Speak UP!

Just had one session with 19 year old girls on how to respond to trauma and assaults that happen on routine basis. What do you do if a person tries to invade her personal physical space? Say, inappropriate language or visuals or physical behavior?
 
Speak up and tell that person you are behaving inappropriately, or you don’t like what the person is doing, so please don’t do it. Don’t yell or abuse at the assaulter. Be polite and respectfully engage with him or her in a loud voice. And if this does not work, scream your guts out and use your tongue as a weapon. Or based on the severity of the misbehavior, a physical defense is warranted. Most often matters do get sorted at the instance of the event.
 
The point is girls must be taught not to wait to respond. If a physically or verbally or visually inappropriate behavior happens, the girl must course correct that person on instance 1. It’s very important to teach this idea of polite but an offensive engagement with her opponent. Physical and emotional assaults happen every other day to all women. And we must respond to each and every instance with the idea of immediate self preservation.
 
Escalation comes in when problem is repeated and not resolved. But if we encourage our girls to own their spaces and shut down microscopic invasions, they will be able the deal with more severe assaults too. As human beings jostle for space in this world, the friction is most natural. The idea of protecting one’s personal space is an everyday one. And also about how to read the situation and square offthe inappropriateness.
 
At every instance, it’s not just the physical evidence that matters but also intent behind that evidence. A touch can feel sexual and look sexual but intent may be platonic. There are so many nuances to this. Bottomline is we need to tell not just our girls but our boys, if you don’t like something happening to you, speak up. There and then. Don’t wait.
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Can you attempt to lead a normal life after years of abuse?

Can you attempt to lead a normal life after years of abuse? Whether it is sexual, physical or emotional, is there hope for victims of personal and domestic violence. Yes. There can be a skeleton of normalcy at least. And with self awareness, medication and support, you can begin to deal with what you have gone through. Can you move past it? Not really. The memories stay with you forever. The guilt, the shame, the fear it runs parallel to more positive emotions. And many a times it overwhelms the better senses and manifests in different forms of self abuse. But with proper pain management even these can be tackled. Not removed completely but managed. And even after that, every day is an uphill battle to stay sane. To not give into one’s demons. To stay positive and do what regular people do.

The victim in this article is now a professor at Georgetown University in USA. For her to be alive and well is an achievement. For her to be a professor, is even more phenomenal. Pain changes you. It makes you see your insides. And if you can create courage, you can build yourself into a better human being than what you were born to become. That’s the power of self. To all those going through hell in their lives, keep the faith. There is a better you and better life out there. #eksaathfoundation

Words can kill, without leaving any evidence

Dealing with emotional abuse is battle of the mind. And if one can’t fight it then it destabilizes the victim and the victims children as well. Its insidious and it must be cut off at the source with appropriate responses. A critical response to emotional abuse is to disconnect oneself from what is being thrown at you.

Most emotional abusers count on victims accepting what is being said, without using their own reason and logic. If a victim can delink herself emotionally from the abuse hurled, and the abuser, she will be able to handle him better. The day she starts showing spine, the abuser will start responding differently.

An idealistic situation is to exit. But many women don’t or can’t due to many reasons known to them. So response management becomes crucial in tackling this. To get trapped in why me and why he is doing it, is a waste of time. Most abusers don’t feel that they are doing anything wrong and that their actions are not abusive. Say a slap to the victim is for her own good.

The only focus for victims is to protect their sanity. Not fix the abuser. And if there are children then it becomes more critical that the abuse is managed or cut as quickly as possible before the kids start realizing that something wrong is happening. Always remember words can kill, without leaving any evidence. 

Mothers in domestic violence ignore health of children

In an Eye Camp conducted by Eksaath Foundation, 6 children were diagnosed with dry optic nerve. Parents were advised to seek medical attention. Parents of two boys got their sons treated immediately.

Follow ups were done with other parents by the school principal and Eksaath. However, parents of 3 girls did not seek any medical advise. After repeated follow ups, we met the mothers of two girls.

We found that these two ladies (on the right) were victims of domestic violence. The reason why they would not take their daughters to even do preliminary examination, is because they could not do so. They both had told their husbands to take the girls for a check up and both husbands said they were too busy to do so.

Eksaath asked them if the husband raised his hands on them? Yes. The mothers understood the repercussion of not taking seeking medical help for their daughters and the damage that could happen to the eyes. Yet, fear of violence from the husband, stopped them from taking any steps.

For women in violence, the only goal is the survival of self. If they can get through that, it’s a very big thing. Kids grow up just like that. Education, health is on the back burner. For girls in poor families, it becomes more difficult when men flutter around like vultures. And if the girl has vision loss? Remains uneducated? One can only imagine what can happen. Or one dare not imagine what could happen!!!

 

Abuse and self destruction are linked..

If your parents have been mean to you (abusive) in any way when you were a kid, you will self destruct in adult hood. That is the way the cookie always crumbles.

Acknowledge the pain that you feel. Talk about it with your parents. Say – “You did this to me and it made me feel like crap”. If your parents acknowledge the wrong that they did to you, great. That’s the first step towards fixing your fucked up life. If they don’t. Acknowledge it to yourself. That what happened in your childhood did happen. And is still happening to you. And all your behaviour as adult is in response to perhaps what happened to you as a child.

There is a deep connection between the abuse that happens in ones childhood and the abuse one does to others or to oneself as an adult. The only way is to not rationalise it. To accept it as causation. Sometimes the effects of what one goes through as a kid, starts showing up decades later. Just like that.

To understand what one does now, one has to understand what happened to one, then. The past can be a great teacher. Don’t shove it under the carpet. Don’t hide from it. Acknowledge it. And perhaps then it will start letting you go and free you.

Some scary folks are fabulous!

 

Not all scary looking people are scary. Who are they. These rugged intimidating folks are bikers and belong to the organisation, Bikers Against Child Abuse (B.A.C.A.). The group protects children in abusive situations.

For children/women of abuse people like the ones in the picture are a godsend. For the victim, sometimes a little courage and support from someone on the outside, stops the process of abuse.

Most of the time, outsiders, neighbours, relatives etc think – its a personal matter, why interfere ? THIS thinking is what needs to be rethought. Its not a personal matter when some man or woman beats or tortures his or her family members. You supporting or standing up for the victim may not, at that point, do any good. But sometimes this in itself can trigger a self preservation mode in the victim and the victim gets divine courage to fight back.

So if you are in the vicinity of someone getting slapped around, don’t walk away, don’t close your door, don’t say its not your problem. Even the slightest of support can save someone’s life. (Picture Source : bacaworld.org)

Should you stay with abuser, so you can become strong?!?

Should you go back to your former abuser so that you can deal with the abuse better or train yourself emotionally to strengthen yourself and get your power back? In an abusive situation, most often the abused victim loses a sense of self and ability to judge. If you go back to an environment that strips one of self respect, it’s humanly impossible to get your emotional balance back, without serious emotional support and guidance. It’s not advisable to do what this article states because it could be physically dangerous.

Especially, if kids are involved, there is no room for experimentation. It’s a straight exit from the physical confines of the abuse. Unless the abuser shows drastic positive change, there is no room for contact. Even then there is a period of probation. The rules of custody or shared parenting will apply at some places. And the mother has to deal with the child still being trapped in the abusive cycle, which perhaps the courts cannot see.

Nothing is more gutting and damaging than verbal abuse. And for a mother/parent to see the child go through it, is hell. But how you (mother/parent) deal with it or respond to the abuse from the other parent, even remotely, will impact how your child will deal with it when he or she is actually going through it.

A parent who no longer has to deal with the abuse in person, still goes through it, through their child. What can you do? Practice being unemotional and teach your kid to be so too. Do yoga, meditate, take therapy so that you remain calm at all times. How you respond will determine how your child will respond. So if you pretend it does not matter, your child will be able to deal with it much much better. The idea to be projected is, what the abusive parent does, does not matter. Water of a ducks back, so to speak.

Teach your child to hear the abuse, but not process it. Practice positive body language, for example, teach your kid to behave positively to show the abusive parent is the greatest. No need to prove a point or be antagonistic, that parent is always right. Reduce friction. The goal should be to manage the interaction between the abusive parent and your child. Even remotely. Easy to do? No. But with practice, you will be able to keep the abusive parent in a normal mood. The goal should be to make your child emotionally stronger, so that he or she can deal with the parent and be physically safe, if nothing else.