Nurturing Wholeness in Survivors

Nurturing Wholeness in Survivors

This was first published May 22, 2021

In the years leading up to my choice to call out my ex I did a ton of research on transformative justice and accountability processes because I truly believed in his capacity for transformation.

But the people around me at the time were saying that it was pointless and that abusers never change.

And while my drive to resolve my trauma by trying to change someone else rather than focusing on reclaiming my own agency was certainly misguided, I wish someone had seen and given love to that part of me that believed so deeply in the inherent goodness of my ex, who saw that I spent months doing research and seeking support trying to organize a community held process where we would both be supported in healing and reconciliation.

It’s not that I don’t/didn’t also harbor anger and resentment- I did, and being honest sometimes I still am angry.

It’s just that now I have an awareness of both of those things inside of me, and I see that allowing the anger and resentment to fuel the choices I made only brought me further pain and further out of alignment with my integrity.

I wish someone reflected back that belief in the inherent goodness of my ex that I had, because when I only had the anger and resentment reflected back, that was what grew.

I wonder where I would be if someone had told me it’s okay to be angry, but that my love and belief in someone who had hurt me was a beautiful thing, and that with learning proper boundaries I could choose to act from that place instead.

These experiences and my reflections on them has taught me so much about what I do and don’t want to do. Who I do and don’t want to be. What I want to share with others walking similar paths.

The freedom that comes with balancing love for others with strong boundaries is the kind of healing magic I wish to share with all survivors.

The freedom of knowing how to take proper responsibility for myself and my needs and not attempt to control others to meet them is the magic I wish to share with those who have abused.

I want to share that seeing wholeness in everyone- from our anger and our cruelty to the most beautiful, lovable qualities we have- is the key to freedom, it’s the key to choosing integrity.