Earlier this week I was reading a report about a man in a position of power at a large media organization and the litany of accounts from the women working there detailing his horrible treatment of them. Their stories range from “I always suspected something bad was going on” to years of abuse and manipulation.
While I was reading one article in particular, my mind was suddenly flooded with the recollection of something I hadn’t thought much about in a long time. I spent the next few hours after that thinking about every detail I could recall and then I spent a few more hours thinking about what it meant to me now.
Before I tell you the story, let me just say that I am keenly aware of my experience being nothing compared to the women I was reading about. I’m not trying to suggest otherwise and I’m certainly not telling this story so anyone will feel badly for me.
I’m telling this story because many times when people hear the accounts like those of the women in the news now, they have trouble processing the reality of these situations even if they believe the women. It all seems like someone else’s reality or the reality of some part of society they have never seen or touched or heard about outside of a movie theater.
I struggled with whether to write this and struggled even more with whether to post it for several reasons, not the least of which is that I despise appearing vulnerable in any way. To be honest, if I hadn’t looked up the person involved in this and discovered he died two years ago, I would not have shared this.
All that being said, even if no one else reads this, I can read it and appreciate how much I’ve grown as a person since then. I can read it and appreciate how good my imperfect life is right now. I can read it and appreciate that despite my many mistakes, I ended up none the worse for it.
Looking back on what happened fifteen years ago, knowing what I know now, it’s hard for me to believe how foolish, naive, unwise, etc… I was at that time. But then again, that’s exactly the point…