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We have been PROGRAMMED!

I have been avoiding the news like the plague. The Jian Ghomeshi trial that is going on shows how little has changed in the past 40 years when it comes to sexual assult cases. The women need to be virgin-like or they get ripped to shreds on the stand.

Poking holes in the women's testimonies because it was a long time ago has been talked and bandied about by his lawyer. The news feeds have also been talking about why did they wait so long to bring this to the light.

We all know that deep down that tearing these women down isn't right, but we have been programmed. Women have been programmed to equate a male hurting us with his holding affection for us.

I had long hair like the girl in the picture and had the boy behind me constantly pull it. Today it's called bullying, but when I was growing up my mother told me "that is just his way of telling you that he likes you!"

I am sure that there are many other women out there that were told the same thing. Here in lies the dilema that we are faced with. We have accepted that a boy hurting a girl is acceptable behaviour. It has been accepted by our society as terms of endearment for centuries.

I know of the pain these women have been feeling. I was date raped in high school and then raped at a party while in college. I never wanted anyone to know about these events. I never told anyone, not even my parents because I can remember my Dad commenting that on a public case once, "it must have been because of what she was wearing". Again, programming. It was the woman's fault becasue if she was dressed like a nun, she wouldn't have been hurt.

A friend of mine was attacked on her University campus over 40 years ago and brought her attacker to the college police. She was literally dragged through the courts and felt more abused by the end of it. I can remember her telling me "it's just not worth the extra pain you go through". Her words rung in my ears for years.

I finally did tell the police, but only after I was involved in such serious domestic violence that my children heard the abuse. The fourth time it happened to me and I finally found my courage.

Despite what the press and news reports are saying, we should be applauding these women for being brave enough to literally be willing to be judged in public.

All the abuse I experienced affected my entire life. In so many ways I have lost count. Now, after many years of healing I am able to help others overcome their pain and it begins by being heard. It needs to end with:

  1. reforming the legal system to the victims are not further victimized and

  2. changing the programming!

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