When I became aware of the atrocities that occurred at the idyllic school I chose for my children, my heart could have burst and broke in two. The school children, we as parents and guardian to, failed them.
I could say perhaps we had blinkers on not wanting to see or was it ignorance. The children seemed to be happy and go lucky, normal schoolyard bickering. Little did we know the underbelly and the sordid shameful harmful violent secrets that were occurring. And yet.... I was aware of a very badly behaved group of boys who made derogatory comments and sexist remarks, who also treated me with contempt when I tried to discipline them, when I was a relieving teacher.
The schoolyard was not given proper surveillance.
My guilt in not investigating more is with me, my ignorance also. It was not till later did I learn of sexual abuse and it's hidden trauma, as well as how to look for the cues and identify it in children.
If I had known, my anger would not have abated for those precious children I adored. I would want to gather those beautiful children in my arms and sooth and protect and make their childhood play safe.
I would have wanted to create a safe place to express their hurt and pain.
I have so much admiration for the women who are supporting and helping each other through their healing, exposing the suppressed pain and hurt of what they witnessed or directly experienced.
My love can not wash it away, but I am with you all in spirit and believe so much in the tenacity of the fragile beautiful spirit of those who maintain integrity, respect, truth and love.
My question to myself as a parent and a teacher is, Did I pave the the way for our children to tell us of their fears and hurts. Did I encourage enough assertiveness? Did I listen enough?
This is now my vocation in life.