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Minx, from Poly Weekly, talks about “owning your shit.” This is the idea of getting to the root of your feelings and actually dealing with them.


Ma’at: Goddess of truth, harmony, and justice

It’s taken me a little time to figure this out.  I thought I was hurt and angry because I’d been lied too.  But that’s not really it. Yes, I’m hurt.  I thought this person wanted to be friends.  Her actions say otherwise.

So I’m hurt. But I’m also upset with myself.  Bear with me for this.  A potential friend has decided to date/become romantically involved with my abusive Ex.  Yes, I told her. In fact, her burgeoning involvement made me disclose the extent of the abuse.  I spoke out because I wanted to warn her.  She told me that she doesn’t believe me. I guess I didn’t say the right things or act the right way to sound like someone abused.

image of a woman's lips with the word.
My greatest fear in disclosing abuse is not being believed. 24 years ago, I told my mother I’d been raped. She called me a liar.  My older sister brought my rapist to my workplace because *she* was still friends with him, and I was a liar.  She told me I must be lying because she saw me hanging out at a park near his house.  After that, I never told anyone the truth.  19 years ago, I asked my friends for help with a stalker boyfriend. I didn’t tell them about the physical abuse – and there’s no way I could have told them about the rape.  Last year, I told a friend and the stalker Ex.  I want to think she didn’t consider her words when she said “he wouldn’t have done that.” Maybe she was processing it.  To me it felt like another person doubting me.  I told another friend and got a similar response.  So how could I tell anyone, ever?

The first time I told my husband and my past was over a year ago.  When he and I started marriage counseling, our therapist asked admit our histories.  I decided in that moment to tell the truth.  Telling *anyone* that my Ex had been abusive was tremendously difficult for me.  I assumed no one would believe me, or that is be told I was overreacting or misinterpreting (years of gas lighting take their toll).  But I told the truth, and so many of the people in my life were wonderful and kind and understanding and supportive.  And I felt better for speaking out.  Being called a liar, again, hurts.

But I’m also upset – and I don’t know a better word then that. I’m upset because I realize that I don’t want to be around her.  Not because I’m angry. Not because I’m jealous. But because I do not trust myself to be able to be kind to her.  I do not trust myself to be supportive when he inevitably abuses her (and while I hope he doesn’t, research shows that without help abusers just keep on abusing).

I like to think of myself as an ally.  I like to think that I am supportive of other women.  So it upsets me recognize that I don’t think, in this case, that I can be.

So I’ve owned my shit.  I’ve gotten to the roots of my feelings.  A small part is about her actions. A larger part is my own past, and none of that has to do with her.  The final piece is about my own expectations for myself – and I cannot be all “love and light” ask the time. I can choose to distance myself from people engaging in behaviour that hurts me – that choice didn’t make me a bad person, it makes me a person engaging in self care (or so my husband tells me).

While I hope that her choices do not end in her being harmed, I hope that I can reach a place where I can be supportive of they do.

img_0221 Klimt’s “Nuda Veritas”