I hate being powerless. I hate being powerless and if I were to let myself, I’d become the very worst version of “me” in the search for opportunities to exert power over others… more specifically over men. I hated those moments… you’re on bottom, the man is on top – he’s forcing you to call him daddy… a word you despise twofold… one you hate your father and two, you just flat out think it’s disgusting. They pin your hands down, your legs apart and they take from you your ability to choose, to want, to need. I hate being powerless.

I hate being powerless so much that I’d rather harm myself as a way of proving that I at least have control over something… I’d deny myself food, or cut my skin, or drink myself down with hope of passing out.

Control is the opposite of powerlessness and I need control to feel ok. While I now know this to not necessarily be true, I need control to feel safe. You see the “worst version of myself” I referred to earlier is the woman who would stop at nothing to hurt a man and herself just to prove that she is capable of something powerful… not weak.  In my younger years, when my father would turn me out and force me to go with men I hated for sex I’d find myself sometimes sneaking into bars on the way home to flirt with other guys. I’d flirt, not to “get” but just so that I could become the ultimate tease to then turn and walk away. I wanted to be in control — scratch that; I was never really in control. I wanted to feel like my world wasn’t out of control.

Power is what the weak want and the strong take for granted.

Power is what generations of societies have told men they have a inalienable right to–

It’s what the same societies have told women they don’t deserve.

Power ushers in cooruption when it’s not coupled with grace.

Power without wisdom is selfish.

Power can be good and beautiful and righteous – we just so often forget to paint with these shades.

Power to the people?

I don’t trust that.

Power to the governments?

I don’t trust that either.

Power to the one true God who was and is and is to come.

He is the only power that hasn’t taken advantage of my memories and scared my future.  His is the power I’ll yield to.

In yield in God’s power not to become the worst version of myself.  I yield and thank Him for saving me from what could have been so much worse.  A trafficked girl’s recovery process is all about redirecting formally misdirected power and learning to use it appropriately.  Help me put the power back where it belongs.

May this blog serve as an education to those who do not yet know or understand the atrocities of trafficking and may it serve as an encouragement to those who understand it all too well.


Giving Up

I should rename this blog “Ugly Confessions of a Trafficking Survivor” because that’s really what it’s become.  I’ve gone pretty silent this past week… not just from blogging but pretty much in all forms of life… my job, my friends, myself, with my God, my daily routine… all pretty much silent.

I’ve prided myself on being someone who can handle a lot of stress at once.  My motto has always been “I’ll figure it out.”  So when I reach a point where I’ve overwhelmed and feel like I can’t make sense of a solution I can spiral downward emotionally.  Sleep hasn’t come in much quantity or quality for the past several weeks, maybe 2-4 hours a night, but I kept moving forward.  Finally, last week I reached a point where I just threw up my hands and said, “No more, I’m done.  I’m tired of fighting, I’m tried of trying, I’m just tired and I’m done.”  I was having all these crazy feelings including wanting to go home– even though home for me means a brothel.  I was sick and tired of the pain and exhaustion and didn’t care what happened to me, I just wanted to rest.  Apparently, much of this is due to sleep depravation but I just felt like I was loosing it… it’s amazing how much not sleeping can intensify trauma triggers.  Allow me to sugarcoat things by saying that I was simply in a bad space.  (And honestly, I’m not sure how much I’ve improved since then but we’re working on it.)

You see, it drives me crazy when organizations say that they “rescue” girls out of trafficking.  What they normally do is remove the girl from an awful, abusive situation and plug her into a recovery program.  This is great, don’t get me wrong, but the NPO’s act of taking her out of the pimp’s hands is only the beginning of the rescue.  She won’t truly have been rescued until she’s also free from herself, from the nightmares, from the flashback and triggers, from the insomnia, and from the guilty pain. The true rescue is a long, hard process.

True rescue comes in faith.  I hate this process but recognize that it’s necessary.  Of course I want to be free, but in all transparency, there are weeks like this week when I don’t want to fight for it– it doesn’t seem worth it.  People often say to me, “Oh, you’re so strong!” … I can’t stand that… at least not when I’m in the type of mood I’m in now.  I know their comments are coming from a supportive heart but all I want to respond back is, “Shut up! I don’t feel strong. Stop telling me I’m something that I’m not! Stop putting pressure on me to succeed when all I’m attempting to do is survive.”

If I’ve learned anything in this life, it’s that very little reality is black and white.  The grey is that I’m a survivor of sex trafficking, working to help other victims and survivors, and I still have so much healing to do.  I call myself royally screwed up, my friends call this a rough patch.  The grey is that every survivor is different but we will all share a undeniably tough road.  The grey is that some people do reject freedom, that criminals are also wounded and that you may never understand me and I may never understand you.  There is so much grey to life…

I write to you today with this very numb heart.  It’s not even sad at the moment, it’s just numb.  I try to write with honesty because I feel I owe that to myself and to the other broken people reading these posts.  So in that very honestly I say, f%$& pain and f%$& reality–  instead, here’s to hearts like mine that are beating with faith that hope will bring a better tomorrow.

May this blog serve as an education to those who do not yet know or understand the atrocities of trafficking and may it serve as an encouragement to those who understand it all too well.

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