"Feeling Grief" Watercolor Art by Srimati
The greatest struggle of the abused or neglected child isn't just coming back to safety, back into their body in a safe and rooted way. It's also the moral conflict they struggle within being seen in their history and truth amongst a world that would prefer they remain silent.
I was told by my older sister to never write about or talk to others about what happened to me as a child because it was her story too.
I was told to be silent and not speak about these things to anyone publicly. This affected me for many years because I was passionate about advocating and ministering to those who struggled through childhood trauma and abuse, and her words became like a muzzle. I feared that every time I spoke to someone about it, I was doing her wrong. I now see it the other way. By remaining silent about childhood abuse, we are perpetuating the very things that create it. There is a price to be paid and we must be brave enough to pay the one that will lead to our healing and freedom, not the one that perpetuates the abuse cycle and the shame that survivors feel over what happened to them.
Silence is the oppression of evil. Evil does not want you to speak. For if you speak, it means it can no longer hide in dark places and when it is brought into the light it will cease to be what it was.
Silence is a form of violence used by those who protect abusers, those who are trauma bonded to abusive parents and ostracize a sibling who dares come forward with the desire to face the trauma, speak the truth, and heal. This violence can be crippling and cause a person to doubt their choice to speak as being good.
Consider that these children will likely have a side of themselves completely unknown by their family. If they are moving through psychotherapy and counseling, they will likely have to keep this healing a secret. On social media, they will be entangled in family connections and will not be able to easily publicly speak about and advocate for their cause. If their parent was abusive, but the extended family was not, the child may feel shame in outing a parent to their extended family and may feel that in order to heal and live and speak freely as they desire, they will have to cut ties to the entire family.
They will have to make a morally conflicting choice between their *healing and self-recovery, self-expression, desire for witnessing, and having their emotional needs met in a relationship* and keeping their family comfortable for the sake of belonging or to not destroy the family.
If they make the choice to stay and be silent, their unheard voice may end being what haunts them the most.