Would not wish this battle of happiness on anyone……

 

Many times when we are left broken by the actions of those we love, we seem to get lost in the pain of it all. There are days when we wake with a huge weight of memories that challenge our ability to smile and keep on going.

“After all, isn’t this what the general society expects of us all? So what, you were beaten, bullied, molested, raped, threatened, controlled; who cares, RIGHT? They say things like; ‘Get on with life’ or ‘So what it’s only sex, you do it all the time. What’s the problem?”

Let me share with you what the ‘PROBLEM’ might be. How about if you close your eyes for about 5 minutes and pretend you are a child; remember the light spirit of catching fireflies in a jar. Then I would like for you to imagine your father (just using the pseudonym as an example); your father’s hands are touching you and suddenly through a quick flash of memory he is on top of you and you feel a burning pain rip through you like a red fury of fire. You hold your breath and turn your head. He’s grunting and telling you what a good child you are and how this is something that is supposed to be done.

All you can think of is how much it hurts!!! You want it to be over, you want him to quit. You have tried to tell your mom, but she simply turns away and ignores your words. You show your dysfunction brought on by the violation of it all; sometimes it comes out in rocked emotions other times through our reactions and actions as we go through life. You’re not allowed to share this ugly secret and you try to figure out why it makes you feel so worthless and ugly. You know that others won’t understand and your friends at school talk about sex like it is just something you do.

“Are they having sex with their parent too? Do they get beat up when the dishes aren’t clean, the laundry’s mess, or just because (HE) is drunk and angry? Do they feel like they don’t matter to anyone at all?”

As you grow up you carry all of this baggage with you. There can be many ‘PROBLEMS’ that you start to see. You may be falling in love with everyone or no one. You may look in the mirror and think about how disgusting you are, or that no one wants you, or no one ever treats you like a decent human being. You stress out easily at work because you have to make sure everything is done with perfection. Sometimes, if you are using an addiction such as alcohol, marijuana, or even food to help get through those shattering moments; you may have problems with being sober at work or high. You may sit at home all by your lonesome and drink or eat until you just can’t drink or eat any longer. You may try to be active in other things, such as taking care of your kids, your family, keeping up with friends, and believe it or not you may even find yourself clinging to your parents, or even the one who violated you. You feel like you need these connections because you want to be loved; to be wanted, appreciated for the good in you, but no matter how hard you try sometimes you just can’t make it through the day without a break down.

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Artwork via: Michal Madison Art

http://www.michalmadisonart.com

Each morning is a new challenge for you. When your eyes open you find yourself once again back in the circle of LIFE AFTER ABUSE!!! It’s ugly as hell and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone at all. It’s not nice to wake up without a smile for the one you love lying next to you. It’s not nice to be sad all the time and worried about how people will see you ‘Will they see past your veil of secrets?’

We all have some form of burden or trouble we carry sometimes, but the brutal acts and personally violating evils of these crimes is something so deep and so troublesome that even our therapists, support groups, family & friends have difficulty accepting our struggle, understanding the impacts of PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Doubt, Constant Fear of Rejection, the need for Perfection so intense that we don’t have time to enjoy those quiet times of sunshine and flowers or the belly laughter of our children.

We can only hope to help the survivors of these acts when we accept these abuses happened within our homes; the place where we should feel SAFE from the dangers of the world can often be the MOST DANGEROUS.

Remember there are many homes where one parent is not as dangerous as the other. Maybe that other parent doesn’t hear our silent screams for rescue, but maybe they don’t beat and hold you captive. Also there is the ugly truth that these processes of acceptance and silence move forward from one generation in our circle of life to another. Then these acts (CRIMINAL ACTS) are done by the person we marry, the person we choose to have as our lover, friend, companion; the person we share the intimacy with on a regular basis. We believe we can depend on this person to help us through, but instead (especially single moms who have been harmed as children) we continue to fall into the whirlwind romances and find ourselves living with what we have been taught is so ‘NORMAL’ to us. Something we know doesn’t happen in every household, but it definitely happens a lot and for some reason it seems to always happen to us. Those who live in misguided boundaries and beliefs all because of the daily, weekly, decades of brutality and degradation, personal violation and threat to our lives as our everyday perception of life.

You will find us then trying to cope with all of the horrific truths we carry.

How would you get through your day as a Survivor on the path to Freedom from Abuse?

© Patricia A. McKnight

Author/Advocate/Speaker/Talk Radio Prod & Host/Survivor

Founder; Butterfly Dreams Abuse Recovery & Talk Radio Programming

http://www.butterflydreamsabuserecovery.com

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/butterflydreamsabuserecovery

Author: ‘My Justice’

Available through most online book resources!! Bookcvr1

 

Please tell me why this is not a crucial point of attention!

Child Abuse Prevention & Sexual Assault Awareness

So I’m a bit angry; why you might ask?

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There is actually a couple of answers to this question.

1) Another year has come and gone in which not a single politician or lawmaker who has the power to call attention to the ongoing Child Abuse and Family Violence within our society has been willing to make it a public issue.

2) April is upon us and although there are many great events planned throughout this special month, the problem I have comes down to this;

Why in the hell do we not honor Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month with their own specific month?

This is a topic I briefly addressed last night on Butterfly Dreams Abuse Recovery Talk Radio and one I will share more with you today.

You see it bothers me that we don’t feel these two issues are worthy of having their own special month, so we join them together and address the issue as a whole rather than in the honor they so very much deserve.

As a survivor of both very horrific child physical, emotional, neglectful, and sexual abuse, which also included exploitation and trafficking within my own small hometown community; I’m also a RAPE SURVIVOR!! (Of course there are also the 20 years spent living in almost deadly relationship violence in my lifetime as well)

In our society we have problems talking about the crimes of family violence, child sexual abuse, molestation and the like. For some reason it is something we still consciously choose to keep in the dark; whisper about but don’t accept publicly. This is an outrage because of the millions, estimated at some 40 to 60 million, who are survivors now living and struggling with the aftermath and trying to be accepted in society. However, to be accepted we must not speak of what’s happened in our past. We mustn’t discuss the dark family secrets simply because of the shame it could bring to the family dynasty. REALLY?

How good are the morals of that so called dynasty if we are raping and beating; torturing our children? What is the quality of mankind’s decency if we are forcing survivors of these most vicious and heinous acts to remain silent and fear public and family abandonment? Why is it still so the norm to put the blame of these acts against children who could not defend themselves nor run from their attacker?

These same ugly secrets and fears apply to those who have been raped as adults. However, I will say the response to admitting you are a rape victim is a bit more tender than that of a childhood rape survivor. I truly do not understand this on any level!!!

Our society and our justice system has shown that we still blame the rape victim, no matter how old they are. This was seen just recently in the Steubenville, Ohio rape trial. However, as we’ve also seen, the community has rallied around the victim and let her know she is not in this alone. We are outraged by the minimal sentencing of these perpetrators and the lack of prosecuting those who witnessed, recorded, and posted pictures and discussions about the young men carrying this victim because she was too drunk to walk. We are talking to our kids about the right and wrong of this and I’ve seen many great articles and blogs written from various survivors and others.

Please do not take me wrong, I am most definitely 100% behind the victims whose cases of gang rape and various other attacks have come to our public attention lately. Thank goodness we are beginning to rally behind them rather than turn away.

I ask you though;

What in the hell is so different about these cases of rape we’ve heard about lately and those who are coming forward about the childhood filled with years of brutal attacks of rape, trafficking, and truly physical torture beyond the darkest of imagination?

Also, permit me to add, we rally behind and acknowledge the many long term issues of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, Anxiety and more which our war heroes and the recent public rape victims are left to carry. There are continuously more and more psychologists and others with organizations such as National Institute of Mental Health and our Center for Disease Control and Prevention who have conducted studies on the after effects of both war and sexual assault. These studies have concluded that the trauma of both of these life threatening personal situations and attacks leave the same lasting emotional scars.

On this note;

How do you think these lasting effects of trauma and life threatening attacks impact the lives of the many childhood rape survivors today? What is the big difference between supporting and gathering our voices for the war heroes and veterans, the recent rape victims and others, verses the many millions of child rape and abuse survivors who are still forced to hide in the shadows of our society? How is this right on any level of our decency?

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The day will come when we can begin to change the acts of abuse and violence within our homes. It will become a force to be reckoned with as we begin to support those who are sharing their stories today. The problem however, is that it’s not happening fast enough for the many millions of children who are living in the hell now!! The recent collection of Child Maltreatment Reports from the nationwide Child Protective Services; shows a grand total of 3,734,012 reports of child abuses reported in 2011. This is just one year. The Federal Children’s Bureau is presently looking at reports collected from 2007 through 2011 to update our present statistics shared, which were collected and officially reported in 1996.

If we cannot recognize the very importance of this issue and address it head on as a joined and united society, then what are we passing on to our children? Are we showing them we care and want them to have the best if we still are not willing to acknowledge the severity of the issues and how prevalent the acts of abuse and violence truly are in the homes around us?

I understand that by acknowledging the voices from the past we have to accept what we may have witnessed and allowed to exist. We have to accept that some of mankind’s darkest attacks on others happen within our own homes or within those homes of our neighbors. We have to accept that we may have heard the screams for mercy or the horrific cries of a child and did nothing. We have to accept that mothers and fathers, brothers, sisters and close family friends have all seen or been party to these heinous acts, but stood by and did nothing for these children. It’s a lot to accept and I get that, truly I do. I am one of those many who had an entire community, school system, law enforcement, family friends, school mates and others who all witnessed, took part in, or knew of the many attacks from my stepfather. They also watched as I physically rotted away in the disfiguring neglect because of my mother’s lack of even the slightest of human kindness or caring for this one specific daughter.

It’s an ugly situation we are faced with, but we must absolutely act on it now. This month of April; this dedicated month for Sexual Assault Awareness and Child Abuse Prevention cannot be another dismissed month without the attention of our politicians, lawmakers, and those in our society with the power to change our laws and create a stronger united front of education and prevention on these issues. Those who have the power to rescue our kids. Those in our communities who know these families living in this type of hell and do nothing;

child screaming help me

WE ABSOLUTELY NEED EVERYONE ON THIS NOW!!! OUR CHILDREN LIVES, THEIR FUTURE, THEIR WELL BEING, THEIR HOPE FOR LIVING SAFE IN THIS WORLD; ABSOLUTELY DEPENDS ON US ACCEPTING ALL OF THESE UGLY TRUTHS AND RALLYING BEHIND THE MANY VOICES SPEAKING TO EDUCATE AND ELIGHTEN US ON THE HELL OF BEING ONE OF THESE CHILDHOOD NIGHTMARE SURVIVORS!!

If we continue to wear our blinders and pretend not to notice how many are being harmed every single moment of every single day, then we will never be able to stop this horrific man-made cancer that is eating away at the very soul of our existence as a human race. It is crucial that the topic of child abuse and family violence become a common discussion and one that we all are willing to address. It is no longer about what has happened to so many of us or how ugly these acts are, but more instead about how we can learn to be aware of these truths, support these victims and survivors, help provide resources and recovery systems for families and victims, as well to speak to each and every school system and child about the voice they have and how to use it to protect someone they feel is in danger of an attack within their own home.

It is a horrible truth to accept and discuss, but what is the outcome if we continue on the path we are today? Simply put, it will continue. Sure we are a society that is slowly becoming more vigilant about what we see and hear around us, but we are nowhere near where we should be on this issue. What is so damn difficult about this? Why don’t our politicians and lawmakers address this in their speeches and their election platforms?

Why is it so taboo to say: I am a childhood rape survivor?

Isn’t the nurturing and overall safety of our children an issue that all of us in society can rally around today? Tell me please what is the difference between understanding the danger within our homes, supporting those who have gone through decades of self destructive and sometimes suicidal endings; when will we be strong enough to accept our faults, push aside our generational teachings of silence, and finally step up to the plate to defend each and every child from the evil that lurks within their home?

As much as I hope this write up catches the attention of every human being, it is simply my prayer that we will learn to accept what’s happened in our past and use it as an education towards what we need to end in their future!!!

Please do something now and make the issue of child abuse and family violence prevention a topic which all of us can share over a cup of coffee or during lunch with a friend. We can do this and teach our kids there is no shame in being an abuse survivor. Instead, there is hope and great courage in using your voice to speak out and seek help!!

Thank you for reading and I do hope you’ll share!!

© Patricia A. McKnight

Author: ‘My Justice’

Advocate/Speaker/Talk Radio Prod. & Host/Survivor

Founder: Butterfly Dreams Abuse Recovery

http://www.butterflydreamsabuserecovery.com

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/butterflydreamsabuserecovery

http://www.facebook.com/triciagirl62

Artwork courtesy of: Michal Madison Art

http://www.michalmadisonart.com