No Apologies

Please know that I appreciate and acknowledge the myriad of different pieces that contribute to the dysfunction that is the sickness called childhood sexual abuse. I try so much to understand why it is happening or has happened. Sometimes the abuse goes back for decades in families or with certain groups (religious or not) or specific individuals and is ignored.
I’m trying to figure out why.I’m not going to find the answers by letting it go. Should I be ashamed of that? should any of us be ashamed for what we endured? I think the shame lies in placing blame or indifference or embarrassment or fear of what others might think.
Lucky for me, I have never been one to care too much about appearances. I’m able to sleep better at night owning who I am and vocalizing what I’m fighting for. I’m far from perfect, but I know I can honestly say I make a difference because of my faults while trying to learn from them. Not sweeping them behind the microwave with the mouse shit.
Religion does help some people to forgive. I respect that.
Do not misunderstand my search for justice for children and adult survivors with intolerance.
Some people use their religion to further spread ignorance or to ignore the bigger problem.
I’m pretty sure the God I answer to wouldn’t let me rest easy without addressing the issue of harming innocent children or anybody for that matter and letting it go because I forgave myself for doing so.
Seems to me that might be part of the problem?

Forgive

Forgive

verb for·give \fər-ˈgiv, fȯr-\

: to stop feeling anger toward (someone who has done something wrong) : to stop blaming (someone)

: to stop feeling anger about (something) : to forgive someone for (something wrong)

: to stop requiring payment of (money that is owed)

 

I’m starting to shudder every time someone throws out the word forgiveness.

Just forgive. That’s all. Once you forgive all will be well.

Forgive me for saying so, but the word forgive is thrown around so frequently I’m starting to view it as a sentence enhancer instead of an act. A quick fix response instead of addressing an actual issue. A Botox injection for an action best not thought about. It gives you a temporary and false sense of security but eventually the appeal and the synthetic imagery fades leaving you with the same bold truth once you find the courage to really look in the mirror.

I don’t know that I know what forgiveness actually is or isn’t and I’m quickly able to admit that fact. Forgiveness is sort of an abstract idea, isn’t it?

Forgiveness is a verb.  So it shows action. The action of forgiveness?

Forgiveness is defined primarily as a way to stop feeling angry towards someone who has wronged you.

Many associate the act of forgiveness with the idea that ultimately God will be the one to forgive or not.

I could be wrong (probably am) but don’t you have to ask God to be forgiven?

Do you really think the sociopaths that are committing these crimes against children are going to be asking for that? Or caring if their victims “forgive” them? If anything they are enjoying the fact that they can continue to manipulate you to the point in which you feel you can or should offer them forgiveness.Something they don’t care about. It’s meaningless to them.

They don’t think they have done anything wrong. How can you ask for forgiveness if you think you have nothing to be forgiven for and doesn’t that dispute the entire thought process behind asking God for forgiveness?

Anger is a verb as well.

Anger at times can be harmful. Anger is raw and authentic and confusing. Anger is real and justified.What do we do with all of this anger? It causes great conflict and turmoil and often times it is because a person is struggling with something internally and they don’t know how to express it or channel it.

They are told to forgive. Let go of that anger. To move on.

How does that honor the fact that the person probably has every right to feel angry? How is that validating what the person experienced? How does it help the person with those intense emotions work through them so that they can hopefully better understand what happened and try to come to terms with it?

I’m not angry with my abuser. I’m not angry about my past. I’m not angry about my experiences or the fact that it didn’t have to happen. I’m not angry with all of the adults that ultimately let me down through their own fear, shame or bias.

I’m enraged towards the apathy that continues to accompany childhood sexual abuse and the lack of understanding with what causes it and the indifference as to how to stop it and the disgust behind not being willing to discuss it and the false hope that blind forgiveness  can bring.

How Sweet the Sound

I seriously doubt that a former atheist slave trader and a suicidal poet who had been institutionalized for insanity would have stood out as anyone’s first choice when it came to writing world changing, soul reaching and universal identified with hymnal lyrics.

Somehow that happened.

Newton, a reformed atheist turned Ordained Minister challenged Cowper, a crazy misunderstood Christianity loving wordsmith to a hymnal duel.

Write a new Hymn to a familiar tune in time for each Thursday’s bible study.

Will Cowper and John Newton hailed from different backgrounds but had the same things most of us have in common. Pain, loss, confusion, sorrow, anger and the desire for redemption to name a few. Through their salvation and their ability to forgive they both felt a desire to make others and themselves better.

I’m guessing anyways. I didn’t hang with them personally but it has been widely reported that this was the case.

Newton and Cowper made change happen by owning who they were and sharing their pain with others. Easier said then done but it eventually led to penning Amazing Grace, a song undeniably powerful in the simplicity of its message and one most can readily identify with.

I am grateful to all of you who send me prayers. I do believe in a higher power or a force larger than myself. I just don’t think that simply putting my trust in any given faith blindly will help me or any of us find the answers.

Step outside of what you think you know and listen to the people around you.  No matter what you believe or who you pray to or what you have been told.

Fight. Talk. Understand. Listen. Connect. Heal. Forgive. Make change happen because of your experiences. Don’t stand around and wait for it to happen or place blame when it doesn’t happen the way you thought it would or use religion as a way to not see what is right in front of you.

Use your voice, however it feels right to you.

Write your song.

Tell your story.

Challenge your best buddy to a hymnal writing contest.

You never know what could happen…

A Place to Scream

Finally realizing I needed to be accountable to myself and release some of my childhood pain led me to writing about my past experiences.

Sharing my worst secrets and thoughts publicly was not something I ever envisioned doing. I never in my wildest imaginings thought that maybe someday anything I had to say would matter.

I’m not even a writer. I needed an outlet to try to prevent my very real and incredibly fast fall from grace from accelerating. Instead of numbing those thoughts or pretending they didn’t exist I forced myself to explore them. I wrote them down. I got them out.

One day I felt like writing for myself wasn’t good enough. I needed to share it.

I have things to say. My voice and the right to use it was taken from me before I even knew I could make my own choices. I have been holding this crap inside for far too long. Creating a world of isolation and blame for things I never set in to motion.Things that should never happen to anyone yet continue to happen  on a daily basis to children everywhere.

I was conditioned to feel that I needed to keep carrying the baggage silently. Made to feel that I somehow earned and deserved it. Most victims of childhood sexual abuse are made to feel that way. It ensures our compliance, further enabling the abuser to continue hurting the victim.

Through sharing my thoughts, fears and memories I have found that there is a need for survivors to feel that they are not alone. So many have reached out to say thank you and ask me to write more. I am trying to find a way to reach those that need it most. Many of my readers and friends have suggested more social networking kind of thing. It scares the hell out of me because I don’t really know what I am doing. I also have that irrational fear that by starting a blog or creating a page or writing a book I will be seen as whiny or dramatic or trying to clamor for attention. I am by nature the exact opposite of anyone that enjoys and/or seeks attention.

I’m doing it anyways.

I would rather “like” a page that brings awareness to a topic that is important than to some insignificant bullshit that steals our time and dulls our thoughts and prevents us from fighting for or thinking about things that matter.

I hope that my rage doesn’t diminish anybodies interest in what I have to say. It is a powerful message. My delivery at times is not tactful. My thoughts at times are erratic and may seem childlike in their delivery.

That is because they are.

I’m just now learning how to voice the injustice of what unfolded when I was young. I’m just now trying to being heard.

I’m throwing an adult temper tantrum and people are responding and relating to my screams.

Far more than I ever expected.

Too many.

The more support we have in being able to speak the unspeakable or feel safe enough to scream instead of remaining silent the better our chances are of saving a child from what we had to endure.

To me, that makes it all worth it.

In other news…

I don’t know if I’m ever going to let myself become desensitized to the appalling depths of sleaziness continuously found in human behavior.

I am still surprised by the new ways people come up with to abuse and demoralize others.

I will never stop believing that somehow just being a decent fucking person might actually get you somewhere. Money or not. Power or not. Friends, affluence, reputation, size,strength, intelligence, attractiveness level and sparkling personality aside.

If you notice a person is struggling on any level; do you try to help?

Do you even notice?

I may have been abused as a kid and all of that drama but I refuse to let my past or present dictate my worth. I never have. Even before I confronted my worst. I am nobodies victim.

Certainly not my own.

Angry may not be the best word to describe the itching I have inside of me at times that wants to scream through the wall of blatant fucking ignorance encountered on a daily basis when trying to find a way to say the things easier left unsaid.

Why are more people not livid about the shitty things that happen every day, including but certainly not limited to abuse? Is change that unfathomable? Have we actually come to a place in society where we have just accepted that most people are assholes and excuse their behavior because of it? Do people really hate themselves and others on such a level that we have given up even trying to make a difference?

Don’t respond to me with platitude bullshit either because in case you couldn’t tell I’m not in the mood.

I may have shitty self-esteem and walk around with my head down 90% of the time but when I look up, you better bet your ass I’m going to fight. Verbally, mentally, physically or otherwise. I will never stop. If I do, I know I will be the same as it seems most everybody else is or wants to be.

Dead inside.

I’m not there yet.

Neither are the rest of you.

Wake the fuck up and realize you matter. That everyone does. Stop letting others make you feel like you somehow deserve to be treated like shit. Even if for some reason you think you like it. Even if you actually do like it.

Especially then.

It’s probably only because you are not used to being treated any other way.

And for the love of fuck stop using and or making excuses as to why your life will never change if you have never even once tried to change it.

It’s called accountability and it is not a new concept.

Morning video share

I have shared this video before. I love everything about it. The Amazing Grace/Fight song mashup, the obvious joy exuding from the men playing the instruments, the fact that it was filmed in Scotland, the scenery, the bagpipes. Seriously. I cannot get enough of it.

I have watched it at least a dozen times.

I find it to be just as inspiring and beautiful every time. Anything that can invoke that type of response in me deserves to be shared. I can be very difficult to reach, emotionally speaking and otherwise.

So many of us are deeply effected by pain that is horrendous. Pain that inhibits us from being able to move forward. Pain that immobilizes us at times, rendering us powerless. Pain that runs so deep there are times we cannot fathom being able to fight it. The pain is so much a part of us we couldn’t recognize ourselves without it. Maybe we don’t even want to.

Every once in a while something will happen to stir those emotions. To remind us that just maybe there is beauty in pain and that is only by sharing the suffering that we can forgive ourselves and move a step forward.

My hope is that somebody watches this or reads the message of how it came to be and finds a tiny bit of strength to keep fighting. To sense a pinpoint of light within our dark. The description directly underneath the video is well worth reading. Able to beautifully and articulately explain what I sometimes lack the proper words to describe.

http://www.ldsdaily.com/entertainment/the-piano-guys-release-fight-songamazing-grace-mashup/