Education is prevention…

…and prevention is protection.

Now-a-days, we hear a lot about violence. Violence at home, bullying at school, harassment at work or on the street. Violence is everywhere. It does not define our societies or who we are but it plays an important role in our evolution and how we decide to define ourselves.

In the past couple of years, the French government put into place important measures to fight all types of violence, creating adds to show its impact on peoples lives, opening more helplines, dedicated centres to welcome the victims, creating new jobs and training programs. Many well-known artists took it over and started campaigns around the country and in the world.

Still, I think something is missing in order, if not to eradicate violence completely, at least to change the vision of men and women on the subject and prevent violence from spreading even more. Before discussing the impact of violence, people first have to be educated on what violence is, how to spot it and how to protect themselves from it. MORE on WMB

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What would you have done?

If you mum would have come to you saying

“your dad better not find you there reading a book, when he comes home”

Would you have just said “ok”?

Would you have just asked “why? what’s wrong with reading a book”?

Would you have said “I don’t agree with this. What’s his problem? I can’t do what I want in my own home”?

Would you have said “no more of this bullshit. A man will never ever say to me what I should or should not do”?

Or would you have said “this is not my battle”?

****

If you mum had started crying and talking once again about her life, abused childhood, about her messed up married life, about how she is trying everything but no one sees it

Would you have taken her in your arms and say you’re sorry for creating such a mess around a single book?

Would you have told her “maybe you should leave dad”?

Would you have said “please stop with your childhood memories. I am fed up. I can’t take this anymore. We’ve been living with all this craziness since we’re kids. I can’t hear about it anymore”?

Would you have just stayed there and listen. And think “when all this will stop”?

What would you have done?

Would you have felt helpless?

Would you have asked yourself “how to set boundaries with all this mess coming around again and again and again”?

Do you know how to set boundaries, how to deal with this, without hurting yourself?

We are the change

But how to change? Where to start?

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For Freedom!

Freedom is a basic right

In France, Freedom of speech is an essential right

Yesterday at 11.30am

12 journalists were assassinated

Sketches v Kalashnikovs

They died for their ideas

Inside we cry

And the world cries with us

This should never happen

And it keeps happening

Blood stains on the walls

We will not let Freedom die

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Next time, I’ll chose love

First thing I experienced when meeting him is: FEAR

Fear of not being right

Fear of not being good enough

Fear of the unknown

Fear of not being as he wanted me to be

For 4 years, fear never left me

Fear of his silences

Fear of his presence

Fear of his absence

Fear of his words

Fear of his behavior

Fear of his violence

I say yes to marriage out of: FEAR

Fear of saying NO to him

Fear of slamming doors

Fear of funny faces

Fear of time and people met and phone calls done

Fear of being late

Fear of my words

Fear of my habits

Fear of my ideas and dreams

Fear of not saying the right thing at the right time

Fear of not wearing the right dress

Fear of being full of fear

***

Nothing good comes out of fear

Next time,  I’ll choose LOVE!

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Source Pinterest

Taking Sides

Some days, we must take sides.

We have to fight for

Peace

Justice

Respect

Freedom

Love

We have to fight against

Violence

Terror

Abuse

Hatred

Injustice

 

And then some days

We face small, tiny life challenges

People disagreeing

People being rude

People chatting behind other’s back

Rumors

Personal issues

Should we take someone’s side?

Or stay neutral?

Should we say “yes” to one and “no” to the other?

Should we add to the gossip?

Or should we remain silent?

 

It’s THEIR issues.

As long as these issues don’t affect our humanity or the humanity of the people involved…

 

What should we do?

Is there anything to do?

Won’t it be easier to realize that all this mess is not worth it?

Won’t it be easier to try our best to see the strengths of that person, behind all her/his weaknesses?

 

Why are we so good at making our lives miserable, as if there was not enough pain and suffering in this world?

I wonder.

What shall we do, when we face people not liking each other?

What shall we do, when we don’t own the problem?

Where shall we stand, when we don’t wish to be involved, when nobody is right or wrong?

Where shall we stand, when it’s all about the incompatibility of two characters?

I wonder.

 

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 Source

 

Can’t force a man to be…

You can’t force a man to be anything he does not want to be. You can’t force a woman either.

Change comes from WITHIN.

It you want to be that special person, you’ll do anything to be this person. You’ll be the change. You won’t beg anybody to change so it fits your world. At the end of the day it does not work. We are the only actors of our life.

You can’t force a man to be a good friend or a good husband. You can’t ask him to do this or that. If he does not want to do it, he won’t do it. And if he does it, he will be resentful towards you for having been forced into doing it.

You can’t force a man into being someone he is not. You won’t change him. Come on, you know it by heart and still you hope, you hope he might be different cause of you. This does not work either. Some people don’t even see good people around them; they don’t understand the meaning of compromise or what’s in the word LOVE.

You can’t force a man to be a dad. Parents have rights. But they also have duties. You are not a dad because you have a child. You can be call dad when you do something for your child, when you love your child unconditionally, when you are ready to make efforts for him or her, when his interests come before your own little life, when you are able to let go of anger for his or her sake.

You can’t change someone, just because you wish that person to be acting like you do. You can’t let them see what they don’t want to see or listen to what you have to say, when they are not ready to open their ears.

You can’t ask them to make an effort when they don’t want to make any, when they don’t think it’s up to them to make any.

You have much power into your hands but this power can only help people who are ready to be helped, the ones who know that’s something is wrong, the ones who are ready to take the plunge for a better life, the ones who ask for help, the ones ready to change.

Each person is responsible for his / her own life.

Your duty is to preserve your life, not let people mold you or change you into somebody you’re not. Some might follow you, shine with you.

Others might avoid you, despise you. This is  THEIR problem. You can’t change the deal. You can’t change THEM.

The only thing you can do is CHANGE the way you are dealing with it and decide once and for all that you won’t step down, that you won’t let people walk over you anymore.

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Source – Pinterest

 

Under Infuence – No More

It’s horrible to think that you are fine, safe and suddenly find out that as long as a certain person is around you, you will never be safe, or fine.

I was under his influence for 4 years. He was directing my life, my thoughts, my habits, my choices, my taste…

I stopped seeing my friends, my family. I was isolated, frustrated, lost. I was surviving. I was walking on eggshells all the time, in case I would do or say something that would make him angry and silent for days.

I left, thinking I would be safe, thinking that he would stop having influence on me, thinking I was setting myself free.

I worked so hard to get stronger, to stop feeling guilty and to rebuild my life piece after piece.

But I forgot to say STOP.

He WON’T change.

I just need to know this by heart. I just need to integrate it fully, not just like this.

I am so sure he WON’T change. And still I have a tiny drop of hope in me…

I SHOULD STOP seeing him.

I SHOULD STOP the mediation process. It does not bring us anywhere.

It’s all about HIM, HIS needs, HIS wishes.

He wants. He needs. He says “you must”, “you have to”.

Listening to him is like being in a rollercoaster. At the end of the talk, you just want to hide and cry, you don’t know any more what’s ok, what’s not, what you want to say, what you want at all. You say YES when you think NO. You just want it to be over.

Leaving a violent relationship is tough. And the best thing to do is closing the doors, not letting the violent person enter your new world, your new life.

It’s OVER. Over for your sanity. Over for self-respect. Over, because if you are nice just one second, the abusive ex will know it and will push where it hurts, will turn your world upside down, will break you.

I did not leave to give him another chance to break me. I should be stronger. I should cut all ties with him and never let him approach me again, NEVER EVER.

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Sympathy for the evil

I did not make any mistake in the title…I won’t talk to you about the Rolling Stones! I’ll talk to you about a book I just finished reading and that moved me a lot.

I knew Jodi Picoult. Who does not know Jodi Picoult anyway?

I read “my sister’s keeper” and I cried. I did cry a lot. I did not want to feel that way again, powerless.

But when I checked at Nineteen Minutes on Kim’s blog, I decided to give it a chance.

nineteen-minutes

So here I was, reading a story about a young guy, Peter, who went to school one day and killed 10 people and let many others on the edge.

This is tough. I mean who could even think to have sympathy for this kind of person, capable of such violence. Killing people does not solve any issue. We can’t tolerate it.

But then Jodi Picoult takes us back in time, looking at the life of this young guy, of his friend Josie, who took another road, who tried to belong, who would do anything to fit in. Peter did not fit in. He was different. He was badly treated, bullied at school.

But I imagine what you’ll say to me:

How many of us have been bullied at school, and never turned violent?

How many of us suffered hardships, without turning the gun towards our abusers? 

Violence can’t be accepted.

Thought, as you are moving into the book, into the shattered life of so many people, you do remember that the shooter is the son of somebody, the son of a man and a woman who did their best to raise their son to be a good citizen. You do remember that you don’t always have the full picture to make up your mind. You do remember that it’s easy to say “I will never do this”, but that you don’t always have the chance to do something else.

There is no excuse for what Peter did. Behind his act, there are many questions which need to be asked and answered by society and families.

As I was turning the last pages, I was feeling some kind of sympathy for this guy. But if I had been on the jury to judge his case, I would still have sentenced him to life.

This story told me that sometime behind the bad actions, the violence, there are men and women waiting to tell their stories, waiting to be heard before it’s too late, waiting to be taken care of and helped.

Violence is not the solution.

We (Society, Family, Justice, Education…) are the solution.

There is nothing as « just a slap »

I was talking with a friend the other day, and she told me: “you know, he didn’t want to hurt her. It was just a slap”.

I CAN’T HEAR something like this and stay silent. When it has to do with violence, there is no such thing as “just a”.

No “just a threat”. No “just a punch”. No “just a bad word”.

If we allow this into our life, we allow violence in it too. By allowing violence, we become part of the issue; we become abusers, without even noticing it.

I am astonished to hear a woman say “it’s just a slap”, like “that’s ok, it’s nothing bad after all.”

NO.

How can we even tolerate it?

How is this possible?

How is it even possible that today a man could say “they call this rape, come on, look at her, she was just asking for it”?

I wanted to throw up my lunch. I had him in front of me and he made me sick.

We are living in a crazy society. We are moving backwards, while wonderful women are raising their voices to say “NO MORE”. Check this out – 8 Ways to Kick Domestic Violence Ass

NO MORE of this.

VIOLENCE IS NOT NORMAL.

It’s time for us to say STOP to it. Today. Right now. Right in front of these people who seem to see violence as natural, normal.

It’s not.

It never was.

It never will be.

And it should stop.

Death is just a breath away from us, if we do nothing, if we keep accepting intolerable things.

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ps – This resumes so well my past relationship and my mariage

Good wife

These are the two words I was always wishing to get. They were like the most precious thing of my married life.

I used to rush home after work to start cooking the diner, before my ex-husband came home. I didn’t want him to tell me once again that I was not cooking right. Cooking for him became my worst nightmare. Cooking right. Cooking, so he would eat and not ask for something else, at the middle of the night.

It it wasn’t right, he wasn’t going to eat it. He was going to tell me: “I showed you twice. If you can’t get it right, it’s your problem”.

But when it was good, he would say “good wife”. And it felt good. I could breath again. He would not leave me. He would not go out and search for a new wife.

It was not only for cooking. It was for going out, dressing up, cleaning the house or ironing his shirts. It was for learning arabic words and acting nice with his friends.

Me: “the dusk keep coming back quickly here.”

Him: “it’s because you don’t know how to clean well.”

Me: “I am going out with friends for a coffe.”

Him: “Where? What time? Which friend? A boy? A friend I know?”

Him: “Did you clean this shirt?”

Me: “I did.”

Him: “Really? Look it’s dirty. Give me another one and next time look at it twice before putting it in the wardrobe.”

Me: “Why do you always make me feel useless?”

Him: “I tell you all this for your own good. Cause I know better than you.”

Moments of life. GOOD WIFE. OR NOT.

Most of the time I was not. And then some days I was, the days I did clean well and cook well, the days I stayed at home and wait for him to come back, the days I did not raise my voice or don’t argue with him, the days I welcome his friends nicely (but never with a big smile, cause it was not good for a wife to smile too much).

In the last months of our marriage, I was not Marie anymore. He was calling me “my wife” all the time, when asking me something or telling me again that “no man would ever love me like he did”. I was His Wife. His Good Wife some days. And His Bad Wife when I would not fit in the boxes he created.

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