This disturbing image probably evokes as many different interpretations as there are people who look at it.
It could mean a lot of things to a lot of people.
It reminds me of a friend who was just telling me that she is learning to be assertive. Many families of origin, and even society, metaphorically clamp powerful hands (psychologically or even physically) over our mouths to keep us silent and passive.
Predatory or Narcissistic parents, leaders, business owners, pastors, service providers, educators, and politicians are all too eager to jam their agendas down our throats. At our expense and their gain. By any means necessary. So it is important for us to find our voices and resist becoming prey.
My voice was squelched from a very young age. Having untreated Bipolar Disorder, I was vulnerable to being silenced by the big ugly hands of shame, bullying, and passive aggressive cruelty. This young lady’s tears resonate deeply within me, as I recall how much pain I felt.
But a human being’s feelings can only be suppressed for so long. In my early 20’s, mine exploded into rage. I was a very angry, aggressive, explosive person for a number of years.
It has taken me 25 years on a path of Recovery to learn to act with assertiveness. To act rather than react. Sometimes the situation calls for assertive action and sometimes I practice restraint and move on.
Yet occasionally I get triggered and feel that those metaphorical hands are silencing my pain and me again. At those times, the rage returns. Thank God that today I have the tools to manage it.