My family is complicated. Put on your seatbelts, because this will likely be long. A lot of people have it a lot worse, but it's not good. My parents got divorced when I was 4 years old, my mom married my stepdad about a year later, my half-brother was born when I was 8 and my brother was 10, life goes on. I know a lot of people who are really upset that their parents got divorced, but I'm relieved. My parents are not meant for each other and honestly, I have no idea how they ever thought they could be. They view the world in vastly different ways and their priorities are wildly different. My dad would do absolutely anything for his kids; he backs them no matter what and would give up any and all of his wants and needs to make me and my brother happy; we are priority number 1 and always have been. His dad died helping my uncle escape the Iranian revolution and I think that's a lot heavier than he makes it seem. He keeps the house at 75 degrees but would catch a cold in a heartbeat if it means I don't have to take off my hoodie. He doesn't like it when I sleep over friend's houses because he worries that I won't sleep comfortably and he makes avocado toast with me at 3am because sleep schedules are for losers and we need to get the ratio of avocado to olive oil to bread just right. He's analytical and binary and I love him. He has faults and character flaws, but that's another story. He's one of my favorite people.
My mom is passionate and hard-working and very conservative. She likes yoga and shoes and she keeps the house at 67 degrees (temperature compatibility is everything. They should've known it would never work from the get-go). She thinks A minuses are "solid but not great" and she wants more than anything for her kids to exceed her in success. She's the youngest of her siblings by a long shot and she spent a lot of time alone when she was a kid. She thinks material fortune makes up for inflicting trauma and that vitamin B will cure my depression. She loves me a lot and spends sleepless nights worrying about my future, but she points me in the direction of the blankets because anything above 70 is too hot.
My parents were never right for each other but they're friends. I'm lucky in that way. My stepdad was just getting out of his own much messier divorce when he re-met my mom on facebook and quickly packed up his life in Arizona, losing the custody battle for his 2 older teenage daughters, and heading out to sunny California to fall back in love with his high school sweetheart and senior prom date: my mom. adorable, right? My stepdad is a straight cis white christian financially comfortable male retired marine, and you can tell. He's not a bad guy, but he has a horrible attachment to toxic masculinity and anger issues that stem from never being taught how to talk about his feelings.
I grew up around a lot of violence mostly because of my step-dad. My mom is very high maintenance and expects a lot from people, which doesn't usually go well with someone with a hot temper and a bit of a chip on his shoulder.
They fought a lot when I was little, and while they've taken many steps to resolve those things, it's not like that erases the past.
I was too young to process everything that was going on, so while my brother was hurt and experienced that hurt immediately, repression and dissociation became some of my best talents. I remember very very little from the first ~12 years of my life. I have a total of around 5 memories (some just audio, some more like a live photo) of intense arguments from my childhood. I remember a lot of screaming; I remember the sweep of a police flashlight; I'll never forget the hand that smelled like alcohol locked way too tightly around my left wrist, or the little drop of blood on my mom's upper chest, or the glare of blue and red lights on concrete when 6-year-old me walked out to my dad's car.
Trauma is a unique beast. Not only does it remain alive and well within you, but it becomes part of you. Even if your conscious mind has forgotten what happened or buried it, your body remembers; your subconscious remembers.
Things happen that make you wonder. Why can't does my memory time-skip over whenever people yell? Why do I have a massively delayed reaction to things that emotionally or physically hurt me? Why do I have social anxiety? Why do I seriously fear for my safety around drunk adults?
I'm still uncovering most of my childhood, but I can see some of the pieces of the puzzle now, and that's good I guess.
Stay safe, be kind to yourself, remember that you are loved.