This post will be heavy. Avoid it if you do not like the deep end.
Giant realization today. A tough one. Don’t like it- it needs to be said. Silence is killing America. Inhibition.. the holding back of communication… is the dagger that is slowly bleeding out our world.
In a room of 20 women, ask for the show of hands of anyone who has been sexually molested, accosted or harassed and I guarantee you most of the hands will go up. This 1 out of every 3 women statistic is incorrect.
I was raised by a single father from the age of 8. We lived in a high rise apartment building, Capitol Towers, in downtown Sacramento. My dad traveled a lot and I was often alone.Â Due to a very intense custody battle (single men didn’t get daughters if there was a non drug addicted mother in the 70’s) and thus I had to keep quiet about being alone.
I was lucky, I thought. There was a doorman, Tim, who really stepped in and took care of me. Until one day. He didn’t. It turned out all of his nice was just to mask the inner pedophile.Â I would try to avoid him after that- afraid of things escalating and getting worse. I didn’t tell anyone. I was afraid.Â I knew if I told my dad my dad would kill him.Â I needed my dad.Â I said nothing.
Then one day I watched him grab another little girl. He pushed her into the elevator to the basement. I saw the look on her face and took the other elevator downstairs. I pushed him. Grabbed her arm and pushed her in the elevator. I screamed at him that I was going to tell my dad if I ever saw him do anything like that again. I was so ANGRY. He blubbered.. begged.Â He cried.Â He was my best friend – why would i do that to him.Â He was… (elevators closed)
I was always so proud of myself for that moment.Â That moment when I helped someone else so they didn’t suffer what I suffered. Â It turns out the little girl was a year older than me. She was so thankful.Â We agreed to watch Tim from then on to make sure he didn’t hurt anyone.
It wasn’t until today that I realized something. Awful.
Tim the doorman was free to continue. My silence meant he continued what he was doing when I wasn’t around. I didn’t save anyone.Â Being silent gave him license to continue.
I recently read a story about a woman being thrown into a fire at a festival event. The story reads that the event chose to pay the woman for her silence and basically covered up the situation. This means the man who did it is free to continue.Â The same festival that has 100’s of rapes each year and choose to keep it quiet instead of asking the “community” to step in an help.
I think back to all the times I kept my mouth shut.Â How silence is a go ahead in our society.
Recently, I started noticing that parents around me are scolding their children for being tattle tales “Don’t tell on your friends” is what I keep hearing.Â It seems we are opening the door for creeps to convince our kids not to tell. Â A creep only need convince a child his is their friend to gain secret access.
When did telling get to be such a bad thing?Â Did Bullies hire a PR agency to rename disclosure “tattle tale” and make it a pejorative?Â I tell my son “Tell on everyone to me – I want to know.”Â When he tells on one of his friends at the preschool, I just ask him “Thank you for telling me.Â What are you wanting me to do?Â Do you want me to talk with them or are you just wanting me to know.”Â Most of the time he elects the latter and just moves on.
I have had poor workmanship on my house, my car and my business.Â I have elected not to say anything to others as times are hard.Â Why is the truth so scary to me – and to most humans I see?
Silence is easier.Â It keeps us under the radar and out of conflict. Â Free to continue.Â Â America is in a mess perhaps more due to our silence than our greed.
I wrote this post months ago and due to potential clients who might happen to read my blog I never posted it.
I suppose today I found my inner megaphone.Â I’m weirded out a little and not sorry.Â 🙂