"I swear never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. Silence encourages the tormentor never the tormented." Eli Wiesel
It's taken me a long time to be willing and able to tell. For years, I said nothing. For years, I couldn't admit what happened. I didn't want anyone to know. Keeping silent though, hurt too much. It kept me in a cycle of shame no matter what I did or how many things I accomplished. I couldn't let people look in my eyes. I knew if they did, they would see how damaged I was.
One day last April, I sat at my computer. The thought jumped into my head, 'I wonder what happened to him?'
I googled his name. Nothing came up. I googled everything I could think of that would bring a hit, but still nothing. And then, a woman emailed me. She knew him. She had gone to university with him. "Call me," she wrote.
I called. She talked. She told me he had spent 3 years in prison for raping his daughter. The woman sent me newspaper articles and court records. She asked how I knew him. The words got stuck in my throat. I couldn't say.
She suggested I call Mike. I did. Mike told he was ruthless, vile, sadistic. He said he had pulled women into his house and locked the door from the inside preventing them from getting out. Over the years five other women told Mike similar stories to mine. - the violence, the rapes, the confinement.
It shocked me to hear what he said. Someone knew. It had happened. I didn't make it up.
I put the phone down. I thought of getting in my car, closing my eyes and driving. But my girls needed me. I would hurt them. I couldn't do that to them. So I wrote. And wrote. And wrote. I spent hours writing, and then reading and rereading. I forgot to eat. I forgot to feed the kids. I stayed in my room with the blinds closed, the lights off.
Why now God? Why are you letting me go through this now? And then I learned his son killed himself. I learned of what he had done to him. I felt sick. I thought of my kids. If anyone hurt them, touched them - I would kill them.
I need to tell. I can't be silent anymore. For the boy's sake. For my sake. For everyone who has been raped emotionally or physically - for eveyone who has been humiliated, shamed. degraded in any way.
I need to tell. I want to slip my hand in God's and trust Him to bring something good from everything that took place. I believe He dropped the thought in my head last April, to find out what happened to him.
I"m stronger now. Somehow everything that happened made me strong. I just need to know it's ok to stop fighting. To let go, to trust.
An Overseas Tale...
5 days ago