why I won’t stop listening to “both”* sides

Photo by Aleksandar Pasaric from Pexels

We’re not supposed to question victims.

I understand this.  Too often, victims are harassed and disbelieved.  I don’t think I’d ever question a rape victim or a victim of sexual assault in any shape or form.  Not from their own mouths, at any rate.  Sometimes people around them will make up stories, but victims rarely are the drive behind that (if ever!)

But victims are more than sexual assault survivors.  And sometimes “victimhood” is less easy to see, especially when abusers are quicker to claim victim status than actual victims!

How do you know that you haven’t silenced the victim, when you refuse to hear both sides? How do you know that you, with your enlightened senses, aren’t wrong?

I certainly don’t know.

I won’t also give the alleged abuser the benefit of the doubt.  Sometimes it’s not worth it to me.  I don’t owe that to anyone, nor does anyone owe it to me.

But if I choose to listen to both sides, that’s my right, too.  And I won’t feel shamed for it.

Note: I put “both” in the title with quotes, because sometimes there are more than two sides. Therefore it’s sometimes “all” sides.

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