Sexual abuse is a serious crime, one of the worst types of experiences to have to live through. When it happens to children, it infuriates me and renders me helpless. I wish I could wrap my arms around each victim and whisper in their ear that I am sorry and that I understand 100% how they are feeling.
I really struggled when I first started this blog, with what I was going to write about, especially after I began reading other mom blogs. It has been a little bit frustrating because the majority of the women writing these blogs are happily married. They come from good backgrounds, from what I can tell, and I have even seen family support as one writer’s dad left comments on her blog.
Don’t misunderstand, I am not jealous of these wonderful women. I am so happy that there are still good family units and that I have been allowed to be a part of learning about them and hearing their family stories. I love to hear about others’ successes. I do get a little bit envious and wish my life had turned out different. But, I know my own limitations and have become content with being who I am today and single.
I am learning to love life, but I cannot avoid this topic forever in this blog. And, while I have other stories out there about my experiences, talking about them in this blog scares me because I am becoming personally connected with the other bloggers I have hooked up with at Bloppy Bloggers. Aside from my Terpening blog (which I wrote in defense of my actions), where I have a few followers, I never was serious about blogging and getting to know other bloggers.
I have been sitting on this post for a couple of days, crying, debating, unsure of my next move. And, it is with great regret that I feel the need to post this. But, as a sexual abuse advocate, I have to move forward with this post. I cannot hide this, just because I am afraid of what others will think.
My heart is torn wide open today. I blame Facebook for half of my mental distress. There are many people on my Facebook who might see the link to this post, so I’m not sure if I will post it and block those people, or if I will go ahead and shout it out and in the process, start a war. No names are used in this story, but anyone mentioned that is on my list and a part of this story would be able to put their name to it…if they can face their own failures and how they treated me.
So, here goes…
She was just 14 years old, a young girl raised in a strict religious environment. She had dreams of someday marrying a nice man, having a family, and being married ‘forever’. She intended to stay a virgin until she got married, despite what she had already been through: child sexual abuse.
At a church her famiy previously attended, a 15-year old teenager had started molesting her when she was 9 years old. The abuse continued until she was 12. Even though he had not ‘raped’ her or took her virginity, he did plenty of other things to make up for it.
She was afraid to tell anyone. Her parents were good friends with the boy’s parents, and she knew they woud not believe her, and, if they did, she would get into trouble. Her parents just could not comprehend that she was not the only ‘bad kid’ in church.
She was unsure of what was wrong with her because her mom spanked her nearly every day. Her brother rarely got into trouble, and she took plenty of ass whoopings for things he did and blamed her for. Her home environment was not overly pleasant. She was always at fault and rarely heard good things about herself. Nothing she did was ever good enough for her parents.
Her family left that church and found a different one, closer to where they had bought a house and moved to. This church was in a small community, and the pastors of most of the churches in that area were friends. Her new pastor was a nice man, a retired-cop turned preacher. During this time, she met a young man who was the son of another local pastor. She was 12 years old. He was 18 years old. Once, in conversation, he told her how his dad had helped runaways and other kids in trouble.
She had become a little bit boy-crazy by then and developed a crush on the young man. He seemed like a nice guy and was the first boy she ever kissed. At that time, she could not see the error in this and fell a bit in love with him. Yes, she was curious about kissing and boys but was not contemplating the idea of having sex.
A couple years later, her dad beat her with a 1 x 4. She ran away and went to find this young man and his parents for help. She already knew that there was no one who would help her, despite what they knew about her home life. No one at church would help us. My grandparents acted like they didn’t know what was going on. She felt helpless.
When she finally reached the young man’s house, where he lived with his parents, she had a bad feeling. She was scared and wished she hadn’t ran away from home but was afraid to go back because of the punishment waiting for running away to begin with.
She rode her bicycle through a terrible thunderstorm and was cold and drenched when she arrived. She was in a bit of shock, as well, from fear of getting hit by lighting as the road she traveled ran between huge corn fields.
Long story short, the young man did not have her best interests at heart. She never did see or hear his parents while she was there. He chained and padlocked her bicycle to a tree. He became sexually aggressive with her, and she told him no and that she wanted to stay a virgin until marriage. He backed off, but within a short amount of time, he started in on her again. He would not back off then and became more and more coercing and pushy.
She didn’t know what to do. She had just turned 14. He was 20. She knew the police were looking for her, and she was afraid she would go to jail when they found her. She wished she was still at home. She would have preferred the beatings from her father over what was about to happen to her.
He raped her multiple times. After dark, he unlocked her bicycle and told her to leave, sending her off in the dark. (They lived in the country and places were miles apart.) She went to her friend’s house, who hid her form her own mother to try and help her. She was caught the next morning and returned to her parents.
She stayed silent about what happened. She knew very little about sex to begin with and did not know how to handle the situation. A few weeks later, her mom heard her quietly talking on the phone with her girlfriend, “What if I am pregnant?”
All hell broke loose. At a meeting at their church with their pastor, her mom decided to do nothing except blame her. She told her it was her fault it happened because she ran away. She told her that there would be no more discussion about what had happened. The pastor did nothing, either. He must have been out of his element, as he was good friends with the young man’s dad.
She left the church with her head hung in shame, her cheeks flushed red in embarrassment. She would never be the same again. That horrible night traumatized her and would be the cause of nightmares for many years to come. A switch was flipped inside of her, and years of anger started to seep out of her.
At first, the seepage of emotions was like a pinhole leak in a balloon. But, in time, the hole grew to be much bigger.
Alone, she started her descent into the pits of hell…
It is out. That was the short version of what happened. And, no, I don’t sit around crying about this today, not normally.
What I wasn’t expecting this morning was to be trolling someone’s pictures on Facebook and coming across a picture of him. I spent several years looking for him, and I found a trail of addresses but had no luck on a current one. After six years of therapy, I finally came to the decision that I couldn’t keep hanging onto this. I needed to find a way to forgive him because my anger and hurt was not affecting him, only me.
I thought I had truly forgiven him. Until today. I have not seen this man since I was a teenager. The feelings of shock, anger, and betrayal consumed me and flowed through every orifice of my body. I saw a flash of white as I choked up and stopped breathing.
It pisses me off to see that he is ‘happily married’. It pisses me off that I had to carry this ALONE all these years. It hurts me because this stuff has messed with every relationship I have been in. I do not trust easily, and I don’t know if I will ever be able to trust a man again.
My thoughts were everywhere. I was not prepared to come across him on Facebook. I had already searched for him. Funny that he and his wife share an account in a similar fashion of ‘Johnand’, with his wife’s name and their last name. No wonder I couldn’t find it under ‘John’. (That’s not his real name.)
I knew I would come across him again one day, but I thought it would be in person. I thought I could handle it. Now, I can’t help but think things like,
- There are no statute of limitations on 1st degree CSC in Michigan. Maybe I should see if he can be charged and pay for what he did to me.
- I could send a few of my homeboys to see him.
- I can try to forget I even saw his picture (yeah right, that shit will be burned into my memories).
- Maybe I should send him a message telling him how his actions destroyed my parts of my life.
- Maybe I should send him that message with a link to this blog, so he can read it for himself, so he can carry part of this weight for once. Would that lessen the constant pain I still feel from the abuse?
There are so many things going through my mind right now. I know the best thing to do is to not take any actions while I am feeling this way. I do not want my actions to be based on anger and impulsiveness. I need a clear head and a few days to give myself a chance to calm down and think and act rationally.
OK…forget the ‘think rationally’ part. Duct tape can’t fix crazy…or stupid.