Friday, March 29, 2013

Government Pay Attention to Child Abuse And Its Damage To Society And Children

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and also Sexual Assault Awareness Month. A friend of mine Ms Patricia McKnight asks why aren't they separated and each topic given its own month for awareness. I agree with her. They should each get their own month.

In one of her recent blog articles, Ms McKnight talks about how child abuse and domestic violence are neither one getting the attention they need from our country's politicians and lawmakers. I hope you will go to the following link and read "Please tell me why this is not a crucial point of attention!" at Ms McKnight's blog survivorsjustice. 

Why is the abuse of our children not important enough to draw the attention of those who make the laws of our lands. Is it because children can't vote? Why does it seem that only survivors of child abuse, rape and domestic violence are the only ones speaking out and wanting critical changes so that our children will be safe? Every parent in our country should be demanding that laws be made to protect our children.

Another blog post that I would like to call your attention to is on the blog Making the Shift, Heal My PTSD. The title of this post is "The Impact of Childhood Trauma on Adult Disorders." The information submitted in this post by provided by Libby M.

Maybe if the government was more aware of what child abuse and domestic violence costs our nation in medical care and mental care then they would pay more attention and make laws to protect our children. As you know, I am a survivor of incest. I am also a survivor of domestic violence and living in a family with the growing disease of alcoholism. I am one of many. There would not be nearly so many citizens in need of expensive health care if we hadn't been abused as children. Just how much money do you think that would save our nation? Putting a sexual abuser of children in jail for just a few years and then releasing him/her back out on the streets to abuse again isn't enough. When they are in jail, nothing is done to change their sick way of thinking. Why should they be released to hurt more children?

From the blog Evil Sits at the Dinner Table, I would like to share the article "The Child Inside Wants To Heal and Will Even Re-Create Trauma To Get Our Attention."

Childhood trauma and its memories don't go away. Our subconscious mind stores the trauma and sometimes hides it away from the victim, for awhile. The emotional energy from the trauma is also stored by the subconscious until it can be resolved. Recreating the trauma so that it can be healed is why survivors sometimes get into abusive relationships in their adult life. The mind wants you to heal. As survivors who choose to confront our abuse and our abusers, we are often told to let it go because that was a long time ago. The subconscious doesn't let it go until the trauma is healed. Flashbacks are part of the subconscious trying to heal. Flashbacks happen when the survivor is safe and the mind thinks it is time to deal with the abuse. It is my belief that many mental illnesses come from the trauma of our childhood. Childhood sexual abuse is the worst form of abuse for the damage that it causes physically, emotionally and mentally.

The last blog post that I want to share with you is from a wonderful Aussie bloke (That's Aussie for man. I love the language and accent.) that I have followed for a few years now because he keeps me grounded with his no none sense way of writing. My friend, Craig Harper, tells it like it is. I read everyone of his blog articles on his blog Motivational Speaker / Craig Harper.  I don't comment on all of them but I did twice on the article called "Dear Women of the World. . ."

Many survivors of childhood abuse have low self-worth as a result of the shame and the emotional abuse that goes hand-in-hand with the physical and sexual abuse that they endure. I warn you ahead of time that Mr. Harper uses a certain 4-letter word in his article but it just seems to fit what he is expressing. It didn't bother me in the least. I even chuckled a little at his use of it. The last short paragraph of the article says it all quite well so I am sharing it here word for word:

"Changing your default setting and your internal dialogue from 'I am crap' to 'I am okay' to 'I am pretty freakin' awesome', is not a quick process but the good news is, it's possible. Totally possible. If I'm someone who you trust, respect and pay attention to as a writer and mentor, then pay attention (and don't over-think it) when I tell you that you are...


Thank you Craig Harper for your article to the women of the world. I hope that they listen. The article could also fit if you are a man who has been abused and have problems with low self-worth.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Steubenville Rape Of The Victim

According to the National Center for Victims of Crime  ( )

1 in 4 girls will be sexually abused by age 18

1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused by age 18

90,000 cases are reported in the U. S. each year

90 percent of the time, the child knows the perpetrator of the abuse

117 victims a child molester will have assaulted before being caught

Trigger Warning added to this post. Read at your own risk. I am angry. I am horrified and I want you to be too. Everyone should be furious about this incident and the resulting court case.

Steubenville, Ohio has a young teenage girl that is in the 90% who knows her perpetrators of rape.  If you aren't familiar with the case, I will be posting links to some of the articles that were written about the rape. You are going to see the word rape and victim in this article a lot because I want everyone to see what was done to this child and I want it to be real for my readers as it was real for her. I don't want you to distance yourself from your feelings. I want you to feel everything this girl felt the morning after as she was told what happened to her the night before. As the newspapers and attorneys keep pointing out, she was drunk, so drunk that she didn't remember the events until friends told her the next day.

Warning: Disturbing Photo: Here is the link to the first article that I read about the event:

My husband was listening to the TV a day or two after this news article was posted and the reporter said it did not look good for the victim. The reporter thought that the two high school football players were going to get away with their crime of raping this drunken girl. The football players weren't being tried by the reporters, the victim was. The important question to the court case had to do with whether the girl gave consent or whether she was too drunk to give consent. At 16, should it matter? At the very least, it was statutory rape. If she wasn't passed out drunk, she was still not thinking clearly by the time that the rape happened.

What teenaged girl do you know that would give consent to being raped digitally and orally on camera? What teenaged girl do you know would give consent to be humiliated by having her picture taken while her two rapists are picking her partially naked body up by her feet and arms because she wasn't conscious enough to walk with them? I don't know any and I'll bet you don't either.

The boys say she was conscious. Does she look conscious to you in that blurred photo in the news article? By the way, this photo, not blurry, was sent out by cell phones and even made it to the internet to who knows how many people. Why didn't any of the people standing around watching this part of the incident, stop these football players? Where is their responsibility in this? Some were given immunity for testifying against the two football players. Later articles questioned whether the witnesses were actually given immunity. I hope they were not. Anyone who watched this rape and did nothing is guilty too.

That photo brings up lots of feelings for me. Anger, even fury, hopelessness, shame, fear from my inner children, disgust with the rapists and the news reporters, knots in my stomach because of my own experience with the childhood rapes from incest. Those feelings of mine are why it has taken me awhile to write this article. I still shy away from very strong feelings like these.

According to Yahoo! News in the article "Computer expert testifies at Ohio rape trial" at the following link

17 cellphones took pictures of the rape victim being help by her arms and feet by her rapists. How many friends do you think those images went out to and how many more times do you think those were sent out? How many people saw that photo? How many of them looked at that picture and said, "This is wrong! I have to do something about this?"

The two football players, Trent Mays and Ma'Lik Richmond, according to the above article, were charged with  the digital penetration of the victim in a car and later in the basement of a house that they moved her to.

Another link: "Steubenville rape suspects' teammates testify they saw them commit sex acts"

These witnesses were granted immunity so they would testify. They saw and they did not stop this crime of rape from happening to this girl. I am horrified. I pray that my son or grandsons would never just stand there and watch when a crime like this is happening. Where was their moral outrage? Where was their compassion for this girl? Are football players in our country just given free reign to do anything that they want to because they are football players? This is so wrong.

Mark Cole, Anthony Craig, and Evan Westlake were named as some of those witnesses who did nothing to prevent the rape of this victim. In my eyes, they are just as guilty but they were given immunity for their testimony. Mark Cole is the person who video taped the sexual acts in the car but he later on deleted it from his camera. Photos and video images were posted online the night of the rape.

Did you wonder when the victim would start being blamed for her own rape and when the fact that she was drunk would be brought up as a cause for the rape? The question of the victim's honesty was brought into the court room. Having four shots of vodka and two beers does not make you a target for rape. It might make you incapacitated but it does not give someone else the right to rape you. Neither does saying that you like one of the boys and would like to have sex with them. Saying and doing are two different things, especially when you aren't thinking clearly because of alcohol.

Many of the comments that I have read online fully support the two football players and blame the victim because she was drunk. What these people don't get is that people get drunk every night but that doesn't make them rape victims. Women can wear short skirts, low-cut blouses, push-up bras, whatever, that does not mean they are asking to be raped. Nothing you can wear makes you open game for a rapist. Saying you like someone does not give that person the right to rape you. Is the rape culture so strong in our country that it is easier to blame the victim than to put the responsibility where it belongs with the rapist?

There is so much more I can say and probably will in another article. I am tired and drained by writing this one. By the way, the two football players were found guilty. I will write about my feelings about that in the second article. Thank you for going along with me on this sometimes painful journey.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Helping Survivors Of Abuse Want To Change

I am approached occasionally by survivors who say they want help in changing their lives. For those survivors, I offer words of encouragement and hope. I listen. Listening is often all that is needed. I have also learned not to give advice. Most people don't want advice. They want someone to listen to their story and to validate their feelings. That is good. You all have your own answers anyway.

I belong to several support groups online. I love these groups because they offer me love and encouragement. Occasionally, not often, I will get discouraged with someone who says they want help, who says they want to change and the reality is that they just want to wallow in self-pity and they want an audience to do it. Self-pity is good, in that it helps you get in touch with your feelings, but it is not good when you stay there and do nothing to move forward. The "oh poor me's" don't help you heal. They keep you stuck in the hurting. Some people enjoy that hurting because it brings them attention from others. Some people equate any attention at all with love, even negative attention. That is not love.

If you are in a bad relationship, look at why you are staying. Is it fear of being alone, fear of the unknown? Is the pain you are feeling worth you staying? If the answer is no, then it is time for change. If you aren't tired of hurting, continue as you are. I can't change anything for you. You must be willing to make the necessary changes yourself, or not, as you choose. I can't change anything for you and I won't waste your time or mine trying. Change can only come from you. I will love you enough to let you make your own decisions. If you stay, I won't be there to watch your pain but I will be here if you ever change your mind and decide that you have value and deserve better.

You have to want and work toward having a better life. It is okay to wallow in self-pity for a little while but if you want to be happy, you have to change your attitude and learn to love yourself. I know that is easier said than done. I also know you can do it. I have.

For me, for years, I was stubborn and was so afraid of the unknown and change of any kind. The more afraid I was, the more controlling I became. I wasn't willing to change until I hurt enough that I would do anything to change. I didn't have a bad relationship with my husband. I had a bad relationship with me. I hated myself because of the shame and self-blame of the incest. When I hurt enough, I was then ready for change. The point in sharing this with you is to show you that I am not telling you anything that I haven't done myself.

I worked really hard first with self-improvement books and then finally when the world opened up and more people started talking and writing about child sexual abuse, my real healing from incest started. The work to change wasn't easy. Years of hard work were involved. I went from hating and blaming myself for the incest to knowing it wasn't my fault and I could let go of the shame. I found myself paying attention to the people that said they liked me and loved me. I wondered why? I tried to see me as others saw me. I decided if they liked me maybe I could too. I found books to read about learning to love myself. Once I started to love myself by using affirmations and getting to know my inner children, I grew rapidly.

Today I know and love myself and I know that you can too. I want the best for you but what I want isn't important. You have to want it for yourself. You are worth love just as I am. If you are unhappy with your current situation or relationship, you are the only one that can do something about changing your life. I hope you will take a chance on you. I am here if you need me.

If you are wondering what books I read that made such a difference in my life, here is the link to those books:

Resources For An Incest Survivor And Adult Children Of Dysfunctional Families:

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

A Thank You Note to The Wounded Warrior

This is a very late Thank You to my friend Jan L. Frayne who is Beyond_Survivor on Twitter and his blog is The Wounded Warrior. Jan, I am so sorry that I haven't written this thank you post before now.

On February 26, 2013, The Wounded Warrior blog and its creator/writer/blogger Jan Frayne gave me an award. The award is called the Written Acts of Kindness Award. To see this beautiful award and the words that Jan wrote about me, you need to go to the following link:

Jan and I met through his blog The Wounded Warrior and Twitter close to 2 years ago now. Jan was one of my first male survivor friends to meet online. We have supported and encouraged each other ever since then. I hope you will take the time to visit and read some of Jan's blog articles and feel what it is like to be a little boy sexually abused by those who you should be able to trust. Jan is one of my poet friends too. I have a few online now, male and female. Writing poetry is a talent that I admire but don't possess myself. Not all of Jan's writing is poetry. I did a book review sometime in the past year of Jan's first book, Beyond Survivor: Rising from the Ashes of Childhood Sexual Abuse. You will find the link to my book review here:

Whether you are male or female, Jan's book is a good read. Again, thank you Jan for the honor you gave me. Together we are changing the world for ourselves and for other survivors of childhood sexual abuse.

Before I close this post, I want to introduce you to two ladies that I have recently met through Facebook. They are two special ladies that I look forward to getting to know better.

The first is Annie O'Sullivan. I introduced you to Annie O'Sullivan in one of my recent blog posts where I listed the radio programs for Butterfly Dreams Talk Radio and  Abuse Recovery March Guests which you will find at the following link:

This time I want to introduce you to Annie O'Sullivan's blog, Broken Until Spoken and one particular article that she just recently posted that I especially like called "Who AM I NOT? Here is the link for that:

I know Annie would love it if you left a comment on her post. She is a great lady. Stop by and listen to her radio program every Friday night at 7:00 p.m. EST. You will enjoy the programs. You might see me there in the chat room. I don't make it to all of the programs because I am busy some Friday nights. That is when I go and listen to the archived shows when I have time. Tell Annie that I said "Hi."

The last person that I want to introduce you to is Ms E. L. Farris, better known as El. Her blog is called RUNNING FROM HELL WITH EL. I am just getting to know El and I very much like what I see. El is a runner in marathons which I greatly admire. In another lifetime, I might would have been a runner. I loved running as a kid. I always had more skinned up knees and elbows from trying to run faster than I could when I was a child. I did win a few races in elementary and even one in college that was a surprise to everyone. I loved it. I would have run track in high school but my dad wouldn't allow me to participate in after school activities that he couldn't control. Here is the link to El's blog:

Well, I know I have given you a lot of links and a lot of reading to do. Have fun. Thanks to Jan, Annie and El for coming into my life. Have a glorious week everyone unless you choose otherwise.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Eternity's Sunrise Website

I just finished adding Eternity's Sunrise website to my blogroll. I wanted to further bring this site to your attention because of its Resources page. The resources are for survivors, loved ones of survivors, domestic violence survivors, hotlines and survivor blogs.

This blog Spiritual Journey Of A Lightworker was very recently added to their page. I thank you for the honor of being added to your page, Cosima Zehring. I recently met Cosima on Twitter. Here is the link to Eternity's Sunrise Resources page:

I hope you will join me in welcoming Eternity's Sunrise to our community.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Butterfly Dreams Talk Radio and Abuse Recovery March Guests

One of the things that has taken up a lot of my time over the past few months, in addition to helping Daniel with his book, Standing on the Edge of Time, has been listening to the radio programs of Butterfly Dreams Talk Radio and Abuse Recovery on Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings starting at 7:00 p.m. EST here in the U. S.

Patricia McKnight is the founder of these programs. The topics for some of the past programs have been child abuse, incest, child abductions, domestic violence, and bullying. Trish, as she is called by friends, works well with co-host Michal Madison.

If you are interested in joining me in listening to these programs, here is the link for the list of programs for March:

If the timing of the programs doesn't fit your schedule, the programs are archived for later listening. I seem to miss most of the Friday night ones so I usually have to listen to the archive for those programs myself. There is a chat room that is always active with each of these programs. You can sign into the chatroom with your Facebook or Twitter accounts.

Monday and Wednesday evening programs are hosted by Trish and Michal. Friday nights programs are hosted by Annie O'Sullivan and Kelly Behr. Some of the programs are information gathered by Trish followed by call-ins from the listeners and others have scheduled guests with lots of information about the topics of interest. I have grown so much because of the sharing of information in these programs which are called "Generation No More" on Monday nights, "Survivor's World" on Wednesday nights and Annie's show on Friday evenings is called "Can You Hear Me Now".

Don't get discouraged because the program sometimes has technical difficulties at the beginning. Wednesday night's program of Survivor's World was like that. I stuck with it and was able to finally connect and the program was one of the best that I have heard. Janet Nestor was the guest talking about her new book on self-care. So many survivors have no clue on how to take care of their bodies or their emotional needs because they weren't taught as a child that those were important to having a good life. I certainly wasn't taught self-care. I was so disconnected from my body and my feelings just to survive the incest. I had to learn how to do the simple things of self-care. Here is the link to Monday evenings program:

On Friday evening, Annie O'Sullivan on "Can You Hear Me Now" is hosting her first HAPPY HOUR call-in program. The question she is asking is, "What makes you a survivor and not a victim?" I hope that you will join the program and call in your answer to the Annie's question. The link for Friday night's program is:

One more radio program that I stumbled across just this week because of my friend Cyrus Webb is of an interview that he did with a fellow survivor and activist Hank Estrada. Here is the link for that radio interview between Cyrus and Hank:

I hope you will join me in listening to these programs. Some of them do need Trigger Warnings. If the topic is too sensitive for your place of comfort, do what is necessary to take care of you first.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

March Submissions for Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse

I haven't submitted any of my blog articles to Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse in awhile. I just got so busy that I started missing the submission dates. I need to get active again in this.

Thank you to Tracie of the blog from Tracie for continuing to host this Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse. If you are interested in reading some of the past blog carnival articles or in joining me in submitting your own articles about child abuse, please go to the following link:

The deadline for submissions is March 27.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Standing on the Edge of Time by Daniel Singleton

Where did February go? Several times I thought about sitting down and writing another article here for you to read, but then I would get busy with something else and the day would be gone. The whole month was like that.

A lot of my time lately has been taken up in helping my husband get his book self-published. We decided to go through AuthorHouse. I checked out three different self-publishers online and decided on AuthorHouse. It wasn't the cheapest place to publish but it seems to suit my husband Daniel's needs just a little better than the other two. They have also been kind with my limited computer skills. Daniel has less skills that I do with the computer so that work fell in my lap. Also all of the phone conversations have been mine because Daniel's hearing loss that he has had since childhood has gotten much worse over the past 5 years. He now has problems hearing some people over the phone so I have become his spokesperson. Because of a misunderstanding on my part with the first salesperson that I spoke with, Daniel's book is under my name for all correspondence from AuthorHouse. He is just listed as the author. It would have cost us more time and money to change it all to his name.

The title of Daniel's book is Standing on the Edge of Time: Civil War 1862, Crisis in the West. I got all of the necessary information and pictures sent in last week, with a picture of Daniel for the About the Author page being the last thing to send in. This coming week, all of the pages will go to the Design Team. According to our new Check-in Coordinator, the book will go to the printer in about 60 days. The waiting is so discouraging for Daniel.

To borrow from the front of Daniel's book, here is what his historical novel is about:

"The Story of Private Robert G. Jarman and the 4th Arkansas Infantry,
                Confederate States of America
In the Battles of Elkhorn Tavern, Arkansas; Famrington, Mississippi;  Richmond, Kentucky; and           Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Also the Siege of Corinth, Mississippi, and the 1862 Kirby Smith Kentucky Raid

Includes 253 eye-witness accounts, 437 letters and reports written between the commanders, 545 newspaper articles, a list of 125 damaged or burned cities & the 85 bloodiest battles

A Historical Novel by Daniel Singleton"

Daniel has worked on his novel for 9 years researching and reporting what the Civil War might have been like for his ancestor Robert G. Jarman, just one of Daniel's six direct ancestors who fought in the Civil War.  I have watched Daniel spend time and money, get excited about some of his finds and get discouraged several times because of the lengthy process of writing. I am proud of him and his accomplishment. I always knew he was a wonderful storyteller. Now he is truly a writer.

With my part in getting this book out there done, I will now have time to write my own book about healing from incest. You will see some of the same information in my book that you read in my blog articles that I have written over the past five years. Some of it, I am sure, you have never seen because it hasn't been presented to me yet.  Just this past week, some issues have presented themselves to me but that is stuff for another blog post. For now, I wanted to introduce you to my wonderful, supportive, kind, and stubborn husband and his book. I will let you know where Daniel's book is on the market in case any of you are fellow historians. Til then have a glorious week everyone.