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#188456 - 10/23/07 10:14 AM Can People Spot Survivors??
kellygtx Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/11/07
Posts: 412
Loc: Texas, USA
Can non-survivors spot survivors? Can survivors spot other survivors? How?

I was wondering this for a couple of months. Let me tell you why - When my wife and I went to Scottsdale AZ so I could attend a one week intensive program for survivors we stayed at her parents winter house in Gilbert. Her parents neighbor, Florence, came over to meet us one evening. We visited very briefly and as usual I made myself very scarce and left most of the visiting to my wife. The next day Florence came back over and asked for me, she said she had something she wanted to give me. When I came out she handed me a small clay tablet about the size of a domino. It was a relief of the seated Buddha. She said it was very old (she later told us she has an antique business) and had been blessed by the Dali Lama. I said "Thank You" and pretty much left it at that - I hate to get gifts.

Later, when my wife told my mother in law the story, my mother in law said that Florence had been raped by her father repeatedly when she was a young girl and she did not disclose until she has in her late thirties or early forties and it had nearly ruined her life. I was at first upset that someone told her my history (as I have always told them it is not their story to divulge, never). However, my wife and her mother swear they never told Florence about my history.

Well, I sat and visited with Florence several times during my stay. I did tell her my story and we both cried together many times. I never asked how she knew, but she knew.

I keep the small, fragile clay tile in my office with me.




Edited by kellygtx (10/23/07 10:15 AM)
_________________________
I bid you Peace.

Kelly

The time is always NOW. Breath In. Breath Out. Move On.

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#188461 - 10/23/07 12:40 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: kellygtx]
thecoopstah Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/19/04
Posts: 589
Loc: massachusetts
Great question in that i'm not so sure "we" as survivors can spot those of us who were abused however if this answers your question ....i can in fact size people up within the first 5 minutes i meet them good/bad or want no part of them,i have yet to be wrong..

Anyway i believe god puts people in our lives when the timing is right and although you, nor your wife told florence of your past i'm sure she could sense just from removing yourself enough to be scarce.

People who have been abused can ( i speak for myself of course )see something in us we may think we're not showing ( if you will ) for example....you distancing yourself from the situation and that speaks volumes in that most survivors who are either uncomfortable or not sure of our surroundings create a place of safety,whatever that may be,to protect "self" from any harm or unpredictability that could surface.

So to answer your question,for me, it's a tough one although i do in fact think we have the insight into other people and their behvaior therefore allowing ourselves to open to allowing others in our life....as you did with florence.

Hold onto that moment you and her experienced because one day it will mean so much you'll be amazed which goes directly back to god putting people in our lives when we least expect it and when the time is right and not before.

god bless you.

Coopstah

_________________________
" You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have "

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#188462 - 10/23/07 12:43 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: kellygtx]
Hauser Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 2962
Loc: United States
People can't read minds. They can tell if someone has issues though, especially over time. For instance, I work mostly with Latinos, and they ALLLLLLL have girlfriends or are married, most with kids.

So here I am at 38, working with them for over a year, and still have no girlfriend/kids. I've been poked and prodded for answers as to why, they ask me if I'm gay, so I just say yes, heh, (I love spreading rumors at work). But they don't really accept that.

I guess, in relation to your post though, that people can tell that we can't function in certain capacities, like establishing intimate relationships, or progress through life, or be in certain situations without panicking or whatever, but they don't know WHY, they just know that there is SOMETHING going on that we're not talking about openly.

In your case, I think she made an educated guess and happened to be right.


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#188464 - 10/23/07 01:44 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: kellygtx]
brokensoul Offline
Guest

Registered: 08/28/07
Posts: 101
Kelly,

I have been thinking of making a similar post. I was wanting to know if some survivors felt as if they had a bullseye painted on them that only perps could see. most of my abusers were linked by family or friends of family. But some of them seemed as if they were perched while preying and swooped down at me. I'm sure a lot of it had to do with body language. When I think back to those times there was so much bad crap going on in my life that I walked around with my head down and stayed isolated from society as much as possible.

Something of interest is that I feel as if I can spot women survivors because most of my girl friends and my ex wife as well as my current wife are survivors. But I can't tell you how I have done this because it is not something that I have tried to do.

So to sum it up yes I think that survivors can be spotted by people that know what to look for or are might just be sensitive in nature.

Take care,
brokensoul


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#188465 - 10/23/07 01:45 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: brokensoul]
MarkK Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/02/07
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denver, CO
survive-dar????


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#188466 - 10/23/07 01:50 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: Hauser]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
This has been brought up in other posts i've read, one of the contexts i read about this in made me feel so relieved- i can't remember who or what topic offhand, but something to the effect of "many of us find ourselves being drawn or attracted to other survivors, only finding out after beginning the relationship that the other was a survivor too. These relationships usually aren't healthy, however, in that often the two will play out abuse issues in the context of the relationship." I have 3 ex-g/f's who told me of abuse after starting to date, I had always wondered "what the hell?" w/ that. There's a lot of subtle cues we give off, and since so many of us are hyperattentive to people's unconscious giveaways of their mood or intent, we probably notice each other pretty quickly w/o realizing it.

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#188471 - 10/23/07 03:08 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: dgoods]
pain4ever Offline


Registered: 04/05/01
Posts: 1032
Anyone else equiped with Perp-dar?? (okay maybe its a little paranoia mixed in...LOL) Some guys totally creep me out for no reason...then i see his kids...enough said.

_________________________
Peace and Tranquility all depends on your frame of reference.

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#188474 - 10/23/07 03:45 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: pain4ever]
kellygtx Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/11/07
Posts: 412
Loc: Texas, USA
All -

Thanks for the comments. As for myself, I am very poor at reading peoples non-verbal communication - and I don't communicate very well verbally. One T I was seeing even commented on the fact that I am not perceptive of non verbal communication. So I don't think I would be good at spotting other survivors or perps (as evidenced by the fact I had a second perp when I was 13 that was after my brother stopped - a 40+ yo man that was a friend of my fathers).



Edited by kellygtx (10/23/07 03:45 PM)
_________________________
I bid you Peace.

Kelly

The time is always NOW. Breath In. Breath Out. Move On.

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#188476 - 10/23/07 04:47 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: kellygtx]
duncanUK Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/24/06
Posts: 632
i hope in someway people cant. i always think i have a label on me that attracts the wrong kind of attention. i get guys asking for sex sometimes - complete strangers... \:o i dont know what is wrong. if i am out on my bike i sometimes get guys asking for me to have sex with them.. perhaps they are joking around.. i dont know.

i think i have said too much....

_________________________
you dont see me. i am not really here. Its my fault.. all of it. I am to blame and no one else.

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#188663 - 10/24/07 06:16 PM Re: Can People Spot Survivors?? [Re: duncanUK]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
I remember a time at age 20 when i had a long walk home after missing the last train, some creep on a bike kept following alongside trying to pick me up, and i remember how angry he got when i let him ride alongside and talk to me, but *no* detour into the bushes. He swore at me and called me a tease, etc. This wasn't the first or last time I got propositioned by strange men, but that was the creepiest non-SA experience i had; when he got mad i was scared, looking for open apt. windows(to hear me shout) or cops around, and i stayed on the street, very visible. So don't feel bad, duncan, I get how you feel...

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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