Category Di’s Words of Wisdom

Domestic Violence The Elephant In The Room

 

Are You Safe? Are You Immune? Are You Aware?

  • Domestic violence is that ‘silent thing’ that happens to other people –  right?
  • It is nothing to do with us – right?
  • Let’s pretend it didn’t happen – right?

Noooooooooooooooooooooooo! It is the silent stalker (it is there watching and waiting) or it is the elephant in the room (we know it is there but no one is talking about it)?

 

domestic violence, confidnece, self esteem, anxiety

 

 

It is gratifying that the Australian of the Year for 2015 was awarded to Rosie Batty. This amazing woman rose above her personal tragedy and the great loss of her 11-year-old-son, Luke, who was murdered by his father on a cricket oval in February last year.

Rosie found her voice as a result of going through her experiences.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-01-25/rosie-batty-named-australian-of-the-year-2015/6045290

There are enormous amounts of $$$$$ spent on education. mass media and yet this is not an uncommon story. .. domestic violence is on the increase not decrease.

A few facts

 

 Fear, lack of confidence, domestic violence, anxiety scared

 

  • Prevention starts with awareness and taking action.
  • Domestic violence happens – on your doorstep, your neighbourhood, your community, your State and your Country.
  • It covers all socio economic groups – it is not limited to the lower income groups.
  • It is secrecy and fear that allow it to flourish. DV is all always about power.
  • One in three girls are sexually abused – 90% do not report the above.
  • Women killed by violence in Australia in 2014 – 81.

Why am I passionate on the topic – I am a survivor of domestic violence as was my Mum. In the 40′s and 50′s my Mum had no voice, she had no where to go and the law sent abused women home to their husbands. Mum had no voice.

For me in the 60′s, I chose silence as guilt, shame and fear overwhelmed me following a teenage pack rape. My voice was silenced. I buried it all and got on with life. Only to find it bubbled up later in life when I was going through huge stress.

Now it is 2015…. there are endless programs, support groups and educational material available. The law listens, women today have a voice. Why, why, why is it that this senseless behaviour perpetrated and thriving  throughout in our society?

There are endless scenarios of the ‘why’s’ and ‘where-fore’s’ of why it happens, why women stay, why women go. We are going round in circles and it is continuing.

Obviously the educational process is not working, the media campaigns are not working, those caught in the DV cycle are not hearing.

 What can we do?

 

Confidence, domestic violence

 

There is no simple answer… here are a  couple of suggestions for a starting point that anyone can take.

  •  Realise we need to see it over and over… more than once. See and hear what is happening…
  • Public awareness – - high profile awards help to bring the matter to our attention. Support organisations that support those affected by DV e.g. Bravehearts.
  • Speaking out where you can – think about where your voice could make the difference. Take some action, any action no matter how small. You have a voice.
  • Being there for someone affected by DV – listening and being there, talking, allowing them to talk, Maybe helping them create an exit plan. Support them as they get professional help.
  • Social media – no holes barred here. Pop it up and it is out there.. the good bad and the ugly. And news spreads like wild fire.

In life we all need to take personal responsibility for our thoughts, our actions and our lives. All the education and support in the world  won’t help without action by those affected.

We live in a wonderful country, we have so much to give and we have so much to live for.

I would love you all to be safe, be aware and be compassionate AND address that elephant in the room.

Confidence, standing together, facing fears

It is wonderful to hear your comments especially on a serious issue that affects so many in out society. What are your thoughts?

#domesticviolence #violenceagainstwomen

 

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5 Confidence Tips from My Lips

 

Don’t we all love tips and hints… something to add to our day, something to make us smile or that extra something that we can add to our ”amazing women’s life kit’. Yes you are already an amazing and multi-talented woman.

Often what we read is a reminder.. seeing it again re-enforces, reminds and re-programs us to move forward. It supports, grows and enhances our confidence. 

OK let’s go!

 

Confidence, tips, self esteem, confident women

 

 

1. HAVING A BAD DAY…THIS TOO SHALL PASS

 It is a fact of life that when something goes wrong then several things go wrong – next thing we find ourselves catapulting down the rabbit hole. yes we are likely drawing that very thing we say we don’t want by our thoughts words and actions.

Taking a different perspective, the good news is this too shall pass. This also stand true for fabulous days…this too shall pass.

                                                ACTION TIP - Try aiming for a balance.

 2. IT”S OK IF YOUR DUCKS ARE NOT ALL IN A ROW 

Have you ever organised what you thought was everything to the ‘enth degree’ , then found the ONE minuscule thing you didn’t consider happened?

The unexpected will pop up – the ‘thing’ and the timing and the unforeseen. That is life.. avoid slipping into the ‘I can’t do anything right’ mode.

 ACTION TIP. Stop, breathe, re-assess and move forward.

 3.  SOMETIMES WE NEED TO SEE THINGS MORE THAN ONCE 

When we are learning new things it is easy to say ‘I am a slow learner’ (I believe those words have escaped my lips once or twice).

Repeating what you have learned is an excellent way to re-enforce the lesson. Or for you it may be taking notes to refer to if you don’t get to put what you learned into practice for a while.

It is OK to see, hear and do things more than once before they become a habit. Yes doing the same thing over and over makes it a habit.

ACTION TIP – Make it OK for you to see and hear things as many times as you need to.

 4. YOU CAN LAUGH EVEN AMONGST CHAOS 

One of the first things that disappears when life’s challenges overwhelm us is our ability to have fun and laugh.  Then when we do find ourselves having a chuckle we go into the ‘blame’ and ‘guilt’, ‘how could I laugh when my life is falling apart.

Even in the worst of circumstances there is always something  that has the potential to make you smile, feel gratitude and enjoy a touch of nature.

 ACTION TIP –  Create that smile for a friend going through a challenge…it is a great starting point in changing your perspective in life.

 5. BE AUTHENTICALLY YOU 

 The old saying goes “Be you everyone else is taken’. So many try to be someone they are not, try to bluff it out by being someone different. Each of us is unique. No one does what you do in your way… don’t be afraid to stand out.

 ACTION TIP – Ask your self what makes you authentic.. embrace it, develop it and do more of it…

 

What prompted me to write this blog post? I am currently doing a 21 Day ‘visual challenge’ as in creating an image a day. All 5 points have been relevant in my life this week… 

 

Now…  give yourself a huge hug and ask yourself a wonderful supportive open question for example…

  •   What else is possible?
  • Who am I today and what grand and glorious adventures will I have?
  • What is one small thing I can do today to enhance my life?

I hope these tips have given you a point to ponder… if you are feeling overwhelmed contact me through my website I’ll take away your overwhelm   so you can focus on attracting the next best thing into your life.

 

 

 

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Speaking up and speaking out…just for you!

 

Are you a woman who wants to stand up with confidence and share your message?  Is something holding you back?

confident women, oveecoming nerves, scared to speak out

I have been there… sweaty palms, what of they think I am silly, dry mouth, nervous twitters in the tummy. you stand then forget what you meant to say…

I wanted to do it…it wasn’t my fault. But it was what I was manifesting and attracting into my life.

Until I learned the secrets of how to speak with confidence

Until I evolved

Until I got a plan

Until I unashamedly claimed my worth and created  a way to speaking confidently in my feminine energy.

 

confidence self worth self belief

If this sounds like you…and part of your plan for 2015 is learning to speak with confidence this program gives you insights and tips on ‘how to.

Commencing 22nd January contact  Di at http://diriddell.com/speakers-first-workshop/ ‎ or di@diriddell.com on 0409 638 248.

 

 

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Reflecting on 2014…and it was always than I thought!

 

TRefelcting confidence, sel esteem, confidence confident women

 

It is that time of the year when you think about things like…

  • Where did the year go?
  • What did I achieve?
  • What could I have done better?

And what better way for me to do that than to make a cuppa and take a stroll  through my diary and see exactly what happened. If you are anything like me you think you know, you are sure you know…then you discover there are a lot of things you had forgotten about.

Did you find your reflections static like the pond?

Confidence self esteem confident women womenbeyond50

Or were they fast moving…like a river?

Confidence self esteem life style

 

I kept thinking I had not done much in the early part of the year – not correct.

I kept thinking little had been achieved…not correct.

I kept thinking I could have fitted more in…not correct.

I had re-written what I thought I had not done… please don’t let anyone else (including your mind) write your story..

 

confidence self esteem self worth self belief confident women

 

Since childhood and living with a violent alcoholic father doing, doing and doing, being task orientated and doing things before being asked was my life. I went nursing and it was more of the same. I took on four teens when I married at the ripe age of 24 and  I didn’t have time to think I just did it. And so life progressed.

It took me years to relax in any shape or form.  Sitting still or stopping was a sign of slackness or being lazy. Even on holidays it was go, go, go. I must have driven my husband mad, however he graciously went along with me. Ok sometimes he grumbled but he did it anyway.

Yesterday… I had coffee with my beautiful girlfriend Denise and we were talking about relationships, another form of reflecting. I was saying I did not want someone to ‘be responsible’ for me… It was almost like a shield I was holding up.  She said ‘Di you have been responsible for yourself and making your own decisions since you were 15′ (yep that coincides with the teenage rape).  You don’t need anyone to be responsible for you.

I spent a large slice of my life thinking I was a ‘whimp’. It has only been in these latter years that I have reflected not just on a year but on a lifetime and realised what strength, what resilience and yes even confidence I had. There are times when the positives just simple get buried in everyday life. The challenges ranging from the miniscule to the monumental. I simply did what needed to be done.

Ask yourself…Who do you see when you look in the mirror

confidence reality self esteem self worth confident women confidence beyond 50

 

Now I find I am still asking those questions…just in case I have slipped up… and have had the temerity to do less. True I am not as active as I was at 25, and now at 60 + postage and handling…I still do it, it just takes me a little longer.

So as I reflect back on my year I am pleasantly surprised and pleased with what I did achieve and  that has given me the motivation to spring into 2015.

confidence self worth self belief confident women confidencebeyond50

I look back and see me speaking, being MC, facilitating small workshops, networking , being involved in self development activities, writing and yes blogging. It has been such fun learning more about creating images and using power point effectively. On a personal level there has been travelling, reading and meeting a lovely man, being Grannie Di and even making self care a priority.

It has been an amazing year littered with highs and a few lows, lots of laughs, friendships renewed and started. The odd challenge kept me on my toes and I can still laugh, oohh how a sense of humour helps. Maybe I had the odd wine along the way… and I may or may not have a tiny tattoo in an unobtrusive place!

I am asking me as I reflect…Am I a real woman?

confident self esteem self worth self belief confidencebeyond50

 

As you read maybe you are reflecting on your year. Maybe you will find you to have achieved far more than you thought.  I would love to hear how your year went. Please do comment and share.

What are my plans? January will see me start on another round of ‘Speaker First Workshops’…if  you are nervous about speaking out, or full of ideas but unable to express them – then this may be just for you… giving you a kick start to the new year.

confidence se;f belief self esteem confidencebeyond50

 

Cheers Di xx

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Choosing Peace…

 

Peace is a word that is thrown around carelessly, blissfully and to many of us in jest. In fact we take it for granted.

We think of is as relaxation,  a state of being when we listen to music, meditate, journal, have a bubble bath by candlelight or sit quietly at the beach. Away from the hustle and bustle of life. Away from chaos and drama, and away from crowds and noise.

 

confident women women50+

 

Over the years I thought I could not have peace without all those things. Life experience and challenge taught me differently. When I was in the midst of drama growing up and through tumultuous teenage years I did not think peace was ever going to be possible for me. I was buried in ‘stuff’ for years and yes it was ‘rough stuff’.

What I did not realise is that it is possible to find a glimmer, a window of opportunity for peace in the midst of huge drama. it was a dear friend talking to me in my husbands final days about hope, peace, that life will go on, it will be good again. Right then I could not see it and I was a long way from peaceful.

 

confident women

 

When I reflect back now I was finding that pocket of peace when I took my patchwork to sit by Les’ bedside, I just did not recognise or acknowledge it.  It came when friends came to take me out for lunch when I was sitting for days on end. It came as messages, it came in nature as I stood many times watching a sunrise or seeing a rainbow. They were moments of peace… I was blind to them.

 

peace calm confident confident women

 

Today I realise peace dances in the heart and soul of everyone if and when we allow it. Today I do find my peace in relaxation, listening to music, meditating, writing and journaling. Today I take pleasure in luxuriating in a bubble bath by candlelight or sitting quietly at the beach reading.

Peace can also be a contentment of the heart, when the monkeys in your head stop chattering, and you just be who you are.  Yes, peace does bring us all a little nearer.

 

peace calm confdience confident women

 

We have that choice in our country. How lucky are we?

I had occasion recently to reconsider my point of view. As one of the guest speakers at a Conference I shared the stage with Dr Eman Sharobeen 2014 Australia Day Ambassador, Director IWHS, CEO NESH Women’s Scheme Inc Statutory. Member Anti Discrimination Board NSW and Member of Domestic & Family Violence Council.

This amazing woman who has faced and risen above so many challenges devotes her life to the betterment of women.

When she talked about domestic violence and Government legislating for change it hit a nerve with me. Yes they can legislate… however legislation does not change community opinion, community attitudes or community behaviour.

To quote her words Thank’s change… but we need to educate the community and encourage them to act’.

We see shocking instances of domestic violence on a daily basis…in our own homes, our own community and our own country. The education currently in place is not working. The figures for DV are rising.

I don’t  have the answer…I am simply stating what I see and read… it saddens me greatly. I do believe awareness is the first step – personal and in the community.  Followed closely by forgiveness and kindness.

 

forgiveness peace calm confdience confident women

 

Then Dr Eman really hit home… she shared stories as she deals with women from child marriages (1 in 3 of them are under 15)  and the results of genital mutilation.

Then she switched to her message on peace…. again I quote… ‘To us it night be a walk on a deserted beach, a mountain stroll or the peaceful haven of a home where you are safe, loved and protected. For war torn countries or countries where women are not safe, peace is having a day where you were not abused, not had a gun thrust at you, or been caught in gunfire or discriminated against.’ 

Paints a different picture doesn’t it?

 What did I do?

  • I took my faltering confidence in both hands and faced my past.
  • The key for me was forgiveness and learning to life in kindness.
  • My life is beautiful today. Is it perfect? No! Am I a work in progress? Definitely!
  • It was indirectly how I got into speaking and coaching.

What would I like you to do? I would love you to:

  • Raise your awareness
  • Make any difference you can
  • Recognise the wonderful freedom we have in this country to enjoy peace in whatever form we wish.
  • To educate and support your children and grandchildren… to live that peace which you wish to see in the world.

peace, calm, confdience confident women

 

Let’s all choose to leave footprints of peace as we move through our beautiful world. How can it get better than that? What else is possible?

My message is delivered with confidence and I send much love, hugs peace and kindness to all. Di xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mellowing …Really…

 

How we mellow and the positives that come out of it has been rattling round in my mind for a while now so I thought I would share my thoughts.

When having a coffee after a meeting recently I uttered the words ‘I have mellowed’ … then I went on to reminisce about what a fire brand I was in my youth.

On the day I was basking in my quietness, wisdom and tolerance. Something that is often characteristic of maturity… friends gwaffing loudly at me as I talked…

 

Almost mellowed..she said confidently

 

Would you believe they were right…Well being mellow was put on hold as I became un-mellow about the grannies going to TAFE discussion. It got me going in less than a heartbeat.

It seems I still have a ways to go…

 

Mellowing confidently

Now exactly what does mellowing mean?

a. Soft, sweet, juicy, and full-flavoured because of ripeness: a mellow fruit.

b. Suggesting softness or sweetness as in a change of season

c. Rich and soft in quality: a mellow sound; a mellow wine.

d. Having the gentleness, wisdom, or tolerance often characteristic of maturity.

e. Relaxed and unhurried; easygoing: a mellow friend; a mellow conversation.

Positives Of Mellowing Include:

  • Extra energy and less stress
  • Peace of mind – Allows your  wisdom to step in
  • Finding alternatives to battling
  • Improves your sense of humour

Extra Energy less stress

Have you noticed when you get all ‘het up’ you use an amazing amount of energy and feel drained after ‘letting loose’ It can raise your blood pressure even make you feel physically ill.

Imagine what you could achieve if you channel that energy into something positive.

Peace Of Mind And Wisdom

Allowing your  gentleness, wisdom, and tolerance to surface is often (not always) characteristic of maturity. There are times when it simply does not matter…

Try using your favourite peaceful activity reading, journaling, talking a walk or listening to music.

The saying comes to mind ‘this too shall pass’ When things are going badly take refuge in the thought this too shall pass. Avoid getting cocky when things are going brilliantly…remember ‘this to shall pass’.

Finding Alternatives To Battling

Remember when you were young when you would no more have given in than fly to the moon?

There comes a time when it just not that important.

Listening and seeking to understand another’s point of view enables you to see an issues from a different perspective

Walking a mile in someone else’s shoes …i.e. avoiding sitting in judgment

Being open in your communication and having real conversations. Often the real problem is not what is on the surface.

Improves Your Sense Of Humour

When you can learn to laugh at yourself. Even when you feel totally embarrassed.. remember whatever it was…the sun will still come up tomorrow. It is most likely that you are the only one who remembers the incident.

Humour is also a great leveller and can create an opening for relaxation in  the challenge.

There are countless instances documented on the value of having a belly  laugh. I would add hugs  here also.

Now before you think I may have slipped into sainthood … all the points above are a work in progress for me.

While I was pontificating over my mellowness… the Universe laughed and laughed and laughed…

 

Mellowing confidently

And sent a challenge or three in the last week… to test my progress. To date Universe 1…Di nil!

My question for you is…Have you mellowed with age and what were the advantages? I would love to hear your experiences.

From my heart to your heart Di

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Celebrating Stepfamilies

 

Hell….p       I’m a Stepmother. Have you any idea how I felt? The day I woke to the realisation I was actually a step-mother…it took 2 years to happen… from a blind date with Les to our marriage. It was not like it was a rash decision…

Nothing in life had prepared me for this situation. That was in 1971. There has been much water under the bridge since then. Some of it absolutely fantastic, some Ok, and some really awful.

Step famlies

In case you have not noticed there is no manual for being a step-parent, a parent or a grandparent… or a wife or husband for that matter… or even life.

The last Sunday in July has been designated as National Stepfamily Awareness Day . A day dedicated to the step-family, it provides an opportunity to acknowledge, promote and celebrate the great work that step-families do.

Website: www.stepfamily.org.au/

From their site….Step-families Australia is a national peak body working with a network of state groups and community service providers to strengthen step-families across Australia, providing quality information, family support services, practitioner training, research and advocacy.

 Child Support System and Step families

Our research suggests that step-families are beginning to be recognised as a unique and important contemporary family form, however social policy development in Australia does not yet adequately address or support step-families’ unique needs relates for  step-families

It is generally known that step-families are ‘born of loss’. Whether formed by separation and divorce, as most are today, or the death of a parent, more common in previous times, it is clear that loss in both cases is the precursor to step-family life. (2002) I. Gerrard

A few points…

It is estimated that 1 in 5 Australian families is a step family. While resources abound in many areas of life services often fail to address the unique differences connected with  step-families.

  • Step families are born of loss
  • Families come together from different histories and expectations
  • Children may be torn between being in 2 homes
  • Step parents have a unique role as do step grandparents

A different take again from the Step-family site….Biological families have family trees, step families have family forests

Why do I feel passionate about it?

In the early 70′s I was married. Nothing startling there.  Except Les had 4 children aged 10-16 and I was 24. We lived in a small, parochial sugar community outside of Mackay.

Setting the scene… I was tall and slim, short dresses were the fashion and I wore them, my hair was long … I DID NOT FIT IN. At that time I did not understand the stigma that was attached to being part of a step family. I was to busy living our lives.

Step families are born of loss

When a couple get married there is traditionally he and she, they have their children and they all grow together as a family.  With a step family there has been a loss through divorce or a death .

This creates a new facet for a relationship for starters with unbelievable challenges. It can be a minefield  When emotions and feelings are not addressed or suppressed they will bubble up somewhere at some time.

Understanding that sense of loss and seeking help  can create beautiful relationships.

Different history and expectations

Remember when you went into your first relationship, the differences, his and her family history …how you each did things and what little habits annoyed you. Add the loss factor, step into a new relationship and the issues are easily magnified.

A huge part of the success of my marriage was my husband never let his children come between us. We were a team, if he had something to say to me he said it in private. The name and blame game seldom leads to domestic harmony.

Children torn between 2 homes

How difficult it is for children especially when young to understand the complexities of how to behave when I am at Mum’s home and how I behave at Dad’s and knowing what is expected of them.

I know several teachers who attest to the behavioural problems and lack of attention of these torn children. If the values of the homes are markedly different that places an extra strain on all the relationships.

Sadly I saw this in action when working at a Contact Centre… which is a safe place for the non residential parent to have a supervised visit with their children.  While there were beautiful families attending there was an element of using the ‘children as pawns’.

When respect for the past partner is in place and communication open and honest it is possible to create love and beauty in blended families.

Step-parents and step-grandparents have a unique role

We all face challenges in life from the miniscule to the monumental…and relationships sit right up there at the top.

When the adults look at their position in the relationship and support each other it can be a beautiful experience. There are so many areas of support and help open to us today.

Now comes the questions…

  • Did I do it right?
  • Was I successful step- mum?
  • Have I been a successful step grandmother?

My answer is there were many things I could have done better. I dealt with my life using the skills I had available to me at that time.

Today I would do it differently and that may be the voice of maturity speaking.

My wish is that I be remembered as a loving and great role model for my grand-children.

The National website has a stack of resources among them a great list of tip sheets for  all step family members http://www.stepfamily.org.au/?page_id=85

These words by Jason Hairston popped up on the Facebook page United for Change this morning…. on “You can disagree with someone and still have love and respect for them. We can’t continue to allow our differences justify being enemies.”

Solution: Express your truth and allow others to express theirs. Connect with those with like minds and coexist with those who have different ideas. A painting wouldn’t be beautiful without different colours and the human race wouldn’t be beautiful without different cultures and ideas.

It struck a cord with me…I think this can be adapted for step families.

Confidently connected step families

Step families… they are for real, they are here to stay and they are unique…whatever your challenge  remember to have love, light and laughter in your life.  Celebrating step families.

From my heart to your heart. Di

Roses for love and confidence

 

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A Tale Of Two Rolfs… And An Opportunity For Societal Change.

 

Right now I have my confidence, courage and power in both hands as I  speak up on a subject close to my heart and a part of my life experience.

 

Confidence women over50 , abused women, women's health

 

A phrase from Sark the American Author says “Today we can all choose to spin a little silk and let it grease everything we touch.” Today my ‘silk’ is double strength…

My opinion on what you ask? Rolf Harris being found guilty of grooming and sexually assaulting four teenage girls.

This incredibly complex  man who has had an amazingly successful career  for over 50 years is now in disgrace. He presented as a happy, jocular and much loved Australian entertainer who was adored my millions of fans the world over. Behind his sunny exterior lies a dark side.

I cannot begin to imagine the anguish his family, those who testified and all others concerned are facing right now.

Points that jumped out at me were…

Grooming

A man who groomed girls for seduction one article read… ‘no rape, beating or force was used’ Rolf Harris said… and ‘touchy feely’ he called himself…

Just to clarify…Child grooming comprises actions deliberately undertaken with the aim of befriending and establishing an emotional connection with a child, to lower their inhibitions to allow sexual abuse of the child. Masters in separation from others they then call it is ‘our little secret’ . All delivered from someone in authority, considered trustworthy and or famous.

No rape, beating or force used

Therefore his justification would be ‘no harm done’… she really went along with it and wanted it… words enough to make anyone’s blood boil.

 No remorse

‘All lying’ were his words… Rolf Harris displayed an almost arrogant jocular approach to proceedings with his singing of Jake the Peg and description of his inventing the wobble board and lengthy regaling in his successes over 50 years of entertainment.

 His Background

His tormented background and his dark side are covered in these articles.

You may like to read these articles from ‘The Courier Mail’ Brisbane’s daily newspaper http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/breaking-news/rolf-harris-found-guilty-of-12-counts-of-indecent-assault-of-four-girls/story-fnihse59-1226972998283?sv=5463a2254914510c040eac23e6b5adcf&&net_sub_uid=116837798&nk=c56a6f0b498d07f05a1c98f63de175c6

and ‘The Monthly’ Australian politics, society and culture.

http://www.themonthly.com.au/issue/2014/july/1404178677/peter-conrad/inside-strange-world-rolf-harris

Celebrity and Timing

Rather than the shame and blame, the outcry of punish him or not… I urge you to take a step back and consider. Does society have one set of rules for the famous and one for the rest of us? Is it Ok for the accepted rules of manners, behaviour and etiquette to NOT apply to the famous? Were signs and symptoms of his behaviour brushed under the carpet?

A friend of mind Madonna expressed this perfectly this morning…’when will we stop demonising and start understanding the drivers of this behaviour’.

Why am I speaking up?

In a nutshell…I am a survivor of a pack rape at age 15… and a childhood spent living in fear from alcoholic abuse at very level. My father was a hail fellow well met’ when out in the world …and the devil incarnate at home.

In 2006 I wrote and self published my story Beyond Abuse…my own words ring in my ears ‘I was looking for love but sex found me in its most hideous form.’

 

Confidence womenover50, womens  health

 

Grooming played a part, so did my being a victim albeit I did not know that then. Yes force was used…however being terrified and petrified paralyses you into compliance. From the articles I have read in the past 2 days that appears to cover comments from the women who testified.

I am in no way excusing his behaviour, or lessening anyone’s pain and anguish.

What I am saying is we are demonising him, unwittingly we are demonising being a victim. Isn’t it time we as a society started to support and deal with understanding the drivers behind this behaviour.

Why am I telling you this?

Before I wrote the book I knew it had to come from a positive place. That created a huge challenge for me…  It was quite a journey for me to reach the point of forgiveness. For me to be able to ask myself what had happened in the lives of my abusers to have them cause such pain and devastation in other’s lives… and eventually to recognise the unmistakeable touch of grace that was in my life.

Let me clarify…in forgiving I was forgiving their souls, not condoning their actions. In doing that I have achieved a state of calm.

Even when atrocious acts are performed there comes a time for each of us to take responsibility for ourselves, to seek professional help, to recognise the patterns that create abuse and learn and adopt strategies that will help you to move forward.

When I came to the point of doing the above my life changed dramatically.

Did it happen overnight? No

Did I say it was easy? No!

Was it worth it ? Yes

What has this to do with Rolf Harris?

A question I am often asked is why weren’t the perpetrators of rape brought to justice and why don’t I do it now. I have reached my point of forgiveness, that forgiveness does not absolve them it does however give me an incredible sense of peace.

If I were to speak up now I would consider it revenge and it could potentially destroy three generations of a family.

I am not saying a perpetrator should not be brought to justice… I am saying we all handle life differently and we all have our journey to travel.

This case could be a catalyst for societal change. My intent was to have you pause and think about how we could interrupt  the patterns in ongoing abuse start understanding the drivers of this behaviour’ get you thinking how we as a society can create a positive change, Education is a great place to start…

 

Change, women over50, confident wmen over50, womens health

 

Start lobbying your members of Parliament

A news item caught my eye yesterday with the words… Self appointed PM for Women’s and Indigenous Affairs will cut $5.3M from family violence and sexual assault services.

This is NOT a positive and helpful move…Maybe change has to come from people power…maybe it is time for a societal change.

Today I have shared my thoughts and experiences. I repeat Sark’s words “Today we can all choose to spin a little silk and let it grease everything we touch.”

I wish peace, safety, blessings, much love and hugs to all and would love to hear your views.

Di

 

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Woohoo Social Media Day

Can you imagine a life today without social media? It has changed our lives especially when we choose to embrace it with confidence. In the spirit of technologies it connect us and brings us together on and offline.

Social media gets a bad wrap, however it is not all negative… so let’s look at some positives…with a fresh perspective.

 

Social media, Confidence,

It enhances and offers another facet to life. For some it has been a change in how they conduct business, for others the way we socialise and I think for all in the way we interact.

The 30th June marks the 5th Social Media Day, an International day  with meet ups, gatherings and Conferences covering six continents being planned.  mashable.com/smday/

Did I embrace it with open arms? Nooooooooooooooooo I didn’t!

Technology and I had a rocky start, we have had many spirited discussions and shed a tear or two (OK I fibbed, it was oceans of tears)  throughout out tumultuous relationship. We now have fabulous times… and times to work through. Uummmm can anyone else relate to that?

How do I see it?

Connections

  • Incredible connections leading to friendships happen through social media.
  • Usually beginning with commenting on another’s posts then forming a connection through common interest.
  • Instances of ‘who knows who’ are magical and simply too many to count.
  • The fastest growing age group for using Facebook is women 55+

Snapshot of friends and family

  • It gives us the feel goods, provides humour and a light hearted peek into how friends and family see and experience life.
  • Many of us are time poor and social media provides that snapshot.
  • It is an avenue of social support for those who are out of circulation for any reason.
  • Yes, yes, yes I know there are those who go a tad overboard but of course neither you or I know any of those do we?

Special Interest

This one could be a full on blog post. I am so grateful and appreciative of my connections through special interest.

By that I mean interests as in:

  • Speaking -activities I am involved in, this is a strong area of interest to me.
  • Programs I have been through where a FB closed group supports everyone as they get a handle on a new skill.
  • Self help where I have benefited from giving and receiving
  • Blogging groups…wow the benefits I could chat about forever…

Opportunity for Self growth

  • Social media is ever changing so it encourages you to be open to new ways of doing things.
  • It is providing skills for the future…who knows what social media will be around in the next 15 years.
  • And.. opportunities for self growth as you deal with the negatives that do arise on the net. There are those who use their anonymity as a way to tear down, embarrass or shock. Learning to deal with these  will definitely improve your communication skills.

Business related

  • This can be summed up as a way of building trust, leading to building a relationship then doing business. We do business with those we know, like and trust.
  • It offers the opportunity to be open you up to a global audience.

After all that am I social media guru? Not likely.

Will I ever be? Not likely.

I learned an important lesson after the demise of my husband 12 years ago. I took all my frustrations out on the computer ( I was virtually computer illiterate) , blamed it for everything and beat myself up because I could not master it. A friend said to me ‘Di, could you do that when Les was alive?’ When I answered ‘no’. Their reply was ‘Well what makes you think the act of his death would make you an instant computer wizz’.

Confidence, womenover50,  light bulb moments

A light bulb moment for me… often we think we should be able to do something new right NOW… when in fact gaining new skills is a journey.

The University of Life has given me incredible strengths and rattled my weaknesses.. if you are going to rattle your skeletons at least make them dance… and I did! Social media sits firmly in my current and future experiential learning.

I have chosen to make it my friend in the best way I know how. And to be confident in being open to improving my skill level. Do more of what makes you shine and radiate confidence.

Confidence social medai confident women beyond 50

Tomorrow I hope you take a moment to consider and show gratitude for the benefits of social media and the beautiful people it has brought into your life.

I would love to hear about your social media stories and journey… cheers Di

 

 

 

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There is always more learning

 

Hi everyone… oohh I am forever on steep learning curve today it is with the gorgeous Sarah from a blogging group showing me more effective ways to promote my blog.

who are you..what do you want to play 400!

Wooohooo here I go.. if you have not stepped up today…go have a go…whatever that means to you… cheers Di

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