It is presumptuous of any man to assume the mantle of speaking for all men, or any segment of men. However, most men are able to speak concerning issues endured by women as a result of male figures; manhood. From sexual abuse and molestation, to physical abuse and drug addiction, to neglect and abandonment, men are more often than not the precipitating factors which placed women in these very damaging situations; I’m sorry for this, and ask for your forgiveness on my manhood participation.
There are always "whys" and "reasons" that such actions are perpetrated upon women, the nurturers of humanity; however, they are never justifiable. Mental illness, sexual addiction, pornography addiction, esteem issues, relationship dysfunction, being abused, neglected, abandoned, mistreated by women, or just being raised with a zero sense of morality - all inexcusable reasons for men to mistreat the sustainers and nurturers of humanity, women.
All of that being said, the reality of such abuse cannot be denied. While no man can apologize for another man, or for all men, all men can apologize for the insensitivity of manhood. No matter how "in tune" we feel or believe we are to the pain, and trauma of women, our insensitivity is evident in our daily interaction with women. From our unwillingness to give up our seat on the train or bus to a woman, to our insistence that women "know their place," to how we treat (or do not treat) our wife or lady, or mother, or sisters, or daughters, our duplicity is glaring.
All abuse is abuse to the abused. Abuse of neglect, abuse of personal space invasion, and mental abuse, is all abuse to the one being subjected to the abuse.
Yes, apologies are in order! At the same time, acceptance of apologies is also a needed conduit if the abused is really going to find healing. Women must never allow themselves to place their life on hold because a perpetrator has not offered up an apology. Seek independent assistance to do the reaffirming work needed, and then move forward with your awesomely wonderful and beautiful self!
I’m confident that with all of the women each man comes in contact with throughout the course of his life there is any number of women who has felt some level – along the wide spectrum of abuse labels – of abuse as a result of some action on his part. So, all men owe womanhood and some specific woman as well, an apology. Again, I offer my sincere apology to any, and all women wounded as some result of my action or non-action.
Women, when the apology comes, either accept it or reject it, but then move forward. Don’t allow yourself to be stuck in bitterness, hatred, or vengeance. You deserve better than to give a man power over your happiness simply because he was too: vicious, sick, careless, hateful, mean, or any number of the other maladies that can be named, to apologize.
I am sincerely sorry for any and all hurt and pain caused to any woman as a result of any action of mine; real, imagined or over-stated. I hurt at the thought that I have hurt any woman and have not offered my sincere apology for it. Me hurting you was never an intentional act, but had to have been an act of ignorance.
From my: long deceased mother, to my wife, sisters, daughters, mother-in-law, god-daughter, and female friends, I am confident that I have wounded each in some manner. I have always been quick to say "I’m sorry." I take this moment to repeat that refrain; I am sorry!
Please be overwhelmingly aware of my love and respect for yours, and all womanhood. Women, you are the best that God has made. No issue and no situation can change the beauty that is uniquely you. You are strong, loving, and nurturing; you are woman!
In her book series, "Embracing Me," Stacie Harris not only shares her own poignant, painful, and victorious story, she also attempts to use her story, and the letters of apology dispersed throughout the series from men, to inspire, encourage, motivate, and direct other women to, themselves, embrace healing.
Through the letters penned here, and in her other books in this series, it is hoped that this project ushers in a cathartic era for many, if not all, women who find themselves stuck in their pain as a result of never hearing "sorry" from the person they believe caused their pain.
Take this journey! Travel through the pages of this book! Read the letters! Read Stacie’s personal story of her "Hell & Heaven" from book one, and about her "Tears" in book two. Mourn her "Death at 24" in book three, and then share her "Awakening" in book four. I’m confident that not only will Stacie’s personal memoir touch your heart, and prod your instincts, but you will also find one, or many, letters in the series that will strike a powerful chord within your spirit that will provoke your emotions to react. Don’t be afraid of reacting, and of acting; it’s the non-action that has kept you stuck.
Be healed! Be set free from the issues of your past that has held you in bondage. You are not the product of abuse. You are not the offspring of destruction. You are not the memory of a mistake. You are the chosen of God. You are called to do wonderful exploits in His name. You are strong, beautiful, nurturing, and amazing; I am sorry for anything I have done to make you feel otherwise. I am sorry for anything manhood has done to hinder your growth, or blind your view.
Forgive me! Forgive manhood! Embrace your womanhood! Make the declaration today by screaming with your loudest inner voice, "Today, I am "Embracing Me!"
Go Master The Day,
Dr. Allen C. Barham, Sr.(Dr. B)