Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Sometimes it hard to know...

A few days after that nitwit Senator Akin made his infamous speech on rape, I felt the need to voice my opinion about it on beloved Facebook. Now this posting is not going to rehash what I said, other than to say that in the middle of my post, I hinted at being raped a very long time ago. I only really admitted it to emphasize that I did in fact know how it feels and wasn't responding to the Senator's speech just on impulse. I purposely did not give any details other than to say that "it happened to me." It happened just before high school graduation and it was date rape, which is why I never breathed a word to anyone. I have managed to work through whatever it is you work through in instances like this, and however successfully I've rebuilt my life "post-event" may still be up for debate 30 years later. I posted on FB because I was taken by surprise the feelings the speech brought back to my forebrain. Not in feeling scared or angry but I guess a sense of indignance and scorn for the insensitivity of his words. I expressed my opinion, logged off and was done with it again. A few days later (I am not FB's bestest member) I logged back in and my wall was literally plastered with RADICAL ANGRY postings from people (mostly women) I had never heard of.

There's one thing I need to confess right here and now. I tend not to be very vocal about my feelings and beliefs among people I don't know well, but that doesn't mean I don't have strong feelings at all. I have come to know who I can share my opinions with and who I would do better to drive off a cliff than to try and engage in conversation or debate on a particular subject. Again, it doesn't mean I don't shout at the top of my inner lungs about certain things I feel strongly about, but how and when and to whom I divulge these to depends entirely on who they are and our shared history together.

Having said that, FB is not a place I tend to share much in the way of my political and theological/spiritual or philosophical stances, whether friend, or family or FB "friend". I use FB to connect w/family that is far away and real friends from my real life that I don't see as much anymore.

Ok, to these postings from peeps unknown...My God!!!! I have never read such fierce rantings since reading Meine Kampf all those years ago! It was all from people who are vigilant and militant against rape and rapists and justice and injustice in the legal system around the world. I had NO idea how I got attached on FB to this group, but there were so many postings by this group that all of the postings from  those I care about were literally pushed down off the page! I was nervous that I would never be able to recover the sometimes silly, sometimes inane, mostly entertaining posts from the people I WANTED to hear from. At the bottom of the screen of feminazi men-hating people, was an indication that there is an organized group on FB called WAR (women against rape) and that I was one of its "newest" members!! I was pissed!!! And then I saw the profile pic of one of my friends from high school who I had reconnected with just the past June at our HS reunion. I think he may've "invited" me to join this group (and on FB, I don't think you have to respond to the invitation in order to "join" the group.) I think it was done with the best of intentions, but it's just not "how I roll" about things. I found the button to "unjoin" this group and I clicked it and voila!! My silly and charming and entertaining group of family and friends were instantly back!!

I guess I was mad at this group of people because they made an assumption about where I am in the recovery process. I long ago forgave the creep, I pray that he did not follow his "calling" into the Baptist Seminary, and that there's nobody else that this happened to in his wake. I am grateful I have been able to establish and maintain relatively healthy relationships with a very select few men in my life since then, but most importantly, I have long ago forgiven myself for the naivety of being 18 years old. I made some reckless decisions that night, and I take responsibility for that. In the end, what I long to tell this group of people who are so vehemently engaged in this WAR, is that I have made my peace with what happened that night, and have no desire to constantly revisit and relive the event just for a reason to shake my fist defiantly in the air. I am fully aware that there is nothing to be done to the creep legally, and getting emotionally twisted in knots about that doesn't change it.

My heart does break for those women and men who suffer the horrificness of rape and especially for those who for whatever reason cannot or will never get the justice they so rightly deserve. I applaud those who tirelessly work towards improving the justice system around the world and who are amazing advocates for human rights and victim recovery everywhere. There are angels among us who selflessly work for very good outcomes and many who do so without blinking twice or skipping a beat. And if my friend from HS was a victim himself, I know God knows his pain and I pray that he feel God's presence with him on his journey towards healing as He was with me on my own.

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