Your NAASCA Newsletter: for survivors / activists | Jan 2021
see the message from Bill Murray, founder / CEO
January's Newsletter Theme:
"Visualizing a Brighter Future"
New! FIVE Helpful Articles! Look Inside!

a non profit 501(c)3

Because of you and our simple MISSION, more
kids are being protected, more adult survivors served!

NAASCA has a single purpose, to address issues related to childhood abuse and trauma including sexual assault, violent or physical abuse, emotional traumas and neglect .. and we do so from two specific perspectives:

  • educating the public, especially as related to getting society over the taboo of discussing childhood sexual abuse, presenting the facts that show child abuse to be a pandemic, worldwide problem that affects everyone

  • offering hope for healing through numerous paths, providing many services to adult survivors of child abuse and information for anyone interested in the many issues involving prevention, intervention and recovery

Building a survivor / activist / professional community ... because together we can do what we cannot do alone.

Welcome to the Jan 2021 NAASCA Newsletter

from NAASCA's NEW Newsletter Editor: Kara Smith

Thank you for subscribing to our monthly newsletter !
Please encourage others to get in touch by suggesting they


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This month's newsletter theme is:

'Visualizing a Brighter Future'

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Upcoming January Dates

  • National Birth Defects Prevention Month
  • National Stalking Awareness Month
  • National Human Trafficking Awareness Month

Jan 01: New Year's Day
Jan 07: Orthodox Christmas
Jan 09: Law Enforcement Appreciation Day
Jan 11: Human Trafficking Awareness Day
Jan 14: Orthodox New Year
Jan 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Jan 20: Inauguration Day
Jan 27: Tu Bishvat starts
Join NAASCA's Public and/or Closed groups on Facebook!!

Or, if you prefer, join our LinkedIn group!

We're building a survivor / activist community!
Mike-250
NEW TOOL -- Help us procure SCAN 'special guests'

There's a new tool on the front page of our web site at www.NAASCA.org !

It should help us find 'special guests' for upcoming episodes of our popular "Stop Child Abuse Now" (SCAN) talk radio shows.

Now, just below the schedule of this week's guests, is a list marked clearly in GRAY of the NEXT 5 OPEN DATES for 'special guest' episodes (which we produce on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays).

NAASCA family member Pamela Lockridge will coordinate this new effort.

Please write to her for scheduling info: lock14@bellsouth.net

Please .. help Pamela fill in the blanks ahead of time. Too often we find ourselves with a need to book open slots on an emergency basis.

And remember, we want to have a combination of new people who've never told their child abuse trauma and recovery story, as well as returning previous guests.

One need not yet be a member to appear on the show. We have a single purpose at NAASCA, to address issues related to childhood abuse and trauma including sexual assault, violent or physical abuse, emotional traumas and neglect.

Each of us can be of service to the adult survivor community by honestly telling our story, and it especially makes an impression on the newcomer.

Please pass this message on. Especially important is to SHARE it in other groups and non-NAASCA organizations which share a similar mission.

~~~~

Bill Murray, founder / CEO

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NAASCA’s "Stop Child Abuse Now" (SCAN) shows are broadcast live 5 nights a week, Monday through Friday, LIVE at 8pm EST (so 5pm PST) for 90 minutes, at this link: www.BlogTalkRadio.com/NAASCA

The dedicated call-in number is: 646-595-2118
Deb Ferguson
"Leave Your Past
(and 2020) Behind You"
Use 2021 to Visualize Your Future
and Make It Happen.
If anything could go wrong, 2020 showed that it would.
For survivors, like us, the mere thought of being locked into our homes with our penitential abusers triggered every fear we ever had. 2020, and all its moments, may have been the worst year of any survivor’s life. The pure helplessness that maybe we were free, but there were kids out there that had no escape and there was nothing we could do, was enough to throw many of us into a depression that we had to claw our way out of.

But something good came from 2020. We did claw out, and now 2020 is over. The good that came is the opportunity to know that we are not victims anymore. We are survivors. And as survivors, we have a voice. Our voice can help one person. And it can help millions. And no matter how many it helps, it is a strong, powerful, and helpful voice.

So, as we begin our new year, let’s visualize what the year can bring. Then, make it happen. See the possibilities. As survivors, it is essential we fight against helplessness and despair. Advocate for others who are victimized now. Use your knowledge and voice to speak up when you know they cannot.

More importantly, today is the day you say to yourself that you will never be a victim again. You will not be a victim of an abuser. You will not be a victim of circumstances. You will not be the victim of a pandemic.

Instead, you are and always will be a survivor. And you will not be silent while allowing anyone or anything take that from you.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life. So, look at the life and determine what you want your future to be. Then, make it happen. Because you are strong. You are a survivor. And you will be heard!

And remember, if you need a little help (as we all do at times) your friends at NAASCA are here to help!

~~~~

Deb Ferguson, NAASCA volunteer

"Five Lessons COVID-19 Taught Me in 2020"

Like sand that shifts and disappears beneath the current of the sea, 2020 has slipped into the past. For many, it was a year of grief and loss. Some experienced a slower rhythm of day-to-day living. while others were thrust into a milieu of struggle—financial difficulty, social unrest, or fear and loneliness.

While 2020 will be always be known as the "Year of COVID-19," I believe there are some valuable lessons I’ve gleaned that I can apply to the new year: 

1. People are my most valuable investment.
As the Coronavirus leapt from China to mainland Europe and the United States, the global economy crashed—twice. Bank accounts and investments dipped as the bear market took hold.

But COVID-19 reminded me that while I appreciate the comforts of material goods, they are not my focus. When danger knocks at the door, I’m more concerned about who is with me rather than what surrounds me. It’s the people around me that matter—not the possessions.

2. I can’t control much, but I can control the "off" button.
Life grew darker when the words pandemic and social distancing were introduced. It was as if people agreed to a cosmic temper tantrum as they assaulted one another on social media and in the streets. The world seemed to have spun out of control.
 
When lockdown forced life to exist behind the solitary walls of my home, I discovered the joy of the “off” button. The bickering and badgering, riots and rebellion could all be shut out with the simple click of my thumb. I no longer allow the images on the screen to drive fear into my heart because I believe, as Corrie Ten Boom once said, “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.”
 
3. Everybody struggles.
I’d moved out of the classroom and had stopped to pick up some materials at the school. Gesturing to the other teachers in the group, a friend of mine said, “Don’t even ask how we’re doing.” Her words probably represent the way a lot of people felt during the last several months.
 
Any day is a good day to pick up the phone, send a text, write a letter, or invite someone over for a cup-of-socially-distanced-coffee.
 
4Living simply creates less stress.
My children, husband, and I each bent over a computer or tablet—our fingers nimbly moving over individual keyboards until we gathered in the kitchen for lunch. Both Dave and I were working from home since the virus had infected our community while our two teenagers spent their mornings completing lessons online.
 
Sporting events, clubs, and even church had been canceled. There was no mad dash to the car or frantic searching for keys. Staff meetings were piped directly to the study or dining room table while a load of laundry finished the rinse cycle.
 
This was living made simpler. Slower. Sweeter.
 
5. Choose contentment.
Because life was stripped of its adornments centralized around the home, I could either choose to focus on what I didn’t have—the special celebration in Rome my husband and I had planned for a year, a surprise birthday party for my father, speaking engagements to encourage women’s hearts—or find contentment in what remained—personal faith and the fellowship of family.
 
Adversity has a way of refining us, and if we allow it, can strengthen our character. Despite the trials of 2020, I am convinced that few things are more worthwhile than learning a life of contentment. If I can manage that, buoyed by faith in the company of those I love, then 2021 will prove to be a much brighter year.
  
P.S. Want to find hope in your inbox?
Request the monthly message at www.tammykennington.com

~~~~

Tammy Kennington, NAASCA Volunteer 
"2021: Write Your Own Story"
As we walk into the new year, I believe all of us can agree 2020 has been a year of loss and lessons. For some of us, our coping tools with stress have had to change since being on lockdown.
In most parts, we haven’t been able to just go shopping, out to eat, or the gym.

Personally, it has changed me. I find myself walking with an emotional limp. I’ve lost and I’ve gained, but in the realization of it all, I realize how important it is to envision a better tomorrow. None of us are going to be the same, but with 2021, here we are at a fork in the road. We can let it make us bitter or better. I choose better.

I envision us overcoming this virus and slowly rebuilding our lives how we want to live them. We must not lose hope because where there is life, there is endless possibilities.

I remember as a child my hopes and dreams are what kept me alive and I fought to make them a reality. Now, more than ever, we need to get back to those hopes and dreams. It’s never too late start a new chapter. And the awesome thing is you can write your own story.

NAASCA is a family of courageous men and women who have refused to give up. Now, more than ever, we need to lean on our family when in need and reach out to those in need. Let’s bring in this new year together carrying each other’s hopes and dreams.

I’ll dream for you if you’ll dream for me!

~~~~

© Malisia (Mia) McKinney
 


"The Biggest Lesson I’ve Learned From This Year That I Will Carry Into 2021"
I think if I had to sum up 2020 in one word, it would be “suffering."
It has been a year of various types of suffering, whether it be emotional, psychological, financial, or physical.

The world we live in is a world that I never imagined in my wildest dreams. I used to watch apocalyptic shows with my husband and roll my eyes at the outlandish plot...a deadly virus wipes out everyone - ha! Who knew that would somewhat resemble our reality?

As child abuse survivors, we each have experienced our own type of suffering. We all were helpless to the abuse, and there was no positive thinking that could change that. For many of us, this year has also been a year of feeling unsafe. The difference is that there are positive lessons that I’ve learned from this year that I can take with me into the next year to help me visualize a brighter future. 

This year has made me truly reflect on life in a way that I had never done before. It is in that spirit that I will discuss the biggest lesson that I’ve taken away from this year.

Moving into 2021, I have learned to truly appreciate the people I have in my life. We are all overwhelmed with responsibilities and struggling to make it through the day. As a result, it is perfectly understandable that we sometimes take the ones we love for granted. That is, until we don’t have them anymore. 

My husband’s grandmother unexpectedly passed away due to COVID, and both of my in-laws still struggle with their health daily since contracting the virus 9 months ago. These terrible circumstances forced me to realize a hard truth- the people we have today may not be there tomorrow. 

It is easy to forget that what matters most are the people we carry in our hearts. So often we say, “If only I would have known _____, I would have done________ differently.” There are times when we mean to call but get distracted, the incidences where we could have said “I love you” one more time, but didn’t, the times we could have reached out to check on a friend or loved one to see how they were feeling, but forget. Life gets in the way; it happens to all of us.
 
This year is different though. We now have a constant reminder that time is fleeting. We cannot turn on a computer or watch the news without seeing the latest death count. The clock is ticking, and now, more than ever, we need to seize the moment so we don’t look back and wish we had done things differently.

Moving into 2021, I am going to try to remember to focus my attention on prioritizing the people in my life over my to-do list. I will leave the dishes in the sink a little longer, go a few days extra without doing the laundry, and even let my husband get away with not putting his dirty clothes in the hamper

At the end of the day, my clean house is not what matters. I still have responsibilities that I need to fulfill as a grown-up, but I want to spend as much of my time as I can on having no regrets. What matters most is my daughter's infectious laugh, my husband’s embrace, and the people that I love. 

I am going to do my best to live in the moment. I want to savor the time and memories I create with the ones I love. Those memories will stay close to my heart and will shed light whenever there is any darkness in the upcoming year. 

I cannot control what happened to me in my past, just as I cannot control the pandemic. What I can control is how I choose to spend my time and energy. I decide to close the door on my past and on 2020, and to open the door to creating a brighter present and future.
 
A previous version of this article was originally published on Surviving Mom Blog.

~~~~

Randi B. Latzman

NAASCA's Grateful to All Our Members & Volunteers !

We Need YOU!

We Need Each Other!

Fighting For Kids,
Serving Adult Survivors
Did you know that NAASCA is entirely staffed by non-paid volunteers including the Board of Directors?

All the services, programs, tools, resources, and social media efforts that we offer entirely FREE to anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world are staffed by volunteers from our NAASCA family!

It literally would not be possible without YOU.

There are many ways you can volunteer with NAASCA. If you have a little time or a lot, your help is greatly appreciated and needed. Check out our list of available positions here:



Have You Listened to Our Talk Radio Show Lately ?

Monday through Friday evenings we broadcast an internet-based live streaming talk show. This is one of the best FREE SERVICES we offer to our NAASCA members!

All shows start at 8pm EST (so that's
7pm CEN, 6pm MTN & 5pm PAC)


We really want to hear from you!


Anyone can participate or just listen to the show by calling:

(646) 595-2118

Are You a Survivor of Child Abuse Looking for Support?

In need of support in your local community?

NAASCA provides listings for your local area in our Recovery Groups and Services page. We have gathered ALL the English speaking recovery groups and services we can find, not only in North America but from around the world. This list can connect you with numerous agencies, therapy, support groups and other resources in your local area.

Looking for support after hours or from home?

Can't find a group you can get to easily or want to connect when it is after business hours? Needing a way to talk about your story but want to stay anonymous? We also provide a link to another separate listing for Online Groups and Services, for Internet-based recovery groups.

As you can imagine, keeping this listing current and updated is a huge task. You can help other survivors find the support they need.

Submit updates for the 'Recovery Groups List' to Carolin O'Hara:

Submit any updates for the 'Online Resource List' to Valerie:

You are not alone, and never have to be, a day at a time!


All members of NAASCA are part of our 'NAASCA family', and that's not just something we say. We care about each other and that includes YOU.

We want you to feel comfortable reaching out to any of our volunteers, with any of your questions about what NAASCA offers, or for help navigating the website.

Even if you simply want someone to talk to when you are dealing with a difficult moment in your recovery as a survivor... we are here for you.

Some are listed as night owls, some as available 24/7, others are part of our International community, still others are young or helping some specific types of survivors. Try it!
A Note from Our Founder and CEO:
Healing from child abuse and trauma can be a very lonely journey .. but you'll never be alone again, a day at a time, if you don't want to be !!
NAASCA belongs to no other group and receives no outside funding. We're self-supporting through our own members' voluntary contributions.
Please consider a one time
or recurring donation.
Thanking you for all you do in the fight against child abuse and trauma and welcoming you to engage with your NAASCA family, I remain, as always,

Yours in service,

Bill Murray, Founder and CEO
National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse.  
NAASCA | a 501(c)(3) | 323 / 552-6150 | Bmurray3d@aol.com | NAASCA.org