These pictures represent a turning point in my life, age 5 (I was first molested) Age 11 (I was first raped… What do you see in this child’s eyes?
I lost my innocence to a cousin on a bedroom floor, raped repeatedly for years by my grandmothers husband and was touched inappropriately by an uncle all between the ages of 5 and 16.
For years I thought this was my plight, my ordeal was that of a personal, and isolated nature. I was awakened to his truth a short time later when, I witnessed this monster taking advantage of another family member, and I still believed this was just our tribulation, our cross to bear.
The catalyst for my speaking out began some six weeks ago, I sat down with a cousin in a candid conversation, and she confided in me, she told me a story which she had never before repeated. Ironically, (I thought why me, I even asked why, this was our first time speaking like this) though not shocking it was hard to swallow. It was one of those stories that you knew exactly where it was headed mid-way in the conversation, but you silently pray what you’re about to hear is not what you thought was about to be said. Well it was! That which I did not want to hear was indeed what I was told.
One of the perpetrators that had sexually abused me for years had violated yet another person. This compounded the guilt, the heartbreak of my past came crashing down, this, this, this thing! That seems like a winding roller coaster with no end in sight!
My cousins story was my trigger; I began re-living the whole damn nightmare again. Funny, the nightmares had never really left, not for a second! However learning about new victims evoked a reaction I can’t escape. The new information I received off-set a barrage of emotions. I had only few weeks beforehand learned the plight of another beloved relative.
It was clear that something had to be done and I was the one who had to do it, the responsibility was mine. I began experiencing this overwhelming feeling of guilt. Deep down I was angry that I had tried for many years to “out” this pervert; I tried to tell what he had been doing to me and had done to others. Each time I attempted to talk about it, I was asked by family members to be quiet.
Though I was out of the environment, I felt as if I had to comply, listen, I had to obey, though I didn’t want to, I had to carry the shame, I felt the need to remain true to my family and pretend along with everyone else. I felt like if I didn’t carry on with the charade, they would make me feel like an outcast “The Instigator.”
Our family pretended, the hypocrisy heightened with each family gathering, the tension grew with each tale of “the tight ass family unit!”
I’m sickened at the thought that while we remained tight lipped others were exposed to this trauma, yet we question why or society is all fucked up! Why our little girls and boys wander so far away from what we envisioned for them. We belittle them, degrade and bombard them with words and cliches and seemingly it’s all ok! They are viewed as bad, they are hopeless, a lost cause, insignificant, small, they are rude and disrespectful, they are sexually promiscuous, they don’t know what they want, and the never ending list goes on…
All the while if we had just stopped, listened, took notice, supported, protected, talked to, defended, instructed this could and would have played out differently! It’s time for victims to be victors and abusers brought to justice! It’s time we have a voice, and be unified in solutions! It’s time for us to be content and at peace and the tormentors tormented! Isn’t this the way it should be?
I can’t keep this charade up any longer! I feel compelled to write (right) a wrong! “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (1st Corinthians 13 vs. 11) The time has come for me to grow some balls and stand up for the greater good.
My sincerest of apologies to the victims that were after me, I tried! I wish I could go back and undo history. I know the mental anguish, the emotional suffering.
It took me a minute to wake up! I’m shedding that skin, that old life; I’m grabbing fear by the balls and doing my part! I’m doing me! To the others, please, find what works for you, if it’s speaking out and taking action… then do it! I’m taking my self-respect back join me on my/our Journey2Free.
From my heart to yours