Response to Open Letter

I am on FB far too much. So much so, that I often get directed to news from that source than television or any website. The other day, someone posted the Open Letter from Dylan Farrow.

I read it. I took it in. I let it marinate. I didn’t talk about it to anyone, mostly because it’s a ‘downer’ type of subject. No one in my household is necessarily a Woody Allen fan, so it was just not that much of a relative topic. We had other things going on. This morning, sipping my coffee and watching The View, I got real angry.

1. I’ve watched The View on and off since it began umpteen years ago when Barbara Walters was an up and comer at the spry age of only 98.

2. I rarely watch because there are few things more annoying than a bunch of people (Men OR women) sitting around interrupting each other on TV and getting paid for it

3. Whoopi Goldberg, while I appreciate her long list of work, rubs me the wrong way with her smug superiority. Superiority in things such as opinion and point of view. She is being paid a lot of money to discuss those things, but it’s my choice to watch or not to.

4. I love Sherri Shepherd 🙂

So this morning, i’m watching and beyond the importance of the Super Bowl and other ‘trivial’ news, they begin speaking of the open letter Dylan Farrow published. It’s a “Hot Topic”.

My squelched opinion and reaction to the article I had read days before bubbles up to the surface carried by my intolerance of Ms. Walters’ announcement. Of all the egotistical and pompous ignorance. I was livid. She claims that since she has seen for herself the relationship that exists between this man and his current wife – and previous underage step daughter – that is all the evidence she needs to know Ms Farrow’s allegations are invalid. She follows this statement up with something nonchalant like “it had to be said in his defense. just for the record, here’s my opinion.”

Really?!! I’m so comforted in the knowledge that you feel the professional facade and exterior construct this man has created is enough for you to believe his private life is innocent. Imagine that! Someone who is transparent and only speaks truths when his whole livelihood and paycheck depends on the public thinking he is a decent man? We all know, certainly, that pedophiles and perverts walk around with badges claiming their secrets. Their unholy urges and selfish actions are invariably stitched to their foreheads for all to see and know absolutely that they are horribly psychologically malformed monsters.  And absolutely, if questioned, they will come clean and admit all of it!

Yes, Barbara, imagine the horror of the knowledge that a celebrity did not divulge to YOU his deep dark secrets. If it did not occur in one of your numerous interviews, then it must not exist.

Bullshit. BULLshit. BULLSHIT!

Of all the narrow-minded, self righteous, inconsiderate, ego-maniacal points of view.

I hadn’t even lost it at this point yet. I waited. I knew either Jenny McCarthy or Sherri would tread lightly in Babs’ waters and serve up some reality.

Sherri politely and respectfully offers to play Devil’s advocate and says let’s just take into consideration this is a man who established a penchant for younger women by having a relationship with his underage step daughter.

Babs got hot under her righteous Chanel collar and began to show a bit of her true personality. She defended Woody Allen.

Sherri went on to explain her opinion, which I wholeheartedly agree with.

Babs shut it down. .. with the help of the silent Whoopi Goldberg.  The only seasoned actor on the panel who would have perhaps another introspective opinion based on a professional working relationship or encounter. The main voice of The View was silent. The person hired on for her most outspoken and varied opinions on all things sat mute while Barbara shut down the possibility of even an ounce of the character assassination.

That’s when I decided I had an opinion that needed to be put into words for some sort of record.

I feel that this article needs to be taken seriously. This letter containing the words of a woman who had her own life experience as a girl in a home that was not safe. Not safe in the worst unhealthy way. When a child is physically abused, there are bruises most times. Something physically evident of the wrongdoings that are happening in a place that is supposed to be the safest for a child; their home. We rely on teachers and health care workers and countless outsiders to visibly recognize the signs of this and take action.

There are no outward physical absolute signs of sexual abuse, or psychological damage done to children.

Could Dylan Farrow be exaggerating her home life with Woody Allen? She could. Who am I to discount her feelings? Even if he did an ounce of what she claims, is that tolerable? At what level do you feel an environment is unsafe for your child? The bottom line of that information is that she did not feel safe. She felt physically threatened by this man. Somewhere along the line it became clear he was a threat to her. Her mother removed her from that environment. If I remember correctly, Mia Farrow split around the time the affair with the daughter he is now married to came into play. Maybe that was the catalyst for the separation and not her daughter’s need to be removed from the home, but either way, her mother supports her and got the f out of there. And Hollywood is giving him trophies.

That’s enough information for me.

I find it disgusting and intolerable when someone 100% discounts sexual abuse allegations based only on the knowledge of a working relationship with the presumed offender. How idiotic and naive, Barbara Walters. Shame on you.

It’s my understanding most people are skeptical only because of the timing of this letter. He received a lifetime achievement award at the Golden Globes and is going to receive another at the Oscars, and she wants to derail his career somehow and put herself in the spotlight.

Absurdity ensues.

If she wanted the spotlight, she could have just claimed he had an affair with her. Who in the hell wants to be in the spotlight for being sexually abused?! The survivors of such horrors have the opposite problem. They don’t talk! They don’t tell! They are shamed into silence! You know this if you know someone who has gone through it, or you’ve gone through it yourself. People want to know why she stayed silent for so long? It’s embarrassing! It’s humiliating!! It tears apart families and relationships and lives! She probably knew she wouldn’t be believed which was the whole point of her letter.

Simply because this man is a movie-creating maniac who continues to drive the Hollywood train and make millions for himself and ‘the industry’ we should forgive any horrors he has created for the children he is responsible for. He is good at his job, so he should be allowed a few atrocities as long as we don’t have to look them in the eye.

Michael Jackson was vilified during the trials of misconduct with kids. That is, until he died and became a victim of someone else. Why did he then become immortalized as a magnificent megastar who was beyond his time and an idol ?

I think it’s the job of someone like Barbara Walters to not choose sides. You are supposed to have journalistic integrity. At least give voice to both sides, and if you don’t have the courage to do it yourself, don’t squelch the voices of those brave enough to offer it.

I am sorry to Dylan Farrow for any non-support or further harm you will inadvertently receive in the wake of your braveness. Do not let any of that take away from the fact that you are a hero to those people who weren’t brave enough to voice and point out their monsters.

I was never sexually abused as a child, and I pray all the time my children are spared that horror.

I did have more than my fair share of near misses. I had a counselor attempt to find my boundaries of propriety when i was 6. Thankfully my mom arrived to take me home just in time to avoid any further actions. However, I do understand the emotional scars that go along with an unsafe environment. To this day, few people know about the constant barrage of sexually explicit threats and attempts on my body from a close family friend. I endured this from about the age of 12 and up through my teens. My husband knows and supports me, and only a couple of my friends knew. None of them questioned my experience based on not seeing it with their own eyes. He was not a public figure, so I was spared the added shame of being doubted and accused as a liar by the scarcely few I told my secret to. I was not brave enough to step forward and point my finger, so I have to live with seeing photos of this person on news feeds and talked about at certain functions. I see this person standing beside family and friends and I have to wonder if they know his secret too. Did it go any further with someone else?

I hope Dylan Farrow has support around her and that her experience is taken seriously. More seriously than a statue is taken, certainly. If nothing else, she carries the much larger and more coveted prizes of bravery,  honor and self respect.

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