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sexual abuse as a child
November 4, 2000
1:21 am
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Ryn
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As a child I was sexual abused. I don't really remember how young I was when it started, but it ended when I was around nine. I tried to block these memories, but when I was 13 something clicked. Several memories came flooding back when I heard a girl at school say a certain word. I told one of my bestfriends of the memories. She convinced me to tell my mother. I told my mother that my uncle(her brother) had abused me when I was younger. She did not hold me, nor tell me it would be o.k., she was cold to me and worst of all, she did NOT believe me!! The look on her face has stuck with me to this day. I am now 22 and these memories are beginning to take a piece of me. I believe that they are also beginning to hurt my marriage of 1 1/2 years. Please offer any advice you can.

November 4, 2000
3:18 am
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Sissy
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I just wanted you to know that I understand, the same thing happened to me except it was my father's brother and no one in his family including him believed me. I also had blocked it out until one day my uncle made a comment to me and I knew but I still can not tell you exactly what happened it is still blocked and I'm not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. I wish I could give you some advice, but I am still stumbling through my life. I just wanted you to know that there are other people out there, I know if made me feel a little better.

November 4, 2000
1:28 pm
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Ryn
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Thanks for answering, Sissy. At times I do feel like I'm alone. I do have a wonderful husband who is very supportive, but I just can't seem to let it go. I want some sort of revenge. Not anything drastic, just something to make him go through the mental anguish that I have gone through for the past ten years. Is this wrong?

November 8, 2000
11:27 pm
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dimet
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I blocked a lot of stuff out too. I am 23 and I recently began remembering all this stuff. Anything sets it off. I finally realized I was raped by my ex. I knew something happened but it took a very scary flashback to remember it. My marriage is wonderful except sex. I try to avoid it if at all possible. I love my husband so much but I know I am hurting him. I just tremble and loose my breath and I can't even take my clothes off in front of him because of the abuse from this guy. I wish so hard I could just forget everything again. My friend told me that when something tramatic happens and you can't handle it, you block it out untill you can handle it. It took me almost 6 years to bring everything back. I feel so stupid because I feel like I shouldn't be remembering something that can hurt my marriage. I am trying to get up courage to get help. My husband is very supportive of me, and is very patient. I don't really want revenge, I just want inner peace. My dad usta hit me and my mom didn't believe me about that. So I know the look you are talking about. I blocked all that dad stuff out too, but I have been remembering things about that too. I started writing a journal about things I remember. It may be stupid but I would rather write on paper than to leave in my mind. It helps.

November 9, 2000
1:29 pm
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Cici
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Ok, ya'll. I'll tell you what worked for me, but remember that each individual is different. I was lucky to have the support and compassion of my family and friends, as well as a pretty stubborn personality.

I was molested at 5, raped at 12 and date-raped at 19. It was pretty hellish as a teenager, with low self-esteem and depression and anxiety.

I turned to drug abuse and alcohol and then trekked into therapy with a terrible psychiatrist who just popped pills into me. I've seen a total of two psychiatrists and a therapist.

I'm a psych major. But you can do any number of internet searches to find resources to educate yourself. That is the first step. Learn about yourself, confront you fears. Sometimes this is best done within the therapeutic context but be your own advocate. Ask questions about the therapist's schooling, their philosophy and make a plan of attack together.

Eat right. It's a weird thing, but nutrition is very important in maintaining mental health. Exercise. Physical activity releases endorphins which naturally elevate mood and prevent depression. Your mind intreacts with your body, and an unhealthy psyche can lead to an unhealthy body.

Talk about what happened. Write about it. This is possibly the most painful thing you will ever experience, the process takes years to complete. I started my journey when I was 16 adn I finally told my parents about the molestation and rape. It was a major setback when I was raped again at 19 (which is when my drug probelm began) but at 21, today, i can say that I have gotten over the hump (5 years later!) and I feel immensely better.

There are no easy answers, or quick fixes. Anti-depressants won't help because the origin of your turmoil is in your own memories.

Let me illustrate. A phobia develops first through classical conditioning. You pair the feelings of fear or shock from a traumatic event with a neutral object and that object will stimulate the same feelings. Rape trauma is somewhat like a large-scale phobia development. You begin to make low-level fear responses to EVERYTHING, even your loved ones and spouses, and all intimidating members of the opposite sex, because suppressing memories will only cause that fear response to leak into other ares of your life. Our memories are interrelated through various associations, ou can't think of your parents without thinking of the relative, etc.

People carry phobias with them for a long time because they fear the neutral stimulus that was paired with the trauma so much that they avoid it. You avoid your own memories because you fear that they will cause the same fear response in you. But this isn't the case. Memory is not the same as physical reality. By confronting your fears and anguish you will control them, instead of letting them control you.

Be strong. It CAN get better. God cannot make things better for you, he can only give you the strength to make yourselves better.

November 9, 2000
9:38 pm
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wow cici, thats good. i'm impressed. i'm gonna think about what u said somewhere else about rewarding urself for small tasks and building it up. and physical activity helps prevent depression? interesting..
i sit in my room all day with almost no physical activity as u can imagine. its a vicious circle. i'm down so i dont feel like doing anything. but i'll try to think about it, how to break this cycle. everything suxs right now :(.

November 10, 2000
12:11 am
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dimet
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I like what you said Cici. But, how in the world do you say outloud what you just barely started to write down. How can you tell a friend if you're afraid you will feel weird around them for now on, or how they will think of you, or feel sorry for you. I want to talk to my best friend but I don't want things to be all wierd. I have recently started going back to church with my best friend and everything he preached about has me thinking of stuff. Is that his way of saying-Hello! Deal with it.

November 10, 2000
3:50 pm
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Molly
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I agree with Cici, it comes from within. I discovered my repressed memories at the age of 39, in school learning about human behavior. Learning the origin of my lack of boundries. It never ceases to amaze me how sexual trauma, is a re occuring event, my friend who specializes in incest in her practice see's it daily. Prior to teens, in the teen years, then as an adult, like until it is labeled and the work started, it keeps happening.
I believe more than ever that diet, and EXERCISE, is such a key ingredient in any growth or stability process, it provides such a foundation for balance to begin. We forget that we are finely tuned machines, and the chemistry is effected so easily. Depending on the stress, and perhaps substance abuse I do believe that antidepressants, can support and benifit, but they only do so much for so long, it is just one tool in the process. Either we depleted the serotonin, or the brain needs to regulate the amount of serotonin it expects to receive, or expell. All of this requires again the diet, and exercise to support. But it is up to the individual to make the changes, behavior, intrepretation, and acceptance for the healing to happen.
I think too, that we abuse our friends and family sometimes, and again this is individual, but really, they can do only so much. We think we can open our bag of problems and dump them, just what do we expect that they can do for us , or with the information that we just dumped on them. I think enjoying their company, letting them know that we are processing issues is enough. Lets face it, most of the time, this pain, this hurt is so deep, we leave them feeling even worse, because of the futility of mere mortal effort to attempt healing such a deep wound. Usually they end up with some sort of a wound, as a result of our sharing, not thinking of their position or relation to the situation. Often the efforts that they make are subjective, and off track Venting, seeking solutions and comfort for problems this deep I believe is best for or require an objective professional, or better yet, a group of similar solution seekers, who are not there to make it happen, change or disappear, but to help us formulate our thoughts, and our choices, and get away from isolated thinking, rechurning, and self sabbotage. It is hard to be different, to have faith and to be consistant, but with practice, and committment it happens. It is such a long process, and I find that when I start to sink, I am either off in diet, exercise, relapsed into old thought processes, or just need sleep. Amazing the power of sleep.

November 11, 2000
6:50 pm
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thebeauty-uk
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Hi Ryn,
I have just found these pages.
I was sexually abused from the age of seven and raped by a stranger at twelve. I blocked it out completely.I am 53 and at 47 was suicidal through alcohol abuse. I am now a recovering alcoholic which means I don't drink.
I had therapy which helped unblock my mind. I spent a week in bed crying and reliving the rape. Letting out the feelings that I had repressed for so long. I found a support group who had been abused as well although I didn't return as I felt worse.
My journey to health and wellness was when in AA my sponsor helped me look at why I was raped and abused. I used to feel that I had a sign on my head saying to all men go on abuse me.
As a child I was desperate for love and abusers don't ask me how, know this.
My mother didn't even aknowledge that I had said something when I tried to tell her what my grandmother's husband was doing. I have recently found out that my sister saw him trying to do the same things to her. That wall of silence...a vicious cycle.
It has been a long painful journey for me, learning what low self esteem I had,self sabotage and hatred of myself. I was anorexic for many years I didn't eat for days on end. People who knew me envied me for my slimness.
Today I have learnt to live with the pain by sharing my experiences with others. It has given me empathy and wisdom I would otherwise not have had. I use my life to the best of my ability living as happily as I am able. That is the best revenge of all. It took me a long while to understand and let go of my murderous feelings towards my abusers untill I fully understood that I was still their victim as long as I continued to suffer.
I wish you all the best and pray that your journey towards health and wellness continues.

November 13, 2000
2:30 am
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lmae
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I too just found these pages and I understand everything that has been said. I have always known I was sexually abused as a child. I even know who did it. It was my father. It is weird because I thought my dad was the smartest man alive and at the same time I was terrified of him.
The abuse started around the time I started kindergarten at the age of 5 and it continued until I started highschool. I know what it is like to carry a family secret your entire life. Somehow the abuse stopped and I still don't know why but I am not concerned about why it stopped, I am concerned about why it happened in the first place. I don't know if my mother knew or not but she died when I was 13 years old so I will never know. However, I am familiar with the cold looks and distance all of you have mentioned you received from other family members. I have carried the guilt of my fathers crime my entire adult life and finally it dawned on me that it was his fault and only his fault. My fellow friends, let me assure you that we are not to blame. The biggest step in healing is knowing you were an innocent child who was abused by the very same people society teaches us to trust. I have been in therapy for about 3 years on and off and I am just now starting to make the connections to the way I react and behave. I was fine, at least I thought I was fine, until I accidently came across a porn site and saw a young girl in a very unpleasant situation. Needless to say my whole world crumbled. I was able to pretend I was okay but I just snapped. For the first time in my 28 years of life I was depressed and started meds along with intense psychotherapy. I have remembered things I have long forgotten and even though it hurts to remember we have to. Other wise it will eat away at every cell in your body. I can't say if you should confront your abuser because at 20 I confronted mine and he told me not to blame him. Go figure. I want to recommend two books that saved my life. The first is The COURAGE TO HEAL and the other is CO-DEPENDENT NO MORE. Both books provided me with the reassurence I needed to recover. Good luck my friends.

November 15, 2000
9:06 pm
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i just found your pages.. i feel for all of you.. i understand to some extent what all of you are saying.. i was 9 years old... it was a friend of the family. and i i did not say a word to noone for 10years.. until i went away for college. i decided to open up to a couple of people, my parents.. they took it hard. especially my father, he could not handle it, and told the man what he thought, this made the man leave. i then denied needing any help, and kept it in me for several years..now im trying to see if i can get some help. i do not want this to affect my life anymore. i have resently got engaged and i do not want to bring any bad images or aspects into my new life.. i have not located anyone to help me, but im in search. i hope that there is someone or someplace out there that can help me in this.. thank you all for your time

November 16, 2000
1:25 pm
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Cici
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God, how did I start talking about these things?

Well, I wrote poetry (you know, the anguished, stilted poetry of the passionate adolescent: "My heart is full of tears/ bent of broken by all these fears" blah blah blah).

But I think it started right after the first rape, at age 12. I would go into the bathroom and look at myself and do a question adn answer thing. It's hard to explain. It takes a lot of introspection, I guess, and I've always been like this. That's why counseling, with a good counselor, is a great experience.

The thing about counseling is building trust. You can't go into teh first session thinking, let's make a plan of attack. You have to go in adn just start talking. About anything at all, your cat, your apartment, car trouble. A good counselor should then guide you through assocating things.

That's how long-term memory is formed. You associate things that seem completely unrelated to one another. That's why you can try to think of someone's name and not remember it until a few days later, when you're doing something unrelated adn it comes to you because something you did triggered that memory. Same with PSTD, something unrelated can trigger assocaitions to make your body react viscerally to a traumatic memory. The result is, of course, a panic attack.

You just interrelate things until you can get to what you REALLY need to talk about. That's teh key. Start with something neutral, re-trace your mental assocations, work through the memory. Then, you begin to see that it's not so bad. You do this successively and VOILA! the memory and it's triggers no longer lead to fear response.

November 16, 2000
7:44 pm
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autumn38
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It saddens me when I hear about sexual abuse and what it does to a person. It doesn't surprise me that you're mother reacted that way towards you, most times they don't want to face it, she probably does want to believe you but is ashamed and wants to keep it hush, hush. Have you tried counselling? You may find that will help you a great deal. Just remember don't feel guilty or ashamed about what happen, after all you were just an inocent child!

I hope you will heal from this terrible tragedy.

November 16, 2000
10:03 pm
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toons
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second day reading your experiences and as i read them i setill get a little nervous... i had attempted to open up to my family once again.. my momther is starting to realize all that had happend to me... i just find it hard to open up to my father, i usually have been really close to him, but i have alittle fear about re-opening up to him.. i have attained some couseling.. but as of now.. i do not know how much help this will do... when i speak to the couselor i find myself leaving and thinking more and having vivid images... have ayou all had something like this as well... i feel like couseling makes me think too much and i do not know if it will help or hurt more and lead no where... im unsure of what to believe.. i do not know where else to go.. i have my fam tell me that i have to let go and move on..but how do i get to that conclusion.. i know that i have to let go, and continue, but how to i attain that??? that is the hard part for me... can any of you advise here??

as you all may have read in the first passagei left.. i got engaged...but i feel that im bringing more un neede problesms to my significant other..sometimes i fear that she will just give up and leave me.. that is a hard thing i have.. i have tried many things.. but i do not know how to overcome all that i have allowed build up in me.. can any of you help ... thank to you all.. and hope you all are doing great....

December 1, 2000
12:24 pm
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so confused
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I have read all of your passages hoping for some insight. I just found out that my mate abused my daughter 5 years ago. She is now 14. When I found out I did believe her and reacted. As days went by I searched for answers. My mate and I were still together when all of this came out. My daughter is so bitter and vengeful. The thing that clicked her memory was I just found out that my mate had cheated on me this past summer. She saw my reaction. It was bad. I thought my world was over. After a few days went by I thought maybe I could forgive him and we could work through this. (this is not like me). I asked her to try to forgive him and she lost it. I told her that he did this to me and not her. She cont. to cry. Then I got a pit in my stomach and knew. I made her tell me. She told me that he molested her 5 years ago and it went on for about a year. I LOST IT!!! I immediately confronted him..he did not deny it. In the last 3 weeks I have gotten details. It all makes me sick. I tried to protect my kids the best I could. I trusted him with them. My son does not know. My daughter has such an attitude towards me.I want to support her and my mate. He was suicidal after this all came out. We stopped him and I told him if he cared about us at all he would not leave us with that to deal with too.
In the last 7 years a love has formed. Am I supposed to just turn it off and walk away? I love my daughter and my mate. We might not know why this all started or stopped. Is it a one time occurence? Will it happen again? Will my daughter survive this? Will I? Will my mate??? So many questions. For the last 5 years my daughter and my mate have had a very close relationship. Laughing, joking, going places etc... she never showed any signs of being scared or depressed. I know memories can be suppressed I have read all about it. How were your childhoods besides the abuse part? I really am so confused!

December 1, 2000
12:24 pm
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so confused
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I have read all of your passages hoping for some insight. I just found out that my mate abused my daughter 5 years ago. She is now 14. When I found out I did believe her and reacted. As days went by I searched for answers. My mate and I were still together when all of this came out. My daughter is so bitter and vengeful. The thing that clicked her memory was I just found out that my mate had cheated on me this past summer. She saw my reaction. It was bad. I thought my world was over. After a few days went by I thought maybe I could forgive him and we could work through this. (this is not like me). I asked her to try to forgive him and she lost it. I told her that he did this to me and not her. She cont. to cry. Then I got a pit in my stomach and knew. I made her tell me. She told me that he molested her 5 years ago and it went on for about a year. I LOST IT!!! I immediately confronted him..he did not deny it. In the last 3 weeks I have gotten details. It all makes me sick. I tried to protect my kids the best I could. I trusted him with them. My son does not know. My daughter has such an attitude towards me.I want to support her and my mate. He was suicidal after this all came out. We stopped him and I told him if he cared about us at all he would not leave us with that to deal with too.
In the last 7 years a love has formed. Am I supposed to just turn it off and walk away? I love my daughter and my mate. We might not know why this all started or stopped. Is it a one time occurence? Will it happen again? Will my daughter survive this? Will I? Will my mate??? So many questions. For the last 5 years my daughter and my mate have had a very close relationship. Laughing, joking, going places etc... she never showed any signs of being scared or depressed. I know memories can be suppressed I have read all about it. How were your childhoods besides the abuse part? I really am so confused!

December 1, 2000
7:38 pm
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Molly
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So, what does the daughter want to do? It would be nice to say well we got that out in the open now lets move on, but can you? Can she? The circle of trust that was broken, is now out in the open, I imagine all are walking on egg shells.
I think that if you stew on this for a while, you are going to get real angry at the mate, and wait until her brother finds out, there will be a testerone war there, wanting to protect his sister, and will get angry at you possibly for not demonstrating any action. In our society today, he is supposed to be labeled and monitored, and followed, Megan's law. How can you rest and be comfortable when your daughter has freinds over, other parents that are trusting that you have a safe home, and is it? Most pediphiles, pardon the spelling, don't change, from my experience, it is something that they learned early also, it may be that your son was also abused? Your whole world has been turned upside down, and it is typical for women to try to hold the nest together, but... to what expense? Children need attention and affection even evil love, they want acceptance, and that is part of the delimma of sexual abuse, it might have felt good ( if he had hurt her, which is hard to imagine how he couldn't have physically, you would have known before most likely) so how could it be wrong, and it was some one that she trusted that did it. Start with some therapy, see if the family will go, and take it from there. I don't know how I would sleep at night my self, or why, or how I would ever want to have intemacy with a mate that had such actions with my daughter, and I am trying to be gentle. Such a horible shock, it will take time for the reality to set in. I pray for your resolve.

December 18, 2000
12:42 pm
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I am sorry for your trama and I was wondering if you had any advice on the paper I am doing

December 19, 2000
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It is simply amazing that so many of us can be abused and then have alomost normal lives.

counseling cousneling counseling..either on your own in the self help section or with a professional.

WE, THE ABUSED ARE NOT THE CULPRITS, WE ARE THE VITIMS!!!!

Maybe we all need to get good and angry and take our lives back!!!

And if you are rhe parent of an abused child it is your duty to help that abused child make sense of it. Forgiveness can come later.

December 19, 2000
7:18 pm
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so confused
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i am a good mother. My kids are my life and have been for 14 years. My son is 10...he was NOT abused! I am reading all of these threads and trying to absorb. You are all helping me understand my daughter's feelings. I guess I know this already, but I am having a hard time with my feelings. Can you turn love on and off? i have loved this man for 7 years. i deeply love him...I find this out and I hate him for what he did. What about the last 6 years??? All a lie??? I know what he did was wrong...worse than wrong...My worst night mare has come true and I am in the middle of it. I am so lost...even knowing what I need to do. If he were a monster this would be so easy. He isn't. He is not living here, so her friends are safe. Again, this happened 6 years ago and no reoccurences. I looked it up and he is not classified as a pedophile. He is classified as an incest perpetrator. It may or may not reoccur. He swears no! He said he would rather die. Also says it never happened before this. Of course I asked "why my daughter?" GOD, please help me get through this!!!!!!!!!!! I am exhausted!!!! I feel so sick. WHY??????????????????????????????

December 19, 2000
8:50 pm
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So confused,

God moves in mysterious ways... OK, I don't buy it in circumstances like this either, but you will get through this.

As far as how you classify your partner, a name does NOT mean diddly in this case. Whether he is a pedophile or an incest perpetrator is irrelevant... the outcome is that a child was abused. Period. And of COURSE he is going to say it never happened before. You think that after lying to you for six years, he would have any problems at all lying about the years before he started touching your daughter?

My blood boils to think that a mother is more worried about protecting her "mate" and salvaging that relationship than doing everything that she can to protect her daughter, her own flesh and blood. Granted, I am not you, and I cannot judge, this is just the reaction that it elicts in me.

My personal rant aside, here is something else to consider... you say how much you love your mate and how strong your relationship was before this. Well, it couldn't have been that strong if 6 years ago he was boinking your daughter intead of having adult sexual relations with you. And in the 6 years following, it couldn't have been that trusting of a relationship if he kept the whole thing secret from you all that time.

Perhaps it's time you reevaluated exactly WHY you are so committed to keeping this relationship. Be honest with yourself. Are you afraid to be alone? Do you need the financial support? Love is a strong emotion, yes, but healthy adult love between a man and a woman does NOT come in between the love of parent and child (at least not until the child becomes and adult). Understandably, you should be hurt and outraged at this violation of trust, but torn? Picture what he must have done to that little girl and tell me that you are still torn.

Hate me, post back and tell me how awful I am for not offering warm-fuzzies. Tell me how upset and angry I've made you, and how I don't understand the true situation. I admit, I don't, I'm not living it the way you are, I've only lived through it from the other side, the daughter's. Getting angry at me is easy and safe, you don't know me and I don't know you. Anger is not a bad emotion, because often times we get angry because something needs changing either in someone else or in ourselves. ACTION MUST BE TAKEN.

I just hope that my words will provoke you enough to seek the help that you need and your daughter deserves.

Peace.

December 20, 2000
12:50 pm
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I am not angry. I know what you say is true. Yes, maybe I am afraid of being alone after all of this time spent in a relationship that I thought was eternal. No, i do not depend on him financially. What makes things even more difficult is that my son has a bond with him. NO he does not know anything. He is only 10. My mate has been his father figure for the last 7 years. Coaching ball, teaching the hole bit. My son thinks I am being mean by not letting him come back. You are going to say so what! It will ruin my son's entire world to tell him and it won't change a damn thing! If he finds out late on when he is older I will have to deal with that too. We are planning to "end it" whatever you want to call the last 7 years after the holidays. The kids will not be here and I have to have time to deal with it ALONE! Not to mention with all of the suicidal thoughts in the air the holidays are not a good time for anyone to be completely alone. I know the bottom line is what he did. I know the things you say are correct. What you do not know is how I feel. I don't think there are too many people out there who do. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people feeling what you are feeling which tells me how frequently this occurs. I am numb, depressed, and feel so bad. Hopefully with time I will get past this. I am not a bad person....I am a good mother.....you do not know me so please do not judge me.

December 20, 2000
2:15 pm
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You are a good mom, we all know that. You will have to do what you know in your heart is right, and none of us have to live in your hell (we all have our own to live through). You will get the help that you need, you are strong enough to face this and repair your life.

And I said, I cannot judge you. Only you can judge yourself. Our hopes and prayers are with you.

December 20, 2000
2:41 pm
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So confused,

This will likely be my only input on the matter as I am a busy person. But I've been following your case here, and would like to offer my angle on this.

Incest perpetration is a different variety of person than a pedophile (as you have learned - good research) - and is certainly good information for you to have. It's very common for women to love incest perpetrators, but the abuse, as others have explained, is definitely is the same, and means the same to the abused. Incest perpetration is the most common kind of abuse. It happens a lot, and is rarely told.

You are certainly in a very, very, tough, frustrating, and seemingly hopeless situation. You do have lots of work to do here, but it's definitely not hopeless.

Regarding treatment decisions.

What is important to do?

1) do not condone in any way the abuse! You owe it to your daughter to hold him 300% accountable. Accountable to you, himself, and foremost, your daughter. Sometimes, the best punishment a child can see happen, is the accountability and repercussions she sees her mother/relatives handing out. Punishment itself however, has repercussions - sometimes scary ones, but its up to you and a professional to evaluate those repercussions. - - - you may ask, how does accountability help? It shows self respect for yourself & your daughter. Your daughter needs to respect you, and needs to respect herself - and you are in the spotlight for setting an example here. How can she respect you, if you seemingly don't respect yourself? Letting yourself be torn, tortured, sacrificed, manipulated, and your daughter left hanging in the breeze after such a revelation, is not respectful behavior.

2) the definition of an incest perpetrator may help your daughter as well, in understanding what happened - but at the appropriate time. Blurting it out for the sake of knowledge isn't the best way. A professional can help you with that too.

3) Find respite for yourself whenever and however you can for the stress and strain. And find help for your noted, "unhealthiness?" You are aware of it for a reason, and owe it to yourself to work for something that you don't classify as, "unhealthy".

Without you holding him accountable, and getting treatment now, many professionals would predict that it is likely, that as she gets older (adults feel different than children/teens) that he will at the very minimum "creep her out, and cause unresolved anger and frustration",

Don't be fooled here by your mate. Your daughter told you for a reason. She's getting those inklings inside that this wasn't right, and he needs to be found out and punished. She wants you involved in sorting this out, or she wouldn't have made that huge, huge, leap of telling. Many times, the abused does feel better initially after telling. It's been such a secret…so hard to tell, so hard to figure out what to do. That after telling, and getting a shock & anger response (a good response - good job on that) from you as you have, she does feel better…but usually lasts a year, maybe more, maybe even a little more than that. But rest assured, that letting it go at that, is not nearly enough resolution. But when and how forceful to act? Those are important determinations here too.

A wrong was done, now a right needs to be done to help it heal.

It's up to you, your daughter, and a professional to help you decide what rights need to be started now, in the near future, further future, etc to see that healing is done. What does she want? What punishment does she feel he deserves?

I stress professional help. First for you, to help in evaluating what's going on. Forcing your daughter into therapy, or charging like a bull, aren't wise either….but sitting idle by is a no no too.

It's time to act. Get a professional opinion for yourself. And if you don't like the first one, get another one. You'll know in your heart when you are getting good guidance when you hear it. No one opinion is right, or wrong.

Good luck - you know what's right inside,

"Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answers, but wish we didn't" - unknown

SC

December 22, 2000
4:57 pm
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Thank you for the advice. You seem to know something about this. I know there are not too many people who can understand how I feel. I do know my daughter is the most important thing right now. Her growing to be as well rounded as possible. I also read that the victim is usually the most healthy in the family. THIS IS SO TRUE!!!!! We are in the beginning of this long journey. I will not hide how I feel from myself. I love my mate and I still do. I do not believe he meant any harm to my daughter or my family. I hope I am not being naive. I have beat myself up about it. He is seeking help and yes he is concerned with his future...wouldn't anybody be???? normally a law abiding citizen, honest (he thought), and an over all good person. We may not know why or what caused this to happen. We do have to try to live in the present and try to make things better for the future. I hope and pray my family makes it through this. We are good, caring people and I know it has to get better. Please if you have any more information pass it along to me. If anyone else is in this situation please let me know how it turned out or what you are going through. THANK you so much!!!

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