Abuse, in whatever form, always leaves a mark on the abused. Sometimes, it leaves one mark but, more often than not, it leaves several marks. These marks can be difficult to erase, however, most tend to stick around.

How you cope with those marks and how seriously they affect you, dictates the rest of your life.

I have been left with more than one mark. Some of what I have are difficult to imagine and understand and may not be noticeable when you first meet me.

One such problem that you can see is my poor posture.

I think I read somewhere that generally rounded shoulders is indicative of childhood abuse. I don't know if this true but I could see why it would be.

It's more noticeable when you are tall or are tall for the area in which you live in. Being 5' 8" in London is pretty much average. In Wiltshire where I used to live, it was above average. So the abuse I suffered had a lot of effect.

Basically, I have rounded shoulders or poor posture. I had to wear a posture brace whilst I was still at school. I'm needing to wear one now as I go horse-riding and poor posture makes it harder for the horse to work properly. I hate them but if they re-train my muscles then it will be a good thing. But, I'm lazy! I think you're only supposed to wear them for a couple of hours a day but I wear them most of the time. I tend to wear them quite tight, too so that I am always locked in the correct position. I know I have it tight enough when all the correct muscles in my back and neck start to ache. Others may use them so that the brace tightens when their shoulders are forward and loosen when the shoulders are in the correct position.

I doubt it will ever get better; not being a defeatist but it's been there for a long time and it wasn't dealt with early enough in my childhood. The occasional use of a brace when I was a teenager just wouldn't have done much at all.

Basically, I was constantly teased about parts of my body and constantly undermined, so I tried to make myself smaller.

How about you? Are you suffering from poor posture? What do you do to help yourself improve?