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sheryl
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As a child i was sexually abused and raped by my older brother and his best mate from the age of 9-12 now i'm 20 and married with a 6 month old daughter, I blamed myself i felt so dirty I wanted a way to escape what i was feeling, my abusers told me that i asked for it so i got what i asked for and i believed them, I tried to commit suicide 4 times and once i even tried to hang myself i wanted so badly to die i still feel like that sometimes like everyones would be so much better off with out me in there lives and causing them grief such as my husband, when commiting suicide failed i turned my pain and frustrations back on myself, i was angry at myself for letting it happen it was my fault so i started to self-harm i started to cut away the pain it was also a good way to relieve everything else i felt, I re-live the abuse everyday i hardly sleep at night because i have nightmares and then during the day i'm plagued by flashbacks, i self-harm as a way of releasing any pain and fears i have, i find myself disconnecting with the world around me and i feel so alone.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Sheryl,

It is an awful thing but all too common that those who have been raped as children or teenagers blame themselves for what happened. In fact, adults who are raped often blame themselves. However, it is NOT TRUE. You did nothing wrong. Your brother and friends are like many rapists: blame the victim instead of their own sick behavior.

You are not dirty and you do not deserve to die. What you deserve is to feel angry at the rapists and not at your self.

Also, you are experiencing Post Traumatic Stress. Yes, people suffer that even years after the event. All of the symptoms you describe is Post Traumatic Stress.

I want to urge you to continue to write to us, here, and get support from others who have experienced rape, either as children or adults.

Also, I want to urge you to enter psychotherapy to help you with the suffering you experience with this.

Finally, I want to urge you to enter one of the many self help groups for people who have been raped and there are such groups around the nation.

Can you tell us more about your self?

Allan

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I have suffered with depression/anxiety since I was a teenager - i was repeatedly abused for years. I have sought help for my depression/anxiety, preferring to learn strategies to live with these conditions as opposed to go thru psychotherapy for the trauma.

But after 16mths of counselling, in various forms, my dep/anxiety is as severe as it was 16mths ago - i wonder, will psychotherapy for the trauma help me? I am reluctant to outlay MORE money in the 'hope' that it will help. I am of the opinion that 'stuff happens' and I"ve just gotta live the best life I can but I can't deny that I often get stuck in life and that my dep/anxiety is debilitating.

Can anyone tell me if they got any benefits from talking about their experience of abuse. Can the administrator tell me 'why' psychotherapy is suggested for abuse victims and what a client would expect from this kind of therapy.

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thanks for the advice from the admininstrator, it's hard to not to blame myself i've learnt not to blame myself so much,i see a therapist who has taught me not to balme myself so much, but i still find it very hard not to be angry at myself , with my therapist we have been discussing post traumatic stress but i haven't been diagnosed with it yet.

I still feel suicidal sometimes and the only thing that stops me is my husband and little girl i don't know how to stop these thoughts

is psychotherapy helpful?

there isn't alot else to me only that i love to read, i'm currently at college doing a return to study course and in that course i'm studting english, maths, physiology and psychology

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hi bekstar

through my experience with councelling i have found it both helpful and painful, it helps to talk to someone you don't know about things like this but once i started to open up i found it was really painful opening old wounds that hadn't really healed, i've been having flashbacks and nightmares for years now but there getting worse i wish i knew away to get rid of them.

but as for the pychotherapy i've never had it so i couldn't tell you if it works or not, i hope your feeling better with the depression and the anxiety i suffer with depression and its so hard sometimes to get out of bed in the mornings but i have to with my little girl i know what your going through.

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But after 16mths of counselling, in various forms, my dep/anxiety is as severe as it was 16mths ago - i wonder, will psychotherapy for the trauma help me? I am reluctant to outlay MORE money in the 'hope' that it will help. I am of the opinion that 'stuff happens' and I"ve just gotta live the best life I can but I can't deny that I often get stuck in life and that my dep/anxiety is debilitating.

Can anyone tell me if they got any benefits from talking about their experience of abuse. Can the administrator tell me 'why' psychotherapy is suggested for abuse victims and what a client would expect from this kind of therapy.

Hi-

You seem very frustrated with your therapy experience thus far. I can definitely understand that it seems like it's not working and that you have invested lots of time, $, etc.

Psychotherapy is suggested for abuse victims for several reasons:

1) People who have been abused often start to blame themselves for the event(s). Blaming oneself for this type of trauma leads to other unhelpful thoughts such as: "I am a terrible person"; "I don't deserve to have good things or good relationships happen to me"; "People are inherently bad" "I can't trust anyone" etc. These unhelpful thoughts can lead to depression, suicidal feelings/behaviors, and impair other relationships. It's important to figure out which of these types of thoughts the abused person is having and correct the thoughts before they become even more destructive.

2) In the case of someone who is experiencing PTSD; flashbacks and other anxiety symptoms, there are specific techniques that a therapist can use to help the person control these symptoms.

3) A person who has been abused may be behaving in ways that are not helpful and/or downright sabotaging of success. So, the therapist will also help the abused person identify unhelpful ways of being (whether that's not being assertive, communicating poorly in relationships, avoiding anxiety provoking situations, etc.) and come up with a new plan for behavior that is more likely to lead to success.

4) A good therapist is supposed to provide you with a sense of safety and security to talk through experiences that have happened to you. Sessions can be hard (it's not pleasant to think about or relieve bad things that happen)- but it's supposed to be a safe haven for working through your issues.

Several things must happen before therapy will work:

You must find a therapist who you trust and feel comfortable with. You need to be open and honest; the therapist cannot read your mind. Finally, you must commit to doing the work; a therapist cannot wave a magic wand fix things.

Hope this helps! Good luck to you.

"

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Sheryl,

I agree with Natalie. I can report to you, based on experience with patients, that when you find a therapist with whom you can feel comfortable and whom you can trust, you talk about the things that happened and in great detail. I can only tell you that the experience is greatly relieving. In addition, a good therapist will help you recover from you feelings of guilt, etc.

In my experience, even when you have a therapist you trust, it usually takes time before most people will begin bringing up the topic and talking about it. One does not just enter therapy and begin discussing such a sensitive issue all at once.

What do you think?

Allan

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In my experience, even when you have a therapist you trust, it usually takes time before most people will begin bringing up the topic and talking about it. One does not just enter therapy and begin discussing such a sensitive issue all at once.

What do you think?

Allan

Hi,

I do agree with you there i do see a counsellor and i find it really helpful talking to her and i know i can trust her because i have been going to see her for quite some time now, we have discussed the issue at hand but only a little i still find it very painful to talk about it.

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Hello there,

I had been abused repeatedly by my step-father and have had psychotherapy. The creep never raped me, but he had immense control over me and my thinking patterns. This severely affected all aspects of my life, including work, school, and my hobbies. I feel I am now able to recognise when his effect comes into play and I know how to counteract it.

One of the biggest benefits I found when going to psychotherapy was having a place for a "reality check". It's a safe place to say, "this is what I'm feeling" and for them to help you see how to accept what you are feeling and yet learn how you can still be in control of your next action.

I used to get bogged down in the experiences of the past. What I wanted was to look at the future and embrace it, taking steps to show myself I was strong and independent. But I kept letting myself dwell on the past - not looking at it and accepting it, but dwelling on it and worrying over it. There is such a difference!! A therapist can really help in situations like this - they have additional information that can help you regain control.

I had two types of psychotherapy. One, the first, was focused on talking through experiences, thoughts, and learning how my thinking (and therefore actions) had been affected by the abuse. Part of the discussions involved learning how to correct the damage in everyday life.

The second was more physical, based on the concept that the body postures both affect and are affected by internal thoughts and feelings. Part of the process here was moving the body into different postures and letting thoughts and emotions come out. This requires a very specific type of therapist, and for all I know, it's her own type of therapy. I can tell you that if you notice your body posture being crumpled and meek, you will feel crumpled and meek. Gradually changing your posture will help you become stronger. Your thinking has to change as well, but they go hand in hand.

Regarding what methods are used - it's up to you. For example, I would never go to a hypnotist because of what I have learned about the abuse by my step-dad. The difficulty with my thinking patterns is related to a mind-control type thing, and that is just way too close to hypnotism for me. However, if you are comfortable with it, I understand others have found it helpful.

In reality, you get to decide what methods of psychotherapy are okay for you. It's your mind. You can do what you want. If you go to one therapist and don't like them, find a different one. Personalities matter in something as simple as a job - how much more for therapy!! Find someone you feel safe with that will challenge you to grow, and stay with them. It really comes down to what you want. You are the final one to decide if it's right for you. Really.

Stay strong,

Chou-tonbo

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Hi Sheryl,

It is an awful thing but all too common that those who have been raped as children or teenagers blame themselves for what happened. In fact, adults who are raped often blame themselves. However, it is NOT TRUE. You did nothing wrong. Your brother and friends are like many rapists: blame the victim instead of their own sick behavior.

You are not dirty and you do not deserve to die. What you deserve is to feel angry at the rapists and not at your self.

Also, you are experiencing Post Traumatic Stress. Yes, people suffer that even years after the event. All of the symptoms you describe is Post Traumatic Stress.

I want to urge you to continue to write to us, here, and get support from others who have experienced rape, either as children or adults.

Also, I want to urge you to enter psychotherapy to help you with the suffering you experience with this.

Finally, I want to urge you to enter one of the many self help groups for people who have been raped and there are such groups around the nation.

Can you tell us more about your self?

Allan

Allen,

My life is ruled by flash backs & nightmares. For me the abuse was sexual and physical from my dad and a brother. I too take out the pain by harming myself.

Can you have post traumatic stress even when the people that hurt you are no longer in your life? My dad is dead rotting in hell hopefully, I have no idea where my brother is dead too for all I know he has always lived a reckless life.

It's awful that my dad is dead yet I find him most nights in my nightmares.

I am afraid to sleep because I sleep walk or claw my arms to shreds , I'm so ashamed of what I do. I have tried a sleeping pill ,I still slept walked but didn't know it till I found the signs the next morning.

Any thoughts you have on this would be wonderful, I'm more than will to stop this any way I can. What ever the cost might be.

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hi texas girl, i don't see one of the people that abused me as a little girl but my brother i do because when i go to see my mother he's there because he still lives with her it's still so hard to see him i don't talk to him other than to say hello, even when you don't have them in your life your still plagued with whaty they did to you you can have post traumatic stress years after the event of the abuse took place so i imagine that even thiough you don't see your abusers anymore that you could still have post traumaticn stress. i'm not sure though i hope your ok.

sheryl

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Texas Girl,

Yes, Sheryl is correct, PTSD, like flashbacks and nightmares last years after the terrible events first occurred.

Of course, there is psychotherapy and that is very important for the treatment of PTSD. In fact, one treatment that seems to help many people is EMDR. You could look for a psychologist or licensed clinical social worker who is certified in EMDR. Many people have found it helpful in relieving those types of symptoms.

Also, it is vitally important to get good sleep each night. The psychiatrist could prescribe one of many medications that could be used to induce sleep, temporarily, while you get help for your symptoms.

Allan

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Hello there,

I had been abused repeatedly by my step-father and have had psychotherapy. The creep never raped me, but he had immense control over me and my thinking patterns. This severely affected all aspects of my life, including work, school, and my hobbies. I feel I am now able to recognise when his effect comes into play and I know how to counteract it.

I used to get bogged down in the experiences of the past. What I wanted was to look at the future and embrace it, taking steps to show myself I was strong and independent. But I kept letting myself dwell on the past - not looking at it and accepting it, but dwelling on it and worrying over it. There is such a difference!! A therapist can really help in situations like this - they have additional information that can help you regain control.

I had two types of psychotherapy. One, the first, was focused on talking through experiences, thoughts, and learning how my thinking (and therefore actions) had been affected by the abuse. Part of the discussions involved learning how to correct the damage in everyday life.

Regarding what methods are used - it's up to you. For example, I would never go to a hypnotist because of what I have learned about the abuse by my step-dad. The difficulty with my thinking patterns is related to a mind-control type thing, and that is just way too close to hypnotism for me. However, if you are comfortable with it, I understand others have found it helpful.

Stay strong,

Chou-tonbo

Hi CHOU-TONBO

I'm sorry for all of your suffering what i went through it affected alot of aspects of my life too, i hope your okay? I wish i knew how to counteract the affects they have on my life, How long have you being going to a therapist? i've only been seeing mine for 6 months or so and i've found it has helped with some of my strong feelings towards my mother, i feel like i have left them behind but when it comes to the abuse i sufered at the hands of my brother and his best mate i find it still very painful.

I'm trying to get on with my life too i'm at college studying to eventually go to university to study medicine. Have you cut your step-father out of your life?

That type of pschotherapy sounds really interesting, how exactly did it help you? hypnosis sounds interesting do you know anyone who has experienced hypnosis?

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Hi CHOU-TONBO

I'm sorry for all of your suffering what i went through it affected alot of aspects of my life too, i hope your okay? I wish i knew how to counteract the affects they have on my life, How long have you being going to a therapist? i've only been seeing mine for 6 months or so and i've found it has helped with some of my strong feelings towards my mother, i feel like i have left them behind but when it comes to the abuse i sufered at the hands of my brother and his best mate i find it still very painful.

I'm trying to get on with my life too i'm at college studying to eventually go to university to study medicine. Have you cut your step-father out of your life?

That type of pschotherapy sounds really interesting, how exactly did it help you? hypnosis sounds interesting do you know anyone who has experienced hypnosis?

Hello there Sheryl,

I'm sorry for your suffering too. I think your situation is extremely tough, but I know you can make it through and make your life what you want. You're getting help, trying to make changes. That is so important.

I am doing very well in my life now. Most people would have no idea that I had been through this stuff. That said, I have to really think through my actions. Sometimes I initially want to respond in one way, but I know that I'm reacting to something in the past rather than what is really going on now. So I try to think through my motivations for actions now, and that has helped my life move forward tons.

I told a bit of my story here. I did cut my step-dad out of my life; that also means I cut my mom out of my life. Something I didn't go into much in the other post was the family relationship fiasco. I had been hanging on to my family relationships because I believed my mom was a victim too and I cared about my brothers. I thought she was being manipulated by my step-dad and wasn't sure how to get out of the situation. Then I was getting married. She met and liked my then fiance, wanted to help out with the wedding and all that type of thing. However, she was actually trying to undermine the wedding the entire time. I am so thankful the person officiating was wise and strong enough to see through their lies (he was my husband's mentor so he knew the whole situation). That started me on the path to see that my mom was choosing to live with a man she knew had molested her daughter. She knew he was unrepentant about it ("I'm sorry that you were hurt by my actions" is the apology I received - and that even puts the responsibility on me for being hurt!). It took me a few years, but I realised that she cared more for her husband who should be in prison than for her daughter who had been victimized. I realised she didn't care what reality was, she wanted to have someone beside her and if that meant she lost her daughter, so be it. That still hurts when I think about it.

In my story I mention I have two brothers. I do still talk on occasion with my older brother; he believes me, is aware of everything, and is trying to counter the effects of living in an abusive household. (He wasn't sexually abused, but the manipulation that occurred in the house affected him significantly.) I have not talked to my younger brother in quite some time. Every time I used to, he would talk about our parents like they were good people even though he knew my position and my reasons behind it. He was also affected by the manipulation, but he has not looked at it at all to my knowledge. The response he has given me when I've confronted him on this has been, in a nutshell, "I don't know who to believe. I wish you both could be right." His comments since then demonstrate that he believes I am lying or he wants me to pretend everything is fine. He believes my dad was simply 'educating' me. Thanks, but I didn't need that 'education'. My younger brother scares me; I am terrified that he will end up abusing children someday.

In response to your question on therapy: I have gone to a therapist at various points for the last 15-20 years. The therapy does help tons in processing all those emotions. As you can see above, I find the abuse itself painful still if I focus on it. It loses power as you go through therapy and grow. However, when I think about my 'dad' and what he did, how he has responded, I still get upset inside. I feel this way when I hear about any abuse though. I have scars, and I think I'll always have scars. What I have done is work around the scars, to do everything I can even though the scars are there. In some ways, what I have done is say "Okay, I had this horrible thing happen to me. That's very sad and upsetting. That does not have to make my life miserable. I get to choose what I am going to spend my energy on, and I am deciding to spend it on other, positive things."

Now, that does not mean I ignore the things going on inside me. In the same way that a physically disabled person has to moderate what they do based on what they can handle physically, I have to moderate what I do based on the scars I have. That's one of the things that posture therapy stuff does. It helps me figure out how to interact with the world while acknowledging the stuff going on inside me. I have been learning how to use my emotions as signposts to what is going on inside me. I can recognise the emotion but not act on it. I'm not sure if that makes sense - let me know.

Good luck on studying medicine. I love medicine too and read articles all the time on it. It's pretty fascinating, and your experiences can help you have an empathy and strength when working with people through tough times. What aspect of medicine are you studying?

Take care,

Chou-tonbo

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I told a bit of my story here. I did cut my step-dad out of my life; that also means I cut my mom out of my life. Something I didn't go into much in the other post was the family relationship fiasco. I had been hanging on to my family relationships because I believed my mom was a victim too and I cared about my brothers. I thought she was being manipulated by my step-dad and wasn't sure how to get out of the situation. Then I was getting married. She met and liked my then fiance, wanted to help out with the wedding and all that type of thing. However, she was actually trying to undermine the wedding the entire time. I am so thankful the person officiating was wise and strong enough to see through their lies (he was my husband's mentor so he knew the whole situation). That started me on the path to see that my mom was choosing to live with a man she knew had molested her daughter. She knew he was unrepentant about it ("I'm sorry that you were hurt by my actions" is the apology I received - and that even puts the responsibility on me for being hurt!). It took me a few years, but I realised that she cared more for her husband who should be in prison than for her daughter who had been victimized. I realised she didn't care what reality was, she wanted to have someone beside her and if that meant she lost her daughter, so be it. That still hurts when I think about it.

In my story I mention I have two brothers. I do still talk on occasion with my older brother; he believes me, is aware of everything, and is trying to counter the effects of living in an abusive household. (He wasn't sexually abused, but the manipulation that occurred in the house affected him significantly.) I have not talked to my younger brother in quite some time. Every time I used to, he would talk about our parents like they were good people even though he knew my position and my reasons behind it. He was also affected by the manipulation, but he has not looked at it at all to my knowledge. The response he has given me when I've confronted him on this has been, in a nutshell, "I don't know who to believe. I wish you both could be right." His comments since then demonstrate that he believes I am lying or he wants me to pretend everything is fine. He believes my dad was simply 'educating' me. Thanks, but I didn't need that 'education'. My younger brother scares me; I am terrified that he will end up abusing children someday.

In response to your question on therapy: I have gone to a therapist at various points for the last 15-20 years. The therapy does help tons in processing all those emotions. As you can see above, I find the abuse itself painful still if I focus on it. It loses power as you go through therapy and grow. However, when I think about my 'dad' and what he did, how he has responded, I still get upset inside. I feel this way when I hear about any abuse though. I have scars, and I think I'll always have scars. What I have done is work around the scars, to do everything I can even though the scars are there. In some ways, what I have done is say "Okay, I had this horrible thing happen to me. That's very sad and upsetting. That does not have to make my life miserable. I get to choose what I am going to spend my energy on, and I am deciding to spend it on other, positive things."

Now, that does not mean I ignore the things going on inside me. In the same way that a physically disabled person has to moderate what they do based on what they can handle physically, I have to moderate what I do based on the scars I have. That's one of the things that posture therapy stuff does. It helps me figure out how to interact with the world while acknowledging the stuff going on inside me. I have been learning how to use my emotions as signposts to what is going on inside me. I can recognise the emotion but not act on it. I'm not sure if that makes sense - let me know.

Good luck on studying medicine. I love medicine too and read articles all the time on it. It's pretty fascinating, and your experiences can help you have an empathy and strength when working with people through tough times. What aspect of medicine are you studying?

Take care,

Chou-tonbo

Hi chou-tonbo

how are you? i hope your okay? I'm sorry that you had to cut your mother out of your life, my mother never believed me either when she found out that my older brother has sexually abused and raped me i tried to tell her several times before it all came out in the open, it's awful that your mother didn't believe you and rather believed your step-father, how old is your younger brother? because the comment on your step-father educating you was just oplain wrong well i think it was anyway, it's awful that he didn't believe you either, there was only very few of my family that belived me my brother abused my cousin too so she believed me and her family did so i had a little support from them.

It still hurts me when i think that my mother believed my brother instead of me i blame her sometimes too, because everytime she went out of the door without me and left me in the house with that monster, it was like she was allowing me to be abused and with each and everytime a part of me died.

I have physical scars because as a way of coping i started to self-harm to cope with all the feelings that i had, but then there's the emotional scars too which sometimes are hard to ignore. I see my brother and my mother every week and it's so painful to see my brother, but i can't denie my mother the right to see her granddaughter.

I'm going to study the bachelor of medicine and the bachelor of surgery degree which is a master's degree at the end of it and then i plan on doing a master's degree in psychiatry, i'd love to be a child psychiatrist.

What do you do for a living?

take care

sheryl.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi guys

I havent posted for a while, i hope everyone's doing okay? I'm doing okay just sort of struggling from days to days most of the time, i'm just trying to focus my attention on my studies so that i don't get too many flashbacks that doesn't always work but i keep trying to block it out, i have good fays and bad days i've lost count how many times i haven't slpet in the last two weeks

take care everyone hope to hear from you soon,

sheryl.

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My name is Kris and I just registered to this site. I was molested as a boy from age 6 to 9 by a neighbor and his wife. He told me similar things as your brother told you. I am 35 now and have never dealt with the pain it caused me in the right way. For years I would fight all the time and imagine his face on the other person. I felt that the situation made me gay so I abused sex to prove I wasn't gay. I hurt many people along the way emotionally and physically. My wife knows some of it. When we got married she was my relief then when we had children alot of my issues came back, though I was never violent physically with I became detached and withdrawn from her. I slowly began to emotionally leave her without realizing it then. I now have become so far detatched that I have drove her to a point she is not sure can come back from. I lied to her about money and things I had bought. I bought those things to fill an emptiness in me, and only cared about my feelings. For two years I didn't play with my children all that much my wife would always say you're here but you're not here. Right now I still get so angry and mad at me and the man that molested me. Now I am trying to deal with my anger and self hatred so I can try to save my marriage. PLEASE talk to your husband and let him know your feelings. It may be hard to do but after what you went through and feelings you must have towards men you still married him and that shows me alot of TRUST you have for him. Believe me when I say that when you lose trust in a relationship it makes it very difficult to return. Don't become detached from your family let them in so they can understand and help you. With help from people you LOVE and TRUST you can begin a new life that includes loving yourself. I myself am now trying to do that aswell.

Don't give up,

Kris

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Hello there Sheryl,

Wow, time has really flown. I’m sorry I didn’t reply earlier. I had started a reply but never posted it :). Between my “omg I shared tons about myself – must hide now” and my boss changing my job a bit (for the better), I lost a month. Most of this post in reply to your earlier post.

I am doing well in life now. I would have preferred a different outcome of the discussions with my mom, but she did make her choice. I would have been glad to have her along in my life, but not if she denied my life and my struggles/accomplishments. Therefore, we couldn't travel together. I regret the decision she made, but I do not regret the decision I made.

My brothers are both 2 1/2 years on either side of me. My older brother agrees with us: that type of 'education' is wrong. My younger brother just doesn't get it (unless he's gotten it since and just hasn't tried contacting me). Families tend to have dysfunction in more areas than just one. Or perhaps the lack of understanding of boundaries and respect just spills over into several - I'm not sure how it all works. At any rate, once a family is messed up in one area, it seems it becomes messed up in others and soon there is little support for correcting/healing any wrongs.

It's so sad that your mother was allowing you to be abused! That was indeed what she did when she left you with your brother like that. My heart breaks thinking of you watching her leave - the severity of your situation could have been prevented. My blood starts boiling when I think about it. You mention your concern with denying your mum the ability to see her granddaughter. My older brother does still have contact with my parents because of my nephews and niece, though my brother and his wife are very careful and watch everything closely. I personally think this is a bad idea, and that it would be better to say, "Children, we won't be able to visit with Grandma and Grandpa anymore. This might not make sense now, but this is a decision we are making." It's not worth the risk from my perspective. That said, I have heard of one family who did stay in contact with an abusive grandparent without any abuse occurring to the grandchild. The father went to the grandparent who had abused previously and, after the birth of the little girl, said: "If you touch her, I will find you." They never had a problem with him, but that is not a risk I would ever take. I also don't think my brother would say something like that other father did. Something I was wondering about for your situation – why not simply let your mum know that when she wants to see her granddaughter, she comes to your place without your brothers? You aren’t denying her anything other than putting you in a bad situation again. You can make at least some of the rules for your house and your life. I know this is much simpler to type than to put in place, but you do have other options.

Anyway, on to your current life and plans. Wow, what a series of degrees you'll have! I'm a bit curious - why the masters in surgery before the psychiatry degree? A child psychiatrist is a very wonderful profession imo. Children also need understanding people to help them through some of the horrible things humans do to each other or through events that occur to them.

As for what I do, I work in an employment agency, interviewing people and placing them with clients who need employees. It's a very interesting job, and I love it. It’s a job that I wanted to do when I was getting my bachelor’s and was working temp, though I never thought about going into HR or tried to get the job as such. I was simply in the right place at the right time and my skills were needed. I'm glad, as I have grown quite a bit in the position.

Anyway, I better actually post this before I go to bed!

Take care,

Chou-Tonbo

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Hello again Sheryl,

I just reread your recent post and was wondering - are you still seeing someone for therapy? It would be good to mention how you're not sleeping well. I'm not big on meds, but they would know other ideas about how to get to sleep or get back to sleep. I have a friend who imagines a safe, quiet place and basically goes to sleep there. It's all mental, but it helps her sleep anyway. Maybe your therapist knows of other things like that.

Also, something you might do with the flashbacks - assuming your therapist thinks it's a good idea!!! - is write down the info that comes to you (not trying to get more info, just note down what your brain is trying to get out). I think it was in a semi-recent Scientific American Mind magazine that I read about how writing down bad memories lessens their power, but writing down good memories makes them less pleasant. And thinking about bad memories makes them worse, while thinking about good memories makes them better. I found it very interesting, and it might be helpful here. As soon as I find the article, I will post the name here. It would be something to do only after talking about it with your therapist, as they know your situation!

Do take care, and keep moving forward.

Goodnight,

Chou-Tonbo

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My name is Kris and I just registered to this site. I was molested as a boy from age 6 to 9 by a neighbor and his wife. He told me similar things as your brother told you. I am 35 now and have never dealt with the pain it caused me in the right way. For years I would fight all the time and imagine his face on the other person. I felt that the situation made me gay so I abused sex to prove I wasn't gay. I hurt many people along the way emotionally and physically. My wife knows some of it. When we got married she was my relief then when we had children alot of my issues came back, though I was never violent physically with I became detached and withdrawn from her. I slowly began to emotionally leave her without realizing it then. I now have become so far detatched that I have drove her to a point she is not sure can come back from. I lied to her about money and things I had bought. I bought those things to fill an emptiness in me, and only cared about my feelings. For two years I didn't play with my children all that much my wife would always say you're here but you're not here. Right now I still get so angry and mad at me and the man that molested me. Now I am trying to deal with my anger and self hatred so I can try to save my marriage. PLEASE talk to your husband and let him know your feelings. It may be hard to do but after what you went through and feelings you must have towards men you still married him and that shows me alot of TRUST you have for him. Believe me when I say that when you lose trust in a relationship it makes it very difficult to return. Don't become detached from your family let them in so they can understand and help you. With help from people you LOVE and TRUST you can begin a new life that includes loving yourself. I myself am now trying to do that aswell.

Don't give up,

Kris

Hi Kris-

Welcome to the group. Based on your very painful experience and what you wrote, it sounds like you have done some major work in starting the road to healing. Are you working on your issues alone, or in conjunction with a therapist? If you are trying to accomplish all of this by yourself, that's a pretty major job. I would recommend that you consider talking to an objective third party (a mental health professional) in order to help sort out all of your feelings, help boost your self-worth, and most importantly, come to terms with the idea that the abuse clearly WASN't YOUR FAULT.

I also wonder if you are able to meet with a therapist with your wife. It is not at all surprising that your history of abuse has impacted your marital relationship. It may be very hard for her to understand how these issues have affected your relationship, as well as how this plays out in terms of yor interactions with your children. It may also help her to get some concrete suggestions about what to expect as you work thru these issues, and how she can help support you.

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I am seeing someone with my wife, but only because of my lies and deciet to her. We are working on our marital issues together but not so much on my past incidents. how can you be compassionate and empathetic to people when you don't know how to be that way or since if never been that way. I feel like that is alot of the problem that we have. Also any ideas how to be more comfortable with expressing my feelings so they don't look made up or insincere?

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Hello Kris,

Welcome to the community. I'm glad you are here and talking about what has gone on in your past and how it has affected you and your life. I personally find it helpful to have a place to talk.

Talking to a therapist is even more helpful, but it is important that they know what is going on inside of you. As Natalie pointed out, dealing with this stuff is pretty major. The more information that your therapist has, the better they are able to help. Your past experiences have directly affected your actions with your wife and children.

You had asked about being compassionate and empathetic to folks when you're not sure what that is like. I had to learn the same thing about respect. Something I did was to research what the word meant, what actions displayed respect, and how respect is more than one way of interacting (and what some of those were). Perhaps reading about compassion and empathy, observing them "in action", and taking part in similar activities would help you gain more of those two qualities.

Your desire to express feelings without being insincere is something that is an internal challenge. Say something only if you mean it. Say it simply. I personally had to look at my motivation for communicating what I was feeling. I would manipulate by "being honest". I now ask myself "Why are you wanting to mention this?" and "What result are you wanting?". Eventually, people will start accepting what you are saying.

Basically, start acting and communicating like you want to, making the choices honestly inside you. It may take awhile for people to accept that you've changed, but keep going. People have that "sixth sense" about what people say and if they are lying or trying to manipulate. Just be honest and remember that you are responsible for you.

Your wife has to make her decisions, though I hope she supports you as you recover from the horrible things that happened to you. Like Natalie said, you are already growing as demonstrated by the fact that you are in therapy. Hopefully your wife can see your growth too.

Good luck,

Chou-Tonbo

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  • 1 month later...

. Something I was wondering about for your situation – why not simply let your mum know that when she wants to see her granddaughter, she comes to your place without your brothers? You aren’t denying her anything other than putting you in a bad situation again. You can make at least some of the rules for your house and your life. I know this is much simpler to type than to put in place, but you do have other options.

Anyway, on to your current life and plans. Wow, what a series of degrees you'll have! I'm a bit curious - why the masters in surgery before the psychiatry degree? A child psychiatrist is a very wonderful profession imo. Children also need understanding people to help them through some of the horrible things humans do to each other or through events that occur to them.

As for what I do, I work in an employment agency, interviewing people and placing them with clients who need employees. It's a very interesting job, and I love it. It’s a job that I wanted to do when I was getting my bachelor’s and was working temp, though I never thought about going into HR or tried to get the job as such. I was simply in the right place at the right time and my skills were needed. I'm glad, as I have grown quite a bit in the position.

Anyway, I better actually post this before I go to bed!

Take care,

Chou-Tonbo

Hi Chou-Tonbo,

I'm sorry i haven't replied in a while but my computer was broken we've just brought a new one, anyway how are you doing? itwould be really hard for me to tell my mother that in order for her to see her granddaughter she wou;d have to come to my house it would be very difficult for her to get to my house as the buses are really expensive.

the reason theat i'm doing the bachelor in medicine and the bachelor in surgery because it is a master's degree and it's only an extra year also you have to be a qualified doctor before you can do psychiatry i suppose that's the case because you have to prescibe medication, i want to be a child psychiatry because i want to help the children were as i wasn't helped when i needed to be helped, that's my ambition in life to help children.

well congratulations to you for your new job i'm so gald that your enjoying it, as for me i have finished my return to study course and passed it all, now i have a place to do the access to science course for the a levels that i will need. what's new with you?

take care, sheryl.

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Hello Sheryl,

No worries; I've been a tad busy myself and today is the first day I've been by in some time. I'm glad you're doing well.

Overall, life is going well, just busy! My family and I are considering buying our own place since the landlord raised the rent (again), making it so we're basically paying a mortgage anyway. We have so many things to consider right now. It's been a bit stressful, but I am trying (and mostly succeeding) to keep everything in perspective.

The logic on the degrees makes sense. I am always impressed with people who can make it through medical studies. I wanted to, but it was just too daunting for me. I have a bachelor's degree and that's served me well for my goals.

Yeah, my suggestion isn't so great when you look at the logistics of your situation. You might find something else that will work for you though. Just because we are 'used' to doing something a certain way doesn't require it to be done that way. Meanwhile, be sure to do some great self-talk before visiting!

Talk to you later,

Chou-Tonbo

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