[Trigger warning: Non-graphic mention of child abuse and rape, multiplicity]
There are two parts of me that have been in a long drawn-out fight. I’ll call them Blue Girl and Pink Girl. They split and became separate people during a very tumultuous period in our life. The fight was fueled by a divide between parents, and a divide between misguided moral systems.
In one corner is Blue Girl. She tried her best to look normal to the outside world. She sought approval from the “non-abusers” in our life. She kept quiet. She disowned the parts of her that were sexual, that were inappropriate. Both the sexuality that she naturally had as a human being, and the acting out that arose specifically because of the abuse. She was called a goodie-two-shoes, and she was proud of it. She was constantly praised for being smart, creative, and well-behaved. None of her intelligence or creativity was for herself, though. She achieved things specifically for approval. To make up for everything she thought was wrong with her. She hid her femininity and tried to fit the boy mold, eventually becoming one of what we call the “boy fronters”—the put-on male facades that lived our day-to-day life.
In the other corner is Pink Girl, the one who reluctantly stayed with the abuser. She was brazenly sexual, didn’t care what other people thought, was loud and open about her feelings. Unabashedly feminine. She reluctantly stayed with the abuser because it was only in the space of the abuse that she was allowed to be a girl. She was shamed by others both for her femininity and for having any sexual thoughts or feelings whatsoever. She was labeled Bad. Because of how the allegedly “good” people in her life—the supposed “non-abusers”—judged her, she gave up on trying to be good and reveled in being “bad”. There was no way she could win, so she chose the route that allowed her to at least be honest about her feelings. She could be feminine. She could let out the confusing, overwhelming sexual feelings that resulted from the rape. She could find validation for her femaleness–albeit in really messed up ways, such as playing the role of spouse to the abuser. But it was validation. For all this, she became Devil Girl.