I would never lay a hand on my children, but here I was abusing my beloved son.
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