Posted 8/12/2006 5:56 AM (GMT -6)

Stronglady, I want you to know that I was not at all offended or put-off by your post.  Sometimes it is good to have a post that really makes you think and reflect on your feelings and thoughts.  Even though it strains my brain now-a-days... tongue



Posted 8/12/2006 6:12 AM (GMT -6)
Im sorry Ive left it so long to post in here.  I have thought about this thread a lot and was actually nervous about what to post.
I'm afraid of a lot of things. I don't know whether Im posting the right things in here but I will tell you all what Im afraid of.
From the ages of 9-11 I was abused and raped by my mums boyfriend and my mum knew about it.  No-one knew about this until 2 months ago.  Since then I have been seeing a psychologist to talk about it all.  I am frightened to open up and I am frightened to tell her everything as I am ashamed and disgusted with it all.
A lot of people want me to go to the police about this but I am scared to death that if I do he will come after me.  This is the only time in my life I have ever felt safe and I dont think he knows where I am. If I go to the police, he will know where I am and I am scared he will find me and hurt me.  My mum doesnt know where I am either and Im equally scared of her.
I have never posted something as detailed as this as I feel I am showing my weak side.  I hate to admit I am afraid but I am.  Sometimes when I think of all this I feel like a scared little girl again.
I feel like I need to be stong all the time and deep down Im not.
I hope you all dont think of me as weak and I hope its ok to post this in this thread but in answer to the question about what im afraid of.....this is it.
Im afraid I ll always be this weak, Im afraid I ll never get over the past and just be able to get on with things and Im afraid that one day he'll find me and my life will be over.
Ive never told anyone how afraid of this I am.  I always put on a brave face and a smile.  I always feel I have to. 
Everyone one I work with thinks I am the happiest, fun  and outgoing person they know.  I have to put on this front at work as I am a nurse and I cannot put my own problems first.  Its is easy to hide behind this front I put on.
I always think to myself that I shouldnt feel like this as there are people much worse off than me and i shoould feel lucky for what I have in life.  I have worked so hard to get where I am today so whay cant I get past this.
Im so sorry for the long post.  I dont think Ive ever just posted about myself like this - i have definatley shown you all my weak side.
Thanks for listening x
Victoria x
cherish all your happy moments....they make a fine cushion for old age
dx: IBS 2002, Solitary Rectal Ulcer Syndrome 2004, Depression 2004, Anxiety 2005
meds: lexapro 10mg, prednisilone 10mg, mebeverine 20mg

Posted 8/12/2006 6:33 AM (GMT -6)
Victoria, I don't think you're weak at all: I think what you just wrote was massively brave in itself. And you must never feel ashamed of what was done to you -- disgusted is fine as long as you are disgusted with *him* and *your mum* for not acting like decent human beings. I'm so pleased you are seeing a psychologist to help you with this: as you open up and talk about it and you find that nobody but you is judging you for what was done, hopefully this will help you to be kinder to yourself.

On the police question... I never reported the guy who raped me because I was afraid of acknowledging it properly and afraid it would destroy my parents (he was also very screwed up and on drugs and had a bizarre obsession with me and part of me actually felt *sorry* for him that he'd sunk so low). I don't know if I regret not doing so: I can't think about that because it was too long ago now and there's nothing I could do now anyway. But what happened to you *involved* a parent and that is *appalling*. I'm sure you know that they deserve to be found out and punished for this, but I can feel your fear of being found and hurt by this man. But he is scaring you and hurting you *now*. You can be protected from him by the police. Is there a rape/abuse line local to you that you can call and ask for information on police procedures for dealing with this kind of thing in your area -- so that you know what you'd be dealing with if you do report this without actually committing to doing so until if or when you're ready?

Bug hugs Victoria. Take care.

Rosie x
People are not like fish: they do not work better battered.

Posted 8/12/2006 10:37 AM (GMT -6)

Hi Vic, I agree that you are incredibly brave and are NOT a weak person.  I cannot imagine a mother knowing about something like that happening and not doing something to prevent it or protect their child.

 I understand your fear of "him" finding you as we left Kansas City as soon as we could so my stepfather couldn’t find us.  My mother was very paranoid that he would make good on his threats and find us and harm us.  For me this was a real fear also for many years but subsided after being in one place for a long period of time and knowing that I would never let him hurt me again even if he did come here.


Your a strong person Victoria, and despite the horrors that were done to you and the neglect of your mother you have made a life for yourself.  You have a career to be proud of which not very many people can mind you and a wonderful supportive relationship with a great guy.  Your not that little girl anymore...yes, she is still in there and you (and me too) need to learn how to heal the damage that has been done so you can live in peace with yourself.  Your doing that by going to counseling and taking care of your mental health with medication...are you still doing yoga?  Helps with anxiety you know  :-) But I think once you feel more at peace with yourself and have dealt with these issues some more in therapy you may be ready to face them legally, if that is the road you want to take. 





Posted 8/12/2006 12:47 PM (GMT -6)
Hi, I was the "invisible child" or the lamb in the 12 family scheme of things. My father was an alcoholic, my mom became mentally ill. After that my sister and I became outcasts. She became the black sheep. I was "wierd" and a "wierdo". I won a scholarship to Catholic high school but my mother was not impressed and wanted me to leave school at 16 so I could get out of the house and stop being a burden. 

I come from a violent mess. My mother was shunned because she was mentally ill. I feel strange because I am very tall and am slightly crippled too. Thank the good graces I met my husband who treated me like a queen.

My family only said negative things and treated me like a work drudge. I see the world out there through those glasses and it is very difficult to change.

As the french philsophy Jean Paul Satre said "Hell is other people." I don't like to be around those in authority, ie doctors, police, etc. The only exception is teachers. My school life was paradise compared to being at home. I have a poem entitled Every Cat Has Nine Lives which I might share someday soon.
Peace...may the force be with us all.

Post Edited (Joan M) : 8/12/2006 11:52:09 AM (GMT-6)

Posted 8/12/2006 9:34 PM (GMT -6)
Victoria said...
Im sorry Ive left it so long to post in here.  I have thought about this thread a lot and was actually nervous about what to post.
I'm afraid of a lot of things. I don't know whether Im posting the right things in here but I will tell you all what Im afraid of.
From the ages of 9-11 I was abused and raped by my mums boyfriend and my mum knew about it.  No-one knew about this until 2 months ago.  Since then I have been seeing a psychologist to talk about it all.  I am frightened to open up and I am frightened to tell her everything as I am ashamed and disgusted with it all.
A lot of people want me to go to the police about this but I am scared to death that if I do he will come after me.  ....
Victoria,  I know that you have heard this again and again but you have nothing to be ashamed of.  Your fear of discovery is real, acknowledge it,  you're allowed to be afraid.  For much of my life I have examined the notion of courage.  When I first had a problem with depression, it was undiagnosed and even after seeing an wonderful doctor it went undiagnosed (he told me this was all a reaction to stress).  It took me 8 years to get better during which I had 2 children, built a house, moved several times and created a place for myself in the world.  During that time there wasn't one single day that depression didn't make me feel weak.  It wasn't until several months after I was no longer symptomatic with depression that I realized how much strength and courage it took to make it through those 8 years. 
In our culture there are icons that we are supposed to look up to; sports figures, celebrities, people in authority.  I have come to realize that while these people may be good people, they are not role models or heros.  A role model is someone that everyone can aspire to immitate or be inspired by.  Not everyone is capable of playing basketball like Michael Jordan or create a stunning performance like so many movie stars that we see today.  Heros and role models are the everyday people in our communities that all too often go unnoticed, unsung and uncelebrated.  They are the people that quietly go about their lives no matter what their challenges are.  They are the people in our community that are trying to make a difference and make the world a better place. 
It takes real courage to be one of those people. Courage is not only the act of doing something brave such as running into the burning building to save someone.  It is also knowing what your fears are, being aware of how insurmountable they feel and looking them in the face and doing what we have to do anyway.  Everyone of us that comes here trying to make sense out of the challenges that we have been given is here with real courage. 
I believe that it is a personal decision to prosecute someone who has raped or abused you.  You are the only ones that can make the decision to go to the police or not.  I just want to say to anyone that has been attacked that there are crimes that have no statute of limitations.  Don't assume that it is too late unless you have researched this carefully.  There are many stories of adults who were raped or abused as children successfully prosecuting their attackers.
Y'all are my heros, everyday, one foot in front of the other with courage leading the way.
Posted 8/13/2006 5:26 AM (GMT -6)
Thankyou Els, Rosie and StrongLady - You made me feel like a stronger person and not a weak young girl
Thankyou xx
Victoria x
cherish all your happy moments....they make a fine cushion for old age
dx: IBS 2002, Solitary Rectal Ulcer Syndrome 2004, Depression 2004, Anxiety 2005
meds: lexapro 10mg, prednisilone 10mg, mebeverine 20mg

Posted 8/13/2006 5:48 AM (GMT -6)
Anytime Vic...that is what we are here for hun...hugs :-)



Posted 8/13/2006 6:02 AM (GMT -6)

Prosecuting for sex crimes (child or adult) does have a statute of limitations on them if you reside in the United States.  There is a bill before Congress now to change this and to make it so there is no limitation on reporting these types of crimes and being able to prosecute the people who commit them.

I cant speak for the UK as I am not familiar with the laws there…they may not have a statute of limitations on these type of crimes.



Posted 8/13/2006 6:16 AM (GMT -6)

Dear Rosie (and all of you in this thread)

What wonderfully brave and valorous women we have here -  reading all the posts makes me realise how much stronger we actually are to be able to go beyond all the fears which threaten to paralyze us each day - some real and some the tricks of our minds but all as challenging and threatening just the same. I think the fact that we are able to thrive and Rosie in your case take care of the needs of others despite these makes this group of people even more incredible and strong in my book. I have no explanation for why things are more challenging for some people like us and it sometimes drives me crazy wanting to hear from somebody up there - why me why me why me - it is like a litany in my brain sometimes !

After some therapy - both with my therapist and some spiritual learning - I have also been trying to face my fears a little more rationally - but alas so far I still keep slipping back into old negative thoughts - they have been with me for so long it is really difficult to not indulge in them. But I refuse to lose hope for the future and will persist.

Rosie - I am in the healthcare profession too and have realised that taking care of other people can sometimes be a challenging but also satisfying experience. How do you think your profession has affected you as a person ?

Posted 8/13/2006 7:30 AM (GMT -6)
Hi Susan,

Thanks so much for your kind words. You give me too much credit, though -- I'm not in healthcare, so I don't have anything like the things you have to cope with day to day. -- I really admire you for that. I suppose though, in many respects, my profession does involve caring: I lecture at a university, and one of my roles is as second year tutor, which is mainly a pastoral role and I have a lot of students come to me with problems (ranging from computers crashing and losing an essay to depression following abuse). My main role is to sit and listen and advise in terms of getting professional help and immediate strategies for helping them deal with the work load -- but I've been known to push the strict limits of my job at times because it's so hard not to try to do more at these times. Mostly helping is a positive experience. -- There was one girl who came to me just as my own relationship was falling apart due to my ex/partner's manic depression, and she was coping with someting very similar: it was odd to hear myself give her advice that I myself needed but hadn't been able to see until it came to me as someone else's problem. And it helped me. Sometimes it can become rather a lot though. -- I know that more students come to me than anyone else in my department because they see me as someone who will understand and not judge. -- That's alovely thing to know, but there are some days when I spend all day helping others and feel like I've got nothing left for me at the end of it. On balance I think the good outweighs the bad, though: I can't change the way I am, and it's good to know that my past problems make it easier for me to understand and/or help people fighting with their own demons.

My ex/partner (sorry, still no idea what to call him: some days it seems like we're back on track, others he's in "running" mode) works in the healthcare profession -- ambulance service. He's very good at treating work as work and not getting emotionally involved -- sometimes *too* good I think. He deals with the physical side more than the mental, though he can be surprisingly insightful at times and does seem to judge needs quite well. But he doesn't do softly softly with people much -- tells them the medical stuff that's making them react as they are and is very logical. He has this need to "fix" things, but in a more practical way than me. When he falls under depression it's crippling for him, because he won't give himself an emotional break I think.

Thank you again Susan for raising the carer issue. Although I'm not as directly involved with this as you are, I do understand you thoughts on this a lot -- from my work and from trying to help my ex/partner. I'm sure there are many others who have similar experiences and could offer their insights too.

Best to all,
Rosie x
People are not like fish: they do not work better battered.

Posted 8/13/2006 4:42 PM (GMT -6)
Sorry Rosie - I did mean to talk about how ones career affects ones condition and I think it is Victoria who is a nurse as she mentioned in her last post.

But yes I think this question affects everyone - do you think your career helps or hinders your condition ? I find it frightenening to think of not being able to work - in fact to some extent I wonder how healthy it is to be so attached to my career - if, for some reason, I could not work tomorrow - I would feel even more emotionally adrift than I am today and that thought gives me the shivers sometimes.

But on the positive side, I know that taking care of other people has given me a better perspective of my own problems and has definitely helped me. When I went through my divorce, I refused to take even a days break because it felt like when I was home alone with my thoughts - my depression got worse. Working was my anchor and helped deal with some of the worst times in my life.
Posted 8/14/2006 11:19 AM (GMT -6)
Do you ever get the feeling that we are twins of different mothers?

Ate, you are singing my song, LOL. My hubby and I were just having this conversation. We went to a family thing this weekend and there were lots of people that my parents know but kids were meeting for the first time. When my mom introduces us kids it goes like this (beaming with pride) This is my SON -------(might as well spell it sun), This is MY OLDEST DAUGHTER --------(and the only one I have a relationship with because she has no life of her own so I get to have her take care of me), this is my youngest daughter THE VETERANARIAN, ---------and this is my middle daughter ah,ah,ah, ---------(that would be me). My parents as you can see have 4 kids, 3 girls and 1 son, I am the third kid right in a row and there are 10 years between me and my younger sister. My mother never wanted girls, cosmic karma that she ended up with three but what did we do to deserve that? LOL The two older girls suffered heavily from the cherished first male child syndrome. I was the first "accident" which my mother informed me in a conversation where she was saying that she didn't like girls in "the aggregate". Apparently I was in "the aggregate" and she didn't like me. She meant going through puberty but she was so repressed she couldn't even say the word. What I feel about this is a great deal of sadness and occassional hurt, like this weekend. Thank goodness it has never made me jealous of my siblings. Somehow I was always able to see that they suffered from this in their own way as much as I did at the time. I think my brother was almost cherished to death and my older sister, well that is too long a story. My younger sister faired a little bit better because she was more like an only child and my mom had learned a thing or two between me and her. I think that she must have felt desserted as a child because we all went off to college and left her in that house alone. Fortunately she was into riding and had a horse which kept her busy and away from the house often. Man, this sounds like a horrible place to grow up. I think of my childhood, which was actually pretty happy, and my childhood with Mom which was a slippery bubble inside of my childhood. As I have said before I was a ghost which meant that I quietly slipped away, never got into any trouble.

You are right about the fear taking over like a cancer. It is the wolf that we all keep at bay to get better. I am wondering though if there is a difference between the fear that keeps us in one place and actually being in a situation that seems insurmountable?
Posted 8/15/2006 10:51 AM (GMT -6)
After my last post I just had to share this.

My mom has had many heart attacks in the middle of the night and is rightfully concerned about staying alone when my dad has to be out of town. My sister and I take turns staying with her as I did last weekend. Well, I left my shoes at Mom's house (hey, she left her bowls at my house). Anyway, hubby and I went over to pick up shoes and drop off bowls. We called ahead. When we got there we were met at the door by my mom with my shoes in hand. Mom said they were about to eat dinner and the shoes were shoved at me through the door bowls exchanged and well, good-bye. Husband commented on how rude it was, I pretty much just considered the source although it did seem especially rude.

Last night my mom called to APOLOGIZE. The words "I'm sorry" have never EVER come out of my mother's mouth. All of a sudden the univerise is tilting on its axis and the planets are out of alignment. Sputter, sputter, "thanks, Mom." (imagine Bambi in the headlights) She really meant it too. There is a Paul Newman movie (can't remember the name) where his family are loggers and his character is especially nasty. His life philosophy is "Never give a G-dam inch". I have pretty much always figured my mom lived by that. Wow.

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