Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

anonymous (content note for child rape)

I dont really know why Im being drawn to write this, Ive only shared this once, but maybe it will help some other ladies along their road towards healing. I am a 42 year old woman, married with 3 teenage girls. I struggled intense emotional abuse at the hands of my mom throughout my childhood, only identifying it as "not normal behavior" as I entered college. As I grappled to deal with that during therapy, I started dreaming, which started as disjointed bits of nightmares, which linked vague memories from childhood experiences on my maternal grandfathers farm. Eventually I confided in the therapist who was walking me through the healing work with my mom. My confusion came as I had

no formal memories of my time on the farm. Over the last few years, I have come to know and eventually accept that I was sexually abused by my grandfather and my two uncles (my moms brothers). Nightmares, flashbacks, anxiety attacks and hospitalization for sleep deprivation, was 2014/2015 for me. At the end of 2015, I was not coping, suicidal and twice attempted to take my life, just to make the horror go away. The most intense fear being, am I making this all up in my head? Am I sick? Nobody will believe me!!!! I didn't believe myself. My dreams told another story though, and body memories, excessive fears and reactions to seemingly normal situations through my life has helped me realize that it is real, and it did happen and I can heal. my grandfather raped me vaginally, anally, used various objects, mostly his beer bottle to penetrate me, raped my my older boy cousin and got us to do various obscene acts for him. took photos, made me dress up and threatened me that if I told anyone, he would kill my younger sister (who thankfully escaped his clutches) My cousin was not so lucky and succumbed to alcohol abuse recently. in late 2015, I underwent sessions ECT treatment to help pull me out of my deep depression, and have been attending therapy regularly. my immediate family has been supportive, but my secret is still inside, and I dont feel the need to ever discuss the details of it with my husband or my children. My hope is that someone out there will read this and know that there is hope for healing. I still have a long road to walk, but there is hope, and where there is hope, there is a will to keep fighting. I will always be scarred by my experiences, it affects every area of my life, from sex with my husband to parenting my children, to dealing with my friends. I carry a deep and ugly secret, which is shameful and if I allow it, keeps me feeling dirty, used and unloveable. But I know that I am not those things. Well today I know those things, maybe tomorrow I will struggle to know those things again, and battle with the emotions of shame and disgust again. What I do know, is that there is hope out there for all of us. you can believe your story and you can heal.


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3 thoughts on “anonymous (content note for child rape)

  • lynda says:

    your amazingly brave for telling your story so thank you i to know what it feels to be abused as a child then in my marriage. i thank you for sharing as we both try to navigate the things we both been through our life we have a right to be heard believe and we can be healed. Like yourself its hard one step forward and many moves backwards. i just needed your words right now this week has been difficult with memories but i know like you we can slowly heal. Never forget that what you when through is never your fault but the perpetrators. Slowly we can heal our mind body and soul through the emotional pain that effects us everyday. Connect to our emotions even the most painful ones in the only way can heal i connect to my anger emotion the most so i know how you feel when depression hits because it can be hard to connect and its painful. I send you hugs in solidarity in our path towards healing take care kind regards Lynda

  • Mehreen says:

    Thank you for sharing. It’s not easy to do. Sorry you went through that. I experienced sexual abuse from my grandfather and an ex and even though they were in the wrong, there was the self blame. It’s unfair that we get stuck dealing with the stigma, blame and they get away with it. I know now that it is not our fault and that we were wronged.Took me years, but I’m finally healing, able to trust again and find joy in the little things in life.

  • Sunsunshineturtle says:

    I,too, have suffered at the hands of family members and others. I had repressed those memories, did not want to believe them when they started, and struggle as they come. My family does not know. I am glad that you’re foing well. Stay strong.