Trigger warning for abuse

I have always battled with the idea of do I tell my story or do I not? It was a hard hitting personal experience that happened over 10 years ago and it is hard to admit that I am still suffering from the aftermath of this today whilst my abuser is seemingly living a successful, carefree life but then again so am I on the outside. People would never believe I have gone through what I have but I also don't know what these people are looking for, or expecting. How would you know what someone is going through just from the outside? Especially when they themselves have spent years hiding from it.

Being a victim/survivor, however you wish to identify it, is a whirlwind experience and every single person will have their own recovery path. It's hard to come to terms with that, at least for me because it was as if I was looking for a strict time frame and method to recovering and truth is you will never find one. There are times when you continue to improve and recover, seemingly following this 'right path' and then a curveball hits and flings you a few steps back. I spent time looking up recovery, counsellors, different types of therapy because I just wanted to rid myself of the experience and all the issues that followed but truth is, nobody can every really do that in any circumstance. You can't rid yourself of an experience you have lived through, no matter how hard you try and think you can find a way around it.

It is difficult to comes to terms with the fact this will always be and it will impact my future but it is important to remember that people before me have got through this and those after me will and I know that I can. Would I have preferred not to have gone through what I did? Most certainly. But is that my reality? Unfortunately not.

You can spend forever looking up what happened to you, trying to figure out how it came to happen, what led up to it, what happened after and the people that you lost trust and respect for along the way and why they chose to take the path they did but you will never find those answers, at least not the answers you are hoping for. You can drive yourself crazy going through this process and likelihood is, a lot of us have done it but have we ever got anywhere or bettered ourselves by doing so?

Some people shy away from telling their story and some feel as if they need to share it to help people understand and even raise awareness. Truth is, I sway between them both constantly. Some days I wish to pretend it didn't happen and will try and avoid the topic at all costs, other days I feel like I need to share and feel like I could possibly help others that have been through the same. It can be difficult fighting between them both. There are times when I think of my future and maybe there are people I will feel the need to share my story with and I can't help but to think 'what if I just pretend none of it ever happened?'
The thought is quite intriguing and it is completely up to me if I do wish to share it or not but my experience has shaped who I am today and I wouldn't be the person I am today without it, both the good and ugly sides. I believe I am stronger and more independent because of it but I definitely don't come without my challenges.

I don't think I will ever tell my full story publicly and that is not in any defence to my abusers. It's more to do with the fact the more people that know a story, the more it can become twisted. Those close to me will know my story if I wish to have told them whereas some remain without knowing but I know that the story I have told is the truth and it's mine to tell - not for it to be twisted by anyone else. If anyone ever wishes to know then they should be aware that it will lie with me.

My experience is my own and I know people have been through far worse and I know others will not have experienced something similar and I hope that remains the case from the bottom of my heart.

People who have been victims to sexual and physical violence will know the journey to recovery is a long and confusing one. Full of back and fourths, ups and downs along the way. I am still facing that over 10 years later and I don't think it necessarily gets any easier but you most definitely get stronger. And like I said, there are days when I feel like I can vent and want to (like today) but there are also days when I wish not to speak of it and need a distraction and that's okay either way.

We will just deal with it all as it comes ♡