My journey to healing started at the age of 32, its been an on-going path to healing that has so far taken me 9 years (I am 41 now) – 9 difficult years, 9 uplifting years, 9 years filled with hope, faith and endless love… 9 years of reminding myself daily that I am worthy.
I am not going to go into too much detail because I don’t want my testimony to come across as voyeuristic or cause too many triggers for any other people that have or are going through any of what I did.
My story started at birth, when I was sold to a human trafficking group for, in later years, to be part of child pornography, torture and abuse.
At the age of 6, I was told that little girls who misbehaved deserved to be punished. My dad raped and abused me for the first time and then went on to auction my broken and battered body off to the highest bidder(s) as they pleased all for the sake of making and producing pornography. I was told that what was happening to me was ‘right’. I learned to do what I was told and never to argue. And I never told a single soul what was happening to me. This continued on for years. Throughout my entire childhood up to the age of 32 I did not know the difference between right and wrong.
Later on when I turned 27, I was sold into an arranged marriage. It was ‘normal’ for me to sit with my husband and watch pornography and page through magazines together in order to see what fantasy he would like to experience. Unfortunately I never realized that I was unintentionally promoting the use and production of pornography every time we went and bought another dvd or watched online, and that more people that was in the same situation as me growing up would have to go through what I did.
At the age of 32, I managed to break free from the life I was in. It was not easy, and probably the most frightening thing I ever did up to that point in my life. I was constantly looking over my shoulder for something bad to happen to me.
Eventually, with the help of a friend, I started counseling with Marie Anne. I remember our first session like it was yesterday where she asked me if I knew that I am worthy… To be honest, I did not know what that meant. At the time, I literally couldn’t look at myself in the mirror from all the shame, and here was this beautiful lady telling me I am worthy. Eventually after a while I started believing in myself and realized that no person can define who you are as a person. No person has the right to control you, or to use their authority over you to do bad things to you.
People that create and produce pornography have such control over the people they use to make the films that the men and women are either too afraid to speak up about what is happening to them or they, like me, were raised to believe that their actions were the correct way of life.
I was a broken butterfly.. For the better part of my life I was stuck in a cocoon of control, abuse, torture, trauma, lies, shame and deceit – to name but a few – but 9 years ago my cocoon started opening.. when I started to believe that I am worthy. And that being worthy meant that I could ask for help and not have to live in shame or fear for the rest of my life. Yes, my wings might have a few frayed edges on the sides, but it is what makes me worthy to be loved, to be respected, to have hope and to be worthy above all else to be a daughter of God. He only sees the good in us, the beauty within and He washes away all of our shame.
I truly hope my short testimony will give whomever may read this hope, and faith that no matter what you have been through or might be going through that life can be beautiful, it may not be easy but you are strong enough to receive help and to prosper into living the beautiful life that God has always had in mind for you.