RA survivors need to feel that they are not alone. and so do their Spouses. Having a team to believe in you and stand by you is something that both need. RA abuse has been hidden since ancient times.
It is complex. A lot of families live in secrecy when it comes to dealing with the torment of a survivors recovery and healing. The general public still can not comprehend the manipulation and torture that a survivor went through. Even on the rare occasion that a survivor reaches out for help they are told that those things could not of happened. That is by design. No one wants to believe that in today’s society that things that horrible can happen to someone and they survive. They think since most do not recover their memories until adulthood, that a lot of their memories are over exaggerated.
In most these cases the primary support system is the survivors significant other. In a typical relationship there is a level of intimacy that does not exist anywhere else. So hear lies the question. If the survivor has their spouse for support, who does their spouse have? A topic like this is impossible to have around the water cooler at work or even to confide in your closest friends. Living a seemingly double lifestyle can become overwhelming. Its hard enough to open up about typical problems in life, talking about the effects of RA is nearly impossible.
This is why Robyn and I are led to start a support network for RA survivors and their families. As the saying goes, there is strength in numbers. There is no better support network to have than others who have gone through the same thing.
God is doing great things. Even before I met Robyn I felt l was called to provide a place of refuge for those who were abused. Since we have been together we have counseled a few dozen people. Almost all those people say the same thing, that they wish there was some place they can go that was safe so they can focus on their healing with out being judged. Unfortunately we are not there yet, but God willing we will be, soon.
One of the visions I had was being in an old school building that was divided up between housing and an operations center where we would have people go and “rescue” those in need. The other is more of a campground setting where there are cabins and campers that were donated to house the families in need. Both would be focused on providing an area that a survivor and their family can come to heal physically, emotionally, and most importantly spiritually. For those that need it, a part of the recovery would be learning basic life skills. We would help them to get job training, schooling, and even housing when the time comes. In our experience helping a survivor is a 24 / 7 operation. Our phones ring at all hours of the day and night. To have a place of refuge would be a huge blessing since essentially all of their needs would be at one place. Not only would we have people who have experience in dealing with helping survivors heal, survivors would be able to help one another at their various levels of healing. More importantly it will be a safe place to work through their experiences without judgment or condemnation. They will be able to freely talk with others to hopefully edify and lift each other up. Even their families will have a support network being around others who have gone through the same things.
In closing please pray that God will make a way for this to happen. This is a major need for survivors and their families. The current way is not good enough. It basically follows the same generic “church” model on your only good enough for one hour one day a week. There is nothing normal about healing from RA, so why should we keep doing things the normal way?