Posted by: The Grrl In the Moon | May 21, 2010

Secrets(trigger warning for child molestation)

Today I need to talk about secrets.

There are two types of secrets for me. There are the wonderful secrets; ones that make you feel warm and fuzzy on the inside. The ones where you only have to keep them so long, until you explode and can tell everyone how lucky you are. Likes gifts, finding out you got the job, a pregnancy, a love. Secrets that make you feel good.

But too often secrets are not good ones. Secrets that eat away at you, at your self worth, your confidence, your safety, your ability to love, these unfortunately are the ones I want to talk about. The ones that make you sick.

I don’t have any dark secrets anymore, I tell Mr. D everything. If you don’t have someone that you can be truly honest with, and tell everything too, with no judgement and only love, I hope you find someone like that, be it a friend, a parent, a lover, a help line. Don’t keep those ugly secrets, hell, email them to me, and I will listen and throw them away for you, or try to find a way to heal the ugly secrets. I am the secret keeper for many of my friends, I let them cry and confess to me, with no judgement, and they feel safe knowing, they stay with me.

Dark secrets can destroy you. This I feel is doubly important for teaching your children. I routinely tell my daughters not to keep secrets that make them feel ugly on the inside. My eldest Jane, I have a lot more in depth conversations with her being 18. We have a lot of back and forth about life, and sometimes, I just listen. Jane is becoming such an amazing young woman, I see her blossom everyday. She used to hate herself because of her weight, not being a toothpick. Now, I see her becoming comfortable in her body, and starting to love it, nothing has really changed but her view point. It makes me so proud of her. Sometimes it is hard for me to hear of her life when she was very young, she lived with her mother, who she loved, but that was an alcoholic. When she tells me that at 8 she found her mother passed out in the bathroom, naked. She went and got a blanket and covered her. I know for Mr. D this is hard to hear, he didn’t know how bad it was until she came to live with him. At 11, she lost her eldest brother to suicide. I can’t even explain what that did to her. But I hold it for her, and I am so proud to see what she is becoming. To see shine brighter everyday with confidence.

Secrets are more difficult with the younger girls. Laura, now 8, has brought new meaning to this for me. She had a secret when she was 3, and we didn’t find out, until it happened again at 4. Laura was molested, by a family member, we think. See, because she was so young, when she finally told her mother. We were unable to come up with concrete proof as to who did it. The person that Laura accused was able to pass a lie detector. I still remember this time with clarity, the pain can hide, but it never goes away. To this day I keep the file number safe, just in case we can prove something. It doesn’t matter, in the end, I will always feel like I failed her because we couldn’t put that person behind bars. I know, some of you will say, that I didn’t. That we tried, but as one of her protectors. I did fail that time.

Laura doesn’t remember that now, consciously anyway. I still do see the repercussions of it, some of her behaviours. That I am hyperaware of the Laura and Freya’s sexuality because I am constantly trying to make sure I never miss the smallest sign again. I won’t fail again.

So I talk to them every couple of months. I tell them that secrets should make them happy, not sad. That no matter what anyone tells them, if a secret makes them feel yucky on the inside that it shouldn’t be kept, for them to tell a safe adult, like their mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, teacher. Whomever they feel safe telling, also I tell them that at this time their body is theirs, that no one should be touching it at this point unless there is a reason, such as if they’ve hurt themselves, or a doctor needs too look. That, this may change when they are older, but I will talk to them in a couple of years about it. That if they have questions I will answer them, what I can. This is a simplified version, I try and keep the conversation open, and simplify topics, I try and stay away from cutesy words, but I also let them lead the conversation.

I hope, you talk to your children about secrets, and I hope you can talk to someone about them as well.
Cheers.

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