With Friends Like This…. An Open Letter to my Hater(s)

Debbie Hatch | Family & F.I.T.

In spite

I am not editing this.  I am not censoring this.  It is raw.  It is emotional.  It makes me angry, but it also needs to be said.


It was one week ago today.  I had spent the day showing some family members around DC.  We enjoyed dinner at my favorite Italian restaurant in Georgetown.  I posted a picture of my daughter-in-law and I having cannoli and moscato for our appetizer.  On the ride home, I read the first PM – it contained the picture of Ashleigh and I at dinner.

1st Msg





To say that the message surprised me is a complete understatement!!  Yet, I crafted a tactful and well thought out response.






My message #2

My childhood sucked.  It sucked.  I was emotionally, sexually, and physically abused.  That’s no longer a secret.

My first blog, ever, was written about this. That was hard to write!!  It was harder to share!!  I was shaking and crying when I hit post that day.  But – I did post it.  I have talked about it.  I learned, in years of counseling, to journal my thoughts, as a means to get them out – and then deal with them.

My sisters were there.  They are the reason I stood up.

My husband and my children know.  It’s hard for them.

The people who truly care about me, know. They’ve been a tremendous source of support and love for me over the years.

In addition to the things going on at home, I was a loner in school.  Unable to participate in any after school activities, or hang out with friends, I was not popular.  I was the last person to be chosen in gym class – not actually chosen, but going to the team who had’t made the last choice.  Yes, that was me!  The Big Bang Theory makes nerds seem cool.  It definitely wasn’t cool!!  Many people called me, “Bucky Beaver”.  A few called me names that weren’t so kind.  I’ve been pushed down stairs and had rocks thrown at me, while at school.

At 17, I told my story to teachers, police officers, counselors, and the Grand Jury.  That was just a tiny bit traumatic.  I’ve spent time “dealing with my shit.”


Here’s what you need to remember though.  That was the START of my life!!  That is not my life.


Yes, I have excelled.  Professionally, personally, educationally, and emotionally.

My passion, all along, has been to help others and I’ve done that too!!  I am doing that.  I don’t do that by lamenting over what happened to me.  I don’t do that by living in the past.


We all have a past – every single one of us.  My shit might have been different than yours, but we all have shit.


My past is what happened to me.  It is not who I am.


Msg 1002



I thought my message might be enough to get her to reconsider what she had said, but that wasn’t the case.  In fact, it just seemed to add fuel to some fire I wasn’t even aware was burning.


I did not respond any further.




But her messages kept coming.  Last msg

I did not unfriend her on Facebook either but, by morrning – I’m sure, angry that I refused to engage further, she had unfriended me.


2012 Message



This person has not seen me in over 30 years!  She has not spoken a single word to me in 3 years, and at that point, she was acting like a friend.







I’m confused about what even started this series of messages.  It was a picture of me eating cannoli.  It had nothing to do with exercise – yet, that’s what she hung her argument on.  There was a time (when I was competing a few years ago) that I did 2-3 hours of exercise every day.  That hasn’t been the case in years.

….and, whether I exercise or not.  How much I exercise.  Why I exercise.  What time of the day I exercise, is  nobody’s business except my own.

I am a grown woman and I do not need to provide justification to anyone – except, potentially the one man who has shared my life for the past 25 years.  He’s not asking for an explanation.




I’ve gone back and forth, over the past week, about whether I would share this story or not.  Clearly, my final decision WAS to share.  Here’s why:

I will not

These are my sisters hands. They know who I am; and I know them.

No excuse, in my opinion, no matter what this other person might be going through, would justify such unprovoked cruelty.

What she said is an unsubstantiated and judgmental lie.

I was bullied for much of my life and it was successful because, like a “good” victim, I kept my mouth shut.

I am no longer a victim.  I am no longer a scared little girl.

I am a strong, passionate, caring, kick-ass, capable woman.  I will no longer keep secrets for bullies.  They have little power unless we give it to them.





Even in my life story, people have asked me, “Not to talk about it.  Not to bring it up.”  Why?  “Because it’s almost ‘too real’.  It’s uncomfortable for people to hear about.”

Well, that’s just too bad.

It’s a real story.  I am a real person.  A super quick Google search this morning, showed that more than half of ALL sexual assaults happen to children 17 and under, the median age of victims is 9 (I was 10) and 30% of victims never tell a soul.  I am special but I am (sadly) not that unique.


I have worked, and worked, and worked, to finally get to a place where I felt like I am good enough.  That’s only been the last couple of years – I have shared that journey with you, and held many of your hands as you’ve traveled your path.  I will not let anyone – friend, or someone who has no idea what I’ve been through over my life – tell me that I am not good enough to help other people.  I will never, again, accept that I am not good enough to be me.  Unapologetically me.  Scars and all.






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    • Patti P on October 3, 2015 at 14:24
    • Reply

    I am sorry for what you have had to endure. May you find the strength you need.

    1. I have, Patti. Thank you so much.

  1. The person who contacted you out of the blue and eventually unfriended you – such a douche !! They must have realised just how immature and pathetic they came across by digging up the past ‘randomly’ and trying to get a reaction out of you.

    You handled yourself well and at the end of the day – it’s your life. What you do / how you choose to live it is nobodys’ business except your own.

    Thank you for expressing such personal details about yourself on my blog comment. You are a survivor and that’s something to be proud of.

    1. Thank you, sincerely!!!! For taking the time to read my blog but, more importantly, for providing your comments and support.

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