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I'm putting yesterday's post back up because I want the world to know the truth about what happened in that car between Chris Brown and Rihanna. However, comments are closed.
Also read what Sam (our generous web designer) had to say on Canada Moms Blog.
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Thank you for visiting Violence UnSilenced, a speak-out platform for survivors of domestic abuse, sexual assault, and sexual abuse. If you are a survivor and it is safe to do so, we encourage you to share your story here. If you are not a survivor but you want to support those who are, please click around this site and find out more about what you can do.
This whole site is incredible and powerful. You really are an amazing advocate for those who have lost their voice by empowering them to use it again.
Thank you for your comments here about the Chris Brown/Rhianna case. I appreciate what you had to say and the boundaries you have created here.
The Chris Brown/Rhianna case has frightened me so much because of the very public way that Rhianna's choices have been criticized, questioned, and even ridiculed in the blogosphere as well as in traditional media outlets. I agree with you that other victims may hear and internalize those messages and thus feel even further isolated. I would add that abusers count on it and even use those public statements to their advantage. That's why abusers continue to have so much power -- because, we, as a society, still haven't reframed the question from "Why doesn't she just leave?" to "Why did he do that?" Unwittingly, we give abusers ammunition when we question victims' choices because we reinforce every message the abusers have ever given their victims about the violence being the victims' fault.
Thank you again, Maggie, for this incredible gift to victims and survivors. As a survivor myself, I can't even express how much this means to me.
My post is up at Deep South Moms on this topic. http://svmomblog.typepad.com/deep_south_moms/2009/03/nickelodeon-thinks-using-your-fists-makes-you-cool-rtp.html
Thank you for the link to my post Maggie.
For the record, as you know, I strongly believe in what you're doing here and I stand behind each and every decision you make.
Posting the affidavit was a good thing to help people realize that violence can effect everyone regardless of your fame, fortune or family unbringing. Having money or power does not make someone less susceptible or scared.
I pray she finds the strength she needs to free herself of this situation - the same prayer I have for all of those who are in such a situation.
Thank you for reposting it and for posting this. I think it's really important to share it (in fact i'll be sharing it later this week too) because people see the stories and blow it off, but if they could read the report, it's truly terrifying. Thanks for just everything - this web site is amazing.
I wish we could get her to read this blog, Maggie. I wish she knew that people like you are out there; that the survivor stories are real and inspiring.
And thanks for mentioning that leaving the same comment over and over is ok. I was starting feel like it seemed insincere, but I'm glad it's not that way.
Thank you for the link to the mamapop post. I'm very proud of that post, especially since it was written on 8 minutes of sleep after my 3 year old had been hurt (not abused, freak accident) at school.
I wondered what happened to that post. It seemed like an important example to share - I had no idea that's what happened to Rhianna. But I understand why it was pulled now, and the urge to do so. Thanks for reposting, with the explanation.
feeling responsible here... i don't often fill in the words that float in my head, i've asperger's, and i presume everyone knows what i am thinking in between the words.
i stated she went back, i should have included "as we all do".
i still desire her to be strong enough to go, and for him to rot in prison... i speak as a survivor, not as some random poster (as you well know)
Glad I stopped by to read this post maggie, Thank you for clearing up any
misunderstandings we may have had about comments being important. I agree wholeheartedly with your reasoning for not making judgments in anyway. Regards,
I've had to pipe in a few times on other blogs to remind people that Rihanna has done nothing wrong. People are disappointed that she's gone back, but clearly they are forgetting the cycle of violence and that victims needs support, not judgment.
Anyway, I appreciate this open space for survivors to speak. Thanks for providing it!
I guess I missed the debate that ensued.
In any case, this is a sensitive topic and I hope that everyone remembers that. In some cases, those who have shared are posting on something long past. For others, they've not even left the abuse yet.
It's important to point out the support the comments section provide. I try to make a point of posting to every one, even at the risk of repeating myself. Saying similar words to diffeent posters doesn't make them mean any less.
I wondered where that post went. It seemed to disappear as I was reading it.
Your point about each contributor having everything staked on one post is right on. There is a common theme in all of them, and a common theme in the response to all of them as well. And if the same person were reading the comments every time they'd begin to sound trite and hackneyed.
But the same person isn't reading them every time. Yes, there are those who read and comment faithfully and they may see the sameness in them. But the most important reader of those comments is the contributor that submitted the story in the first place. And this is someone who may or may not have read the comments on every other post -- hell any other post.
But let me just take a moment to commend your sense of purpose and your focus. It's so easy to get so immersed in something like this that the filters break down and suddenly everything that seems even remotely relevant becomes blog fodder. And when you're trying to fan the spark that your efforts have started, the temptation to throw everything on the fire has to be pretty consuming.
But I'm pretty confident that the courageous survivors who provide the bulk of the material here appreciate that their stories are heard in an environment relatively free of the "noise" of the intertubez. In here there is a sanctuary from the overall cacophony where they can be heard.
And then there are those who come here to hear them. Here's hoping that the quiet ones will find their voices and comment so that the ones bold enough to speak up will know that their testimony has been heard.
From what I can tell Maggie, you're doing it right. More than right. Near perfectly.
It's so easy to judge, but when you do you hold your hands around a person's neck and squeeze.
When I was being abused, and living through it, the ONE thing there was plenty of was judgment. I got it heaped on me everywhere I turned. And believe me, none could compare with what I was heaping on myself. Nothing anyone said could make me hate myself any more than I already did.
And when I finally got the courage to leave, I ran to the ONE person that didn't judge me. She said nothing. She opened her arms, loved me anyway and let me heal. And that few weeks has made more of an impact in my life than any other lesson. Not judging someone frees them to act.
I understand your POV and change of heart. I also understand the anger people feel, and what may be called judgments. It's a tough call. I think the best that can be done is to just keep spreading the word.
Thank you for the insight on the comments. I really hadn't thought of it that way. I felt like saying the same "Thank you for sharing" each time made me look ridiculous, so I kept reading, but stopped commenting. I won't make that mistake again.
Thank you, Maggie, for everything you're doing!!