*Trigger Warning*

I wasn’t told to be quiet, but I wasn’t told to speak up either
The fear and pain of revisiting that night, too much to bear
I often wonder how many children play “hide and seek” with older adults who have a different mission than just finding them in dark corners of the house
I often wonder how many “innocent” moments a child has sitting on a family member’s lap
What I do know, in our community it’s often swept under the rug
Too often
The cycle is allowed to continue and nobody speaks up
Even now, I’m only scratching the surface
If you have to question the way you’ve been touched or a remark from a family member gone too far
If you feel uncomfortable in a situation…
It may not have been right, 9 times out of 10
As a community we push off this issue or, simply put we just don’t listen to our children
Some people ARE just nasty
Some people REALLY need help
The cycle can’t be broken by leaving molestation, sexual assault, and rape in the family closet
I know you don’t want to hear this
But, that closet door should of never been closed to begin with
It seems as though we only open it up when it’s convenient for us
That convenience only comes when we open it slightly to throw another secret it
Then we have to rush to close it before all of the other secrets fall out
Scrambling to keep one foot at the bottom of that door so a secret doesn’t crawl out
What happens in this house, stays in this house
So many houses aren’t homes because secrets lie in every nook, running when the lights turn on like roaches
Family relations turning into family traditions like it’s normal
Sexual assault within a family is not a tradition we should upkeep
These conversations are NEVER easy
They cause discomfort
But does this mean they shouldn’t be had?
Of course not
Encourage your children to speak up
Know your children
Understand their language at every age
Trust and believe them
I thank God that my mom knew the translation of my words when I said, “He showed me his elbow
Not missing the translation of my words and realizing the truth
So many of us haven’t even been able to deal with the secrets in our family closet
Remove your foot from the door, it’s ok
And please, listen carefully, our children need us

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