Breaking Through the Fear of Speaking About Child Abuse by Kylie Devi

Facebook91k
Twitter4.6k
Youtube157
LinkedIn26

I am pleased to welcome Kylie Devi back to Emerging from Broken. In January of 2012, Kylie wrote a guest post about having been sexually abused as a child and how much trouble she had getting professional help dealing with it. There were some unforeseen results due to her sharing this information however and this new post is about her abusers confronting her about that blog post and her reaction to that confrontation; how it froze her and how she got through it. It will be helpful for you to get the whole picture by reading her original blog post first. Please help me welcome Kylie back! ~ Darlene

 

stop the silence about child abuse
Kylie Devi

Breaking Through the Fear of Speaking About Child Abuse by Kylie Devi

In January of this year, I wrote a blog post sharing my experience with the “get better industry.” I shared how I felt that traditional psychology and social work failed me when I really needed it. And how I pulled myself out of the trenches of the horrors of sexual, emotional, and physical abuse as well as a ten year battle with drug addiction.

The belief I shared is that any industry designed to help me “get better” is only going to thrive when I don’t get better. An example of this is that the medical industry doesn’t thrive when nobody is sick, seeing doctors, or buying pharmaceuticals. Therefore, they are invested in people being sick. Make sense?

My main purpose for sharing this blog post was to reach out and say, hey, we all have our own unique path to healing… and it’s really awesome when we can share with each other too. For me, both of these are implicit – we have to do the work ourselves, but it is so powerful when we can participate in communities full of people who are also “doing the work.”

I do believe it was received that way by many people who read it, but there were some other people who weren’t too excited about what I had to say.

In February, I got a phone call from my main abuser saying: “I read your little blog post, what are you doing? Trying to get attention? Who abused you, and why am I hearing about it in this way?”

(I would like to say that “your little blog post” was kind of comedic to me, since this is a highly trafficked website that has helped thousands of people.)

And then 3 more phone calls from my other main abuser.

Phone Call 1: “Kylie, we got a phone call today about your blog post. Someone in the family has read it and we really need to know what is happening and what is going on here. It’s really obvious that you are accusing someone in the family of sexually abusing you and since we know that isn’t true we just want to find out what is going on with you.”

Phone Call 2: “Kylie, one of your aunts has read the blog post and she can’t sleep. She hasn’t been able to sleep in 3 nights. She is so upset.”

Phone Call 3: “Kylie, one of your uncles has read the blog post and now he is wanting to beat up the person you accused in your article.”

Kylie: “I am really sorry for all the drama this is causing for you. I genuinely was trying to help people. I do whatever I can to help people heal from what I have overcome and been through. I had no idea it would cause anyone else any stress or pain. I was very conscientious not to point any specific fingers, so I’m not sure why people are making these assumptions about who abused me.”

What?!?!

Yes, I really said this.

And here are the truths that I derived from this series of phone calls that catalyzed a frozen, scared 5 year old girl paralysis within me.

So much that I actually stopped working on a book on overcoming sexual trauma that I have been working on for over 10 years. I stopped commenting on EFB and OSA Facebook pages and sites. I stopped offering the recovery-based courses that women were participating in with life-changing results.

In short, I stopped speaking my truth.

I silenced myself.

Truth #1: A part of me was still terrified of my abusers.

Truth #2: I was disconnecting from my own truth to protect them, STILL.

Truth #3: I felt like I had done something wrong by speaking my truth in a public forum.

And it was another survivor’s writing that woke me up to this.

On July 8th Christina Enevoldson of Overcoming Sexual Abuse published the following post

The Truth About My Abusers Threats

What really moved me about this post was that Christina identified the part of her that was still afraid, the child or voice inside that had been groomed to respond with fear… but that in identifying that voice inside, she also saw the reality of her adulthood, of her responsibility in her own life, about her desire to speak the truth, and how no one can stop that. She was bold and brave in the face of fear and threats. She had taken back her power from these people. Or at least, this is how I interpreted what she wrote.

I literally stopped in my tracks when I read that post. 

Once I realized what I was doing, I decided that it was time to reassess my recovery process and get a little extra support, and so I did that. I started posting much more heavily on all the recovery forums online because I needed that. I started working with Darlene doing some coaching to work on the very specific blocks I was experiencing. This helped me to see EXACTLY where I was at, so I could make recovery and life affirming choices from a space of self-love and self-care rather than from reactivity to the genuine shock I felt when I realized what I was doing to myself.

And in that process I realized I had done so much work, and in doing that work it was really time to confront the abusers and stop pretending like that they have some kind of mystical power over my life. I didn’t want to be in the grips of fear anymore.

So I did.

I do not believe this is a necessary step for everyone’s healing, and I would definitely say if you are going to do something like this have A LOT of support.

What I learned about myself in this process:

  • ·         I do not exist for anyone else’s pleasure, I am not another’s property.
  • ·         I have the right to speak my truth, at any time, in any situation. There is no time or place where it is not okay, or not permissible, for me to speak what is true for me, as I had been groomed to believe.
  • ·         My levels of self-love and self-care are not influenced by what others think of me. I love myself and I will provide care and protection to myself. The child in me needed that from another, but I am capable of providing what I need, even if that need means needing something from somebody else. I am interdependent and dependable.
  • ·         Other people’s emotions are not mine to take care of. I am not responsible for my abusers’ horrible feelings and beliefs about themselves. I did NOT do that to them. It was not my fault.
  • ·         I am not internally flawed. I have shortcomings, and when I become aware of these shortcomings, I can transform them into a higher level of relating with myself and the world. 

I realized that in beginning to speak about my abuse in an even more public way than ever before, I was making major strides in my own recovery. And when the abusers saw that happening, part of their abuser identity began to crumble.

“We can’t control her anymore! Who are we, then?”

I don’t know who they are with or without abusing me, and it doesn’t matter. I know that my identity no longer exists inside of the abuse box that they created, the one I had no other choice but to live in as a child.

Just like the medical industry literally fuels itself with disease, the abusive system also requires a certain fuel. This mostly consists of me giving my power away, of me believing limiting thoughts about who I am…

Things like “I am not loveable,” “I am powerless,” “I have no voice,” “My voice is not important,” “I have no right to speak,” “Nobody believes me anyways,” “I deserved it…” these beliefs fuel the system.

But the worst one for me was the one I discovered in this process, that Christina also shared overcoming….

“I’m going to get in trouble if I tell.”

What does trouble look like now that I am a 33 year-old woman?

It could look like legal battles. It could look like some kind of harm done to me. I realize that someone who would harm a child is not above retaliation.

But I am not a child anymore. I have resources. I have the ability to keep myself safe. And I for one, am not willing to be silenced again. My life story is a powerful stand that anyone can heal from trauma and addiction and live a meaningful, enriching life contributing value to the lives of others.

No one can stop me from being that story. No one can stop me from telling you that story.

I’m not shutting up any time soon.

Kylie Devi

Please share your thoughts, reactions, feelings and comments with Kylie and the EFB community.

Bio: Kylie Devi is a writer, healing artist and internet marketer who is passionate about mental, emotional, political and spiritual freedom. You can connect with her at www.facebook.com/kyliedevi if you care about any of the aforementioned things.

Related Posts ~dysfunctional family law and family belief system

~ sexual harassment and freezing in fear

85 response to "Breaking Through the Fear of Speaking About Child Abuse by Kylie Devi"

  1. By: Me too Posted: 9th May

    Where is the forum list of topics? Every time I go to post something it says page not found?

  2. By: DXS Posted: 12th October

    Amber, I’m stuck in “freeze” too. Trying to deal with that.

  3. By: Amber Posted: 12th October

    I find myself in the freeze box often. I freeze and have trouble responding when someone insults me. I freeze when someone raises their voice or acts irrational. I freeze when someone says something that shocks me. I know where the fear comes from. It’s the scared little girl who is afraid of getting hit, or put down, and worst of all, rejected if she doesn’t do what the other person wants.

    I know I am not a child anymore. I know no one is going to hit me. But I still find myself freezing up in certain situations as described above. Why am I still reacting this way and how do I break out of the box? Awareness of why I froze as a child doesn’t seem to be enough. So I wonder, where am I stuck?

  4. By: sandra Posted: 11th October

    “ BUT I AM NOT A CHILD ANYMORE”

    I now know I WILL success in whatever path I pursue

  5. By: Jean Posted: 10th October

    I have tried a couple of times to take my abusers thru police system …… it caused me more harm because their power is too extended ….. but for me what speaks volumes is that from such a powerful position they have never attempted to accuse me of slander or libel ….. maybe it’s just me but if someone apparently told a ‘pack of lies’ about me i’d want to see them brought to justice to clear my name?

  6. By: penny Posted: 10th October

    kylie- i have to tell you—-every time i even see the phone # of my abusers come up on my phone–im 50 years old—i get sick and start shaking–i go back to the feelings i had as a child growing up– it is hard to move on and be strong–without support from people like you and darlene!you give me strenght to do what i need to do to heal–every time you talk about a way you are moving forward you are giving others faith that they can do the same thing—you are never alone!!! i feel like—finally someone qwho understands how i feel -i dont feel alone anymore

    thank you

  7. By: Kylie Posted: 18th March

    Hi Thom,

    Good for you for making the decision to speak the abuse outloud!
    I want to encourage you not to wait until you are “fearless” to write.
    I am nowhere near fearless. I experienced fear when I published this writing.
    Breaking through the fear is a continual process that has many levels.
    You deserve to be heard.

    Much Love,

    Kylie

  8. By: Thom Schwarz Posted: 18th March

    Thank you, all, for your courage, insight, understanding, compassion, and eloquence.
    I was abused by an Irish Christian Brother in the ’60s during high school. It wasn’t until 2008 that I allowed myself to consider it, to speak it aloud. And to do something with it. What that “something” is remains to be seen. It will probably take the form of writing, as that is what I do. I am a writer, and a hospice nurse. But writing it means that I will be fearless, and Lord knows, I am not that –yet.
    Again, thank you all.
    Thom

  9. By: Lilysann Posted: 22nd February

    A little bit of a rambling comment:

    In my 20’s & 30’s I thought sharing my story would help others. Incest, physical violence and emotional abuse are abhorrent and difficult topics for most to ‘listen’ to, but if one person was helped because I told my story, I was doing ‘my job’. I learned that overall responses to this type of story range from disgust to rage, with poor reactions coming from relatives who I thought would support me (an my siblings). Over time, I began to believe that nothing good could come of this type of storytelling because all it did was conjure bad emotions with no answers for myself and other people (omitting lots here). I learned to use denial to cloak myself in ‘normal’ so I could be like everyone else and therefore be liked and acceptable to others. Everyone has problems, it’s all relative, right? Wrong. I learned that denial cannot be sustained for long periods of time, there is an eventual breakdown, sometimes small sometimes epic.

    FYI: I did ‘my job’ initially in my 20′ by telling my story to a county prosecutor who figured we had a case through my sister’s statute of limitations. I waffle about telling the story as a result of that journey because, although he – my father – was prosecuted, the results weren’t as great as I imagined. Key word: Imagined. I have imagined restoration and forgiveness and wholeness for me and my family. That of course did not happen – not at all. Altruism and Idealism are amazing if you can live in those realms permanently. Unfortunately, I can’t. There are triggers. As much as I want to believe that as time creates distance between me & them and that I shouldn’t be affected, I am still subconsiously responding to tighty whities, feel uncomfortable sleeping in a night gown or wearing a robe, (or… it goes on and on). As I get older, the smallest of them cause me to feel trauma worse than the actual abuse. I know what I need therapy-wise and must take the steps (again -have done this before) to heal. Kylie, I relate to piecing together your own network of help and thank you for sharing because there are many like me who get discouraged by the disconnect with so many therapists – it’s exhausting to find the right one. When I started my journey in the late 80’s there was little out there to really help. Since then, there are so many improvements in therapy for sexual abuse survivors that it seems like we should be able to pick a therapist and go for it. Each survivor’s story is unique and the way one person heals, is different for another, etc.. I just hope for all of our hearts, minds and souls that we find Kylie’s ‘living on purpose’ to be a journey filled with more wholeness than misery.

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 23rd February

      Hi Lilysann
      Welcome to Emerging from Broken.
      Time is not what created distance from my triggers; it was realizing that lies attached to those triggers and to the events about the abuse in my life, that helped me to realize that none of that stuff was about me. The messages that I got from the trauma were all lies that needed to be overturned. Triggers for me became like clues that could lead me out of the darkness. I have written a lot in this site about all of this.
      Thanks for sharing,
      Hugs, Darlene

  10. By: Kylie Posted: 31st January

    Hi TJ!

    Thanks for writing and sharing yourself here.

    I think for me it’s really an ongoing process. Recently I was invited to do another guest blog and I was really excited about it, and I wrote it… and then I felt frozen because I got this trigger of “I’m being really disloyal to my family.” I was raised in an Italian NY household, where loyalty and respect are the #1 values. Obedience is #3 and love is #4. And I realize, those aren’t MY values. Definitely not obedience, and well, the other 3, yes, but not in that order.

    I struggle between what I know is my true work in the world, to share myself openly to assist myself and others is revealing and healing from the sweeping violence that shames millions, if not billions into silence – and the desire to just have a calm, peaceful life without wondering if people will track down my work and what they will think about it. On different days I feel differently about it.

    But what I do know for sure is that I will not be silenced out of fear any more. What’s true for me is what’s true for me, and in the midst of threats, denial and manipulation, that truth can’t be altered in my head anymore. I know what it is. And I will share it when I want to, in the ways that I CHOOSE TO. And that’s a big difference.

    Be kind to yourself!

    Kylie

  11. By: TJ Posted: 31st January

    This was inspiring to me. I started a blog a few years ago. Writing has been my “voice,” my way of expressing myself, and may way of working things out. I wrote about the emotional abuse I had suffered not only because I needed to be able to voice it, but also because I had felt alone in struggling with it and I wanted to encourage others that they were not alone.

    Some of my family found my blog, and they were so angry! One sister, who recognizes that there was emotional abuse in our family but is so hungry for our Mom’s love that she ends up defending her, told me I wasn’t caring, and I shouldn’t write about my family because, after all, they are family. She “suggested” what I should write about and what I should not write about. She asked “How would you feel if any of us wrote about you on the Internet?” I replied that if they felt a need to write about me they were free to do so, but I wouldn’t be searching out their blogs or reading them.

    I tried to keep writing, but I felt a sense of disloyalty to my family and wondered if I was terrible for writing about my experiences. I couldn’t keep writing a blog knowing they were reading so I deleted it. Needing to write, I started a new blog, but my family found that one too, so I deleted it and started a new one. I wrote for awhile, but I was discouraged, and felt vulnerable, and just didn’t have the strength to keep going. I didn’t know if what I did mattered or if I was wrong to write about my experiences so publicly. I also needed to gain a sense of safety in my life.

    On a positive note, a couple of years ago, I found myself standing up to the manipulative abusers in life and walking away from them. That was a big step.

    I respect you for having the strength to get back into writing, Kylie, and not being silenced.

  12. By: catherine todd Posted: 12th November

    Thank you Kylie..- glad you liked the line “I was loud then and I’m about to get louder.” That has stayed with me all day. Thank you for the encouragement too. It´s easy to say this but harder to do, but I am determined. One way or another, we will all find our way home.

    And “A lie left unchallenged becomes the truth.” So that is where my battle lies.

    My computer is being repaired so I won´t be writing much for awhile, but will keep up reading whenever I can. Gracias amiga!

  13. By: kylie Posted: 12th November

    And yes, you can totally get an “Amen!!!”

  14. By: kylie Posted: 12th November

    Hi Catherine,

    Great to have you join the discussion!

    I love how you said: “I was loud then and I am about to get louder now.
    God give me grace and strength. I need you now.”

    I appreciate and admire your courage and bravery!

    Love,

    Kylie

  15. By: Catherine Todd Posted: 9th November

    Transactional Analysis didn’t work for me either, and added to the feeling ‘WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? ALL THOSE BAD THINGS MUST BE TRUE!” Because just repeating things didn’t change anything, so this failure PROVED it all “must be true.” What a relief to read that I’m not crazy after all.

    As Darlene wrote in comment #63, “My brain just didn’t believe me. I have written a lot in this blog about re-wiring the belief system through looking at the damage and the messages that I believed which caused me to believe that I was not beautiful or worthy in the first place and once I saw where the lies came from and had their roots, I was able to correct them.”

    Then I was able to believe those affirmations and I didn’t have to keep repeating them because finding out why I believed them made it easier to see the lies they were. Prior to that it was as though my mind was laughing at me and calling me a liar.”

    Amen.

    I just had to recopy it all here. Amen. Amen. Amen. Can I get an Amen?

  16. By: Catherine Todd Posted: 9th November

    Thank you all so much for this discussion. I can’t believe it. As I have said before, I was the only one out of eight children to speak out, and I am sure I was not the only one to be abused. But I was the only who would not shut up. I was loud then and I am about to get louder now.

    God give me grace and strength. I need you now.

  17. By: Terri Antonovich Posted: 17th October

    Hi Darlene and group,
    I wanted to share what worked for me and why, it may help someone else.
    If you google transactional analysis it will give you info on the parent, adult and child state we operate from . So, with that in mind, the negative tapes that play in our heads are invariably critical parent, and only our adult state can refute them. There are such things as mirror neurons , like when we hold a baby and mimic back to them their expressions etc … So, basically, we look into a mirror and refute the tape messages by saying the truth about us. Eg ..I am beautiful, I am worthy , whatever is the opposite to the internal tape …it actually, miraculously works and we can move on… It’s a hippothalmus part of the brain being activated ..hope this helps, and it’s amazing how many shiny surfaces are in the supermarket lol
    Blessings Terri

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 18th October

      Hi Terri
      Welcome to emerging from broken!
      I am really glad that this worked for you. I tried this for years (transactional analysis has been around for a very long time) but it didn’t work for me. My brian just didn’t believe me. I have written a lot in this blog about re-wireing the belief system through looking at the damage and the messages that I believed which casued me to believe that I was not beautiful or worthy in the first place and once I saw where the lies came from and had their roots, I was able to correct them. Then I was able to believe those affirmations and I didn’t have to keep repeating them because finding out why I believed them made it easier to see the lies they were. Prior to that it was as though my mind was laughing at me and calling me a liar.
      Thanks for sharing!
      Hugs, Darlene
      (author of emerging from broken)

      • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 21st October

        Hi Everyone
        I have published a new post about passive abuse and how my mothers definition of LAZY got stuck in my belief system even though she never called me lazy! In this post I highlight a new way to look at the belief system and how it forms. Seeing this stuff is a big part of how I was set free from those false beliefs!
        Here is the link! “Connecting the dots about passive abuse and the truth about lazy”
        Hugs, Darlene

  18. By: kylie Posted: 14th October

    Thank you Katie for being here. You have what it takes to be a fully empowered woman. 🙂
    Much Love,

    Kylie

  19. By: Katie Posted: 14th October

    All i can say is wow, I have been struggling to get some power back in my life for along time and i believe this has helped unravel some lies in my head. I feel stronger since reading ur post thank you for sharing the truth.

  20. By: kylie Posted: 14th October

    Thanks Darlene! It’s always an enriching and supportive experience to share myself with your readers… Everyone else – thank you so much for taking the time to read and share this! If you connected to this post because you know me personally and didn’t know Emerging From Broken already, I sincerely encourage you to take some time to read the other posts and share your thoughts… the wisdom you will find here is off the charts!!!

  21. By: Viga Boland Posted: 12th October

    Chris Stewart:

    Thanks for visiting my blog site. The blogroll is a widget installed on my blog that allows me to list blogs I follow. It’s good for sending traffic from my blog to another’s blog. Not sure how you do it on WordPress. My blog is hosted by Blogger.

    Chris as a victim/survivor of abuse, if you are on Facebook, I hope you’ll check out my page and group too. You’re welcome to join us. links above.

    Best

    Viga

  22. By: Chris Stewart Posted: 12th October

    Thanks Viga, I have visited your site and responded by e mail. Not clued up enough yet to understand what blogroll is!
    Thanks Kylie, You have started me on another part of my long journey. Its comforting to know healing people are travelling with me.
    Chris Stewart

  23. By: kylie Posted: 12th October

    Chris,

    That’s great! I look forward to hearing your healing adventures…

    Much Love,

    Kylie

  24. By: Viga Boland Posted: 12th October

    Chris Stewart:

    amazing how such things trigger and inspire us to do the same. That’s how my blog came to life after I’d read about Patricia A. McKnight who wrote “My Justice” blew me away with her sad story of incest and sexual abuse.

    Good luck with your blog. I’ll be reading it. I may even send folks over from my Facebook group and page to read some of your posts if I think they would be useful to them. If you ever get into cross-linking with other blogs, keep me in mind. I have a blogroll on my home page where I promote related blogs. Take at look at http://vigaland.blogspot.ca

    Viga Boland

  25. By: Chris Stewart Posted: 12th October

    Kylie,

    Not only has your site inspired me to reply to you……………I have today compiled my own web site that I hope can help and heal others.
    https://abirdinacage.wordpress.com/

    You have taught me how to fish and now I can feed myself and others for life.

    Many many thanks

    Chris Stewart

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.