Being transparent allows others to see themselves inside of you. That is comforting. – Jeff Nagle
There are no right ways to being a survivor of sexual abuse, but in many people’s opinions, there is a multitude of wrong ways. Some say that substance abuse and alcohol addiction are the wrong ways to cope. Trying anything to get away from the thoughts and feelings from the aftermath of such a traumatic event can consume even the most solid person. The poisons we have access to in our lives can give those who suffer, a temporary reprieve. Even that brief escape gets us through some very tough days. While I consider myself very fortunate that I had never gone the route of substance abuse, I do however have my own escapes; being transparent and open about my abuse.
Ever since I had exposed my secret nearly 7 years ago, I have been craving the high I get from talking openly about my abuse. It is my freedom. I have held this inside for over two decades and up until the day I told my wife, I thought I was content to just keep it balled up inside. I knew at the time that it was not healthy to do that, but it was better than disturbing the peace. Some may say that I crave the attention or I am not letting go, I say, screw them! I would far be happier talking about how I became the next Wayne Gretzky or the next dot.com billionaire. I am not proud of what happened to me, but I am proud of how I have survived it. So if I make you uncomfortable with my lack of silence, I am sorry to hear that.
It is my belief that you cannot be a not a survivor until you can come out with your story and seek the freedom from hiding in the shadows. Each time you flashback to those past events you are in effect victimizing yourself over and over again. It is a terrible cycle but one that many people can never break. When you finally come to grips with your story and tell the world -while never easy to do- it does make it easier to heal and to move on.
How I have gone about my healing doesn’t sit well with some people but I could care less. I have been told that I am a shaming my family name. I have been told that I should just be quiet and “talk this out” in private as an attempt to protect the abuser. I say “fuck that”! I am transparent, this is how I roll. I have not intended this to be my plan all along, it just happened to be the way I heal. I had wanted to wait for my day in court before coming out to the world with my story, but now it seems that is a distant pipe dream. While my case sits within the system, lost in a pile of papers somewhere on a bureaucratic desk; I refuse to allow that system to prevent me from healing. This is my life, I am in control, this is my time! I will not wait any more years, months or days to heal completely. Today is the only day I have.
Am I doing this right? Not sure if it is in some people’s eyes. But to me, it is the only way.
2 thoughts on “Am I Doing This Right?”
You’re an inspiration to many people–survivors, mostly. You bring hope and assurance that it is okay, and in fact encouraged, to talk about one’s abuse. I was raised in a fundamentalist Christian home where I was told I was not allowed to talk about my trauma until I was fully healed. This post, as well as other indicators within my own mind and outward, have led me to believe that it is just about time to share my story. Thank you.
Wow, this is an incredibly powerful post. Thank you! It amazes me how the belief of being not allowed to talk about your past until you are healed makes any lick of sense. I wish you great strength in sharing your story whenever you are ready. You will find that the more you share it, the more healed you will become. Have a great day!