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Posts published in “Abuse”

The Rapist in the Mirror

The powerful emotional link that binds families who grow up together often manifests itself in curious ways when adult adoptees meet their biological families. Yet as common as it is, few want to touch it because--well--incest. But this issue needs more awareness, and not only because according to recent reports it's on the rise. Also because I believe that it's a fertile ground for a particular type of abuse.

No, Doesn’t Always Mean No

I can understand of course, why that always has to be the line in our culture of legal, illegal. Ethical, unethical. But language both drives and is driven by, humanity and culture. Defining polar opposites of 'yes and no' means simply by their definitions these opposites are reinforced. Of course they do exist but as with everything else... they exist on a spectrum. Our positions of 'yes' and 'no' are only two binary values in a world full of grey.

And so the Abused, Becomes the Abuser

Yet emotional abuse is incredibly damaging, perhaps in part because it cannot be recognised and dealt with in the same way. Emotional abuse gets swept under the carpet because it is supported and perpetuated by society as a whole.

Like The Poppy

These are the piercing secrets we whisper to one another in our late night conversations, in those moments of vulnerability, before putting our metaphorical masks on again. Life is a game. A game driven by our kinks, our fascination with power and objectification.

How Our Disgust for Abuse Erases the Abused

We are programmed as human beings with a biological reaction called 'disgust' and as a society, have reinforced this through any number of mechanisms to be able to live together. It's part of the reason why so many stories of abuse remain untold and why many abusers can go on abusing, sometimes over decades. Abusees become disgusting by their association to abuse. Their stories are often doubted, shunned or dismissed as inconsequential.

Obscene Love

'Couples can communicate without words,' you said and you were right. I knew for instance that a raise of your eyebrow meant I had overstepped the fine line of being generously open and embarrassing myself... and you. A curl of your lip set me on edge wondering what I had done and where I had gone wrong. Our non-verbal communication grew until that night I didn't understand that my refusal to participate in a foursome you'd organized without telling me, would mean that you would punch me.

How Can We End Abuse?

We undermine our children's powers of consent because we know better the repercussions of their desires. Which mother might not consider a threat or worse, to prevent something which we could conceivably justify as 'for their own good'? Where is the line?

It Starts with the Little Things

Abusive? Oh no, I said confidently, and still believed it even then. But I stayed in my apartment, fearing to go outside because I saw you waiting for me across the street.