Fear of relationships Pt.2

It’s been 3 years since then, I thought that by now I would have healed and I would be able to get in a relationship no problem. Unfortunately that isn’t the case. Today, I am 25, single, living on my own and still no relationship.

When I came back to Vancouver, my ex was the last one to know. My best friend and I would take pictures together, hang out and post it on social media but without the location. For a few weeks he didn’t catch on I was back. He asked me a couple times if they were old picture or if I was back and I would just ignore his messages. Eventually, I figured me and my ex needed to talk so I told him I’ve been back for weeks and he got really mad at me. I didn’t feel bad about it and I felt like I didn’t owe him anything. I didn’t have to tell him anything but I did it because I wanted to move on with my life by talking to him face to face.

When my best friend and I went to go talk to him, it made me realize that I really did make the right decision by leaving him. He was still acting like a little boy and being selfish. He didn’t see the mistakes he made and the hurtful things he has said. He believed that I was at fault. I knew at that moment I didn’t need him in my life.

A year past when I saw him next. We are working on being friends and I get to see my Nephew more often. Him giving me my space was the best thing he could do. I had to think about where I was going in my life and who was I going to be as a person- was I going to hold grudges for the rest of my life or was I going to live my life in happiness? I admit, I feel better now that I’m not holding a grudges. It doesn’t mean though that I have forgotten or forgiven what happened, it just means that I’m not going to hate him for the rest of my life.

Hating on my Ex-Fiancé and holding on to my other Ex was killing me inside. I was holding on to things that are never going to come back or be like it used to be. I had to learn to let go of someone I loved and someone I resented. I had to learn that everything happens for a reason and not everything will go my way. What happened in my past has made me stronger and wiser.

Honestly, I’m not sure how I will react if I ever see ex again. I know there’s still a part of me that breaks when I hear his name, when I hear about his family. I still wonder if he thinks of me, wonders what I’m doing with my life or even if I’m happy.

I still wonder “what if”. I still carry a picture of him with me. Sometimes I think I torture myself by doing so. I do wish him happiness. I wish him the best of luck and I hope his wife gives him everything he needs and wants. I hope he lives in a beautiful house and has a job he loves. However at the end of day, I miss him.

Another reason why I fear relationships… Many men and women have sexually abused me. All these people would blame me and makes me feel so tiny, like I was nothing! They would say that I’m fat, ugly and that I pretty much deserved it. How does someone trust anyone if everyone they trusted betrayed them? I cannot say that I trust people because I don’t entirely. However, one day i hope that i will be able to do so.

Madison Looking Through My Eyes

This blog not going to be the same as others, because it’s going to honestly be a little of everything. You will understand in a bit, I do want to warn you that this is going to be a bit touchy and sensitive to some people because I will be talking about an experience I’ve had. Our group did an activity a little while ago that triggered my depression and got this blog on my mind since and I know if I don’t get this out I may not be able to face them. I do not blame them it for triggering me don’t get me wrong there I love everyone in our group, but it’s the thought of feeling broken even though I try not to show it that bothers me the most. It also feels like I’m being untruthful to them not sharing what’s bugging me that also nags at me. So I wanted to get it all off my chest for everyone.Today I wanted to talk about what I’ve been thinking about lately, and it’s been constently in my head. I’ve also tried writing this multiple times in the past few weeks. I wanted to talk about little bits of my past, and how it brought me into the field of work I am in now. For those that don’t know I’m a youth worker and I work with at-risk youth that are homeless. It’s very rewarding job and I love it, I’ve been able to work with some very awesome people and some amazing youth. The most amazing this about my job is watching our youth succeed. I got into the field because I have been faced with homelessness at a young age, and I remember the fear of my next step. I went to a fundraiser last night with my work to open up a second house staging for youth that have aged out of care, and it was an amazing experience. We are hoping to open that up in the next couple years.
But what got me into this field was when I ran away from home when I was younger, I went to stay at a friend’s house. His parents had passed away a couple years before that, so his older brother was taking care of the house. I also had heard he was taking in other young girls on the street who were in similar situations as me. I remember being so happy being allowed to stay there, they had always been like brothers to me and I loved them. To this day I can still remember my first night at that house, as I was laying in my room the walls echoed with the screams of the other girls. The fear that pulsed through my veins when I went to try the door and it was locked from the outside. That night was one of the worst nights of my life, as this man who I saw as a big brother took advantage of me and I learnt that was the payment to staying at his house. As time went on and thing only got worse, I started feeling helpless and isolated. As well the more I fought back the more I got beaten down both verbally and physically.

So when I started working in this field my main goal was to never have another youth go through the same toutures I went through. I also got into this field to show the youth that they have support, someone who will help and listen to and that won’t throw them away after. My love for my work helps drives my passion to help the ones I need. Youth homelessness is something close to my heart and something I really feel strongly about. Growing up I was always told that the youth are our future, so why are we denying them the most basic needs and resources. That to me is one of the most frustrating things is trying to help a youth get towards a goal, then tell them that they are on a waiting list due to an overabundance of others trying to access the same resource. And that is because of the lack of the resources we have for our youth, I believe we need more and that is why our group was started. So that we can help make more resource for our community.

 

Dear Marie

Dear Self,

I know you are hurting, and have been for a very long time. I want you to know that it’s ok to hurt. I know that a lot of people have hurt you over the years, and that in dealing with that you hurt yourself. You made choices that affected your future and you put the blame on yourself when it shouldn’t have been there. I watch you day after day let the hurt that is inside you influence your decisions, and I need you to let it go.

Let go of the pain caused by being bullied in elementary school, it’s far behind you now. In fact you have made amends with most of your bullies, most questions have been answered, and you’ve grown from it. You have learnt many things from those eight years, academically and about yourself as well as those around you. So let that go, it’s been a decade, don’t let that hurt spend one second longer lingering around.
Move past all those failed relationships and all the nasty words flung into the air, you know many of them don’t hold any real footing. Let go of all of the downs, and don’t dwell on the goods.

What I am asking of you is to dig deep down into that hurt and let everything go. I know this is not an easy thing to ask and it’s going to hurt, which makes it hard to ask anyone to do so. I need you to believe me, to have faith in yourself, that in the end the results will be worth it. You don’t need to carry around the burden of old guilt and hurt. So look deep inside and work through all that hurt sitting heavy on your heart piece by piece. Work out why it hurts and what it taught you, focus on that and not the pain. You do not need to forget what happened or forgive the person, but let it go and let it be no more than a stone in the road to the person you are today. Look inside yourself and try and answer those loose ends and unanswered questions, to put the hurt to rest.

Most of all I need you to understand that some things are not your fault, don’t victim blame yourself. Some one did something horrible to you and you never asked them to do so, you are not responsible for their actions. You did not consent to their actions, and there was nothing you could do to stop it. You were sexually assaulted; that person took from you something they were not meant to take, that you tried to stop them from taking. You can not put blame on yourself, there’s nothing you could do to prevent it. Even more so, you need to let it go because there is nothing you can do now to change the events that happened. Please forgive your self, as if you can’t do that how can you be happy?

Sincerely,

Marie Olsson

Ivy belle: Fear of relationships Pt.1

Fear of relationships

 

“It’s okay to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really, really brave.” – Mandy Hale

Have you ever stopped yourself from being in a relationship because you’re too scared to get hurt or be in one? I have.

The last time I was in a relationship was when I was 19 and left him when I was 22. I was engaged to this guy and we lived together even though he put me through a lot. From cheating, to lying & even using me, I stayed with him because I thought that I was just being a bad girlfriend and I was overreacting. When you’re in a relationship with someone who blames you for everything and tells you it’s your fault- you start to believe it. That relationship was my first serious relationship and I think that’s why I kept forgiving him because I also thought that this is the only relationship I will ever have and that no one else will love me but him.

I remember being vulnerable, angry, anxiety, hurt and I felt betrayed 90% of our relationship. He would be with another woman but lie to me, and even if he wasn’t I got so paranoid that I couldn’t sleep at night until he would show up. When I would ask him where he’s been, he would get very defensive. I didn’t know at the time that lies could really destroy a person. I took him back at least 8 times but every time I told myself “ this time is it! Me and him are over for good.” However, I would always take him back even when I knew it was bad news. I stayed with him until I literally hated him. I couldn’t stand having him around anymore. I didn’t want to be intimate, I wanted him to go sleep over at his friends, I would get upset for no reason and I was angry all the time.

Instead of leaving him and saving myself the pain I stayed with him to the point that I hated him more than my dad. Later on, when we broke off the engagement and everything I told myself I wouldn’t get into another relationship but then my ex’s sister introduced me to someone else. He was a nice guy and with time I fell hard for him. He would always try to surprise me but little did I know, my ex knew him too and he didn’t like him- apparently he’s a “goof” whatever that means. My ex did everything in his power to make sure that we broke up. One say my ex called me and told me I had to chose to break up with my boyfriend or having no where to live. I remember being hurt, torn and I told him that I wasn’t going to break up with my boyfriend for him.

One night my ex called me really angry and told me we needed to talk face to face. When I showed up we got into a heated argument about my boyfriend and he kept asking me if I broke up with my boyfriend, I told him no. At this point it was 2 am and I was ready to walk out the door until he wouldn’t let me leave because it was late. Eventually I gave in and he told me we would watch a movie together until we fell asleep. At that moment I knew all this was wrong and I just wanted to sit in a corner and cry. When we were watching a moving my ex put his hands on me and I kept telling him no to take his hands off me. I thought he would of understood but next thing I know I was pinned to his bed and he forced me to have sex with him. I felt disgusted even though I kept telling him that this is a bad idea that we shouldn’t do this. It was too late. The next morning he left for work and I hurried to get all my stuff together to leave but his roommate told me that I shouldn’t of slept with him that I would hurt my ex’s feelings. I tried to explain to him that I tried to tell him no but he kept blaming me. When I got back to my ex sister’s place (where I lived) and I tried to avoided talking about the night before.

When I got home I was trying to get a hold of my boyfriend but I wasn’t able to get a hold of him. My ex’s sister confronted me about what happened last night because apparently my ex called her. I tried to explain the situation but she sided with him by saying that he didn’t point a gun to my head and I could of left at any point, I was hurt. I texted my ex telling him that that night wasn’t supposed to happened that he pressured me into sleeping with him but he said that I could of walked away. In that moment I was so confused if it was rape or if it was actual sex. My ex threatened to tell my boyfriend that I cheated on him and that I liked it and etc.. After 3 days I finally got a message from my boyfriend asking me what the hell happened and explained that he got a message from my ex and he was really mad. I explained that I didn’t want to sleep with him but he pressured me but my boyfriend only saw it as cheating not rape. At the moment, he broke up with me and I was devastated.

I didn’t really have anyone to talk to because I wasn’t on good terms with any of my friends and I didn’t want to have this talk with my mom. I had so many plans with my boyfriend: we were suppose to move in together, build a family and get married but that night of the break up he got back with his ex girlfriend and got engaged. Now he’s happily married and has 4 kids. Still today I miss him. I wish we could talk things through and be friends but I know that’s not possible. I keep telling myself that I might actually have had a good life right now and be happy.

After all the heartache I moved back to Quebec with my family to get my life back together. I told myself that I would be doing a job that I love, that I could heal my heart again, and take care of my family- but that wasn’t the case for most part. My ex-fiancé was always trying to get a hold of me-texting, snap chatting, Facebook, etc. I kept telling him to leave me alone but he wouldn’t. It took me a long time for me to be able to supress my anger and bitterness. I stayed single even though my friends and family tried to hook me up with people. I’ve had people ask me for one night stands but I’ve turned them all down because I don’t personally think that sleeping with someone while I’m healing will help me at all or just sleeping with someone for the pleasure of it.

To be continued….

Stay Strong. Stay Beautiful. Keep fighting -Ivybelle- Xx

 

 

Marie Talks: The Power of No: Elementary Edition

Warning: talks about sexual assault

“Let today mark a new beginning for you. Give yourself permission to say NO without feeling guilty, mean, or selfish. Anybody who gets upset and/or expects you to say YES all of the time clearly doesn’t have your best interest at heart. Always remember: You have a right to say NO without having to explain yourself. Be at peace with your decisions.” –Stephanie Lahart

As a child I was taught to never be afraid of saying ‘no’, that the person will respect you and that word.  I was told that at any point I had the right to say no if for any reason I was against something, and I should say no and stick to that answer.  To me that seems like a straight forward word, and a pretty easy set of boundaries to follow when using the word. Personally, I never expected the rules and boundaries to change as I got older; however the older I got the more rules and fears began to accompany the word no. As the years went by more rules were placed on the word, and little by little the apprehension I had towards it grew.

Starting in elementary school the realization came that saying no was not quite as easy as it seemed. To begin with how do you tell someone ‘no’ without coming off rude or hurt the persons feelings? It was as though there was a science behind how to politely say no. Then came the disappointment, persuasion, and sometimes harsh words. That no matter why I said ‘no’ it was endlessly questioned or it wasn’t always taken so nicely. That taught that ‘no’ wasn’t a nice thing to say or that it could hurt people. What this taught me about the word no was to weigh the pros and cons of saying no and choose which path would hurt both parties the least.

I also learnt that even if something seemed wrong to me I could not always say ‘no’, particularly when a teacher or other authority figure asked something of me. Things such as dissections, sitting next to the person who bullied me, or doing those trust exercises when I didn’t want to be touched. It taught me that although something is against my morals/beliefs or I’m not ok with it I don’t always have a choice and have to do it because it’s expected of me. To be honest as a child this confused me, I questioned why [for instance] my teacher had the ‘right’ to disregard my wishes and my ‘comfort level’. What this taught me was that I had to pick and choose my ‘battles’ and that there were certain people (those with authority) who I could not refuse to do what they asked of me. However if the authority figure said no we had to comply with their wishes.

Around the age of seven I went camping in the summer right after my birthday with my daycare.  It was there that I learnt probably the hardest lesson about saying no I ever would: when saying no people don’t always listen. I was forced into an empty room in the cabin against my wishes by a much older boy. He tried kissing me and despite saying no repeatedly I still ended up in this room with him. While I was saying no and trying to get around him he managed to pin me to one of the bunk beds. He did end up getting the kiss he tried for, as well as my bathing suit top off. I managed to get him off me as he went for my bottoms and escaped the room. I was shaken, parts of my body had been touched and seen against my will and my words and actions had been ignored. I never told anyone as I thought it would put me in trouble with my daycare and with him, I was in the wrong, and I would be seen as overreacting or lying. The lesson I learnt was not only that people don’t always listen to you when you say no, they can also ignore the non-verbal display of noncompliance.

Things I had learnt about the word no by the time I was thirteen:
1. To weigh the pros and cons of saying no and choose which path would hurt both parties the least.
2. To pick and choose my ‘battles’ and that there were certain people (those with authority) who I could not refuse to do what they asked of me.
3. However if the authority figure said no we had to comply with their wishes.
4. That people don’t always listen to you when you say no, they can also ignore the non-verbal display of noncompliance.

Do you have any rules or boundaries you have learnt or been taught about using the word no? I would love to hear them.

Stay Loud, Stay Proud, Stay You,
Marie Olsson xx

Marie Talks: Note to My Assailant

Trigger warning: talks about sexual assault/rape, with some (as little as possible) detail.

Something I think a lot of us would like a chance to do is say what we want to the person that hurt us. What we’d probably want more, to feel safe while we say what we want. At least for me, I know that’s what I would like. With no way to actually contact him, I am writing a blog post. 

This is part of my journey to letting it go so here’s what I would love to tell my rapist. Feel free to comment what you would say to yours below.

Dear Rapist,

It’s been years since that night you took something from me that you had no right in taking. I’d like to say that I am over it and the thought of you doesn’t disgust me or make my blood run cold; however that is false the mere thought makes me sick, angry, devastated, and scared. Not that I really want to tell you that, but it is the truth.

I can still see your face when I close my eyes, remember the smell of your putrid breath, the sickening feeling of your hands, and how you spoke those words to me. I can still remember what you did and the emotions and fears that went through me. These same fears still run through me at the thought of intimacy sometimes. You ruined that for me, at least for now. Hopefully one day I can forget your face and not have your actions at the forefront of my mind when I am with another person.

The moment of dread, fear and knowing of what was going to happen to me is still vivid in my mind. How I feared much worse would happen if I kept fighting, and the way I went numb and stopped fighting; how I felt like I was allowing it to happen. I can pinpoint exactly when it washed over me and I knew I was not going to win this battle. The knowing of no matter what I did it was going to happen and all I can do is minimize the pain and violence that I endure. That moment is what haunts me the most, worse than everything else that happened that night. It’s what keeps me up at night, wondering if that with that action I allowed what happened. Wondering if that would be considered consent, if it made it not rape. Makes me question if I am a victim or if I am to blame. Makes me wonder if I could have stopped you, could I have? If I screamed a little louder/longer, or fought even a little harder.

Is that what you wanted? To emotionally scar someone, to make their life a little harder? To have some fun in the moment and make my life after do a 180°? Because that’s what you did. You visited me nightly, sometimes more than nightly, whenever I closed my eyes. You made me fear sleeping, made it near impossible too. What you did didn’t just happen to me that night, it happened in my dreams nightly for the years to follow. Even though for you it was just that night, with me at least. Almost a decade later now and it’s no longer nightly, only once in a while and for now I’m okay with that. Maybe one day I will be able to never see your face again when I close my eyes.

There is not a mean and nasty word I would not love to call you, or haven’t called you. It’s the least I can do for what you put me through, because what you did to me was more than just rape, it left psychological scars. Your actions tainted my very being and I want it to stop. That is why I am writing this, why I am writing this for you. I want you to know what you did, feel the impact of what you did, and be able to get it off my chest to the person responsible for causing this burden.

I do still question why me, what made you turn around and choose to rape me? We’d known each other for years, since we were little. We were close, and I trusted you. I would’ve thought if I was raped I would have ran to you to make me feel safe, not run from you to feel safer. We were close, we were friends; I guess being close to you made me an easy target, I had put my guard down. That’s why isn’t it? I trusted you enough to let you close to me, to never hurt me, and that made it easier for you.

What you forced upon me left me feeling worthless, dirty, ruined, devastated, and like a toy for others. It took years for me to even begin shaking those beliefs about myself. I hated it, you left me more disgusted with myself then with you. I thought everything valuable about myself hinged on my ‘purity’, and therefore due to you forcibly taking that away from me I was stripped of my value. I have come to terms with what I felt and I now know otherwise. I am just as valuable as I was prior to that night, if not more so because I am stronger than I was that night. I am not dirty nor am I ruined, you took something from me that other than in societies outdated eyes means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of life. I am no longer devastated, yes it still pains me to think about now but what you did made me a stronger person. I am not a toy for others to do as they please with. I have absolute control on what happens to me, and if I say ‘no’ or anything along those lines I should be respected and the issue is not with me but with them, with you.

Through all of the years after that night I have grown to realise something. I have to thank you for a few things too.
1) I want to thank you for making me stronger, making me more resilient and showing me why barriers within myself can be helpful.
2) Thank you for teaching me that trusting someone fully is not always a good thing. That if I have a doubt about someone, something or a situation to recognize that and proceed accordingly.
3) Thanks for forcing the rose coloured glasses off of me. Not everything is as it seems.
4) You taught me compassion for sexual assault victims as I can understand how their trauma came about. For that I grudgingly thank you.
5) Thank you for giving me one of my strongest passions. Which is to see justice for every victim. For every sick disgrace such as you may feel karma and the law catch up with you. To help others through their issues, something I never reached out for after that night.
6) Thank you for teaching me what true hatred feels like; because, although I can not stand that word, I can safely say I hate you.

If I could turn the clock back all these years I would, I would stop that night from happening and I would stop having anything to do with you. I know I can never forgive you. But I’ve learnt that that night is not my fault, and I forgive myself. I can say I don’t hate you nearly as much as I did that night, but I will never be alright with you. I am stronger, I am happier, and I am moving forward with my life.

Sincerely,
Your Victim

For me this as closure, as I have no way to tell him this directly. I have learnt that it’s hard to get closure if you have unsaid feelings and words stuck in you. I hope he reads this one day, however chances are he never will.
I’ll be honest writing this was painstakingly hard, I sobbed a few times and wanted to give up, but I didn’t. But now that it is out I feel ten times better than I had, I feel slightly more at peace with my past. I know I still have a long journey ahead of me, but right this moment I feel as though I just finished climbing the mountain I was sure I’d never reach the top of. I have more mountains and hurdles ahead of me but from here I hope they get easier.


With all that being said I tried to leave out as much detail as I could without losing the integrity of it, sorry if it was too much for anyone. Hopefully it helped someone else too, that even one other person took something from this that will help them.

What would you say to your assailant?

Stay Strong, Stay Beautiful,
Marie Olsson xx

Feel free to contact me if you wish,  you can get the information in my about me.

 

 

 

Marie Talks: Things I wish I was told about Sexual Assault

Trigger warning: talking about sexual abuse/assault and rape.

Growing up you don’t hear much about sexual assault , at least not about the stuff that really matters. I see a lot about how it wouldn’t have happened if the victim did this or didn’t do that. I hear a lot of people telling victims they’re lying, that it’s not sexual assault , or they provoked it. What I don’t see a lot of is people supporting the victims and making their life a little easier by just making them feel safe to talk to someone about what happened.

Here are a few things growing up I wish I had heard about sexual assault and rape:

1) It is never the victims fault.
No matter what the situation it is still not their fault. Even if they were fine while kissing and touching but then changed their mind and wanted to stop, it’d not their fault.
Times when it’s not the victims fault:

  • they never wanted it
  • they are drunk or under the influence of any substance
  • they are showing skin, and when they aren’t
  • they changed their mind
  • it was their boyfriend
  • etc.

Times when it is the victims fault:

  • never.

2) It doesn’t matter how you are dressed
Whether you are covered in clothing all the way from your chin to your toes or you are absolutely naked you are still not at fault and can be sexually assaulted. If the amount of clothing or lack of clothing made you a target then sexual assault could be solved by covering up; however that is not the case as even in the winter sexual assault still happens. The assailant does not choose their target necessarily on attractiveness and lack of clothing, they go after someone who is an easy target. More often this means the person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, in an isolated or dark area, or someone that trusts them.

3) The assailant is not always a stranger
Yes they can be a stranger but your assailant is just as likely to be someone you know. Whether it is a coworker, your best friend, your boyfriend/girlfriend, a classmate, or a family member they can be your assailant and it still is assault.

  • It is still assault if you are or have been intimate with the person. Giving them consent once does not give them free reign to be intimate with you whenever they want to be.

4) Everyone can be a victim
Boy, girl, man, woman, mother, or teacher can be sexually assaulted. Just because you wouldn’t expect them to be assaulted. They are just as much a victim no matter their relationship with their assailant, their gender, or their ‘title’.

5) Sexual assault does not make you dirty, slutty, worthless or take away your value as a person
As a victim you may feel this way, but sexual assault does not make you any of these things. What happened does not take away your worth as a human, you are just as valuable as you were before your assault. You are still the same person, just something horrible happened to you. You are not dirty or slutty, you had no control over what happened to you and you should not let what happened have control over you. The only title your sexual assault gave you is a victim, a survivor.

6) After being raped or sexually assaulted you should report it. 
Reporting it can be a tedious and stressful thing to do. However it can be beneficial to do so, along with getting a full STD/STI testing done. There are many organizations such as Surrey Women’s Centre (Surrey, BC, Canada) that can offer their support through this process.

Stay Beautiful Lovies,
Marie Olsson xx

Madison Talks Animal Abuse

Animal Abuse

What is Animal Abuse? This is a definition from legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com

Animal Abuse: the crime of inflicting physical pain, suffering or death on an animal, usually a tame one, beyond necessity for normal discipline. It can include neglect that is so monstrous (withholding food and water) that the animal has suffered, died or been put in imminent danger of death.

To me I can’t fully understand or want to understand someone who puts an animal through animal abuse. I am an animal lover, in my house hold we have three dogs, and two cats. To me I couldn’t imagine putting them in any sort of harm, it would honestly break my heart. One of our dogs is very curly we haven’t had the money to trim him lately so he got really matted, it was actually getting really bad so we asked a favor from my mother in-law. Thank goodness for her she trimmed his hair for us but he did not like it at all, and hearing him whine broke my heart. To me animals should be treated the same as we treat are children. Yes they should be disciplined or they won’t know what is right or wrong but you do not need to harm them to have them listen.

 

Discipline is always hard to talk about, because like children you never want to offend someone. There is a definite difference between abuse and discipline. The biggest difference is what your intentions are. If you are aiming to hurt then that is abuse, where as discipline your intention should be to teach and it should be no harder than a tap. When it comes to discipline you do not need to hit at all if it is not needed. It’s important we show our animals love and respect because no matter what our animals will always love us unconditionally and they will always stay loyal. I don’t want to talk too much about discipline because I will be talking more about it in my next blog.

 

Another thing that is important to keep in mind that no matter how domesticated an animal may be they will still have the wild instinct in them. Like if a human hurts them out of instinct a dog will either turn around and nip at you or give you a warning growl. A cat will smack their face against you to show their affection and love, while at the same time they are scenting you as well. I think a big problem is that some people don’t understand animals fully and sometimes people will over react, and an animal may panic and then the situation gets out of hand. When it comes to an animal wild instinct it’s something that the owners have to spend a lot of time training them out of the animal and replacing it with love and affections.

I know that not everyone will agree with what I say and that’s fine, but I’d love to hear your guy’s opinions on this topic. As well as any question, concerns that may come up.

 

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~Madison

Howie Defranco Talks Child Abuse

Hey blog readers, it’s Howie Defranco and today’s topic is child abuse, and hey this is like my third blog on abuse. So hopefully you know my stance already, that I think abuse is equivalent of torture and that people who do it need to reevaluate their value of life. So having said that lets start talking about child abuse, mental, physical, and sexual it’s the trifecta of abuse because it comes in all forms. Which makes it very disturbing as look just read that sentence again and think we do this to children…. TO CHILDREN. That right there is the worst most heinous thing I can think about a society where people can get away with abusing their children.
Let’s be clear about that though, there are laws in place, the abusers can go to jail, their children (if it’s there’s) sent to a foster home. A foster home where it is entirely possible the whole thing could happen again and the cycle begins again, destroying the child’s psyche, self esteem and view of the world. Better yet that child some how could grow up thinking it was all their fault that their abusers had a right to do it and they should be ashamed of it. Even then they could be the kid that grows up with it then when they have kids, they think it’s ok to act like their parents did and become abuser’s themselves. It’s honestly a vicious cycle that in a perfect world would be more than outlawed but alas this is what we live in.
To bring this to a point though and not just me ranting, if your a kid reading this, or anyone still living at home stop right now and think about the fact you can try to stand up. Try being the word, if you don’t think you can tell someone you trust, someone who can for you, who can protect you. For the good adults reading this, look out for the young people in your life, nurture them, protect them, show them there are good, strong, kind people in this world. For this world is filled with them but sadly the few people who aren’t go to far and wreck others lives.

Madison: Stereotypes of Child Abuse

Child Abuse

Here’s the definition of child abuse from dictionary.com

Child Abuse: mistreatment of a child by a parent or guardian, including neglect, beating, and sexual molestation.

When it comes to child abuse this topic always makes me angry, some people say that’s because I am a mother, but honestly it doesn’t matter. No child should be put in that kind of situation nor have to watch someone else go through it. Through my child hood I went through some stuff that I hope none of mine have to go through, but I was lucky in a sense that none of the abuse came from either of my parents nor any adult in my family. Today I’m going to be going through some different stereotypes about child abuse.

Stereotype

· There will be physical evidence of abuse.
> That is not always the case, when it comes to verbal, emotional or even physical abuse they are not always shown. Sad to say but more times than not emotional scars can do more damage than physical ones.

· Most child abusers are strangers.
> This is a very common stereotype that is false. When it comes to child abuse a majority of the abuse comes from a person from which the child already trusts and respects. That does not mean assume everyone you know is abusing your child or make your child fear everyone, that is not what I’m saying, but it is something to keep an eye on. A lot of child abductions are mostly from people the child already knows and trusts. My mother was always in fear of this, so we came up with a safe word, so any time she sent someone to come pick me up beside her or my grandfather they would have to tell me the safe word (password) before I’d be allowed to go with them. Lucky for me I never had to use it but it’s always a good idea to be safer rather than sorry. Also communication is key, my mother was always planning a head and letting us know who and when someone different was picking us up.

· Children usually tell someone that they are being abused
> Most children will not tell people they are being abused, because out of fear or threats or even respect. No matter what the cause children will still love their parent/abuser, just not the abuse. Children are very smart but they don’t fully know right from wrong until we show them the difference, and their innocence is sometimes what is keeping their mouth shut because we don’t know what goes on behind closed doors.
That brings me to my next topic discipline. This topic is a tricky one especially when it comes with abuse. One thing to remember is every parent is different, but by law there is still a line that is drawn. I for one do not like to spank my son but I will if he is putting himself or others in danger, and in all honestly he just turned five in April and I think I’ve spanked him a total of 4 times. I am more the time outs, kind of parent but even though they break my heart. Discipline is hard for all parties but yes it needs to be done, but make sure to do the research before you accidentally cross a line. Because I want to believe no one wants to hurt their children and yes things sometimes happen when tempers fly high but remember we are in this together, everyone makes mistake we are human. When I mess up and I do, (hahaha more times than not but hey), I just remove myself, calm myself and address the situation accordingly, then I show my son my love with lot of hugs and apologies. It’s also showing are children that we as adult still make mistakes and it’s not a bad thing, and it helps everyone be more accountable for their actions.

Thanks everyone for reading, I’d love to hear Question, Concerns, Answer, Statements, anything you want to through at me in the comment section below.

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” – Albert Einstein

~Madison Taylor

Howie Defranco, Animal Abuse: The Value of Life

Hey blog readers, it’s Howie Defranco and today we’re going to be talking about animal abuse. Let’s see what’s the best way to say this, if you are abusing an animal then you are petty and little. I could say a lot ruder things and should but I’m not really allowed to in these blogs, I believe I made my view on abuse very clear before in my sexual abuse blog. It is a means of torture, you are torturing these animals to satisfy your own needs and hurting these wonderful creatures is a shame on our own history. Genetically speaking, we evolved from some of these animals, and here people are testing drugs on them, stealing their fur, killing them for sport, and stealing pieces of them.  
Now wait a second, wait a second I just said killing them for sport, but people hunt animals, what’s the difference, why didn’t I say hunt. Hunting is meant as a way of getting food, a way of surviving, it’s part of the natural order. Lions, Bears, Sharks, and etc… hunt for food it’s part of the circle of life so to speak but do any of them kill their prey and not eat them to survive. No because that’s a waste of life and animals understand that, humans on the other hand well they kill and use the caracas as a trophy. I’m a pacifist but if you kill for survival then you are doing what you need to do to survive, if you do it just for the sake of doing it then you need to rethink your life choices.
Rethink them right now, if animal life means so little to you, if the abuse and torture they go through means nothing then what does life mean to you. Your life matters no more than theirs, they walk, they breathe, they communicate, their self-aware, they have families, what so different? What makes animal life so much less important then human life and why are so many okay with it. So stop right now and think about it what is your value of life if this is how you treat something that is living.

Madison Talks About Victim Blaming

I couldn’t find the definition on dictionary.com so I got the definition off of Wikipedia:
‘’Victim blaming occurs when the victim of a crime or any wrongful act is held entirely or partially responsible for the harm that befell them. The study of victimology seeks to mitigate the perception of victims as responsible’’

When it comes to victim blaming, it happens a lot in rape cases or bullying situations. Where the woman/man who had just been raped gets accused of asking for it. Or that boy who is getting bullied on the playground deserved it because he cried in class last week. Things like that don’t really make sense to me, why would someone ask for something bad to happen to them. On that note it reminds me of a quote I love, It’s sadly another unknown author, but if anyone one can find the author let me know because I’d love to give credit for it.

“The boy you punched in the hall today. Committed suicide a few minutes ago.
The boy you called lame for not going to the party. He has to work every night to support his family.
That girl you push down the stairs. She’s already abused at home.
The girl you called fat. She’s already starving herself.
The old man you made fun of because of his ugly scar. He fought for our country.
The boy you made fun of for crying. His mother is dying.
You may think you know them. Guess what? You don’t!”
~unknown

It’s not really a quote on victim blaming but it does give a good message. When you are accusing someone of something, no one ever really understands what someone else has gone through. So victim blaming is really unfair especially if something that is out of their control.

Howie Talks About Victim Blaming

Hey blog readers, it’s Howie Defranco and today we will be discussing the topic of Victim Blaming. Victim blaming is when a victim is blamed partially or in whole for the wrongful act that befell them. In life you actually hear about this a lot as a lot of people do victim blaming without even thinking about doing it. It can be as simple as saying you got yourself into this mess or as hurtful as saying they deserved it anyway. We’re going to talk more about the latter as it’s actually a pretty big topic in this day and age in social media, mostly from cases involving rape. A lot of people have different opinions or values that cause them to say something like that its because the victim dressed a certain way or they acted a certain way that left room open for it to be a grey area for the perpetrator to be in the right.

Which brings us to the story I’ve had in mind for this blog for a while, have you heard of a man named Elliot Rodger. Now of course this man is a perpetrator as discussed above but his story fits so well into what victim blaming is. In 2014 he shot six people before killing himself, his reason though was not because the people had wronged him nope it was because he was a virgin. He went on a killing spree because girls had rejected him, although only two of his victims were female the reason why it’s victim blaming is that he made a video before it. This video described that what he was doing was the girls fault that it was retribution or punishment for their decisions. He’s victim blaming his own victim’s for his crimes now that is something not uncommon for murders of this type of crime but usually the person chooses just to end their own life.

Then there’s Amanda Todd, another famous name for this blog, a victim of victim blaming. She was stalked and tormented by a man who took pornographic photos of her, but at her school, and at other schools her friends treated her as though it was her own fault. Her own fault for making the photos in the first place, and bullied her mercilessly for it. This run of victim blaming lead to her own suicide, which if people had looked at it as the man who took advantage of hers fault, wouldn’t have happened. Sadly admittedly hindsight is 20/20 but the people in those situations should have listened to her story.

Victim blaming is something that should not even be part of the equation but it happens just remember there are two sides to every story and not to judge things on either side.

From Howie.

Bibliography
N.p., n.d. Web. <http://abcnews.go.com/US/santa-barbara-killer-elliot-rodger-smiled-shooting-survivor/story?id=23923970&gt;.
N.p., n.d. Web. <http://healthland.time.com/2012/10/16/the-tragic-case-of-amanda-todd/&gt;

Marie Talks: Domestic Abuse

Disclaimer: None of what I say is definite it varies case to case. I can only speak of my personal experiences.

Domestic Violencealso known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, intimate partner violence, battering or family violence,  is a pattern of behavior which involves violence or other abuse by one person against another in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation.
Domestic Abuse can come in many forms,  the five types are: physical,  emotional,  sexual,  psychological and economic (financial).  It can also include spiritual abuse which is belittling a person’s beliefs.
Domestic abuse can happen to anyone: female, male, young, or old.

Domestic abuse is a scary thought, and it can be down right terrifying to the person living it. It can be draining, traumatizing and seemingly endless.  Many times you are constantly making excuses for your abuser whether to yourself or to others.  Or you believe that they’re just struggling and you can help them,  that you are the only one who can fix them. It can be hard to imagine that you can’t: help this person, get back the person you fell for before the abuse started, make things better and have a healthy and happy relationship.

You try to justify that the abuse only happens when they had a bad day or only once in a while, it’s not that bad – it could be worse. Your partner had a rough day at work, they just failed a test, they got laid off, or it only happens when they’re drunk. It’s a vicious circle of being abused and justifying your partners actions, whether with your reasoning or the reasons they feed you. The excuses, the countless reasons, they all add up until you could probably write a novel with all the justification given for their actions. For every action there’s a reason and whether consciously or subconsciously you give or accept the reason for the action.

You justify their actions believing you deserved it, you brought it upon yourself. They hit you and yell demeaning, hurtful things at you; but that’s ok you didn’t do what they asked of you. You’re forbidden from seeing your friends or family because you don’t tell them everything you do (how can they trust you if you don’t give them a minute by minute run through) or you stay out too long. You hug a friend of an opposite sex, or look or talk to anyone of the opposite sex, that’s punishable, how can you be trusted to be faithful. You dress or act not exactly as they want you to, they don’t like it, you did wrong by them and you deserve what happened. You buy things they see as petty and unnecessary, how can you be trusted to manage your own money.

The first time your partner abused you they apologize and promise they will not do so again, you believe them. You tell your partner that you forgive them, and for a while it may not happen again. But one day they hit you or demean you (use any form of abuse really) again, and you wonder why you believed them the first time that they were truly sorry and that it wouldn’t happen again. Your partner apologizes again, giving another reason for why it happened and maybe they promise again that it was the last time, they care for you and it hurts them just as much as you if not more. Or they tell you that you deserved it for something you did and tell you that they were really angry and you crossed a line. Maybe you forgive them again, holding on to the belief that what they are saying is true. However they don’t stay true to their words it happens again and again. Maybe the abuse is widely spread out a year between the first two, a couple months, a month, weeks or days; but it starts becoming more frequent with even more excuses. The abuse gets worse, you start looking over your shoulder, start isolating yourself and living in fear of your partner. You are probably still holding on to the happy memories, how great they can be, how they used to be; they are still that person just troubled. Maybe you keep forgiving them, maybe you want out. Your partner may threaten you with what they will do if you tell someone, if you try to leave them, if someone finds out.. and that just adds to your fear.

I think it’s important for the victim of domestic abuse to remember the excuses made for their partners actions, the justification either of you give does not make your partners actions alright. That you do not and never did deserve how you were treated, and that it’s not your job to ‘fix’ them. That the abuse you are/were put through is not your fault and there is no reason for you to have been treated like that. That all the apologies and jestures can not make up for your partners actions. Whether you decide to stay or not should not be up to your partner. That you should not put or keep yourself in a situation that is harmful to yourself. That there is always a way out, and there is help. Remember that there is no reason to be ashamed of being abused, that you can reach out to get help to recover.

Stay Strong. Stay Beautiful. Stay Safe.
Marie Olsson xx

RESOURCES:

International Resources
http://www.hotpeachpages.net/a/countries.html
Helpline 24/7 (VictimLink) (BC, Canada)
http://www.domesticviolencebc.ca/dvbc/index.page?
1-800-563-0808
Surrey Woman’s Center: http://www.surreywomenscentre.ca/
(Surrey, BC, Canada)

Sources: http://www.woodbridgedvrt.org/pages/fiveforms.html

Madison’s Story of Domestic Abuse

There can be many ways you can be a victim of domestic abuse. there are physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, economical. I have been through more then I want to admit, I’m also sorry this blog is late everyone. this topic was alot harder to write then the others were. I have been through a couple different types of abuse and I have also been a bystander for some and it’s not something I’m proud of but the fear at the time was alittle over powering.

I’ll start with the deffinition like I always do. I got this definition off of Dictionary.com.

Domestic Violence: Act of violence or abuse against a person living in one’s house hold, especially a member of one’s immediate family.

that may be the definition, but it can also come from a boyfriend/girlfriend.

Physical: In my very first relationship I was physically abused. I was really young at time only 8 years old, it wasn’t really a relationship it was more like a guess what your mine now from my boyfriend, Jack was 16 at that time he was my bestfriend big brother who took me in when I didn’t have anywhere to go. Jack would beat me everynight until I gave into him sexually. Yet he treated me like a princess during the day. If I got hit during the day he would tell me it was because “I missed behaved” or I didn’t follow his rules. I was at the age were i didn’t really understad that it wasn’t ok to be treated that way, and it happend so rarely in public that no one really took notice. I ended up in a vicious cycle that sent me into a deep depression, I ended up moving provinces because of it to get away from him.

Sexual: As I mentioned before I have been sexually assulted and raped by my boyfriend and his friends if I didn’t follow the house rules. I’ve had many boyfriends tell me that because I’m dating them they could do what ever they want and they could do no wrong because they owned me.  That tormented me because I’d feel so used and nothing more then a toy to them. Also I couldn’t leave because where would I go? I was always afriad.

I went through much more but That will be saved for another blog.

My feelings:It took me a long time to recover from some of my past relationships. I had so many trust issues that my boyfriend now is still trying to help me with. I feel bad seeing the fear in his face when I flinch when he gives me a hug or him having to keep reasuring me that he loves me because I sometimes can’t tell the difference. I would do anthing to give my heart and soul to him, and I know it will come in time, but there is always going to be fear until the light breaks through my heart once more. 🙂

Nothing is impossible; the word itself says ‘I’m possible’! By Audrey Hepburn
​~Madison Taylor.