Would it matter to you who had violated her? Or how many times?
Would you listen to her tears, crying and heart?
Would you get lost in the details? Or simply let her talk, cry and share...consoling and encouraging where you could?
Would it matter to you her age?
Take a moment and put yourself in this very confining and uncomfortable position. And then take another moment to realize that if this has happened to your daughter, your friend...to anyone you know that takes the time and asks to share it with you...would you be doing them a disservice or injury if you didnt listen to them at all?
It is a humiliating experience to have someone impose their will on you physically. A lot of women do not share because of the shame they feel.
But should there be shame?
If they had been in a car accident, or gotten a bad prognosis from a doctor...well, there would be no shame in that.
How then is it then that shame is assigned to forcible rape?
Perhaps we have made strides in our culture over the last 200 or so years; but have we really in regards to how we as a society deal with rape?
A woman being raped screams internally for her attack to be over...she wants her attacker dead...she wants to die herself...she wants to vomit...she wants to beat something up in order to combat her sense of helplessness...
And for most the memory of the attack does not leave...it can shift...it can be put through the test of time and forgiveness...but rarely is it completely erradicated...
And perhaps what is most frustrating, foolish and useless is to have someone who has never been violated in that way try to tell us how we should feel...and how we should process the experience. It cannot be done.
But if women cannot even tell their own families, then how do we learn as a society to talk about it more freely?
Have someone completely take away your choice in the matter...and hurt you physically and emotionally in the process...and then advise me or others on how to feel, how to cope...how to deal.
Talking openly is shield of sorts...not that it cannot ever happen again...but that it doesn't have to keep you helpless...
So if your daughter ever comes to you and tries to share about such an experience...listen...one time or a hundred times...because if her feelings are not validated by someone she trusts, it is very much like being raped all over again...
Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but of playing a poor hand, well ~
Robert Louis Stevenson
Let me know how you are doing.
The single greatest influence in her life was the remarkable time spent with her paternal grandmother; it was under this influence that she thrived. Her grandmother introduced her to not only fine Literature, but also the Arts and the Opera. And it was beloved grandmother who told her that if she wanted to be a great writer she must first learn to be an avid reader.
Early adult life would be peppered with indecision, failings, and the haunting of things not learned in childhood. But as is the case with most sincere artist, out of the angst of life came a great capacity for creativity.
Shelby considers her writing a gift...a joy, a tremendous responsibility, and something that helps to define her life.
She lives in very picturesque Central Oregon with her two children.