A few recent Issues: Territorial Survivors/College Knowledge/Sex

A few recent issues I have been meaning to blog about:

Territorial Survivors

I really dislike what I am about to say, but I have to say it. There are some survivors who have lost the real meaning behind being a survivor and what they had set out to do, which was help people. Obviously, I will NEVER mention any names. But I really find it shameful to be a survivor of human trafficking but yet, not be interested in helping your fellow survivor, unless it brings publicity to yourself. I thought this was about helping, awareness, sharing experiences, getting others out of the lifestyle…We are supposed to be working together. As one…Then it turns into this game of, well, this is my area so she/he shouldn’t be the one being interviewed or asked to speak or given a book… I just don’t get it. If you want to be rich, then abolition isn’t the right avenue. Maybe it is just their way of coping…I certainly hope so. Because I can’t think of any reason that would be acceptable. At least, not for me. I don’t care if I was asked to speak in an alley way, I will do anything and everything to help fight human trafficking in any way I can. No event or aspect of it is too small, in my eyes. No person is insignificant. I will never be that person who is “too busy” to return emails/phone calls/texts regarding human trafficking. That just isn’t me. I just happened to meet the right people at the right time, with regards to my interviews and the documentary. (Don’t ask me how, LOL) I just get frustrated seeing/hearing these things and I guess my bar for survivors is higher than any other abolitionist, as I think it should be.

College of Knowledge?

I have been speaking at lots of colleges lately. It really angers me to hear about the events that these colleges are putting on, with the money the students parent’s are giving them! I spoke at one college where I was told that a week before, a female musician was singing on stage where she had huge blow up legs that were spread open on the stage and she was shooting out fake money into the crowd. THIS IS WHAT YOU ARE PAYING FOR!!!!!????? Is that an education? This is happening everywhere!! Everywhere! Our society has no idea that we are damning women to be sexual entities from a very young age. We are grooming them to be that way. All of us are. The cartoons with the girls in teeny weeny skirts, the apps named “pimp my screen,” the accessory stores for girls that have basically naked women on their advertisements. REALLY? We need to do something about this! We are hurting the men and boys too, as we are giving them the wrong impression and then when they do the wrong thing, we punish them. But we also told them to do it. How confusing is that?

A Little Sex Rant

Everything seems to evolve around sex! It frustrates me so much. People obtain corporate jobs by having sex. Get out of trouble by having sex. Get revenge by having sex. Feel loved by having sex. Think they can trap someone by having sex. Get something for free for having sex. It’s not free. They are taking your soul. Money isn’t everything and neither is sex. 

New Tatt!

Anyway, on a lighter note, I will be getting a tattoo on Friday that symbolizes my freedom from sex trafficking. I won’t tell you anything about it but I will post pictures!

The Struggle

I look at myself, where I am today, and most of the time, it makes me smile. But then there are the days where it makes me wonder how the hell I got here. I look at other people and think, they don’t even know me. They only know a part of me, and if they knew the other part, I might not be invited to their houses, asked to go to lunch, etc. Even though I am strong enough to handle the consequences of this, and be who I am, other people are not strong enough. I struggle on a daily basis with PTSD, shame, pain, and more. I try not to let it get to me, but after years of pushing it away and distancing myself from my story, I think it is finally hitting me. I finally get what happened and I understand it and I do not wish it against anyone. I was watching Half the Sky the other night, a really amazing documentary that incorporated Somaly Mam’s story and she had a place where she was helping other girls that had gone through what she went through; sold to a brothel at a young age. And although these young children had been through ridiculous amounts of trauma, mentally and physically, they seemed intensely happy and fulfilled being with her at her schoool/program. I feel like this is something that all sex trafficking survivors need. A camp or short term residential where they would reside together, bonding, sharing, and loving each other, because they are all the same! I think its a great thing, something that each state should have. Perhaps it would help those struggling decades after they have become free. At this point, I would just like to see more survivors alive, well, and free decades later!

Fear of?

I had a dream last night that the pimp had risen from the dead. It shocked and scared me. I still have that fear in me that when I think of him or see him, even in a dream, I’m afraid. I still have fear. Honestly, I don’t think it is fear of him anymore. I think it is fear of being in that situation again; under pimp control; a human trafficking victim. The fear of having someone take over your body, mind, and soul, without the ability to override. That is scary. To look deep into yourself and realize you have no control of any part of you; none. Like a rag doll or a puppet, just hanging/waiting for someone to move you into position. That scares the shit out of me. Have you ever felt that out of control? Once I was out of that situation, it was hard to take the control back. What did I want to eat? I don’t know. Where did I want to go? I don’t know. I still have problems deciding what I want to eat. I’m pretty sure that is because I was not given much to eat so I got used to little amounts of food. Now, when given the choice, I never really know what I want. Most other things though, I can now make solid decisions on. It was a long road but I was able to get my “backbone” back. Do you have anything that resembles this feeling?

It’s Been Over 20 Years…WTF?

I was under pimp control for (2) years of my life. But that was (10) years ago! Why am I not over this?

I thought I was in control of my emotions and PTSD and was on the road to recovery. I have been speaking to others of my story for years now and have no problems telling all parts of my story without having any repercussions, i.e. nightmares, flashbacks, etc. I had gone from a 10+ in those emotions to a 1 and I was proud of myself for that.

However, recently, during some of my filming for my upcoming documentary, 10,000 men, (you can see a teaser at http://www.10KMen.com) I went back to my worst nightmare. I went back to Boston, the stomping grounds of the pimp who had held me captive for two years, and where I had been arrested, forced to work the streets and escorting services, and was under extreme mental and physical stress.

This trip caused me to realize how much work I still needed to get beyond what I have been through. Here I thought I was down to a 1 on the ladder, when really I am still at a 5. I was completely upset and angered by this. I felt like I was supposed to be better than this, I was supposed to be over this.

I realize now that I need more work on this. I need more therapy, I need to talk about it more, but not desensitizing myself from it, as I do when I tell my story to others. I’m really not sure now how I will ever be able to get over it. But I do know, that I have been living through it and I have been doing my best to make good out of what I have, with my family, my job, and life in general. So, I can still make it. But damn, it’s been over 20 years…WTF!

“Do I have Prostitute Written on my Forehead?”

After facilitating the first session of a new domestic sex trafficking support group, I was asked this question by one of the young members, 21 years of age. “Do I have prostitute written on my forehead? Why do people come up to me and offer me money for sex? I’m not dressed slutty! I don’t get it!” Truthfully, I was not sure how to answer this. I have felt this and the frustration is brings with it before, when I was younger and first getting back on my feet and out of the lifestyle.  I would get pissed at everyone and blame anyone and everyone but, looking back, I think I had put MYSELF in those situations without being able to recognize it. Example, when I got out of the lifestyle, I went directly into an abusive relationship. I was trying so hard to go the straight and narrow, but still manager to get into ANOTHER bad situation and I could not understand how or why. I think it’s because my mind-state had yet to change. I can see that now, but when I was in it, I was completely blind to it. It took me about a year and a half to be on my own, without a boyfriend, to discover what I REALLY wanted! I don’t have people offering me money for sex but I have felt like people could somehow see what I had done and were able to almost sniff it out. My answer for now is it is the way you carry yourself! If you present yourself as a queen, you will be a queen. If you present yourself as an addict, you will be an addict, etc. When I’m stopped looking for it, it stopped looking for me!!! Make sense?

Boys Will be Boys?

I have about two weeks before my son will be born and truthfully, I’m just as worried about my daughter growing up understanding moral values as I am my son. In these days where boys/men are constantly seeing girls/women as sex symbols, how can we make sure we raise them to understand right from wrong? It worries me that my son may be pressured into sex or sexual acts too early, or that he will see his friends or friends’ parents treating girls/women wrongly, or that he will see trafficking going on and not take action! Things I can and will do to stop these things: A.  Show him how girls/women are treated both by example and through conversation, as well as the negative/wrong actions, B.  answer any/all questions he has regarding sex/sexual acts (can also be answered by his father), C.  make sure he is aware of trafficking, what it is, and what to do if he sees it.  Are these practices that all people are taking with their boys? I can’t be so sure! I think society has upped the anty with the way they raise girls, however, we are still way behind in regards to talking with our young ladies about these issues. So how can we possibly think our boys will be prepared! I know that my efforts will be given, and children have to have space to make mistakes, but my son will know and be able to talk freely regarding these topics to assist him in hopefully making the right decisions. I only hope that more people will take these actions into consideration, as well as add to them! Any other suggestions?

TRUST and/or LUST

What does TRUST mean to you? How many people in your life have you actually TRUSTed, under your own definition? Truthfully, if this was about 5 years ago, I would say that I TRUSTed no one; not my family, not my so-called friends, no one! How could I? I was raped at the age of 12 by a so-called boyfriend and ever since then, it was very hard for me to TRUST anyone. I was constantly betrayed by those close to me; And if I wasn’t actually betrayed by them, I at least felt betrayed. TRUST did not come easy! After my trafficking experience, I had lost all TRUST for humankind. I didn’t think there was anyone is this world worth TRUSTing. But the crazy thing is, I did have LUST. What I thought was love, was a negative mix of abuse, sex, and attention for all the wrong reasons, the closest thing to LUST I had. Throughout my life, while I was not willing to TRUST, I was willing to give “love or LUST,” whether it be physically or mentally to people, mostly men that I hardly knew and who hardly treated me with one ounce of respect.  Why was I able to have LUST, when TRUST was so far from my grasp? I would suggest it was because I had given up hope on TRUST and LUST was easy for me. I did not have to feel to have LUST, plus it had an extra benefit; ATTENTION. But yet, there had to be some TRUST to have the feelings of LUST. At least, sometimes I feel that way. All in all, my whole life story would have been different had I have had more TRUST and less LUST. This LUST is a major issue; I feel like this is part of the problem of young girls and their attention-seeking clothing, attitudes, behavior, etc. I feel like we need to address this TRUST issue. It may help us control this problem of LUST, where are young men/women are looking for love in all the wrong places and confusing love with LUST. So, what do you think? Do you need TRUST to have LUST?