No matter what kind of abuse or trauma you've been through, we all have the power to write a brave new ending. My personal story is not a pretty one and for far too long, fear and shame kept me small. Abuse will do that to you. I silenced myself because I was afraid of being judged and attacked. More than afraid, I was deeply ashamed.
Here's the truth that no one wants to hear. Abused women (and men) don't just cower in corners. Abuse activates our deepest wounds and deepest rage. When our bodies and minds can no longer bear the burden of being a victim, we learn to fight and we fight with all our might. In the aftermath, we are left with a gaping hole that gets filled with suffocating fear and shame.
Abusers know our triggers - they helped to install them - and they use our triggers to keep us small and silent.
We are told, "No one will believe you." "You are crazy." "It's all your fault." "You made me do that." "If you leave, I will destroy you." So we internalize the abuse and make it mean something about ourselves. Maybe I am crazy. Maybe I am damaged beyond repair. Maybe it is all my fault.
And so we stay. And even when we leave, we still go back, maybe not to the same partner, but to the same pattern.
I went back to the same partner. And when I finally left that partner, I went back to the same pattern. I thought my wounds had healed, only to have them cracked wide open years later. I gave a speech about abuse that over half a million people viewed AND STILL, I went back to the same pattern. How's that for shame?
My new ending puts an end to shame and self-blame. My new ending is built on courage and self-love. My new ending is filled with tools that faciliate healing, emotional resiliency and hope. My new ending debunks the myth that I am broken and uncovers the truth that I am whole.
We are building a community of supportive, empowered survivors-turned-thrivers over at the Purple Dot Yoga Project where your stories are never judged or shamed. The only labels you will find here are COURAGEOUS and LOVED. Because that is what you are.
You are not alone. Together, we rise.