This blog is for you, whoever you are. Maybe you are one of those people who have always enjoyed that easy warmth of knowing your own worth, of feeling loved and lovable, of knowing that there was at least one person who would always come through for you, no matter what.
But maybe you were more like me. I felt alone, unsafe, unliked, and untouchable. I felt that my presence caused more annoyance than pleasure or joy. I felt that there was the larger, normal family of humanity, community, regular people — and then there was me, outside. Always outside, always not quite right.
This blog is for people like me, because what I’ve learned is that none of us is really out here alone, no matter what cruel messages of aloneness still linger in our minds. I am writing it for those whose trust in others was broken — early or late, or even very lately — and whose sense of wholeness and integrity — of body, spirit, and mind — was at any time disturbed or even shattered by carelessness, neglect, abuse, assault, or worse.
If you are in that first category and you made it to adulthood fairly unscathed, I admit, I feel a bit of jealousy. But along with being jealous, I’m deeply glad for you and those around you. Your joy matters in the world. For every person like you, there will be fewer broken spirits in the next generation. This blog is definitely for you, too.
And this blog is for me. It is a place where I aspire to write the truth as well as I can, and where I hope some of my trauma can be faced and discussed honestly and with care. You see, telling the truth has become immensely important to me. When you spend a great deal of your life denying parts of yourself, denying the truths you know within, and the reality you see outside of you, there is this longing.
I can’t count the times I have wanted to shout at my family, “NO, that is NOT right! It wasn’t LIKE THAT!” Or, more often, “wake the fuck up!” Because a family parented by people who cannot tell the truth even to themselves are bound to make liars out of their children, too, whether they intend to or not. I can no longer lie, not to other people, but especially not to myself. So in a way, this is also just me telling myself the truth as well as I can.
Just so you know what to expect, in the spirit of truth, I will be free with my language — meaning, sometimes my language will be foul. It is not meant to offend, it is simply that I don’t know how else to talk about a thing that to me is more offensive than any word or phrase could ever be. I will also talk about rape, assault, bullying, slut-shaming, and other not-so-pleasant things. I will not mince words. I will not be delicate. I will, however, always warn readers of possibly triggering material.
I plan to tell my story in bits, one “chapter” at a time. Sometimes those parts of my stories will be interspersed with other kinds of reflections — reflections on political, philosophical, and cultural things that relate. I’ll probably recommend reading. I may even say something funny once in a while.
I am anonymous for the sake of the other characters in the story — characters who are people, and for whom the truth may not yet represent freedom or healing, but only the most excruciating pain — people who have already lived in pain for so much of their lives.
The site is public because, without asking for pity or praise, I want people who don’t understand to understand, because then we might start to do some real work on some of the social ills that produce and reproduce trauma. Or at the least, maybe this blog will help someone know themselves or someone they love a little better.
Child abuse, of every stripe, is still rampant. Child prostitution, pornography, and incest live on. Parents continue to be bewildered about their children’s needs because they are already engaged in their own private struggle just to stay standing. Children continue to bully on the playground and worse. Soldiers continue to return from ugly wars unable to live in their lives as whole people. Poverty and lack of support continue to perpetuate more of the same.
The walking wounded are all around you. Maybe you wonder what their problem is, why they just can’t get it together. Or you wish they’d stop feeling so sorry for themselves. Maybe you think they’re losers who haven’t tried hard enough. Maybe you don’t think much about them at all. But I want you to think about them — about us. I want you to understand who we are, how lives like ours happen, and why lives like ours matter.