I sat down this week to do an interview with Ron Rapaport, host of the It’s a Wrap podcast. You can take a listen to it here, and also check out some of the other inspiring guests Ron has been interviewing since starting his podcast! As always, if you are a podcast host and…
Grateful for another chance to talk to fellow survivors on this week’s episode of the Blue Radio Show Podcast. Thanks to Helia for reaching out and asking me to share my story. You can listen to the audio on either the YouTube above, or on Spotify, and check out the other episodes where Helia has…
Am I sad that there are fewer child abuse advocacy groups on Facebook overall? Sure. But, what makes me sadder is how many legitimate advocacy groups fell massively short of their duty to tell the truth to their followers. How many continued to share these theories well after they were disproved in some bizarre effort to show how much more they cared about children, while diverting attention and resources from real victims and organizations trying to help them.
So no. I don’t feel sorry for you if your page was taken down by Facebook for violating their terms of service around spreading disinformation. You owed real survivors, and the people who followed you to learn more about true child abuse stories, more than that. You are right about one thing, child abuse and child trafficking is an incredibly important issue. Spreading lies doesn’t help that message, it provides the rest of the world an excuse to ignore it. If you truly want to advocate for children, stick to the truth, or suffer the consequences.
I feel fairly certain I have never read a worse example of how certain worldviews will have to end up blaming the victim for their own suffering than this quote from an article about how we can fetishize “surviving” during difficult times, often taking more interest in things like the Holocaust:
Recently, a textbook required for the UNC minicourse “21st Century Wellness” was skewered for suggesting—as a headline read—“Holocaust victims who died failed to find their inner strength.” The actual text included: “The people in the camps who did not tap into the strength that comes from their intrinsic worth succumbed to the brutality to which they were subjected.”
I realize that this seems shocking that anyone would believe this, but I have a different take on it. Why wouldn’t some people believe this?
I see this a lot in our communities as well. Again, empathy when dealing with an individual child, or supporting a loved one with a mental health struggle is great, but trying to feel the pain of all of the abuse survivors we are likely to come across in the world online, is a sure way to overwhelm yourself and burn out. I’ve seen it over and over again. Much like COVID-19, these issues are global, and huge. Trying to take on that much pain is an impossible task, and isn’t actually going to be helpful. Much better, is to develop compassion. As the guests on the show discuss, compassionate emotions push us to act. That act, helping others, does more good for them, but is also good for us. Instead of feeling overwhelmed, and shutting down, we are taking some small amount of control over the situation, and acting on it in a way to helps. We become the helpers that Mr. Rogers so famously talked about. Being a helper, makes us happier. It sets aside our own anxiety and struggle to do something, which is always a good way to move beyond those things.
So, the question may be not only what are you doing to take care of yourself during this time of great anxiety, but what are you doing to help others?
Which brings us to Daisy. She did not get her justice from the court system, quite the opposite. But, she did something else that many assume is a sign of “being healed”, she found her voice. She told her story, she had a movie made where she could speak her truth to the whole world. Surely, that is healed, right?
As we now know, that probably wasn’t the case. I assume that many people who watched that documentary went on to become fans of Daisy, admiring her for having the courage to tell her story, happy for her that she was able to overcome, but that had nothing to do with the reality of what surviving actually is.
The coincidence that I spoke of came this morning, when I popped over to Twitter during a quick coffee break, and saw Rachel Denhollander, another survivor who’s made an appearance in a documentary, Athlete A, on her involvement with the Larry Nasser case, talking about this article:
Daisy Coleman’s Death Lays Bare the Myth of ‘Surviving