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EVERYDAY LEGEND: What Does Redemption Mean To a Rape Survivor?

By Sukh Singh, Associate Partner & Mentorship Coach

Around 1 in every 5 women has experienced some form of sexual abuse in their life¹. That isn't just a number, there's a reality behind it. There are women around the world who have been hurt and violated and very few who feel safe enough to talk about it...

Recently, British journalist Trevor McDonald interviewed a remarkable woman who was raped at the age of 13, and discovered how she found peace in herself to then be able to move on. When I heard it, I was so struck by Madeleine Black's journey; from holding a venomous hate for her abusers to being able to genuinely move on through forgiveness. As she says in the interview,

"My therapist suggested to me, 'maybe they weren't born rapists.' I just... I just...there was just no way I wanted to forgive them. I just wanted somebody to kidnap them, tie them up, rape and torture them for hours on end like they had done to me. But [my therapist] planted a seed in my mind, and that seed started to grow.

I just really wanted to understand, what did it take for them to take that path?... I wanted to know how could they be so violent towards another human being? What had they seen or heard or experienced themselves that could make them behave in that way?"

- Madeleine Black

The interview is 15 minutes in length and, whether you can relate to such a traumatic experience personally or not, we each have our own experiences in our lives, our own hardships. We each have someone in our lives who has hurt us, who we can forgive too. Mrs Black, who is now married with three children and a counsellor herself, provides an incredible example here and I would encourage you to listen to the interview. Please feel free to share your thoughts, questions and feelings about the interview below in the comments section...

Click here for the interview with Madeleine Black and her journey of redemption.

¹Facts from Rape Crisis

Being Able To Forgive The Past:

So many of us hold onto grievances, painful or traumatic experiences that can blind us from the life we can live. Have you had any experiences where you have been able to forgive someone or something from the past, maybe even yourself?


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