So it begins

I am finding as I embrace voicing my thoughts and experiences publicly that I am facing an equal amount of support versus defiance.

Simultaneous love and disdain.

I expected that some readers would find this subject matter offensive. I knew readers would have strong opinions. I know that there are people who would rather not talk about such uncomfortable topics. I suspect that for some it may cause unpleasant memories from their own pasts that they are not prepared to deal with just yet.

If ever.

I respect and honor that. It took me over three decades to get here.

I have learned however that it doesn’t go away. No matter how much we may want it to or how strenuously we will it to. It waits. Silently. Patiently. Messing up our relationships or sabotaging our opportunities. Sending anxiety coursing through our days and flashbacks of terror running through our nights.

It will wait.

I have spoken with some survivors who didn’t start to acknowledge their abuse until they were well in their seventies. They lived okay lives and had relationships and children and careers and thought they had gotten over it. Thought they had moved on. That it didn’t bother them.

But it waited.

I started this journey by posting my writing on an anonymous blog for victims of sexual abuse. I am not quite ready to share all of those thoughts publicly. Some of my writing is incredibly dark, rambling and not eloquently written. Sometimes I write to purge my madness in the moment. To get it out of my brain and make space so I can keep going. Some of it I may never feel comfortable sharing outside of that familiar zone of safety.

I would however like to share something I had written previously and posted to this site as I believe it pertains to the point I think I am trying to get at.

We are all worthy. Shame should not have the power to keep us from knowing this simple truth. No matter when or how we decide to face our demons.

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Thoughts…

I was just about to send somebody a private message and my internet connection was lost. Everything I wrote was gone. I felt like it was an important thing to say and I was somewhat distressed that I didn’t have the energy or the right words to go back and say it all again.

Then I realized maybe we all need to hear it.

We were discussing the fact that many of us just want to feel better or healthy or whole or as she stated “undamaged.”

So many of us do this by trying to just go on with our lives and not think about our trauma or by comparing our trauma and thinking we really didn’t have it that bad.

Maybe we should even be grateful? Comparatively. Maybe it would be best to just ignore all of this and keep moving on.

Maybe.

But little things pop up that make you think of it. Sometimes in subtle ways, other times in an obvious explosion of clarity. They keep coming up. Sights or sounds or tastes or breathing. Too much light, too much dark. The rustle of clothing. A song on the radio. A smile. A touch. A word. A scent. These every day experiences turn into something much more and somehow find a way to tunnel through our best laid defenses and scream at us to wake up. To fight. To reclaim that part of ourselves that was stolen.

I have been running from my past for the majority of my life. Downplaying my experiences and pretending that it wasn’t so bad. Lying to myself. Slowly killing the parts of myself that I love the most. Giving each part of what made me special away to the manipulative sociopaths of my past (and present) by giving them exactly what they tried or try to take.

My voice.

My worth.

My dignity.

Myself.

I can’t do it anymore. I won’t. They may have led me to this place against my will but I’m here for a reason.

We all are.

11 thoughts on “So it begins

  1. One of the hardest parts to deal with are the facts that those that hurt and victimized us are the ones we trusted to love us and keep us safe. I just refuse to let my history define or consume me. I refused to continued to let post traumatic continue to victimize me.

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    1. It sucks. Every day I feel differently. I think owning it and talking about it and finding out that so many of us have suffered through this is helping. It makes it worse too because it enrages me that so many have been there but it helps to fuel the rage fire that is needed for change. I can’t change what happened, but I can give a voice to pain. I can let it out of the box and let others know they can talk about it without letting it define them. Either way, You are amazing Scot and my blogging has helped me to connect to you in a whole new way. Thank you for reading my writing and for helping me along the way.

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  2. My daughter referred me to this website. I am hoping this is the place to help & encourage me to begin to put words to my past. I am 74 yrs. old & am just now coming to terms with past abuse. I have been so afraid to share; afraid no one would believe. I tremble as I write for fear of retaliation from members of my own family whom I believe truly do not know while I know others do.

    My past has defined my life & who I am. It has destroyed relationships & driven friends away. But I have lost ME in my past. I pray this first writing will swing open doors for me to continue healing realizing I was never responsible for what happened to me. It is my past; not my future.

    As I begin this trip my heart weeps for all of you have suffered in many of the same ways I have. I pray for release, peace, acceptance of yourselves & understanding we can be made whole again. Thank you for letting me speak.

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    1. Mary. I am trying to find the right words to impress upon you how much this message means to me. So much about this seems impossible at times. There are many days when I wish I had never started doing any of it. The feeling of being judged or ridiculed follows me around and causes such anxiety at times that I can’t stand myself.

      But I know I’m doing the right thing. I know that the more we talk about this, the better our chances are of reclaiming the innocence that was taken from us.

      Your message is especially meaningful to me because so often when I’m grieving for what I lost, I’m also trying to find a way to help my mom express her pain. She has nobody. Much like you, her whole life she has had to endure her pain in silence. She couldn’t tell anyone. Why should so many have to walk this earth feeling so much shame and responsibility? It’s not okay. The more we talk, share and fight this the stronger we become and the closer we are to reclaiming that part of us we thought was lost forever.

      Write. Write every day.Get it out. Write even if you don’t know what is going to come out of it. Write even if you don’t know what you want to say. It will help. It is the best way I have found for the little me locked up inside of the shell I had become to find her worth. You were not to blame and you were not responsible and your voice is so,so, valuable.

      Thank you and please thank your daughter for me. Sometimes I ask out loud for help. Asking the universe to send someone to remind me that I’m doing the right thing. Especially when it is so freaking hard and I want to quit the most.

      Tonight, you are my angel. Thank you.

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