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Shame and Telling-My Thoughts

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#31 Guest__*

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Posted 08 June 2001 - 02:50 PM

That was empowering! Naming things gives us control over them and legitimizes them...and that's what we all need to do.
I don't have a printer, so I might download it and keep it in my PalmPilot.

#32 Guest_crying angel_*

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Posted 10 June 2001 - 04:17 PM

I second Amie!!

This is amazing...I was having a really crap day and it's made me feel empowered all over again.

I've made a personal decision. I have a couple of friends who I've been talking to a bit more about my abuse/rape issues and the next time we discuss it I'm going to call it by its name. I know they're not embarrassed and ashamed, they've told me so, so in that safe place I'm going to stretch my wings a bit.

Thanks guys for writing such encouraging words.

It does feel like we're moving forward.

Take special care
Crying Angel

#33 Guest__*

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Posted 20 June 2001 - 09:30 PM

Just an update...

I am breaking the silence...

I will be having my photograph taken for the "Faces of Sexual Assault" project this weekend.  (Of course my adolescent acne is kicking in!)

Also, I am speaking with my counselor about ways to speak out, including speaking to HS seniors, both males and females.

Love to you all


#34 Guest__*

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Posted 06 July 2001 - 02:54 AM

***t*** SWEARING
Mistral, my darling, you couldn't believe how much your sentiments echo my own. Yes, we do live in an an alternately genital obsessed/genital fearful society. The way some people respond when the word "rape" is used is roughly the same way they would react if you showed them what you found up your nose. They back off as if it will get on them somehow. Is it any f*cking wonder we internalize the shame--it is everywhere.
When I think about the ridiculous euphemisms I used to use to describe the sexual abuse I have experienced, I could laugh. My poor therapist had a devil of a time working out what I was on about and often called me on "prettifying" the horros of my life. But I just couldn't use, or wear, that word. I had to be extremely drunk before I could.
Now, I just go with Louise Armstrong, Author of "Kiss Daddy goodnight"--she states that rape is easier to say and spell than diarrhoea--#### right. I just use the word and if other people have a problem with it, stiff shit.
It's really empowering.

That was an excellent piece of writing.

Love you

Rachel xxx

#35 Guest__*

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Posted 06 July 2001 - 02:33 PM

I am awed by you, Mistral. Awed.
My mind keeps going back to an earlier post of yours in which you state yopu attended a family function and were totally honest about your rape. You gobsmack me.
I may have a tough stance around the "r" word now, but it took me a very long time. The way I used to talk about it, you would have thought it was a "minor inconvenience" carrying no greater impact than having the peas boil over. In some setings, I still have to grind the word out.
And Mistral, I am so glad you can tell people to imagine your discomfort. Did you, or anyone else here, ever have a time of feeling as if you, the person who had been raped, had to be responsible for administering assurance, comfort and support to those you told?
I used to tell, then offer them tea and sympathy for being horrible enough to have told them about something they obviously just couldn't handle. But part of me, if it could have, would have chosen to scream your words at them, Mistral--"If you feel this way, how the #### do you think I feel?"
It's wonderful not to own that anymore. It's also terrific not to need to be believed. I was raped, I was hurt by it, I don't give a flying f*ck whether anyone likes it or not; I didn't like it either. And if people think it's not "nice" ,well, neither is being raped.
Feminist writer Susan Brownmiller says that rape is a blunt, ugly act worthy of a blunt, ugly name.
Couldn't agree more. But I not only feared using the word because I was too ashamed of other's opinions, but I was also scared that it "dirtied" ME more, if that makes sense.

This fear of using the word is something I have encountered again and again.
***NICA*** The role of a therapist is particularly important in "modelling" certain things to a client. I'm feeling quite cranky that yours is modelling shame and mawkishness to you around naming your rapist's crime for what it is. Guy needs a wake-up call.

Love to all, and to you, Mistral my courageous and thought-provoking friend.

Rachel xxx

#36 Guest__*

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Posted 18 July 2001 - 12:11 PM

Wow, Mistral...thank you for cutting through all the BS.  Thank you for validating us all.  Every survivor and supporter should read your post!  You rock, girl!


#37 Guest__*

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Posted 19 July 2001 - 08:05 AM

I don't know what to say, that was beautiful.  It gave me the strength I was looking for.  Thank you so much.

#38 Guest__*

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Posted 21 July 2001 - 09:09 AM

Amazing, amazing, amazing.  You all have me completely awe-struck and inspired.  I had no idea there was this huge thread going on that reflected exactly what's been plaguing me in my own brain!

Is it Rape?


Sexual Assault?

What's the difference?  Rape is an ugly blunt word, how perfectly described by Ms. Brownmiller.  And Mistral, when you said to say to people, "if rape makes you feel uncomfortable, imagine how it makes me feel", you just blew my mind.  Imagine that WE are the ones who feel we need to comfort others for having the gall to bring up this life-shattering experience?  

Oh, pardon me, I'm soooo sorry to have dirtied your mind with my life!!!  

That's how it feels!  Even with the best-intentioned of people.  Like yesterday, when I asked my husband not to joke about certain things pertaining to sex, and he got all pouty and said, "Am I going to have to live my life walking on eggshells?"  He's as supportive as one could be, but even he can be so hurtful.

Somehow saying "sexual assault" seems to clean it up a bit.  I can imagine telling people about one of those, but not about a dirty rape.  Am I being untrue to myself by using different words?  Eventually, "sexual assault" just becomes "the assault", and the sexual element is taken out of it.  Is that creating even more of a lie?  Or does it enable me to talk about it more freely, hence ending the silence albeit not as perfectly as I'd like?

You all are the rocks of the universe.

safe hugs,


#39 Guest_sharon 13_*

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Posted 06 August 2001 - 09:31 AM

Thank you for bringing this post up to the top - you are SO Strong and powerful just for writing what you wrote...It still is difficult for me to look in the mirror and say "I was raped" - i just hate that word...and Rachel's analogy to diaorrhea (sp?) just proves my point - rape is an easy word to say, easy to spell and just as easy to ignore.  You are right, and I will start speaking out, in fact I am going back to my old high school to talk to the teachers and see what sort of feed back I get from them...Thank you for your strong words.
With Love,

#40 Guest__*

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Posted 14 February 2002 - 11:19 PM

Thaml you!  This has given me the courage to tell my friends "face to face" after 16 years of silence.........I think.  I am going to try tomorrow night.  You are so wonderful.  I am in awe of you and in awe of you and in awe of you!



#41 Guest__*

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Posted 04 January 2003 - 10:09 AM

Hi John,

Welcome to Pandy's.  I am so sorry that you have a reason to be here, but I am glad that you have found this wonderful place.

There are many posts on this board that discuss similar experiences.  You are not alone.

Take good care of yourself, and please visit often.

#42 Guest__*

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Posted 08 June 2001 - 04:25 PM


I LOVE IT, I LOVE IT, I LOVE IT, I LOVE IT!!  Boy, do I ever feel our power growing these days!  This is sooooooo #### cool!  We are finally shouting out and silencing our abusers!!

I hope you don't mind..I've saved your speech to help me with a support group I'm forming!  I'm so proud of you...didn't that feel wonderful getting it out!

Stay empowered always!!!
Love to all!

#43 Guest__*

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Posted 06 July 2001 - 12:10 PM

Good for you Nica!  I agree with Rachel.  What a strong person you are to make your therapist confront the word.

Thanks Rachel.  Sometimes I even get a small perverse kick out of making people face the fact that I was raped.  *evil grin*

I just hate the fact that since my genitals were abused, I can't talk about it in polite society.  So I do anyway, cause I'm nice like that.  I just tell people, "If the word rape makes you uncomfortable, then think about how uncomfortable it's made me."

With love,

#44 Guest__*

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Posted 18 July 2001 - 12:37 PM

Thank you so much Mistral.  I can't even express how I feel after reading that.  It is so touching and I have to say this, Thank you, Thank You, Thank you,  (((HUGS)))

#45 Guest__*

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Posted 07 February 2002 - 01:19 PM

This seems to have vanished from wonderful threads [or I'm blind and stupid - one of the two] so boosting it up to see if it reappears.



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