Thursday, March 12, 2009

Broken

Posted By Anonymous

**A warning before you continue reading. This might get graphic, it might not make sense, it might go from one thought to the next, and it’s not well written, but I’ve got to get this out.**

I’m twenty-one and I have a secret that I’ve kept my entire life. I just recently told my therapist this secret (more like she flat out asked me saying that she just had a hunch). You see, I hate my father. I hate him with all that I am. It’s not your typical type of hate, but I am filled with a hatred that goes through every part of my body and soul. It is this secret that I keep, that keeps this hatred strong. My mother divorced him when I was around five because he came home so drunk one night that he hit her instead of coming for me.

I was sexually abused. How I hate typing those words. But they have been in my mind forever, swirling around, hiding at times, but it’s always there. Since freaking out and tearfully saying yes to my therapist, it’s been on my mind constantly. I’m constantly terrified. I can’t sleep, I either don’t eat or eat too much, I can’t take showers unless I’m wearing a bathing suit, and I sleep in jeans, sweatshirts, and sneakers. I have panic attacks throughout the day and I can never relax.

I can’t stand people to touch me. I don’t like people getting close to me. Even family members that touch me, cause me to coil in fear. The only people that have ever touched me and don’t make me feel sick are children. They seem to be the only innocent things that exist. I can’t explain to my mom that when she touches me on the shoulder why I jerk away. She won’t understand. As it is now, she yells at me for being inconsiderate of her feelings when I ask her to please don’t touch me. She doesn’t give me a chance to say why, instead she reminds me of how selfish I’m being. How I must hate her because I don’t want her to touch me. That’s the same thing he used to tell me.

Almost every night he would come into my room, smelling of alcohol and cheap cologne. That smell still makes me sick to this day. I can’t remember the first time, and I don’t remember every time. For that I’m thankful. He would wait till the early hours of the morning and sit on the edge of my bed. It started off with only his hands roaming over my body, then it changed. Apparently that wasn’t enough for him and he started having sex with me. I went away in my head, and that’s always worked for me until now. Since admitting my secret, I haven’t been able to just go away in my mind. Hours aren’t passing as quickly and that scares me because it means that the memories and feelings are always there.

I feel like it’s my fault. I didn’t do enough to stop it- I blame myself. I didn’t tell anyone, so does that mean that I wanted it? Did I subconsciously not tell anyone so it would continue? Did I want it? Did I ask for it? Is it my fault for tempting him? I not only hate him, I hate myself. I hate myself for letting it happen, I hate myself for keeping a secret, I hate myself for telling my secret.

I hate that because I am his only child, I have to take care of him. He’s sick. He has heart problems, lung problems, he still drinks and smokes, and he’s in and out of hospitals. I’m next of kin and power of attorney. Everyone expects me to be the adult and take care of him. I also am next of kind and power of attorney for him mother and brother (both who are in nursing homes- Parkinson’s and stroke respectively). I hate having to see him, and each time I spend days trying to feel ok again. I never feel safe. I never feel relaxed, and rarely do I feel ok.

I don’t want people to feel sorry for me, but I want to be a kid. I never got to be a kid. From the time I was little, I was a part of his adult fantasy, and now I go to school full time, I work two jobs, and I take care of him, my grandmother, and my uncle. I’m tired of it all. I’m tired of having to be the perfect daughter. But most of all, I’m tired of hating myself.

I’m tired of this secret, but I fear that if I say anything about it now, then no one will believe me. After all, I’ve kept it this long. I’m scared and really all I want is someone safe to hold me and tell me it’s ok. I want someone to tell me that it’s ok to feel like this, that it’s ok to be scared, but also that I will be ok, and that they will protect me.


26 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just want to say that I have been where you are now. Well, I was, but I made the decision to cut him out of my life completely (once I was an adult). It helped more than you can imagine to just break off all contact. He is dead to me.

I totally understand what you mean about wanting to experience childhood. I feel like my innocence was taken at such a young age and I never got to experience sexual things in a normal way once I became an adult. It is so unfair that we had that taken from us.

I also hate to be touched by anyone other than my husband or children. I devoted my life to children (by becoming a teacher) so I could reclaim some of my childhood.

Now that I am a mother, it all comes back from time to time in vivid detail. My anger at my mother is double that toward him. I wish you all the best in your healing. You WILL be able to have a happy life. You are not alone. It IS okay to be scared, but you are a brave woman. Thank you for sharing.

Mamalang said...

It is okay to feel this way, and it is okay to be scared. But you have taken steps to make it be okay. Not that what he did will ever be okay, but making it so you can be okay. Whatever you do, don't stop talking to the therapist. Virtual HUGS.

Pollyanna said...

The biggest thing I want to say to you is to keep going to therapy. Find a safe place and put yourself back together. It will take time, but you will feel better, and you will heal. I promise.

Been there done that.

Hugs to you.

Jessica said...

I echo mamalang... keep talking about it... keep getting it out. please don't hold in that kind of vile sickness... let it out... keep spitting it out.

as for taking care of him or cutting him out of your life... that decision is entirely up to you. it's hard to show someone respect when they so viciously disrespected you... you can do either though... you are strong enough to walk away and you are strong enough to stay. I will be praying for you... just please, don't stop talking. write it down, talk with the therapist, just get it out. {hugs}

Anonymous said...

It is NOT your fault. You were just a child, please don't blame yourself. You did not ask for it, and no one deserves to be abused. It is awful that a father could do this to his child. I think it's really normal to blame yourself, but the blame solely lies on your father's shoulders.

Is it possible to have a lawyer appointed as his Power of Attorney? I think for your healing to start you need to sever all ties with your father. You owe him nothing.

As for telling your secret you never know maybe your family will be more supportive than you think. I think you're really brave to be doing therapy it isn't easy but eventually you'll get to a place where you don't jump every time someone touches you. I know because I've been where you are right now, and it gets better.

My thoughts are with you, be strong and put yourself first. It doesn't make you selfish, it makes you a survivor.

Anonymous said...

I want to echo others' comments - please keep talking it out. My mother was in your shoes many, many years ago. She was the oldest daughter, and he started with her, then moved on to her younger sisters in turn. She kept her secret for many years, burying it with work and family. When she finally retired at 74 years of age, she couldn't hide from it any more, and suffered many of the symptoms and flashbacks you describe. She finally got help 2 years ago, and now, at age 81, she is in a better place emotionally.

You get to have any feelings you want to have. However, nothing that happened to you was your fault, and you didn't deserve any of it. Parents are supposed to be our protectors, and when they are not, it is the worst betrayal imaginable.

Please don't give up on yourself. You don't want to be touched right now, but there are people out here who are waiting with a hand out when you are ready for one.

Anonymous said...

Oh god your story just breaks my heart. You should have been protected and you weren't. It must have been terrifying and it must be terrifying now. I hope you find those hugs and that protection, and I feel such incredible sorrow that you were denied so much and hurt so badly.

Rachael said...

I'm so sorry. It just makes me sick that this kind of thing can happen to little kids. Or to anyone, really. It wasn't your fault. Please don't ever think that. It was NOT your fault. I hope you find strength in sharing and continue to talk to your therapist so you can begin to heal.

Anonymous said...

This is horrible; I'm so terribly sorry for what you went through. You have to know that this was NOT your fault; you were a little child!

As for your father, you DON'T have to take care of him. Or your mother for that matter if she refuses to respect your need for space. Your mental health trumps his medical issues in this case by a long shot. Tell them both you're out, he'll have to fend for himself or call social services and tell them they'll have to deal with him and why. It's what they're there for, and don't let them bully you into hanging in there and supporting your parents.

good luck.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry for all that you have been through.

This is going to sound harsh but you should leave. Cut them out of your life. Go somewhere else and give yourself space to heal. I am quite a bit older and just had the strength to cut my abusive father out of my life. I have never felt so good. Such a burden has been lifted.

Best of luck to you.

Avalon said...

I can't keep you safe, or tell you that it's going to be OK. It will take a lot of work to be OK, but you have already started on that path.

The most I can tell you is that you have every right to feel the way you do. And every right to make whatever decisions work best for you. For most of your life, your choices were taken away from you by a predator. You have those rights back now.......so don't let anyone tell you how you need to exercise them.

Good luck.

MissAnna said...

You were a CHILD. His job was to protect you. Not abuse you. It was not your fault. It IS NOT your fault. My heart hurts for you. I hope that you can continue the therapy and that your therapist is a good one. She can probably help you explore alternatives to being the power of attorney for your family. States have resources for that and your healing is more important than he is. It's your turn to take care of yourself.

I wish you the best. I'll be thinking about you and rooting for you...

Staci said...

It is okay to feel what you do, and it is okay to be scared. You are so brave, not only for what you've had to endure, but for putting it into words.

You didn't deserve this at all, and it is in no way your fault. I wish you the best, and that you continue to be strong in talking about this with your therapist.

Little Monkies said...

If you have a good therapist, that's great. You might also want to consider one that has worked with sexual trauma and PTSD. There are different treatment options, but exposure therapy has been very effective for women who have been raped, abused and have had to live with this torment for years. It's very hard work, but a very solid and empirically supported way for you to help heal. My husband does exposure work with people with PTSD and says that he sees really amazing recovery and strength from the process. You need a therapist skilled and *trained* in exposure therapy who has worked in sexual trauma before or who is supervised by someone who has. Don't shortchange yourself on the mental health angle. It's worth every penny.

You do NOT have to maintain a relationship with your abuser. Blood means nothing, you can choose to be in the relationships you want. You are brave, keep that energy for yourself and your healing. I wish you peace.

Anonymous said...

Wow, that was nearly like reading my own story. I'm sure yours is worse than you are saying - and mine was worse, too. I was expected to take care of my parents when they got old - and decided not to do it. I became the 'bad child' and still have 2 brothers that won't talk to me - at least you don't have that to worry about. When my dad died, I was so relieved that I had to concentrate hard not to be laughing and spilling over with joy when I went to his visitation - but I couldn't pass up a chance to see that old pedophile dead! When my mom died, I finally felt free ( you see, she knew what was going on, and as long as he wasn't 'bothering' her, she didn't care.)
The old 'going away in your mind' trick works so well, we forget that it is part of the walls we build, and it has to go before we can become whole again. Stick with the therapy. Now that your secret is out, perhaps find some group therapy with other sexual abuse survivors? That helped me a lot. Just to look at someone else who looks back and says "I know what you mean..." is very freeing. I accepted my first hugs in a very, very long time in those sessions.

At 21 you may have a long way to go. It is still pretty fresh - But you can get revenge here by not letting the bas@*rds that stole your childhood have any more of your life. Get going. Life really is 10% what happened to us, and 90% what we do with it. Write the (insert favored profane name here) a letter through a lawyer revoking your legal papers, and cut yourself free! Don't think he won't know why. Best wishes for your recovery, and your new life. God be with you always. ~M.

Tiffi33 said...

first step is the hardest, saying it out loud to someone...
keep up w the Therapy..it will do worlds of good..

I dealt with similar things, and it took me well in to my 20's to come to terms with it..now I am a STRONG woman, as you will be too.

DO NOT let your mother guilt you..do not let your father guilt you, cut your ties if that is what you gave to do..and no you do NOT have to see him..do NOT.

Set up appropriate boundaries, and if people don't want to play by your rules, then don't see them...

Find a good friend and lean on them..you will need someone...
Most of all, be STRONG.
life can suck, and bad things happen, but your inner strength is what will make you an amazing woman and you will some thru this

Tabitha said...

There is a new website up called Violence Unsilenced, where people are sharing their stories of domestic abuse and violence; you might benefit from sharing this there, too.

http://violenceunsilenced.com

Jaelithe said...

I agree with everyone else who says cut him out of your life. Let him be sick. Let him figure out how to take care of himself. He is, after all, an adult.

You are under no obligation to him. He was never a real father to you. He made a CHOICE, a choice to ruin his relationship with you. And he continues to make that choice, over and over again, every single day that he does not come forward and admit to the world what he has done and beg your forgiveness. He's not making this choice because there is anything wrong with you. He is making that choice because there is something terribly wrong with him.

It is not your fault. It was never your fault. And if you run away from all of this and start a new life far away from your abuser, and he suffers because of it, that will also not be your fault.

Do what you need to do. I know it's hard to think about cutting yourself off from your family and striking out on your own at 21. If you do it, it will be hard, and you will feel lonely, and you will struggle as a student without a safety net. And you will make some mistakes and you will be angry that no one will be there to catch you. But in the long run, you will be okay. Obviously if you are capable of taking care of all these other people, you are capable of taking care of just yourself.

flutter said...

Let me correct you on something...you don't owe him shit. You do not have to take care of him. It isn't your responsibility.

Shelli said...

you owe this ass nothing. give a lawyer the power of attourney and be done with it.

Anonymous said...

I was also sexually abused as a child. But not from my father, from my grandfather. He died when I was 11, but I still, to this day, suffer from panic attacks when I try to sleep anywhere but home(I am 32 now). So I hate to travel because of him. These men are the sickest of sick. They have no idea (or don't care) that they are scarring children for life. I would try to make the state handle him if I were you. You don't deserve to have to live through that pain again.

Of course it wasn't your fault! You probably couldn't have stopped it if you tried. Please hang in there. Therapy can work wonders. I wish you the best of luck.

Anonymous said...

What happened to you is really terrible and it's great that you are seeking help, you should definitely stick with that.

As for the POA, you do not have be his power of attorney. It is not your legal obligation to act on his behalf. He chose you, you did not sign up. Just refuse to act, he will then have to appoint someone else.

St said...

I know. And there are others out there who know. And it's okay, it's all so fresh and pressing right now but it can get better. Keep sharing your story. Networking with other survivors can be healing. RAINN.org is a great resource.
If you can do it, cut him out and anyone else you need to get away from.

Pamela said...

You don't owe him anything. You do not have to care for him, be his power of attorney, you do not.

You owe you. You owe it to yourself to work through the horrible things that happened to you. You owe yourself the best therapy, the best environment, the safest places. Press on. You can feel safe.

Butterfly said...

Your writing is heartbreaking and beautiful, and when one of us survivors goes public with our abuse, it is like a win for us all. Good for you for saying it out loud, and typing it in here. You are strong and getting stronger every day, and your power is in your truth.

www.reasonsyoushouldntfuckkids.com

Anonymous said...

Someone wrote about you basically calling you a liar on many of these points.

http://kaisermommy.com/2009/08/14/you-were-always-enough/