If you are being sexual harassed or abused - please know that many of us are listening and have been there and want to help.
I recently met a wonderful person named Kim O'Hara who has written a book called, "Kicking Abuse in the Ass." It has just been released and it is not only a story of the sexual abuse she endured but an opportunity for her to heal and for others to heal as well. I highly encourage you to buy it if you are struggling or have struggled. But sometimes I think as women we don't reach out because we have decided it makes us weak or we are ashamed to admit that something has happened to us. Isn't this why the now viral, "Me Too" movement has been such a blessing. But I know there are still plenty of women who are afraid or who don't believe anyone would listen. And who could blame them? So many times their concerns, words, cries have fell on deaf ears. I did not discuss my own harassment for years. I somehow didn't think it was a big deal. Until my teenage daughter was astounded that I had fought and won a court battle and never told her. It was an awakening for me to see her pride in my actions - with not a trace of shame - and it helped me start to speak out loud.
In recent years, I have realized if you are a woman in poverty, your voices aren't as loud to those that might help. It's so sad that those of us that have experienced poverty while trying to raise children had their voices muted, but it is even sadder that women of color have even less volume when they speak their words. I am a 50 year old white woman. And I know that because of my skin color I have been able to have options that others haven't. I am still struggling financially and working to find my way, but it makes me very sad that there are people who don't even get those chances. I believe that human is human no matter your color or religion or sexual orientation. And I know to my core that a mother - is a mother that is fighting to make a life for their children that is safe and healthy. So I don't have the means to do a lot, but I am trying to be aware and offer up my voice and support.
And so if you are struggling - no matter who you are - I hope you will reach out and say hello. I am ready to listen and help in any way that I can as another woman that has lived through sexual assault, sexual harassment, poverty, and emotional abuse. I don't care where you are from or what you look like - we are sisters on this earth and I can at the very least hear you and listen. Because speaking about what's happened and finding others to talk to and writing about what you have been through is a start to healing. And if you think that Kim's book will help you - I would be happy to buy you a copy. Because if we each share a little- we can build foundations together within our commonality.
Recovering from abuse is a journey, it will take time and it will be a part of who we are forever. But we can chose what that looks like. I choose to share, to continue to believe there are good people and to keep reaching towards the next day and a better life. I hope you will too!
If you are experiencing abuse - please reach out:
The Los Angeles Rape and Battering hotline is a confidential non-judgmental resource where staff and volunteers are available to provide emotional support, advocacy, information and referrals. If you or someone you care about has been a victim of sexual assault, domestic violence or intimate partner stalking, please call our 24 hour crisis line.
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