I grew up in the era of silence regarding child-abuse, rape, abuse of ‘wards of the state’, wife-beating, gay-bashing/murdering. In the main, the non-abusers kept the secrets of the abusers. 

The adults kept up a social facade of ‘acceptability’; the parents, the nuns & brothers, the businessmen;  whilst behind closed doors they were deeply damaged people who therefore did deeply damaging things to others. However:

The women were blamed for being beaten by their husbands; women were blamed for being raped, and wards of the state, of which I was one, were not only blamed for being wards of the state but also treated like delinquents by the outside community. It was a completely erroneous assessment however it it certainly became a prophesy for many of my peers at the time. 

Some of the kids I grew up with after being made a ward of the state had experienced no kindness, no goodness; only a constant stream of imaginative abuse that is too brutal to speak of.

I was lucky. I had appearances in my life of a few good people and so knew kindness and laughter was possible. They did not. To be treated as a delinquent, before they had even spoken…as a kid who “deserves anything she/he gets” and “any charity is too good for them” and to be constantly mistreated by the nuns and brothers…

Yeah they became delinquents! 

Why did I tell you all this? To give you some background on why I personally hate silence and secrets.

Professionally I have nursed people in psychosis due to their inability to safely express their inner thoughts, experiences, self. I have nursed people consumed by drug/alcohol addiction as they escape their secrets, anxiety and panic disorders consume our community…

Oh I know. It is not all because of secrets. But the thing is, after decades of psych nursing and counselling I can tell you that the vast majority of people are liberated by the true expression of their experiences and the knowledge that we all, ALL, fail and succeed daily at whatever this thing is that is to be human.

That is it really isn’t it? Secrets come from a sense of SHAME

And shame is a horrid and counter-productive religiously provoked thick oozy rot of an emotion. We all do life the best we can and unless we are a nasty-pastie we have nothing to be ashamed of.

So There!

That’s what I think of silence and secrets!

And you poor reader will have no idea whats provoked this purge of mine about secrets. Put simply it is because I have discovered I am someone else’s secret and I have to respect that and it is difficult.

Love me x

5 thoughts on “SILENCE & SECRETS

  1. I know you are against shame…I get that. How do you see, though, the healthy sense of having done something wrong and needing to make amends? If you do not call it shame, what do you call it?

  2. I call it taking responsibility! Shame and guilt are self indulgent non-active emotions. I feel no shame for my mistakes because I feel no shame for being human…hence wrong sometimes. The point is to step up and own it thus making amends comes natural if indeed you feel your ‘wrong’ requires amends. And by sharing your experiences, what some call mistakes, we all can be enriched in this journey.

    • I totally agree we should take responsibility. But that is the action we take in response to what we perceive or feel. What word do you use for the feeling that we have that accompanies the understanding that we have done wrong…that, perhaps, we have hurt someone we love? When I realize that I have hurt someone, I feel horrible about it. I want to make things right in the relationship. What word do you use to describe that feeling?

      Or, are you saying that you never feel badly about how your actions have caused hurt or damage to another person? Help me to understand.

      • I have always done my very best not to cause harm to others. However if I do cause someone grief I guess I’d describe my feelings as regret & a sense of responsibility rather than shame. Of course I will try to make up for any pain I cause however I don’t feel shame or guilt because I know that the hurt wasn’t intentional and that I was doing the best I could do at the time. In my experience shame, guilt etc dis-empower people and often turns in to a type of self-indulgence powerless ‘what I did was so terrible’, ‘I’ll never forgive myself’…etc. Not healthy for anyone.

        And you know if we all did the best we can in the circumstances we are in we all are guaranteed to screw up ! Why should we feel guilt and shame over this? Yes some folk do really crappy intentional stuff but most don’t and it is to the most I speak.

  3. Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you. “Regret.” I like that word. And, of course, “responsibility”. It is hard to know that I have caused someone pain and regret is definitely part of the picture. Of course, I never would hurt someone intentionally, but being human…it happens. And I hate it when it does.

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