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I am 42.
Naimhe blogs at I Don't Get Out Much..
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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.
I wish so much I could be there to help you. You're the same age as my mother.
I'm going to give her breakfast in bed tomorrow. She won't know it, but it will be in your name.
Thank you for sharing your story... I hope you find real friendship, love, and peace.
you are truly such an inspiration. just to put such god-awful experiences and thoughts into such eloquent, poetic words is a milestone. as you say, you're another smiling face in the grocery store or on the street, another one of us who cares so deeply for those who are purportedly "broken," who struggles with her own self-limitations imposed by years of degrading diatribe, who fights the good fight even when it hurts. and such a fan-fucking-tastic writer to boot. thank you for sharing your story and may you (and i) continue to rise to the challenge of expanding our own horizons, breaking free of the box we've unfairly been placed in.
I think you are brave and amazing quite frankly. I understand how hard it is to see yourself from someone elses perspective, but I see your worth in your words. You are inspirational and you are living and breathing despite all those insufferably horrible things that happened to you.
Thank you - it is with sadness and courage that I see myself in your story. I have not wanted to because I have wanted to believe I am stronger than abuse. That my love conquers it. I know it does though not at the expense of denial.
Blessings to you & to all the loving supporters of this blog.
That you had the courage to write out all of your life in such a manner that I was able to see your horror, your determination and your courage amazes and inspires me.
Your story is so close to my own.
Naimhe, thank you so much for sharing this; I can't imagine the emotions involved in writing this, and sending it to Maggie.
For the record, it's not "just" truth. Truth is MIGHTY. I used to believe in the phrase "the truth will set you free" until I lived a little and realized that truth is only *one* of the things that will set you free, but it is a powerful, potent force nonetheless.
So thank you again for telling your truth.
I send you peace, peace, peace, for all your days.
If you ever doubt the importance of your comments on Violence UnSilenced, go read what today's survivor just said: http://tinyurl.com/dm3n59
Thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for reliving your aweful, hurtful, abusive past and sharing it with us. I found a litte of myself and a little of my sisters in your story--your pain. It has taken me years to have the confidence to move beyond the horrible things that happened to me in my life. I have two sisters that didnt make it as far as I have. Two beautiful women that have left this world still wanting to be loved and never feeling like they were. I have learned that it is through the strength of others, such as yourself, that victims of abuse and neglect, in its many forms, can gain the confidence to stand up, face their past and heal. Again, thank you and all the other survivors that have taken the step to reveal to the world--who is often judgemental--their survivor stories.
Naimhe, Thank you again for speaking. Bless you for commenting. Keep doing what you're doing. You've made humanity better today.
OMG--I'm so sorry that you had to live that nightmare. Thanks so much for sharing your story--you will help so many with your words!!
My heart aches to read your story. But at the same time, I wish I were as brave and strong as you are.
Thank you for sharing this with us.
It only defines as much or as little of you as you allow it to. (though it's amazing sometimes how the slightest things can uncover some long buried emotion and drop you to your knees.)
God bless you. You have struggled with and survived so much.
But you know you have. You have the power. And sharing your story, you're empowering others. Showing them the possible. What a brave, brave lady you are.
I wrote this when I first read that Maggie was putting this project together. I thought it was an important cause with the potential to help a lot of people who otherwise might not have anywhere to turn. Then it kind of fell out of my active memory. I'd drop by from time to time to see who was featured and to empathize with the stories. I knew my little blurb would be posted at some point but for some reason was still surprised when I got the word this morning - after a night of flashback type nightmares, a rarity these days. Somehow it seemed appropriate, and ironic.
I was weepy after awakening crying, seeking solace from my husband who valiantly tries to soothe me whenever I have a meltdown. I "bucked up" only to start reading comments which promptly turned me a bit gooey again. I guess it didn't occur to me that people would be moved to respond. It's just truth, ya know? It's part of what my life has held; it's MY truth.
I am not who I am solely because of abuse but abuse is part of who I am. It's a part that is ever present although normally hiding in the wings. It's part of why I care so much how other people feel and try to be supportive of those who tend to be cast aside by others for being "broken". We're all broken in some way; that doesn't detract from our worth.
I don't struggle daily with abuse issues but I do impose limitations on myself because of the lessons I've learned. Releasing that baggage and extending those limits are things I DO struggle with at times. I will never be who I might have been but I will be someone who is not afraid deep down inside. I will be someone dear to others. I will be important. I will continue to walk toward those who are gentle and away from those who cause pain. I will continue to speak out even if it embarasses or upsets others - even if that embarassment and upset make my skin begin to crawl with anxiety.
You all have no idea what your comments mean to me and I thank you for them. I will carry them with me in that place in my brain that repeats things to me when I'm unsure, and your voices will help to drown out other voices that should not, and should never, have been heard.
I almost didn't leave a comment. Not because I didn't feel for you or want to tell you it's ok to feel the way you do. Not because I didn't feel you had strength and courage - because you do.
I almost didn't leave a comment because for a moment I could swear we grew up in the same home, in the same life and every man we both knew proved his love with a fist.
People don't understand when you say that was normal for you, because it's the only life you've ever lived. I lived it day in and day out until I was 38. Today I'm 43 and yes, you can almost say your not afraid anymore.
I wish we could all say that and truly believe those words. I know 6 years later I'm still saying that like a litany....
Thank you for sharing this, you're not alone - please know that above all else, never alone. Your in my thoughts dear friend. (Hugs)Indigo
RT @MaggieDammit -- Please go support today's survivor of lifelong abuse -- http://violenceunsilenced.com/naimhe
Thank you for sharing yourstory, your survival skills are amazing. I wish the very best for you, you deserve strength, compassion, care and love that cradles you in gentleness. You deserve respect and safety and comfort. I wish all of those things for you.
Wow. Thank you so much for sharing that. Like someone else said - there's a reason that your escape attempts failed. I truly hope that one day soon, you can honestly say that you are no longer afraid - it's amazing that you survived so much, your inner strength will get you to the point where fear is no longer a part of your everyday life. Hopefully writing this was a step in that direction.
RT @MaggieDammit: Whoops! That link is broken. Please try this one: http://violenceunsilenced.com/naimhe/ *grins sheepishly*
Whoops! That link is broken. Please try this one: http://violenceunsilenced.com/naimhe/ *grins sheepishly*
RT @MaggieDammit: Please go support today's survivor of lifelong abuse: http://violenceunsilenced.com/naihme/
I am so proud of you for sharing your story.
I wish there were words I could give you that would soothe the pain you have been holding on to but I personally know that there isn't.
Believe me, ***I*** know.
You are a strong, amazing person for sharing this here and now.
Sending you warm hugs and well wishes for the healing to continue...
I pray that you are one day able to take victory from those who tormented you throughout your life. By sharing, you help us all be stronger. You help yourself be stronger.
I hope that I am always a presence in this world to help people know that they can trust and believe without fear. I want to reach out to you and talk to you and cradle you physically and spiritually until you are healed of all of your pain.
You are not alone. Those men, those monsters, were not worthy of your trust and your love. I only hope, with all my heart, one day you will find someone who is. You deserve to know happiness and you deserve to feel safe. My heart goes out to you.
my heart aches for you.
you are truly brave to tell your story...even if it's only here...to people you haven't met.
i hope that you one day find the real meaning of love...the real kind of love that doesn't have any room for guilt, hiding, shame, mistrust, abuse or not listening to someone.
Oh honey - my heart goes out to you.
I hope that by telling your story it helps you begin the process of healing, because you ARE worthwhile.
i could have written this. i am giving you a virtual hug right now.
it's hard to believe in yourself. it's hard to trust. it's impossible to forget.
know that you're a beautiful, amazing woman. know that you're not alone. know that you are loved ~ even if it's from faceless strangers on the internet.
Thank you for sharing your story. I hope you can find a way to love and trust and not be afraid. Because you deserve it!
Reading this was like a kick in the stomach. "He", the singular, you expect it to be a guy. One guy. Not every effen guy you've ever known. So well written. Every time a new turn, another slap across the face, just like the life that inspired it must have been.
It makes me want to be the one to hold you and tell you what somebody should have told you long ago.
You are not wrong.
You are not to blame.
You don't deserve this.
Most of all, you are not alone.
And a license to violate, to humiliate, to hit and hurt and imprison can be called many things. Sadism, abuse, malevolence...
But don't call it love. Don't ever call it love.
I ache for you. I truly do. But at the same time I marvel that you've emerged with anything resembling self-esteem. All those escape attempts... there's a reason they failed, an that reason may be so that you could tell this story to someone who needs to hear it as much as you needed to tell it.
I hope you're able to find some sort of peace. You've had enough misery for several lifetimes already. Thank you for holding it up for others in the same shape to see. Believe it or not, you've helped someone somewhere today.
Dear God, you have courage! Big cyber hug and my absolute admiration are coming your way... Thanks for sharing...
Ya done good. But reading this makes me want to drive 20 minutes and fight again. I'm not afraid still, and I'm still angry. For both of us. At all of them.
You still are not alone.
'almost not afraid' I am so sorry that you've dealt with this your whole life. Hugs and strength to you.