Tuesday, March 21, 2006

If spring is here why am I still shivering?

Today is the first full day of spring, but today doesn't look any different than the last couple of days and it is in fact colder than many winter days. On dreary spring days I wonder if meteorologists know anything at all. Look at how often they're wrong. But they know something I often forget.

Spring can arrive before we feel it.

That's also true of surviving rape. But that doesn't mean it's safe to throw off our protective gear, emotional or physical. Spring blizzards can be deadly especially if we aren't paying attention. But that's easier said than done when you feel like a zombie or are in overwhelming pain.

In recovery, spring blizzards often come from people.

There are far too many people who see those lost in their personal blizzards and who instead of helping them, delight in exploiting their vulnerability. Rape survivors can become rape victims again. This happened to me, but I was so detached that most of the time it didn't matter. I was caught in an internal blizzard and if the dangers were out of sight or blurry, they didn't exist in my world.

Then there are the shelters that only provide temporary protection. Mood-altering substances can shelter you even as they rob you of the momentum to trudge through the blizzard toward true shelter. People in genuine helping roles can abuse their positions. I didn't see the dangers and I took responsibility for that.

Too much responsibility.

I didn't create the blizzard. I didn't bring out the predators and exploiters, they were already there, waiting.

Remind yourself of that fact whenever you are tempted to put the responsibility on the victim -- especially if the victim is you.
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posted by Marcella Chester @ 9:09 AM   0 comments links to this post

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