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Family – Love Redefined…

10 Feb

When you decide to speak up about child sexual abuse, you will experience various reactions from various people. Survivors would like to believe ‘family’ will be the most supportive, but often times we experience the opposite. My experience was no different. Oprah once said “sometimes you have to divorce your family” I’m not sure who divorced whom in my case, but I knew some separation took place. On this my Journey 2 Free; I had to accept my new reality, one I’ve grown accustom to, for after all, I had to choose me, my sanity, my health and my well being over family, it was either that or the mental asylum, I choose the former. Love Redefined was written last year as a journal entry but just this past week I bore witness to the character assassination and verbal abuse of a few family and friends at the hands (and dare I say mouth) of family, because they too choose to speak of their ordeals. A new day has dawned and while ‘we’ survivors garner the strength and the courage to speak up and out, please bare in mind being judged, being called names and worst ‘being called a liar’ is seemingly apart of the speaking out process, I implore us ALL as survivors to STAND IN YOUR TRUTH regardless of what ‘they‘ may say:

Love Redefined

My family made me question, rethink and re-evaluate the definition of Love.

I use to believe we were tight, so inter-connected, a closely knit bunch, we would hang-out, be cordial, do the things expected of us to do like talk about accomplishments, about each other, and what uncle, aunty or cousin so and so was up to, we congratulate when congratulations were in order, you know, the usual things families do, then part ways, go back to our respective places, and when need arise we do it again;

 BUT

If you want to truly know how tightly knit, and who’s with, for or against you, do something like I did, and watch the family split; How dare you do something the uppities and overly self-righteous don’t agree with?!

So, I spoke up and sought justice for an injustice that span generations in the family, knowing the act was wrong, it’s not that THEY didn’t know, or understand, but no-one took action, so the injustice prolonged. Everyone has an opinion, this is true, the opinions ranged from girl go ahead do you! To WHO DARE YOU SPEAK, AND SPEAK ABOUT WHAT WAS DONE TO YOU?!  Accused of bringing shame and disgrace on the family, some dared to say I brought embarrassment on my dear old granny, but granny had a choice to make, and so did I! She choose to side with her husband, I choose to speak in hopes of saving lives.

Grandma’s husband is a pedeophile and after the lives he’s ruined, she’s still by his side yet, some family members behaved as if victims committing suicide would have been more acceptable than confronting the one performing mental genocide, murdering the self-esteems and shattering prides and forcibly taking with delight the innocences of the female babies on her side

In this family, we struggle with a chronic case of duplicity, some may say split personalities but, I call it blatant hypocrisy, this particular act stems from the matriarch of the family, yes, it rots from the head of the tree!

I would listen to grandma and some relatives speak with great delight of others while they were in their sight, but the moment their backs were turned the compliments also took flight. They are bold, saying what they need to say, but to get their way they’ve mastered their craft, learning how to manipulate, so, it comes as no surprise when this family split, and for my part I’ll gladly take ownership. I spoke up and out and yes sought justice for the injustice, while some did what they do best, pretending to be supportive of cousins, sisters, daughters while spreading propaganda to others, by now, they are well versed in spreading their unintentional lies intentionally. Hypocrisy is the name of the game, unfortunately sown and deeply rooted in some of the off springs veins, for I’ve never before seen a set more versed in knowing truth but instead, intentionally and purposefully propagate and circulate lies, yet the question remains, Why?!

Why did so many take this personally, when my issue was with the one that raped me?! Why?! They weren’t there, yet the majority felt the need to tell me how they think I should feel and the audacity to offer a timeframe of healing and recovery at their suggested speed!

Love Redefined: I’m not sure what Love means anymore, see, my family have me questioning 1 Corinthians 13 vs 4, for their love was neither patient, nor was it kind but instead crude, cruel and harmful combined. They tried to shame me into thinking I was wrong to speak, blatantly telling me, it’s attention I seek. I’ve heard this saying repeatedly, but it’s one with which I’m afraid I can’t agree that “no matter how we fuss and fight we still are family!” Unfortunately, that maybe so biologically but beside’s that fact, there’s some actions taken and some words spoken from which we can’t back!

They are ways to handle feuds and conflicts between friends and family, and that is where we all agree to disagree, Respectfully! BUT NO, Not in my family! For it’s a pissing contest to prove who’s draws is tighter than the rest, not to mention the heated war of words to see who can verbally humiliate, assassinate and pulverize the other. We send threats and beat our breasts and puff our chest and spew flames of fire, until all that’s left are the chard remains of what use to be,  We use to be…

 FAMILY

The Healing Process:

3 Jan

The healing process or The process of healing is as unique to each individual as their finger prints. We all experience and process things differently, therefore we heal differently. Do Not try to stop, block or hinder one’s process. The best you can do is be supportive and patient.

Dearest Grandma…

31 Dec

For years I was asked not to speak about being raped by my maternal grandmothers husband for the sake of protecting my grandmother. Her daughters had grown up with this fear that her husband would have killed her had THEY spoken out about him raping THEM. So, when grandma’s husband turned his gaze upon me at five (5) and began raping me at eleven (11) and even after sticking his fingers inside the body of my three year old sister, we were STILL held to secrecy for the sake of protecting Dearest Grandma from her husband.

I am the first grandchild for my grandmother, my mother her first child and after finding out in my adult years that my own mother was also raped by my grandmothers husband from ages six through sixteen (6-16) I was STILL asked NOT to speak to ‘protect my grandmother’. The level of betrayal I felt from the women in my family got to it’s tipping point when I finally broke my silence and spoke out about the years of abuse. I sought justice and there to meet me every day in court was my ‘grandmother’ who was present in full support of her ‘husband’. I cannot express or put into words what that felt like, seeing the woman that I was asked to shield, show up in defense of the man that raped my mother, myself and fondled a three year old.

After having several conversations with my ‘grandmother’ and realizing that she would have NEVER left her rapist husband’s side for the likes of her offsprings, the harsh reality set in that the matriarch of my family was and is complicit with the evil she brought home. Now, I’m just left to wonder, is that type of mental illness hereditary?!

This spoken piece was written back on February 17th of this year. It was just one of those days when the tears flowed uncontrollably when I thought about the indescribable pain of loss and betrayal I’ve had to endure for 35 long years for the sake of this woman, the woman from who’s loins I descended, the woman that looked at me and asked “can’t you find it in your heart to just get past this, it’s been so long ago?!” Now, this is the lineage from which I was birthed…

Join me as I/WE journey2free. From my heart to yours.

All rights are reserved by Larissa H. Rhone

Thanks to St. Thomas Events for their dedication to bringing this piece to life.
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Contact me:
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FICKLED

12 Oct

Until you CHANGE your thinking, you will always recycle your experiences. (anonymous)

On the days you feel most alone, those days you’re surrounded by many yet entrapped within the walls of your solitary existence are the days the repetitive acts of betrayal resurfaces forcing withdraw and isolation. Those days when emotions run wild, feeling, believing, convincing self (they) everyone, no-one can be trusted! We retreat, we fall back, retiring to that place where we feel most safe even if it’s only in our heads.

There is no time frame given on how long (we) the overcoming survivors of child sexual abuse may require to be in this head space, that space where no-one is allowed. We break down, try to process and make sense of the chaos around. It’s a secure place to be, where nothing or no-one from the outside world can infiltrate or permeate or thoughts our thinking because we look at everything and everyone sideways, everyone is a suspect just wanting, waiting, seeking that which they may devour.

Those moments when the memories emerges and self-pity dangerously toys with taking up familiar course, it’s usual residence. When anger starts to rise with seething disdain and distrust and the feeling of being robbed of your innocence and pride dances recklessly a little too close to that place where tainted belief of self resides and the not good enough anthem starts to sound the alarm.

It’s a very thin line between sanity and insanity!

A victim of child sexual abuse would know this. Everyday is a constant struggle, a mental struggle of how to act, think or feel. Do we remain in a state of victimhood? Do we continue to not trust and look at everyone wide eyed? Do we do the infamous neck pulled back (yeah right smirk) to every questionable promise or comment made? Do we let our guards down? The questions are endless…

For some of us it gets tiring! Frustration takes hold, the constant back and forth in our heads. It’s unsettling not knowing who to trust, having no confidence in our self or our abilities. Uncertain when to release, questioning, replaying, rethinking ever choice, ever decision, the internal dialogue and obsessive chit chatter never ends UNTIL, UNTIL we decide to make a change (whoosaaaah) ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

A child sexually abused that was silenced and never afforded the help or opportunity to heal now an adult would attest to the fact that there is a thin line between sanity and insanity or at least that is how I strongly feel!

 

DON’T SPEAK!

24 Sep

Each time I hear the question asked “why can’t you just get over it!” I cringe, yes my stomach churns, these three words  ‘get over it! triggers a less than pleasant response.

I’ve garnered support and established new friendships with a few ladies I will respectably refer to as ‘age-ables’, and though our chance meetings may be summed up as bittersweet, I cherish every moment I spend in their presence and cling to their every word. Our stories is what binds us, the familiarity of our ugly truths, a common theme PAIN. The pain of being taken advantaged of as little girls now adults, ‘adulting’ from a place of brokeness. These women are well into their sixties (60’s) and still carry with them the ghost of what could have been, the ash of what should have been and the stagnant remnants of a past experience that never truly decays. Forced to lock away, to hide, to suppress memories while unknowingly hiding, suppressing, loosing themselves and everything else in the process. Sixties (60’s) and still struggling, some still barely surviving, still not knowing who they are at their core, some still unable to shake off or break free the invisible restraints of family secrets and shame, yet, are still being expected and asked (why can’t you get over it?!). With each exchange, with every shared detail I’m privy to, in the voices I hear a longing, coupled with deep sadness yet masked as full fledged, totally capable, well put together and competent functioning beings. When will we get over it?! When the game playing and hypocrisy cease!

A child that has been sexually abused grows into an adult that have been sexually abused. Trapped beneath the surface is a tortured soul. A soul that is disconnected, a soul that’s in search and in need of being whole. We learn to disconnect, separating mind and body. Like functioning alcoholics we compartmentalize separating body from our feelings and are fully capable of playing the roles, meeting our demands, our responsibilities, being everything to everyone at all times with little or no regard to self and what it is WE (the tortured souls) actually needs.

When will YOU see, know or understand, there is a loss that is experienced when sexually abused as a child?! Loss of power, loss of pride, loss of dignity, a loss of truth and a true sense of who you really are, loosing an identity before even having the chance or ability to develop or create one.

I’ve become accustom to the callous, uncaring and insensitive remarks of those that have not had the experience and chooses to be closed minded, even worst are those that have had the experience but lack empathy, is void of compassion and struggles with sincerity these are the same folks that say ‘I understand but’… A victim of child sexual abuse doesn’t seek to be pitied, and unless you’ve been there we truly don’t expect you to understand! However, If you insist on asking questions from a from a place of judgement and misguidedness do us ALL a favor, DON’T SPEAK!

While on this journey of navigating unfamiliar paths and charting new courses, I honestly thought time would have healed the wounds and it will, but they cut deep!  Being made aware by the ageables that though ‘scars may appear faded on the surface they are permanently tattooed on the soul’. Some are fortunate to have received needed help, others like myself are on their way to healing while others remain loss and unfortunately will never find their way. Most painful of all, are those that have gone back to the earth with the secrets, never having the opportunity of being free. It all hurts and one things for certain, it NEVER goes away, You NEVER forget and for DAMN SURE it’s not something YOU JUST GET OVER!!! 

Yes, healing is possible but it is constant, the pursuit is never ending, the process is daunting and tedious and it takes loads of work! While on this journey… From my heart to yours…

To be continued…

 

 

I Wonder…

25 Aug

‘My father died not knowing his daughters were sexually abused as children’.

I often wonder, had my dad known I/we were sexually violated, how different would my/our life’s be? Dad passed on April 2, 2017, and I’m unsure as to why I’ve been plagued with all these ‘I wonder’ questions since.  It pains me to my core that I never had much of a  relationship with my father and though it’s much too late for the blame game or to get needed answers, I believe with every fiber of my being that had he been a better father my wounds would have not cut so deep, the scars would have healed and I would not have been plagued with the damning unworthiness I feel.

My reality, I was never a daddy’s little girl and I still suffer the rancid residue of being judged and ostracized by him. Truth is, I have convinced myself that he did the best he could with what he was given BUT, I am upset that dad didn’t consider me worthy or special enough to change his mindset, his beliefs to ensure that his little girls were loved beyond his limited perception of the value of the opposite sex. Daddy could NOT have stopped the molestation, but I know the effects would not have been as long lasting or life altering had he been a better parent.

The past few days have been emotionally draining. I spent hours trying to figure out the source of my discomfort, in an attempt to lift my spirits I listened to music, kept myself busy, attended meetings, did my usual runs but nothing seemed to work. I knew this was serious when my go to, my children, my boys usual antics didn’t work. I realized only then that no amount of avoiding, suppressing, evading or side-stepping my emotions was going to make these feelings vanish, I gave in and decided to sit with it. The cause for my uneasiness was my dad, thoughts of him swirled in my head, I miss him terribly but this wasn’t the usual ‘think of dad, sulk for a moment, shed a tear or two type momentary deal, this was deeper.

I thought about the relationship my dad and I had over the years. Dad was very much present for the formative years, besides the fact he worked extremely hard I got to see him daily, he was home every night mostly before bedtime but our relationship strained and lacked all the key components of a  great father-daughter relationship.

I am the first child (supposedly) born to my father. Dad did not hesitate to let everyone know how disappointed he was ‘because I was a girl’. Dad was from an era, a generation that viewed women as weak, worthless and disposable, he was born to an extremely sexist father that did not hesitate to verbalize his disdain towards the ‘weaker’ sex. How I wished and longed for my dad to see my worth and to consider me valuable, special and irreplaceable but unfortunately he was too broken and so damaged himself he was blind to the fact girls/women are worth far more that being barefoot, pregnant and totally dependent on men.

I often wonder, what would have been the result of my dad knowing we were taken advantage of? Knowing dads temperament, I do believe this saga would have had a very different ending. Since going public about my ordeal, one of the most frequently asked questions from folks that knew my father well is “was your dad ever told, did he know” and with each “No” the response “I figure” almost certainly follows. Folks that knew my father well (or so they thought) still believe had Mr. Rhone known about the abuse of his daughter, my sister and others after her would not have shared this horrid experience, chances are my grandmother would have been widowed some twenty something years ago.

Daddy was a licensed fire arm carrier and he was not afraid to pull his weapon, in fact, he was considered somewhat trigger happy. Dad was a responsible gun carrier but he was also known to have a short fuse, he was a no-nonsense, outspoken, no bars hold, prideful person that was also arrogant and thrived on the praise and recognition of others. Dad was well-known and highly respected within the parish of St. Thomas, his community and neighboring towns, chances are a murder would have been committed if only for the sake of saving face.

I loved my dad wholeheartedly and spent the greater part of my life seeking the approval and validation of this man. To the outside world he was a stand up guy, a man to emulate and adore. He was a hard working, determined, go-getter, family oriented (or believed to be) but the truth is, dad  had his demons to contend with and was riddled with insecurities, so much so that sexism and classism oozed from his pours and slipped oh too easily from the folds of his lips. It took me a lifetime to understand my mothers reasoning for instructing me not to tell daddy what had happened to me, because she feared he would do to me/us what he did to her by using the abuse against me/us.

My father was from a generation plagued with the belief that a woman’s worth is secondary to that of a man, that we were only created for certain things including being servants to the ‘dominant sex’. It was that hard and fast belief that led to the constant reminders that I was secondary and could not be compared to my brothers. My self worth was tarnished and tainted by my dad, a realization I came to years ago but somehow weighed heavily this week.

I wonder; if only dad had the courage to break free from the thoughts that held him captive, freeing himself from the mental slavery that kept him bound; relinquishing the belief of a superior sex. If only MY dad had been open to experience love, being willing to accept love, to see love, to feel and to be love; if only he had possessed the ability to love unconditionally like a father should love, adore, protect and  \shield his daughter, I do believe my life would have turned out different.

I would be foolish to think my dad being a better father would have somehow prevented the abuse from happening No! A pedeophile is a pedeophile and will remain a pedeophile if not helped! I do believe however, if daddy had been more of a loving, reassuring, accepting and affectionate father, had he possess the qualities of patience and understanding, had he been able to instill, reassure, nurture and cultivate a strong sense of being within me, if only he had the capacity to extend or open his heart to his daughter/s he would have been told and years of internalized anguish would have been minimized and my decimated self-esteem rebuilt.

I wonder; why dad, I can’t help but wonder why?! But, it’s too late now and though I am saddened at the fact you couldn’t see ME beyond your own hang ups and insecurities, I try to understand and will cling to the belief that you still loved ME with all that you had. Daddy, I just wish you were able to see ME…

COURT: DAY 7… A GRANDMOTHER’S BETRAYAL.

26 Mar

A Grandmother’s Betrayal… CHOOSE YOU!!!

Some days were unbearable (emotionally). Sitting across from the matriarch of the family, knowing she’s present at court not because of her daughters and granddaughters, but instead in support of her husband that sexually abused her daughters and granddaughters… Some days were tough!

Court: Day 7 This day was rather challenging (mentally) for me. The journey continues…

Women Supporting Women

5 Mar

A snippet of my talk with a group of beautiful women I was asked to address. This experience further opened my eyes to how many people are really hurting as a result of Child Sexual Abuse.  Please, let’s start talking. Another’s life may very well depend on it!  Join me as I/we journey2free.

Child on Child Abuse, Sexual Urges 2

1 Mar

A follow-up to my last video, after discovery one of my dearest friends child was sexually abused by another child. In this video I touched on parents being vigilant in protecting their children or seeking the necessary help for their children.

I also spoke about the importance of teaching young children about their Private parts and that this includes not only the penis, vagina, buttocks, breast but also the mouth as many predators are forcing young children to perform oral sex. Parents, pleas have the discussions with your child(ren).

Court. Day’s 5 & 6

26 Feb

Fighting Against Childhood Sexual Abuse

Standing up for what you believe in and seeking justice in the fight against Child Sexual Abuse seems like an unattainable feat. The challenges, and obstacles presented, the mental struggles, the emotional upheaval having to go back, to relive the memories, the flashbacks, the nightmares… Who knowingly and willingly wants to put themselves through this harsh and rather painful experience? I do and I did!

I HAD TO GO BACK TO MOVE FORWARD! I was tired and exhausted from feeling like a complete stranger in my own body. I was existing but my very existence felt foreign to me. I often felt like an intruder into my own life and body. I was robbed. I was wounded. I was broken. I got tired of living like a mere fraction trying desperately to be whole, but being or feeling whole evaded me.

I brought him (my abuser) to court after thirty (30) long years! The process was EXTREMELY trying and difficult but so worth it! As challenging and difficult as it was and despite the fact the defense attorney tried to paint an awful picture of me to make his case, the feeling of looking my abuser in the eyes (as dreadful as it was at times) I was slowly but surely taking my power back from the BASTARD that had stolen my innocence and robbed me of my self-worth, my trust, MY CHILDHOOD…

Today I stand however, determined to TAKE IT ALL BACK… Join me on this journey. #JOURNEY2FREE

Journey with me…
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Fighting Against Childhood Sexual Abuse

#ChildhoodSexualAbuse