It’s funny how life can be so happy and carefree one minute and change drastically in the next. Many of you know that I was sexually abused as a child and that I am now, fourteen years later, finally doing something about it. I’ve been doing really well in the last few weeks, I’ve been strong and able to live my life as if everything were normal. But today a friend asked me how the court thing was going and I didn’t know how to respond. I somehow managed to say something like I was at peace and that I had actually been able to pray for my molester this week but that I didn’t know how this was going to turn out yet. She asked more questions and the more she asked, the more uncomfortable I became. I just wanted to get out of that café and away from her. I thought that I was handling this well, I thought I had gotten stronger than this. But guess what? I’m sitting in my room crying.
Darling, it kills me to see what you’re going through… I’m praying for you, praying that you’ll find peace.Don’t ever blame yourself, ever. It was not your fault. Sexual abusers use kids, because they know they won’t fight. They are selfish people. You didn’t do anything wrong. You were hurt, and it still hurts, but there is hope, you can find healing! There are guys out there who don’t want to rape you. There are guys out there who want nothing more than to protect you. I hope that someday you let yourself believe that. It took me a long time, but I finally can, and now I’ve found someone who loves me. And you can too! There is always hope!
because at one time or another, it will happen. The real promise is that the
time you spend together will be worth all the pain in the end.”
This summer I moved back to my little tight-knit Mennonite hometown. I had been away at school in a different province and got to see a very different outlook on life. In college my friends and I were pretty open with each other and the community really helped me to grow, in my faith, and in and of myself. When something bad happened we helped each other get through it. We talked about things. Then I came back here. Where the people have this code of silence. Whenever something bad happens, it isn't taken care of, it is just pushed under the rug and people pretend it never happened.
For example, where I work, one of the employees was hit by the supervisor, it wasn't hard, and it was sort of as a joke. But he hit her. She was shocked and really didn't know what to do, but when she asked a mentor what to do their advice left her feeling even more confused. They said to not do anything, to stop being so friendly and flirting and then he would leave her alone. So her answer was to keep quiet. Because she shouldn't make waves; it would cause too much trouble for too many people. So this girl kept quiet and for quite sometime after that, any time he would come near her she would flinch or get scared.
This is only one of many examples I could tell you about. I have family members who have been abused, physically or sexually, and while they have told me, I've been sworn to secrecy. I'm tired of this. I am tired of the silence. There is no healing in it. Things need to be talked about so people can move on.
If you are under this code of silence, break it. If something bad has happened to you, if someone has hurt you - you need to tell someone. You need to find healing from the pain, and you cannot do that on your own. You are not alone, the Bible tells us there is not a single thing that you have gone through that someone else hasn't. Come out in the open about things that are hurting you - it will make life so much better in the end. I won't lie, for a time it may make things worse, the memories will become fresh once again and you may experience the hurt once again for sometime. But it will get better. I promise!
I have had to recently apply this to my own life. For years I have carried the pain and sorrow of sexual abuse by myself, but I have found that there is healing in sharing it. These things that crippled me before are slowly beginning to become the things that will bring others healing. Take my advice, don't stay silent. It will only continue to hurt you.