Children of Shame – A Documentary

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The documentary Children of Shame exposes atrocities committed at a home for unwed mothers in Tuam, Ireland.  The home was founded in 1925 and closed in 1961.

At the time, religion was an important part of the Irish culture.  Purity was viewed as an essential trait and failure to live up to that standard brought extreme shame, so unwed mothers were sent to special homes.

The unwed mothers were forced to live and work in these homes against their will.  They were treated as criminals, even though fornication was not considered a legal crime.

The babies could be put up for adoption by the home, regardless of the mother’s desire to keep her child.  Children remaining in the home were treated poorly.  They were malnourished, abused, and did not receive appropriate medical care.  This resulted in a mortality rate for babies born out of wedlock that was six times higher than the norm.

Legislating morality has been a hot topic in the United States.  For example: should gay marriage be legalized and should birth control be easily available to all women.

However, stories like this one remind me of the dangers of strictly legalizing morality.  The appearance of purity can become more important than people.  The end result is evil acts are committed to hide immorality.

Beware Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing

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Wayde Zane Slocumb was a counselor at Alabama Psychological Services, until he was arrested for possessing and distributing child pornography.

I was reading about this case on WHNT.com, which got me thinking about similar arrest that have accorded in this area.

A police officer in Huntsville was arrested a few months ago on sexual assault charges.  A youth minister at a Baptist church was arrested for similar charges.  Also, several teachers have been arrested for having sexual relationships with their students in the last couple of years.

These are just the stories of the people that got caught.  There are many other predators out there that go undetected.

I wonder can you ever really know somebody?  I also wonder who can you trust or should you just never trust anybody?

The world is full of wolves in sheep’s clothing and unfortunately they blend very well in our society.

Blue is Terrified of Nail Trims

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I rescued Blue almost two years ago.  He has been a great addition to our family.  He is obedient, an excellent traveling companion, and very protective of his pack.  Basically, Blue is a happy fellow.

Unfortunately, his previous life was not so happy and certain situations will make it very obvious that he still harbors some terrible memories.

Yesterday, I took Blue to the veterinarian for his yearly shots.  He did great when they took a blood sample and gave him the injections. However, when Dr. Buxton approached Blue with the nail trimmer, he went absolutely ballistic.

Before the doctor even touched Blue, he was already snapping, snarling, growling, and lunging at her.  The tech placed a muzzle on Blue and had to hold him down while the doctor trimmed his nails.  I could see the panic in Blue’s eyes and I felt horrible for him.

After it was all over, they put the clippers away and gave Blue a few treats.  He started to calm down and we went to the front to pay the bill.

I don’t know who hurt Blue and caused him to be so scared of getting his nails done, but I hope karma catches up with that idiot.

 

Strength From Pain

 

My current strength comes from a painful past.

When I look back on my childhood years and think about the awful things that occurred, I am left with mixed emotions: sometimes I am angry at what I had to endure, sometimes I am grateful for the people that helped me overcome those experiences, sometimes I am ashamed or embarrassed by how I allowed it to affect my life.

I am determined to make sure my past doesn’t destroy my future.  Instead, I will use my past to make my future better.  When I am faced with a difficult situation, I look back at my past and think,”If I can overcome that, then I should have no problem getting through this.”

My past was filled with pain, but my future is filled with strength.

Forgiving is Difficult

According to the Oxford Dictionary:  forgive means to “stop feeling angry or resentful toward someone for an offense or mistake.”

What if the offense caused a lifetime of pain?  What if the trauma was so horrible you are left suffering with PTSD and depression for the rest of your life?  Do you still forgive the offender?

I spent most of my life refusing to forgive a pedophile that tormented me and my brother.  I wanted revenge.  I used to daydream about finding this man, so I could hurt him as much as he hurt me.  To be honest, I even thought about killing him from time to time.

Even though my mind was constantly dwelling on what happened to us, I refused to talk about it.  Two years ago, I was finally able to tell my story to a therapist.  I told the therapist everything that happened to us and was able to deal with the emotions that were festering (like a nasty infection) all those years.

I still think about that sadistic SOB that abused us, and I just can’t bring myself to say I forgive him.  He caused so much pain that our lives would forever be affected by his actions.  However, I am willing to let go of my anger (which is basically the same thing, but it’s easier to say).  I am ready to move on with my life.

International Justice Mission

Last weekend, I attended the If Gathering 2016 conference.

One of the speakers was from the International Justice Mission (IJM).  She talked about the horrific abuse she suffered at the hands of her husband.  Since she lived in India, she had no recourse and was trapped.

Eventually, she was able to escape the abusive relationship.  Now she works with IJM.  The organization rescues people that have been enslaved and are being used for sex trafficking.

What she said had a huge impact on me.  I thought about the horrible things that happened to me as a child.  I am grateful that I am not a victim anymore.

Unfortunately, there are children being abused today.  How can I help those children?  What can I do to make a difference?  I don’t know the answer to these questions, but I do know it’s time for me to stop ignoring the problem.