Monday, October 31, 2011

Helpful, "Helpful" Comments: A follow-up

In a recent post, I wrote out some of my least favorite comments made by people regarding my sexual assault. Although some were made with good intentions, these comments were invalidating and painful.

I wanted to follow-up that post with a list of positive comments. Over time, I hope to fill my mind – my inner dialogue – with these comments. The first comment listed was said to me this weekend and has been the most meaningful by far.

I’ve only ever known the “you-after-it-happened,” and that’s the “you” I fell in love with.
-       My wonderful husband

Something I’ve been struggling with a lot recently is reconciling my two selves – the me before the assault, and the me afterwards. I have felt like a different person ever since it occurred. Like what happened somehow made me a bad person in both my eyes and in the eyes of those around me. Like it was reflection on me, not him. I turned all of my anger and criticism towards myself. Now I am working towards developing a nicer relationship with myself. I was discussing all of this with my husband, and this was his response. Love it, love it J

We all care about you and want to help out in any way we can.
-       My current professors

All of my professors have now been contacted regarding my decline in academic performance. Ever since I started addressing this stuff in therapy, my grades have slipped. I was so nervous about speaking with them and have been avoiding some of them, but I have been met with nothing but support. My thesis advisor saw how painful it was for me to talk about what’s going on, so he has been acting as a liaison with my other professors and supervisors. I was initially very, very uncomfortable with their support.  I think perhaps because it was giving me permission to be upset when I’ve been burying this stuff for so long. Despite feeling so uncomfortable, it is really nice to know that I am part of such a supportive environment.

You don’t have to talk, but I am here if you need me.
-       A friend in my graduate program

My friend approached me on Friday and casually asked, “how are you”, never expecting that I would look up and burst into tears. Although I didn’t give him the details of why I was upset, it was a load off to take a break from pretending everything is just wonderful these days and to know that I have someone to talk to at school if need be. I'm not sure if I'm depressed or just emotional from digging up old wounds, but I have been crying quite frequently these days.

I’ll keep adding to this list as well, as more comments pop up! Feel free to share your own comments.

In the meantime, I am going to hit the sack!


  1. I hope that these will help to balance out the negative you received from the "Non-helpful"Helpful"Comments".

    My absolute favorite is the statement your husband made. That's so sweet and sounds so honest. I'm so happy you have him.

  2. Thanks, Jaime - he's pretty amazing, if I do say so myself :-)

  3. Did you say that you were a member of Pandora's Aquarium? I just signed up and am waiting for them to approve it. Anyway, if you are on there keep an eye out for me. JaimeIsBroken

  4. Yes, I will definitely keep an eye out for you. KennedyM9 is my pandora username. Looking forward to seeing you around.