- 11 months ago
- Wedding: City, State
Perspective is everything.
Perspective is everything.
This part: “It’s your moral duty to not keep abuse secret – even from the person being abused.” is so true and also the hardest part to navigate skillfully.
I have a friend who was abused in her family for years. So were many of her siblings. Their abuser was the same person. She’s the one who acted out the most and called it out and, years later, speaks brutally honestly about it (because she’s clear that it is not her shame but the abuser’s). She has suffered consequences for that- even from the other people who went through the same things as her in the same household. It’s deep.
If it’s children realizing that other children are being abused that’s an entirely different situation than if there are adults involved. Children can’t be expected to speak up if they know of another child who is being abused within their own family and then made to feel shame because they didn’t speak up. Most don’t have the life experience, or the bravery, to handle things like that.
Adults are different. They should confront and they should report if they know children are being abused.
If an adult knows another adult is being abused it becomes a bit of a shady area. Many abuse victims will cut off anyone who tries to intervene for the abuse victim’s sake and that can be scary for those who want to speak up. If you’re cut off how can you still be there for them when they finally decide to reach out?
In an ideal world everyone should report abuse, open communication with the abuse victim, etc. I’ve been an adult in an abusive situation and some people knew but didn’t do anything, I certainly didn’t blame them for what he was doing to me. I’ve spoken up when a friend was being physically abused and our friendship got more distant. It’s just not a ideal world.
Without knowing more about the circumstances, especially the ages of the author and the people she is addressing this to at the time, I am sorry to say I disagree with her. If she was a child and they were adults, yes, they were wrong. But assuming the more likely scenario where they were all adults or all children, it is far from black and white. It sounds like she feels safer blaming her friends than blaming her abuser or — again, depending on circumstances — evaluating how her own decisions might possibly have made a difference. I am absolutely not blaming the victim — she is not to blame, but neither are her friends. It seems unfair for her to condemn others for accepting what she herself was accepting. And it does not seem realistic for her to say “years and years of abuse would’ve been cut short.” There is no way to know that. I am very sad about what she went through. My mom was a victim of domestic violence so I have seen how soul-crushing it is and am very compassionate to survivors. But I don’t think it’s healthy or helpful to blame others for not knowing what to do or say, when those others were not there behind the closed doors.
I’ve had 2 close friends in abusive relationships. Multiple people (including myself, my husband, other friends and family members) tried to talk to them about it. They didn’t want to hear it and just got angry and defensive.
I’d actually guess that she had friends who did try to say something to her and she just wasn’t willing to listen while she was in the abusive relationship. I agree with Daisey_Mae, the author isn’t to blame but neither are her friends.
Totally different situation if we’re talking about kids but I didn’t get that impression from the article.