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Respect Our Elders

Growing up in Hawaii, we were taught to call our elders “Auntie” or “Uncle” if they were a friend of the family. I was about 8 or 9 years old and I remember being at my grandfathers house on a school day. I stayed home from school for some reason and stayed at my grandfathers house. I only recall my grandfather and two uncles were home at that time. One of them was my grandfather’s brother and the other one was my grandmother’s friend. The one uncle (who was my grandmothers friend) called me into the bathroom. I remember questioning myself, “Why?” (My grandfather and the other uncle were outside on the front porch.) I was nervous and didn’t want to listen. He insisted and being so naive and very confused, I listened because I didn’t want to get into trouble.

I remember he took out his private and started rubbing it on me and wanted me to hold it. I don’t recall him doing anything else. I somehow got out of there and I couldn’t wait until my parents picked me up after work. I felt really weird and I didn’t tell anyone. After that incident, I wished him to die everyday. He passed away a few years later. I felt so lifted when he passed and safe again around my family again. It killed me every time my mother told me to put flowers on his grave. I didn’t share with anyone about my experience until I was a senior in high school. I never got married but had 8 children from 3 relationships. All three relationships were abusive physically, mentally and psychologically. It took its toll on me. I pretty much raised my children as a single parent. I even attended a class ordered by family court when I put restraining order on one of their fathers. I learned that I was a women who loved too much. Yes, I did and forgot to love me because I was a good person.

I’ve been single for many years by choice. Whether that childhood experience has anything to do with the choices I made with men, I’ll never know. So much for respecting our elders and listening to them.

I’m very blessed with my large family. My eldest son is my guardian angel from heaven and my other children shower me with their love in their own unique way. I’m also a grandmother with 4 granddaughters and 3 grandsons.

I have come this far in life and the paise goes to God. Without him. I would not be as strong as I am today.

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