Kathleen A. Sullivan:
I hope that
what you find here will aid you
Click on any link to go to its web page:
Daily Decisions: Fear or courage; denial or truth?
As you look at this website, you may wonder why I choose to "out" myself and my history. My answer to you is this: as long as I remain silent, I will stay in the role of victim. And remarkably, each time I publicly share my history, I feel stronger and more free!
It's also easier for me to go public, than it might be for some survivors, because I have strong support from a number of wonderful people - especially my husband. (A retired Army sergeant major, he laughs at fear and encourages me to do likewise.)
Still, going public about the kinds of experiences I've survived has its risks. I've already suffered losses as a direct consequence. Sometimes I start to think I'd be safer crawling into my little imaginary hole and pulling the lid in after me...
Whenever I feel that way, I remember the other victims and survivors of forced mind control, criminalized ritual abuse, torture, organized pedophilia, and more who are still out there, some of them still unheard. Some of them still in crisis, still in unbearable pain, still imprisoned, still in fear for their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Knowing that they're out there gives me the incentive to keep speaking, to keep telling what has been done to us.
If I could share one precious gift with you, one "pearl of wisdom" that I believe I've earned as a survivor of decades of brutality and terror, my gift to you would be this thought:
I know this is true because more than three decades, I hid and dissociated and denied and isolated and lied to myself. I preferred denial over the truth. I was a coward. I hid from harsh realities. I blanked them out; I made them "not exist." Hiding from reality seemed easier than fighting to free myself from the dark world that I'd secretly been trapped in since birth. I was severely dissociated, believing that the truth wasn't the truth, that my hidden problems didn't exist, that I wasn't in constant danger, that some of my mortal enemies were my best friends, that I didn't have problems with amnesia, that I didn't do the bizarre things that others accused me of! They were lying!
Was my cowardice wrong or immoral? Was my denial? Of course not! These can be handy survival skills. They can keep us alive! If we were suddenly surrounded by mortal enemies with no way of escape, we might feel safer if we can convince them that we love or admire them, while convincing ourselves that they are our friends. Feeling safe is vastly preferable to feeling terror. Of course, denial ("this isn't happening; it's just a bad dream, I'll wake up soon") can also protect us from that terror.
Unfortunately, when some victims of organized criminal groups begin to break free, they may continue - as I did for years - to dissociate and go in and out of denial like a yo-yo. Like the proverbial ostrich that sticks its head in the sand to feel safer, some survivors may even convince themselves that staying in denial will protect them from pain. In reality, unless the perpetrators are no longer a threat to these survivors, their denial can actually make them more vulnerable!
Very few people are willing to live in truth all the time. Human nature, negative environmental and social conditions, daily stressors, and even the daily newspaper make it easy for us to want to hide from harsh and unpleasant realities. It's fairly normal for a person to say, upon learning of atrocities committed against other humans, "That's their problem; it doesn't affect me." Or as my husband and his fellow troops used to say in Vietnam, "Don't mean nothing." It's easier and infinitely more comfortable to bury one's mind in the proverbial sand of: "It doesn't exist; it's not a part of my world; I'm not going to think about it."
It takes a brave and selfless person to make the opposite choice: "If I stay away from this knowledge, if I pretend this situation doesn't exist, then I will feel better. Nonetheless, I choose to learn more about it. I know that what I learn may distress me. It may make me miserable. Still, I'd rather know the truth."
Living a life of courage, seeking truth in its purest form - no matter how painful, frightening, or ugly the truth may be - is certainly not an easy path to take. It can be especially difficult for anyone who has lived in fear all of his or her life. Still, I've come to the conclusion that choosing courage over fear and truth over denial, on a daily basis, may be the most noble life-path of all.
More important, I believe that this is how we can live in real freedom - regardless of the conditions of the world around us. If we are free on the inside where it counts the most, we are free indeed.
Mr. Light &
South County Christian
Counseling Center (SCCCC)
My opinions and beliefs that I share in this website are mine alone. They do not represent the opinions or beliefs of my publisher, DandelionBooks; the North American Freedom Foundation (NAFF); or any professional organization that I may be connected to.
Survivors of criminally perpetrated traumas are welcome to contact the organizations listed on the right side of this page, to obtain support and recovery information.
If you have questions about this website, or if you would like to discuss a possible interview, you can E-mail me at KathleenASullivan@comcast.net