“It’s the truth I’m after, and the truth never harmed anyone. What harms us is to persist in self-deceit and ignorance.”

Marcus Aurelius

Recently, social media has been buzzing with news about an Irish soldier who beat a young woman unconscious when she defended a gay man he was assaulting. A feminist protest followed the court’s ruling on this case. I watched various posts on social media about this incident, and it is deeply worrying.

The level of anger and hatred expressed in each post is unbelievable! But that’s not all—there is so much unconscious pain, unresolved trauma, and generational hurt among women, resulting in bitterness, anger, and resentment.

This situation encompasses numerous psychological, moral, political, and social issues, and I will attempt to address each one.

I decided to write this article because my work involves helping people heal from their traumas and empowering women. I am a strong advocate for authentic healing, but what I see on social media regarding this situation is far from that.

Before I proceed, I want to state that what happened to that young woman should never have occurred. I am deeply sorry for what she experienced. Regardless of gender, such violence is traumatic and extremely damaging. This is absolutely unacceptable. I hope that this woman finds peace and can truly heal from this trauma.

The Issues

This situation carries numerous issues on various levels, and viewing it in a simplistic “black and white,” “right and wrong” manner is, at best, childish and immature. I respect that, you don’t have to agree with me on the following points. However, it’s important to recognize that if someone presents a single perspective, they must also understand that other perspectives exist.


What that one Irish soldier did was absolutely psychopathic, homophobic, and sociopathic. However, we are discussing the actions of one man, yet many people are now generalizing this behaviour to all Irish soldiers, which is completely unacceptable.

The Irish Army includes many men who are decent, kind, and respectable individuals. I know this for a fact because I work with several of them. These men do not deserve to be treated with such broad-stroke negativity by anyone.


In one of the posts I read, it stated: “The Defence Forces (Army in Uniform) will not be permitted to participate in Limerick Pride!” What? Why not? Why should men who trained so hard to join the army, dedicated their lives to serving the country, and are proud to be in the Irish Army suddenly be barred from attending Pride in their uniforms? Their uniforms are part of their identity!

Why should they be punished for something they didn’t do? Why should they be penalized by being forbidden to wear their uniforms, something they respect and worked so hard for? This is unjust and discriminatory.

Toxic Conditions

The condition imposed on Irish soldiers regarding their uniforms is tantamount to asking them to relinquish a part of their identity. It demonstrates a lack of acceptance for who they are and what they have worked hard to achieve. This attitude breeds further toxicity and is paradoxical to the values that Pride is supposed to represent.

We need to ask ourselves: what is the purpose of Pride on the 13th of July? My understanding has always been that Pride aims to:

  • Normalize human diversity without prejudice.
  • Let go of shame and accept each other as we are.
  • Spread love rather than hate.
  • Show that we can be different and still love each other.
  • Allow everyone to be authentic and real.
  • Demonstrate acceptance and respect.
  • Ensure that everyone feels a sense of belonging and no one feels isolated.
  • Prove that we are equal and that respect is unconditional.
  • Encourage fun, creativity, and openness.

This condition contradicts all of the above principles by asking Irish soldiers to leave their uniforms behind because they are not permitted to wear them. The entire institution should not be punished for the unacceptable behaviour of one individual.

Control and Separation

When significant, hurtful situations arise, accompanied by various actions or inactions, they often divide people. This division stems from everyone’s unique perceptions of the events, shaped by their experiences and needs. It doesn’t mean anyone is inherently right or wrong; it means everyone seeks validation and recognition.

This separation damages society further, driven by attempts to control people’s opinions and dictate what they should or should not do, say, or think. This is especially true when emotions, grief, and unresolved trauma are involved.

What’s forgotten is how to connect despite the hurt and find unity. Trauma isn’t just what happened to us; it occurs when, after a difficult event, we become separated from ourselves and society. As Dr. Gabor Maté states, “Trauma is always sociable. It’s never individual.” When we create situations where people’s rights are denied and they can’t support each other authentically, we add to and create more trauma. This behaviour does not promote healing. Punishing the innocent is not the path to peace or healing.

Punishment and blame deprive us of true healing and prevent us from receiving love, support, acceptance, and respect.

Unresolved Trauma

The trauma that this young woman experienced is indescribable. The physical and emotional pain she endured is horrendous. From my understanding, the incident occurred two years ago, but the pain she feels is still very much alive, as was evident in the videos.

Trauma causes disconnection from ourselves and others. When trauma is too overwhelming to heal, we often do nothing. We deny, suppress, pretend it doesn’t matter, and lie that it no longer hurts. We push it as far from our consciousness as possible. The emotional pain is so unbearable that we keep running from it, suppressing it to avoid feeling anything. This unresolved trauma, particularly for women who have experienced it at the hands of men, has many consequences.

Generational trauma has affected women for centuries, visible in our grandmothers, mothers, and ourselves. Unresolved trauma transforms into anger, emotional distance, toxic control, fear, coldness, bitterness, and limiting beliefs about men. It impacts our relationships, parenting, trust, and most importantly, our perceptions of ourselves.

Unresolved trauma locks in shame beneath all experiences, causing further disconnection and fear. Trauma deeply wounds us and our souls.


If we truly want to change, make a difference, and heal, we must first look within ourselves. We must genuinely desire change. As Einstein said many decades ago:

“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”

This means that if we want to change, we first need to change how we perceive things. If we want to make a difference, we need to alter our own perceptions.

Consider the situation that occurred. The man who attacked this woman was filled with anger, bitterness, fear, and hatred. Now, look at the posts on social media—what emotions do you see? Exactly. It’s the same energy, just in a different form. The outcome, the punishment, all of it is fueled by anger! But the question is what is underneath this anger? What are we masking?

What resists, persists. It may take a different form, but with such an attitude, nothing will ever change. If we want to see change, we need to change how we look at things. If we want to heal, we need to connect with our vulnerability. And if we want peace and freedom, we need to accept and give choices. If we want justice, we need to be honest with ourselves.

There is no other path to real change.

With Love,

Sylwia Kuchenna

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