This is a huge personal debate for me. I am not sure that I want to write about this subject. However, lately I have been feeling the urge to do so. I have literally two people in my entire life who I have talked to about this and it’s weird to share it with anyone who may come across this article. This is something that is delicate and not going to be full of details. I have gone back and forth in my mind about if I even was going to write it and decided that I could, but not focus too much on the nitty gritty details. The other thing that I decided is that I wanted to do it because I want any other person out there who has gone through something like this to know that it doesn’t define them, it doesn’t need to control their life, and that they can still be a strong and amazing person. I also want to share the reasons why I have struggled with the decision to write this article. I want to either help people understand others that may have gone through it but to encourage those who have gone through it to know that it shouldn’t stop them from having a voice.
Even now, I am struggling with how exactly to word it. I don’t know how I want to put it on paper because part of me doesn’t want to. I guess the only clear-cut way to put it is, that as I child I was a victim of prolonged sexual abuse. Something that continued to happen over a longer period of time. How long did it go on? I honestly am not sure. I was really young, and I don’t really have a way to figure out when it started and when it ended. It happened until I got old enough to fully realize that I could say no. Thankfully, once I was brave enough to say I would refuse to do anything anymore, it stopped and never happened again. I have kept quiet about the situation for such a long time, and there are reasons why.
I Blamed Myself
This is not the typical blaming yourself that you hear about when sexual abuse is brought up. When I say I blamed myself, I am not saying that I did something to make someone else make a bad choice. I literally thought that the decision was mine and I chose to do something wrong and dirty. I believed that because someone didn’t threaten to harm me that it wasn’t actually sexual abuse. The first person that I ever discussed the situation with, was as an adult to another adult. Talking through some of the thoughts and memories, I realized how wrong I was. First of all, I was way too young to be able to consent to such a thing. I don’t remember exactly how old I was, but I know it was somewhere between the ages of 7-9 years old. Second of all, I remember hating every second of it. I remember things that were said to manipulate me. I remember saying that I didn’t like it. I was an adult with my own children before I realized that I could not take the blame when I was so young and had expressed how much I didn’t want it. I think back and wonder how I ever could have thought that I chose it. I never wanted it, I felt trapped and unable to remove myself from it. Truth be told, until that moment I never actually thought of the other person as an aggressor.
I Put it Behind Me
Because I had considered the whole thing one really messed up choice that I had made, I moved on from it. There was a time that I encouraged my little brother to try something dangerous and stupid. He ended up getting really hurt. He was okay but I remember feeling a lot of guilt that I had been a party to it. However, there was nothing I could do to change the event. So, I tried to learn from it and move on. I looked at the sexual abuse much the same way. I did something horrible and there was nothing I could do to change what I had done, so move on. Until the conversation happened again, I realized how much that I didn’t remember about it. I had blocked out some of the worst parts and some of them came crashing back down on me once I actually put it into words. It was more than a little confusing to have all these new emotions on something that I thought I had put behind me. However, the emotions that I was having was not the same emotions that I had then. Because I thought of myself as the bad guy instead of victim.
This is probably one of the biggest hold ups for me. I don’t like the idea of any family or friends reading this. I don’t want them to think of me any different. I don’t want them to look at me with pity. I don’t want them to look through my history and try to figure out who all was involved. I worry about those loved ones wanting to talk about it and get any extra information. I know that I can tell them no, and I most likely would for most of them. I am not ashamed of what has happened to me, and I share it because I want to help others who may need to hear it. The thought of discussing it with others who may need help or reconciliation is the whole reason I decided to do it. I just don’t want those around me thinking that they need to help me.
I am NOT a Victim
I considered not writing about this because I didn’t want people to think it was an excuse. I didn’t want them to think that I was a victim or broken. I am NOT a victim! I am NOT broken! I know that I am strong and capable and powerful! Not BECAUSE I went through some tough things but DESPITE what I went through. The credit for making it through anything difficult does not go to the aggressor but to me! When I hear of something horrible that another person has gone through, it makes me feel like they are so much stronger, not that they are weaker. I have feared that people wouldn’t look at me that same way. However, I also know that what others think doesn’t change anything for me. My life is still improving, and I am still getting mentally stronger every day. I know that happiness is a state of mind, and I get better and better and having true happiness in my life more and more. The control I have with my life is like the control I have in a car. I have the steering wheel. If I allow someone else to put their hands on that steering wheel than I am allowing them to take control of my life. I am strong enough to stop that and keep my own control.
If you are struggling with things that are happening to you or that have happened in the past, I urge you to do whatever it takes to heal and move forward with rapidity and force. If you feel that someone else has control of your wheel, find the strength or the help to take that control back. I am here, I am willing to listen. If you don’t have someone to go to, or just need someone who has no preconceived notions…. I am here.
3 responses to “My Confession”
Hey, thank you for sharing this. I can totally relate to you. I have been blaming myself, though I do not remember the exact details, but I do remember all the horrible episodes. Never discussed it with anyone, may be because I had fear that people would not believe me, and now I am not that strong to open an old wound. But I bow down to you to come out with it and accept that it was not your fault.
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I really appreciate you reaching out. It was difficult to make the decision to put it out there. However, the reason I did was exactly for people like you and me. So, it means a lot to have you comment. I know at times I definitely don’t feel very strong, but I am learning to give myself credit for the strength I do have. You obviously have some strength yourself. I applaud you for continuing to move forward even without having discussed it with anyone. I also know it does take strength to even reach out in the frame of a comment on the article, or the articles that you write on your own site. What was it that pushed you to start your own blog with your own articles?
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Thank you for the kind words. It genuinely took a lot of strength to comment. To be frank, I would not have if there had been other comments appreciating your post. Not a single soul knows about my difficult childhood and the trauma it still causes. I wanted to open up about it but never got the guts to do it; so when I read your experience I wanted to let you know that there are people out there and the reason behind your post has been accomplished. It doesn’t matter who responds and who doesn’t. Keep doing it. All the love and strength to you. I guess my pent-up emotions pushed me to start my blog.