Bridie Farrell’s Testimony to the Senate

Two weeks ago, 4 Olympians sat in front of Senate to talk about child sexual abuse in the world of Olympics. I watched the whole meeting and I was amazed at the eloquence of how they all spoke. But I was particularly impressed by the comments Bridie said during her time. It was a concept we don’t think too much about, just like thoughts and prayers. I found it intriguing how many times the Senate members told the survivors about their bravery, even after her comments. So below you will find her quote and a link to the video. If you would like to hear her full comments, it starts about 28:00.

Do you think I am brave?

Many praise my bravery. Our bravery. Bravery for re-telling our stories. Bravery in telling the truth. Please take pause. What do you acknowledge as being brave? Standing up to the man that abused me 20 years is brave. Then please recognize the hypocrisy of asking a child athlete to report sexual abuse while it is still happening. For many children, it is impossible to disclose molestation or rape because children do not have the vocabulary. Which was just said a minute ago. I did not learn that being molested by a 33-year-old man was a crime until I was at Cornell and I was 27 years old. Over 80% of child sexual perpetrators know their victim. On average survivors of child sexual abuse do not disclose until their 40s. 1 in 6 boys are victims of child sexual abuse by their 18th birthday. 1 in 4 girls are victims of child sexual abuse by their 18th birthday. I have 3 sisters and 2 brothers, so I am the statistic of 1 in 4.

–Bridie Farrell

I am so proud of the men and women who have been able to come forward throughout this stage of the #MeToo movement. I don’t think any of us thought this day would come, but now that it has, it’s time to keep moving forward and allowing our voices to be heard.

When You Find Out You’re Not Quite Done

Every time I think I have tackled the big healing hurdle, life kicks me in the butt and tells me that I am not finished.

  • When I was raped and worked through my feelings, I became an advocate for those who couldn’t speak.
  • When I realized I was abused with religion, I fought for my daughter not to be baptized until she was old enough. I even started taking her to other religions to learn about them, through acceptance, not fear.
  • When I confronted my fears of being gay as homophobia, I became pro-equal rights for LBGT community.
  • When I got out from under control of my ex’s financial ways, I learned about finances and created my own budgeting system.
  • When I realized I had a bully of a boss, I, well I cried and hid when I lost my job. But when I got fired for asking to do my job, well, again I cried and hit. Hmmm. Guess nothing has changed on that front.

This is my next hurdle. It’s weeks before Christmas, and I have yet been fired from my second job this year. The first was a job for over 2 years where I was belittled, talked down to and told I did nothing right. Then came a job where I did everything right that my last bully of a boss said I did wrong. I thought nothing could go wrong! And yet I was wrong. I thought I had figured out my life after healing, but one thing keeps happening. When it comes to jobs, I have no confidence. I went from abusive relationship to an abusive job to a job who fires their employee of the month for asking to do her job.

I have been out of work for 3 weeks, with $700 to my name, 2 months of mortgage behind and a past-due car note. I have been absolutely devastated. Part of me doesn’t want to ask what did I do wrong, in the thought of grouping two different but bad experiences together. The first one, I understand that one by now. I would have quit long before they fired me if it hadn’t been for working on my habitat for humanity home. Especially after being praised at my last job for everything the first one complained about, definitely got my confidence up.

But… the day we learned Trump was going to be the next president, I asked my manager to stop the political banter, conspiracy theories, the gay jokes and etc. He said he would talk to everyone in the morning the next day, and within 3 hours I was let go. I keep replaying how bad that week was and thinking that would be the worst day, but it wasn’t.

Now, I am here wondering what I am going to do and how I am going to be able to get past this crushing depression that has taken over me. I have had 3 helpful people in my life throughout this and even my ex and his new wife have tried to help. These are good things, but it being this time of year and after working so hard, getting employee of the month 3 weeks before I was let go and everything just hurts.

The whole point of this post is to show that no matter how many things you work on, there may be some difficult parts in your life that still need work. AND that you aren’t alone. The confident me seems to vanish when things like this happen. Not because I am not confident, but because I haven’t found that confident part of me in a work atmosphere. It feels totally different for me. At work, I am on their dime, working for their cause and being totally professional. In my personal time, I am allowed to talk about things I post here, share videos/articles on facebook and twitter that are political or my personal beliefs. All the things you can’t talk about work, you can in your personal life. And I like that.

When I can feel like ME, no matter what I am doing, I feel more comfortable and confident. So now, I feel its time to find that confidence at work. No matter what I am doing. To finally say I AM ENOUGH.

If anyone has any suggestions or would like to express what they are finding they need help with, please feel free to comment or contact me. None of us are alone.

Here is another video that has helped me express needed emotions lately. I hope you like.

“Hold, Hold on, Hold on to me. ‘Cause I’m a little unsteady. A little unsteady.
Mama, come here. Approach, appear. Daddy, I’m alone. ‘Cause this house don’t feel like home.
If you love me, don’t let go.
Mother, I know that you’re tired of being alone. Dad, I know you’re trying to fight when you feel like flying.”

From Homophob to Pro-LGBT: Finding Acceptance in Myself and Others

Lately, I have felt compelled to speak about a topic that I don’t and haven’t shared with anyone, except my counselor and one friend. No matter how many times I try to articulate what I feel and how it’s impacted me, it never comes out the way it feels in my heart and understood in my brain. In my head, I’m hoping this writing comes out perfectly how I feel. Let’s see…

In the last year, I have been faced with a lot things, as they say, exposure therapy. It’s made me realize that I am extremely pro-LGBTQ. It’s not about being gay or a lifestyle choice that *I* approve of… Actually, I disagree with calling someone who loves someone a “lifestyle choice.” It’s about accepting someone for who they without fear of rejection or ridicule.


When I was in middle school, I was bullied and sexually abused by a girl who lived down the street from me. After “my first kiss” being taken out of fear by this bully along with other sexual things, I was very confused. A year later, this same bully came out as being gay. All I could remember feeling was fear that it meant I was gay too. I never told anyone. Actually, I held onto those same feelings for over 10 years.

When I was married, I was in the Mormon church. I was indoctrinated between my ex and the church about family and marriage being between a man and woman only. I subscribed to this way of living because it was easy to, until it wasn’t. One day, I had to deal with my past abuses, yet I never had all the details. Things got so bad that I was praying and begging God to forgive me for these actions in my past. I talked to my husband at the time and he ignored me. So, by what I read with the church doctrines, I went to Bishop and confessed. Even after him saying I was ok, I was still distraught for months. All this came crashing down as I was graduating college. I even sent an email out to my family about going through stuff, but all they head was me saying I was perfect and they were flawed.

After months of searching out my feelings, talking to counselors and friends about all my sexual abuses, I finally dealt with being abused by a girl. But, the fear of being gay still stayed. It was so bad, that I would continue to beat myself up internally and finally admit that I felt like a homophob. I still had kept this abuse hidden because when I did speak out about it, I was told it was ok that I was gay, which I heard that for two years, and from abuse survivors no less. Now don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t hatefully going after gay people, but I also know in my heart, I didn’t accept their relationship as legitimate. Mostly it was out of confusion, past memories, and my fear of the abuse happening again.

In 2013, I was finally free from the fear of being gay. I found who I was and accepted my sexuality as mine, without fear of others thinking. And in the last year, I have come across many loving people on the LGBTQ spectrum who have become good friends. I went from closed off from anything that reminded me of the past to accepting everyone. I know it sounds funny to say, but the BDSM community helped me with this by just being around people and seeing how comfortable they were being who they were.


Every time I look back on the last 15 years, I wonder what difference it would make if the world was accepting of all relationships, not just the ones that feel comfortable for them. I live in Texas. Between the Bible belt and the conservative values, if I was gay (with or without the abuse), I don’t know what would have happened to that young girl.

My goal is to now help change the world for the better. I know how devastating it felt keeping those feelings to myself and I would never want anyone to have to go through those questions alone. After educating and healing myself, I feel I have a duty to pay it forward. Especially because I have an 8 year old who is growing up very quick. I know the values my ex is teaching her and all I can do is hope that I can help her accept and love everyone. Not just the LGBT community, but people of different colors and religions also.

I still don’t feel like I am able to adequately express my feelings and concerns. All I can say is I came from a place of fear, latching on to homophobia, until I educated myself and accepted myself. It opened my eyes up to a growing world of hate. We may have come farther in the realm of equality for the LGBT community, but we have a lot further to go. Young children are standing up and standing out as being different and I would hate to see that go away. Especially since so many others are still too afraid to.

In the spirit of the Holidays, I would hope that each one of you reading this could reach out to loved ones that are hurting, even if you can’t see their pain. So many give up the fight before they even begin, when all it might have taken was a kind ear or shoulder to cry on. It’s amazing what compassion can do.

Here’s a beautiful song to pass on. I have to remind myself when times are tough. Hope it helps someone.

“She don’t see her perfect, she don’t understand she’s worth it or that beauty goes deeper than the surface. Oh, oh. So to all the girls that’s hurting let me be your mirror, help you see a little bit clearer the light that shines within.”

“There’s a hope that’s waiting for you in the dark. You should know you’re beautiful just the way you are. You don’t have to change a thing, the world can change it’s heart.”

Questioning My Rape

In the last week or so, I have been looking back at my past journal entries. Some of them are goofy, but then, some are very insightful.

The entry that stuck out in my mind today was the day after I started talking about my past rapes. I started questioning whether or not I had been raped. I feel this is relevant because many people who were raped start self doubting and worrying that they were making things up in their head.

Anyways, this is my writing from July 22, 2011. Would be interest to see if anyone else felt the same way when dealing with their abuse.


Even after all I am writing and reading, there is still something in my head telling me that it wasn’t rape and it as just a misunderstanding that I caused. He didn’t “force” me or “threaten” me, did he? Is this a fine line I should never cross? Denial likes to sleep in. That’s why I want to write it!

Did I bring this upon myself? Do I like playing the victim> Is this a way for me to feel better about sinning? Is it really force or threat if he doesn’t say much and doesn’t hit me? Is there a difference between rape and sexual assault? If so can I really use the R-word? Why do I have to dwell on this? I have been married for almost 4 years, have a beautiful 3 year old, and it happened 9 years ago. Should I just let it go as if it never happened? Does anything I do or say make the situation any different? Who even defines what the R-word means?

So many self doubting questions come into my mind. Why did I let this happen to me? Why do I fell I need to tell my family? What good will it even do? Why does Jack’s life get to be good after the event? Why does he get to be married? Shouldn’t his wife know the truth? Is that petty? Will they call me a liar? Should I message him on Facebook and ask if he has found God and changed since High School? Does any of this even make a difference? I have a lot of praying and faith to rely on… a lot!

I just really want to get my story out. I don’t want anyone else to feel the way I feel. I feel alone right now. On the internet I haven’t been able to find any similar circumstances like mine. Am I the only one this has happened to? If so, I hope it ends with me and my story!

Rape Shows All Around, but I Survived

I have survived a tough weekend, when it comes to rape reminders. I was binge watching Switched at Birth, and there was a storyline dealing with a campus rape. The way they played it out made it seem like both people were good and what happened was bad, without placing blame on anyone. In the end, the guy did get kicked out of school (saw that part of the episode Sunday night).

Friday night, right before bed was the first time I saw the starting scenes of the rape issue. It did affect me going to sleep all that well. I was texting my friend Michael but it was hard for him to understand, plus he just told me before that he was falling asleep. He tried though. Anyways, I read some articles on the show’s rape story and after a while, fell asleep.

Saturday was pretty rape-free. I didn’t have any reminders of it as I was so busy with friends and family and the dedication.

On Sunday though, I watched Game of Thrones with Chris at his house. There are many rape issues. One of the women in that show had to learn how to have sex with her rapist. Apparently women had no rights and men did whatever they want. In the end, she lost her baby with him and he died.

Anyways, once I got home after watching Game of Thrones, I finished the second part of the Switched at Birth episode. I knew I wouldn’t be all happy go lucky feeling but I didn’t like the grouchy down feeling either. I knew I had to get past it and watch it through.

The whole time I was watching Game of Thrones and Switched at Birth, I was texting Michael. I told him more about me. Told him my advocacy will come out and that I am more sensitive to this stuff as it happened to me. He understood as much as he could. I don’t blame others for not seeing things the way I do, but however, I will not hold back my feelings and thoughts on an ISSUE.

I am so glad that I did not crumble and that I did what was needed to get through the weekend. Sometimes just talking about this issue helps. Sometimes I need to read and do research on the subject. Sometimes I need a distraction. And other times, its all about finding a way to relax. This time, I let my advocate come out along with a day of distraction.

Life as I know it.

My life has been turned around in the most amazing way in the last year. I am only days away from owning my first home, I have a new car and am out of control of my ex-husband, and I have found my sexuality, learned about dating and found a path that I want to take in my life.


In June of last year, I joined a group of people after reading some adult books. I was in the mood to explore myself and my boundaries. In doing so, I learned a lot about myself. Each person is different in the path they choose after abuse, mine just includes the infamous BDSM. Yes, that is correct, I do not go to church… I am no longer the Molly Mormon I once tried to be. I am not a hypocrite who would go to church while doing everything against the church.

The topic of BDSM can be touchy for a few survivors, but for me, it was a chance to explore my sexuality in a safe environment. In fact, I have found more rules and safety guidelines that I have in the ‘vanilla’ community. I went into this knowing little but told to educate myself. Honestly, anyone getting into something new should educate themselves anyways.


Along the way, new friends I met introduced me to a friend of theirs. I met him and he was really nice. He was passionate about what he did and wanted to help me in my passions for supporting rape victims. He was the first guy that I let in my heart… and my first heartbreak after the divorce. I learned many lessons about the non-dating relationship and that I am not fully healed in that department. I have gone on some dates, but nothing substantial.

After the falling out of that FWB relationship, I realized that he has his own issues that he needs to get through, and that I relied on him too much, instead of being myself. We continue to be friends, but I now know that waiting and healing need to come first before I get into a relationship.


So last March, I applied for a Habitat for Humanity home. I was approved in May and started working on my sweat equity. A year later, I have finished my 350 hours, have a few more classes to take, and my dedication is on July 9th!!! I know I am going to be a ball of tears! We started building in January of this year, and now the countdown has began. I have so many plans for this new home… from building the fence, painting the walls, decor-ing out the rooms and some DIY projects to better our home.

Since the divorce, my daughter and I have been living in transitional housing 2-year program at the Women’s Center for the past 3 years.. It has been amazingly helpful, but I am past that phase in my life and am ready to start some new adventures.


Along with the new adventures of home ownership, I started a new job which afforded me the ability to trade my vehicle in… you know, the vehicle my ex purchased (which I cosigned when we were married) and then two weeks later bought another car, letting that car almost go to repo. Yeah, I am out from underneath him and his stupid car! It took a year of trying to trade in and refinance the car until it FINALLY happened! Trust me, I was in tears then too.

Things have not been easy in my life and not that I am happy that I was abused, got divorced, fired from my job, and etc… but I am happy that I recuperated from all of the disasters put in my way. Oh yeah, my boss of 2.5 years was emotionally abusive and I never had job security…. finally in January he fired me. It took 2 months but I finally found a new job, a non-abusive job!!!

I want to tell anyone reading this that a better life is possible. I hear stories every so often about those in situations that are less desirable. I wish I could help everyone, but the issue is, unless you are ready to move on and heal, you’re gonna be stuck. If you want help, I am here to point you in the right direction. Especially if you are in Texas, I have resources already together. If not, I would do research for you. We all just need one person who knows we can do better… sometimes that’s all it takes. Please don’t give up on yourself. Please fight and let those who support you be there for you. Until you speak up… no one can help.

Anonymous Groups

Below is information about Anonymous Groups for different topics.

  • Alcoholics Anonymous,  an international fellowship of men and women who have had a drinking problem. It is nonprofessional, self-supporting, multiracial, apolitical, and available almost everywhere. There are no age or education requirements. Membership is open to anyone who wants to do something about his or her drinking problem.
  • Narcotics Anonymous, – a global, community-based organization with a multi-lingual and multicultural membership. he group atmosphere provides help from peers and offers an ongoing support network for addicts who wish to pursue and maintain a drug-free lifestyle. Our name, Narcotics Anonymous, is not meant to imply a focus on any particular drug; NA’s approach makes no distinction between drugs including alcohol. Membership is free, and we have no affiliation with any organizations outside of NA.
  • CoDependents Anonymous, – a fellowship of men and women whose common purpose is to develop healthy relationships. The only requirement for membership is a desire for healthy and loving relationships.
  • Emotions Anonymous, –  a twelve-step organization, similar to Alcoholics Anonymous. Our fellowship is composed of people who come together in weekly meetings for the purpose of working toward recovery from emotional difficulties. EA members are from many walks of life and are of diverse ages, economic status, social and educational backgrounds. The only requirement for membership is a desire to become well emotionally.
  • Debtors Anonymous, – Debtors Anonymous offers hope for people whose use of unsecured debt causes problems and suffering in their lives and the lives of others. Most people incur debt at various points in their lives, whether taking out a student loan for college or buying a first car or a house. For some people, unsecured debt, which is debt not secured by some form of collateral such as a house or car, becomes an addictive and unmanageable part of their lives. Debting is more than just sensationalized shopping. It can cripple and ruin someone’s life. Debt is like alcohol for the alcoholic, food for the compulsive eater, and gambling for the compulsive gambler.
  • Gamblers Anonymous, www.GamblersAnonymous.orga fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from a gambling problem. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop gambling. There are no dues or fees for Gamblers Anonymous membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions.

Texas Support

Sexual/Domestic Abuse

Mental Health Assistance

Physical Health

Shelter Programs
Domestic Shelters Directory & Homeless Shelter Directory

Long Awaited Update… This Blog Will Continue!

It’s amazing how long I have been away from this site. So much has gone on in the last year. Here is just a short list of what I am up to.


  • I stepped away from religion altogether. I do not identify as Mormon or Religious. I still say I am Christian, but opening up my eyes to the whole world has made me want to continue to look at things and learn from everyone, not stay in the restraints I was put in during my marriage.
  • Took on my ex’s car so I don’t have another repo on my credit report. Not the best thing, but I am keeping my credit in good standing, after I paid off all of my debt. Within 1 year, I paid off 9,600 dollars worth of debt!
  • Got into Habitat for Humanity. I have 150 hours of sweat equity so far. Only 200 more until I get my own home! I was approved for a 2 bedroom home. Just big enough for me and my daughter. Plus, I have friends and family who want to help me get my hours. It’s hard doing it on my own, so my loved ones are motivating me 🙂
  • Started talking to a man. Letting a man in emotionally is scary. i have had many tears so far, and I am not even dating him yet. I know there are good guys out there. I have met one. I get to help him in his abusive situation, and he gets to support and uplift me. What more can I ask of right now?
  • Got into a lifestyle that fits me. Made friends and became more social. I went from having one friend to having many, many people who I get along with. It has busted me out of my shell and helped me open up.
  • Have faced my fears of same-sex friendships after my abuse. I have gotten more comfortable around girls and women. I have friends, can hug them, can be close and goofy with them. I am not healed, but I am far into my recovery. Maybe one day, I will talk about my new life fully and explain.

In all of the growing and changing that I have done, I have not forgot about my passion. In fact, my passion has become stronger. It’s great to have people in your life that makes you want to do better. That is what I have come across the last month.

So, I am picking up one of my biggest projects. Finding helpful organizations and getting the information to those who need it. I haven’t figured out how I will get this to people, but I think resources are important. The reason this is so important to me is because those who need it have difficulties getting the resources, especially if they are afraid to ask. So that is what I am going to do… share and post and get the information out!

Abusers on the State Sex Offender Registry

Possible Triggers

The last 24-hours have been amazingly crazy. I just dog sat at my mom’s house. I was very apprehensive about doing so, as my abusers mom lives down the street, and I saw my abuser last week by my mom’s house. I was there Friday night to Sunday afternoon. No sign of K, which is a very good thing.

Saturday night, I was contemplating all that has gone on with K. I guess being there brought a lot up for me, which is, I assume, to be expected. I found out a few days ago that K’s case went in front of a grand jury but they found no reason to press charges against her. They even mentioned my statement, but chalked it up to “kids experimenting” just because she was my age. Makes me sick to think back at that. If it were just experimentation, would I be so traumatized? Hmmm, I think not!

Anyway, I was so upset that she wasn’t at least charged as a sex offender. I mean, she admitted she had a sexual relationship with a student. So I decided to go onto the state sex offender website just to see. What I found shocked me. I searched for K’s name, nothing. I then decided to search for my other abusers name. I started out with J’s, nothing again.

So I searched my other ex-boyfriend. And… HIS PICTURE CAME UP! He was charged back in 2009 for “Rape Using Force” against a 27-year-old female. My heart sunk. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I tried to contact my friends and support but wasn’t having much luck. THIS was another guy that I was told raped me. Just one I never dealt with or addressed or even admitted it happened. I am still stunned. It brought back so many memories and so much confusion.

I brushed this “rape” off to the side because I didn’t feel anyone would ever think it was rape or that it was bad enough to have anything even done. I know that’s horrible of me to say, but I have made statements about past abuse of two of my abusers already and nothing came of them. Two have not been reported and I don’t know if I could ever go about doing that again.

This abuser was my boyfriend for 3 months until he decided it was too much and just wanted to be f-buddies. Every time we went over to his house, it was to have sex or “do homework” as my parents thought.

One day, he dropped me off at my house with a friend. He said he needed to use the bathroom, so I very hesitantly said yes. I didn’t want any guys in my house after what J had done to me 6 months prior. He went to the bathroom and then started advancing me to have a quickie. I kept telling him no, that I didn’t wanna do it in my mom’s house, and resisting. I was pinned between him and my bed. Kept resisting and telling him no, but after his persistence, I stopped saying no. He lifted my skirt, did his thing, as I lay there upset that I let it happen again. He finished and left.

Of course I felt like shit and was confused, but I stopped saying no. I never once thought that me saying no, even once should have had him stop. I am told differently now. In light of the new information I have, it has me questioning everything that happened between me and this guy.

So here is the scenario that keeps running through my head. This guy contacted me back in 2009. He wanted to meet up with me and apologized for being a jerk. He said he just got out of the military and was dishonorably discharged because of some crap that was going on. I didn’t think to ask as I hadn’t heard from him in over 4 years and was newly married with a baby and didn’t want to bring my past into my present.

Now I want to know why he contacted me back then. My friend says it was to cover his own ass. None of it makes sense to me. Plus, he has two Facebook accounts. I didn’t think sex offenders were allowed to be on social media. Obviously I will report him on Facebook, as that is against their rules, but what else do I do? Do I do anything?

I have been fighting the urge to send him a message asking him why he contacted me, and such, to find out more information, but why would I want to talk to someone who hurt me? What if it makes things worse? As much info as I want to know, I know you can never get information out of a liar.

I just think this is such a crazy time in my life. Between my ex and his idiocy, and K and JR, it is a lot to take in. I am glad that he was changed and is a sex offender for raping that woman. Now it will come to my own processes of how I handle my own abuse from him (far more than the little blip I mentioned here). I will take this new information as a good thing and “run with it” to help my healing.

New Things and Unfortunate Encounters

I have been meaning to post here in the last few months as much has changed in my life. If I could find the time in this busy world, I would have written a lot. I am going to try to dedicate time on the weekends to posting.

  • I now know what sex is, not abuse
  • Thinking about telling my mom about my first abuser and the extent of her abuse
  • Possibly, find different avenues to break the silence
  • I tried to find out what happened with my first abusers case
  • Ran into her the next day, outside my mom’s house
  • Looking for volunteer opportunities to help abused people

I will talk more about the first one later on, and the others at a different point. I think its very difficult to process where I with all of that. My religious standing has been non-existent for months now. I struggle spiritually and need to take my own time and not have anyone force that part of my life. Seeing my abuser after 14 year was a bit chaotic in my brain for a day or two.

So, I have been trying to contact the police department to see what happened to my abusers case. I talked to a prosecutor secretary and went last April 4th to the police to speak to a corporal and then a detective. I then met with the detective to give my evidence that I had from the year 2000! Surprised I held onto it. But anyways, I did all that and kinda shut down. Talking that much about something I never dealt with really affected me, especially since I had just started a new job a week before. Crazy timing!

Well, months had passed. Friends and support asked how the case was going, but I never responded because I could not get up enough courage to find out. I did find out back then that they had found the three or four people I had mentioned and that they had confirmed my statement. But as far as her trial, still nothing.

So I went to the police department, instead of calling, because calling got me nowhere. In the past, the detective said he didn’t know and would look into it and call me back, with no results or communication. So, I went. Shook the whole time, had a mini break down on the way home. And then tried to tell myself that what I did was a good thing, even though I didn’t feel strong enough.

Without that being in my head at all, I was at my moms house going grocery shopping with my step dad. When we returned home. My abuser and her mother were walking down the street. By the time we turned the corner, she was at my car door. I stared down, didn’t do anything but look at my phone. I couldn’t react because my step dad had no clue the trauma this female put me through. And it was not the time to mention it.

I am still shocked that I saw her. So many thoughts ran through my head. Is she living at her moms? Is she on bail? Is her agreement with the courts that she has to live at home? Is she a sex offender? Is she not? Does she know that I am the one that told on her? How will I ever stay the weekend over there knowing there is a possibility that she is down the street? I promised my mom I would house sit this weekend, but was I strong enough to do it?

I have no answers.

I talked this all out with my therapist on Monday, and I still have no answers. I shut down. I can’t handle it or process it. Maybe part of me doesn’t want to deal with it. Maybe I am trying to see how far I can hide from this before I HAVE to deal with it.

I don’t have any or all the answers. I know that I will get through this. I will work through it. I am stronger than I was over a decade ago. I have support and strength behind me that will push me forward. My therapist continuously asks me what it is that keeps me on the path I am on. I don’t know what it is. I have a passion and strength and determination to move on with my life and help others. I will continue to work on my own healing and help others when I can. That is just who I am.

This little bump in the road was going to happen no matter what. It was only inevitable. Her mom lives down the street from my mom. I am surprised it took two years for that fear I had to catch up with reality. I know I need to confront things and there is a reason why it happened now, just like there was a reason I found about it last year. I will face this. It wont hide, no matter how much I want it to. Anyone who thinks they can hide from their abuse is only fooling themselves.

One Year and One Day Later

One year, one day ago (November 3, 2012), I was a stay at home mom recovering from leaving a mental hospital, separated from my husband, who left that day to go to Oklahoma, with no money, no job, and no way of providing for my daughter. Within the last year, I found a job that supported my daughter while living at my moms house, fought for custody of our daughter and won. We moved out of my moms in august and my little one is striving in kindergarten after a few rough weeks. And I have now started a new job making 1/3 more money. I got my car back (after 9 weeks without), working on getting my meds straightened out, and was blessed with a larger working interview pay than what was originally offered. I now have a job that is suited towards my skills and utilized, and have the whole support of my old job which wants to stay in contact with me. And I have hope that I will be able to pay off debts and debtors and save for a new car to get back on track. I don’t know how I got here because I was scared to death to step up. As my lawyer said, I was a beaten down woman who they had to get onto for not making decisions. Along with the new job I started today, I was just asked to be a part of the newly formed Women’s Resident Council with three other women. And I shared my story with my a woman here who is just now talking about her rape and gave my story to my caseworker. This day couldn’t represent more of the person in becoming if I planned it all myself. I just have to be so grateful for all the help I had along the way because without support and standing up and speaking out for myself, I would have NEVER made it this far. Staying silent will never work. And I promise anyone who stands for what they believe and refuses to keep his or her “dirty little secret” to protect the abuser will not only help themselves heal but help others accept their own abuse. As much as I’ve wanted to cry lately (for my own abuse from my ex), I wanna cry just as much for the person I am today. I just wanted to share some positives as not everything in our life will always be negative.

The Enduring Marriage… Marital Rape? IPSV?

My friends often wonder why I feel so bad for those who were marital raped, when I too was. They couldn’t understand why I did not see what was happening in my own relationship, but could see it in others. Only thing we could come up with was the strength of my denial at that stage. I majorly minimized my own abuse and continually defended him and tried to make sense of something that made absolutely no sense. The longer time passes and the more my ex does, the easier it is to get out of denial, not that dealing with the truth is easy though. He has a pattern and it’s made me realize that he never loved me and only used and abused me.

And now the stuff with my ex is really starting to get to me. I think its time to share some of our 5 year history and get it out once and for all. Honestly, I don’t know what you want to call it. It makes me feel vulnerable to even think about. So I am just gonna lay it all out there. All I know, it wasn’t loving. He wasn’t loving.


When we were dating:

We were friends as he was 37 and I was 18 when we met. He was also married. We were coworkers and I told him, after his wife left him, that I would never date a coworker. I didn’t know he liked me until two months later when he kissed me.

For the first three weeks, he slept on the couch and gave me his bed. But then he had a party with me, my friend, her bo and his roommate. He bought $100 worth of alcohol and by the end of the night, we were all wasted. I had just turned 19. Since my friend was over, Marc slept in the bed with me. He started kissing and rubbing and taking off my clothes. At one point, he was on top of me, about to go in me, when he asked, are you sure? I just nodded. He did all the work. I just laid there. Afterwards, for months, he made me feel guilty saying that he wished we would have waited and weren’t drunk.

About three months later he asked me to marry him. And two months after that, I got back into church. We had one month before the wedding. During that month, I asked him for us not to have sex until then. Part of me wanted it to be special and the other part knew how the church frowned upon sex before marriage. I asked, he said ok.

Within those 4 weeks, he kept advancing me for sex. Telling me how it was ok and trying to convince me. I would continue to tell him no, I didn’t want to, I wanted to wait, over and over again, but in the end, I stopped saying no and it happened anyways. Nine days before our wedding, I broke down in tears begging him for us to please not have sex anymore until the wedding. That it was only 9 days. It finally stopped. I shut this part out of my brain until years later it surfaced. I was so ashamed. He still denies that we had sex during that time. Just told me to pray and ask for forgiveness.

After we were married:

Six weeks after we were married, I found out I was pregnant. Which was a shocker for me as he told me when we were dating that he had a vasectomy and couldn’t have any more kids. When I showed him the test and asked him about it, he told me, “no I told you I went to the doctor but I never got it done.”

Throughout the next 4 years, I was going throughout life like my past abuse and rapes didn’t affect me. What I now realize is that they affected me very much.

During intimacies, I would check out and never realized it. My husband never asked if I was ok or stopped to check on me. It took 4 years to realize this happened, and when I talked to him about it, he said, “I know. I could tell when you didn’t want it or wanted if to be over with, so I just tried to hurry.”

I had to rub him to “get him in the mood” (even if it wasn’t my intention, remember I rubbed him every night, so there was no saying when). But on the nights he mentioned having sex, I would have to rub him and bite on his nipples (which I HATED doing). Sometimes this would get him to the point of already wanting to cum. But he would still want “sex” to cum in me. I didn’t realize. And then the other times, when he felt like it , would climb on top of me and start pushing his way into me. He was turned on I guess but not me so it took a bit of time and energy for him to get in me. Instead of easing in or getting me aroused for sex, he would put a lot of pressure on me to get himself in me. Sometimes he would be more gentle, other times, not so much. I would hurt days later, but thought it was normal. Between the two scenarios, sex lasted between 15 seconds to 2-3 minutes. It never did anything for me, most of the time I was checked out anyways.

He usually wanted on top, missionary. But on certain occasions, he wanted me to be on top. Or, his most lazy position was laying on his side trying to spoon me (vaginally or anally). Both hurt, were uncomfortable, and extremely less intimate. This became sex for the longest time. Most of the time in the late hours of the night, him with his eyes closed half asleep but trying to get sex because he was horny. Sometimes I would be out and he would wake me enough to start it. It did nothing for me, sometimes id be barely awake but after he was done he’d be asleep and I’d be awake. He liked “having sex” and getting off because it helped him sleep. So I was a means to that.

I would rub him almost ever night. Sometimes he wanted to get off, sometimes not. When he did, I would either get him off or he would jump on top of me, as he was about to get off, and cum inside me. He would tell me that he wanted to feel him inside me and then proceeded to say how guilty he felt that he wasn’t able to get me off (in that, not even, 15 seconds). I felt like he had used me because he didn’t wanna clean up the mess. He had withdrawn from sex around that time and would jack himself off in the shower, so the only “sex” we ever had was when he jumped up and came in me. It was always a surprise and I never knew when it was or wasn’t going to happen. It happened so quickly that I didn’t know what to do or say. Besides, he was my husband.

He would want me to go down on him or do things I didn’t want to do. I did give in to the oral at times just to make him happy. Sometimes when I did that, he would push my head down farther on him during. He liked to pull my hair extremely hard and then tell me I liked it. I didn’t. It hurt a lot, but I just thought he did all this because he was enthusiastic. In the middle of kissing once, my husband tried to go down on me. I begged him not to, tried to push him away, told him I didn’t want him to. He was stronger, told me that it would be ok, that he wanted to. And he did. I didn’t know what else to do. He also told me that I was enjoying the sex, the more difficult the sex became. He said it was because I was tight, but because of the pain and the fact I was dry, that wasn’t the case. Anyways, I thought it was part of my wifely duties to do all this stuff.

One part that stumps me all the time was the anal sex and how much he hurt me and didn’t see it as a problem. There were a few times I jumped up off the bed in pain and in tears. I would ask him to go slow, ease it in, but he wouldn’t. He would say ok, and then next thing I know, he would thrust hard or at a bad angle. I don’t know what he did but I was crippled over in pain. He still wanted to continue, so he waited until I managed to lay back down in bed. He would try anally again, but if I was in too much pain, he would want to continue vaginally instead.

He also didn’t use lubrication most of the time which could have added to the pain. I was never aroused for sex anyways and he never eased into with any type of lubrication. If there was, it was me grabbing whatever I could find to help with the pain.

I was embarrassed because I never wanted to do it. He would play oops wrong hole all the time. So when he stopped having sex with me, I felt like I wasn’t doing enough. So I did something that hurt me. And didn’t vocalize my pain. Not like he could see my face anyways. Other times it hurt, but I didn’t jump up like I did. I would just pull away. Or tell him to stop. Or endure it. When he did stop, it was for a few seconds until he would do it again. But then again, he always told me that “if I started it, I had better finish it.” Oh, and Marc always said, it’s weird, never acted like he liked it. But then after a year of stopping it, he started up about it again.

Nearing our separation:

It all started because I wouldn’t have sex with him one night and I didn’t like him touching me. I was being triggered and having nightmares and all he cared about was having sex, since our daughter was with the grandparents. He was emotionally void and couldn’t even hold my hand but he could touch me in my private areas and try to have sex. When we were laying in bed, he kept advancing me and I tried to get him to hold and cuddle me instead. He kept on so I told him no. He threw a fit and went to sleep on the couch. Thirty minutes later, he came in and threw the biggest guilt trip telling me “let me know when I can touch my wife again” and how much I don’t want him anymore. In the past, when he did that kind of crap, I would give into sex and feel shitty about it afterwards. Mainly because after I spread my legs for him, and he did his thing, he would tell me how crappy of a person I was and how I changed and whatever fight we had would continue afterwards. But in my head, anything to “fix” our marriage or make him happy would allow me to pretend our marriage was fine as long as the sex was still there. But this time he threw the guilt trip, he walked out of the room and all I could think was I am glad I didn’t have sex with you. I guess he wanted me to chase after him like I did in the past. But I was done with the games.

I hope if anyone reading this can relate, please know you aren’t alone and it’s not your fault. None of this is consensual. No matter how much they tell you it is or was. It’s not a wifely duty. It’s not about inflicting pain on your spouse. It’s about love and respect and care. None of which I received. Rape is not love. Abuse is not love. It took a while to open up about this and realize that it was not right. I’m not perfect, it still scares me to death to share this. But his actions and control are not my fault. Luckily, I got out of it. And hopefully by sharing parts of my story, others will find that they are not alone.

Beyond the Outward Appearance


A picture I drew at 12am, in the dark, upset and couldn’t sleep.
June 2012, Kris Hannah

One year ago, I hit a devastating low that I never thought I would ever reach. No one knew the turmoil I was struggling with, as I hid it from everyone around me. Many knew some details but couldn’t handle or comprehend the depth of my struggles. I was in an abusive relationship, dealing with being raped in my past, and trying to take care of my little girl while holding down a job. We had just moved to Wyoming, where I was isolated from everyone and had zero support. When I hit that low, I had no clue where to turn or what to do.

After begging my husband to take me back down to Texas for a week, he finally drove me and I went into the hospital. I was super scared. I went to the Emergency Room at 5pm on Friday, was going through intake Saturday at 2am, where they searched everything and took whatever was prohibited, and by 5am, I was in my bed crying myself to sleep wondering if I had made the right decision. I didn’t wake up until Monday morning. I didn’t want to go to group, and only woke up long enough to speak to my doctor. Things felt hopeless.

I was only inpatient for 10 days but it felt so much longer. They had activities scheduled for most of the day. Group was 2-3 times a day, activity therapy, one-on-one therapy once a week, and we could choose to do family therapy if we wanted. Every morning, we filled out a sheet on how we were feeling and what we wanted to accomplish that day. And after lunch, we had journaling time for an hour.

The problem was we weren’t allowed pens, and the pencils they supplied were smaller than 3 inches. We were allowed to use markers, but they were worn out and run down or went missing. Even though journaling was encouraged, the circumstances weren’t ideal for anyone who truly wanted to journal.

The best moments inpatient were when I was laughing and coloring with the other patients. I realized that many were also depressed, just like me. When I went inpatient, my parents saw me as weak, but in actuality, the strongest thing I could have ever done was get the help I needed. This was the first time I was allowed to not pretend to be stronger than I felt. As I started reaching out for help and journaling, I finally felt a strength I hadn’t felt in such a long time.I flourished and finally found something enjoyable for myself. I took notes in every aspect of therapy, journaled like crazy, and even started drawing again. I went through FOUR composition books and my pages looked like rainbows. It felt great doing such a ‘childish’ thing.

I know many people don’t understand what would send someone into a mental hospital, but it is time to break down those walls. The people in my unit were not mentally insane. They were not crazy or psychos. They were seeking help in the best way possible. Just because their troubles were not physical, it doesn’t make them any less. Just imagine how many don’t get help and choose a more permanent solution. It saved my life and helped me get out of my abusive relationship.

When I left, I vowed that I would help future patients in the same way I was helped. I never realized how significant those markers and composition books were in my recovery, but they were. And I hope that by donating what I can, others can feel that also. Each month, I would love to be able to deliver washable markers, composition books, coloring books, and a set of resources for those inpatient.

If you have any suggestions or would like to help, please let me know by commenting or emailing me at krisahannah @ gmail.

The Defining Moment: Was I Really Raped?

Many times, when I speak about those first few moments that I realized I was raped, people are shocked by the reaction I received and the insincerity of someone not believing such a horrible act. I’m not speaking of the remainder of that night, I’m not even speaking of that week. It took me a while to realize what happened to me and to open my mouth to someone about it. In my heart of hearts, I knew what just happened, but when I finally spoke about what happened that night, I was looking for someone I could trust to work through those emotions. What I got? My best friend telling me that she didn’t want to think that was a possibility and turned me down from speaking of it further. I stayed silent for seven years because of that day.

So what if this happened to you? What would you want that trustworthy person to say back? There’s a campaign called Start by Believing, and I think that’s one of the core issues survivors face. No one wants to believe such an act can happen to someone they know. They don’t want to believe someone they know could commit such an act. Or, the most devastating one, they want to know what the victim did to make them get raped. This needs to change. Society needs to change.

I could only imagine what would have happened differently in my life if my best friend believed me. I know I cannot change the past, but what a difference it could have made if one persons reaction was in support of a survivor. I believe its like a chain reaction. If that first person takes the news well and supports you , then you could tell another and another and another until one day that silence that at one time bound you was finally loosened. The more chain links (i.e. positive reactions) you have, the freer you are from burdening this alone. This was never the victims fault, but once that first reaction couldn’t withstand the pressure it was placed under, the more likely the rest will crumble.

We cannot deny that rape happens. In fact, I’m sure many people know at least one person who has been sexually abuse. Some may not even know about their family or friend. It’s not rare for a victim to stay quiet. Sometimes the fear of not being believed is stronger than the fear of people knowing what happened to them. Not because they are ashamed necessarily, but because they don’t want to be blamed.

I, unfortunately, got the worst reaction I could have expected from my ex husband. Someone who was supposed to love and care for me. Yes, it was years after the fact, but if someone doesn’t deal with it when it happens, it will creep into their lives eventually. That’s how it was for me. It actually amazes me that an old friend could be infuriated by what happened to me, finding out years later, but my own family and spouse are more concerned about how it affected them instead.

Where does that come from? Why do people do that? What happened to sympathy and empathy for the person who endured a traumatizing experience? We all need to be cognizant of how we come off to people who are sharing a deep pain of theirs. Believe them, care for them, let them know the survivor didn’t deserve it, and that they are upset at the attacker and not the victim.