TW: Emotional Abuse and Images of Wounds
- Emotional abuse is experienced by people of ALL genders; however, this article focuses on women who are recipients of emotional abuse (vis a vis personal experiences)
- Emotional abuse is a precursor to physical abuse. Though I was not physically harmed in this marriage, it is likely that he would have escalated to physical violence (and he has a history of physical violence with women).
- What constitutes trauma? A lot of different things, and emotional abuse is one of those things! Research shows that trauma alters your brain, so it is imperative that we take this seriously. I have included a resource below that thoroughly addresses this research.
Megan Thee Stallion’s “Hot Girl Summer” is an anthem dedicated to women who disrupt, upset, and defy the dominant social order and to women who experience a type of freedom that compels men to wallow in their aversion to female autonomy.
This is the type of woman I love and respect. This type of woman is me. So… why the hell would I emphasize that I am not promoting a “hot girl summer?”
Because I’m hyperaware of the tensions between authorial intent and reader reception, allow me to clarify the purpose of my title.
My title does not problematize, trivialize, or villainize sis’s timely message which ought to be propagated AND well-received. My title seeks to reroute and redirect your attention toward a much-needed stage of recovery, a stage that is often bypassed in favor of temporary, short-term fixes.
To have a hot girl summer, you must first have a season devoted to health and wellness, healing, wholeness, and upliftment.
If you examine the lyrics, you’ll notice that Megan and Nicki M center unapologetic sexual agency, and I would argue this is a deterrence to healing (and healing is a requirement for achieving wellness and wholeness). If you have been hurt (in a platonic or non-platonic relationship with a man), bouncing from one d*ck to the next or simultaneously twerking on multiple d*cks does not lead to restoration and rejuvenation. It only occults the painful truth. I embarked on my journey of healing a year ago, and for the purposes of optimal clarity, I declined non-platonic/romantic advances with conviction.
This allowed me to direct my attention inward and silence external noise. Like me, I want women to embark on their own healing journeys, free from distraction, and get intimate with themselves.
A Notable Success in my Healing Journey
I, with the assistance of my support network, dismantled a trauma bond that festered over the course of 3 and a 1/2 years.
For those who are not familiar, a trauma bond refers to a cyclical pattern of instability and dysfunction coupled with positive reinforcement. In other words, my relationship was a perpetual game of “he loves me; he loves me not,” you know, that toxic game we loved to play as children.
The oscillation between “love” and rejection creates immense confusion and causes the abused to form an unhealthy attachment to their abuser, which is why telling an abused person to simply “exit the relationship” is not helpful! It’s not that *insert logical expletive* simple!
Because I believe in concretizing abstractions, I have compiled a list of personal experiences that reflect the instability of my past relationship. As a reminder, this is not an exhaustive list.