I know I’m not alone in my struggle with the #metoo campaign last week. It triggered me, even beyond my own comprehension and I just couldn’t find the words to express it.
Then a couple of days ago, when surrounded by an incredible group of women, I started to feel hopeful again as I realised we are finally living in times where its safe to share these things in public and that when we do it releases the shame.
I grew up in a culture that was between stories, as many of us in the Western world did. The old story was that you were with one person your whole life, as both of my grandparents were for over 50 years. When that was challenged back in the 60s and 70s and monogamy became less appealing, we began to experiment with the rules, yet neither sex understood how that worked in practise and in many ways we’re still trying to figure it out.
As our boundaries blurred men were celebrated for their promiscuity, while women were (and still are) berated, so it’s no wonder our limits have been constantly overstepped and that women, so often our own biggest critics carry lifetimes of shame around our sexual encounters.
The powerful thing about #metoo is that simply by sharing the shame the whole world is witnessing an invitation. An invitation for the men who have been perpetrators to redefine their boundaries, an invitation for the men that are protectors to step out of the shadows and an invitation for all women to shake off their wounds and begin to heal the world.
Generations of women before us have suffered in silence and as we come together and share, we heal not only our own wounds but those of the women who weren’t able to. The shame that I’ve carried for half of my life is starting to feel like something I don’t have to carry for the rest of it, and when I look at other women who have shared their sufferings I don’t feel pity, only pride.
Right now trauma is portrayed as ugly, yet if we choose to look closely it’s those who have been through the most that shine the brightest once they can make it to the other side.
What more can we do for those who have suffered?
How can we turn their wounds into scar tissue?
What story do we want to create for the next generation?
I hope that this marks a turning point for our culture, that we can begin to feel safe to speak our truths and transform our pain into gold, and that by doing so we reimagine our stories and give back the voices to the ones that weren’t fortunate enough to before us and the many that are yet to come. ️