A bridge of hope
I love that you chose a bridge as the symbol for this challenge H. Nemesis Nyx
I view myself as one of your friends, even though my heart and mind have been a little pre-occupied and bruised with other events in my life right now.
I have been here. In the background, whilst you H. Nemesis Nyx , and Jules and Ayesha Talib Wissanji have been in the meadows, as and with, hereford cows and horses and wild mustangs even. I have been here. I think I would like to be the tree in those fields. I offer shade, shelter, a place to take a breath of fresh air, have a laugh, and a little respite from the mud and toil. (See what I did with the photo of a bridge and a tree!)
A bridge to me is an important symbol. It is the connection between two divides. A linking of two opposites. A symbol of peace between two opposing forces. A way forward; through; over. A connection that opens up the way for connections to be made; for communication to flow.
I do not have all the answers to your questions. What I do know is this…
You have not lost your mind!
The more we talk, the better. Real truths real communicating, real stories, real emotions and real consequences. The more people tell their truths; the better we all understand.
We need to know what it feels like. For everyone. The survivor, the perpetrator, the bystanders, the parents. Everyone. The thoughts, the reasons, the behaviors, the urges, the fears that need to be listened to, understood better. So in turn, these can be turned into strategies for healing, for prevention, for change.
Adults do need to talk about children differently. The problem is, adults were children once, children who had the same things done to them or taught to them.
Adults are entrenched in their ways, their habits, their fears; it is hard to crack those shells. We have to try. It’s as they say, a vicious, never-ending cycle. It’s harder to break a habit than teach new ones.
Yes, we need to talk about children differently. More importantly we need to think about children differently. We also need to talk to children differently. We need to understand and teach and talk to our children. From the age of three!
We have a children’s bill of rights in our country. I’m certain you must have to.
We need to teach children of their rights.
We need children to view themselves as worthy of having rights. To believe it.
The majority of children I teach and talk to, do not know they have rights.
Children have rights! They need to know that!
We need to share that message. In homes and schools. On the television and in movies. Through sports and video games and media.
We need to teach our children to protect themselves. To defend themselves. To give themselves the tools to ask for help, to know how to stop being a bully, to know how to stop being bullied, to know how to intervene, to overcome fear, to know between right and wrong, to behave with compassion for a fellow human being. How not to be invisible or small or unnoticed. To gain an adults attention.
To become adults that know how to do all these things too. New habits are easier to teach. To break the cycle.
It takes time. It takes perseverence.
By sharing your stories, your experiences. By listening to the other side’s experiences, triggers, fears.
These are the ways, we can start building bridges of real understanding, that will clear the path for the future.
There are so many children we have lost already; so many we will lose. But there are also, so many who have been saved, because someone taught them how. Someone gave them the tools. Someone believed in them. Someone showed them how to survive. Someone showed them love.
Keep talking. Keep sharing. Keep teaching. Keep searching for answers…
Your courage and truth (all of you survivors) gives our children the greatest gift of all—