This week, I attended a fundraising breakfast for an organization called TurningPoint. They provide advocacy and support for survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. One of the main ideas shared at the event was that abuse thrives in silence.
It struck a nerve.
Like so many families, I come from one where generational alcoholism, and the unspoken emotional abuse and psychological trauma that goes along with it, was simply the norm. Denial, silence, putting on a happy face and pretending that we were all fine was the expectation….because well, hey, people just don’t talk about stuff like that.
The problem is, the not talking about it is what gives it its power. Left unchecked, addiction, abuse, dysfunction is allowed to fester, grow, and impact generation…after generation…after generation. The result of growing up in a family system in which an unspoken rule is to silently watch each other suffer, is that often times you never really learn how to use your...