Music is emotion, just as emotion is music. Music is a tool which can be used to make you feel better or worse. I guess this mostly depends on your preferences. I use music to make myself feel stronger, but also to release some of the pent up emotions I'm afraid to unleash. If I can feel through the music, maybe eventually it won't hurt anymore. On the other hand remembering makes me angry and anger gives me strength. I'm a survivor. I survived.
1. Praying - Kesha
"Oh, some say, in life you gonna get what you give. But some things, only God can forgive."
I find this song useful for remembering that what happened and that it wasn't my fault. That life goes on and karma is a bitch. The line which I've chosen as a quote is the part that hits me the most, I guess because of the sheer truth of that statement. I do not believe in God, I am not a religious person, but I cannot forgive what happened to me. I cannot forgive anyone who has done this to another person. But part of me hopes that there is some strong deity out there or even just a stronger, purer person who can forgive this and make it right.
2. Rusted from the Rain - Billy Talent
"Go on, crush me like a flower, rusted from the rain. Come on strip me of my powers, beat me with your chains. And if I'm the King of cowards, you're the Queen of pain."
I chose this one because it shows that men can be victims of abuse too, whether it's domestic, physical or sexual abuse. It's also quite an angry and accusatory song, which appeals to me as I find strength in the anger. The point of this song, I think, is to demand the person to admit responsibility for what they have done and to show them the damage they have caused. I think in order to get closure it's important to lay blame where it belongs, rather than on yourself.
3. My Skin - Natalie Merchant
"I need a lullaby; A kiss goodnight. Angel, sweet love of my life. Oh, I need this. Well, is it dark enough? Can you see me? Do you want me? Can you reach me? Or I'm leaving. You better shut your mouth. Hold your breath. Kiss me now you'll catch your death. Oh, I mean this. Oh, I need this."
For this song, I could have quite easily quoted the whole thing. This song is about the beginning of a relationship, the abuse and the realisation. The realisation that you deserve more and the anger and betrayal that comes with that realisation. I guess the hardest part is that abusive relationships don't start that way. They start the same way any other romantic relationship would; with tender moments, sweet sentiments and friendship. This is why it takes victims of abuse months, sometimes years to cut their loses and head for the hills. It takes a long time to see what is right in front of you in these cases, as you believe every apology mostly because you want to. Then afterwards, when you finally realise it's over, you have to keep convincing yourself this is right and reassuring yourself things will be okay, that you won't be alone forever.
4. Till it Happens to You - Lady Gaga
"Till your world burns and crashes. Till you're at the end, the end of your rope. Till you're standing in my shoes; I don't wanna hear a thing from you, from you, from you. 'Cause you don't know."
One key point to take from this song is that sexual assault, domestic abuse and many other types of trauma can happen to anyone. This includes lower class or high class, women or men, black or white and celebrities. Many people don't expect rich or famous people to have experienced this kind of trauma because of their social status and the amount of confidence they have. Just because someone is famous doesn't mean they have masses of self-esteem or self respect. In fact in some cases it's completely the opposite, as I bet it's rather difficult to tell who you're real friends are when everyone's hovering around you for the publicity. Another main point this song highlights is that unless you've been there yourself, you are very unlikely to be able to understand what someone who has is going through. Even if you're trying to help or comfort them, saying things like 'get it together' or 'you'll be fine' are not only unhelpful, but downright damaging. I beg of you, do not say things like this to people who've been sexually assaulted as it just makes things worse and makes you sound like an idiot.
5. Angels - Within Temptation
"Sparkling angel. I couldn't see your dark intentions. Your feelings for me. Fallen angel. Tell me "why?". What is the reason? The thorn in your eye. I see the angels. I'll lead them to your door. There's no escape now. No mercy no more. No remorse 'cause I still remember. The smile when you tore me apart. This world may have failed you. It doesn't give you reason why. You could have chosen a different path of life."
This is another which I could have just quoted the entire song. The song tells a story, a story of a girl who meets a boy who didn't turn out to be who she thought he was. It touches on a few issues that are close to my heart, having been there myself. It's asking why, why did this person who you trusted and likely loved hurt you so badly? Did you do something to deserve it? Is it your fault for annoying them in someway? Could you have done something different? It takes a long time to realise that in all honesty it's not your fault. You probably couldn't have done anything different, things would most likely have ended exactly the same way they have regardless of what you did differently. Secondly it's that no matter what has happened in their past, it doesn't excuse what they're doing to you. Most abusers have generally been abused themselves or gone through some other sickening trauma, it's called the cycle of abuse and it happens a lot. This might explain it, but it doesn't excuse it. Not in any circumstances. These people need time to help themselves to come to terms with what has happened to them and deal with their own issues before they can be in a relationship. In some ways I can't help but feel sorry for them, to be so messed up inside by what's happened to you that the only way to make yourself feel better is to take people down with you. People that love you. So please, if there's even a chance you may become one of these people (and even if not) seek professional help.