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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Abuse & Assault » Rape/Sexual Abuse Support (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Rape/Sexual Abuse Support
Heather
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This doesn't have to be a confessional: no one has to tell the whole story, or even ANY of the story of their rape or abuse here.

But it breaks my heart to know there is ANYONE out there who has survived rape or abuse who doesn't have other survivors to talk to, so I'm putting this up here, separate from our other sexual abuse threads, which are more about telling the whole tale.

So, for instance, having trouble dealing with tirggers? Have you had to see or live near to your rapist? Dealing with the decision to tell a partner about a rape or not, or with having told and now feeling uncomfortable, or having trouble managing your partner's feelings about rape? Just want to talk to someone who gets it? Just want someplace safe to say nothing more than "I was raped," for the first time? Here's the place.

(And that given, I ask that people who are NOT survivors of rape or sexual abuse not post here, even with very well-intentioned sympathy. Sometimes, sympathy, sadness from non-survivors, however kindly meant, can be an extra weight all its own. Thanks!)

Just to put my own stuff on the table in brief, I'm a survivor of more than one rape and sexual assault: a molestation at the age of 11, a group assault at the age of twelve, one attempted and one completed date rape in my adult life, as well as systematic verbal sexual abuse in my early teen years. I've had therapy for my early abuses -- which was very helpful to me, and I'm very vocal about being a survivor and have talked to many, many other survivors, both in person and online. And even with many, many years since most of my assaults, while overall, I'd say I feel I've healed very well and do okay with everything, there are still some days when things get tricky, and still some issues I do sometimes still grapple with.

[ 10-01-2006, 01:06 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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greenapp1es
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Well...I guess I'll be the first to post here then. My situation is kinda odd though...and even now I'm only half convinced it counts as rape or abuse.

When I was 11 years old, I had been going swimming at my cousin's house. With my brother and I there there were 4 of us...I was 11, my brother was 9, my cousin 10 and his sister 8. After swimming (my cousin didn't swim) I was taken away by him because he wanted to "play alone for a while".

At first, this play was fairly innocent, kinda like playing house. Then I was the mom and he was the dad. Then he had me lie on the bed, kissing me and telling me how much he loved me, and always had, and ignoring my constant, CONSTANT pleas to stop and do something else. A few minutes later this continued as he proceeded to dry-hump me (he was wearing jeans....I was still in my swim suit). It was only in the middle of this that I finally....FINALLY REALIZED what was happening. It just kinda clicked. At 11 I understood what sex WAS, but little more than that...and in a single instant everything came together. I freaked out completely, started screaming and finally forced him off. My brother and younger cousin had seen most of what had happened from peeking around the corner.

My aunt and uncle had gotten attracted to the room from the screaming, and when I tried to tell what happened they did not believe me at first. After 45 min of my cousin denying everything while I sat and cried my aunt and uncle finally asked my younger cousin if she had seen anything...her testimony clearing me. He was punished, and I was told by my parents to NEVER speak of it to ANYONE, as my aunt was so embarrased by the whole incident.

For a long time, nothing happened. I told no one, like a dutiful daughter. But after that I wasn't exactly normal. I went through the entirety of jr. high and high school without a boyfirend...and without any desire to have one. Any movies with nudity I avoided, any movies with ANYTHING sexual or crude I reacted to horribly. Finally, at the age of 21, my best friend (who had been raped) pointed out to me that the way I flinched away from the screen when as sexual joke appeared on TV was a reaction mostly seen by someone who had been sexually abused, and asked if anything had ever happened to me. For the first time, the story was told.

In the years since the incident, I had not had a way to deal with it. I had no idea how to react to it...as since clothes had been on the entire time I was convinced that "well, nothing really happened" and that it was something I should just get over. My friend listened to the story, and told me that no...this was not something that one could just get over, that in the state of illinois this counted as rape, and that this being my first knowledge of ANYTHING sexual was going to leave its mark. For the first time in my life, I actually had something to justify my self-imposed guilt of "not getting over it," as I finally realized that it was something I had a right to "not get over" very well on my own.

What is making all of this fun now, is that I now have my first boyfriend ever, who I have been dating for 14 months now. He has been immensely supportive of me in this throughout the relationship, with a couple of "bumps" that my past has caused. A month into dating he was told of my past....and I am immensely glad I told him as early as I did. Before we got into the relationship he had seen my flinching to anything sexual or crude, and seen my face go red as I hid it in my hands any time something of sexual nature came up in conversation. Before dating, he had gone off on how sex was not the most important part of a relationship, and though "while fun" other things were what made a relationship a good one.

Before we started dating, I had read my boyfriends reactions about sex to mean that sex wasn't very important to him. I was wrong. My boyfriend is a self-proclaimed nympho. When I questioned him on why he hadn't made mention of how much he enjoyed sex before we started dating...he told me that a) he thought it was normal virgin shyness and b)he underestimated how hard it would be for him to be in a relationship without it being sexual. When I asked him why he chose me, knowing that sex was not something I was looking for, he answered that he'd fallen in love with me (we'd become friends before agreeing to date) and that I was worth the sacrifice. He took it upon himself to try to help me deal with this, and to show me that while I had seen the terrible side of sexuality, he would try to work with me to overcome that and show me that it could be something beautiful as well.

Over the past 14 months, he has been incredibly patient, never going further than I want to, never pushing me. He has helped me a lot, there is a lot I can deal with now. Where this is hard, is that while he never asks for or demands anything more that what I want, I can see plain as day how hard everything is for him. He feels horrible about this, and has made it clear that he does not want me to subconsciously rush myself....this is something he knew he was getting into and that I'm worth the sacrifice of waiting as long as I need. However, it still hurts to watch how hard this is for him.

Also, since my past had completely turned me off of the idea of "superficial relationships," I find that I'm now trying to deal with a serious relationship without a good footing on how to deal with insecurities and new emotions. The biggest and most painful is I guess jealousy, as my boyfriend and my best friend mentioned earlier have become very close friends themselves. While the worst of this situation has been worked out, at times it can still be very hard.

In as way at least I guess I'm lucky that I finally have some way to deal with what I've been though. However, even though that was years ago, I'm still finding parts of the experience are far from gone.

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greenapp1es
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Sorry, forgot to add this above, but this is also being thought of again due to....well....proximity to easter. Obviously, I've not forgotten about what has happened. However, most of my family dosen't know...and I have to deal with him on family get-togethers and holidays. It's really hard to deal with this at times, since I really don't trust him. If there is any advice on how to deal with that specifically...it would be appreciated
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-Lauren-
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I guess I'll add on here too, then. I've recounted the story of what happened to me in another sexual abuse thread, so I'll only recap.

I was molested by the father of a boy I played with down the street. I was 7 and he was in his later 30's. My parents refused to tell anybody about it, even my closest family members. I still am very afraid of the men of the race of my attacker; my parents kept telling me that men from that country do that normally to girls. While I'm mostly healed from that abuse, I'm still very hyper-sensitive to jokes and light-hearted conversation about child molestation, as well as a degree of racism I'm trying to get over.

greenapples, your story really reminds me of my own in a few ways. It's especially deep-rooted when it happens to children, and I know how tough it can be to have the people who are supposed to be taking care of you to try and keep you hushed. Thank you for sharing.

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Heather
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I should't have been there alone.

I shouldn't have been wearing that out.

I should have yelled louder.

I knew better than to walk down that street.

I should have yelled, period.

I didn't say no strongly enough.

I said yes to being in bed with him, so I guess I said yes to anything he wanted to do there.

He just couldn't help himself.

I should have kicked him.

I shouldn't have been drinking.

I shouldn't have danced so close.

I should have seen this coming.

Someone else should have been there to protect me.

I should have gone home earlier.

I should have just said yes, even though I didn't want to, because that way it wouldn't have been/felt like rape.

I should have listened to my friends about him.

I shouldn't have initiated any kind of sex at all.

I shouldn't have developed a reputation for having sex, so that it'd be assumed I was easy.


I'm listing just a few of these thoughts that not only have I had at various points about my rapes/attempted rapes, but that nearly all of us has had.

I'm listing them to remind everyone that ALL of those thoughts are wrong, per making a rape not a rape.

If someone points their gun at us and shoots us down dead, no matter what we have or have not done, they are a MURDERER.

If someone has sex with us that we did NOT say YES to, that we did not want, no matter what we have done or not done, they are a RAPIST.

And that really is all there is to it.

If you can't get past the self-blaming stuff for yourself, perhaps it's helpful to know that perpetuating that stuff actually harms other women by continuing to support a culture which enables rape, which often does NOT hold a rapist accountable. And not because he doesn't deserve to be or isn't, but because much of the world supports women being sexually available to anyone who wants to use them 24/7, with little to no care for women's enjoyment, permission, or physical and emotional safety.

Please don't forget: YOU didn't rape you. Your rapist did, and your rapist CHOSE to rape you.

I know it's hard to deal with that sometimes, especially when there are so many messages out there that whisper to us that there is something we did, some flaw of ours, that put us here.

But there really isn't. All we did was be somewhere, be vulnerable, (usually) be female (or feminized), and appear, to a rapist, a viable opportunity as a victim. All we did was be the person someone thought they could overpower or get away with raping.

And in my experience, the sooner we look at a lot of those thoughts and realize how tragic, how disempowering, what utter baloney they are, the closer we get to some extra safety, the closer we get to being a person a rapist may look at and decide is NOT someone they can overpower or get away with raping.

That's not to say that's our responsibility, mind: it's still the responsibility of everyone not to rape. But in a word where, unfortunately, we need to do a lot more self-protection than we should, one thing that can be really helpful -- it has been to me, personally -- is to do everything in our power NOT to victimize ourselves even further.

[ 04-17-2006, 12:52 PM: Message edited by: Miz Scarlet ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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MaryTheGypsy
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I was never ‘raped’ per-se, but I was sexually abused several times since the age of nine, and I’ve been verbally harassed throughout highschool.

The first and last times were the worst. The first because. . .well, it was the first time. I was nine, and I trusted the woman who abused me. I had never even considered the possibility of a girl abuser. Also, I feel slightly betrayed by my mother for letting her nine year old daughter go to a sleep-over with a 16-17 year old girl. What mother does that? I know its unhealthy to blame her but. . .I feel slightly betrayed.

The last abuse was the worst because it caused the most harm physically, and was the most extensive abuse. If I hadn’t gotten out of that situation as quickly as I did, I’m sure it would have ended in rape. Forced oral and manual sex, both him forcing me to do it, and forcing it on me, felt little better than actual rape. I was still invaded, and can only thank god he didn’t steal my virginity. I think of it often, and it was just recently that I was able to move on. A month of continuous abuse from someone who called himself my boyfriend is hard to take.

The problem I’m having now is this;

I am bi-sexual, but I’m currently with a guy. He’s the first guy I’ve been with in a healthy relationship. I love him so much. Anyway, I talk to him sometimes about girls, and one night he asked (out of curiosity) what kind of girls I like. (He had just found out I was bisexual.) It was a comfortable conversation, and I told him, with confidence, that in girls I usually liked long-haired redheads.

It upset me afterwards, because the woman I had pictured in my head was very much like the first girl who ever abused me.

I wonder sometimes if I’m bi-sexual BECAUSE of that abuse. I also feel sickened by the thought that I might be attracted to women who look like her. It brings up doubts, and even though I KNOW I did nothing to solicit what she did to me, even though I know I HATED what she did to me, and she scared me, it brings up doubts.

I still feel slightly responsible for my most recent abuse as well. I know its unhealthy, and so unfair to blame myself, but I can’t help it.

I want to talk to my boyfriend about his, because he’s my best friend and I trust him so much, but I don’t know if I should. He knows I’ve been abused but. . . I don’t know. I’ve never gone into details.

My parents don’t know either. I doubt they’d believe me because when my sister told a therapist she was raped, my mother said she was just ‘Trying to get attention’.

My flashbacks were recently triggered, and I feel lost.

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~Mary

“People out there must be told about the self-loathing that follows rape and how it's the greatest breakage in divine law to mutilate themselves, as I have done.” Tori Amos

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Nailo
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Mary... I know what you mean. As I've said before, my mom pretty much blew me off the first time I spoke up about my abuse. Really, you need to talk to her and make her understand that it's not attention seaking. She should know that this is NOT something people who look for help, comfort and advice go around flaunting. It's certainly nothing to be proud of. You should look for therapy, maybe even joint therapy for you, your mom and your sister. You seem to have some issues to sort out with her. As for worrying about your virginity being "stolen"? Think about it this way. Is rape sex? NO!! When do you lose your virginity? The first time you feel you've had sex. Therefore, in my opinion, no one can "steal" it away from you. Cheer up about that one [Smile]

With regard to me, I've been feeling hypersensitive these days. I feel like I completely distrust older men sometimes, or just people in general. My step dad, who has never done anything to me or tried to, and is really a good person...I'm really uncomfortable around him sometimes. Once, I was at the computer late, and he came out of his room and saw me. My stomach jumped, I was so scared. But he just went downstairs and watched tv...I remembered he suffers from insomnia. My psychologist told me that I have to remember that just because my father abused me doesn't mean that all 40 something year old men will do the same. I hate feeling that my abuse has so much control over my life... luckily though, I haven't felt uncomfortable with my boyfriend in a while. I feel safe with him now...it's definitely a step in the right direction. The only thing is I still can't stand him or anyone squeezing my thighs, even if it's just in an attempt to tickle me. Once, when I was 14 or so, my dad picked me up from my swords class. My arms were really tired from holding up my sword, so I was really weak. Then, he just started casually caressing my inner thigh. I groaned and tried pulling his hand away, but I was so weak that I couldn't. I don't know what he thought, but he smiled wider and started caressing me with more strength, until I yelled at him to stop. He did, but he started yelling at me; why the hell was I doing that, it's not good to not let my own father touch me... He didn't touch my genitals or anything (this time), but I felt aweful. A friend of mine said that it was molestation as well... But really, I don't say it that much because I think that people will blow it off as insignificant because nothing "serious" happened. I don't know what to think about this one...

As well, what do you consider non-physical molestation? When I was 12 and I came back from a trip from the U.S in a mini skirt and a new blouse, my dad gasped when he saw me and said I looked really sexy. "What did they feel you up there? You've really filled out this summer". Things like that. Still, when he sees me, he stares at me. He wrote me an email a month or so ago, first line: "I miss looking at you when you don't notice". That REALLY creeped me out...

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"Love does not make itself in the desire for copulation, but in the desire for shared sleep." - The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

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Heather
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quote:
The last abuse was the worst because it caused the most harm physically, and was the most extensive abuse. If I hadn’t gotten out of that situation as quickly as I did, I’m sure it would have ended in rape. Forced oral and manual sex, both him forcing me to do it, and forcing it on me, felt little better than actual rape.
Just to be clear, the things you are describing here ARE rape. Forced oral and manual sex, legally and by literal defintion, are rape.

Generally, for most rape surviviors, WHAT activities occurred doesn't make things better or worse. It can be harder to heal and deal when you can't allow yourself to fully recognize you were wounded, or think some other sexual activity would have necessarily been worse for you: the harm that rape does tends to be whole mind/whole body, and people who have been raped via vaginal intercourse, and those raped via oral sex or anal sex? We all tend to be in pretty much the same boat.

(Which is some of why it tends to be unsound when people point to penises as the cause of rape, or castration/removal of penises as a sound approach to rape prevention: a finger or mouth can do just as much emotional and physical damage as a penis can.)

And none of it is your fault: you are not at fault for putting trust in someone and them betraying that trust.

Per sexual orientation, I don't know of any study done on rape or sexual abuse which shows that it influences orientation. Any form of sexual abuse absolutely can essentially co-opt aspects of our sexuality, however. These aspects are likely best to address with a counselor or rape support group.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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MaryTheGypsy
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Thank you for telling me that Miz Scarlet. I guess in my little circle I grew up in, if it wasn't straight up penis-vagina rape, it wasn't rape, and it wasn't worth notice. Heck, sometimes even when it was that type of abuse it was ignored, but I guess thats how it can be anywhere. That fact makes me sad, and sick to my stomach.

I'm sorry to hear about that Nalio, but I'm glad things are getting good with your boyfriend. Sometimes I'm a bit afraid of my dad too, even though he's never done anything like that towards me.

I do go to a therapist, but my mother. . .I don't know when the right time will be to talk to her.

I've just gone through my life with people telling me what happened to me wasn't real 'rape' so it wasn't worth notice. That it wasn't that bad. In the end, I had to be abused by a boy my mother approved of and went on and on about before I was able to stand up for myself and say 'This is wrong. I don't deserve this. I need to make this stop'

Its sick when people see a little girl being groped in public and just laugh. Its even worse when it happens so often that that particular little girl starts to believe she deserves it.

I feel a bit ignorant on this subject honestly. Things have happened to me in my life but. . .Nobody ever talked to me about it. Nobody ever bothered.

[ 05-25-2006, 06:13 PM: Message edited by: MaryTheGypsy ]

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~Mary

“People out there must be told about the self-loathing that follows rape and how it's the greatest breakage in divine law to mutilate themselves, as I have done.” Tori Amos

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butterflie
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I've never even considered telling anyone this, let alone people i don't know, but i'm coming to the point where i have to say something. I can't speak to my parents, (we're a close family but i don't feel comfortable talking to them about this)

When i was 7, a boy i knew from school came over to play. He said it would be a fun game to lay on my bed with the curtains shut and the door locked. He made me take off the dress i was wearing then started to put his hands everywhere on me. I can't remember much, i think i must have blocked some parts out because i have a good memory but that time in a blank. The boy ended up putting his fingers in me, (i don't know another way to say it, so if it sounds crude, i'm sorry)i cant remember if it hurt but i really didn't like it. he was a bit older than me and told me it was normal and it was 'our little secret'. He visited me another few times before he stopped. we ended up going to the same high school and sometimes i would catch him looking at me and it would give me horrible tingles. he changed his looks a lot and his voice is less threatening than i remember. we had to work together on some projects and he would smile at me but otherwise show no other signs that he knew me before high school. i used to think he was playing games with me, he's always been in the back of my mind, and i feel like screaming at him and at me. once, when a friend turned their back on me and was joining in calling me names, the boy actually stuck up for me and told the bullies to leave me alone. then he smiled and went back to ignoring me. its confusing me.

Also, when i was born the doctors thought i might have some problems with my reproductive systems etc so every 6 months till i was 11 i had to go for check ups. the doctor was male and he scared me. i hated lying on the hospital bed and letting him lift my skirt up. it was so humiliating i cried several times. i remember when i was ten my mother stopped the car outside the hospital and said quietly "the doctors going to have to look at everything today." i didn't stop crying for ages. when i was 11, it was a female doctor, i told my mother i wanted one at last. she wasn't as bad but it was still awful.

since i went to high school, especially in the later years, i've had many offers from boys (and from two girls) and i had to tell myself that i had to do what other girls my age were doing and there was something wrong with me because at 16 i still didn't want to let anyone close enough to kiss me. i pushed everyone away. i finally let one boy closer. i kept telling myself it was part of growing up and it was normal but every time he touched me i got the same feelings i got from the first boy who touched me. i felt dirty and ashamed and i hated myself. i started to cut myself three years ago but i've learnt to control it now.

all this has been building up gradually but i was trying to control it. i don't know what to do. i don't trust a lot of people and letting boys close scares me. help?

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Life isn't about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself.

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Ecofem
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I'm proud of you for getting the courage up to share with us, butterflie. Now let's see how we can help you with things.

First, major props for overcoming cutting on your own! That is a huuuge thing to have done, so make sure to give yourself credit where it is due.

Second, the molestation by that boy plus invasive, uncomfortable check-ups by the doctors makes it understandably very hard for you. You are wise to avoid kissing and other sexual contact as long as it doesn't feel right. You should not feel dirty or ashamed or hate yourself, but it's understandable why you did; hopefully, you're feeling a bit better now.

Sexual abuse really does affect us long-term. But there is life with positive sexual experiences after abuse, it just takes awhile working things out. Many posters can attest to this.

You say your parents are close but you don't feel comfortable talking to them about it: I would recommend going to a counselor to get help processing things. Do you think you could talk about this to a counselor, such as just showing her your post? The first step is the hardest but it's important.

There are a lot of books out there to help survivors of sexual abuse. One recommended by Scarleteen is this:

quote:
What book do you reccomend for addressing sexual abuse and recovery?
The Courage to Heal, by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis, and we recommend it as highly as we can recommend anything.

And here is a semi-related article:
http://www.scarleteen.com/crisis/hollie.html

I'm now going to look up past threads pertaining to this issue. There's another recommended book that I'll look up, too. Thanks for posting, butterflie.

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butterflie
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thanks for the advice, and for replying so quickly.
i'm starting college in september and there's a counselor on site and i'm going to talk to her.
i never thought of getting books or that they would help but i'll definitely try the one you recommended.
it's made me feel a lot better, telling someone at last. thanks again.

butterflie

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Life isn't about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself.

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Allysa
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Hey all,

I never had a good childhood as I had to sit back and watch my father pyhcially abuse my two brothers and sisters while my father never hit me, what I missed out on with him, they truly made up for.

I can't really remember if my abuse started when my dad left or when he was still there, I never remember him being there when it was happening so maybe it started after he left, I was six when it started.

I remember one night my oldest brother came into mine and my sister's room, woke me up and took me to his room, I didn't understand what was going on but he lead me to his room by holding my hand, I don't think me brother made me have sex with him or anything like that, but he did make me perform oral at age six and also made me urinate in his mouth ( I do apologise if this is a lil disturbing for you to read but I wanna share my story) I don't remember if my brother ever threatned me with the usual, if you tell no-one will love you or so on, I don't think that was ever an issue, I think because he was older I didn't think what was happening was wrong.

I'm a lil vage on how long this continued so forgive me for that, but growing I also had a friend of the family come visit a bit he used to come up and give me and my brothers and sister money, I must of been about 7 or 8 at the time and I was still at the age where I liked sitting on ppls lap, and yeah he didn't seem to mind either, I remember one instance where I was trying to get dressed in my room and he wouldn't leave so I tried to get changed under my blankets and he put his hand under the blanket trying to touch me, but again at that age I didn't understand why and I thought it was just a game, so I laughed it off.

I remember my mum used to go to the library alot so I was there a bit also and there was this one guy who was a complete stranger, again someone who gave me money only like a dollar or two but at that age any is good, I think I was also about 9 I used to sit on his lap and stuff and by that age I had started developing breasts so you can guess what he did, only untill my brother realised that's what was happening, he told me not to go near him again, I have two brothers both in one way or another abused me, My oldest brother did it when I was six and I think my other brother did it when I was a lil older, again oral sex.

I don't really remember much of my childhood but what I do remember I wish I didn't.

Um when I was In primary school I used to get teased alot, ppl used to say I smelt and were really quite cruel, umm, when I was in high school the teasing didn't stop and so by grade 8 I was very self conscious about myself and so on, a bf's friend tried to make me touch him, by that time I started having panik attacks but was un aware they were, they were diognosed as asthma, during an episode, my ex bf's friend actually felt me up whilst I was having one and was unable to stop him.

At 14, I was at my worst, I was suffereing from panik attacks, became suicidal and was being abused at home as well of at school, there was a guy on the bus who used to put his arm round the back of the seat and play with my breasts and vagina, and used to pull my arm around and put it in his trousers, by that age I knew it was wrong but I guess I enjoyed the attention, wasn't till afterwards that I knew how much it affected me, whilst I was getting that to and from school things were worse at home.

My next door neighbours were quite crude about my appearance as by the time I was 14 I had developed quite fast and for my body size my breasts stuck out the most, and boy did they point that out, my next door neighbours grand dad used to make comments such as, Ohh look at those tities would love to suck on those, mmm would love those nipples in my mouth, and so on, again I laughed it off, my next door neighbours uncle actaully used to ring me asking me to have sex with him and eventually chased me up the street because I said no, also my next door neighbours mum's ex boyfriend tried as well as her brother, so at 14 I was really struggling.

I eventually snapped and tried to commit suicide at school but was stopped by a teacher who eventually become and very big part of my life and also become a father figure which I felt I needed, he was always making sure I was ok and even pulled me out of class if he knew something was wrong and wouldn't let me leave until he saw me smile, so he pulled me through when I needed it and also put me in touch with the school councellor and I was in councellor for the remainder of my high school years.

The school coucellor out me in touch with member of Laurel house.

At 15 things didn't really improve I became sexually active and yeah the problems got worse, I slept with my best friends boyfriend and was made feel dirty when she found out, which was my own fault but he denied ever sleeping with me saying if he can't remember it it can't have been very good, damaging my self esteem even more than it already was, I lost my virginity to her bf over a one night stand after she found out, she only believed me a few months later after she found out he slept with one of the other girls.

I may have missed out other ppl who had abused me actually I have so forgive me for that, there are so many to list.

I had quite a few male friends in high school all of which liked me at the time ( not trying to seem on myself) and one of them also felt me up when I was having a panik attack.

One of their brother's and their friend also held me down and felt me up, again I found it funny and laughed it off as to me that kinda of stuff was life.

Also at 14, I had a bf who lived about and hour or so away and I became friends with most of his male friends, and he and a friend held me down and forced a vibrating mobile phone between my legs as a joke, but I flipped, one of his friends tackled me to the ground and forced himself ontop of me but I faught him off.

Um at 16 I got into my first serious relationship which lasted over a year, but even in that time I had my fair share of crap, I was taken advantage of whilst drunk by a male friend, but quickly stopped it, I was going through quite alot of drama because of all the abuse by this time my panik attacks were at their peak.

When the relationship ended I felt as though I would never be happy, but low and behold I met my current bf just before my 18 birthday and we became quite close, I told him about my history after an incident happened with the two of us, my bf didn't no my history nor that I suffered from panik attacks and thought I was letting him touch me when in fact I was unconscious from it, and also penetrated me and yes quite alot of drama there as my brother forced me to report him and he was charged with rape, but what my brother didn't know was that I had encouraged him to touch me and therefore what happened was not as it seemed, aslo an ex bf of mine that same night was being a jerk and as he put it wanted to see if anything had changed so he felt me up.

And then as you know recently I was raped by a high school college, so yeah, my life has been one big downer, I was forced to live a life of abuse and thinking that it was normal and now because of that I feel like I am worthless if I don't get that kind of attention, I feel ugly, and also because of being told I smelt I am very conscious of my body and compulsary shower daily more than once because I feel ppl will start saying I smell again, the worst day I've had in the way of that was I had three showers and two baths in the one day.

Now because of my history I am finding it hard to move past my anger and feelings towards guys, I love my bf but to me he is still male ( obviously) and often think his true feelings are that he is with me for sex, am because of that I am hurting him which is understandable.

I'm sorry if this post is very long but I just wanted to share my life thus far.

Since I was 14 I have used cutting as a means of coping as I feel numb inside and think that by cutting myself I am realesing some of that but instead even physical pain is hard to achieve as for me cutting doesn't hurt.

I have also battled eating disorders or at least the start of what could be, again at 14 I starved my self for a few weeks thinking I was fat, I have done that more than once, I have shut myself away from friends and become used to being at home alone and find it difficult to venture from my comfort zone, even more so now after the rape.

My bf is trying to stay strong for me but I fear it will become too much and he will leave, I have had countless relationships in my time as I feel like a whole when I have a bf, I feel I must have a bf and therefore getting the reputation as a slut because of my newmerous relationships, at 15 I became pregnant only to loose it a week later, I feel that I also must have a baby to feel apart of something, I worry that no one will ever marry me because of my many problems, thus fearing my current bf won't stay because I enter relationships with the mind frame of, Who could love me, no one has yet, they will leave you once they find out the true you, and so on.

I find it hard to get close to my bf but also at the same time and too attached and fear that will also be a problem if we did happen to brake up as I would become very depressed.

I have never had a very close relationship with my family because of the history and also never been very close with my mum, when I told her about my abuse I wrote her a 6 page letter when I was 15 and she put it in her bag and never spoke of it again.

At 15 I was also very rebelous and decided to do something I knew would upset my mum, I got my tongue periced, but to my surprise she got over it very quickly and even helped me chose different coloured balls for it, lol.

Anyway I might just stop now because I think you're pretty much up to speed with my life.

Sorry it is such a long post, the worst thing is now I have to read back through it and make sure there aren't any mistakes, YAY.

Sorry again [Mad]

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Ally

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Allysa
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I am really sorry guys, I really needed to vent that sorry it was so long.

REALLY SORRY

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Ally

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butterflie
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i think you're really brave to post that, i know it takes a lot to tell people. sometimes it helps to tell people you don't know.

you must be a really strong person to have gone through all that and come out of the other side ready to tell people about your experiences.

you shouldn't feel like a slut because of what other people did to you or because of what you did because you thought you had to.

be yourself and do what you want to do.

butterflie

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September
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Hey Ally. I don't even know what to say because there is so so much I could comment on. Just ... wow. No one should ever have to go through something like that. EVER.

But just one thing I wanted to share: I've been through several episodes of abuse and one rape myself and I used to feel very tainted and jaded about that and was convinced that no one would ever be able to get beyond that and love me for who I am. Then I met my boyfriend, and he's been there for me through everything and he loves me just the way I am.
And you know what? You're such an incredibly strong woman for having gone through all of that and still fighting it and trying to deal with it and working your way through it and living your life. And there are definitely guys out there who will realize that, and who will realize you're the product of your past and it's all a part of you somehow, and that you're a stronger person for it. Sounds like your boyfriend is one of them. Sure, he'll probably get overwhelmed at times, but it's important that you two talk about that and discuss your fears and hopes with each other. It can work out.

So. Big, big {hugs} to you. Keep fighting!

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Johanna
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cool87
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You don't have to be sorry for anything, Allysa. If sharing your story with us help you, so better be it.And I'm sure it will help as well other rape and abuse survivors.

Allysa, it's so hard for me to hear your story. I don't know if other feel like this as well but it's hard for me hearing something like that. We had not long ago in school a women who survived a rape and she came to tell us her story and it was also quite hard to take, she was the perfect example that it can happen to anyone, really anyone.

Being raped or abused is never something someone deserve in any case. We can't change past even when you would want to. So better be positive and deal with the present and future. What you went through can only make you stronger.You've learned things and experience things that maybe you wouldn't have learned otherwise. Of course, that's really not the best way to learn but we can do nothing about it.

You're kind of a big example of perseverance for me right now. You showed me that we're able to go through a lot of difficult things. Really I was quite shocked at how many rape you've had to overcome and was quite surprised at how you handle them. You were really strong Allysa. I think a lot of people would not have been able to go through all you went through. It's amazing how strong you've been. I really see you as an exception. Really, any time I'll have a difficult time, I'll remember you and tell myself anything is possible. You think you've lost everything, but no.

I really hope you know how really strong you are for being able to share this story with us Allysa ? It takes a lot of courage for sharing that and even more so when you've just went over a rape again not long ago if I remember well.

It takes sometimes years for people who've been raped to reach the point where they're able to tell their rape story. And yet, yourself are able to tell it. I just wanted to tell you how surprised I was of you, in a great way of course. Maybe you can't see yourself taking big steps but I can tell you that, myself, do see that and it's great to see that.

You said not long ago you had a problem talking about your rape with your counseler. May I suggest you something, Allysa ? You can't take it or leave it, do as you want. But I tought maybe it would be a great idea to print your post and give it to your counseler Elouise. Maybe this is a little easier way to let her know what happened other than having to tell her.

[ 08-21-2006, 02:06 PM: Message edited by: cool87 ]

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Allysa
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I've never thought of doing that, now I come to think of it, it may be an easier way to actually get things out, I was surprised at myself for being able to put myself on the line like I did yesterday, but I did it, it is very hard for me to read back through what has happened, even though yes I have been able to move past it that is hugely because I have not wanted to know about it, it was even harder when my mum didn't either, still to this day three years almost four after writting that letter she has never spoken to me about it.

I guess hearing that your baby girl has been through so much you don't want to admit it, cause to my mum I am still the baby of the family, I honestly don't feel as strong as you keep saying I am, last night again I was feeling as though giving up would be the easiest way, and was asking my bf to leave me as I felt useless to him the way I was, but even that wouldn't make him leave.

I am still very much stuck in the cycle of feeling alone and scared after the rape, I constantly ask my bf if the doors are locked, I have moments when he's not here where I feel like someone could walk in at any moment and do it to me again, I feel like I'm going mad been locked up in this house, but I can't bring myself to go for a walk alone.

It's so crazy, the poem I posted in The Beach thread yesterday is still very much how I feel, I still feel trapped in the cycle and very distant from things and as though the pain has taken over.

Thank you also butterflie and september for posting as well, your words were also very welcoming, and september feel free to say anything,lol, trust me I'm used to alot of things being said to me both good and bad so nothing will shock me.

Butterflie, even you saying I shouldn't feel like a slut as much as I want to say I don't I still do, I have always had a bf In my life one way or another whether it be short term or longer, and I have had a sexual relationship with about 5 ppl which I feel I shouldn't have had because, again in my other post I feel I shouldn't want sex as much as I do, but for me It's a way of feeling closer to someone, it's very messed up in my head.

But thank you all for reading my life's story and commenting, it's funny how you can see someone in the street and think they have the perfect life yet you don't know what has happened behind closed doors, that is very much the case for me, as I can look as though nothing could brake me, yet behind closed doors I'm like a scared lil child who fears everything, it's funny how to other ppl I can be what they want to see isn't it.

I wrote a story about my experience in grade 9 or ten and I called it Never Judge A Book By It's Cover, because at the time that is very much the way I felt, everyone who met me wanted what I had, my best friend not just last year said she wished she was like me, even knowing my past she thought I had everything, If only she knew the real me ay.

Again I know I shouldn't be sorry for how long the post was, but I feel very embarassed actually that I have been through so much, I feel as though it doesn't seem real and maybe some ppl think Oh as if, no one could have gone through that, It's very crazy.

Anyway If I keep talking I'll never stop, Thank you all.

Mwah

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Ally

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ladydexter
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I was doing okay, until a so-called friend, whilst we were having a debate about Plan B being abortion or not, came out with "There is nothing wrong with the fetus. There was no rape. The woman was focused on pleasing herself and not the consequences of her actions." (as an argument against the use of Plan B in a rape situation).

I was raped by not just anyone off the street, but my fiance at the time. I did absolutely NOTHING to provoke him, and while he was holding me down and ignoring my crying and telling him to stop, I sure as hell wasn't focused on pleasing myself. The only thing I was focused on was that he was doing something I didn't want, and wouldn't stop.

People don't seem to realise that brain and body don't work together at times like this. Your body just responds with "Oooh, sex!" and produces more discharge and what have you, even while your brain's screaming "NO! I don't want this! Stop!" Not in all cases, but in some, and then people argue that because you were enjoying it, it wasn't rape. That is not true. No matter what your body does, if your brain says "I didn't agree to this", it's rape, and it's wrong.

It took me six months to tell anyone what he did to me. My family still don't know. They never will. It'd kill my dad, to know that his only child was hurt like that. Either that or he'd kill the guy who did it. I still see the guy at the club that I go to (I'm the runner for security), but I was doing fine until my "friend" made that remark. Now I'm not so good.

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maybe
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The list that Ms. Scarlet posted actually made me cry, and I say that in the best possible way. Even though I *know* that beating myself with those thoughts is wrong and unfair, I still do it. Seeing it written so clearly like that, eh... it was important that I read that. Thank you for that post, you have no idea. This website and forum is a godsend.

Since it happened, I have been living with it pushed to the back of my mental queue. If I happen to remember, I tell myself that it's a fiction, but I think it's important that I do write this post to stop the lying, yes?

I had just become seventeen. He was a friend of a friend of a friend, and his band played at a house party out of town. I had too much to drink and he was pushing pot at me. I accepted. I flirted with him. For the first time in a long while I was around people who didn't know me as "the lesbian". So I flirted with him - flirting is fun, no? We talked and walked around the party. Alone. He seemed like such a nice guy, and from what I've heard he is. But obviously...

It happened there in a dark room that smelled like mildew. He forced me to give him oral sex, and etc. I don't think I can write that down, to be honest. But I didn't scream or yell. I made it very clear, but I didn't scream when someone surely would have heard. Because of fear, shame, complete intoxication, whatever, I don't know. It was paralysing to be in that situation. I do blame myself (For the reasons I listed above), but that's something I'm working on.

Orientation-wise, it's a two way street, meaning, depending on my mood, it's to blame for my gayness or my curiousity. I have not told my last two partners. I was on BCP and he didn't use protection, but I have had the tests and I am clean.

This is a worry. Partners ask me if I've ever been with a guy and I say no. This is lying, but should I consider that "being with a guy"? I don't, but technically I have had sex with a guy.
I am scared to tell a girlfriend this for so many reasons.

I have seen him several times since, which was extremely uncomfortable and distracting. I still remember, and the smell of mildew brings that back. I know that's a really inane trigger. I called a couple crisis lines after it happened, which really did help.

Now I realize that I haven't used the word "rape" once. So I'll write it for the first time. I was raped.

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thathollygirl
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I had been dating this boy for more than a year.

He forced me to have oral sex with him, and to swallow (he was, shall I say, not eating right?). He refused to reciprocate. Much later on in the relationship, toward the end, he insisted that I have sex with my "husband", and quickly did the deed while his father was outside gardening. I was fully naked, and he mostly clothed. It went on only long enough for him to achieve satisfation , and he was unprotected (he thought pulling out was protection enough). It was horrible, waiting to see if I was pregnant.

Later in the year, after the current boyfriend helped me through, I wrote the ex a note expressing how angry I was at him and how I did not want to be friends, because he was a rapist. "That was cruel and uncalled for," he said. We've not spoken since, but his sister says he's very sad I won't talk to him because he "just wants to be friends with me." She does not know about the rape, and neither does anyone but the ex and the boyfriend.

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flyin_fool
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Hi there. i'm not really sure how to say all of this, and i'm not even sure it will all make sense. but.. you know, try new things and all. you should probably know i'm a boy. i'm currently not seeing anyone. sort of gun-shy, i guess you could say. i am interested by both girls and boys, but not a whole lot of people all together.

when i was a kid, the summer when i was 10, i was at a cabin out-of-province with my family and some other friends familys. there were about 4 family units, so lots of moms and dads and kids and stuff all running around this mini-cabin village area campground place. Ours was the 2nd last one on the road, the last one being owned by this man named Darren. He didn't have any kids and was divorced, but was a nice enough guy. he'd come hang out with the families and stuff, cook dinner with us, and was sort of like an uncle or something.

one day, everyone was going to go out on the boats but i wanted to stay home and read my books and stuff (yeah yeah, i'm a nerd, i know) so my parents asked him to watch me. When he came over, he watched movies with me/while i read my books and stuff. He had a bunch of beers and smoked and stuff too. He got really loud and.. i'm not sure. friendly. told me to come sit by him and watch this movie with him. so i did, cause i didn't know any better.

when he started hugging me, i didn't really care. sometimes older people liked to hug. it was a thing. but then he started getting really.. he touched me on the bum, started rubbing the front of my shorts and stuff. i told him to stop and he told me that this was just how grown ups hugged. It was really uncomfortable. He made me "hug" him too, like he did with me. I didn't want to, but he made me, moved my arms and held me really close and stuff. He he took out his.. um.. equipment. made me touch it, and give him oral. i was crying and telling him i didn't want to, asking him to stop.
he kept rubbing me and touching my body, and put his fingers inside me. i cried more and screamed, but he clamped his huge hand over my mouth and kept choking me when i tried to scream or yell. He forced me on my front and did ... his.. thing to me. it felt like years and years and it hurt so bad. i ripped a lot of tissue and muscle, and still have some minor intestinal complications to this day.

one of my actual uncles ended up coming over to check on us and see if i wanted some ice cream or something, and found me crying by myself on the couch, bleeding and bruised and stuff. I didn't know what to tell him, i think i ended up saying something like "darren had an accident" or something. its all sort of.. blurry together. painful.

we prosecuted, he went to jail. it was so disturbing. i have night terrors about that still sometimes, but i had them almost every night for a year and a half or so after that, all the way through 6th and 7th grade, i remember. I quit all my sports and clubs and stuff, and ate a lot more. combined with the whole puberty thing, i got pretty large. and... i felt wrong. gross. dirty. bad. i didn't have a lot of friends, i wrote some pretty angsty poetry and stuff.

grade 10, i thought i could be better. not awesome. but better. so i started meeting new people, doing drama things and stuff. it was going okay for a few months, before i found out that he might be going on parole, for good behaivour or something. it felt like i fell over. i stopped talking to my friends and skipped class a lot. very dark time. I tried to... end the hurting. but i messed that up. had to get my stomach pumped and the lining had to reheal. spent some time in the hospital. went back to school in grade 11. tried the school thing again. it was.. hard. really hard. lots of family members and friends of mine died a lot that year. every month i went to about two funerals. i put the fun in funeral. haha?

sorry. its kind of weird to write about. i got some counciling, but never really talked much to the lady. it was really... its hard to say this kind of stuff out loud. hopefully i'm not the only one who thinks that here.

grade 12 after christmas, a friend of the family and I started getting sort of romantic. Blaire was his name. it was pretty cool for the first bit. i'd tried dating other girls and a boy or two, but i just didn't feel comfortable with any of them, so it never really went anywhere. blaire allready knew about darren, and tried really hard to respect me. so of course i latched onto him like a fat kid on cake.

i tried to force myself to nto be uncomfortable. i get wiggy when someone kisses me or touches me? i'll just touch and kiss my little brain out till i don't feel wiggy anymore! it sort of worked. i got drunk a lot of the time with him, outside school, which sort of helped. he was 20 allready, so he could buy booze for me and stuff.
we were going to have sex for the first time, and we got really drunk. i thought that would help me for some reason. but i guess it didn't. i got really scared, had flashbacks and stuff. i didn't want to. but he was really drunk, told me we should keep going, keep trying. i told him no, but he didn't really listen. it hurt really bad, and i ended up bleeding again and beign all gross.
i cried while he was going at it, and waited for him to pass out, before i had a shower and got dressed and left. i told him i never wanted to see him again, cause he hurt me. made me unsafe again. even now, about a year later, he calls and drops in and stuff, even though i've moved from my old city to go to school. he goes to the other school in the city now, and keeps trying to meet up. but i just can't do it. i can't see him. i can't do anything like that with him. anyone. just... no. you know?

i know i probably sound like a big fruit and i'll understand if you all think i'm completley warped. there aren't a lot of poeple i can talk to who can get it. or even try. its a lot of "boys can get raped. they like sex. end of story" kind of thing. no one really gets it.

okay. i'm done

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Heather
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Flyin_fool, we get it.

You don't sound like " a big fruit," you sound like someone dealing with all the myriad aspects of rape trauma and with trying to both survive and find a way to heal and reclaim your life and your own sexuality.

ALL of this stuff is the case for ANY rape survivor, no matter their gender. And anyone who tells you any given person can't be raped based on their own bias and arbitrary critieria -- because someone's male, because someone has had sex before, because someone has liked sex rough in the past, because someone is wearing this thing, or was dating their rapist, the ridiculous list goes on and on, and our culture likes so much to pretend rape isn't a problem, if they can find ways to make it less visible, they'll try -- is woefully misinformed.

ANYONE can find themselves in the position of another person forcing sex on them they do not want. Even if you're a boy who lies sex? rape isn't sex. Not for the person being raped, it's not.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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flyin_fool
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thanks for listening to the rant-action. It feels good to have other people out there. but also really sad. cause there shouldn't be any of us anywhere. ever.

its not right

i've been having issues with triggers. sexual jokes, to personal touching, stuff like that. it just bugs me, and things flood back. it makes it really hard to socialize with the other people at school. even my roommate, who pretty much knows the whole story, doesn't quite get it. why i sleep with my door locked, the window closed, a lamp on, the closet checked, under the bed checked, with a knife and my phone right next to me.

are there any other people who do this? or any guys out there in cyberland who can relate?

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Bebop Bodhisattva
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I've never even considered telling anyone about this. I hesitated to make this post because of the off-chance someone I know coming upon the forum, reading my posts and figuring out who I am. Really, the sexual abuse survey triggered it. This happened nine years ago and, it did not really hit me until after I'd filled out the survey that I'd been sexually abused. I had never thought about it in those exact words.

My strategy since then has been "pretend it never happened." Intellectually, I realize that I was taken advantage of. But no, just no. I don't know where it comes from, but I just don't want to think of myself as a victim, especially not the victim of sexual abuse, and everything that comes with that.

I was 9, he was 13. We had been friends for a long time, but things had started to change (which I guess could be chalked up to puberty.) My parents were used to having him around, and trusted him, and so did I.

I had a laser tag set. At one point, he'd suggested that the matches determine something afterwards. We would play "interrogation" and have the loser undergo tortue (presumably he'd been wounded and captured by the enemy, you see.) I had no idea what any of that meant, but he was always into military stuff so I followed his lead, assuming he knew what he was talking about. I wasn't sure if I wanted to do any of this, but he was older and therefore cool and so I figured "Why not?". I agreed, feigning enthusiasm.

He proceded to let me win each and every time (I was under the impression that I had become quite the marksman.) Each and every time would also result in him giving me directions, since I had no clue what to do. And each and every time it would always result in him in a state of undress, and suggesting things I should do to his penis (all in the perfectly innocent context of torturing a prisoner, of course.) It made me very uncomfortable, and confused because I didn't even really know what we were pretending to be doing. As it went on, he started "cutting to the chase" sooner and sooner. It really wasn't all that traumatic when it was going on. I just wasn't having much fun.

Eventually, he wanted to play strip poker. As usual, he was letting me win. This time, though, my parents came home earlier than expected. He hadn't fully dressed when they came in the room and his shirt was off and his belt unbuckled. They talked to me, and I did everything to make it seem like nothing had happened. I don't remember much of the details of that, except answering "no" when they asked if I had seen him naked. I felt like if I had told them the truth, they would get the wrong idea. I knew about sexual abuse, but he would never do that to me and I would never fall for it if he tried. That was the last time I saw him.

I really can't say it affected me all that much. I forget it happened a lot. I didn't realize until years later that I had been taken advantage of in order to play into his masochistic fantasies. Even then, it didn't have a huge impact. I refused to let it bother me. I refused think about it, period. I've had what I would consider a fairly healthy sex life in the intervening period. I don't really think of it as my first sexual experience.

My complicity in it is part of it, I think. He was never forceful, I probably could have stopped it at any time. I know it's stupid, but I do feel like I should have known better than to fall for that. I could have walked away at any time, and I should have been smart enough to realize what was going on and that it would have been okay for me to refuse.

Sorry if this is a little disjointed.

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"This war all around us is being fought over the very meanings of words." - Chad Dumier, Deus Ex

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smyrnagirl
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I was raped when I was 23 by a guy I was dating. It was only a little over a year ago. I was a virgin before him, which was always really important to me. He was 9 years older than me and I later learned had been with a lot of other women. He did not use protection with me, so I have no reason to think he did with anyone else either.... I blame myself often... So many of the things I have seen here-I should have known better than to be alone with him...I was willing to be physical with him up to a certain point, so "I got what I deserved"... What is wrong with me that would make me trust someone so sick?
I am doing a lot better now, and a little over a month ago I married a wonderful guy that loves and respects me, but sometimes the memories still make me sad...

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Alea
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I was sexually abused for over three years by my stepbrother. It's not something that is easy for me to talk about, even though I feel like I've dealt with it. He was only two years older than me, and the abuse started when I was nine or ten years old. Because he wasn't much older than me, I didn't think of it as sexual abuse. I still have a problem viewing it as sexual abuse - that's something that perverted old men do to little girls. It doesn't count if your abuser is a kid, too.

I remember the incident that started it - somehow, his shorts slipped while we were sitting on the couch. Being a normal kid, I said "ewww", and that was that. Until later, when we were playing in his room - he took it out again, and made me touch it. I didn't like it, and I didn't want to, but I was a shy child with no self confidence who was easily bullied into doing things that I didn't want to. I remember him telling me that if I didn't do what he wanted, he'd tell my mother, and she'd be mad at me. He kept telling me that his mom said that this was what girls and boys were supposed to do. He told me a lot of things, all of them designed to force me into doing something that I didn't want to.

The abuse quickly escalated, and happened on a daily basis. It went from "touch here" to "put your mouth here", and the threats that he made grew more meaningful. Sometimes he would hit me. He didn't always do it to make me perform sexual favours, although he didn't have any compunction about doing that.. the hitting became a little ritual all on it's own, where he'd lock us in his room or my room and just hit me for hours. Sometimes he'd just slap me around. Sometimes he used his fists. One thing he really liked doing was throwing a basketball at me over and over again as hard as he could.

This abuse continued for years, on a daily basis - both the sexual and the physical. Eventually my step brother and his sister moved back in with their mother. Sometimes, they'd come for a visit.. whenever Dustin was staying at my house, I knew that it'd happen again. I spent weeks at a time waiting for it to happen, and sure enough, it would. The last time was when I was fourteen. He took me back into the laundry room, forced me to my knees, and thrust into my mouth. I was scared and I felt bad, but figured that it'd all be over with soon. Our parents came home early and thought I was acting weird. They found out that something had happened, but instead of telling them about the abuse, I let them think that we'd just been fooling around. Because of that, my family branded me as a whore. My grandmother still brings it up today.

I've talked this over with a few people in my life, most notably my boyfriend. He's helped a lot with the issue, but I still feel sometimes like I haven't really been abused. I didn't fight enough - sometimes, I physically enjoyed it. It was my fault. He wasn't much older than me, so it can't have been abuse. I deserved to be hurt. All these thoughts go through my mind whenever I think about it. I feel tainted, dirty, like I've done something wrong. And even though I've talked about it, sometimes late at night I'll still cry, because not only did he hurt me, he hurt how I see myself.

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Obscurity is the refuge of the incompetent.

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Miss Torchie
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I'm not even sure if this would count as a rape or anything, it's probably more a sexual assualt, but I was taken advantage of by someone whom I thought was my friend... he told me to touch places that just... shouldn't be touched by people like him, and I was only maybe six or seven at the time, and I think he was a teenager but I'm still haunted by it, some ten odd years later... people ask me why I'm so shy and scared around boys... that's why. I can't tell them...

I'm glad my school taught us about bad touches. I told my parents instantly and they called the police. I'm so glad my Daddy was there to tell me it wasn't my fault. I guess I was lucky...

Oh boy, I'm in tears now. I haven't thought about this in a long time. I guess it affected me more than I thought it did originally...

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"I'm confused. Who are you? Where am I? And more importantly, what's for dinner?"

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DanaR
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Hello, Heather. Can't PM you.

I am not actually a rape survivor, but have been brought up with a very strong awareness of my mothers rape and consequently have triggers and panic-attacks and a complete lack of ability to deal with it.

I want to comment on here but my post is guaranteed to be ridiculously long - would you mind?

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Karybu
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(Dana, obviously I'm not Heather, but feel free to go ahead and post. Long posts are nothing new here - if you need to get something off your chest, go right ahead.)

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"Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing." -Arundhati Roy

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Kahmiel
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Let me just say, there is a part of me that can't actually believe I am posting this here, seeing how I can barely talk about these events to my boyfriend.

I've been sexually abused/molested by my freshman highschool bus driver, every day, for several months. Forced to do things in a theatre that I never wanted to do with a boy in my drivers ed class. A man I met at the pool took a "walk" with me that involved me getting slammed against a fence followed by molestation. And a family trip to cancun ended in gang rape by some frat boys who happened to be staying at the same hotel as me. I know that the last one happened, even though I can't remember most of it, I can remember enough to know it did.

I really still dont like to say or type any of it. And i dont really know if im capable of saying any of this out loud, the boy who forced me to do things to him in the theatre verbally abused me for several months and forced me into therapy. I hate to say it, but from the entire experience(s) I've learned alot about myself, and become a much stronger person because of it, even prevented it from happening to me again. I dont think Ill ever be okay with what happened, but I am no longer afraid of them, at least as much as I was.

-Kahmiel

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Heather
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Kahmiel: I've had a hard time sometimes myself addressing the "good" parts of what resulted from surviving abuse. It's such a sticky wicket, because there, of course, is NOTHING good about being abused or assaulted, so I know I've felt very uncomfortable telling non-survivors about positive results I netted from surviving and from my process of survival.

Especially in a culture which is so quick to diminish how terrible abuse and assault is.

So, I hear hating to say it. But in my experience, it's sound to separate recovery and survival from the actual abuse, because they are different things, much in the same way that for those who survived the Holocaust, they, too, will often have netted positives in surviving that absolutely does NOT mean the way in which they were tortured and abused is positive or okay.

I like to think of it this way: the abuse and assult was theirs -- was that of our abusers. But surviving is OURS. After all, they didn't want us to thrive or survive: WE had to make that happen, WE did that work. And it's such a hard process, involving so much self-awareness, self-evaluation, observation and struggle that it's a given it'll have positives, since it is a positive, forward movement we're making.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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takemetovenus
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This thread is really old! I'm still going to post though. This will be long, and I'll probably mention specifics.

I'm 18 years old now, and from when I was 9 until I was 13 I was sexually abused by my then-stepmother. She said that was how grownups love each other. At that point I'm not sure if I'd heard of sexual abuse, but I know I'd never heard of female-to-female abuse. I blocked it out up until a couple of years ago, but when I was 15 I tried to kill myself and got shoved in a psych hospital, and I had problems with cutting for several years. I stopped recently, and I'm not sure what made me, but I'm glad I did. It's definitely not the best approach but it's still hard for me to resist sometimes.

My stepmother would touch me everywhere, kiss me, etc., and there was oral sex (both ways). The worst was she used to put the handle of a knife in me and make me bleed. Sorry for the crudeness. I literally can't put into words how painful it was; it hurt for a few days afterward and made it hard for me to sit, walk, go to the bathroom. One morning in fifth grade (I was 10? 11?) was the first time she used the knife handle. I think I screamed; I know I was crying hysterically. I didn't understand what was happening. It didn't even process in my brain. I just felt this indescribable pain and it was as if I began blocking it out the instant it started happening. When I tried to kill myself in the 9th grade (OD), that entire night my whole body just shook uncontrollably. It was exhausting and frightening because I couldn't stop it. THAT'S what it felt like with my stepmother, but not...physically. I can't really explain it. It's like I couldn't focus on anything because my MIND was shaking.

So that morning (I'm so sorry, feel free to skip, I just have to tell someone) after I got over the initial shock I looked down at her and she had my blood on her face, and she was smiling. She pulled me towards her and kissed me for a while and then took me to the mirror and I saw my own blood all over my face. That's the main, and worst, flashback that I have a lot. She made me sit on ice cubes in the bathtub for a while, and then she sent me into school at noon. I was crying, probably limping, and my teacher called my parents (who still don't know, I think) but they brushed him off, probably thinking I was still upset over their divorce.

She gave me a book when I was nineish about children sold into prostitution. She said that happened to them because they were "bad", and told me not to be "bad." So of course I was terrified that would happen if I protested too much; I kept telling myself it was better to have her do it to me than a bunch of random men because at least she loved me. She told me if anyone ever made me uncomfortable or hurt me, I should tell someone I trusted; kind of circular because that person was, of course, her. (Rarely saw my dad; mom emotionally abusive.) I knew she wouldn't love me anymore if I told someone what was going on. I just wanted someone to love me, is that so terrible?

Now I have real problems with flashbacks and nightmares; recently I've been having this recurring dream where I'm getting raped in the middle of the night in the back of a pickup by a man and there's another man standing there with a hood up, and when it's finished he takes off his hood and it's my stepmom. I start to panic when I smell a certain perfume. I flinch at everything, hate physical contact, and back up when someone gets "too close" to me. (People get offended at that.) I have a major shame/guilt complex and hate myself passionately. And even though I'm 18 I've never had a boyfriend and have never kissed anyone (else).


Tomorrow's my first gyno appointment and I am absolutely terrified. During the abuse I used to kind of "space out" or whatever, kind of split off like part of me went...somewhere else and then I wouldn't remember what had happened. I know that sounds crazy; bear with me. I'm just afraid that will happen tomorrow or I'll lose control or...God only knows.

So out of all this -- was what happened rape? And Heather, or anyone, do you have any suggestions for what I can do to get through and over this? Anything.

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Heather
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Venus, I literally only have a minute, as I just got home and did a quick check of things before bed, so I can only have a sec, but wanted to be sure to tell you how you can help make tomorrow something other than a scary or bad experience for you.

DO be sure and tell your GYN that you are a child sexual abuse survivor, that it is your first exam, and that it is entirely possible you may be triggered by, or dissociate during (that's what that spacing out you're talking about is, dissociation), the exam. Tell them before you disrobe, before anything. I'd also ask them to help you out by simply telling you what they are doing clearly through the exam, and checking to make sure you're okay a few times throughout.

And it is ABSOLUTELY okay for you to do that. Someone with a physical disability should be able to ask for needed adaptations and get them, and the same goes with a survivor, and plenty of doctors completely get that.

So, I can hop back by tomorrow and chat more, but wanted to try and leave something you'll hopefully see before your exam. Hang in there, gal.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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takemetovenus
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Hey, Heather, thanks. I did read it before I went and I told my doctor. She had a nurse come in and hold my hand; it was still unbearable but it helped so much just having ten square inches of human contact, I'm not sure why. I was crying during the breast exam and got almost hysterical when she started with the speculum, and she got worried and kept asking if I was sure I was ready for it, and I told her yes, though clearly I wasn't, which she realized and she STOPPED. She just...didn't do it. She went ahead with the internal exam which was AWFUL but with the speculum...she saw how painful it was for me and she stopped. And it was so empowering, oddly enough, although I was furious at myself that I wasn't the one to stop it -- again.

Most of my reaction was purely physical; I KNOW she's a doctor, I KNOW she has no ulterior motive for doing the exam, I KNOW she's not trying to hurt me. But it's just embedded in my physical memory, I guess, which overrides logic sometimes, if that makes any sense at all. So I guess it's good for that part of me, even though I'm not really in touch with it, that I now have that kind of an experience where someone hasn't hurt me. I did ask a friend to come with me and she just sat down with me outside and talked for like 3 hours. I don't remember most of it but I was talking to her today and what she told me scared me -- she told me I dissociated (your word, not hers [Smile] ) multiple times. But she described it to me and said I just sat staring off into space, shaking and crying and like flinching every few minutes. I don't know if I was having flashbacks or what, because I don't remember, but that's what it sounds like. She said I was completely unresponsive and didn't answer when she talked to me, and I only "snapped out of it" when she touched me on the arm, and I also apparently flinched at that. I just kept fading in and out...for 3 hours.

It's painful enough for me to think about normally -- but was I thinking about something then that I'm not aware of now, that I have to make myself forget? I don't know, that really scares me. It scares me that there's something so painful for me to think about that my mind just erases itself.

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