May 2, 2019

My wife Michella and I watched and discussed as we watched an incredibly well done British drama series, a crime-drama starring Nicola Walker and Sanjeev Bhaskar police detectives named Unforgotten. They’re working a historical crime, almost 40 years prior to the present day. It’s a PBS Masterpiece Series which are always well done, and I’ve been watching most of the life in some form.

An “abuse warning,” this particular season uncovers the sexual abuse, and assault of several children, who are now the characters as adults. The story presents wreckage, the damage we don’t see under the surface that many carry from trauma, the emotional, physical, and spiritual disintegration.

The characters survived by any means they could, the life they were living was a prison, with either self-imposed solitary confinement, they struggled to allow affection and closeness or the waiting for the shoe, whatever pain was happening next, a life sentence of shame, guilt, and debilitating pain.

In recovery, and even more emotional I’ve heard 50, 60, 100 times the same stories of trauma over and over. Some have people who cared enough to try to help, some very sadly didn’t, but those people who did try to intervene but didn’t know how to ask or how to support the situations.

ASK, keep asking, then ask again, and TRY, keep trying, later try again, we can’t take any chances with those who are hurting, assume they are, please help, then help still, and again. We can’t stop trying to ask, are you alright, how are you today, is everything alright.

The program was emotional to watch, candidly hard at times, I just felt for the realistically scripted lives of the characters unraveling, purely emotional and raw pain portrayed. It was a reminder to pay attention, ask uncomfortable questions, and be compassionate to those we encounter, we don’t know the weight someone else is carrying much less for how long.

I was compelled to share the experience this evening because it profoundly struck me.