“Someday I’ll fly, Someday I’ll soar
Someday I’ll be so damn much more
‘Cuz I’m bigger than my body gives me credit for
I’m bigger than my body now…”
–John Mayer, Bigger Than My Body
I’ve been blogging since 2003. I started out on LiveJournal, and used my given name. I only commented on other LiveJournal bloggers.
Then I became aware of the blogosphere. When I made the move to Blogger in 2007, I used my nickname, Dory, and I went out of my way to never use my real name, and kept mum on the rest of my family’s real names. I began commenting on blogs all over and cultivating relationships with other bloggers.
Then I became aware of Social Networking, and that blew apart my M.O. I got on Facebook, and only used the name “Dory.” But then I began wondering how many people I might miss out on reconnecting with if they searched for me by my given name. I decided, eh, screw it; I’ll use my and Tom’s real name and still guard the boys’ names. I put my real name on my Facebook account and moved onto more earth-shattering matters such as the best buy on 85/15 Ground Beef and switching from Bounce to Downy.
Now my Facebook has links to my blog, and my blog has links back to Facebook.
I told you that to tell you this.
I wrote a couple of posts about my experience with domestic violence, and I met Maggie, the Bonafide Innernetz Aingel who started up Violence Unsilenced. The experience of actually writing those posts was painful. I physically shook while I poured out my pain, but knowing that I may be able to give someone that little oomph to exit an abusive relationship was worth it. I mulled over writing more, but I have a couple concerns.
For instance, I remember getting into a fight with The Girlbeater over “our” money. He demanded that I sign over my wages to him, and I refused. Before I knew it, I was laying face up on the bed with him straddling me, my arms and shoulders pinned by his knees, one hand hobbling my wrists and the other fist drawn back poised to strike. The bedroom door opened and his father asked, “What’s going on here?”
“Nothing that’s any of your business. Shut the door,” he directed in a voice low, deliberate, and strained with rage.
And his father, without a word, SHUT THE DOOR.
I hate to leave you hanging there, but that’s where the memory ends. My therapist explained to me that’s sometimes how our brains deal with trauma that’s just too much for us to handle. If or when I’m ready, I may receive the conclusion of that memory.
I want to write more about my experiences, but how can I possibly tell you a story like the above? Either I leave you hanging, or I pretty much make shit up. Neither option lends itself to the authenticity I want to bring.
Secondly, the other factor in the equation is The Girlbeater himself.
A couple weeks ago when I was on Facebook, his face popped up on the People You May Know box. I almost threw up. Literally. This meant that one of my friends from my high school graduating class is friends with him. How can I handle the possibility of him finding me on Facebook and then heading on over here, if I have such a visceral reaction just to his face popping up unexpectedly?
I have a tangled knot of thoughts and I can’t find either end.
I want to speak, to be unsilenced.
But I’m gagged by the possibility of him showing up here. I just don’t even know how I would handle it. What if he *gulp* contacted me? What if he challenged my memories to a debate?
He’s currently awaiting trial for kidnapping and rape. It’s amazingly easy to get my physical address. What is he capable of?
I don’t know.
He has no right to know of any details of my life, but here I am, waving them all over the damn internet and hanging big flashing neon arrows pointed towards them.
I want to tell you a story about a young woman finding her first love and being battered by him in every way possible.
It’s not fair.