When she’s not serving as Board Secretary, Angie Remington is the Deputy Director for the Nebraska Civic Engagement Table, an organization that works with nonprofits to increase voting and build civic engagement.
Why Angie Got Involved:
I became involved with Survivors Rising in March 2017 after seeing an announcement for Speakers Bureau training. I attended the training, and after learning that SR was a new and growing organization, I asked how I could volunteer my time and expertise as someone with many years of nonprofit experience, and with experience launching a new organization.
Why She Was Drawn to Survivors Rising Work:
When I saw the Speakers Bureau training announcement, I was only six months out from a relationship and just beginning to process the extent of the emotional abuse and physical violence I had experienced. I always thought I was a person who would know if I was being abused or mistreated in any way, and so I wasn’t sure if I belonged at the training. The relationship had left me feeling inhuman and completely stripped of my dignity, and as I was beginning to tell other people the truth that I had kept hidden, I saw their horror, and I began to realize that what I had endured was not healthy and not OK.
At that Speakers Bureau training when I told the story of how I was slowly trained to doubt myself, doubt my value, my instincts, my feelings, and my worth, I realized that this was part of a process that every other woman in the room recognized and had experienced, and it was incredibly affirming. I learned that day that I could trust my own perception of the experience and that was very powerful.
The most meaningful part to Angie:
As part of the Speakers Bureau, I discovered that I can use my gift of writing and communication to convey the process of emotional abuse, to explain how even someone like me who “thought she would know” can begin to believe the lies someone else tells you about yourself.
I learned that I am good at helping others understand how instilling self-doubt is an abuser’s tactic to trap you in the cycle of abuse because you are never quite sure whether you can believe what you are experiencing. After one speaking engagement, I had a student approach me and thank me for speaking because he realized that something, he had experienced, that he had been made to believe was “normal,” was actually very violent. And that was the first time he had said that out loud.
Your BIG HOPE/DREAM for Survivors Rising in 2019:
It’s heartbreaking that we continue to hear from so many new people who have experienced domestic and sexual violence, stalking, and harassment, but I am so glad SR has taken the time to build a strong organization that can continue to support survivors. I remember how powerful it was to be around other survivors for the first time 2 years ago, and I hope we can continue to provide that sense of community and affirmation for survivors for years to come.
One idea/thought/wisdom Angie wants to share:
One of the worst things someone can do to you is make you doubt your own instincts. A friend told me once that when you feel that ‘ugh’ feeling in your gut, as if you have just encountered something really gross, that’s your body telling you to be disgusted. And if you encounter something disgusting, don’t make excuses for it. Don’t offer to clean it up for someone else. Don’t tell yourself you are just imagining it. It’s there, and it’s not your fault.
What she enjoys in your spare time:
Ha, one thing I have learned over the past few years is to prioritize time for things that make me feel good. I enjoy biking immensely, and hiking as well. I am teaching myself to oil paint. I play guitar and write songs. I like to cook sometimes (and sometimes I don’t and that’s OK too). I love taking mirror selfies in interesting places. I have two children, a cat, a dog, and a surprisingly friendly hamster, and I enjoy loving them and receiving their love and affection.
Founded in 2016, Survivors Rising is dedicated to advocacy, education, and support for survivors of sex trafficking, sexual exploitation, sexual assault, domestic/dating violence and stalking. Our mission is to advocate and empower survivors and ensure the survivor voice is represented in prevention, policy, service provision and offender accountability. We are committed to working with survivors to provide hope and tools for healing and to providing survivor engagement in all aspects of our communities.