My abuse started when I was ten years old, the abuse lasted for five years. I was raped seven times and molested countless times. Countless people had the power to step in and help or stop the abuse and no one had the courage to stand up for me.
If you have not been where I have you will never understand how it feels to be bear-hugged by a monster in your head who shows up whenever the fuck he wants. When a smell or sound or certain spice in food takes you back to a moment that you desperately want to forget. If you can’t stand garlic because it was the smell on the tormentor’s breath, you are not alone. I have the same fire burning in my heart, and a lion inside me. If you get jolted from reality at any moment, listen to the little girl screaming for comfort, calm that little girl inside you, she did’nt have anyone then but she does now, and you are stronger than every man or woman who has ever failed you. If you don’t fully understand that’s ok,I hope you never do, but im afraid that to many of you know exactly how I feel. Way too many children are having their childhood snatched away by those who should protect, and guide them.
Finding the courage to tell someone is like trying to climb out of a deep dark well that someone threw you into and covered, leaving you helpless and hopeless. It is clawing your way towards the sunlight even though everyone who should have protected you ran away from the well instead of towards it. They chose the abusers over you.
Sometimes we do tell, and tell, and tell. We tell our grandmothers, our aunts, mothers, fathers, and we silently scream to our teachers. We tell through our actions, through failed classes, losing focus, staring into space, drinking, withdrawing, or cutting, through questioning authority and severe anger. Our signs and cries for help go unnoticed or ignored, or purposely silenced by our “family”
When they tell you to forgive and forget or say they are “still family” or ask are you ever going to let this go? When mothers choose her daughters’ abusers it is soul-crushing. My mother told me I could not ask her to choose me over them, she tried to make my children resent me for not letting my daughters around my mothers sister who persuaded me to be molested and raped by both of her husbands and her mother who lives next door to and shuttles around and spends every single day with those who raped me for a five year span of time. The same grandmother I told about the abuse and her response was ok don’t tell anyone else yet I will take care of it. By not speaking out we are punishing ourselves with nightmares, flashbacks, depression and anxiety, or even migraines. This is not our burden to bear. It is not our fault, we did not ask for it nor did we deserve it. We can either drown in the past or we can choose to see the rainbow after the storm. This world is still beautiful if you choose to see it that way. Don’t lose yourself in misery, and don’t hold it in because no matter how hard you try it seeps through the cracks in our broken selves a little at a time. It becomes a bear locked in a birdcage bursting at the seems being poked with an arrow by the abusers themselves taking up space in your mind.
You can go on; you can follow your dreams, you can find great love, you can be happy, you can have a family. You have been given unimaginable strength, use it. You can raise children. YOU CAN CHOOSE WHO YOU ALLOW INTO YOUR LIFE. You can buy a house and build a life because you are a fighter, we are survivors. We are all broken, but just because something is broken doesn’t mean we have to through it away. What if it’s even more beautiful once it’s put back together?
— Brittney, age 29