Respect safe spaces.

5 Aug

Respect the safe spaces and maintain consent.

The term safe space generally means “a place or environment in which a person or category of people can feel confident that they will not be exposed to discrimination, criticism, harassment or any other emotional or physical harm.” (Oxford Dictionary).

When somebody shares a traumatic experience with you, appreciate that space. Many victims take time to speak out for several reasons. Society is quick to mock and criticise those that speak out. Our community often question their credibility. It is common for perpetrators and their supporters to gaslight the person and make them believe that the trauma is their fault. All of these actions and more fall under the terminology known as Rape Culture. 

According to https://www.marshall.edu/wcenter/sexual-assault/rape-culture/

“Rape Culture is an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture. Rape culture is perpetuated through the use of misogynistic language, the objectification of women’s bodies, and the glamorization of sexual violence, thereby creating a society that disregards women’s rights and safety.”

When somebody finds the courage to speak, listen and give respect to that space. 

Consent: 

GBV happens against consent. If you want to tape the conversation, make sure the victim/survivor is aware of the recording and has permitted you to share the details and recording.  

Confidentiality is one of the essential elements that lead to an increased sense of security for survivors. Sharing their trauma without consent is a further violation.  

Speaking out takes a tremendous amount of strength but do not confuse that strength. Sharing one journey does not equip anyone for the public scrutiny that follows. Public opinion can be brutal, and if the perpetrator is powerful or connected politically, it can have even more dangerous effects on the psyche and well being of the victim/survivor. It does not matter if the person is an activist, man or child. 

In 2018, I was invited into a safe space to share my trauma. I believed that stakeholders would respect that. I soon discovered the planner shared some of the information on a public platform. The posting is a violation of the safe space. This action created additional trauma for myself and other survivors in the room, which led to mental breakdowns for some of us. 

GBV has been a pandemic for centuries, and we all need to do our bit in combating it. We need to listen and be gentle with others and ourselves. Read and listen to those that have done the research and groundwork. Have the respect and understanding that it involves feelings, psyche and emotions. Humans are hurt and need healing. Healing is different for everyone, and there is no time limit. Respect each other 

For counselling and/or Life coaching contact https://www.letsatsihealingspace.biz/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: