Domestic violence has long been linked to mental health conditions such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). But the stress of trauma can contribute to physical ailments, one of which is…
Welcome back blog readers,
Yesterday I created a new group on facebook, Strength in Numbers~ Peer Support. Over the last week I’ve been exchanging comments with other victims/survivors of abuse and I realized that maybe we need a platform to continue talking, rather than blowing up another account user’s personal page.
Anyone (male/female) that has endured sexual abuse, domestic abuse, emotional abuse, financial abuse or has been manipulated by a narcissist is welcome to join. The group is set to Closed Group, which means that the group name can be searched, but the discussion and the members can only be seen by other members.
I remember how I felt during the last year of my first marriage, I had been isolated from any friends/family thanks to my narcissistic husband. He would hover over my shoulder anytime he thought I was chatting with someone, he went through my emails and chat logs to make sure I wasn’t speaking ill of him, or cheating (which I was often accused of, but never did). He had full control over the finances and could spend as much as he wanted while I received $20/week after depositing my paycheck (worked full time).
Long story short, I remember feeling very helpless because I didn’t have anyone to turn to for help, nobody to talk to, the only people around was his immediate family. While they loved me, they turned a blind eye and didn’t want to get involved in our marriage even though they could see how miserable he was making my life.
So yeah, I understand that those of us in this situation need a place to vent, need someone to just listen and reassure us that we are not the crazy one in the relationship, because we are often made to feel that we are (if you’re with a narcissist). I recognize that not all of us can leave the house, not all of us have the funds to pay for professional help, not all of us have a support group within walking distance. The Strength in Numbers~ Peer Support page is my solution for that.
The Strength in Numbers~ Peer Support page offers a list of resources so that our members can seek assistance, talk to professionals, make a plan to leave their home if they feel unsafe and find legal help or a shelter in their area.
I encourage our members to share their written work, poetry, books they’ve written on this matter, share books that have helped them heal, drawings, paintings, links to their blog. Writing for me has proven to be therapeutic and I suspect this may be true for other members. Strength in Numbers~ Peer Support is a platform that promotes healing and offers a safe place for victims/survivors of abuse to support and encourage each other.
There are no fees to join, you don’t have to participate unless you are comfortable enough to share. You can sit back and learn from the experiences of other members or if you want to private message me, that is also an option. Please keep in mind that I’m not logged in 24/7 and I work part-time, but I will reply as soon as I am available to give you my undivided attention.
You are not alone! You deserve better!
I’m happy to listen and help if I can.~ Hannah
Of course, we are all entitled to our opinions and we must keep in mind that opinions are not FACTS. While we do have the freedom of speech (at least for now although sometimes it doesn’t feel that way), there is a time and place to voice your opinion.
When asked what is the best breed of dog, your answer is your opinion. When asked which is the best pizza topping(s), your answer is your opinion. When asked where is the best place to spend your honeymoon, your answer is your opinion. If we were to ask 10 people these question, the answers will not be the same.
When a victim/survivor of sexual abuse comes forward (no matter how long it takes) and your instant reaction is that THEY ARE LYING, that’s a problem. They are coming forward with the truth, with the details as to what happened. The instant judgment shows the survivor that if you don’t support them, then you must be supporting their abuser. Imagine how that must feel.
The point is, yes have your opinion but when it comes to a sensitive matter, like this one please keep in mind that 1 in 4 females is a victim/survivor of sexual assault and 1 in 6 males are a victim/survivor of sexual assault all before they turn 18. Take a moment to scroll through your friend list to help get an idea as to how many people you know have possibly been affected. Is that the message you want to send to your nephew, your grandchild, your mother who has never told a soul about the abuse she endured, that their trauma is insignificant.
Chances are, the survivor has spent decades in silence, when they do come forward they are told that their truth means nothing and instant judgments from people who weren’t even there. Strangers who think they know better are asking why we didn’t come forward earlier, asking if we were drinking and my favorite, what were we wearing?
When survivors/supporters come forward with a statement that reads: “If you have not been sexually assaulted, then you don’t get to have an opinion on how or when we come forward” if this statement ruffles your feathers, you have a slight inclination as to how we feel when we have something important to say and no one wants to hear it! You might have a better understanding as to how we have been forced to stay silent for as long as we have and why it’s so difficult to come forward at all. While we are coming forward with the truth, with details, sharing our worse nightmare, forced to relive our trauma and risk flashbacks and PTSD episodes to help take a sexual predator off of the streets and we are met with insults, accusations and being told “sorry it’s too late”, “without proof it didn’t happen” because our memories and night terrors are not enough. Do you have any idea just how frustrating that is?
Here’s my opinion, while you didn’t ask, but it’s my blog and I’ll say whatever I damn well please!
If you make a statement that indicates that you do not believe survivors, I will assume that you are just another bully who is protecting a sexual predator, or maybe you are a sexual predator. There is no other option and you are part of the problem.
I’m going to keep talking, I will not stay silent so that abusers can remain comfortable!
Domestic violence isn’t always visible. There may be no outward signs of abuse, no visits to the ER—but violence can still be occurring. It’s important for victims of domestic violence to understand t…
Source: What is Domestic Violence?