Best 572 quotes in «child abuse quotes» category

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    Grieve your childhood and mourn the loss of those who failed you.

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    Grieve out your betrayal, mourn over everything that went astray, this is an important beginning step towards your healing.

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    Having DID is, for many people, a very lonely thing. If this book reaches some people whose experiences resonate with mine and gives them a sense that they aren't alone, that there is hope, then I will have achieved one of my goals. A sad fact is that people with DID spend an average of almost seven years in the mental health system before being properly diagnosed and receiving the specific help they need. During that repeatedly misdiagnosed and incorrectly treated, simply because clinicians fail to recognize the symptoms. If this book provides practicing and future clinicians certain insight into DID, then I will have accomplished another goal. Clinicians, and all others whose lives are touched by DID, need to grasp the fundamentally illusive nature of memory, because memory, or the lack of it, is an integral component of this condition. Our minds are stock pots which are continuously fed ingredients from many cooks: parents, siblings, relatives, neighbors, teachers, schoolmates, strangers, acquaintances, radio, television, movies, and books. These are the fixings of learning and memory, which are stirred with a spoon that changes form over time as it is shaped by our experiences. In this incredibly amorphous neurological stew, it is impossible for all memories to be exact. But even as we accept the complex of impressionistic nature of memory, it is equally essential to recognize that people who experience persistent and intrusive memories that disrupt their sense of well-being and ability to function, have some real basis distress, regardless of the degree of clarity or feasibility of their recollections. We must understand that those who experience abuse as children, and particularly those who experience incest, almost invariably suffer from a profound sense of guilt and shame that is not meliorated merely by unearthing memories or focusing on the content of traumatic material. It is not enough to just remember. Nor is achieving a sense of wholeness and peace necessarily accomplished by either placing blame on others or by forgiving those we perceive as having wronged us. It is achieved through understanding, acceptance, and reinvention of the self.

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    He also knew the language of The Klingons, but the army had no use for it.

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    He recognized the same frenzy of wild abandon that each of those adults shared while beating their children, as if the important object lesson being taught justified their outsized zeal.

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    He loves me so he hurts me To try and make me good. It doesn't work. I'm just too bad And don't do what I should. My memory has so many different sections and, like all survivors, there are so many compartments with so many triggers. I'll remember a smell which reminds me of a man which reminds me of a place which reminds me of another man who I think was with a woman who had a certain smell — and I'm back to square one. This is the case for most survivors, I believe. When we try to put together our pasts, the triggers are many and varied, the memories are disjointed — and why wouldn't they be? We were children. Even someone with an idyllic childhood who is only trying to remember the lovely things which happened to them will scratch their head and wonder who gave them that doll and was it for Christmas or their third birthday? Did they have a party when they were four or five? When did they go on a plane for the first time? You see, even happy memories are hard to piece together — so imagine how hard it is to collate all of the trauma, to pull together all of the things I've been trying to push away for so many years.

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    He wrote to his father every day. His platoon called his dad a girlfriend.

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    How do we find words for describing levels of betrayal and emotional, physical, sexual and spiritual torture that fragment and destroy a child or cast and case traumatic shadows over the whole of adult life? We might, as a society, slowly find it possible to accept that one in four citizens are likely to have experience some form of emotional, psychical, sexual or spiritual abuse (McQueen, Itzin, Kennedy, Sinason, & Maxted, 2008), in itself a figure unimaginable and hidden twenty years ago. However, accepting the way a hurt and hurting parent or stranger re-enacts their disturbance with a vulnerable child or children remains far easier to digest than to consider the intellectually planned, scientific, methodical, procedures of organized child-abusing perpetrators-in other words, torture.

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    Hypercritical, Shaming Parents Hypercritical and shaming parents send the same message to their children as perfectionistic parents do - that they are never good enough. Parents often deliberately shame their children into minding them without realizing the disruptive impact shame can have on a child's sense of self. Statements such as "You should be ashamed of yourself" or "Shame on you" are obvious examples. Yet these types of overtly shaming statements are actually easier for the child to defend against than are more subtle forms of shaming, such as contempt, humiliation, and public shaming. There are many ways that parents shame their children. These include belittling, blaming, contempt, humiliation, and disabling expectations. -BELITTLING. Comments such as "You're too old to want to be held" or "You're just a cry-baby" are horribly humiliating to a child. When a parent makes a negative comparison between his or her child and another, such as "Why can't you act like Jenny? See how she sits quietly while her mother is talking," it is not only humiliating but teaches a child to always compare himself or herself with peers and find himself or herself deficient by comparison. -BLAMING. When a child makes a mistake, such as breaking a vase while rough-housing, he or she needs to take responsibility. But many parents go way beyond teaching a lesson by blaming and berating the child: "You stupid idiot! Do you think money grows on trees? I don't have money to buy new vases!" The only thing this accomplishes is shaming the child to such an extent that he or she cannot find a way to walk away from the situation with his or her head held high. -CONTEMPT. Expressions of disgust or contempt communicate absolute rejection. The look of contempt (often a sneer or a raised upper lip), especially from someone who is significant to a child, can make him or her feel disgusting or offensive. When I was a child, my mother had an extremely negative attitude toward me. Much of the time she either looked at me with the kind of expectant expression that said, "What are you up to now?" or with a look of disapproval or disgust over what I had already done. These looks were extremely shaming to me, causing me to feel that there was something terribly wrong with me. -HUMILIATION. There are many ways a parent can humiliate a child, such as making him or her wear clothes that have become dirty. But as Gershen Kaufman stated in his book Shame: The Power of Caring, "There is no more humiliating experience than to have another person who is clearly the stronger and more powerful take advantage of that power and give us a beating." I can personally attest to this. In addition to shaming me with her contemptuous looks, my mother often punished me by hitting me with the branch of a tree, and she often did this outside, in front of the neighbors. The humiliation I felt was like a deep wound to my soul. -DISABLING EXPECTATIONS. Parents who have an inordinate need to have their child excel at a particular activity or skill are likely to behave in ways that pressure the child to do more and more. According to Kaufman, when a child becomes aware of the real possibility of failing to meet parental expectations, he or she often experiences a binding self-consciousness. This self-consciousness - the painful watching of oneself - is very disabling. When something is expected of us in this way, attaining the goal is made harder, if not impossible. Yet another way that parents induce shame in their children is by communicating to them that they are a disappointment to them. Such messages as "I can't believe you could do such a thing" or "I am deeply disappointed in you" accompanied by a disapproving tone of voice and facial expression can crush a child's spirit.

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    I am free because I fought for freedom, I am a Survivor.

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    I believe we all heal differently, it is a process, and many like me are here to help you as you heal, as you recover.

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    I can just conceive of the pit of despair, the notion of being powerless and the essence of existence through it entirely

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    I can’t change the past abuse, but I can change the impact it has on me today!

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    I dived out of the office and I was gone … hitting these fields like a mad March hare. This wasn’t Born Free, it was RUN FREE!

    • child abuse quotes
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    If you ask me do I trust I say yes, just not like before

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    Imagine the infant who one day cries and gets fed, and the next day cries and goes hungry. One day smiles and is kissed and hugged. The next day smiles and is ignored. This is what psychologists called 'preoccupied or unresolved attachment' with the primary caregiver--usually the mother. There was love one minute and disdain the next. Affection that was given in abundance for no reason and then taken away without cause. The child has no ability to predict or influence the behavior of the parent. The narcissist loves a child only as an extension of herself at first, and then as a loyal subject. So she will tend to the child only when it makes her feel good.

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    In a brain scan, relational pain—that caused by isolation during punishment—can look the same as physical abuse. Is alone in the corner the best place for your child?

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    Incest, rape and abuse is rampant everywhere, even in our churches, but society is silent. It is a silent epidemic. One in three women will experience a sexual assault in her lifetime and one in six males, yet we don't speak of it, even in our churches!

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    In her book claiming that allegations of ritualistic abuse are mostly confabulations, La Fontaine’s (1998) comparison of social workers to ‘nazis’ shows the depth of feeling evident amongst many sceptics. However, this raises an important question: Why did academics and journalists feel so strongly about allegations of ritualistic abuse, to the point of pervasively misrepresenting the available evidence and treating women disclosing ritualistic abuse, and those workers who support them, with barely concealed contempt? It is of course true that there are fringe practitioners in the field of organised abuse, just as there are fringe practitioners in many other health-related fields. However, the contrast between the measured tone of the majority of therapists and social workers writing on ritualistic abuse, and the over-blown sensationalism of their critics, could not be starker. Indeed, Scott (2001) notes with irony that the writings of those who claimed that ‘satanic ritual abuse’ is a ‘moral panic’ had many of the features of a moral panic: scapegoating therapists, social workers and sexual abuse victims whilst warning of an impending social catastrophe brought on by an epidemic of false allegations of sexual abuse. It is perhaps unsurprising that social movements for people accused of sexual abuse would engage in such hyperbole, but why did this rhetoric find so many champions in academia and the media?

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    In order to survive our youth, many of us became sensitized to which conditions we had to play to, to receive attention. No wonder we mistook this attention for love. We thought love came in finite quantities—it had to be competed for among siblings, or it had to be paid for with exacting dues.

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    In projecting onto others their own moral sense, therapists sometimes make terrible errors. Child physical abusers are automatically labeled “impulsive," despite extensive evidence that they are not necessarily impulsive but more often make thinking errors that justify the assaults. Sexual and physical offenders who profess to be remorseful after they are caught are automatically assumed to be sincere. After all, the therapist would feel terrible if he or she did such a thing. It makes perfect sense that the offender would regret abusing a child. People routinely listen to their own moral sense and assume that others share it. Thus, those who are malevolent attack others as being malevolent, as engaging in dirty tricks, as being “in it for the money,“ and those who are well meaning assume others are too, and keep arguing logically, keep producing more studies, keep expecting an academic debate, all the time assuming that the issue at hand is the truth of the matter. Confessions of a Whistle-Blower: Lessons Learned Author: Anna C. Salter. Ethics & Behavior, Volume 8, Issue 2 June 1998 p122

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    In some instances, even when crisis intervention has been intensive and appropriate, the mother and daughter are already so deeply estranged at the time of disclosure that the bond between them seems irreparable. In this situation, no useful purpose is served by trying to separate the mother and father and keep the daughter at home. The daughter has already been emotionally expelled from her family; removing her to protective custody is simply the concrete expression of the family reality. These are the cases which many agencies call their “tragedies.” This report of a child protective worker illustrates a case where removing the child from the home was the only reasonable course of action: Division of Family and Children’s Services received an anonymous telephone call on Sept. 14 from a man who stated that he overheard Tracy W., age 8, of [address] tell his daughter of a forced oral-genital assault, allegedly perpetrated against this child by her mother’s boyfriend, one Raymond S. Two workers visited the W. home on Sept. 17. According to their report, Mrs. W. was heavily under the influence of alcohol at the time of the visit. Mrs. W. stated immediately that she was aware why the two workers wanted to see her, because Mr. S. had “hurt her little girl.” In the course of the interview, Mrs. W. acknowledged and described how Mr. S. had forced Tracy to have relations with him. Workers then interviewed Tracy and she verified what mother had stated. According to Mrs. W., Mr. S. admitted the sexual assault, claiming that he was drunk and not accountable for his actions. Mother then stated to workers that she banished Mr. S. from her home. I had my first contact with mother and child at their home on Sept. 20 and I subsequently saw this family once a week. Mother was usually intoxicated and drinking beer when I saw her. I met Mr. S. on my second visit. Mr. S. denied having had any sexual relations with Tracy. Mother explained that she had obtained a license and planned to marry Mr. S. On my third visit, Mrs. W. was again intoxicated and drinking despite my previous request that she not drink during my visit. Mother explained that Mr. S. had taken off to another state and she never wanted to see him again. On this visit mother demanded that Tracy tell me the details of her sexual involvement with Mr. S. On my fourth visit, Mr. S. and Mrs. S. were present. Mother explained that they had been married the previous Saturday. On my fifth visit, Mr. S. was not present. During our discussion, mother commented that “Bay was not the first one who had Tracy.” After exploring this statement with mother and Tracy, it became clear that Tracy had been sexually exploited in the same manner at age six by another of Mrs. S.'s previous boyfriends. On my sixth visit, Mrs. S. stated that she could accept Tracy’s being placed with another family as long as it did not appear to Tracy that it was her mother’s decision to give her up. Mother also commented, “I wish the fuck I never had her.” It appears that Mrs. S. has had a number of other children all of whom have lived with other relatives or were in foster care for part of their lives. Tracy herself lived with a paternal aunt from birth to age five.

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    In the 1890s, when Freud was in the dawn of his career, he was struck by how many of his female patients were revealing childhood incest victimization to him. Freud concluded that child sexual abuse was one of the major causes of emotional disturbances in adult women and wrote a brilliant and humane paper called “The Aetiology of Hysteria.” However, rather than receiving acclaim from his colleagues for his ground-breaking insights, Freud met with scorn. He was ridiculed for believing that men of excellent reputation (most of his patients came from upstanding homes) could be perpetrators of incest. Within a few years, Freud buckled under this heavy pressure and recanted his conclusions. In their place he proposed the “Oedipus complex,” which became the foundation of modern psychology. According to this theory any young girl actually desires sexual contact with her father, because she wants to compete with her mother to be the most special person in his life. Freud used this construct to conclude that the episodes of incestuous abuse his clients had revealed to him had never taken place; they were simply fantasies of events the women had wished for when they were children and that the women had come to believe were real. This construct started a hundred-year history in the mental health field of blaming victims for the abuse perpetrated on them and outright discrediting of women’s and children’s reports of mistreatment by men.

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    In the 1890s, when Freud was in the dawn of his career, he was struck by how many of his female patients were revealing childhood incest victimization to him. Freud concluded that child sexual abuse was one of the major causes of emotional disturbances in adult women and wrote a brilliant and humane paper called “The Aetiology of Hysteria.” However, rather than receiving acclaim from his colleagues for his ground-breaking insights, Freud met with scorn. He was ridiculed for believing that men of excellent reputation (most of his patients came from upstanding homes) could be perpetrators of incest. Within a few years, Freud buckled under this heavy pressure and recanted his conclusions. In their place he proposed the “Oedipus complex,” which became the foundation of modern psychology. According to this theory any young girl actually desires sexual contact with her father, because she wants to compete with her mother to be the most special person in his life. Freud used this construct to conclude that the episodes of incestuous abuse his clients had revealed to him had never taken place; they were simply fantasies of events the women had wished for when they were children and that the women had come to believe were real. This construct started a hundred-year history in the mental health field of blaming victims for the abuse perpetrated on them and outright discrediting of women’s and children’s reports of mistreatment by men. Once abuse was denied in this way, the stage was set for some psychologists to take the view that any violent or sexually exploitative behaviors that couldn’t be denied—because they were simply too obvious—should be considered mutually caused. Psychological literature is thus full of descriptions of young children who “seduce” adults into sexual encounters and of women whose “provocative” behavior causes men to become violent or sexually assaultive toward them. I wish I could say that these theories have long since lost their influence, but I can’t. A psychologist who is currently one of the most influential professionals nationally in the field of custody disputes writes that women provoke men’s violence by “resisting their control” or by “attempting to leave.” She promotes the Oedipus complex theory, including the claim that girls wish for sexual contact with their fathers. In her writing she makes the observation that young girls are often involved in “mutually seductive” relationships with their violent fathers, and it is on the basis of such “research” that some courts have set their protocols. The Freudian legacy thus remains strong.

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    interview from Ross E. Cheit about The Witch-Hunt Narrative: Politics, Psychology, and the Sexual Abuse of Children (Oxford University Press, February 2014). In the foreword to your book you mention a book titled Satan’s Silence was the catalyst for your research. Tell us about that. Cheit: Debbie Nathan and Michael Snedeker solidified the witch-hunt narrative in their 1995 book, Satan’s Silence: Ritual Abuse and the Making of a Modern American Witch Hunt, which included some of these cases. I was initially skeptical of the book’s argument for personal reasons. It seemed implausible to me that we had overreacted to child abuse because everything in my own personal history said we hadn’t. When I read the book closely, my skepticism increased. Satan’s Silence has been widely reviewed as meticulously researched. As someone with legal training, I looked for how many citations referred to the trial transcripts. The answer was almost none. Readers were also persuaded by long list of [presumably innocent] convicted sex offenders to whom they dedicated the book. If I’m dedicating a book to fifty-four people, all of whom I think have been falsely convicted, I’m going to mention every one of these cases somewhere in the book. Most weren’t mentioned at all beyond that dedication. The witch-hunt narrative is so sparsely documented that it’s shocking.

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    In the case of child abuse, the ‘false memory’ narrative provided a façade of scientific justification for the appealing belief that child abuse was not as serious as victimized children and adults would suggest.

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    In the past, child abuse has been a problem without a solution, with distressing case after case accumulating in public awareness without apparent end. At least the ‘false memory’ narrative offered a potential, if illusory and damaging, resolution to this intolerable situation, in the (re)suppression of victim complaints.

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    In the same way that the women's movement of the seventies and eighties brought rape and incest into public consciousness, we can do the same with the causes and reality of dissociation and multiplicity.

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    In the specific case of the use of the term “false memory” to describe errors in details in laboratory tasks (e.g., in word-learning tasks), the media and public are set up all too easily to interpret such research as relevant to “false memories” of abuse because the term is used in the public domain to refer to contested memories of abuse. Because the term “false memory” is inextricably tied in the public to a social movement that questions the veracity of memories for childhood sexual abuse, the use of the term in scientific research that evaluates memory errors for details (not whole events) must be evaluated in this light." From: What's in a Name for Memory Errors? Implications and Ethical Issues Arising From the Use of the Term “False Memory” for Errors in Memory for Details, Journal: Ethics & Behavior 14(3) pages 201-233, 2004

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    In this book we paint an unprecedented portrait of Britain’s first ‘false memory’ retraction and show that, like other ‘false memory’ cases which appeared in the public domain, memory itself was always a false trail – these women never forgot. We are not challenging people’s right to tell their own story and then to change it. But we do assert that the chance should be interpreted in the context that created it. Thousands of accounts of sexual and physical abuse in childhood cannot be explained by a pseudo-scientific ‘syndrome’. We have been shifted to the wrong debate, a debate about the malignancy of survivors and their allies, rather than those who have hurt them. That’s why the arguments have become so elusive. […]

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    Intimidated, old traumas triggered, and fearing for my safety, I did what I felt I needed to do.

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    I recall as a child when I got so hostile that I didn’t know whom to trust anymore, and then I would still act as if everything was alright. I would put that brilliant smile; which people love about me still right away. I am told to have the very beautiful smile, that smile became my signature throughout my life.

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    I remembered during puberty, through the anorexic mists of intermittent menstrual cycles, that man, my father, lifting Shirley's nightdress over her head and asking her in his mocking way to choose what colour condom she wanted. 'Red or yellow?' Which did she choose? I can't remember. Perhaps she alternated. Perhaps there were other colours. It didn't happen once. It happened again and again. I had no power to stop it. That man, my father, had some control over me. I was drugged by the black silence in that big house, the vile whiff of aftershave, the crushing torment of inevitability. My father fucked Shirley using red or yellow condoms and it was those condoms that brought it all to an end. It was my last realization of the day; any more would have been too much to contemplate. That time when my mother had found used condoms in bedroom, he had admitted, after a pointless burst my father's of denial, that he had been going to prostitutes. That was no doubt true but I can't imagine clients take used condoms away with them; prostitutes would surely get rid of the things. No. My father kept those used condoms as a prize. He was fucking his fourteen-year-old-daughter. He was proud of it. Rebecca welled up with tears. Poor thing, she kept saying. Poor thing.

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    I remember the pain I felt, and wonder why a man who was such an accomplished liar had to tell the truth that day.

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    I saw the bruises, the burns, the cuts— I knew which ones had been done to you by someone you thought you could trust. Someone you thought loved you. I knew which ones you gave yourself.

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    I spent most of my life believing l was crazy because all the crazy things I experienced in childhood were treated as nonexistent or normal. This belief colored every decision made, from something so basic as what to wear today, to the more esoteric boundaries of whether I should kill myself. I understood very well that killing myself under the wrong circumstances would establish my insanity forever. So I analyzed every word, every gesture, before committing myself. (Which probably accounts for why I am alive today.)

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    I spent many years trying to make up reasons about why I had the flashbacks, memories, continuous nightmares. When I finally decided to quit trying to hide from truth, I began to heal.

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    (...) istnieje pewna ciekawa teoria grzechu pierworodnego, o której chciałem ci opowiedzieć (...) – niektórzy teologowie uważają, że w przypadku Adama i Ewy nie chodziło o zjedzenie zakazanego jabłka, tylko o znęcanie się nad dzieckiem. - Znęcanie się nad dzieckiem? - Tak. Czy sądzisz, że inny grzech byłby w stanie przechodzić z pokolenia na pokolenie? Wykorzystywanie dzieci – znęcanie się i molestowanie seksualne – trwa przez wieki. Dzieci, nad którymi się znęcano, stają się okrutnymi mordercami. Zaczynają dręczyć swoje dzieci i tak dalej. Taki grzech może rozchodzić się niczym fale na wodzie do dwudziestego albo trzydziestego pokolenia. - Ciekawa teoria. - I ma też praktyczne konsekwencje. Ponieważ wszyscy pochodzimy od Adama i Ewy, więc jesteśmy ze sobą powiązani niczym rodzina. Jeśli kogoś krzywdzimy, krzywda nie zatrzymuje się na tej osobie, ale idzie dalej. Ból łatwo się rozprzestrzenia. (...) - To straszne! A gdzie jest koniec tego łańcucha? - (...), może nim być miłość. Dobre uczynki.

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    It doesn't matter if you come from money or you are poor: If your family has already made you feel that you are not worthy, you begin to believe it, and when someone comes along and tells you that you are beautiful/special/wonderful and showers you with attention and gifts, or offers you money when you desperately need it, you are vulnerable and ready to trust

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    It felt like I was living in two worlds. There was one world which was a daylight world and another dark world (though I'm not saying that everything bad happened in darkness because it didn't). In the daylight world, life had a veneer of normality - my mum was a bit violent, my dad was a bit distant, my big brother was in hospital somewhere, my little brother was always with Mum, and I had an uncle who was very loving and caring and did nice things for me. In this daylight world, I went to church and learned about Jesus. I was told about innocence and how He loves children. Then there was the other side, the dark world, which was almost a mirror image. But what I was getting taught there was all of the opposites. It was almost the reverse of Christianity. They would say that the Christian teachings were rubbish, and everything in the Kirk was right. they would sing a hymn - not like 'All Things Bright and Beautiful' but something about being strong. The hymns were quite Germanic, with harsh, aggressive chanting. They were always about power and strength and right. When they were singing I would be standing or sitting with whoever had taken me.

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    It is always a mistake to underestimate how long it takes for mankind to understand the traumas it has suffered, especially the self-inflicted ones.

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    It is dangerous to use our own ability to access non-traumatic memories as a standard against which we judge a trauma victim’s response.

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    It is important to refuse to be intimidated. That refusal must not be based simply on a calculation of the odds of succeeding. At times, in my case, multiple lawsuits and an ethics charge seemed overwhelming, and the fact that I knew my work to be accurate and responsible was only partial solace. l was well aware that court, like the National Football League, is an arena in which, on any given Sunday, anybody can win. The refusal to be intimidated must come, in the end, not from a sureness of succeeding but from a knowledge of the cost of scurrying for shelter through fake retractions and disowned truths. It is a question, in the end of self-respect. Who among us could, in good faith, ever face a survivor of childhood abuse again were we to run for cover when pressed ourselves? Children are not permitted that choice, and the adults who choose to work with them and with the survivors they become cannot afford to make it. It would be a choice to become. Through betrayal and deceit, that to which we object. Our alternative, then, is not to hide. Not to refuse to treat adult survivors, not to refuse to go to court in their defense, not to apologize and retract statements we know are true, but to cultivate endurance and tenacity as carefully as we read the research. Confessions of a Whistle-Blower: Lessons Learned Author: Anna C. Salter. Ethics & Behavior, Volume 8, Issue 2 June 1998

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    It is my personal opinion that all survivors can go from victim to victor and live more than a survivor.

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    It is not a single crime when a child is photographed while sexually assaulted (raped.) It is a life time crime that should have life time punishments attached to it. If the surviving child is, more often than not, going to suffer for life for the crime(s) committed against them, shouldn't the pedophiles suffer just as long? If it often takes decades for survivors to come to terms with exactly how much damage was caused to them, why are there time limits for prosecution?

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    It is often said that Vietnam was the first television war. By the same token, Cleveland was the first war over the protection of children to be fought not in the courts, but in the media. By the summer of 1987 Cleveland had become above all, a hot media story. The Daily Mail, for example, had seven reporters, plus its northern editor, based in Middlesbrough full time. Most other news papers and television news teams followed suit. What were all the reporters looking for? Not children at risk. Not abusing adults. Aggrieved parents were the mother lode sought by these prospecting journalists. Many of these parents were only too happy to tell — and in some cases, it would appear, sell— their stories. Those stories are truly extraordinary. In many cases they bore almost no relation to the facts. Parents were allowed - encouraged to portray themselves as the innocent victims of a runaway witch-hunt and these accounts were duly fed to the public. Nowhere in any of the reporting is there any sign of counterbalancing information from child protection workers or the organisations that employed them. Throughout the summer of 1987 newspapers ‘reported’ what they termed a national scandal of innocent families torn apart. The claims were repeated in Parliament and then recycled as established ‘facts’ by the media. The result was that the courts themselves began to be paralysed by the power of this juggernaut of press reporting — ‘journalism’ which created and painstakingly fed a public mood which brooked no other version of the story. (p21)

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    It is regarded as axiomatic that parents have more power then children. This is an inescapable biological fact; young children are completely dependent on their parents or other caring adults for survival.

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    I took my real strength to be able to face childhood sexual abuse.

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    It's better to look at a black and white world, rather than black and blue.

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    It’s highly discriminating to say which of the abuse is a more decisive than the other.