Monday, April 20, 2009

Maggie. Dammit.


Sometimes the blogosphere gets it right.
Maggie, dammit, got it right.
Maybe I like her because I get to say dammit dammit dammit on my G-rated blog as many times as I want to. Dammit.
Maybe it's because she has the substance I look for in a blog.
Maybe it's because she IS the epitome of blog community.
Maybe it's because she's an example of how blogs can change lives.
Maggie is doing that.
From her little blog called.....
Violence UnSilencedExcept it isn't little at all. It's huge.
With a little help from her friend Mojo, who created most of the logos, Violence Unsilenced went live a few weeks ago. They are dipping in waters that few like to splash around in. Muddy and dark. 'Cept Maggie jumped. Feet first.

I have never been a victim of domestic violence. But I know women who have walked out of that particular hell and somehow lived to tell the tale. Maggie sent an invitation to the battered and bruised - male and female. There are hotline numbers and Safety Alerts - she even gave them a brilliant Escape Button in the sidebar to quietly click in case their abuser walks in the room and catches them blogging about it.
But blog they do. Here's an example.

Hi. My name is Wendy and this is my story.

He verbally abused me and so I did what I didn’t want to do. When I hadn’t done a satisfactory job because I was crying too much, he proceeded to beat me with a billy club. In case you don’t know what that is, it’s a police baton. He beat me so bad that I had serious bruising all over my back and head. I nearly lost consciousness at one point, but had to force myself to stay together because I knew if I lost consciousness that would piss him off even more. He eventually threw up and passed out and I left immediately.
The next day he asked how I got all of those bruises. I was honest.
I think because of this beating that some damage was done to me that still to this day causes me problems now, ten years later."
Wendy's story gets worse, much worse, but she survived to show the marks that once were covered with makeup. There are many like Wendy. They blog about emotional and sexual abuse, hiding in closets, and finding safe havens for their children. They blog about getting out, finding hope, going back to school, becoming attorneys, saying goodbye, starting over. You've heard the stories before. It is not news to the masses. But what may be news is the way bruises meet bruises on this blog. There's a sense of screaming validation that is anything but silent.

Maggie, you are brave. Those who tell their stories are brave. Those who reach out to help them are the best of the best of humanity. Thank you for bringing a healing place of comfort to those who need it.
I wish they didn't need it.

Dammit.




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33 comments:

katherine. said...

I will surely go check it out.

the more people who know about it...the more it may help.

Smorg said...

If only we can equip them with a button that, when pushed, would shoot a high voltage zap of lightning straight at those monsters that love to pick on people who are weaker than they are, ay? Thanks for spreading the words, Mimi! :o)

bobbie said...

I have known a few people who could have benefited so much from something like this.
Thank you, and thank them, for offering hope to those who need it so desperately.

Maggie, Dammit said...

Ohhhhhhh, WOW.

I don't know what to say, Mimi. I'm speechless over here.

Wow.

THANK YOU SO MUCH. Thank you, of course, for your too-kind words, but above all thank you for adding your voice to this chorus and spreading the much-needed word. I am so grateful to you for this, you have no idea.

Thank you.

XO

Mark said...

This is such an important aspect of our society to create awareness about. Thank-you for turning us on to Maggie's site.

Mojo said...

Well I was going to introduce you two, but I see you've already met.

The more people know about this, the more effective it becomes. The more the silence is shattered, the weaker the power of the abusers gets. So thank you for helping get this in front of people.

And since we're mentioning the "little people", Sam at Temptation Designs deserves a big shout out for her work on the site. She not only designed VU (and the main graphics -- I only did a few badges and banners) she donated both the hosting and the domain name. Without her, VU would still exist -- but it wouldn't be what it is.

But you're right. This is when blogging is at its best. The community that develops out of it is astounding. So the big thanks go to those who tell the stories -- and most of all to those who come and read and comment and stand with them. With enough of those voices, the silence cannot prevail.

Thanks Your Majesty, for adding your voice to the cause.

Mimi Lenox said...

Katherine - It is such a worthy cause and effort. I can't read her site without crying. Be warned.

Mimi Lenox said...

Smorg - A button! There ya go! But it's more than that as you know, it's emotional and verbal abuse as well. I'm glad Maggie is here to help. She is to be commended.

Mimi Lenox said...

Bobbie - I know her site is going to make a difference.

Mimi Lenox said...

Maggie - I hope others will take the button and spread the word as well. I forgot to say that in my post. Going now to change that!

You are so welcome.
Your work is important and universal.

Mimi Lenox said...

Mark - We should all have those buttons in our sidebars.

Mimi Lenox said...

Mojo - Thanks for letting us know about Sam. What a wonderful person.

I hope readers will go over and lend support.

Sandee said...

In some cultures it's fine to beat your women to keep them in line. They are considered property. Until this mindset is eradicated these stories will continue. Bless all these battered women. May they find the peace they so deserve.

Have a terrific day Mimi. Big hug and lotsa lovies. :)

Bond said...

What a wonderful idea. I have known too many women who put themselves into relationships such as the one 'Wendy' is in.

It is grand that someone has the heart and soul to give women (and men) a place to seek help.

Akelamalu said...

I have known women who stay in an abusive relationship, though it has always defeated me why they stay. It needs people like Maggie and Wendy to bring it all out into the open and encourage others to do the same - well done both of them.

Autumn said...

Gotta love blovements. (Did I do that one right?) Fortunately, I was very conscious of the wrong things in my world when I was a child & made every effort to break all sorts of cycles. As a result, despite having watched my mother being beaten (& being beaten by her), I've never been in an abusive relationship. I don't know if I just didn't give out the vibes to the abusive types or just ignored them on some level, but I've been fortunate.
Those who stay need to educate themselves. I wish this blovement much success!

Bud Weiser, WTIT said...

Terrfic job bringing this to everyone's attention. Well done!

The Gal Herself said...

Reading this post I kept hearing that John Mayer song, "So fathers, be good to your daughters. Daughters will love like you do. Girls become lovers who turn into mothers. So mothers be good to your daughters, too." We have to start teaching the next generation, the little girls, that true love doesn't hurt. And the first step to that is conversations, and blogs, like this one. Thanks to you and Maggie for shiny a light on this problem. This is where hope begins.

Julie said...

Your blog provides so much good to the blogosphere...this is another reason why.

I like Smorg's idea!

But better yet...is seeing their name on a funeral home list of intakes as I saw. That's probably the meanest thing I've ever said...just can't get past it though.

You're a great woman my friend!

Dawn (Twisted Sister) said...

Wonderful post Mimi. I will check it out....

Mimi Lenox said...

Sandee - It's a crazy world out there for sure, but this story is as old as dirt and goes both ways. Women can be just as abusive as men.

Mimi Lenox said...

Bond - Maggie has a huge heart. That is evident.

Mimi Lenox said...

Akelamalu - Send Reiki! You know how to do that so well!

carol g said...

It is a sad state of affairs for sure. My thanks to Maggie for opening a huge door to heal huge wounds.

Mimi Lenox said...

Autumn - A lot of men don't show their true colors early on and then there are kids involved (which is really more incentive to leave if you think about it) but logistically harder and financially impossible for many. A simple divorce is a struggle - how much harder must it be for someone whose self-esteem has been broken down by this kind of control.

Mimi Lenox said...

Bud - Maggie deserves credit, not me.

Mimi Lenox said...

Gal - Hope does begin with acknowledgment and dialogue...then action. Love that song...

Mimi Lenox said...

Julie - A funeral home intake list? What do you mean? I don't get it (Mims is stressed today!) Please 'splain.

Mimi Lenox said...

Dawn - It's a hard read.

Mimi Lenox said...

Carol - One of the saddest things on the planet. Thanks for your support.

Travis said...

My uncle and I have worked very hard to break the cylce of abuse on the paternal side of my family. And to his partial credit, my father broke the cycle of physical abuse. Regrettably, he didn't understand that emotional abuse also leaves scars.

The more we teach respect and tolerance to our youth, the more chance we have to leave all forms of abuse to our more primitive past.

Speedcat Hollydale said...

I am amazed by stories of both men and women putting up with violence ... verbal or physical. I realize that some stay in a relationship because of fear, or threats to family, but MANY just ignore the early stages. They get hit and forgive. How many horrible stories could have been prevented by running at the VERY FIRST SIGN. I do not believe in "hoping" for someone to change. If there is abuse ... get out now and never look back. EVER

Julie said...

Ummm the funeral home intake list I spoke.....A couple years ago I saw a list in a funeral home that included someone who had physically abused me. I put him behind bars. I was told he took his own life after many more years of physically abusing other women. Though I was shocked I had finally reached a sense of not having to look over my shoulder or keep track of where he was.

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