Before reading the following post, please note this information contains subject matter that may cause a deep emotional response. It is provided as an informational look into the findings, as well as assistance to those who have endured childhood trauma or who know of someone who may be in need of assistance. It will be the only post like it on my page, because while I support causes that work avidly against any form of abuse and neglect of children, I also support the joy of writing and reading that comes from the growth and experience of moving forward. That said, there are resources provided at the end of the post for those seeking such assistance.
It’s obviously a very personal decision to share a story regarding trauma. It puts anyone who chooses to at the mercy of their audience for immediate judgment and the risk of losing relationships. It also makes some people uncomfortable to hear such stories because not everyone can empathize or understands how to sympathise with someone who has experienced childhood trauma. It’s like a different world, an island of isolation, to the ears of someone who doesn’t understand the effects of abuse. But it’s worth hearing the stories of others, because it’s exactly those experiences that connect us as human beings, and the more we know, the better people we can be to one another. After all, we are human before we are what we label ourselves as; Mom, Dad, Engineer, Mechanic, Advisor, Doctor…you get the point. The purpose of posting this message is to express that a positive and beautiful life is possible after surviving such experiences, often in cases of multiple ‘assailants’.
I’ve been told twice in my life, “You should be dead in a ditch, or strung out on drugs wasting away.” My reply: “Well, that serves no purpose. I can forgive them, I just don’t want to feel their pain anymore.” For me, the issue of trauma resolved years ago, but scars remain that come to the forefront at times in my life and urge me to address them, so that I can continue the life I want for myself, a positive and healthy life that my family and I deserve, and most importantly to absolutely not be mired in the atrocities carried and inflicted by others, even if they turn out to be our own parents.
Let’s be clear, most parents are loving, caring and interested in their children’s lives and welfare. Yes, as parents no one is perfect no matter the front you see. And, in fact, we all get busy and find that we don’t always have enough time for our kids or always say exactly the right thing when we’re supposed to. But that isn’t what this post is about; the imperfections of being a parent. This subject is about parents who ignore their children, leave them for days even as young children, don’t show any interest in them, have no care to hear their concerns, or attend to their basic emotional needs. Or, what is sometimes referred to as willful neglect. It’s also about different types of abuse; emotional/psychological, physical and sexual and its effects. Some of the data won’t surprise you, but some of it very well might. I encourage you to take a few minutes to read the attached study (PDF). You may agree or disagree with certain points. That’s just fine. If you decide to delve a bit, please do so with an open mind, leaving judgment at the door. For those who’ve suffered from such victimization, please stop reading at any point where you begin to feel uncomfortable. Remember, the aim of this post is to inform, to create a bridge from unknowing to better understanding in the effort for heightened awareness. That’s all. And if none of it appeals to you, that’s okay, too.
- American Humane Association
63 Inverness Drive East
Englewood, CO 80112-5117
- Child Help USA
15757 North 78th Street
Scottsdale, AZ 85260
- American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law
740 15th Street, NW, 9th floor
Washington, DC 20005-1009
- American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children
407 South Dearborn, Suite 1300
Chicago, IL 60605
- Child Welfare Information Gateway Children’s Bureau/ACYF/ACF/HHS
1250 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20024
- Family Violence and Sexual Assault Institute
1121 East S.E. Loop 323, Suite 130
Tyler, TX 75701
- National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse
332 S. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1600
Chicago, IL 60604-4357
(800) CHILDREN – info. on getting involved/preventing abuse
(800) 55-NCPCA – info. on parenting/abuse
- National Organization for Victim Assistance
1757 Park Road NW
Washington, DC 20010
- Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network
635B Pennsylvania Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20003