There is something odd about the world today. Seeing other people share stories much like mine. It’s odd because here you are a picture of success but your past would be no indicator of it.

You see people discussing sexual predators, molesters, pedophiles, rapists, the list goes on and on.

You’re happy that they see it now, the injustice of it all, the shock, and all you want to do is scream…”Well it’s about damn time!!!”

I guess I should be grateful that the world appears to be open to feeling compassion about the atrocities. But part of me is angry. Why now? What is different now? If it were a middle aged woman coming forward would you feel the same? Probably not, I mean it makes sense to feel the shock when it happens to a beautiful young woman or a child.

I’m with you, it’s absolutely shocking when you see young women come forward or see the pictures of children who survived or did not survive. But let me remind you that this is nothing new and it not only affects the beautiful and the young.

Can you sense the anger? The mind of a victim is a minefield. We never know what will set us off or what our reaction will be.

World..I am proud that your eyes are open. I am proud that the victims voices are being heard in life and beyond the grave. But please hear me when I say this.

You cannot begin to fathom our pain, our struggle. I appreciate your outrage in fact I support it. But know you do not know. It’s not open for debate as to how it happened. Your splitting hairs and it does not matter.

It may seem nonsensical what I am about to say. It doesn’t matter how it happened what matters is that it’s unacceptable and it’s time to unlearn what we have learned.

No longer should it matter how but when. When was it ok? When was it taught or implied that it was ok? When did you choose to look away? Raise your children, your family, your friends to know that it’s not ok.

But even more important honor the voice. Remind your children to speak out when something doesn’t feel quite right. Allow them to speak without judgement, without shock.

Teach about permission. Teach about legal consent. Share your stories, do not bury the pain, bring it to the surface. No more family secrets or guilt. Do not give someone permission to hurt others by not speaking up.

It’s all a jumble of words I’m afraid. So much pain in my heart. Do not blame the movements, do not blame anyone. Start with you and remember to stop talking about the victim and start talking about the perpetrator. Place the blame where it belongs in the actions of the individual who committed the action and go from there.

These are the words from me. A victim of molestation, of grooming, of multiple rapes, of trafficking, and so much more. I’m not an outsider to the pain I’m a survivor of the pain. I live in the unease.

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