Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Speaking Out

I get it.  Some people are horrified by social media and how our lives are put out there for judgement. I get that when someone is too personal, it can make others feel uncomfortable or upset or feel it is too close to home.

I don't know about you, but I am a huge Brene Brown fan.  I have read a few of her books and each time I do I worry less about what others think and worry more about who I can help with my story, my truth.

Some still don't like how open I am.

I am totally fine with this.

I know who I've been able to help and I know there will be others.

Our stories shouldn't be hidden or lost, it is through others we find our strength.

I have, however, come to find that life isn't about getting everyone to love you or understand you.  In fact, when you speak your truth it is easy to make enemies.  But in that process I have found life is about finding those true people in your circle who care, those who love you for your truth, who love you within your brokenness and pain.

In my church on Sunday we discussed the topic of helping each other.  While taking dinners, helping with cleaning, or child care are all AMAZING parts of this service, I have also found that allowing others to see that they are not alone in some of live's most difficult times, has been not only a blessing for them but for me as well.  And while I share my story, I have also found strength and help as they share with me their story and how they are working through it.

I do not, in any way, share my truths for you to cry over me or to feel like I am weak or self-absorbed, I share because honestly, I have felt I needed to share.

SO as I talk about this next subject, please know, that while I am truly putting it all out there, it is only to empower, to help, to show that hiding our pain isn't what God intends us to do.  Even our Savior asked for his friends, the apostles, to please stay awake while He went into the Garden of Gethsemane, he wanted his friends to be there for him and to protect him while he suffered for their very sins.

And yet, they slept and had NO idea what their friend, their Savior, their Redeemer had done.

He needed his friends and they were not there for him.

We are all in this journey together, hopefully doing our best to be the best moms, dads, brothers, sisters, daughters, sons, and children of God that we can.

But sometimes we get hurt.  Sometimes others hurt us and we need more support, we need to speak up and get help from family/friends and professionals.

I want to share something very personal; in light of all those who are now speaking up about how common it is to be sexually assaulted or humiliated, I know their pain.  I have held it in for years.  I only told my husband this past month and he was the first person I spoke to about it.  I felt weak, I felt stupid, I felt humiliated, and so I never said a word.

I want to share this as I hope to give a voice to what is too common in our world.  I want to share my story to show that it isn't those moments of hurt in our lives that define us, but they can make us grow and stand up for what is right and true!

Sometimes saying something out loud makes all the difference in the world!

When we were going through our infertility journey, we met with a doctor, who knew how broken I was, who knew how desperate I was to be a mom, and yet he used that to hurt me.  At the time I knew what he was doing was wrong, even though he said it was part of the process of IVF.  He hurt me over and over again, and I never said a word.  I trusted him.  I wanted a baby so badly, I didn't know how to speak up and so he kept hurting others, until finally other women finally spoke up...and yet, I still stayed silent.  Maybe if I would have spoke up others wouldn't have been hurt!

I could have stopped him from sexually abusing others.

But I can't dwell on that now.

In the end, he lost his license.  I tried to tell myself, he didn't hurt me, even when my husband questioned me, I lied.  I couldn't be one of those women who allowed that to happen.  I wasn't weak, I wasn't stupid.

I was wrong.  I was wrong about a lot of things, as I realized it has nothing to do with weakness or stupidity.  It has to do with self worth.  I didn't feel worthy to share my story, I didn't feel worthy to NOT be taken advantage of. I didn't feel worthy of my truth and that somehow it was all my fault for letting it happen.  There was a dark cloud that hung over me for years.

But now that I am talking about it, I can see more clearly that it had nothing to do with me...it was not, in any way my fault.  I trusted him and he took advantage of my pain.

I hope that this story will only help others see that their worth in God's eyes is still pure and beautiful after something like this happens and that it is NEVER their fault.

Again, I hope that this is all taken in a place of love and understanding.  I don't share my truths for your tears, I share them to educate, to help, to show that we, none of us, are alone on this journey.

I love this quote:

"Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

*Update: I found out that only after 1 year in jail and 2 years of probation this doctor still practices in Provo, helping people through IVF.  He is under very strict rules to help his clients be safe under his care.  If you have any questions you can ask me in the comment section and I will be happy to help you.

Lots of love to all of you.

Niki

8 comments:

  1. Whoa. We need to talk. This is heavy stuff, Niki! I love you. I love your vulnerability and honesty. You amaze me!

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  2. My love for you grows with each new truth I learn about you. I so look forward to the day when we live near you.

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    1. Me too, you are such a great friend!

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  3. One in 4 women are sexually assaulted, I am one. We are everywhere. No, my experience did not define me. My experience happened when I was a child, by more than one person. I am all my experiences. I forgive the abuser and myself. My God will deal with his wayward sons. My sins, if any, have been forgiven and are as far as the East is from the West and are remembered no more. I am a daughter of a King. I feel it. Each of us feel "special", because God put that within each person. I cannot, I will not, live my life looking in a rear-view mirror, that's Satan's tool. I am moving forward to met my full potential. I am better equipped by my "experience" to avoid "snares" along my earthly sojourn. No experience is wasted, I learned and grew in empathy and love for fellow victims..., I mean victor's. Love you my dear, NIki
    Joy Whitlock

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    1. I truly love you! Thank you for your courage to share and to help in letting others know, that our pain and hurt should never define us, but empower us with empathy and love. Hugs!

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