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Is anybody happier because you passed his way? Does anyone remember that you spoke to him today? This day is almost over, and its toiling time is through; Is there anyone to utter now a kindly word of you? Did you give a cheerful greeting to the friend who came along?  Or a churlish sort of “Howdy” and then vanish in the throng?  Were you selfish pure and simple as you rushed along the way,  Or is someone mighty grateful for a deed you did today? Can you say tonight, in parting with the day that’s slipping fast, That you helped a single brother of the many that you passed? Is a single heart rejoicing over what you did or said; Does a man whose hopes were fading now with courage look ahead? Did you waste the day, or lose it, was it well or sorely spent? Did you leave…

“If you think that rape is wrong for the wrong reasons, you are part of the problem. The reasons we condemn rape often strengthen the same power structures that lead to rape in the first place. The common arguments against rape are also the common contributing factors to female oppression, denial of female agency and sexual violence as a tool of punishment.” Join Shreena Thakore as she deconstructs the complexities of rape culture in an Indian setting and elucidates the right reasons to think that rape is wrong. Shreena Thakore is the co-founder of No Country for Women – an organization dedicated to fighting institutionalized rape culture in India. Their work focuses on bridging the gap between academia and activism, and has gained significant national and international recognition. She studied at Brown University, USA.

… Continued: I could tell story after story of pretending to be asleep and him coming into my bedroom regardless if my mom was home or not. He raped me at 11 and a half and I ran and locked myself in the bathroom in pain. I then had a babysitter who must have been in her 20’s as I remember she had a baby. I decided that if Mary had a baby without sex then I might be able to pass off having a baby and say that I was like Mary. I understood nothing but somehow, I was frightened of getting pregnant and then explaining what had happened and I was so ashamed I did not want my mom to know. This babysitter must have thought that I was crazy, as I argued that this could happen.  Well, one day I brought home a paper to go to the…

I note the obvious differences in the human family. Some of us are serious, some thrive on comedy. Some declare their lives are lived as true profundity, and others claim they really live the real reality. The variety of our skin tones can confuse, bemuse, delight, brown and pink and beige and purple, tan and blue and white. I’ve sailed upon the seven seas and stopped in every land, I’ve seen the wonders of the world not yet one common man. I know ten thousand women called Jane and Mary Jane, but I’ve not seen any two who really were the same. Mirror twins are different although their features jibe, and lovers think quite different thoughts while lying side by side. We love and lose in China, we weep on England’s moors, and laugh and moan in Guinea, and thrive on Spanish shores. We seek success in Finland, are born…

Sometimes being an adult that suffered from child molestation or rape never leaves my mind and the repercussions of it have affected me deeply. The effect is a scar just like the kind that you receive when you’re badly injured and get stitches. I cannot speak for others as I have only had my own personal experience.  The severity of mine was very bad, it was cruel, it was terrifying, it was unmentionable and scary.  I was frightened most of my young life and it was ongoing from 7 to 17.  I was in a very innocent age at the time being born in the 50’s.  My generation did not have TV depicting much about wholesome family unit shows.  I had no Internet to look up things and asking people might have revealed something I felt ashamed, guilty, uneducated, and unknowledgeable about.  I had a small teaching of the Bible from a few Sunday School classes.  I…

Sexual violence, including rape, harassment, and other forms of sexual assault, occurs in our society in high numbers. It is one of the most undisclosed and under-reported crimes, partially due to the shame and stigma faced by many of the victims and as a result, the crime is shrouded in silence and secrecy. A reluctance to disclose has been found to be a barrier to treatment, when treatment can often be of significant help in resolving the feelings of guilt, shame, fear, anger, anxiety, and depression that might follow a sexual attack. Nevertheless, though sexual violence is a traumatic and life-altering experience, recovery is possible. A compassionate therapist who understands trauma, especially sexual trauma, and its effects is often able to help people who have experienced rape and other forms of sexual abuse. Research has consistently shown that the relationship between the therapist and the person in treatment is the…

Perfection was created to make us feel imperfect, but imperfect, of course, is the perfect thing to be. We spend every hour of every day, every day of every week, trying to be different, trying to be unique. Our nature is to search for answers to life’s questions, concepts we don’t understand, like “What is perfection?” You strive to be “perfect,” a term you don’t understand. You should be yourself before it gets out of hand. Surely happiness is of priority over a word like “perfection,” so ask yourself this, Who looks back in your reflection? – Matthew

The childhood trauma Lauren Book suffered robbed her of her childhood, but forced her to learn how to find her voice and rebuild her life with purpose…through her TED Talk, she challenges viewers to do what she’s been challenged to do through her journey from victim of physical, sexual and emotional abuse to struggling survivor and now thriver and internationally recognized advocate for change. Along the way, Lauren’s journey has often been three steps forward and ten steps back. Seeking to address and unearth the root cause of behaviors and decisions within her own life, and society’s take on child protection issues and child sexual abuse at large, Lauren explains how she found her driving force – her X – by choosing to face, instead of run from, some of her darkest places…and finding her (wh)Y? Lauren Book, M.S. Ed, is an internationally respected & renowned child advocate, former classroom…

One of the most discriminatory stereotypes that persist is the incorrect association between mental health problems and violent behavior. People often avoid living or socializing with people with mental health challenges because they assume people with mental health challenges are dangerous and violent. As a result, these individuals often face all sorts of discrimination and stigma which can lead to low self-esteem, isolation, and hopelessness, and may stop them from seeking mental health care. The media play a significant role in portraying that people with mental health problems are violent. There are few positive stories that highlight the recovery processes of individuals with serious mental health challenges and family members. On television, characters with mental illness are often depicted as the most dangerous of all groups. Many people believe this stereotype. However, review of research on violence and mental illness has found that the contribution of people with mental health challenges to…

Open your heart to happiness, Let every pore absorb light. Swim in the joy of the here and now, And cast off the darkness of night. Walk in the summer of sunshine. Fly in the blueness of sky. Know possibilities are boundless. Understand that nothing can die. Step from the shadows of torment. Sing ’til your throat gets too sore. Smile for as long as the day is, And laugh just a little bit more. Breathe slowly and deeply and listen. Give all your ideas a chance. Let the sun beat down on your goodness, And kick off your shoes and dance. – Paul Hayward