Our tentative and groping words

"Women have been driven mad, 'gaslighted,' for centuries by the refutation of our experience and our instincts in a culture which validates only male experience. The truth of our bodies and our minds has been mystified to us. We therefore have a primary obligation to each other: not to undermine each others' sense of reality for the sake of expediency; not to gaslight each other.

"Women have often felt insane when cleaving to the truth of our experience. Our future depends on the sanity of each of us, and we have a profound stake, beyond the personal, in the project of describing our reality as candidly and fully as we can to each other...

"Truthfulness anywhere means a heightened complexity. But it is a movement into evolution. Women are only beginning to uncover our own truths; many of us would be grateful for some rest in that struggle, would be glad just to lie down with the sherds we have painfully unearthed, and be satisfied with those. Often I feel this like an exhaustion in my own body.

"The politics worth having, the relationships worth having, demand that we delve still deeper.

...

"It isn't that to have an honorable relationship with you, I have to understand everything, or tell you everything at once, or that I can know, beforehand, everything I want to tell you.

"It means that most of the time I am eager, longing for the possibility of telling you. That these possibilities may seem frightening, but not destructive, to me. That I feel strong enough to hear your tentative and groping words. That we both know we are trying, all the time, to extend the possibilities of truth between us.

"The possibility of life between us."

– Adrienne Rich
"Women and Honor: Some Notes on Lying"

3 comments:

Erin 11/05/2011 10:36 AM  

really love these passages.

Holly 11/05/2011 10:53 AM  

Erin - I'm glad -- I do too (obv). I'm scanning the whole essay for Belle; I'll send it to you too if you like.

Erin 11/05/2011 7:04 PM  

yes please!

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

  © Blogger templates Brooklyn by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP