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beyond the words
monday, november 11, 2002

for the last year or so a portion of my site that is very important to me has been off-line waiting for a redesign. i just couldn't think of a design and finally, earlier today, forced myself to get it back up. it's been down too long. may i present beyond the words, a site and ring dedicated to survivors of verbal and psychological abuse.

abuse in general has been a big buzz word for years, although i don't think the authorities have taken it serious enough except for kids and even then it has to be visible abuse - sexual, physical, or neglect. these forms of abuse are things you can see, things you can quantify or verify in some way. verbal and psychological abuse doesn't have that marker. as a result, these forms of abuse (which tend to go hand in hand) tend to be the most ignored and the most likely to not be taken seriously.

i've written about this before, but, honestly, i don't think i can talk about it enough. we tolerate this abuse, even act like it's nothing serious. and people who think that way couldn't be any more wrong. verbal and psychological abuse can be far more serious than other kinds of abuse. think about it. the scars aren't visible, the abuse itself isn't taken seriously - especially for children - and is often denied. and folks, broken bones heal, the emotional consequences often don't. same for verbal and psychological abuse. it takes a long time, if ever to heal, and most the people you know are either downplaying the abuse or claiming it didn't happen at all. sometimes they associate it with a single childhood experience, implying you are acting like a child to even let the abuse bother you.

we have to stop the abuse. we must start taking it seriously. and we need to step in and stop our children whenever they call someone stupid and do all those other things that kids do to hurt each other without laying a hand on their victims. until we stop allowing our kids bully other kids - whether physically, verbally, or psychologically ("everyone else is going to debbie's party. why didn't she invite me?"), until we stop seeing these behaviors as "just" part of childhood, until we start being role models of appropriate behavior and speech, and until we start taking the damage that words and manipulation have on others seriously, these forms of abuse will continue to pervade our society.

it's out there. it's more prevalent than you think. and it needs to be taken seriously and fought against just as much as any other form of abuse.

i'm a survivor. i always have been. but not everyone else is. for those who aren't as strong, take a stand. don't let kids abuse each other, step in when an adult is being verbally abusive to a kid or another adult. be willing to protect not only from the scars you see, but those that are never seen.

please take it seriously. it's long since been time.

site of the moment:
ring of the moment:
word of the moment: alter

to make different without changing into something else; castrate, spay; to become different