A Message About Abuse
In the past few days I've read stories that have pushed my triggers. It's time to stand up. If you are an abuser of any kind but particularly a child abuser I'm watching for you...I will report you...I will testify against you.
I don't know what kind of cruel background you were forced to live in. I'm not walking in your shoes..but I'm begging you get help now. If in your quiet moments you feel regret...or some part of you loathes what it is you do...then get help now. I don't know you but I've seen what you have done.
For several years I worked as a clinician for survivors of crime....not victims but survivors. All types of crime but much of it was sexual, physical and emotional abuse. 60% of my caseload were children from 2 years to 18 years.
How many ice cream cones does it take to erase the tarnish of your hand. There aren't enough ice cream cones in existence. I've been to the Emergency Room at 3:00 AM for a 4 year old boy molested by his Mom's boyfriend. I've stood in the lobby with his 3 uncles pacing the floor, ready to explode...wanting vengeance. I felt their rage and mine but it was my job to help difuse it...take them for coffee in the hospital cafe.
I talked with the Mom as she told me she didn't know...then averted her eyes..then admitted maybe she had " a "suspician". Listened to her say she couldn't do anything because she "loved" the abuser. What about loving her son?
I know I'm not in your shoes...but if this story strikes a chord with you. If your daughter..or son comes to you, please do not turn away from them. Please do not say they are "crazy", or "a flirt", or "deserve" it...Do not tell them they are "liars" because of your own needs or fears. If you are scared...if you yourself are being abused...please get help. Don't antogonize the abuser...don't tell him you are going to leave him...do it quietly. Make phone calls to domestic violence shelters...contact the police. ..get support. Keep your children and yourself safe.
There is hope. I have seen women who have stood up. They have saved their families...and themselves Take that first step. Now. Just do it. If you don't people like me will be seeing your children. And their spirits may be broken. You can spare them from further pain.
If you are a neighbor, a friend, anyone who see but turns away, not wanting to get involved. You are involved. It's time to stand up. Most likely you can do it anonymously. There are hot lines to call. Investigations will follow. Stay silent and you become part of it. I may sound harsh...but I have seen what happens when no one stands up. I have seen these kids, some tortured and broken, thinking it was all their fault...so confused because they love "Daddy" or whoever and don't want to lose what they feel is love.
I will not work in this field again. I felt I was swimming in a cesspool...had repeated dreams of washing in the ocean...that I'd never be clean again.
If you are living with this abuse tell someone...contact a hot line...tell a counselor...go to the police. ..take some action...do not tell your abuser that you are going to get help. Keep this a secret until you are safe.
This is not your fault. There are people who want to help you. Reach out and get that help. This story is for all types of abuse...elder, animal, women, men...but mostly children.
You know who you are. If this story hits home with you, don't turn away and say...later. Please, do it now.
I will not write about this again. I want to write about kinder things. But when I read some other stories, I knew it was my turn to stand up.