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#426592 - 02/26/13 05:49 PM What's Next?
unwritten Offline


Registered: 04/22/12
Posts: 19
I joined this forum last year seeking help for then 17 (now 18) year-old son, and would like some guidance from those of you who have worked through the process of counseling.

My son has seen well over twenty counselors, some of which were in a group home he lived in for seven months.

His 25 yo sister moved back home at Christmas, and she has become his unofficial counselor because he has found that he has been able to talk more comfortably with her than he has with anyone else. They have also gone together to see his individual counselor as well, and he told her that she had a gift for counseling.

He has made progress talking to his sister, which included him finally accepting the fact that having been sexually abused has impacted his life. This is a huge milestone because, before his sister began talking with him he absolutely insisted that it was not been the source of any of his problems.

Now that they have reached this point, they seem to have hit a wall. They saw his individual counselor again to see what the next step in the process should be, and it sounds as though he was less than helpful. Apparently he told them that he needed to forgive his abuser. I think (hope) that he might have meant that as an eventual goal, but the information they were seeking is what is the process that will help him to heal.

Could some of you share how you approached this and what was most helpful for you?

Here's a link to our story: Peer Abuse

(edited because I originally linked to a different post than I intended to - Please scroll down to the 6th post)

Thanks for any help you can give.

Unwritten


Edited by unwritten (02/26/13 07:55 PM)
_________________________
Today I will be as happy as a bird with a french fry.

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#426593 - 02/26/13 06:02 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
cant_remember Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 1039
Hello Unwritten,

Your son is very lucky to have a supportive family that understands. Has he tried EMDR therapy to try to break through his PTSD symptoms?

Is he still cutting himself?

Has he joined MS as a member here? If not, why not? And maybe you could re-visit the issue with him?

Cant
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Recovery is possible. Hang in there, brothers.

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#426603 - 02/26/13 07:43 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
unwritten Offline


Registered: 04/22/12
Posts: 19
Hi Can't...thanks for responding.

I'm not familiar with EMDR therapy, but I'll read up on it tonight.

We'd hoped the cutting was a thing of the past, but he did resort to it last week. It was much more superficial than before - more like scratching or grazing that should heal without scarring and he now regrets it.

He says he is getting ready to join here - He has said that he would before and had procrastinated but tells me now that he has written something for his first post, so I'm crossing my fingers that he'll follow up. I have had him read the other two threads that I've posted.
_________________________
Today I will be as happy as a bird with a french fry.

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#426625 - 02/26/13 11:24 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
cant_remember Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 1039
OK,

2 things;

1) Suggest that he keep a rubber band around his wrist and to snap it instead of cutting or scratching.

2) Have him send me a message when he signs up if he would like someone to help ease him into this stage of his recovery.

all best,

Cant
_________________________
Recovery is possible. Hang in there, brothers.

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#426632 - 02/27/13 12:38 AM Re: What's Next? [Re: cant_remember]
crazy gecko Offline


Registered: 10/04/12
Posts: 309
Originally Posted By: cant_remember
1) Suggest that he keep a rubber band around his wrist and to snap it instead of cutting or scratching.

I second this. I sounds silly, but it works like a charm...
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I guess what I'm trying to say
Is whose life is it anyway because livin'
Living is the best revenge
You can play
-- Def Leppard

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#426666 - 02/27/13 09:49 AM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
Wife - Survivor Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 38
Loc: PA
I wish you & your family all the Best in this process. I can only comment on the Forgiveness thing. I have been in recovery for CSA for 5 years & all is going quite well BUT forgiveness has not happened for me. I am surprised that has been brought up when your son is still struggling w/some immediate issues. For me I am riding on "maybe some animals do not deserve my forgiveness". I add to that, that if God has forgiven a 'repentant' animal, then I will. Forgiveness works for some but there are too many other issues I have had to put 1st, for me. Maybe that comes later..... Just my experience/thoughts. God Bless you all.
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Everyone DESERVES Recovery, IF they WANT it.
Anything worth it, takes mucho Time & Willingness.

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#426667 - 02/27/13 10:27 AM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
Candu Offline


Registered: 06/30/12
Posts: 312
Loc: Canada
From what I have read forgiveness is not a requirement for adequate healing. And putting an emphasis on forgiveness can be counter productive. If forgiveness happens it will be from the survivor on their own time. You can't push forgiveness.

I think a push in that directions is a mistake but I know nothing about the actual situation. My opinion on it is just opinion based on my feelings and not based on what is going on with him.


What About Forgiveness? I found this while doing a search on forgiveness after the OP's post. I'm sure there is better information out there on the subject. But I thought this was worth reading.

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#426672 - 02/27/13 12:26 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
unwritten Offline


Registered: 04/22/12
Posts: 19
Can't -

My son and I talked more about this site last night, and the plan is for him to join this evening. I will definitely ask him to contact you, and I deeply appreciate you're willingness to reach out to him.

We have been trying to prevent him from being online, which may seem odd because he is 18, but he has an obsession with much older men - like over 40 - and has been 'meeting' them on dating site. He has had several that he has talked to over the last few months, and actually met up with two (that I know of) in person, but none of them have turned out to be the kind of people he'd hoped to meet.

As adults, I know we all are aware of the motives behind people this age who appear interested in someone as young as he is, but he has been unable to see that these are not good people, and he has been hurt by these encounters. So to try to protect him from the temptation of venturing to other sites, his sister is going to help him get started here.

Wife & Candu, I agree with you about the forgiveness part...While it may, eventually, be healing to forgive an abuser, to do so too early makes it about them and not about the victim.

To all of you, thanks for your responses.
_________________________
Today I will be as happy as a bird with a french fry.

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#426676 - 02/27/13 01:04 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
I'm in awe your son has this kind of support.

I'll echo Candu on the forgiveness issue. When/if it comes, that's waaaay down the road, imo. I've never forgiven my deceased abuser, nor do I have any inclination in that direction. The parents whose abusiveness set me up for the perp - though I now completely understand the dynamic, family history, etc. - there's no forgiveness for them, either.

Sometimes, too, there's a point when the current therapist has outlived his/her usefulness. That's fine. Your son needs to understand he's under no obligation to this therapist. His recovery is about HIM, not the therapist. It's about the healthiest selfishness I can imagine.

One suggestion I'd make may be hard for you to hear as a parent in this circumstance. But it's made a considerable difference in my progress. That's anonymity. As an 18-year-old, I'd have a hard time being frank if I knew a parent was looking over my shoulder at what I'd posted. His location, DOB, etc., are not things that are required on MS and, for now, I'd discourage him from providing that or any identifying information online. I'd even go so far as to tell him not to supply you with his MS online handle.

Alternatively, he should know that PMs are another option if he has heavy stuff with which he's dealing.

That said, I don't know your exact situation and I recognize that cutting is an issue. Obviously, though he's reached majority, it's your call.

Well done...and I like the French fry quote!

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#426678 - 02/27/13 01:13 PM Re: What's Next? [Re: unwritten]
cant_remember Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 1039
OK,

Not to get too deep into this because at a certain point, an adult son's sexuality is not his mother's business... However, I will share with you that it could be the case that the abuse has affected your son's arousal template.

Which is to say: that thing he has for older men? It might never go away. I appreciate your concerns for him and your desire to protect him, and certainly there are a few of us here who could have benefitted from a mother who knew what we were up to at 18...

However, there's a downside to this as well. You don't want him thinking you are helicoptering over him and interfering with his life, even though you have the best intentions.

Edit: To follow up on Lancer's post above: it is critical for him to know that you won't be reading his posts here. Tell him that you come to the Friends&Family forum to post and that you don't look at other forums or other posts, and then follow through with it. Like Lancer said, you should not know what your son's user name is here. If he thinks his posts are getting read, he will self-censor himself and dilute his recovery.

Cant


Edited by cant_remember (02/27/13 01:17 PM)
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