About two months ago, I jumped at the chance to talk about my life after trauma on Currently, Kelsie as a part of her “A Moment With ________” series. The night before it went live, though, I was struck with terror and worry about how it would be perceived, if others thoughts about me would change, and how the readers of my personal blog would react to it. I woke my husband up a few times to tell him I was having second thoughts and I wasn’t sure about speaking out about what had happened, albeit as vaguely as I was.
Finally, a very tired and probably annoyed Josh asked me why I was so darn worried. After considering this for awhile, I began to recognize the reasons I was feeling this fear were deeply rooted in society’s views and values of what made a “good Christian woman.” While I have never personally changed my view on a person after hearing about their trauma, I know it’s a reality out there that exists in the minds of some humans; and I didn’t want those types of humans to think that way about me.
Despite “knowing better” and being someone who has trained in areas of sexual assault, I was still viewing myself in negative ways because of what happened to me. Something I had promised to never do to any victim, I was applying to my own behavior to these terrible and unfair beliefs. What lies was I afraid of others believing?
That I was weak for allowing this to happen to me.
I was so scared people would see my mess inside, and believe I was some kind of damaged goods for my past.
That I was broken.
That I was a different person than the person they knew the past five years, simply because they had a new perspective of my history.
That this somehow changed their opinions on me.
That the opinions of the people who did change their view on me mattered.
I forgot in my moments of panic that these things were lies. That who I was didn’t change with some new knowledge of things that happened years ago.
I forgot that the people who mattered most knew…or didn’t care.
I forgot that my brokenness was there…and the repairs that followed made me stronger than before.
I forgot that the opinion of those who based who I was off this information truly did not matter.
I forgot an important part of why I talk about these things too; because people often read about things on someone’s blog and they make a connection. When I opened up on Currently, Kelsie, it was no different. I had people come to me and tell me they had similar experiences, people thank me for talking about these things, and people tell me that they appreciated my openness and honesty. I don’t do it for the appreciation; I do it for the connection. I remember feeling completely alone in many aspects of my healing and being able to be a support to any of these people means the world to me. Even the ones who didn’t have the capability yet to tell me they felt that way.
We need to stand together and support each other in this world, especially against these things. And we need to stop listening to the lies that are screamed at us by society and the enemy. I’m happy I chose to still share and offer an understanding and support to others, despite my fears and Satan’s insistence to attack me and put doubt in my heart.
I refuse to be silent while there are still others in the middle of this. I refuse to keep quiet when I know my children are at a risk and this is a harsh reality they may face someday. All the things I was scared people would begin to associate with me? Even if people did, it’s worth it, to know one person out there can confide in and rely on me when they had no one else.
I am so grateful for Kelsie to allow me to share and I’m thankful for those of you who have continuously read and supported me. I loved being able to share something so close to my heart.