Last month marked three years of no-contact. In honor of Freedom Day, I decided to share my truth with my trusted Facebook friends. No longer did I want to hide part of my history that has so much influence on who I am and what I do. Here is what I wrote:
Not all of you know this, and some of you do. For 32 years I had lived my life as part of a family that considered themselves close-knit. That is how we presented ourselves to the world, and everyone believed us. In fact we even believed it ourselves. But behind closed doors there was toxicity, negativity and manipulation. It took me many years to realize that there was no love in that home. Once I realized that, I realized I deserved more, I deserved better. Three years ago I decided to leave all that toxicity behind, and cut ties with my family.
Since then I have met new friends, I have built myself a new family. I learned what a loving family is all about. I have healed and I have grown. I also received and took the opportunity to help set up and run a wonderful website for people who have similar experiences. People who have received the same emotional beating I did for most of my life.
I grabbed my freedom three years ago, and my partner and I have been celebrating today. We celebrated a life free from the pain, drama and toxicity.
Dear friends, if you did not know this about me, might there be other people in your circle who could be suffering in silence? In honor of my Freedom Day, I ask you this. Please help us spread the word. Give Swan Waters a like, share a post or two. You may save someone you care about.
Before you ask: yes, I did have a once over of my friends list, and deleted the people I did not trust with this. How much of a friend are they, if I don’t trust them with this?
To Those of You Who Share My Story:
Bullies and abusers have the power to destroy lives. Their victims have a greater power still, one to reclaim and rebuild. You too have that power. So why not join the website for some friendly support from people who know what you are going through, because they have been there themselves?
To the Rest of You, or rather: TO EVERYONE:
You never know who is suffering in silence. Please help us spread the word. I know that talking about domestic and child abuse is hard (boy do I know that!), but shining a light on the issue is the only thing that can help victims become survivors.