I do not feel that you need to be a child to believe you can not tell. There are millions of very smart, sweet, caring, and terrific people of every age that stay silent about abuses they are suffering. Maybe this blog will help someone realize that their “reasons” are actually based on lies that have been fed to them.
Here are some of the things I wish every person knew about why those whom are abused stays silent. I am sure there are even more reasons but these are mine. 🙂
1. No one asked.
- Teachers saw my bruises then looked away.
- Doctors found serious damage but believed my mother when she said I was clumsy and liked to hurt myself..
- Other adults looked on with pity in their eyes but did nothing.
- Family friends silently wondered.
- Social workers met me but never asked my mother to leave the room. Telling them the truth would be too dangerous anyways.
- No one really asked me directly.
2. I didn’t know it was happening.
- I had never lived another life so how could I know it was all so very wrong?
- I was dissociated so often that my memories and emotions were too fragmented to recall things clearly.
- I truly thought almost every little girl had my life. I was confused by the ones who had time to play.
3. I wanted to be a good girl.
- I was a child and children are expected to obey their parents/elders or they are deemed “bad”.
- If I was good, I might be more safe. Therefor? If I am not safe? I am not being good enough yet.
- I knew somewhere deep inside that “they” were really all bad and I didn’t want to be like them so I did my best to be good.
- I was told not to tell so telling would be disobedient and naughty.
4. I was told that either I would be killed or someone I loved would die if I told.
- When you’ve witnessed death, your abusers killing you doesn’t feel like just a threat. It feels like a real possibility.
- I was afraid for my sisters.
- I believed my mother would find out everything I ever did or said. She often did. Telling made me more unsafe rather than safer.
5. There was no one to tell.
- I told a school counsellor once. She called my mother and told her I needed psychiatric help due to the “crazy” stories I told her.
- I told a doctor once after he scolded me for causing “more damage” to myself. He told my mother that my behaviour was attention seeking and dangerous.
- I told a teacher once. She said she would pray for me to be healed from the turmoil in my mind and that if I prayed to God hard enough, He would take away my sins. .
- I gave up trying to tell… the blame was always shifted on to me anyways. Maybe I really was the problem? That is the lesson I took from it all.
6. I deserved everything that was happening to me.
- I was always told it was all my fault. I got what I deserved.
- If I was a better behaved girl, I would be treated better.
- I wasn’t worthy of any better.
- I caused all of it.
7. No-one would believe me. This one is HUGE and the main reason I stayed silent after trying to speak out several times.
- This was my reality. I was never believed and if by chance I was believed by someone? They were quickly educated in my “sociopathic” need for attention.
- People just could not fathom that my “stories” were true. Not in Canada and not in the 70’s and 80’s! Goodness no.
- I believe many people CHOSE not to believe me because they did not want to offend my parents.
- It was just assumed that I had a really great yet dark and troubled imagination and had difficulty telling the difference between real and pretend.
- Even in todays society people still do not want to hear or believe these stories are true. It is easier on everyone if we just think this stuff only happens in other countries or the very rare crazy person anywhere but in our own backyard.
- Being so fragmented does mean that my rendition of how something happened can be all arse end up and backwards. It does not mean it did not happen, it just means that my ability to recall every detail in order is greatly inhibited.
- We moved SO MUCH (32 homes in 16 years) that when I try to recall an age, a location, a school name, a friends home, or other details that are usually quite easy for most people to recall when they have lived in a stable place, it can be nearly impossible which in turn can make the “story” seem a bit fishy.
8. No-one would have done anything about it.
- No one ever did. Need I say more?
9. I didn’t want anyone to know.
- I blamed myself for what happened so I assumed myself to be terribly guilty, dirty, vile, tainted, unspeakably gross, and not worthy of any better. I didn’t want others to know how horrid and disgusting I really was.
10. I didn’t have the words to tell.
- I was just so confused.
- I felt like my brain was a muddled bunch of sins.
- I’d been so badly burned when trying to tell in the past.
- In the end? I am 45 now and still don’t have the right words. How could I as a child?