Family by Experience

There are so many of us walking around out there – abused … sexually … by clergy …. as a kid … as an adolescent …  To watch the dialogue on Twitter, Facebook and other forums, we all speak the same language.  We have the same pain, shame, and anger.  We have similar needs.  It’s as if there is an “abuse template” that is applied to a person once that line has been crossed and “you’re in the club”, whether you like it or not.

Can we help each other?  Will we drag each other down?  What is most helpful, and least painful?  I was reading a book this weekend about a man who had been raped as a boy.  He wrote a lot of detail about the experience.  It served only to touch that abused part of me and rattle it around a little.  His book was not helpful, except to see that he went through the same emotions.  Knowing what I know now about the book, I would not read it, nor will I recommend it.

One thing that is likely common among all of us is that we want to help others who have been abused.  I think we have to be careful in that, and to be aware of how our words or actions might translate to another victim.

Maybe we need to mix a little goodness in with the bad.  We really do have a loving God who wants so desperately to reach down and put his arms around us.  Often we shut him out because we are angry.  Been there, done that.  But when I take a deep breath, blow the tension away and give myself to him, then there is no need to guard against him.  His love penetrates any field I try to put up.

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