I wish I had someone to say these words to me each time it happened. As a survivor, I struggle on a daily basis to get through and move on. Most of the time, I feel like a child trapped in an adult's body, physically aging but not growing as a person. Your words has given me a hand up from the deep hole I've dug myself into. Too many emotions and not eloquent at expressing what I feel now.
I would like to share something with everyone who is reading this. I recently saw a film called "Dolphin Boy" (2011) about a teenager who was kidnapped and assaulted by a group of "male relatives" over an innocent text message to a female classmate.
Here's a synopsis of the documentary:
"Morad,a teenager from an Arab village in the north of Israel, disconnects himself from humans after experiencing a violent attack. As a last resort before hospitalisation in a mental institution, he is taken by his devoted father to be treated with the dolphins in Eilat. Morad starts speaking again after months of silence, but he erases his past and refuses to go home to his waiting mother. Filmed over 4 years, this documentary traces the devastating havoc that human violence can wreak upon the human soul and the healing powers of nature and love."
In the film, when Morad first 'recovers' from a catatonic state, he completely represses the life he had as a person before the assault, and identifies himself as a newborn with the dolphins as his family. It took him 4 years to reconnect his past and present identities before he could return to his village and family, and testify as a witness so that the people responsible could be charged and sentenced in court. It is amazing to watch his story unfold. Though he says in the film that some good things have happened to him because of the attack, but it doesn't heal (he is still struggling with nightmares and flashbacks), his choices and actions are of someone who is continuing his life marathon.
Any act of violence or abuse or rape "kills" essential pieces of our soul and identity. It is good to share stories about survivors who have gotten up after the fall.
If you see a screening for this film, you might want go for it.