All my life I’ve been a fixer – I’ve listened to other people’s problems, felt that I’ve known exactly what they needed to do to resolve their issues, and been convinced that I was right, and then told them what they should do. In doing so I have taken on the responsibility for fixing whatever their problem is. I’ve spent hours thinking about different scenarios of how I could tell them, thinking of all the different things they needed to do to get a perfect result – and in doing so I have been distracted from living my own life. Continue Reading…

This is my story of a life of abuse… and where it began…

Learning to Trust and Rely on No-One…

As a young child I grew up with only my father and one of my younger sisters, as my mother moved interstate one day with my oldest and youngest sisters and her new husband, unbeknownst to me and my sister. At that stage of my life I was attending primary school around the corner from her house. On the day she moved, I was about 8, I felt very strongly to go to her home. When I got there I saw a removalist truck pulling out with one of my sisters sitting in the front and my mum’s car driving away down the road. I was devastated. I knew this was goodbye and I lost two of my best friends and my mum from right under my nose.

From this I learnt a lot: I decided it was best not to listen to my feelings as they may lead me into great pain, and that just because I was born into a family this did not give me the right to expect to be a part of it, and that you can trust and rely on no-one because at any point in time they can disappear right from under you.

Continue Reading…

Julia Gillard, when Prime Minister, was asked why politicians need to act the way they do in parliament, to which her defensive reply was that this country has been built on fiery debate, that much had been achieved as a result of the cauldron that we know to be parliament. Competition runs deep in every aspect of our society and is treasured as one of the great forces that leads to innovation, evolution, and change. But perhaps the question that should have been posed to Julia Gillard was “How incredible is it that anything has actually been achieved in parliament DESPITE the fiery debate that goes on?”

For what could be achieved if parliamentarians truly worked together? What if we stopped championing competitive debate as the bastion of truth and allowed ourselves to co-operate in unison towards the greater common purpose? Of course to do so would reveal the fact that underneath competition is the insatiable drive of the self-centred individual, who, devoid of the understanding of their own true worth, is desperate to prop up their own self-esteem at the expense of another. Continue Reading…

Have you noticed how many parents instruct their children to smile back or say ‘hello’ when you first meet them?

In my part-time work at a supermarket checkout many families come through every day and I enjoy looking into the eyes of the babies and children because I find that in the way they look at me they are truly seeing me and feeling who I am, exploring who or what is there to be felt. So I look at them and sometimes I can feel that we are truly connected in that moment and nothing more needs to be said or done.

But the parents, wanting their child to ‘be polite’, often instruct the child to smile back or say hello: it feels like they are being asked to perform on behalf of their parents. Continue Reading…

I recently read about a woman’s experience of alcoholism in her family detailing the abuse of alcohol and its ‘second-hand’ effects on her, and as I read I found my eyes darting as if not wanting to read and feel all that was being presented.

As I read the blog I could feel my own agony of living in a familiar feeling – my own household as a young boy would lurch from sunshine to violence through the use and continued abuse of alcohol. Even as I write this I can feel the questioning of that statement – it wasn’t every day, or every week – and this is how we can allow and not claim that even once is too much, and too many times.

Continue Reading…

Being a Black Woman

August 12, 2014 — 235 Comments
Shevon Simon | Being A Black Woman

Shevon Simon “I am coming to know myself again as a woman, beyond being a black woman…”

Being a black woman… what does it mean, and is there any difference to being any ‘other’ kind of woman?

Looking at my life I never thought I had an issue with being a black woman. From a young age I held the strong view that there was nothing that was a barrier for me, and nothing that I couldn’t achieve being a black woman. There was no glass ceiling for me… or so I thought!

What I have come to realise however, is that I have held a solid belief that as a black woman I had to work hard to prove myself, to be seen and accepted in the world. It’s interesting that the very thing that was propelling me forward in life was actually a belief that has been harming me the most. Continue Reading…