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#167121 - 07/17/07 06:40 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: Kathryn]
thewife Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/16/07
Posts: 40
Again, everyone has been SO wonderful. My husband is still confused about what happened. He told me this morning that he never raised a hand to a woman ever, and maybe that's why he didn't stop her. He feels like he allowed it to happen. He says when he thinks about the actual sex act, all he can see is him pounding her head against a table. He doesn't see the sex, he sees violence. He knows that didn't happen, but that's what he sees. The thought of that night doesn't excite him, in fact it has the complete opposite affect. Although he is adamant that he did not want to have her touch him or be with her, he doesn't understand how she could have done this to him. Last night when I was telling him about what I learned, he told me he thought he was going to be sick. I think the idea that he could have been victimized by her made him ill. I also think that he feels like becuase his body responded he must have wanted it on some level. He still has so much guilt and shame. I know that I am partly to blame for this, as our conversations up until I found this site have focused on how he must have wanted to be with her. He has always denied this, even to the point that he would cry and say that if he were going to cheat, it would not have been her. He just keeps saying he wants to forget that it ever happened. That he only ever wanted to be my husband and to be true to me.

To answer a question from earlier, my husband was not previously sexually abused, but was punished in a way that we now consider abuse. He has struggled with low self esteem, and has always wanted people to like him. Maybe that played a part in this as well.


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#167132 - 07/17/07 08:25 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: thewife]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
wife,

my heart goes out to both of you - obviously he has other issues he's having to deal with - and you for the hurt you felt at what happened, the confusion, the mixed feelings, and then learning later your words might have hurt him more - but that wasn't your fault, ok? society just doesn't prepare us for the fact men can be victims, are not the only victimizers.

whatever your husband's past may have been as a child, clearly he has developed an inability to state succinctly the words "No" to a particular situation (in this case a sexual proposition) in a way that's understood, accepted and believed. call it a lack of assertiveness, whatever, but this woman obviously did not take him seriously that he was not interested in her.

at this point, there must be continuing difficulty since he has to work with her on a daily basis. as painful as it is, this situation surely needs to be discussed in order to clear the air, work thru the emotions and go forward with your lives.

to shut down, shut up and "forget it ever happened" is not really a good idea. it WILL pop up again and most likely at the worst moment and in the worst way. chances are good his difficulty in dealing with this woman stems from having shut down once before and therefore never learned how to assert himself in such a situation to make it clear he wasn't interested.

i cannot even help but to think that it's always possible if this is not discussed, at some point in the future she could accuse HIM of attempted rape, or even rape, and given the discrepancies in their sizes that you have described, well, who do you think would be believed? most people would really have a hard time believing the situation was reversed and honestly - without knowing the details you've provided, who could blame them?

whomever you might approach talking about this, with a counselor, a therapist, a family pastor, please do make sure the person is experienced in dealing with men as survivors, as this is critical in the advice you will be given and how your husband will be able to deal with this event.

the guys on this site are the best anywhere, and your husband would certainly be safe to come here; i hope he will do so.

it is commendable of you to come here and ask your questions. please do so any time.

all the best,
indy






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my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#167181 - 07/17/07 10:46 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: indygal]
thewife Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/16/07
Posts: 40
Indy,

We are currently seeing a wonderful pastoral counselor who has been very kind to both my husband and me. It is interesting that you brought up the possibility of her accusing him of rape, she already has. I confronted her the day I found out, and the story she told me was that my husband took advantage of her in a moment of weakness. This was before I knew the details of the night, and her story didn't check out even then. She then told the boss that she came to the shop that night to get her cell phone, that she had been drinking heavily, and that my husband began kissing her. She blacked out, and then remembered putting her clothes back on. Luckily, no one believed her story, and she was fired. After I found out about the "encounter", my husband didn't go back to work until she was gone, and no one else there knows about it. I have asked him if it would help to talk to her to maybe fill in some of the blank spots for him (although if she knew he didn't remember she'd probably lie) and he says that he is too afraid of what he would do to her if he ever saw her again. It is my understanding that she moved away. Good riddance.

Other than making it very clear to her the very next day that in his mind "it didn't happen," he says he totally blocked it out unless she brought it up, which she did occasionally. After a few more passes, which he shut down immediately, she settled for reminding him every so often that he broke his marriage vows. He said he just pretended everything was normal. He explained it like this (forgive me for being so long winded): He said it's like being in jail, and being the "girlfriend" of the biggest guy in the jail. You hate him, and hate was he's done/doing to you, but he protects you from everyone else, so you go along with it. But then once you are released from jail, you hate him, and NEVER want to think about him or what you did again. She kept his secret for him, so he felt like he had to keep her happy. Weird?


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#167683 - 07/19/07 02:56 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: Kathryn]
Halibut Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/06
Posts: 228
Loc: Alaska
Dear Wife,

In times of trauma people fight, flee or freeze. When I was abused I froze because I didn't believe it was happening.It was pretty much NOT my normal way of acting as I was always getting into school and hockey fights. But I froze...why I'll never know.
Hd your husband had the fight reflex kick in he certainly could have prevented it. Had the flee relex kicked in he could have pushed her aside and run. My guess is he froze....and probably feels like hell because of it. I have little doubt that he is asking himself the same question you are: why didn't he fight back. There may never be an answer. Sometimes people just act like deer in the headlights. At least I did.

I'm sorry this happened for both of you. It sounds like you've had a tremendous amount of understanding, compassion and reconciliation in the last few days. I'm glad for you, and hope the love you have for each other continues to pull you through this.

Frank


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#168385 - 07/22/07 09:05 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: thewife]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Originally Posted By: thewife
He said it's like being in jail, and being the "girlfriend" of the biggest guy in the jail. You hate him, and hate was he's done/doing to you, but he protects you from everyone else, so you go along with it. But then once you are released from jail, you hate him, and NEVER want to think about him or what you did again. She kept his secret for him, so he felt like he had to keep her happy. Weird?


wife,

i'm so sorry to have not been able to answer you sooner about this but i've been traveling and involved in some quite pressing issues.

it clearly sounds like your husband has some real issues going on more than what happened w/this woman. i mean, like, look at the example he gave you - it speaks volumes, you know ??

you said she'd already accused him of rape - did she go to the police? he may be in for an extremely difficult time - i just can't imagine - if he is a survivor, and this has stirred up memories, either conscious or unconcious, and he's already expressing "what he'd like to do to her" - well, it just sounds like a ticking time bomb from where i sit and i hope if i'm right a couple of survivors here might back me up? like, i think this guy needs more than counseling by your pastor - really -!

you might also consider, if you haven't already done so, discussing all this w/an attorney just to know what his rights are and all. it's also possible she could file a civil complaint, both against him and against her place of employment. i know you both want this to go away and it might, but it could also become an even bigger nightmare if she's the vindictive sort.

i really wish you all the best and please do post again if you are so inclined; your husband sounds like he really might benefit from reading some stories here also, i hope you'll encourage him to do so.

hang in there,
indy

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my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#168919 - 07/25/07 08:45 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: indygal]
thewife Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/16/07
Posts: 40
Indy,
Ok, this is getting weirder. FIrst, no she has not formally accused him of rape, and wouldn't, I am sure. SHe told the boss that story to embarrass him and to save her job. The boss didn't believe her, in fact, my husband denied ever having anything to do with her (which I supported, it would have been too embarrassing otherwise). After I confronted her, my husband did too and asked her why she lied to me. Her response to him was, "Did you want me to tell her how it really was, rough hard sex?" My husband just told her he wanted her to tell the truth (as I said before, he has no idea what the actual act was like because he can't remember it).

Ok, so we went away for the weekend, just us, to get away from evertyhing here. Beautful resort in the carribean. We decided to get a couples massage on the beach. Neither of us has ever had one before. So, we do it, and his person is a guy. He said it was no big deal. I'm right beside him the whole time. So, it's over and he jumps off the table and basically runs away. I catch up to him and he just keeps saying, "I need to take a shower, I'll tell you about it in a minute," and he takes off. So he stays in the shower forever, and when he comes out he's shaking still. Says that he was ok when it started, but when the guy started leaning over him he felt trapped, and really started to freak out. Kept telling himself it was no big deal, but then found himself just repeating over and over, it will be over in a minute. He started counting the wood slats on the gazebo above us, and then felt like he was watching it happen, but not really there. (That's how he explained his night with the girl). He says the feeling of being trapped was the same as he had that night, and of being diconnected. Then he said that he knew he was beat as a child, but wasn't molested. But he had a terrible reoccuring dream when he was little about Conan the Barbarian finding him in his room when he was sleeping. He used to sleep under his bed those nights.

We are meeting with the counselor tonight, and he's going to bring it all up with her, but I'm really starting to freak out. Could he be repressing something?


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#168934 - 07/25/07 10:18 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: thewife]
honey girl Offline
Member

Registered: 10/09/06
Posts: 245
Loc: Midwest US
Dear Wife,
I'm not a specialist, just a partner (and a CSA survivor myself).
There is some risk in projecting backwards--that is, in assuming abuse must have happened from present-day behaviors. People aren't that predictable, and there is an infinite range of responses, after all.
That said, what your husband is recounting to you suggests to me that there is a good chance that he will be recovering some pretty difficult memories. The feeling of "disassociation" is a fairly common response to a traumatic situation, for example, and he seems to have some experience with that.
If he does retrieve more specifics about his childhood, he may find it really challenging for a while. The immediacy of the memories can be overwhelming--it often becomes quite difficult sometimes to realize that it is not occurring in present-time.
It will be important for you to be as stable, and as separate, as you can be if that comes to pass. What I mean by "separate" is not being sucked into the horror and dismay, though you may indeed be intensely grieved and confused by his disclosures. He will appreciate your help in acknowledging the past, but also your reassurance that he is not only his past, or limited by it now. Everything can be turned upside down and shaken by realizations of this magnitude. Having you remain steady and unfazed, confident that he can regain his equilibrium even through the most dizzying times, will be an enormous help. (That is not an easy position to maintain, believe me, and that's often where the F&F forum members come in! \:\) )
Whoever your counselor is, it is essential that she/he has real expertise with male SA issues. General therapeutic competency is often not enough. For that matter, your H may decide that the counselor you have together is not the same one he will see to discuss any CSA history if that emerges. I urge you not to feel worried if that is the case. I myself am in the camp of people who think it's better for couples to have separate therapists for themselves and one together--it helps to avoid boundary issues. There's a thread that someone started on this question a few months ago that you might find interesting. Brokenhearted may have started it; I'm not sure.
There's also a thread from earlier this year on "what survivors need us to know" or something like that. Larry (Roadrunner) started it, if I recall correctly--my apologies if I am in error on this count. Reading that might be helpful too.
Good luck to you both. It is fortunate that you have a strong connection. As challenging as it seems right now, though, it will not stay this tough. You can get through it, and it will be better on the other side.
Peace,
HG

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I'm just a poor wayfaring stranger, a million miles away from home.

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#168946 - 07/25/07 11:47 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: honey girl]
mogigo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 1331
Loc: Colorado
God, don't what say wife. I'm so connected to everything your H is going through. I've been triggered so much by your situation. Just need to tell you his responses are so similar to mine. Please be strong and be there for him. I wish you were my wife. I needed your understanding and compassion after my assault. Sorry, not trying to steal your thread, but want you to know that I truley believe your H. I can relate in so many ways. This is a re-creation of my responses and feelings. I know your going to have a hard time but it is something that you can get through. Take him seriously, please. I can;t offer more because I'm still trying to come to terms myself, but I know that your H did not cheat on you, I feel strong in that. Your H is not alone and neither are you. Believe me. Stay strong, you are an amazing person .

I wish you the best wife, I hope you and your H can get past this, it is doable. You've helped me realize that there are people who will understand. You've helped me a great deal, I thank you for that.

Good luck wife and Stay strong, my thought's are with you.

Mike

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Thriving

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#169073 - 07/26/07 03:39 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: thewife]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Originally Posted By: thewife
Could he be repressing something?


smf,

because your husband is being triggered so suddenly, and you are being blitzed by his behavior probably faster than you can read and process the stories on this site as well as outside material (books, etc.) it's going to be very difficult for you to think about all that's going on right now - including possibilities of what may have happened to him as a child.

mostly you're going to have to trust your feelings, your instincts, try and be strong and not be afraid to keep posting your questions here because it's clear whatever may have happened to your husband, it has effected him deeply and may take considerable time to deal with.

he sounds like he's opening up to you and recalling events that represent a lot of fear to him - after all, a massage should make us relax, right? yet for him, it had the opposite effect.

it's also not unusual for a survivor - if your husband is indeed one - to deny molestation, or not to recall memories of csa.

there are just so many reasons here you both might want to consider professional guidance but i think the most important one remains the event that caused you to post in the first place and cannot be underestimated in it's significance - you are questioning whether your husband was raped and the woman in question has actually accused your husband - and your husband has no conscious recollection of the actual event.

it's definitely a good sign you are making attempts to bond closer together during this crisis but *beware* of the collective consciousness attitude that pressures us sometimes to just let things go because everything's ok at the moment - clearly, things are NOT ok and chances are pretty damn good they'll never be back to the way they were.

be patient with him and yourself, think about your options and what can be done. you can find a path through this, and it won't be one you have to go alone - nor will your husband. as mike said above, he's not alone, there are so many here who will welcome him - until then, i hope you continue to post. your knowledge gained can help guide him because until he's ready, there's only so much you can do, just be patient, listen and support him. it sounds like he does appreciate you very much and in that respect, you are very lucky.

all the best,
indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#169087 - 07/26/07 08:08 AM Re: Was my husband raped by a woman? [Re: mogigo]
thewife Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/16/07
Posts: 40
Again, thanks to everyone. Went to the counselor last night, she thinks that my H's reaction to the massage was a panic attack, brought on by the fact that he was not in control of the situation. They talked a lot about the night with the girl (I wasn't in there for this), same feelings, and she thinks that basically, becuase of the way he was taught to treat women (protect them), that he had the same sort of attack that night. Basically, he panicked becuase he was NOT in control of the situation, and then removed himself until it was over. As with the massage, he just kept reminding himself that it would be over soon. Rape.

Was my H abused as a child? No idea. Lots of things came up last night that leads him to think no.

Mike, hang in there.


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