We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

Never mind the fact that they might have tried to tell someone and got shut down.

Never mind the fact that they might have told someone who didn’t believe them

Never mind the fact that telling someone is going to create a massive conflict within their own family.

Never mind the fact that it’s extremely unlikely that any sort of conviction will occur if they tell the police.

Never mind the fact that they will now, and maybe forever, be seen as damaged goods by a large segment of society.

Never mind that no matter how heinous the crime, they’ll have to answer question after question about what they did to provoke it.

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

I get it. Punishing child abusers is an easy public opinion win. No one wants to punish abusers less. As survivors, though, we must balance that with what is best for the child. Testifying in a child abuse trial is a traumatic experience as it is. We shouldn’t be asking kids to take responsibility for taking the life of their abuser on top of that or spend the rest of their lives knowing that someone died because they spoke up. Nor should we be arming abusers with another way to manipulate kids into staying silent.

We should focus on what is best for a survivor’s healing so they can have a life after abuse because that is possible.

Heal Without Judging How Others Heal

Heal Without Judging How Others Heal

The same can be said for inpatient treatment, therapy, exercise, gardening, micro-dosing, meditation, religion, etc. There are so many things that have worked for some people in healing. The list could get long, but no matter how many items we add, one thing will be true for every item. They all worked for some of the people some of the time and never for everyone all of the time.

Healing is hard. Those who are trying to heal from trauma deserve our respect and encouragement. They don’t need a ton of judgment about how they are healing. Stop making it harder with your judgment.

Friendships Matter Much More than the Value We Place on Them
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Friendships Matter Much More than the Value We Place on Them

It’s worth thinking about your friends and recognizing that we need all kinds of friends. We need loose connections, and we need tight connections. We need long-term friends, and we need friends for a season of our lives.

In short, we need each other. I’m afraid this is something that has gotten lost in our culture. It’s certainly gotten lost in our priorities, and I consider myself as guilty as anyone.

I also know that being guilty of not prioritizing friendships has hurt me. It’s likely hurting you. It is hurting all of society. It’s time we started valuing close friendships again.

Sexual assault has happened to this many other guys, and almost nobody talks about it?

Sexual assault has happened to this many other guys, and almost nobody talks about it?

It pains me to know that so many survivors spend their adult lives in isolation and shame because they don’t know other survivors around them. This is why telling our stories when we can, is so important. No one should spend most of their adult life ashamed of surviving abuse. Those of us who are in a position to share our story and the statistics about abuse can change that. You can change that by sharing those stories and those statistics, shedding light on a subject we spend too much time trying to avoid. That light saves lives.