Karen answers Rose

Comment by Rose on November 16, 2008 4:36 pm

Dearest Karen,

During our church service today I thought of you. The message of the day required deep thought of how a childʼs life can be changed with careful interventions. A catholic girl thrown into the mist of unbearable trauma. Where did your heart of kindness come from? A nun? A priest, pastor or deacon? Who inspired your survival? How could you find true love and happiness after the pain endured? Do you believe in a higher power?


Dear Rose,

Thank you for thinking of me!  It’s true a child’s path can be changed with the support of parents, family members, and the community.  Careful interventions would’ve helped me if they had presented themselves.  It was so unfortunate not to receive the support I needed to grow up feeling happy, strong, and secure, but somehow I managed to develop a supportive system within myself.  Being a Catholic girl wasn’t an issue, being an abused child with no one to turn to, was.

There were a few people I met along the way who inspired me to grow.  I treasure memories of them.  There was one nun who took a liking to me.  She seemed to sense more than I shared with her.  She was attentive and kind and took special care of me when she saw my bruises.  There was the man who owned the ice cream parlor who listened to me over a chocolate phosphate or green river soda, and a pastor from a neighborhood church, not my own, that would sit and listen to me.  I never shared my abuse with any of them for fear of being judged, but I believe they all suspected.  It was me who always changed the subject or left when our talks got too near the truth.  I was ashamed and believed I was to blame for being abused.  I would simply gain some strength and acceptance from those talks that was so missing from my family life.  I found happiness and love through music and art, people with tender hearts, and finding small moments of peace.

And, yes, Rose, I believe in God,



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