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#18412 - 05/12/03 12:41 PM Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
josephd Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/12/03
Posts: 23
Loc: US
I'm 26 and live with my common law wife and 1 year old daughter. I was sexually abused from the age of 13 - 21, off and on... kept going back. I'm struggling with many things in my life right now, mostly my believe in myself. I don't know anymore what's real and what's not... I feel like I have 2 people inside me. One that wants to be such a good person and be a great partner, son, brother... etc. Then there's another side of me that doesn't care about anyone but myself, who lies, steals, spends, does drugs, drinks... etc.

I don't know what's wrong with me and everyday has been such a struggle for so many years now. I'm losing my family, because of all these things. I think my biggest problem is that no one understands anything that I'm going through, not even myself. I just keep wondering, was i born this way? Am I this person, why do I feel so guilty all the time? Why do I feel like I can't live with myself this way? Why doesn't it go away? I've had some professional help, individually and with my partner, but I don't feel like anything has really come out of my abuse history.

It's just so hard, all time. It's so hard to believe in myself enough to keep going, to believe that I can turn this all around... that I'm worthy of love, and that I'll learn how to give it. What's real? My memory is so bad now that I can't remember a thing. I'm anxious all the time, I'm having trouble being a good father because I think she sees through me.

Where do I start, what can I do... I'm ready, it's time... I have no where left to hide this all. Please, help me.

_________________________
"We will either find a way or make one."

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#18413 - 05/12/03 01:01 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
zadok1 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/02
Posts: 188
Loc: Ohio
I donít have the magic answers, perhaps another here has found them. I do know the utter despair you describe though. The steps towards healing sound remarkably simple, and the way of doing them also sounds simple. You learn to accept and love yourself again, and you discover the things that enable you to live comfortably. The lies, the drugs, the sex and on and on are all the way you are currently dealing with life, and you must learn to deal with it in other ways, healthy ways.

First, not all therapists are created equal. Find one who specializes in childhood sexual abuse, so that you get someone who understands and can help. A doctor who excels at marriage counseling may suck at helping you.

How do you stop the destructive behaviors? You just do, period. I know that is very over simplified, but when it all washes out, no therapist or drug is going to stop you from lying, cheating and doing drugs. As you learn where the pain lies, and find relief from it, you slowly begin to love and respect yourself again. I was able to stop many things that were dragging me down, because I finally loved myself enough to stop. Your comments cover a whole lot of ground, more than you realize. Everyone here has different issues, but it is really amazing how much they are alike too. Welcome, and keep on coming in here, reading and posting. Take some time to learn and grow, and someday you may find peace again, but it isnít quick and it isnít easy. You have to really want healing, and you have to really work hard to find it.

jeff

_________________________
The world is a dangerous place, not because of those that are evil, but because of those who do nothing about them- Albert Einstein

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#18414 - 05/12/03 02:14 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
JosephD:

Not much to add to Jeff's good words, except to say you are certainly not alone in any of these feelings you have or places you are in.

Here's some links to a couple of articles that might help a bit:

http://www.malesurvivor.org/articles/singer2.htm

http://www.malesurvivor.org/articles/singer1.htm

JosephD there is power just in coming here & telling your truth. Hope you keep coming & find mutual support here. Take care.

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#18415 - 05/12/03 05:35 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
josephd

Zadok says it all, recovery isn't an easy ride - but is your life right now ? It probably isn't either.

Quote:
Where do I start, what can I do... I'm ready, it's time... I have no where left to hide this all. Please, help me.
These are the greatest words ever Joseph, you've made your choice to start. There is nowhere to hide - how long have we tried that ? I tried for over thirty years and it doesn't work. You have such a good chance at your age.
And never think that asking for help is a sign of weakness, it's a sign of great strength.

Check out your Government web site, there's some good advice and links there surprisingly, and you might find links to a group or a therapist in your area that specialises in SA and it's problems.

Finding a therapist who knows the issues we face is very important I think, and well worth the effort even if it means travelling.

Quote:
I think my biggest problem is that no one understands anything that I'm going through, not even myself. I just keep wondering, was i born this way? Am I this person, why do I feel so guilty all the time?
Keep coming here as well, we understand.
You weren't born that way and you weren't guilty. Sometime soon you'll KNOW that's the truth.

Take care
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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#18416 - 05/12/03 06:00 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
josephd Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/12/03
Posts: 23
Loc: US
Thank you all for your responses, it's so good just to hear from other people... I find often times I'm just being bombarded with guilt from those who don't understand. My first step is going to be to find a support group and/or a therapist who specializes in SA. I think it would be a huge help for me to speak with someone who specializes in sexual abuse, and help me identify things.

Again, I appreciate the responses, it made me feel so much better just to read them. This is my start... it's hard, but you're right... it already is really hard. Thanks friends.

_________________________
"We will either find a way or make one."

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#18417 - 05/12/03 08:02 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
ernie Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 121
Loc: Portland, Maine
Josephd,
You already have taken a huge step my coming here for help. The men that are here are no different than yourself, each facing a demon that won't go away. The biggest thing is to keep up your self esteem, mine was so low, I don't even want to recall what I thought of doing to myself. Take pride in the positive things in your life, seek the help you need and don't be afraid. No one will think you are a freak of nature. It may be hard for them to understand how something so awful could really happen to someone but you know what............it did to all of us. Come back here often, blow off your steam. Everytime you pick up your child give an extra hug and kiss for those that you missed receiving. Stay strong, be you.
Bob

_________________________
The roads of life are full of stones but, they can be moved take my hand we will help each other.

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#18418 - 05/12/03 09:26 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
The Dean Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 2080
Loc: Milwaukee, WI
Hello josephd, and welcome. I would like to try to give you a survivor 101 course. I don't have one! But here are some thoughts I share with you as another man who was raped and tortured, over several years.

1. The very first time you were molested as a child, your life was changed forever. Changed, NOT ruined.

2 From that day to now, there is no way in the world that you could control yourself in everyway all the time. You could not know who you were, and you probably wondered what it was about you that got your perp or perps do harm you so badly.

3 Being a victim of CSA is not like having your appendix out. There is no quick fix, and the scar stays a very long time. This is not "hurt lite." You suffered, many times, what can only be called an atrocity. It is like a war crime.

4. You are simply an amazing man to have survived, to have someone you love and to have made a child with. That is no "little" accomplishment for boys harmed to the depths of our soul.

5. You can expect to think all kinds of ridiculous things like: I don't think I am as good a man as others! (Bull!)
I must be really a whacko. (Bull). No one can love me. (more bull.) the list goes on and on with the lies we tell ourselves and let others tell us. One of the guys like Victor who are whizbangs with the computer can give you a link to that topic on our forum. No more lies!

6. You may think that no one ever had done to him what they did to you--I mean this was really awful! Well many of us had "really awful" things done to us--you really can't shock anyone here. We accept you are you are, and we like you as you are, because you have decided to stop being a victim and become a survivor.

7. You probably have had and/or will have dreams and thoughts and fantasies that bother you and that you are afraid of. I think it is close to 100% of us that have had those.

8. You are not responsible for any of it. And you have a dimished responsibility for some of your actions today due to the harm done to you, the whole you.

9. You may be tempted to give up sometimes. But, you already know that such a thought is useless and hard to do once someone has gotten as far as you have in chosing to journey towards wellness.

10. You do have some control, and some power to make some good choice for yourself today--e.g. no more drugs etc.

josephd, you have a right to brag, you are a good man on the toughest task you will ever have--but you are obviously up to it.

I tell folks who are broken to do this or something like it. Pick up your little daughter and hold her in your arms. Look at how beautiful she is, so innocent, so vulnerable, so dependent on others to love her and care for her and help her know what a miracle she is.

Next step--that was you once and people felt all those thingsa about you! You are a boy, but that is the only difference. Then, I ask people to think about what has happened to them, not what they have done, but what has happened to them to make them who they are today. The story between the day when people held you in their arms and cooed at you and kissed your little head and talked jibberish to you; that story gives you and insight into the things you have to change and do for yourslef so that you are able to see yourseplf as precious, and loveable and a true miracle.

We will help you if you want us to.

Bob

_________________________
If we do not live what we believe, then we will begin to believe what we live.

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#18419 - 05/12/03 10:23 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
Ivanhoe Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/19/03
Posts: 1907
Joseph,
Just have to add a word or two.
Aren't these guys something else? Where in heavens name did they come from? Why are they here? How do they know what to say? How can they be so supportive? My perps weren't. Were yours supportive? Did they want the best for you? Did they give you encouragement or drag you down and make you wish that you could die?
Welcome Joseph. Great name, by the way. Before long, you'll be encouraging someone here, yes you will, just you see.
Whatever you do, go easy on yourself, take your time, don't reveal anymore than you want to. But come back and talk and share your story and feel the power of these guys here. Ya, I think that most of them are supermen--the rest of us are, maybe, Batman and Robin. But all of us are brothers of the wolf..........now, does someone want to explain that to Joseph.
David

_________________________
"No soul is desolate as long as there is a human being for whom it can feel trust and reverence."
George Eliot

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#18420 - 05/12/03 10:27 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
Mike Church Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 01/23/03
Posts: 3439
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Joseph D
Quote:

Where do I start, what can I do... I'm ready, it's time... I have no where left to hide this all. Please, help me.
Welcome Josephd. You have made the first step. You cannot do it alone. You are in the right place. Here you will find brotherhood compassion and understanding as well as a whole lot of warmth and love. We do not judge for we have walked in your shoes and your footprints.

We are all here for the same reason; to share our experiences,to explore areas of sucess and to try new things.
The road you are on is not an easy one to travel but it is the right one. I too did heroin and have been in aa for 26 years.

I posted under Malesurvivor a Post "Millions of true stories". Read it and understand that you are not alone ever. You are with us and part of the pack of wolves. We are wolves because we are social, protect our own and look after the injured and god knows there are many of us who are injured but not so badly we cannot heal.

So listen, post, reply and heal with us. It is a journey worth taking.

_________________________
Mikey

IT REALLY IS OK TO STUMBLE. NONE OF US ARE PERFECT.

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#18421 - 05/14/03 04:51 PM Re: Nobody said it was easy... no one ever said it would be this hard
josephd Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/12/03
Posts: 23
Loc: US
You guys are all something else. You must really understand what this all feels like to offer such great words of support... it makes such a huge difference to have understanding. It makes me feel like I'm not crazy. I have decided on something, for the past 2 days anyways, I'm not blaming myself anymore. This guilt and blame I've been putting myself through for so long... I've decided to try and let that go. No matter what happens, I'm not going to blame myself or get down on myself. If I lapse (which I expect to do), I'm going to recognize it and move on.

I've also asked my partner to support me by learning about what I'm going through. She's totally agreed, so that's a big help. I think if she reads and learns a bit about what someone in our situation is living with, it will help her understand... and hopefully help her, help me... by pointing things out, noticing behaviors.. and such.

I already feel free. I feel like putting all these reasons together, for the way things are, and helping me so much. By simply not blaming myself for being a certain way, I'm working on finding out why it is that way... and changing it. For myself, for my wife, for my child and for my family.

You guys are all great people, thanks for your support and I plan to be here quite often!

Wolfpack - try now, we dare you

- Joseph

_________________________
"We will either find a way or make one."

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