The #MeToo movement empowered experiencers of sexual abuse and harassment to take a stand. Women from all walks of life came forward to share their stories of how this form of abuse impacted their lives. Whilst these women are to be wholeheartedly commended by the community on their courage in publicly drawing their personal boundaries of self-respect, I highlight an often-overlooked benefit available to the so-called perpetrator.
Effectively when we say ‘no’ to an undesirable situation, we become more empowered. The women involved in the #MeToo movement are modelling what taking back your power looks like. Not only have these women paved the way forward in supporting the exposure of harmful behaviour, but they also have the potential to create an opportunity for the ‘perpetrators’ to examine why they are attracted to taking the power of another.
In exposing behaviour that reflects abuse of power, we draw attention to the dynamics of power imbalances. All relationships of this nature are co-dependant. Those who stay silent are enablers. They are in fear of what might happen to them if they speak out, so they too enable the one in power to continue to take their power.
We are often minded to blame another for the situations we find ourselves in. Our legal and societal systems support this idea, which in my view, only continues to separate us. It may seem counter-intuitive, but to punish someone’s behaviour by jailing, shaming or segregating them is not beneficial to the evolution of our society. Indeed, it does nothing to assist a perpetrator from seeking the support they need.
We are aware that abuse of a sexual nature is prevalent, yet no matter how much we talk about it and say it’s inappropriate, the behaviour only becomes more covert. As the saying goes, if we keep doing what we’ve always done, we’ll always get what we’ve always got. It’s time to look at resolving issues such as these from a completely different perspective.
Like many of us, I too have experienced chronic sexual abuse. I have spent a good deal of my life trying to figure out why I wanted to maintain my status as a victim. Of course, many of us now understand that maintaining this familiar place feels ‘safe’ at some level. I knew this dynamic and how to play it. But everything changed when I was able to view the ‘abusers’ with compassion. Indeed, my entire life changed.
Compassion was available to me when I observed power imbalances from a purely energetic perspective. It was from here I could perceive that people who appeared to exist in a more powerful situation, are just simply very skilled in taking someone’s power. When we zoom out, we notice the true position is that the person lacks power, so they will look for it wherever they can get it. So, I understood that if I am in their space and willing to give my power to them, I empower them.
Why do we empower abusers?
Energetically, as an adult I allowed others to take my power because at some fundamental level, I held the false belief that they held the source of my happiness.
We have all done this in some form in the hope that we will land our dream job or reach a level of status that we imagine will have value in society. In seeking this type of approval, we are merely feeding the energy vampires and perpetuating personal patterns that are familiar to us.
To create an energetic shift, we need to look at people who are abusing us, and whilst taking that courageous stand to say, ‘no more!’, we must also energetically offer up our compassion to the situation we find ourselves in. In doing this, we release ourselves from this harmful energetic connection so that we will not perpetuate the pattern. Additionally, we release the so-called ‘abuser’ so that they might create the space for themselves. If they are availed this opportunity, they may find that they are simply in search of their own source of power, which if they are prepared to look is found within them.
How wonderfully unifying that could be for us all.
For personal zoom sessions on how to take back your own power in abusive situations, or if you feel that you need to reconnect with your own personal power, contact Virginia Robin via email at email@example.com