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#189474 - 11/01/07 08:48 AM Putting faces to the numbers
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
In another thread today the point arose that many abused boys don't survive - Howard has cited the figure of 25% who don't live to reach 18.

This had encouraged me to talk about something that has come up over the past few days while I have been visiting my Mom and Dad in PA. I was talking to my Mom about how other boys in my Scout troop were also abused; I had sat down with the friend I was abused with in the last year of things, and between us we figured that there were at least 8 of us, maybe more.

I started doing the math. Our troop had 6 patrols with 5-6 boys showing up each week, so say 40 boys in all. One abuser got through 8 of them. So 20% whose lives were wrecked by the evil of one man.

What happened to the 8? I'm one, of course: alcohol, drugs, acting out, didn't begin to face things until I was in my 50s. My friend is another, and again: big alcohol and drug problems. He says he "got over it" and "it was a long time ago", but at the same time he feels he doesn't deserve a truly loving relationship with anyone.

Two have lost their lives. One got deep into drugs, was arrested, and hung himself in jail. He was my first serious girlfriend's little brother. Another became very promiscuous, turned tricks in Harrisburg because he couldn't hold a regular job, found refuge in heroin and ODed.

Three of the others are practically unapproachable. They talk to each other and do things together, but otherwise no one can reach them. The last guy has drifted from one job to another and hasn't been able to get anywhere professionally. He's remained single and isolated, and when I ran into him some years ago he didn't even want to look me in the eye.

One thing we had in common was that in some way or another we were all especially vulnerable in some way: some were just shy, I had medical problems, others were from a difficult home environment. Our little group could be textbook examples of how pedophiles can be so successful.

I'm not sure where this post is going. Guess I just needed to put real faces to the numbers. It's also a big "if only..." moment, but I know going there doesn't help.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#189477 - 11/01/07 09:28 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
Larry, thanks for posting this-
irt reminds me of another aspect of being a MALE survivor. Not only do we have all the usual "boys/men don't cry/aren't victims" crap, it's known that while more girls/women attempt suicide, more boys/men SUCCEED. Males have a deep instinct to resolve things concretely, to DO something, to be more "practical" or "left-brained" in their approach to any problem. How many times have you a heard of a woman complaining to a man, "I wasn't asking you what i should DO, i just wanted you to listen!"
I've also heard that men have a harder time "bouncing back" from losing a partner (whether death, or divorce, etc.) than women.
I'm not trying to generalize all over the place, but from my experience, these points seem valid and relevant. Remember Aesop's fable about the oak and the willow? Sometimes being strong isn't what we've been taught to assume it is..

_________________________
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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#189478 - 11/01/07 09:35 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
Gerald2007 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 157
Loc: Southeastern US
Larry

As always...a very thoughtful post. It brings home that I like all other survivors have had our lives affected by CSA.

I don't know any other survivors in my face-to-face world. That's why this place is so healing.

If only....that's a scary place to go. I think every one survivor or not have regrets about his past. As a survivor it's even even scarier -- the if only place that is.

I suppose we could consider ourselves "lucky"....compare to some of your friends. At least we are here to continue the struggle we sometimes call "recovery".

Grace & Peace,
Gerald




Edited by gcp2007 (11/01/07 09:37 AM)
_________________________
Alumnus: Weekend of Recovery - Dahlonega, May 2008 and May 2009
We are bound together by the pain of the past and our hopes for the future.

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#189483 - 11/01/07 10:20 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Gerald2007]
Jarrad Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/27/06
Posts: 1071
Loc: arizona
its really interesting to hear this. part of me feels like i am my own person and my life is unique. but on the other side, essentially i am just a number too. everything in my life is a statistic.


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#189484 - 11/01/07 10:42 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
kellygtx Offline
Guest

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

That was an amazing post! The statistics, when one stops to think about it, are frightening. It is a sad reminder that we are not alone in either our abuse or our reaction to that abuse. Sometimes we need to just give ourseleves credit for being alive to recover.

_________________________
I bid you Peace.

Kelly

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

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#189487 - 11/01/07 11:16 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: kellygtx]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6514
Loc: Terminus
Larry,

I keep wrestling with this issue of numbers and percentages and occurances and so-on. My root motivation in this focus seems to point to a base-line question of "who are we?"

You can put the emphasis on each of those three words.

WHO are we? Who are the survivors dealing with the abuse head-on? How many of us are there? Is it really 1 in 6 boys? Is it more? And why us? Were we chosen to be abused for some other reason than what we may think?

Who ARE we? Are our roles/positions in life determined by the abuse? Are we condemned to a life of turmoil or is that a variable? Are we damaged-goods in reality or just perception?

Who are WE? If the percentages are correct, then there are many millions of boys and men as walking wounded. Are WE at MS different because we are choosing to deal with it head-on? Are we at MS weak because we could not put it behind us and just get-on with life?

I've met and known several men who claim they were sexually abused as kids and have completely normal and productive lives. Why and how are WE different?

_________________________
We don't need another hero! [Aunty Entity 1985]

The Aftermath Video

My Absolute Hero!

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#189496 - 11/01/07 12:26 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Jarrad]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Gerald,

Originally Posted By: gcp2007
If only....that's a scary place to go. I think every one survivor or not have regrets about his past. As a survivor it's even even scarier -- the if only place that is.


It sure is. But okay, I will go there this once. My girlfriend's little brother was a scrawny shy kid who was 11 when the abuser got chased away from the Scout troop. I imagine he had been caught up in things a few months by then. I remember him going with the abuser alone, showing all the typical body language of a kid who knows what's going to happen to him next.

But that's me thinking about it now. At 14 I wasn't able to connect the dots and figure out why he looked so ashamed. Hell, I couldn't connect the dots even where myself was concerned. I had been abused two years before I figured out this had something to do with sex. It didn't occur to me that there was any other boy in all the world being hurt like this, and even when my friend got dragged into the picture I didn't figure out there might be more. Talk about naive, but sure, I had the right to be naive.

Yeah, if only....

I wasn't going to do this at all, but then I saw Jarrad's comment:

Originally Posted By: Jarrad
...essentially i am just a number too. everything in my life is a statistic.


You know, I sometimes think that. But looking at our group of 8 reminds me that these are all real kids - broken boys. This isn't about wallowing in the past. It's about recognizing that the statistics count the cost of the pain in terms of real lives wrecked and sometimes lost.

At the Mike Lew workshop we did an exercise which I won't reveal, since it's very powerful and helps a lot with guilt- and shame-busting if you get hit by his point only right at the end. But I will say it shows you what a huge accomplishment it is even to be functional at all. Just showing up at a workshop or conference is an act of great courage, and so is coming here to talk about things with guys you don't even know. Fuck the argument that it's the Internet and we're all anonymous. It's still a huge risk and we take that risk every time we hit "enter".

I guess looking at my group of 8 shows me how incredibly fortunate I am, and how fortunate we all are here on MS. We're the ones who, for whatever oddball reason, have been able to get it together and at least try. It's like an iceberg maybe. We're the tip showing above water, trying to heal and refusing to give up. That's already pretty cool (no pun intended).

It's even more significant when we think of those who didn't make it at all, or who are stuck in silence and isolation unable to face what happened to them or to dare to seek the answers they so desperately need.

Part of it's dumb luck, perhaps, but hey, let's lay some claims where we have the right to do so. The rest is just raw courage, guys. That's one thing that overwhelmed me in New York.

One guy who said he was wondering if he would make it through the day, but lasted the whole conference and seemed a changed man by the end - on Saturday evening he was joking about how scared he had been three days previously.

Another guy - couldn't have been more than 18-19 - there with his parents to support him. He was scared, but he showed up every day.

Another guy - also maybe 18-19 - sobbing his heart out after Marty Moran's play, but with a friend on each side to support him and keep him safe. He kept coming back.

Or how about Lou and Pat Serrano, who have been campaigning for male survivors for decades now, since their son told them he had been abused by their parish priest.

NY keeps clobbering me with new ideas and ways of looking at things, and I guess this is another one. Yeah, it sucks bigtime what happened to us, but as kids we kept finding the courage and means, however desperate, to just keep getting through one more day. As older teens and adults we are survivors because we fought off all the false lessons long enough and well enough to decide our lives are worth living and our future is ours if we are willing to reclaim it. We have made that choice. We should appreciate that in ourselves and each other, because we have EARNED our place here - we didn't just tumble in here off the last load of turnips.

I feel so honored and proud to be among you.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#189501 - 11/01/07 12:53 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
Hauser Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 2962
Loc: United States
Larry, back in 1991, I remember a 12yo boy that lived in the same small town that I did. 12 years old. His father came home from work one day that year and found him laying dead from a gunshot to his temple, self-inflicted. No suicide note or anything, he just up and did it. I always wonder what drove him to it, and I suspect that it was undisclosed sexual abuse, or worse, perhaps he disclosed to the wrong people. We'll never know.


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#189502 - 11/01/07 01:41 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Hauser]
mogigo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 1331
Loc: Colorado
I have these opposing views running thru me. I can picture what an entire neighborhood of survivor's look like, all living on the same street, and I use the anology of the wildlife coming out into the streets every night to dance and play with us (I know, pretty silly) but it seems almost like that needs to be the standard or I've failed in someway. Like healing won't happen until that's the norm. How do I assimilate into what's really reality. Pedophiles, murders, people that haven't any idea how selfish and perverse they are. It's easy too live in a world of us, but seems impossible to live in a world with "them".

I'm learning how, definately not easy, but I think it's just learning that they're not as important as us.

Were who will change thing's. I just need to understand that it won't happen in just my lifetime.

The good fight, right?

stay strong
Mike

_________________________
Thriving

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#189566 - 11/01/07 09:36 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: mogigo]
KeithR Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/28/06
Posts: 363
Loc: Georgia
When I first read this statistic on an earlier post ... 1 in 4 of us don't make it past 18 .... I just thought is was wrong, plain wrong. I thought how could that be. That can't be. There's no way.

Now I read Larry's experience.... and WOW. It really hits home. It is so very sad. I am still in shock though. I just really had no idea.

But me.... I was so self unaware. I had such high self esteem. I did so well in high school and college. I got such a good job.

So what happened to these poor other guys?

Now I realize I was suicidal. I just didn't know it. There was one time I was about to drive drunk.... so drunk I couldn't even put the key in the ignition. That's just an example. That's not to mention my sexual behaviors. When I look back, I can understand the statistic. I am very lucky to be here, and I am very glad that all of you are here with me.

Keith.


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#189575 - 11/01/07 10:41 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: KeithR]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Rob,

There are thousands of guys in therapy for CSA across the country, and of course MS is not the only site that addresses such issues. But yes, I do think there are millions of abused boys struggling to grow up right now, and thousands won't make it. They will end up in the morgue from things like drugs, alcohol, suicide, gang violence, crime, medical complications, STDs, or excessive risk-taking (speeding, as Keith refers to).

The 1 in 6 figure is probably low, because what it represents is acknowledged cases. Many guys won't admit abuse on a survey form for fear of exposure, or else because they are in denial in some way.

I think we are the fortunate ones, Rob. Yes, there are guys who just "get over it" somehow, but I think these cases are the minority and why these boys manage hasn't been studied yet. As for the rest, I think a lot of guys must just struggle along thinking their life sucks because that's the way the world is. That is, their feelings that they really don't deserve any better have come to define how they see the world in general.

What makes us different is that we see there has to be a better way and we have found whatever emotional strength it takes to seek it. That's already a wonderful thing when you look at the broader picture.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#189579 - 11/01/07 10:53 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
Jarrad Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/27/06
Posts: 1071
Loc: arizona
larry, there is always two sides of stats. there are is the negative side and the positive side. when i said that everything in my life is a stat, its true but they arent all negative. X out of X guys find this site. X out of X guys eat have good health. X out of X guys love their job. everything in life is a stat. not all are negative. it depends on which side of the number you fall on and what the figure is about. does it suck that so many guys are abused? yeah. does it suck that we made it through? no. and really i think it all has to do with luck and chance. thats what life is all about. you can calculate all you want but at the end of the day they are just numbers.


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#189709 - 11/02/07 05:45 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Jarrad]
GateKPR4 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/28/07
Posts: 955
Loc: North Carolina, USA
The fact that this site is here is a statement that somebody if finally paying attention to the problem. We didn't have anything like this when I was younger and talking about it was not an option for me at that time. I am amazed at how many of us end up with the same reactions, withdrawn, drugs, alcohol, wanting to die. I can see myself in so many of the posts here and I am grateful that there is a place to go. I do believe the numbers are a lot higher because most of us are to scared to report it. We can do the what ifs and speculate all we want and it remains the same. We are here we need support and we need to be here. I am very fortunate to have survived this long, last year was almost the end for me but again I asked for help. One more institution, one more treatment for drug abuse. sad as it is.
I don't know why some go on without a problem after abuse and we don't. I can't compare myself to those people. I only know my experience and how it changed my view of life and myself.

_________________________
I'm a normal person dealing with abnormal experiences.
The greatest discoveries we will find within ourselves.
Ricky
__m_ô¿ô_m__
|| || || || || || |

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#189716 - 11/02/07 06:03 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: GateKPR4]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
Gate,
Very good points.
One thing i am soooo tired of, every time an addiction comes up in a casual conversation (workplace, etc.), whether it be cigarettes, alcohol, drugs- there's always the guy who chips in w/ " I used to be/I knew somebody who was real bad w/ (whatever), one day I/they just stopped, and that was it."

I always kind of look at them w/ a puzzled frown- "Good for you...and your point being...?"

_________________________
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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#189722 - 11/02/07 06:22 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: KeithR]
scotia1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 05/27/07
Posts: 81
Great post. I agree that the 1 in 6 boys stat is very low. There are many many statistics out there and some are showing numbers as high as 1 in 2 (50%)! I guess the big question would be what is CSA? If it means some kind of sexual rape the numbers are smaller, however if it includes all forms of sexual touching or mental mind games that preps play, the numbers would off course be much higher. I say if it effects you negatively as a child sexually, then I say you were sexually abused.

Personally, I believe we haven’t even seen the tip of the iceberg as far as the actual numbers of children that are sexually abused in one way or another. I know however when I started to realise how wide spread this problem is I actually started to felt not so alone anymore, and it helped a bit (in a strange way).

What makes us different however is that we are in the minority when it comes to who speaks out about CSA. I believe most victims go to their grave without telling anyone, and that is sad.

All in all, we actually are among the strong ones believe it or not. The ones that are speaking up and trying to make things just a bit better. Therefor I am proud to be part of this group.

Scotia


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#189882 - 11/04/07 03:41 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: scotia1]
Leosha Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 3614
Loc: Right here
Let the face in my avatar be one of those 'numbers'. My younger brother, who did not survive the abuses in our home.

Leosha

_________________________
Avatar photo in memory of my younger brother Makar.

"Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted."~~~Martin Luther King Jr., 1963

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#189885 - 11/04/07 04:16 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: scotia1]
Power_water Offline
Guest

Registered: 09/14/07
Posts: 45
Loc: Portland, OR, USA
Ya! What Scotia said.

What sets us apart is we have a mission to perform, as part of our healing. If we can't work to help improve the problem, then the world is waste, and life is not worth living. If we can do something to increase awareness and change social views and protect more children, well then, I think that gives me a reason to keep struggling on. Certainly a high percentage of us have fallen by the way side, that doesn't make them any better or worse or lucky or unlucky. I personally feel this is a war we are fighting, and until that war becomes bigger than our own hopeless and desperate needs, well then there is nothing.
We owe it to the fallen, we owe it to our world, We have to be here, we have to get involved in some way, when we are able.

_________________________
Bring works of darkness to light

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#189890 - 11/04/07 06:35 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Power_water]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
I may not be at the same point in my recovery as, say, Curtis St. John, or others here, but i hope to be someday, and i certainly think that history shows that no injustice changes unless enough have the courage to stand up and say "This exists; this is NOT right, and i'm not laying down or staying silent any more!" No fault to those who aren't ready or able to do that- i just shudder to think "what if i had never found this site?"
Right now all i can contribute is my ear, and my voice, but trust me, were i a rich man there'd be no question of contributing. I wish insurance companies would take the long view of the cost of inadequate funding for prevention, outreach, support, etc. instead of focusing on the short-term.
ok, done babbling for now...

_________________________
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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#189950 - 11/04/07 04:08 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: dgoods]
scotia1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 05/27/07
Posts: 81
There has been reference here to some victims of CSA going about life without a problem. Personally I don’t believe that is possible. Sure many victims may go on to become wealthy and/or successful in a career but does that really mean escaping their CSA? I have been very open about my CSA over the last number of years (I’m not saying that others must be this way) and due to this have had many people disclose to me that they too were sexually abused as a child (probably because they felt the secret was safe with me). I have had disclosures from every walk of life, rich and poor (although mostly males).
It may seem from the outside that life for some people is fine, but inside it may not be the case. Sure some suffer more than others, but the so-called better-off people also have poor relationships, high divorce rates and also commit suicide.

Just something to ponder about our fellow survivors.

We are all in this together.

scotia


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#189958 - 11/04/07 07:01 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: KeithR]
scotia1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 05/27/07
Posts: 81
Some stats I found for 1988 in Canada (I'm sure the numbers would be very similar in the U.S., U.K. ect. I also feel that the numbers have probably increased over the years.

"The most extensive study of child sexual abuse in Canada was conducted by the Committee on Sexual Offences Against Children and Youths. Its report indicates that, among adult Canadians, 53 percent of women and 31 percent of men were sexually abused when they were children. (C. Bagley, Child Sexual Abuse in Canada: Further Analysis of the 1983 National Survey, Health and Welfare Canada, 1988"

scotia


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#190023 - 11/05/07 08:57 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: scotia1]
Grunty1967b Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 823
Loc: Australia
Larry,

I’ve never disclosed to anyone about my abuse other than my wife, My T and you guys here.

At times I think of how I might tell others and I think of a way in which to demonstrate the high rate of abuse and how it can touch anybody, anywhere.

I think of 1 in 6.

When I saw the topic “Putting faces to the numbers” I thought of 1 in 6. One in Six boys will be (or have been) abused by the age of 18.

That was me, you Larry and most every other male here at MS.

I work in a small team in an office. There are 6 of us. I’m the “one”.

I go to departmental meetings where there are many more people and I do a quick sum in my head on how many are present. Then I do the math and ponder the fact that there could be 5 or 6 victims in my midst.

This stirs me on to get better. To recover. To win.

It stirs me on to be an advocate to the best of my ability.

One in Six is too many. So is anything more than one.

Here’s to all of us!


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#190098 - 11/05/07 10:01 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Leosha]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Leosha,

Originally Posted By: Leosha
Let the face in my avatar be one of those 'numbers'. My younger brother, who did not survive the abuses in our home.


I was thinking of your little brother when I started this thread and the image in your avatar is one I doubt I will ever forget. I wish there were words that could convey some sense of how I feel about your loss. You have heard this before, but I will just repeat it once again: I am so sorry.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#190104 - 11/05/07 10:21 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
FLRich Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/21/04
Posts: 1404
(((((((Leshka)))))))


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#190106 - 11/05/07 10:53 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: FLRich]
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16265
I can't help but read this thread and think of the face of one of the broken boys that was abused in the same shack out by the airport where my brother and I were.

He was a friend. We played guitars together. Hung out together in high school as well as in the evenings. I found out one day a year or so back while watching Oprah that he had gone over to the dark side. On the FBI's most wanted list. No one's seen or heard from him for several years.

I grieve for him. He didn't deserve what happened to him. He too was vulnerable due at least in part to being the child of his parent's old age. He made terrible choices after he grew up.

I guess my point is that each abused broken boy was once a boy with hopes and dreams and only longed to be cared for and loved. Some of us came from homes where that was available to us, but many more of us did not.

I admire the men that have the courage to come here and work together on healing. My hope is that we become a force for healing of others, each of us in our own way, of course, but more importantly because together we are strong and together we can make a difference in the greater world.

Lots of love,

John

_________________________
“Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘Holy ____…! What a ride!’” ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#190114 - 11/06/07 12:39 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: WalkingSouth]
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7821
Hi, John. That is so sad, man. Think of all the lost potential in that little boy. Just really sad.

_________________________
Eddie

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#190550 - 11/09/07 12:22 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: EGL]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
After I started this thread I was wondering about whether the 8 kids I know were abused by the man who got to me and my friend were actually just the tip of the iceberg. I found my answer in Josef Spiegel's "Sexual Abuse of Males" (2003), which is a superb handbook for professionals.

Spiegel draws a distinction between abusers who abuse within the home and those who are looking for victims out in the general public, like in youth clubs, Scout troops, churches, etc.

He says that the intrafamial abuser will abuse, on average, 1-2 victims. That is, he goes for the vulnerable kids in the family and that's it. The abuser who roams around in public, however, will abuse, on average, 150 boys.

So yes, the eight faces I could talk about were almost certainly just the tip of the iceberg - possibly an enormous one.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#190562 - 11/09/07 02:08 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
Great. I suppose i could comfort myself with the... nah. He "roamed around in public", alright. Bastard. (him not you larry)

_________________________
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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#190570 - 11/09/07 07:37 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: dgoods]
GateKPR4 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/28/07
Posts: 955
Loc: North Carolina, USA
I know my younger brother was part of our group because he hung out with the younger brother of the abuser, who was in the control of the abuser. I'm not sure if he was abused but seems to me he shows a lot of the same signs as myself. Abuse of drugs and alcohol, anger, low self esteem. He is in therapy for the anger problem and has quit drinking trying to resolve his marital problems. He is supposed to be here in March with his family and I am wondering if it's time to break the silence. We don't talk about the abuser or the others from the group, kind of like a nonverbal agreement.

_________________________
I'm a normal person dealing with abnormal experiences.
The greatest discoveries we will find within ourselves.
Ricky
__m_ô¿ô_m__
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#190572 - 11/09/07 08:05 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
SEVEN ARROWS Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/12/07
Posts: 1298
In a lot of ways this thread makes me feel so guilty, especially you post Larry, about the abuser will abuse on average, 150 boys when its outside the family.
My so called dad introduced me to the pedo ring he was part of, so i was abused by family members, but also a lot of boys were abused outside the family, and i said and did nothing.
Every-time i let the memories of my abuse into my head, i cannot stop thinking that if i had said something then no other boy would have been put through the hell i went through.

I cannot shed nor do i feel i should be able to, this feeling that i could have done something.


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#190602 - 11/09/07 01:02 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: SEVEN ARROWS]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Seven Arrows,

I'm glad you speak up about this, because it gives me the chance to tell you that this is part of what it means when you hear that "it's not your fault".

This means none of it - not a single moment or second, no decision or lack of decision, none of the going back to the abuser or whatever else went on. It wasn't your fault.

It can never be the boy's task, for example, to break up a pedophile ring. In so many cases the boy just lives from day to day anyway, and even if you can look back and see choices here and there, that's you as an adult NOW in 2007, not you as a scared abused boy. Back then you probably didn't even see any choices, and when a boy doesn't see his options then he simply doesn't have those choices.

Look at it this way, bro. The men who abused you put a lot of effort into setting things up and keeping the abuse going back then. So now let them have all the blame as well - they worked for it.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#190606 - 11/09/07 01:19 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
alexey Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 08/16/05
Posts: 1674
Loc: Moscow, Russia
Larry, thanks for this post,

When I tell my T about abusers, she replaies that they have got what they deserved. I mean I didn't have a legal prosecution over the monsters who hurt me.

They could abuse other children. Maybe they got in jail, and in this way they must have got enough...

One of my classmates ended his life when I was in college. I think he was a survivor because I remember the things he tried to tell us about being raped.

Other guys from my childhood place of living suffered from drug addiction and commited crimes. Some got in jail. I think they were survivors, or at least their families just didn't care about them.

I have survived. I am glad.

Alexey

_________________________
(\__/)
(='.'=)
E[:]|||||[:]3
(")_(")
--------
When you feel all alone and unhappy, turn to you Inner Child and talk to Him.
You will see He can comfort you like nothing else!

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#190643 - 11/09/07 06:19 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: alexey]
Logan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/05/03
Posts: 1205
Loc: NY
Larry, first I wanna say thankyou for bring up this topic.

I can only speak from my own experience, and it sickens me to think that there probly were alot of other boys that had the same experience that I hadd considering that I was abuse by someone outside my family. A person that was involved with alot of extracoricular activities with boys.

I did not realize that my reckless behavior could have been directly related to what happend to me. I never questioned where my semi-suicidal behavior came from. I just went along knowing that it was self destructive not thinking that it may have been a result of the abuse and torture that I have sustained.

I recently found out that my risk taking behavior is a result of my PSTD, but I never put it together that my actions were a way of fighting what I went through.

I practice many of the things stated above, like: speeding and volunteering for the most dangerous jobs, and just doing stupid stuff that puts my life in jepordy.
Most recently I have been seriusly concidering joining the millitary just to go to Iraq not really thinking why I would want to do this, just knowing that I want to.

I guess I never made the direct link between my behavior and my abuse. Maybe I just thought that this is the way I am.

I guess I never looked at what my PTSD had to do with both my behavior and my abuse-I know it sounds really stupid and obvious but I did see that. Weird huh.

If this is the way that I behave, I know that my freinds that experienced this behave in many oif the same ways, I can only imagine that many others that this has happened to behave in a similar way and some don't make it.

This is really big. so am I just a statistic too? That my behavior is really more common than I thought? That alot of guys who have been abuserd do the same thing and if so, many of them would not be so lucky. I just never thought of it like that before. I guess there would be alot of guys that don't make it and its has so much to do with this.

I never thought of the bigger picture. i should probly be grateful that I am not one of the not so fortunate ones and that I have made it and should be grateful for that.


-Logan

_________________________
"Terrible thing to live in Fear"-Shawshank Redemption
WOR Alumnus Hope Springs 2009
"Quite a thing to live in fear, this is what is means to be a slave"
-Blade Runner

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#190735 - 11/10/07 02:38 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: Logan]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Logan,

Originally Posted By: Logan
I never thought of the bigger picture. i should probly be grateful that I am not one of the not so fortunate ones and that I have made it and should be grateful for that.


Maybe we can look at it this way together. Little Larry and Little Logan survived, though many times it must have been hard as hell to see what the point was or how they would get through even one more day.

All the recovery work we do is building on their courage and working in their honor.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#190741 - 11/10/07 05:20 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: KeithR]
RICK57 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Loc: ENGLAND
Larry - I can believe the figure of 150 victims of a perp outside of the family.

I was groomed and abused in 1969 & know that I was not the first. I have no proof of that, but something the perp once said to me 99% implied at least one other person that he'd got his hands on. I worked out who that person was & he is about 10 years older than me. Knowing what age range the perp likes, that means his 'career' probably started around 1960, give or take a year. He didn't stop, until I went to the police in October of 2004. That means that his 'activities' spanned around four and a half decades. I makes me feel sick actually typing that.

I know that he was often around young boys that played football in the local park, and I believe that's where he 'picked up most of his toys'. Identifying those who maybe appeared to be a little isolated, and deciding that they might 'like his attention'. I also know that he almost used to watch boys growing up, gradually befriending them as they grew towards 'the age that he liked'. Why would anyone be frightened of that nice friendly man that always spoke when he passed.

That's how he got me. I waws standing at the railway station with my dog, watching the trains. I'd seen him speaking to lot's of people, and there was no reason whatever to feel threatened. I was an intelligent kid, but he still got me, hook, line and sinker.

I feel guilty that I did not speak up sooner, but I counteract that by knowing that I spoke up first, opening the door for others to do the same. There are 2 people in my town that I am convinced he also abused, and they are the ones that make me feel most guilty. One is a pot head, that never leaves the house. The other is about 40 years old and looks 70. He is totally malnourished and an incapable alcoholic. When I see him staggering to/from the pub, my heart could break. He is still one of the politest people you could meet, but a totally lost soul. Even though he is lost, you can see the hurt in his eyes. There are others obvioulsy, one that got drunk and just laid down in the snow one New Years eve - it's with hindsight, that I see the haunted expression he used to carry around with him. It is out of respect for these lost souls, that I will not give in ever.

I've been to the bottom of the pit and crawled back out again. That means that in my heart, I know anyone else can.

Whatever we suffered, I believe that those of us here are some of the best people on the planet. We really are SURVIVORS, no matter what stage we are in the survival process.

I don't know what percentage of boys were abused, it may be as high as suggested, it may be less. Whatever the figure, even one abused child is 1 too many.

Last night, I went to see Joan Jett (she actually has 2 decent songs, not one), Motorhead (right at the top of their game, and the best I've ever seen them) and Alice Cooper (ever the showman, and like a rock pantomime for adults). During Joan Jett's performance, I received a tap on my shoulder - it was a friend who was bass player in the band I used to be in. We got talking about a few things and included Joan Jetts perfomance. He'd seen the set from the start, and said 'She even played some Gary Glitter earlier. I said 'Doesn't she know'? *Gary Glitter is currently banged up in a foreign jail for child abuse activities. He said:: 'Probably not, but maybe the kids might like it'. Then that look that I recognise came on his face. Yes I'd suspected for many years that he was another toy for the perp that abused me. He lived near the railway station enroute to the quarry when he was a kid. I just new. One day I'll ask, but I know the answer.

I believe that I have done well in my life, career and friends wise, but relationships - I don't think it will ever happen now. When you have spent decades telling yourself that you are substandard, that there is something wrong with you, it is very difficult to change that on a subconscious level, no matter what you tell yourself consciously. I would have been the best dad ever, but that bastard denied me the chance.

Whether we are the 1:6, 1:2, 1:10, 1:100, we need to have the best life we can, that way we win!

I'm not going to be the pot head, the alcoholic (though I like a drink), nor am I going to lie down in the snow. I hope that I have another 50 years left, that way I can make up for some of the time that was stolen from me. Maybe I can also do some of the living, that others cannot!

Best wishes ...Rik

_________________________
*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

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#190742 - 11/10/07 06:34 AM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
kayak Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/01/06
Posts: 22
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Good post, RoadRunner.

I remember hearing of a clergy sex abuse victim whose suicide threshold was crossed by just one incident of abuse. As a young fella of about 9, the priest took him to get ice cream and while he sat in the front seat of the car and ate it, the priest leaned over and performed oral sex on him. What he remembered most was the melting ice cream running down his forearm as he sat there frozen in horror and disbelief.

He took his life in his late teens, unable to deal with the consequences of just one incidence of sexual abuse.

Compare that to others who endure far more physically invasive and humiliating abuse that goes on for years, yet function in various degrees of competence and never decide to take their lives. And, I wonder how many of those that take their lives, regret doing it in those few seconds of transition from life to death?

Each of us is unique and EVERY life is precious in His sight.

As a clergy abuse survivor of "reverend" james hanley (capital letters specifically excluded as he deserves no honor or respect) from Mendham, NJ, I know and love Lou and Pat Serrano. Mark, their son, who spearheaded the effort to get many of hanley's victims together annually for weekends of recovery, single-handedly jump-started many journeys towards recovery. Were it not for him helping us all realize we were NOT ALONE, some of us may have never connected the dots between our abuse and our lifestyle, etc.

One person CAN make a difference, and collectively we are stronger for speaking up. Each of us here need one another. Each individual strengthens the group; the group in turn empowers individuals. Together, we heal.

Another MS member's signature says it well: I hate that I am here, but I am glad there is a "here" here.

Back to the numbers: I saw a group picture of St. Joseph's 8th grade basketball team; the main hunting grounds for hanley, the perpetrator. Out of about 15 youths pictured (which represented just about all of the catholic school's 8th grade class) it was determined that probably every one of those young men had been abused by hanley at one time or another; many of them for several years. Only about 6 had the courage to come forward as adults and admit it; many of the others steadfastly refused. One of the six committed suicide in front of a train several years later.

Wickedness and sin abound; I thank God for the Doctors and Board Members who spearhead MaleSurvivor (many of which are survivors also) and for each of you, my fellow 'ground troops', as we fight the good fight.

kayak


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#190846 - 11/10/07 10:20 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: RICK57]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Rik,

Originally Posted By: RICK57
I feel guilty that I did not speak up sooner, but I counteract that by knowing that I spoke up first, opening the door for others to do the same.


I know this isn't easy, but I would urge you to let the first part of the sentence go and hold onto the second part.

The key point, I think, is something that Mike Lew says in Victims No Longer. To guys who feel guilty because they did not speak up sooner, or disclose sooner, or do whatever sooner, he replies that "You did it at the very first second it was possible for you", or words to that effect.

If you look back at your own situation, try to honor the progress you were making and each step you were taking before you outed the abuser. All that earlier stuff was part of what made it possible for you to take the decisive step on that fateful day. It was part of the solid foundation you absolutely had to have before you could act. I really do think Mike is right.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

Top
#191167 - 11/12/07 03:49 PM Re: Putting faces to the numbers [Re: roadrunner]
RICK57 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Loc: ENGLAND
Thanks Larry - I know what you tell me, and I know that you are right.

It just kicks in sometimes, particularly when I see the alcoholic. Also when I think that the other 2 witnesses that came forward had been younger chidhoodfriends, and I feel like I let them down, even though they didn't blame me.

I also find it sort of hard to accept that I've actually achieved a decent career even though I have always had a low opinion of myself until the last few years.

I am still shocked at what happened to me as a young boy, but I am equally shocked that I've not done too bad. It's just trying to get the perspective right.

Best wishes ...Rik

_________________________
*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

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