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.