Sunday, August 1, 2010

Silent Sunday blog

When is violence acceptable? In my opinion: NEVER. Back when I was in my 20s (in the 80s), I lived in various places where I was exposed to violence, hatred, bigotry, and domestic abuse. I was never the recipient, although I sometimes became the target due to stepping into and between situations best left to law enforcement. I have never been afraid to stand up for the innocent, the helpless, even as others looked or walked away.

Regardless of your beliefs or moral compass, if you don't offer a hand to those in crisis, you are as much to blame as the abuser. Sadly, many times the abused won't want your help, will look at you as interfering and nosy, and will make you the enemy, not realizing how or wanting to accept a way out of violent and sadistic situations.

This is not your typical blog of the day. It is not about art. It is not light reading, anymore than this post is light. It is a gut wrenching, tear filled blog about abused individuals who have, for one reason or another, decided to finally speak out. The persons who have shared stories at this site have been beaten, repeatedly raped (often by family or close friends), and abused in other ways. This is not a blog for the faint at heart. Although it is not a child friendly blog, it would be a good read for most teens and parents should discuss the issues it raises and lessons it teaches with their children. It IS a blog about domestic violence and sexual assault. It IS a blog where you and others can provide support, even if it's only in the form of a message left to the persons who have put their heart and soul into their personal stories.

Violence Unsilenced is a personal blog that was started about 18 months ago and is updated twice weekly. As stated on the blog, "The site was created by Maggie in February 2009, to shed light within the blogging community on abuse by giving survivors a voice." Although this blog is for survivors, it should be a lesson to those of us fortunate enough to have escaped these horrors in our own lives.

If you know someone in a bad relationship, don't walk away. If you live in an apartment and hear someone being beaten (walls are not soundproof in apartments), don't close your ears. If you see coworkers or children with suspicious bruises, don't turn away. If you see women or (especially) children who cringe when adults get too close, don't ignore the sign. If you see inappropriate sexual behavior or fondling, don't leave. If nothing else, call the police. I'm not sure about other states or countries, but in Kansas, once a domestic abuse or sexual battery complaint has been made, it must now be investigated, which was not always the case. Don't make victims become victims over and over due to your inaction.

And even though this is a very dark post, have a wonderful day, safe and secure in your home with loving friends, family, and your art.

8 thoughtful remarks:

Marit said...

Thanks for posting this! It is a very important message that you write here, and I totally agree with you! Don't look the other way... step in and help in any way you can!

Julia Dunnit said...

Not a dark post, a dark subject - one which needs airing..Miss Dunnit and I will visit Violence Unsilenced....jsut as soon as she gets outof bed. It's early. 11.06am!!!
Great post Elizabeth.

Lynn said...

Well said! YES!!!

Stephanie Mealor Corder said...

Wow, incredible post Elizabeth- and So important.

Doone said...

Have you ever read 'if no one speaks of remarkable things?' you would appreciate the novel and one that enables anyone to understand that silence is a crime. To talk can be to heal.

How does the abuser know they are out of control if one ever tells them to stop?

How does a child know what choice is if an alternative is never offered?

The Guilty are the Observers not the Doers.

for every one who turns their back there are those willing to stand and speak out,

I stand with you Elizabeth.....and my children are Speakers too,

Happy Sunday and Happy August,


Tess said...

This is an excellent post. A wake up call to those being abuced and those being the abuser. We must unite and fight for ourselves and those weaker than us. We must stop the violence any way we can. Kuddos to you Elizabeth for sopeaking out against domestic violence with this post. And to those of you reading this, remember domestic violence is not always shown outward. Often verbal violence can leave one scared for life...inside!

Lori Saul said...

A wonderful post about a very real subject. I grew up in a tough situation and gave back as a CASA many years ago. People need to reach out and be active especially if they have been victims themselves- thanks Eliazbeth for bringing attention to this and your featured site.

Melinda Cornish said...

I get in the middle just like you do...I cant take any kind of violence or unfairness and I dont think, I just try to stop it...Can you imagine just watching? it happens all the time.....