Monday, May 21, 2007
the worse kept secret
last week i had the pleasure of sitting down with my first girlfriend. although about 12 years had passed since we last saw each other, i really wanted to reconnect and let her know i made it... as well as see how she was doing.
after spending the first 1/2 hour catching up & swapping family pictures, we revisited the past and some of the things we could have done better. it wasn't too far into that conversation that i found out the horrible news she had been sexually molested from x to y years of her life.
having two kids of my own, my first emotion was anger. reflecting on some of her behaviors towards myself as she detailed the experience, my second feelings were embarrassment and heartbreak that i wasn't aware and didn't see it. in fact, after she was finished, i was unsure whether to apologise, hug her, cry, or lash out at the perpetrator (who thankfully has since taken his life).
on one hand i was sad to hear this news, on the other i was happy to see it had been dealt with and was now being managed by her. she seemed genuinely stronger by having come through the experience and was no longer afraid of keeping it "secret".
the ironic thing about a secret, is that it isn't really a secret. it usually finds it's way out in the forms of various isms and ic's (alcohol - workohol). further it is completely transparent to those who have dealt with their secrets. we all have stories, hence its safe to say a few of us have secrets and i am here to say, yes say - not suggest - imply - hint or skirt around, that your truth will set you free. read that again. and again. and again until you believe it (and stay tuned for a tool that will help you... help you) that we (all swim upstreamers have found usefull).
don't buy into keeping the "family secret in the family", don't buy into keeping some fucked up lunatic's secret "between you and he / her" and don't believe you are the only one with a secret and its your fault. it isn't. i've always maintained you can't let other peoples baggage become your baggage and although its easier said than done, its the only way you can prevent things like this from eating at your very soul.
if anyone is bringing any hurt, discomfort, annoyance, angst, or nuisance to your being YOU TELL SOMEONE. write us and tell us. write it into cyberspace and push send, what ever you do, get it from your inside... out and do not let it grow & feed.
secrets like this are the worse kept secrets we've got going. let it out. live YOUR life!