“An Unintentional Gift from viewer #272”
Gifts come in all shapes and sizes, and sometimes as a lesson to be shared. You see I did a very scary thing November 4, 2017. I stood on a TEDx stage and shared my story of child sexual abuse. “Healing Sexual Abuse Can Start With One Word”
My YouTube video was being shared and circulated by friends and family and I received praise for my courage. I was honored and filled with gratitude that they shared my video and then I read a post from a fellow speaker. They posted that their video had over 500K views. At that moment my EGO took over and I forgot my WHY. I was devastated that my views were only at 271.
It’s hard to admit that I was envious of their number and a bit embarrassed that my views were so low. I worked hard on my talk. I hired a coach and spent months preparing for that day. I had an Idea Worth Spreading and in the wake of the #MeToo movement with Harvey Weinstein and Roy Moore it was definitely time for my message.
I thought perhaps my fellow speaker hired a PR firm to help them get views or perhaps they have a large following already. I was told you could purchase views to help rank your video higher in the YouTube realm. It did cross my mind that perhaps I should try that too.
Whatever the truth is in how this person received so many views, I was brought back to my WHY by viewer #272 when I received his email. I hope you take the time to read his “Unintentional Gift” that brought me back to my WHY! Perhaps it will help You remember yours…..
Hi Rena —
My name is (Male Survivor). You don’t know me, but I just finished watching your TEDx Ocala talk on the TED YouTube channel. I am viewer #272. Your message was incredibly powerful and one that needs to be spread throughout the world. It took incredible courage to get up there, on the TEDx stage, and tell your story. Bravo to you.
Your story is very similar to my own. Like you, I was sexually abused as a kid. And like you, I waited decades to tell anyone. When I was ready, in my early forties, I found a great therapist and dealt with the issues caused by the abuse. While it was not exactly the most pleasant experience of my life, it worked. It must have, I mean I am e-mailing you, a random TEDx speaker who I do not know, to tell you my story. And I am doing it without any feelings of pain or shame or anger. There is no way I could have done that a couple years ago.
So why am I writing this e-mail? To tell you that whether you knew it or not, you spoke for all of us survivors. You spoke words that I have thought so many times over the past few years. So, for that I just wanted to say “Thank You” and “I am proud of you.”
I will leave you with one last thing…. My favorite quote is from the actress Diane Ladd who said: “If I can help one person in this world, then it’s enough, and I’ve done my job.” Well, Rena, you have done your job.
All the best,
A Fellow Male Survivor
With tears of Joy and a heart filled with gratitude, Thank YOU Viewer #272 for reminding me of my WHY. Your words are the best Gift a Gal could receive this Holiday Season. It’s not how many views my video gets, it’s important that the people who need to hear my message receive it.
Well, Fellow Male Survivor, you have done your job! I shall let the views grow organically. Thank you for my Beautiful Gift and bringing me back to my WHY!
All the best to You!