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#124717 - 07/16/03 12:26 PM Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
WhyMe Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 434
It seems to be very difficult for many of us to find a support group. When I broaden my internet searches specifying only "abuse", I am provided links for several kinds of abuse, including various forms of sexual abuse, as well as bullying. (See definition of bullying below.)

These links state that the long-term effects of male sexual abuse are surprisingly similar to the effects of being bullied as a child.

  • If you were sexually abused, would you consider going to a support group for people who had been bullied?
  • If you were bullied, would you consider going to a support group for people who had been sexually abused?
  • Finally, imagine you have found a therapist or other group facilitator who has agreed to lead a group. However, he requires 10 members in the group.
    Suppose you have five men who were bullied and five men who were sexually abused. Do you think the two groups should be combined to meet the requirement of 10 people to form a group?


WhyMe

Definitions: SCHOOL BULLY
Refusal (not inability) to think rationally about themselves and others; Small scale Terrorist, with behavior mostly taking place during school time; Justifies terrorist activities towards others with self psychological excuses ("I want to appear tough and in control"); Enjoys enforcing power on others and causing extreme fear; Over-bearing person who tyrannizes the weak; To rule by intimidation, terror; Threatens or acts violence on others.

(The only differences between a terrorist and a bully, is in the organized planning or cause of the activity, and the scale of terror. A bullied child will believe that there is no difference between a terrorist and a bully given the above definitions.)


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#124718 - 07/16/03 06:23 PM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
WhyMe
Personally I would say "yes" to all those questions, and I would think that although it might seem "second best" it might well be surprisingly similar to our situation.

The only thing I can see that might present itself as a problem is the SA survivor being horrified at the level of violence the others experiened, although many of us suffered violence as well as SA. And the opposite, they might well be horrified at the facts of SA, but so often violence can be a sexual thing.
So it might have it's benefits in opening up peoples awareness.

In group work I think it would work, our group talk about all sorts of things, indeed we have had sessions where SA has hardly been mentioned.
The common factor is I think the most affecting one - the abuse of power.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#124719 - 07/16/03 10:17 PM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5778
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA
The definition of the school bully sure sounds like a lot of sexual abusers I've seen over the years.

The proposal of a support group for those bullied in school combined with survivors of sexual abuse may not be off the mark for a lot of survivors.

Bullies and sexual abusers often use power and control to get their needs met. While sexual abuse is different from physical threats or abuse, the emotional consequences can be similar.

Perhaps the issue is being victimized. If you can find commonality in being used/abused/victimized, maybe the kind of group you go to doesn't matter.

Ken


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#124720 - 07/16/03 11:53 PM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
Don-NY Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/06/02
Posts: 546
Loc: Long Island, NY
As the former target of several bullies, the last occasion being when I was 19 years old, I would agree that there is little difference.
Quote:

Skinny little wimp. Lardass. Big nose. Dumbo ears. Freckle face. Sissy. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT????
Do these words hurt any less than a smack in the face?

When it crosses over to physical bullying, what difference really if it is your arm, neck, or genitals that are attacked?

Assault, violation, harassment, neglect, sexual abuse.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE? REALLY?

To be honest, I suppose the big difference is the still primitive and bizzarely hypocritical attitudes and beliefs about sexuality that permeate our culture and lives.

Hold these thoughts in your mind simultaneously for a few minutes
  • Victoria's Secret commercials.
  • Abstinence programs for teenagers.
  • Commercials for "Girl's Gone Wild".
  • Just say NO!
  • Queer as Folk.
  • Matthew Sheppard.


Yes, we have a long way to go.


Quote:
We are not helpless,
We are men.

What lies between us,
It can be set aside,
And ended.

Every day we learn more how to hate.
Then we shut the door, and we tell ourselves,
We can't relate.

Only to the ones who are the same,
But even they are different,
And ever so,
They shall remain.

Stephen Stills -
Now this probably should go in the News forum, but I think it belongs in this thread. It's from today's Newsday, my local paper.

The story really troubles me for several reasons. A boy was bullied; sexually harassed; sexually abused, although he says he resisted any actual physical acts.

I think what bothers me most is the way that the adults involved acted. I also have the feeling that this story is not complete; parts have been left out.

Anyway, here's the link, but I don't know how long it will be good.

http://www.newsday.com/news/printedition...ny-linews-print

Does this story upset or sadden anyone else?

(I'll post the text in the News forum.)

Donald

_________________________
If you understand everything, some things are just as they are. If you understand nothing, things are still just as they are.

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#124721 - 07/17/03 12:03 AM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
WhyMe Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 434
When I ran into the bully sites, I could not believe how violent bullies are. Schools are like war zones and suicides from being bullied (called bullycide) are epidemic. I knew some schools had problems. but I always assumed they were related to drugs or race clashes. But that is not always the case.

Regarding Dave's post: Your "second best" comment. I had wondered when survivors of different kinds of abuse are mixed in a group, if there is a tendency to "rate" people with different backgrounds from yourself, You may think you are worse off than others (or they are worse off than you). Would the people deemed to have the most traumatic experiences resent those with less trauma? (How ever could you define degrees of trauma?)

If the men want to interact with someone who understand their level of suffering, would the group split into Trauma Level 1, Trauma Level 2, etc.? Or would you say it all depends on the skills of the therapist or group facilitator to guide, steer, and direct the group?

Regarding Ken's post: Can anyone come up with a name for a mixed support group, without it sounding like its leans more toward one experience than another?

Here is one for starters: Male Survivors Held Prisoner By Fear

Too long?

Lots of Love
WhyMe
P.S. Do I mean Love Level 1 or Love Level 2, etc. ?


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#124722 - 07/17/03 12:28 AM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
WhyMe Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 434
Donald,

We were typing posts at the same time. You beat me!

Yes the story about the disabled boy being abused is sad. But more so, it is sickening that adults are allowed to get away with so much and young people have so little protection.


Quote:
Do these words hurt any less than a smack in the face?

When it crosses over to physical bullying, what difference really if it is your arm, neck, or genitals that are attacked?

Assault, violation, harassment, neglect, sexual abuse.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE? REALLY?

Let me shake your hand! I totally agree with you. We may all start out at different places in our experiences. But we all react to what has been done to us, and experience dramtic effects on the quality of our lives.

But we all end up in the same place: broken men whose spirits have been crushed. At this point, it doesn't really matter whether a car ran over our spirits or a tree fell on our spirits. How about a steam roller crushed our spirits?

My point is this. We feel victimized by those who abused us. Sometimes we feel even more victimized by the system that is supposed to protect us and help us recover.

Please, please, please... don't ever let us victimize each other for being different. We are all in this together. We are all wounded, but we can heal with each other's patient encouragment. I love you all for being so accepting of me when no one else has been. THANK YOU!

WhyMe


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#124723 - 07/17/03 02:31 AM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
WhyMe Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 434
Looking back at my posts above, my insecurity is showing. I am such an oppressed victim that I believe I am too incompetent to even be a victim that is acceptable to everybody. So I disqualify myself ahead of time to save others the trouble.

I wonder what it would be like to walk into someone's home, a party, or even a place of employment and think they might actually want me there. Instead of worrying they will kick me out when they discover the real me. Hhmmm That's too young for me to remember.


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#124724 - 07/17/03 09:32 AM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Quote:
I wonder what it would be like to walk into someone's home, a party, or even a place of employment and think they might actually want me there.
WhyMe,

You're there. We want you here. Thanks for dropping in. Please come back often. We're here for you.

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#124725 - 07/17/03 03:37 PM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
WhyMe Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/03
Posts: 434
Thanks Joe


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#124726 - 07/18/03 07:15 AM Re: Support Groups -- Broadening the Scope of the Search
michael Joseph Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/11/01
Posts: 2719
Loc: Virginia
After being abused by grandparents, cousins, and a father figure, I had a year off only to move to a new high school where I was beat by half my gym class for 8 months. If I tried to fight back they beat me worse.

_________________________
Standing together is so much better than hiding in the dark.
***I am a three time WoR Retreat Alumni***
The Round Table, Men's CSA Group, Monday 7:30pm CST, MaleSurvivor Chat

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