Beverly Engel

“Why Is It So Important to Remember?

When you were abused, those around you acted as if it weren’t happening. Since no one else acknowledged the abuse, you sometimes felt that it wasn’t real. Because of this you felt confused. You couldn’t trust your own experience and perceptions. Moreover, others’ denial led you to suppress your memories, thus further obscuring the issue.

You can end your own denial by remembering. Allowing yourself to remember is a way of confirming in your own mind that you didn’t just imagine it. Because the person who abused you did not acknowledge your pain, you may have also thought that perhaps it wasn’t as bad as you felt it was. In order to acknowledge to yourself that it really was that bad, you need to remember as much detail as possible. Because by denying what happened to you, you are doing to yourself exactly what others have done to you in the past: You are negating and denying yourself.”


Beverly Engel, The Right to Innocence
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The Right to Innocence The Right to Innocence by Beverly Engel
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