This morning I spoke with one of my daughters, and despite several recent disappointments, I was able to just listen. Several times I heard her exhale, and each time, I was grateful for the opportunity as her mother, to be there and support her. I see her awareness growing, and her resolve to be part of the solution in her family problems, instead of part of the problem.
As she shared with me her concern for her family and particularly a sister of hers, I felt a shift in the burden that I've carried for so long. I was able to share with her important parts of her family history so she could understand her life and what is before her.
I told her I suddenly felt this was like Easter Sunday. A resurrection of hope, or hope of something better. It is March 10, 2013, the first day of Daylight Savings time, and Women's Day.
Upon checking the news this Sunday morning, I saw a story of young girls who have made a difference in their communities, standing up for the rights and dignity, safety, lives and futures of other young women, against all odds, threats to their lives, etc. I am proud to share this story with you, below.
I hope you find it as much of an honor as I did, to see the courage these young girls have had to stand up and make changes in harmful cultural traditions, where life has been devalued. It brings me to tears as a woman, a mother, a Social Worker, and human being.
I think it is time for women to speak up, not back down, and create necessary world changes for the betterment of humanity. Strong leadership, honesty and fearless action is needed to break the stench of sexual predatory behavior everywhere for every son and daughter, to end abuses of power, monetary gain through the enslavement, harm and death of others with legal and illegal drugs, to replace or remove prisons, government, religious and all other social institutions that are corrupt and self-serving. We mothers do not feed, clothe, protect and educate our children to be used for the selfish intentions of others. The infinite hours of our service are not intended to provide victims to predators, but to see our children grow up innocent and free, to choose their particular mark on this world.
I recently read where the US Military has 20,000 rapes reported....per year. 40% of the victims are male. The Military leaders have 'discretion' (because this institution or club has their own rules) in the actions taken, no Sex Offender registration is done when these predators get out of the military and the charges are minimized to 'adultery', or lesser charges.
Now. What does this tell you about the minimization or covering up of sexual abuse from predators in the military? Could it be any different than the Catholic or Mormon Church or other hierarchal churches or organizations? Now, let me plant a seed. What covering up has been done with child molestation in the Military, and what needs to be done?
When I hear that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys are sexually violated in America, I cringe, because I know that is a lie. It is much higher. Our children are filling the prisons, the juvenile detention institutions, the foster care system, the inadequate drug and alcohol treatment agencies, the runaways and homeless, and the suicide statistics-both physical suicide and the wasted gifts they've been given that are killed in the confusion and anguish as they deal with destroyed trust, misplaced anger, sexual arousal and gender identification issues, and misguided guilt that are too often unrecognized and quietly buried. Is this really what all the oatmeal and sacrifice is meant for?
10% or so of any population is biologically homosexual, or so the college biology classes taught. The percentage of our population in some gender identification is not important, or the 'shades of gray'. What is important to me, is to see children maintain their integrity and innocence, instead of having to respond from harm. With the hormone mimickers of plastics and chemicals and medications contaminating our water supply and foods, both animals and humans are suffering birth defects and changes. Viva le difference, as the Native Americans are said to honor those among them.
This is a sensitive subject, but it needs to be confronted. When the level of sexual contamination and violation has hijacked the sexual arousal patterns and gender identification patterns, so our children don't have a chance in hell to develop their birthright sexuality normally, on their own, we are creating isolation and sadness when what is left surrounding us is the question, of whom can we trust? Why should all or most of our children and grandchildren be Survivors, adjusting to their harm? Some choose not to bring children into this world, because of this growing possibility of harm. What are we accepting as a society, because we seem not to be able to stem the harm?
Who has been in charge of watching the henhouse? How effective are laws where only 2-3% of adult rapes are ever convicted, and children are supposed to have a chance at justice, acknowledgment and healing? Is the condition of our world meant to be, or have we dropped the ball and lost the fight? These are things I wonder about. Punishment is not the answer. What will it take to heal us?
As a Social Work Practicum student, I worked in an Advocacy Agency in Texas for the worst sexually and physically abused kids. The gal who ran the place told me she didn't want any feedback. When a mother called to report her daughter had named the mom's partner as molesting her, and Child Services wouldn't do anything, and they were in crisis because the man was due back, this Agency Director didn't offer much advice. When she hung up, she said if it were her child, she'd call till she reached a Supervisor that listened, but "she wasn't going to tell the woman that".
The Police unit, DA's rep, Child Services and Director all housed in the Advocacy Center, were present at the staff meeting while staff laughed at the young mentally challenged boy whose grandfather was sodomizing him and who had 'funneling' in his lower bowel. It seemed that they wanted to put it in the 'not enough evidence' pile. A witness that wasn't credible. They laughed again at the father of an infant who turned himself in to get help. I heard this same man later that night in a group in the community admit to sexually abusing children when he was a juvenile. He had come for help.
Freda Briggs (Senior Australian of the Year (2000) and long-term advocate for children) wrote the book 'From Victim to Offender' in which the men she interviews speak about these same attitudes when they'd even turn themselves in. The term 'consensual' was used in this staff meeting, with the young girl who was offered drugs by her grooming stepfather, when now to get them, she had to do sexual favors.
There was no resource to put in the 'Resource Manual' for families, (one of my assigned projects), to use the Crime Victimization Compensation Fund. No therapist, individual or group setting, etc. The place was open Mon-Fri, 9-5, and Friday, the office was mostly empty after noon, including the office of Child Protective Services, as if molestation didn't occur after Friday at noon, or on the weekend. A real dedicated bunch. Young girls who had never had children were the interviewers and those who decoded the videos for Child Services.
80+% of adult offenders began as juveniles. 25% minimum of males that are abused, offend others. Do you know the concept of multiplication and duplication, like the Amway circles presentation? If you do, please put this unspoken epidemic back into the equations of your cultural vista, to understand your world.
Questions and comments welcome below. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or at email@example.com