Monday, September 29, 2008

She's Safe

If you're reading this blog, you likely know some of my history. I was severely abused as a child from the age of 4-10. I endured beatings and sexual assault and starvation and any number of things I wouldn't do to someone I hated, let alone a child I was required to love and raise.

The person who did the abuse never had to face justice for what he did to me, my sister, my step-sister, my mother and various other people. He never had to sit in jail, or face us, his victims, and let us have our say.

Because of my history I am emphatically against child abuse. I have spoken out when the occasion warranted it. I have educated other people on the warning signs of abuse. I have wrestled with my fear of repeating the cycle with my own daughter on countless sleepless nights. I had nights when she was a baby that I handed her to my mom, or my sister and walked away because she wouldn't stop crying and I was afraid of what I was capable of given what I knew about the cycle of violence.

I have erred always on the side of leniency. I do not hit my daughter. I do not use food for punishments. I walk away for ten minutes when she does things that anger me so that I know I am parenting out of responsibility and not out of anger.

I, of all people, know the scars that are left behind when parents discipline through fear and shame. I know that shame never goes away and that fear is immobilizing. I have gone to therapy, I have read books. I have turned to people I love, trust, and admire for advice.

I can not say that I've never made mistakes. I cannot say that I'm a perfect parent and that I've never yelled, that I've never said things I wish I could take back. I cannot say that in 20 years she won't be sitting on some therapists couch talking about how my being gay and being sick ruined her life. But I can say with one hundred percent honesty that I have never, would never, could never abuse or neglect my child. She is so precious and wonderful and the single most important thing in my life.

So to be accused of endangering her...to have to explain to a social worker that she is safe...to know that she was pulled out of class to speak to a social worker without the benefit of knowing that everything was going to be okay...to have to defend my home which is a loving and safe environment, not one she regularly leaves in tears or begs to be taken away from...to have to feel the absolute terror that for some reason some county worker could take this precious person away from her home with her two moms who love her and place her with strangers who could do god only knows what...I have never been so angry, so sickened, so horrified.

And for the person who made these false allegations...I feel nothing but disgust and contempt. How dare anyone use a dangerously overloaded system to wage their contemptible war on my innocent family? How could anyone take valuable resources away from some child who is actually being abused? How can you face your reflection in the mirror when your filthy lies could have ruined my child's life? This is not a game. You didn't win anything by making your false allegations. All you did was reinforce my low opinion of you and prove me right, yet again.

1 comment:

canadamom said...

And I too, hope she never has to go thru what I put you thru, and what we went thru together. No, he never had to face us, or get arrested, but, the Universe at least didn't let him live to do the same to others, or more to us. I will never forgive myself, nor will I ever get over it, but, I do know that deep down you do love me still and that you know I love you..and deep down, that beautiful child of yours will never stop loving you, looking up to you and her other mom. I wish it would all stop NOW