If a deeply wounded and bleeding person stood in front of you, would you ask them to stop bleeding on your carpet?
Of course not! You’d call them an ambulance.
Why is it then, that people expect people who are hurt on the inside to stop being annoyingly in pain?
After I confessed that I was molested. I was told that I needed to “Get over it already.” While standing outside a wedding learning that my molestor was also attending the home ceremony. See, to their mind it had happened years ago. Why was I still bleeding on their carpet?
I was molested when I was 8. I confessed to the abuse at 14 when my mother asked me why I was soo fat. I wrote my biggest secret down on paper, and gave it to her. I explained that gaining weight was my way of protecting myself from him. Since my family didn’t know what he did to me and kept visiting him regularly, I thought if I was fat he’d not like me anymore.
My mother’s response was to call my dad and scream at him over the phone about who’s fault it was. During the phone call I was forgotten. They never spoke of it again. At least the visits stopped so, that was good..right?
See, I didn’t “get over it already” because I never got any help to heal. People just wanted the dirty secret of my pain to go away. Counseling would have been nice. Hell, a hug would have been nice.
What followed after my confession, was even worse than the abuse itself.
My abusers wife decided I was a liar. Arrived to every family function with questions for me.
My 16th birthday. My Step-Mother’s funeral. My wedding. My father’s funeral. Asking me why I had created “Such a fantasy in my own mind?”
Never did I respond. My pain was soo deep. The betrayal too sharp. Because..at each of these occasions, not a single person protected me. Not a single person spoke up for me. From age 14 until age 36. I never felt what it feels like to have someone defend me to others. I learned not to bleed on anyone’s carpet. To just take the words and fold them deep inside.
If you wonder why a person who has been sexually assaulted takes soo long to heal, maybe it would help to imagine what it feels like to have to heal alone. To have to be your own defender. To have to perform surgery on yourself. To stop your own bleeding. It can be done..but, the lack of support causes its own wound.
I’m not bleeding anymore. Now people say I’m too feminist. Too Independent. Too defensive.
I refuse to apologize for treating my own wounds.
When I see someone bleeding, I don’t ask them to stop. I tell them to go ahead and bleed on my carpet. Carpets aren’t important, people are.
This post was hard for me to write. Soo many unspoken words kept inside me. I am not angry anymore, I’m hopeful that my story can help you understand.
At 36 a man stood on his bed and screamed back at the ceiling. He was a quiet soft-spoken man, and he was defending me. I sat there completely astonished. I had never once, in my entire life, felt defended. Felt supported and protected. That relationship ended but, I cherish that memory like it’s a baby bird.
It was the very first time I felt my worth. Everyone deserves to know what that feels like.