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#291695 - 06/15/09 11:06 AM help for my brother...
lil'sis Offline


Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 20
Loc: Texas
This past weekend was supposed to be a time for family reunion. BBQ and good times. But Sunday morning it all changed. I come from a large Southern Christian family. My father is a minister and my mother, is his wife. I am the youngest of 8. My brother , who is # 3 on the sibling list, has always been a wild child, every family has one. You know, the kid who is always very popular, very well liked, talented, but never really amounts to anything? Gets in to trouble (drinking, ditching school). He never finished college, he wanted a career in the military, but was discharged early (health reasons), always drank like a fish, is divorced from his ex-wife for more than 10 years and is still in love with her, and has had a string of bad relationships. The list goes on and on. The last few years, he has been on anti-depressants and anit-anxiety medicines as well as taking pain meds because of a degenerative condition that affects his back. According to my brother he has had many near-death experiences, some of them I know about but he is still here. He has also tried to kill himself. He once took many, many painkillers and mixed with lots of liquor. He was found by the police laying in street unconscious. He woke up four days later in the hospital. I always wondered what in the hell happened to him? But Sunday morning this man, was a blubbering mess on my kitchen floor. I sat there and listened to him as he told me the most unthinkable story. He told me that our dad molested him when he was a kid, around 9 years old and that it went on until he was about 16. He had nightmares about it, but he thought that was all it was, nightmares; that is until he started remembering things on his own. My brother could always tell a "tall tale" but nothing like this. I should have been in shock, I should have called him a liar or told him that he was wrong, it must have been a mistake or a bad dream, but I know he wasn't lying. I believe him! I am 34 years old and I have no recollection of any kind of my father doing anything inappropriate to me. My brother is nearly 16 years older than me, so I wouldn't know about a lot of things he went through, but somethings do come into memory... all the negativity in his life, his messed up perceptions of what a man should be, all stem for this event. I sat on the kitchen floor with him as he told me this and I let him cry and I held his hand. I knew that my dad had some pretty messed up views, but I always thought it was a generational thing. And my brother told me that dad had confessed to him that he had also been raped as a child by a stranger. I have heard that many victims, become "perpetrators" but why? Why would he do this to his own little boy? My dad...why? There is also the possibility that he did this to my nephew, his little grandson, who is now 20. How do i help my brother?


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#291697 - 06/15/09 11:22 AM Re: help for my brother... [Re: lil'sis]
cstjude Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/04/08
Posts: 302
Loc: Canada
Sis,

I am so sorry that your brother is in such pain. The men here will have important insights for you. I can only say that his disclosure to you means that he trusts you beyond measure. Your response was reassuring and - most importantly - you believed him. I hope he chooses to undergo therapy and to reclaim his life. Recovery is possible. He will need deep support, patience, kindness, and encouragement to pursue recovery.

How do you help him? You listen and don't judge. You don't try to fix it for him. You educate yourself on male survivors' issues. Help him be ready for therapy by providing a safe place for him to vent, cry, shake, rage. Don't be frightened off by the intensity of these emoational seismic events. Help him find a male CSA survivor therapist and offer to go with him if he needs support. Sometimes these disclosures come as such a shock to the family that they simply go "blind" to it. You chose to look at it with him. That tells me you are both very courageous. He has taken an enormous first step and so have you.

C.

_________________________
C.
Female, Friends & Family Forum Fan

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#291701 - 06/15/09 11:41 AM Re: help for my brother... [Re: cstjude]
lil'sis Offline


Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 20
Loc: Texas
Thank you so much for your show of support. I welcome any advice that I can get.


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#291704 - 06/15/09 11:52 AM Re: help for my brother... [Re: cstjude]
Shadow+Walker Offline


Registered: 04/16/09
Posts: 287
Loc: desolate foggy nights, USA
lil'sis,

I would like to second what cstjude said.

1) You are pulling double duty here, you yourself are very likely in shock and being called upon to offer support for your brother. Definitely acquire the assistance of a counselor for your brother. Consider counseling for yourself also because as you hear his story and travel this journey of healing with him, what you will be exposed to can affect you also (counselors call it secondary victimization).

2) Get the book "Victims No Longer" by Mike Lew. I was struggling with along with my own recovery when this book was first published and it was such an important element in my healing process.

3) I think your response was most appropriate and kind. In spite of how you felt, the natural hurdles of denial and the shock, you did fine.

Peace,
Shadow+Walker

_________________________
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, love and self discipline. (St Paul, 2Timothy 1:7) NIV

Check out a cool song by a hot band..."Unbreakable" by Fireflight: official video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pWRJAHaOrYg

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#291705 - 06/15/09 12:10 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: Shadow+Walker]
lil'sis Offline


Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 20
Loc: Texas
Thank you...
The entire time my brother talked, all I could think was who else did our father do this to? One of my older sister's lived at home for a while after her divorce and brought her baby boy home with her. I was just 14 yrs. old at the time and my nephew is like a son to me also. Did he hurt him, too? Another thing that really gets me is that I had no problem believeing this about my father. I don't understand my own way of processing this info...I am really sad for my brother and angry. My fater is in his late 70s now and is a broken, crippled, nearly blind old man, very frail...but still has a very commanding presence and "control" over us all...I swear this is like a freaking movie or something...I have known a few people who had been victimized like this, and always thought, thank God my family isn't like this...jeez...I am at a complete loss...I have already contacted a counselor...


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#291706 - 06/15/09 12:13 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: Shadow+Walker]
JustScott Offline
Greeter Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2572
Your belief in him and desire to help is awesome! You're in the right place, and if he's open to it, getting him here can be the 2nd step in his recovery (The first was breaking the silence and telling you, A HUGE step it was!).

Quote:
I have heard that many victims, become "perpetrators"

I just want to comment on this. I know this is the common conception out there, BUT is it a misconception. Everything I've learned since coming here and reading good books on the subject actually put the number of those that go on to do what was done to them as actually being VERY VERY low. Once place I read put the number at 1% or less when compared to the number of Victims out there.


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#291707 - 06/15/09 12:15 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: JustScott]
lil'sis Offline


Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 20
Loc: Texas
wow...looks like i have a lot of reading to do! thanks, JustScott.


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#291711 - 06/15/09 01:11 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: lil'sis]
seeker43 Offline


Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 34
Loc: jalisco, mexico
Hi lil`sis - I would like to thank you on behalf of all of us who found little or no support from our siblings when we told what happened. This happened to me and I`m afraid I still haven`t forgiven my sister. It was the first, the deepest, darkest time I confronted my abuse and pretty much all she had to think of was herself, how she felt left out from all the attention my uncle had given me. I applaud you for thinking first of your brother in his time of need. It will be a difficult time for you and yours, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel for your brother and yourself. Scott


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#291712 - 06/15/09 01:19 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: seeker43]
lil'sis Offline


Registered: 06/15/09
Posts: 20
Loc: Texas
Thank you...I hope that you find the peace you deserve.
My brother tried to tell my sister who lived at home with us after her divorce. She brought her baby boy home with her and she stayed until he was 6 years old, and the he spent summers with my folks. I don't know how much he told her (in confidence), but she in turn, called my mother. When my brother called to speak to my mother, she put father on the phone and he asked my brother what ever did he do to hurt him as a child? Seriously...i just don't know anything anymore...


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#291717 - 06/15/09 02:25 PM Re: help for my brother... [Re: lil'sis]
cstjude Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/04/08
Posts: 302
Loc: Canada
Sis,

I understand the disorientation of "I just don't know anything anymore...". And I understand what I call the "exploding set of consequences" thinking that leads you to wonder if there were others who were hurt and are awed into silence by a controlling parent and the "family fiction" that everything is alright.

There are dark days ahead of you both. But ultimately there is every reason to hope that he can achieve recovery. The disorientation will pass, you will regain your equilibrium, and you will find the stregnth to help your brother.

At this stage, it's ok not to know anything. You've had your whole view of your family and your personal history (as well as your brother's) turned upside down. This will take some time to process.

C.

_________________________
C.
Female, Friends & Family Forum Fan

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