For Mental Health Awareness Week: Tara



Help Me, Don’t Put Your Hands on Me

Ashamed to let my GP touch me
because she knows ‘where I’ve been’
She’d be repulsed at my violated body
And inside I want to scream

I wear baggy clothes, I’m contaminated
And I just want to cover up
Not just my body but my feelings
The vessel that no one can touch

The frustrated screams, shut them down
Suppress them, do anything to contain and keep them in
Even if you articulate who would care
The tantrum is a hassle, a child crying within

If I cry who comes to soothe me
Comfort me and smother me with love
Asking too much wanting cuddles
Instead I disconnect and fly up above

The filthy, naughty little body
learning to soothe, you only have yourself
My soul is just an instrument
There for anyone but this self

But I developed an imagination
Had hopes, desires and dreams
My achievements were no thanks to you
And nothing was as it seemed




Tara writes:

My feelings were never validated, and mould grows when it is left.

I have written a collection of poems about my life and the way that abuse can spread, like mildew, into every aspect of it. Abuse leaked into adulthood without having help to categorise what really happened. How could I know that it was abuse? Manipulation aside, I was pre – verbal. I hope these excruciatingly honest thoughts can raise awareness that rape is not about the physical aspect of sex, but about betrayal and what abuse of power can do to a person at their core. Everybody’s experience is different of course, but child abuse made me believe that I was bad, profoundly damaged and not worthy of love.

You can believe the damage was there before the abuse (particularly if you don’t remember a before) and that’s why you were singled out. This is not true of course. What remains is a sense in the pit of your stomach that somehow you are outside society and that you are not enough.

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