Sexual AbusePosted on October 14, 2014 by Ines
A Personal Update
This weekend was a very important one for me. I completed filming a documentary film about sexual abuse, which will focus on the life of a woman who was sexually molested between the ages of 4 and 5 years of age, sexually abused at the age of 12 and years later her daughter is sexually abused by a man she lived with for 5 years.
For those of you that have just started reading this blog recently, the woman in the film is myself. I ran away from home at 16 because of very abusive parents and started a very difficult life not knowing anything, without any survival skills or self esteem. It was a long journey, a painful journey, one that has made me what I am today. I am grateful for the experiences, it has humbled me and given me courage to change what I can change and not worry about things I can’t change.
Working on this documentary was very emotional, not because of the past and what happened, I had resolved all the emotions tied to the past long ago, but I haven’t looked back for so long I didn’t realize I had climbed the 1000 steps, looking down from the top of the mountain was an incredible reminder of just how far I had climbed and wasn’t even aware of it because I was too busy looking forward all the time. For the first time in my life I cried with joy, it was a confirmation that I had actually made it, that I won and the reward was someone considering my life to be worth making a documentary. How often does that happen?
Generally, talking about sexual abuse is not encouraged in Catholic dominated countries. Before we started filming this documentary, I did some research on this subject to find out why this is so. I could not find anything concrete, but I did come to my own conclusions though: Generally, Catholic Clergy discourage victims to report or discuss sexual abuse. Their reasons are many and I am now only referring to Child Sexual Abuse.
1. It would upset or break up a family if the abuser later in life formed a family and had children of his own. It would hurt his children who are not at fault for his “mistakes”.
2. Suffering is part of life, Jesus suffered for us so we must accept suffering as a humbling experience.
3. Too much time has passed and it may not result in arrests and would only cause shame to the perpetrators family.
4. It’s possible that the child victim may have imagined, made up or dreamed and could cause embarrassment to his/her own family.
What the Clergy is really saying is this: Please don’t talk about it or report it because once people come forward, we will be uncovered and most of us would go to prison/get transferred if the people found out we were child molesters and that we pay many women child support payments.
This documentary will finally remove the stigma associated with child sexual abuse victims such as mental instability, promiscuity and victim mentality, trouble makers.
Even people that were never sexually abused have those problems. The film is founded on positive and empowering words, I would not have agreed to it any other way, I refused to act the victim so although much of the visual is about my everyday life, the words I speak are powerful telling women/men that have been silent about their abuse they have nothing to be ashamed of, rather the perpetrator, he is the one that should be shamed and exposed. We are not victims as adults, we were victims while the crimes were being committed against us.
We do not need to suffer, a true God is LOVE, as we were created in LOVE, we do not need to suffer, God does not want us to suffer, only Catholic Clergy want us to suffer so we can hide their crimes.
We are powerful, more powerful than we know and if you choose to remain a Catholic/Christian, then at least read the parts of the bible where Jesus talks about this very subject. He says that we are the same as he is, that we can do everything he does. In other words Jesus was teaching people how powerful they are.
In the next few weeks I will be receiving short video clips and photos of the actually filming and will share with my readers. This is why I returned to Croatia, to start the healing journey for all the silent suffering, to encourage them to come forward and talk about it so they can start their healing. I know that there was a reason for me returning to my country of birth, but 10 years ago I didn’t know what it was, I just knew I had to be here.
They don’t have to report the abuse to the police or even share with their families, but it’s important that they heal. The longer we keep the secrets buried, the longer it takes to heal. Our culture does not support openly discussing sexual abuse and it’s time we started.
The film was done in such a way that it will (I hope) encourage people to come forward, they will see that despite the traumas I suffered, it is possible to let go and forgive ourselves, to be happy and live a productive life and most important of all; to be able to love and be loved again.
I’m hoping the film will change the atmosphere in Croatia and other Catholic dominant countries, as soon as the film is released, I will be doing my first Public Speaking Engagement about Empowerment and coming forward. This is all happening at the beginning of 2015, should be interesting year indeed. Will keep you posted and put up links where you can watch the video clips.
Thanks to: http://inesradman.wordpress.com