Posted by: Louise | June 24, 2010


Not so very long ago, a couple of years, I was in therapy. I still am, but it was a specific session. My therapist was asking me to imagine the man who had molested me was in the room and she was encouraging me to talk to him, to tell him what I thought of him. She moved her chair closer to me. I know her intention was to make me feel safer, protected from this man. What I felt was sheer terror, a physical, skin crawling terror. I wanted to climb backwards into my seat and curl up into a tiny ball, as far from her physical presence as I could.

It wan’t her I was scared of. Somehow, her moving towards me when I was feeling vulnerable, had unearthed a feeling that I had buried deep deep down in the depths of time and life. I recognised that feeling instantly. This was exactly how I felt all those years ago.

This was exactly the fear, the physical, skin crawling terror I had felt when that man had goaded and charmed me out of my clothes. I couldn’t acknowledge it then. I couldn’t understand what was happening. This was not my life. This wasn’t fun. This wasn’t helping my parents. This wasn’t playing with my brothers. This wasn’t playing with my friends. Where were my parents? This man was supposed to be minding me. This did not feel safe or right or nice or…….. my NO was trampled on, laughed at, ignored and I was terrified, but ‘terrified’ would not help me in that place so it was left outside. And gradually the terror gathered dust and was forgotten and became buried, until that day…..

Those feelings do not go away. The huge ones. The ones that overwhelm us. I know that now. We bury them, but they are still there…..waiting for their day. Waiting to be let out.

At the beginning of May we went away for the bank holiday weekend. We rented a gorgeous cottage, on the sea front, our own private beach. It was a great weekend. My brothers were around with their partners. Cousins had sleepovers in our cottage by the sea. We went for long walks, flew kites and had barbeques. It was a soul restoring weekend.

Our cottage was such a find, we decided immediately that we would book it again for the same time next year. We didn’t want to risk a whole season of holiday makers experiencing it before we made our booking. That was eight weeks ago. Finally late last night I wrote the e-mail requesting the booking.

Today there was a reply. It came from the husband of the woman I had dealt with, the vibrant, teeming-with-life-and-plans woman I had dealt with. My wife died tragically on May 12th. Only one week after our visit, she was gone – the day after Laura’s birth/death.I was caught off guard. My tears were unstoppable.

I had spoken to her twice. I’d told her she had a beautiful house, but the tap in the kitchen had fallen off and I’d told her that their dog was chewing the kids toys and eating food off the BBQ. It was not her loss I was crying about.

It was the shock. I’m sorry there is no heartbeat. The suddenness of death. Laura wasn’t meant to die. Some surgery – Yes. We were going to deal with that when the time came, but death – NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. My NO was trampled on, ignored…… I could feel this man’s shock. His wife was only a few years older than me. She wasn’t meant to die. I could feel my shock. I could feel it reverberating through my body all over again.

Some feelings don’t ever go away. We just bury them…..



  1. Life, it’s just so unforgiving and cruel and happens in a blip. Now you’re here, and now you’re gone.

    I’m sorry, Louise, so very, very sorry, for your loss, for your hurt, for being molested and hurt by the man you describe who should have cared for you.
    I’m sorry for the man who lost his wife. I’m sorry for all this fragility and hurt we experience instead of being carefree and childishly, endlessly happy, for being hurt and it wasn’t our fault and we didn’t know about.

    I’m so sorry.
    I send you lot’s of love


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