A human society creating Victims and Offenders……

Often trying to assist victims of trafficking and other dangerous crimes, we find they don’t always see how serious the harm. For them it is something they just always had to tolerate in order to survive, so as a result by the time they are older teens or adults, they might not even feel it was an actual crime. I know because it happened to me.

The first time he took me out to another location I was about 10 years old and it was a tugboat down around the Baldwin Illinois area. He used to take me with him quite often, something I couldn’t refuse without punishment and something my mother never questioned regardless of what condition I returned home. He picked up a 12pack of Pabst and we took off driving, him feeding me all but three of the beers which he drank. Needless to say I was wasted. I don’t remember everything, but I sadly remember all the hands, the touching, groping, and oral sex I was made to perform on at least one of the men. They lit up a joint and took full advantage of having the intoxicated little girl to play with for their (and his) amusement.

Next it was the bar where my mother worked & all the local coal miners hung out. I was 11 years old when my stepfather involved me in very public exploitative measures so men would buy him beer and he could watch as they all flirted and played with me. He offered the one young man time alone with me outside, thankfully the guy responded ‘She’s just a kid’. However it set off a rage of fury when we immediately left and I was beaten in the car because ‘You’re just too ugly, that’s why nobody wants to be with you.’ My head was bashed against the window a few times, on the dashboard, and his hands clenched around my throat.

Surprisingly my mother came walking up and pulled me out of the car. She didn’t ask why I was crying, or what had happened; she simply hustled me home angry and screaming at me for getting drunk. It was all my fault those men wanted to do things and Malcolm was beating the crap out of me.

This was just the beginning of what would be the next five years of private parties initiated by him with neighborhood boys, schoolmates, and grown men who came to our house on late Friday night. It was all so ‘normal’ for me. It’s what I had been beaten into tolerating and no one was doing anything to stop it. The boys and men always laughed and enjoyed it, my mother stayed in her bedroom and watched tv or she took off for the weekend and left me there.

In all honesty, I had never considered myself a ‘trafficked child’. I didn’t understand how everything that happened and all the ways that I was used, manipulated, and forced into these situations created such a mess and it trained my behavior to be exactly what he wanted; his own personal little prostitute. Sadly by the time I was around 13, that is exactly what the community talked about when they saw me.
How in the world was I supposed to understand exactly how wrong it was when no one was doing anything about it?

The community members whispered about it and how I messed around with their husbands, boyfriends, and sons. They whispered about the filth that covered my body, the body odor, the infected sores, and how I rarely ever had time allowed out of the house because there was always something I had to take care of, or there might be something or someone who needed me to do something. I was the girl their daughters could not hang out with and the girl their sons were never allowed to date. I’ll never forget how it felt growing up in the center of that small Illinois town while neighbors, family friends, teachers, and classmates all made fun of me and shamed me, but not a single person ever tried to help me. In the end the only way I knew how to get through a day without being beaten was to do whatever was ordered, whenever it was ordered, and with whomever was next in line.

It wasn’t until after I started really focusing on coping through my Complex PTSD, and the debilitating injuries from all the physical trauma which existed for some 20 years in my adult relationships. I couldn’t figure out what it was about me, why did all of this stuff happen and why didn’t anyone seem to care? This is when I began writing ‘My Justice’; hoping to put all my pieces back together and help my kids understand that their screwed up ideas about relationships had resulted from how I had been so well trained to tolerate extreme harm and never believe that I deserved anything different. I was almost 50 years old before I was able to connect the dots of trauma, to my lasting wounds today. It was after the book was published and I took a training seminar on trafficking before I realized ‘OMG, that was me’.

Helping victims of Family Crimes, whether it be extreme physical violence, sexual harm, or perhaps even trafficking; these persons do not always understand that they were victims at all. To them, to me, it was just survival. I had to do whatever was demanded and I developed survival coping skills in that horror. This is what happens when we dismiss the possibility or even witnessed exploitation or direct harm of a child.

In trying to help someone cope today, we must have compassion for the emotional instability, remember they are just beginning to realize exactly how much evil they had to endure just to survive. Almost all of the adult & teen prostitutes today, first became victims as a young child. To them their body is nothing more than a sexual object, one built to satisfy others and to endure whatever they might inflict.

Helping victims of Family Related Offenders is a difficult situation because we teach them quite young to be quiet, stop crying about it, it’s nothing, it’s because you did something, it’s because we need the financial help, it’s because we need a roof over our head, it’s your burden to carry those very ugly secrets and never tell anyone about what happens here.

How many more victims of trafficking, grievous injury, emotional trauma, and lasting mental health challenges will our human society continue to raise as we turn our backs and pretend nothing happened, or convince ourselves that it’s not our problem. If you know about a family or person in harm’s way, then it just became your problem. If you don’t get that person help, who will? It’s time to stop raising Victims & Offenders, it’s time to initiate intervention and community involvement to stop ALL crime, even the generational teaching of tolerance about crime inside our family.

Keep in mind that it’s not just the children who are forced or manipulated into multiple sexual interactions or forced to stay quiet as they are beaten beyond recognition. These actions against persons inside our homes affects all races, genders, and most importantly ALL AGES. There are no boundaries when it comes to inflicting harm on those who do not understand or are not able to defend themselves.

We must defend a persons right to be protected regardless of who they are or where they live. Home doesn’t have to be perfect, but it absolutely must be SAFE. To provide any change is going to take a strong united human effort. Ending the harm inside our families, means that we give our children a better, safer world to flourish in their dreams and achievements. Teaching that all beings deserve safety, that we have worldwide laws & constitutional laws defending our right to be safe. This should be taught in every basic history class across the country.

Give a child the gift of freedom without the fear of grievous harm, especially inside their home.
Using information & resources shared on www.butterflydreamsabuserecovery is just one possible source of help. There are resources around the world to aid in this recovery process and life skills development for healthy parenting. If you or someone you know is in distress or being harmed, please research available resources in your area.

 

Thanks & be a blessing to those in your life’s path

Trish McKnight

Author: ‘My Justice’

Butterfly Dreams Abuse Recovery & Talk Radio Network

Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Specialist

Family Violence Speaker & Educator

Family Crimes and Terroristic Abuse Act – ‘Trecia’s Law’

Published by @ButterflyTrish

I am a survivor of over thirty years trapped inside the silence and brutality of Family Crimes, Child Sex Trafficking, and a life lived pattern of tolerance for over 30 years in almost murderous relationships. In Feb. 2011 I chose to publish the truth about what happened in our home, the community around me, and the learned patterns of self-hatred and tolerance which became such a huge factor in my life. My life today was built through publishing 'My Justice'. I never would felt worthy of life, breathing, love & respect with first healing myself. There were many things the traits and tragedies that influenced my life seemed to control everything inside me and it was nothing but sadness and fake emotions. Only by facing the horrors I went through, the choices I made as a woman & mother, then relating to the greatest guilt I have; how the trauma behavior has affected my children's lives. It's my hope to help others get through their battles, regardless of the type of trauma because when we hurt our lives are forever changed. This graphic, violent memoir is NOT SUGGESTED FOR ANYONE UNDER 14 years of age. It discusses the permanently wounding life and the cycle of destruction that held me in expecting/tolerating ridicule and violence in my adult relationships. This truth was published to inspire others to take an in-depth look at their life and behaviors as a result of their past. Connect the dots of your rebuilding in understanding the pattern of adult choices in coping addictions, parenting, and partners; even affecting our careers and self-sustainable life. I'm so honored to have 'My Justice' used at the collegiate level for psychology classes, upcoming therapists and educators. Today my life is very blessed. I'm finally safe, finally truly loved, finally feeling the magic of what life is supposed to be like. My greatest power only began to show when I first made the choice to end the violent relationships and behaviors around my children; to give them something better, something SAFE!! In choosing to share my own story, I've also gone that serious extra step to educate myself through years of research, attending training opportunity, and collaborating with other advocate resources, abuse, sexual harm, and the experts digging deep to recreate help and healing. I've chosen to use my past as a way to inspire a greater good; hopefully somehow change the cycle of tragedy in our homes so that we empower our kids to live a more positive path. The best education we can give, is a survivor of traumatic experiences who can use what they felt then and what they wish they would have had available; those who could have and should have said something. We can change things for our life today, but best of all in healing our wounds, we give communities a supportive working strategy in assisting the people in our lives. One step at a time, one caring soul at a time, we can give them a path to changing our human society as a whole. This is a tell all, which was written in the midst of my third nervous breakdown as I struggled to put all my distorted pieces back together, help my children understand how the violence I tolerated against me invaded their emotional well-being. My children have always been my world, but my behaviors, lack of healthy parenting and life skills, and an inability to remain stable has caused another generation of suffering for my grandchildren. This is a very difficult thing to watch and the continued tragedies that seem to keep affecting the choices in my family. Writing this book was only the beginning of trying to release all that has haunted me for so many years. I have finally removed his thick, cruel, coal stained hand which trapped me in fear for decades. Those hands and his evil, her housemaid and caregiver; they created a slave and that slave submitted to horrific and brutal attacks but always felt it was her burden to bare. I lived with that hand holding me down to terrorize and steal away my voice, holding me captive in the dysfunction of the aftermath and casting a shadow of darkness on everything good in my life. Living in the true spirit of freedom, I have now become a strong advocate against the life cycle of human destruction. We cannot live stuck in the tragedy of hardships and pain. Life is meant to be lived, to be enjoyed, to see what you can do and what you can achieve, to find out what is important to you. We all become adults. We all have a burden to bare. Stand up and keep moving, keep living, keep dreaming. You have two choices in recreating and rebuilding yourself. Do you stay stuck in the dark shadows of your past? Do you dig deep and find that spirit that kept you alive so that you could become the proud, strong, capable, resilient, kind human being ? Which do you choose and how will that choice affect your children and theirs? We can be supportive, provide resources and suggestions for help so that families suffering with addiction or past trauma themselves can find a recovery balance to rebuild their family in a more positive life pattern. We will recover, we will rebuild, we will conquer the pains of yesterday to live in the true sense of life, freedom and safety today. Patricia 'Trish' McKnight Author: 'My Justice' Fndr/CEO: Butterfly Dreams Alliance, NFP Mentor/Advocate/Speaker/Survivor

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