I've been holding off on posting this particular post for at least a month because I was unsure of how it would be received by the public. Due to recent events in the media surrounding the issue of abuse, I felt that it was time to publish this post.

I found myself questioning the responses/actions of people upon learning that their romantic interest, partner or spouse experienced abuse/assault prior to their current relationship. I wondered if people found it difficult to be involved with someone who has experienced something so traumatic and sometimes life altering. I decided to reach out to a few people to get their opinion on this subject and thought that it would be great to be able to share their responses with you.

The first response that I received comes from the beautiful mind of a trusted blogger friend by the name of Mahneerah Griffin and she is the brains behind Life In 100 Words.

Can a person who's been abused either mentally or physically find love or have a successful relationship? The psych might tell you "it's unlikely." Well, I'm here to tell you it's very possible.

I had been a victim of sexual abuse by the hands of a family member at the age of 12. I would be lying if I told you that it didn't effect my views on men, relationships, and sex. But there is one factor that was a huge help in my recovery, forgiveness.

People who are victims of abuse carry a heavy load on their backs. It dulls their appetite for life, it takes a toll on their emotions, it kills their faith in love. You need to forgive. Forgive the person or people who abused you and you must forgive yourself. I'm not saying it's going to be easy or that it'll happen overnight, but it must be done.

When I'm in a new relationship, I make sure that my past abuse is discussed. It's usually before we choose to become physical, I explain everything to my lover about my past. I answer any questions that he may have and hope that he's understanding especially since in a new relationship I'm hesitant about sex.

Most of the time, they are. Other times they aren't, but C'est la Vie (that's life).

As for maintaining a new relationship with past abuse, I work on building trust and honesty. I make sure that my past doesn't translate and taint my future. I begin to build inner strength to allow a man to love every fabulous aspect of me (mentally, physically, and spiritually). I also learned to leave the past in the past.

Just because you've been abused doesn't mean you don't deserve love, trust, protection, and a lasting relationship.

Let go of the past abuse. Allow yourself to be loved and made love to.  Allow yourself to be free of past guilt about your abuse.

Be brave and let love heal your scars.
What a beautiful response! I think that sometimes we as people forget that others have had experiences, positive or negative, before we came into their lives. The fact of the matter is that we all have experiences and some of those experiences can be traumatic.