Last night I had therapy. This morning I feel like hiding in my bed until... well, for a very long time. Last night I talked about all of the things I LEAST 'LIKE' to talk about. And by 'least like' I really mean: HATE. The things I HATE to talk about. I started thinking yesterday maybe I should write something everyday for a while about being an incest survivor too. A lot of people come to this blog because of searching for something about incest and I know when I have googled 'incest'- well it is still hard to find helpful information and/or good blogs. This also makes me think I should put links here to helpful sites. I have a lot of good blogs that I read every day; a bunch by other sexual abuse survivors. Few things are more encouraging to me than 1. other artists making their work and 2. other sexual abuse survivors who are recovering or recovered from the abuse. I have been thinking about changing my blog so I can include a list of links to websites that I like- both informational ones, art ones and bloggy ones. I am in the process of finding a good template to change my blog to- so I am trying to work that out. I feel like I should do something more helpful by putting together a list of sites that are at least useful to me. So then if people get to this blog because they are looking for USEFUL information about sexual abuse, incest or being a survivor- they will find something more than a huge explosion of paint and pain on a wall called 'grenade'. Yikes. I am going to start trying to figure out a different look for my blog and something where I can put all of the helpful sites that I know of. In the meanwhile- here is a link to a blog I just recently started reading. It is written by a woman who writes about herself by starting with this sentence, "I am a trauma and long-time extreme PTSD survivor." Her blog is here and it is called: Parasites of the mind. At first the title of her blog really bothered me... even with the interesting and intelligent explanation of where it comes from, "When Charcot (1887) first described traumatic memories over a century ago, he called them ‘parasites of the mind.’". Then I started to realize I did not like the title because I am having so much pain and rage and sadness from all of my own traumatic memories.
One more thing quick: I always thought I hated the word 'incest' because incest was something so disgusting... and dirty and gross and sick and twisted and awful. Then I got to therapy and started telling my doctor all of the things my father had done to me and one day he said, "There is a word..." AND I THOUGHT, "NOT THAT WORD." Incest. Right. And the reason I hate it it is not because of 'the word'... but BECAUSE OF ITS MEANING. AND: It REALLY scares me how much of a negative connotation there is attached to that word. Because the negative connotation is not: Sexual abusers are criminals. It is more like: Incest is dirty and 'people involved with incest are dirty'. And so I am here to say this morning: INCEST IS NOT DIRTY. SEXUAL ABUSERS ARE SICK. People that abuse children and/or other people are unhealthy. And people that are abused by them are neither dirty nor bad. People abused by sexual abusers are neither dirty nor bad- they are wounded. Wounded and hurt and angry and sad.
For a long time I have wanted to make a t-shirt with the word INCEST in huge red letters and then something written below it like, "If the word 'incest' scares you... IMAGINE HOW A SEXUAL ABUSE SURVIVOR FEELS." Or something like that. I usually imagine the following, actually,
"If the word INCEST scares you, imagine how I feel." Or something like that.
One final thought: This post feels messy and not so well written and I have been going back and editing what I have written and I am not trying to suggest I know much about these things or that my blog or art can help or not help people. I am just trying to say this:
I am a woman who survived 14 years of incest and abuse and today I want to hide in bed with my 2 cats but I am not going to. I am going to go out into the world and live and make my artwork and be real and alive.