To be used by a spiritual leader for his or her own selfish gratification is the greatest betrayal. There is no one higher in “authority” (power) other than God. In the religion I was raised with, I was taught that the priest was between God and me. I had to go through him to get to God. When the priest hurt me, he hurt my ability to connect with everything that is most important inside myself. He hurt me in ways I am still finding out about. He hurt me in ways I am not willing to publicly share yet. I will tell you that the hurt from what he did, is extraordinarily painful. I have circled this issue for a long time. I am well into my recovery. Still, when the feelings and memories came back, I wasn’t sure I could handle it. My “kid” would disassociate so much that I would almost faint, if I didn’t back off some. I had to approach this over and over, until my “kid” trusted me enough, and until I (the adult) felt capable and willing. And it has taken much of God’s Grace. I definitely am not an expert on this. I have approached this issue in my recovery the same as with all the others:
* Be absolutely honest with myself.
* Feel all my feelings, and pay attention to everything that goes on inside myself.
* Trust the child inside myself, he is Real!
* Trust my intuition, I have it for a reason!
* Take good care of myself, be the good parent I never had!
* Get lots of Safe support! The more eye to eye contact, the less shame I will have to carry!
* Wait and see what happens (watch and see if God, or Life is helping out), slowly we learn to trust what we never could trust before!
Finally, if you or a loved one is a victim of clergy abuse, I want to tell you, that I am so sorry that it happened to you! It never should have happened! You didn’t deserve it! You were in no way responsible for it! I do know, however, that each of us has been made in such a way that we have what we need to heal, right within us. It takes time, and it is painful.
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