Rape & Recovery: Preparing to tell my mom

“My mom saw the drawing as well, and said it was good, but perhaps too dark in emotion.

That was a perfect opportunity. Last year I would have bailed, but that was my chance.

I didn’t tell my mom what happened to me, but I did tell her that I had such emotions and I can’t always be cheerful.

I proceeded to tell her that I have before sheltered her from some things when I can, but that now I’m an adult. And as an adult, I want honesty in my life, and I don’t want to filter anything.

It was a clear message: no more lies, no more spinning the truth, and no more lying about bad things. I WANT honesty in my life.”

As you all know, there has been a good portion of years around what happened to me, in which I avoided the idea of telling my mom, as if it would set me on fire. I guess in full honesty, I did it half for her (to spare her the pain) and half for me (I was too drained to deal with emotions that anyone but me is having). In any case, once in university, I had spared my mom some bad moments, thinking I was protecting her. So by the time the rape happened, and things got a lot harder and darker, I started sparing her anything remotely bad- even me having the flu. It’s a bad cycle to be in. Until that time, we had the type of relationship where I could share anything. Pushing down all my emotions wasn’t good.

Anyway, somewhere down the line last year, I started occasionally attempting to admit a truth. I said when I was sick, I said when I had some other problems.

It wasn’t a huge thing, but it was still a big step considering.

Still, when it comes to a lot in my life, I am still pretty much leading a double life, and it’s exhausting. I bet there are people that live like this all their life, I’m sure of it- people with incurable conditions that they don’t want known, people to whom something happened and they never admitted a word. I’m not saying that I want everyone knowing- but I don’t want to hide so much, all the time anymore. A lot of who I was, who I always wanted to be, was based on honesty, and such thing weight on me. I didn’t tell a lot of my friends that I was raped, at least for year and a half after. I never told my mom I was depressed and why. In my dance classes, for the first months, I had too many panic attacks to count. I often had to stop in the middle of class, and just watch. Who knows what people thought- people that are now friends- especially when I often said I was dizzy or sick. Anyway. Then there is the other problem. I’m an artist. And I do, I write bad things, but that isn’t venting for me…in drawing however, I’m often unable to draw anything sad, or scary, or dark.

Again, I’m not saying I want to tell everyone- but for someone who wants to be an artist, someone who would like to lead honest lifestyle…I’ve pretty much been concealing all I can. With other people. With myself. At some point you forget that you wanted to be honest at all. The brain is like a sponge. The actions you take may not be who you are…but they always leave a mark.

*

So I don’t want that heaviness anymore. I don’t want this constant dishonesty. It makes things gather in me, and then I explode and break down, like I’m not experiencing normal emotion. And I am not- when I break down, it’s usually when I have gathered a lot more than one emotion for a while. I still have a lot to recover, and get to a happy place…but it’s time to start cultivating the type of person I would like to be in the future. No more hiding behind what I lost. And so I have been thinking about it. It’s TIME. If I ever want to get to an honest place with my mom again, she needs to know this.

I thought about this for few days. I know now, I definitely want her to know.

Now, considering our current relationship, it’s under question how long it will take me to do it. There is a big part in me that is really scared of the idea of telling her.

So, I am trying to start somewhere, where I can. Last week, I finally drew something like a memory from the times when I was raped. It was very colorful and pretty, not fully direct in its message…but it was still hitting a dark note. I was done concealing how I feel for myself. No more hiding behind what happened to me. No blown up drama, but just…the truth.

My mom saw the drawing as well, and said it was good, but perhaps too dark in emotion.

That was a perfect opportunity. Last year I would have bailed, but that was my chance.

I didn’t tell my mom what happened to me, but I did tell her that I had such emotions and I can’t always be cheerful. I proceeded to tell her that I have before sheltered her from some things when I can, but that now I’m an adult. And as an adult, I want honesty in my life, and I don’t want to filter anything. It was a clear message: no more lies, no more spinning the truth, and no more lying about bad things. I WANT honesty in my life. And since despite my doubts in it, I am still here, still living, and still having a choice in what I do, it’s time I stop mourning the person who I could have been. It’s time I start building the person I’d like to be.

Yes, I haven’t told my mom. I will, one day soon. I thought that would be scary, but I’m more scared of the person I’m becoming if I don’t. I’m more scared of stomping all over myself in effort to protect everyone in my life. So THIS, deciding to tell her, it actually feels as a relief.

All the things that I told her now, I would have been scared to say 2 years back. Yet saying them now…it feels like the best step I have done in a while. I’m finally doing something present, something about actually living, not living in constant regret of giving up on myself. I’m willing to tell my mom about this. This isn’t giving up. I’m still here and kicking. And I’m glad to finally start saying those things. To my delight, she took it well. She seemed understanding actually- and when I said I want to be fully honest again, she said of course. It made me wonder who was I protecting for so long- her, or myself?

All I know is, I have TAKEN a STEP.

One out of many. One towards being someone new. Someone I may actually like.

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