Friday, November 27, 2009

Daughters & Fathers

It amazes me when adult survivors of abuse are surprised when their fathers (or mothers) tell them, 'I love you', 'You are such a wonderful daughter' (or son) or, 'I am so proud of you', etc. Shouldn't they have been hearing that all their lives? Why should this be a surprise? I, too, know this all too well.

It saddens me to think it may be years for some survivors to wait to hear these words (or for some they may never hear these words from their parents).

It's only been approximately a month since my father and I have been reuinted. Since that time, we have been communicating via phone and e-mail. It's been wonderful. We have a lot of lost time to catch up on. Most survivors have a hard time with trust, a known fact. I am just learning from my stepmother many things about my father from years past, that I believe had I known years ago, may have changed how I viewed my father, as well as myself. *NOTE - My father was not my abuser

As a mature adult, I realize we can not go back in time. Knowing that, I must take newly learned information and do what is best, and use it to it's fullest potential.

I think if I can learn from the past, maybe we can open the doors for the future generations.

Thirty years have past since my rape, tears, pain, not to mention bruises and horrific relationships on my part. But you see, it's not just about the rape. It's a lot more than that. It's what was not done afterward. It was the lack of effort on my parents end. It was the lack of emotions showed to me. That is where a lot my pain came from. Then entered many unhealthy relationships! I also want to learn about why he did not do the things he "should have done" (I feel he should have done). Why he didn't communicate his feelings with me.

Why do some men communicate things with their daughters and some do not?

Daughters need to hear what their daddies are thinking and feeling Fathers!

Survivors want to hear from You!

Awareness is awareness. It is time that PARENTS own up to their end of the bargain. The insight I may learn from my father may be well worth digging into. I realize going in that it will be painful, but I feel that what I may end up finding is some valuable information that can be shared to prevent unhealthy relationships from happening in other families.

Something went very wrong a long time ago. We can't fix what happened 30 years ago, but we may be able to find out what could have been done differently, and share with others so they can change their lives now.

Of course, this is on the assumption that my father is willing. I am hoping that he will (positive assumption on my part), but through all the conversations we have had up to this point, and he has expressed his joy and proudness of my journey in life thus far; if he understands the depth his knowledge (and pain) would bring to myself and others, I welcome it with open arms (and wings).

I continue to inspire and empower survivors of abuse. That is my goal. Thank you Angela Shelton. I love you.

My story is forever ongoing, and I would have it no other way.

*NOTE - Not all survivors are able to have a positive relationship with their parents. This is an individual situation.

My Roadtrip to Charleston, SC

My trip to Charleston was very exciting! It was a spur of the moment roadtrip. An organization called, “Darkness to Light”, which is an organization that raises awareness of child sexual abuse by educating adults about the steps they can take to help prevent, recognize and react responsibly to the reality of child sexual abuse, was having a fundraising “Gala” on Thursday evening.

Angela Shelton was presenting the “Voice of Courage” award to Mackenzie Phillips on Thursday evening.

On Friday, since I was disappointed that I was not able to attend the Gala event, Angela and I were texting back and forth while I was at work about the possibiliy of me at least coming to Charleston so I could spend some time with Mackenzie, because she (Mackenzie) was going to be working with us on the Angela Shelton Foundation. The founder of “Darkness to Light” (Anne Lee) was having a dinner that evening (Friday) and had invited me to attend, as well. My heart stopped! My head was spinning. All I could think of was that I was at work, my responsibilities, etc. I told her it was a 5hr drive and "Are you crazy"! (Ha) She said, “Come on!” So, I told her I would see what I could do. I checked with my office and they said, “No problem”. So I called Joe and told him of the communications and he said, “No problem”…Wow! Needless to say, I was in heaven! So, by 1:30pm on Friday I was out of the office and headed to Charleston! Just like that!

I met individuals from CNN, and a designer from Los Angeles (Cory Savage). But the information I gained, the insight I now value, the warmth of individuals and the connections I felt, especially with Mackenzie was unbelievable. She has such a beautiful, giving soul. She wants to give back. This is what I find with most survivors. When they become a part of the chosen family of survivorhood, this is what many want to do with their lives. It is beautiful. As I was sitting with her thinking of (her story) we are all "one". She (and Angela) and I, each have different stories, come from different backgrounds, grew up in different parts of the country; but in the end we are all feeling the same. We are all wanting to make a difference in this world for other survivors of abuse. And when I say, "we are all feeling the same", I don't necessarily mean just about wanting to make a difference, that goes without saying, but also on the inside. We are all survivors. We have all SURVIVED. The three of us sitting together with such a varied background and have been brought together - it all happens for a reason! Angela Shelton does it again folks! She made it possible for me to be there for that experience. Ahhhh. Squish!

Angela, Mackenzie, Cory and I spent hours talking, sharing stories, laughing...that information will remain with me. What I can tell you is that this trip is one that I will never forget!

The trip wasn't all personal, we did conduct quite a bit of business in a short amount of time! We have wonderful news headed in everyones direction soon, so keep posted!

Thank you Darkness to Light. Thank you Angela Shelton Foundation. Thank you Cory Savage. Thank you Mackenzie Phillips. Thank you Angela Shelton for ALL you have done in my life! Oh, it’s great to be alive! God is good!

Update 10/9/10: Please visit A posting dated 10/8/10 will state the update. Also, as mentioned at the beginning of this blog, please read my new blog at . Thank you!