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#44149 - 06/23/03 06:54 PM Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
I started reading "The Courage To Change Workbook" by Laura Davis today. I feel trapped. I got to the first page of section one, where it says

Quote:
Over the years, I've come to realize that healing is, in fact, a process that takes a lifetime. As survivors, we need to settle in for the long haul. It's a process that continues for the rest of our lives.
I feel trapped between the memories that I can't ignore anymore, and the idea that I'm in this for life.

OK, I'm not despondent or suicidal or anything like that. I had a good day today with my family. This point blank "rest of our lives" stuff makes me wish there were some other way. I want my magic pill!

This isn't more talk about recovery or getting anything back. This is facing up to the fact that I will never be done with this. It's not so much what the bastard took as what he did that I can't undo. Ever.

I think I feel sad about this. Gee, how perceptive of me. I can actually think I have some clue what I feel.

This post is going nowhere in a big hurry. I'm lazy, and I have a lot of work in front of me. That's the bottom line, that's why I'm whining.

I tell myself, "Look on the bright side. This means that things will get better and better for the rest of my life." Somehow, that's a pretty cold comfort at the moment (besides being overly naive). There's this sense that something enormous is.... missing? gone? I don't know. There's just a sense that continually getting better doesn't make up for whatever it is that's bothering me so much about that idea, "process that takes a lifetime." Maybe I had other plans for a lifetime. I only get one, and maybe I didn't want to spend it numbing, acting out, and recovering from sexual abuse. And maybe it doesn't make a damn bit of difference what I wanted.

Usually I would keep something like this on my hard drive but I haven't found a male survivor group yet. The literature for the 12 step groups talks about taking stuff that's too much for group meetings to your sponsor. I know it works for a lot of other people, but I don't have a sponsor for any 12 Step group. Last time didn't work out real well for me, so you guys here get to be my "sponsor." Or not, I just need to vent.

Dammit, the "unfairness" is killing me today. Here's my sense of injustice in the definition of abuse. It was wrong; I didn't deserve it; and that knowledge and $1.00 will get me another cup of coffee.

Not really as down as he writes,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44150 - 06/23/03 08:13 PM Re: Trapped
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Joe
it might sound cruel to say "wake up and smell the coffee" but- I agree with Laura Davies.

Well for the most part I do, I can't see it ever going away. There's no way we can force ourselves to forget, god knows I've tried for long enough.
So the memories will remain with me.

And that's not a fun thought, but I can control, regulate maybe, and assign the right amount of importance to those memories.
And so far I have done a lot of that, and surprising as it might seem with my being here, and at the charity I help at, my memories rarely surface and don't bother me that much when they do.

I control them now, I reach back and take what I want from them. Which is 'my experience' when I come here and share it like I am with you. I can dip into my past and use it as I want.
And I think that if I wasn't involved with helping other survivors my memories would be fairly dormant. They certainly are when I'm at work or off in my 4x4 at the weekends.

So don't despair at having to take the memories along with you, they're a part of you anyway. They make you what you are in some small part.
And as you sort through them, give them the low priority they deserve, learn from them - and we can do that, then they won't bother you half as much as you fear.

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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#44151 - 06/23/03 09:44 PM Re: Trapped
Marc Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Tucson, AZ
Joe and Dave,

I do not agree with that old hag!

\:D Just kidding about the old hag thing. I don't even know who she is!

Here is the formula that I offered another survivor the other day regarding the healing process...

A - B = C + D = E

Wherein:

A = Age you began to 'deal' with the abuse
B = Actual age abuse started
C = Difference between A & B
D = Difference between A & B
E = Sum of C & D

(C = Years needed to unlearn incorrectly built thinking)

(D = Number of years to learn, 'but correctly')

In My case...

38 - 7 = 31 + 31 = 62

Sad, Frustrating? Aggravating?

I believe shortcuts in time can be made through 'proper' therapy technique (I'm watching you Tom S, ya do have some very valid points but not all therapists are the same. ;\) ) However exact standards are difficult to measure. Additionally, this does not take into account any time or effort between the time that you start the healing/corrective thought and the moment of completion of work through.

These are the lessons that we've been tasked to learn through our own choices or the choices of others. All of which may be concurrent or consecutive as the participant is capable.


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#44152 - 06/23/03 10:02 PM Re: Trapped
Ivanhoe Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/19/03
Posts: 1907
Boy, here's a string that hits me square in the nose.

How old are you now, Dave?--I call myself Dave when I talk to myself, all others, please call me David. Just turned 63. Oh, my God. What are you going to tell these guys? That you're 63 and you still need therapy?
Hey, I'll answer that, I'll finish this tonight.

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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#44153 - 06/23/03 10:24 PM Re: Trapped
andrew-almost52 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/31/02
Posts: 243
Loc: canada
SA is just one event(s) that can preoccupy a persons thoughts. Absolutely everyone is working on issues all their lives, not necessarily SA issues but nevertheless issues. All of us, SA survivors or not, we should all be working on becoming better human beings, better adjusted, kinder, gentler, brighter, healthier, the list goes on...... and it is a lifetime project! So grow up. Peace, Andrew


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#44154 - 06/23/03 10:42 PM Re: Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Dave, Marc, David,

I felt a need to vent, I guess. I have read so much about this stuff. I browsed and surfed, here, Usenet, jimhopper.com, and on and on. I tracked down SIA and cross two counties to get there once a week. Then I read in the workbook that she (Laura Davis) had the misconception that if she healed intensely she would cross the finish line sooner. I laughed out loud, 'cause I knew I thought that way, too. And I knew that that's silly, that I have to just keep going "for the duration."

But I kept reading, and when I read the part I quoted above, I caught my breath. It never hit home like it did this afternoon. That surreal moment when it began in the "judo lesson" didn't define me and my life, but it altered both irrevocably.

Dave, I saw in the other thread about how your parents didn't provide the information and kind of protection you needed earlier. My parents were neglectful, due to their own dysfunctions (which seem to have come from the expected sources, their parents, as I hear in the family histories now). I was set up for the SA in part because of that neglect. So I think that the atmosphere and conditions that make us targets of perps are abusive.

Marc, I hope there is some formula that will play itself out as I go along. Let's see,

42 - 16 = 26
26 + 26 = 52
52 + 42 = 94 years to go + current age

If I live to see 94 \:\) I'll let you know how I turned out. I'll move my eye, or something energetic like that.

Seriously, I think I always knew that it's a lifetime hitch. But I knew that the way I know Columbus sailed with 3 ships. Today I think I began to know it the way I knew she would be my wife the first time I saw my wife. I know it inside. I know it for real.

And I don't like it, but I do have to "smell the coffee."

David,

I enjoy reading and learning from your words, so I hope I haven't preempted your follow up post. I need to get some sleep, and I wanted to reply to the other guys while the thoughts were fresh.

And to all a good night.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44155 - 06/23/03 10:52 PM Re: Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Andrew,

On my way out and I saw your post.

You're right. It's a matter of facing the fact that I have to grow up, and part of my growth is to grow through and beyond this.

I just felt overwhelmed by the sense of unfairness today. Why did I think life is fair? I didn't, but that didn't make the "feeling" any less unpleasant.

Somehow, the kinds of things that I've read about became a little more real today. It's really possible for one moment to be so damn....damnable! And to actually be applicable to me, here, inside my chest and behind my eyes.

At any rate, I do not feel anywhere near as bad as it sounds when I re-read this stuff. I'm very lucky, no, I'm blessed to have the family that I do and to have found this place. Better, I found the guys who make this place what it is.

Thanks again,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44156 - 06/23/03 11:28 PM Re: Trapped
dwf Offline
Moderator/BoD Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/24/03
Posts: 1223
Loc: Austin, Texas USA
Joe,

Maybe you'll see this in the morning during your first cup of coffee. ;\)

I really understand the need to let out these feelings of frustration and exhaustion.

You are doing the right thing with that stuff and in the right place too.

I guess my only piece of 'advice' is so trite that it must be true:

You do not have to do this for the rest of your life.

You only have to live it for today, right now.

Tomorrow is too much for any of us to bear; that's why it's never there when we get to it.

Focus on today. Have a good cry for the guy that got molested--I'll cry for him too.

Goddamn it, this shit just isn't right!

But it happened. And just for today, we have each other to help us get through.

If one day at a time is too much, as it is for me sometimes, then just take it one hour at a time, or one post at a time, or in your special case,

one cup of coffee at a time. \:D

You're a good man, Joe. I'm sorry it hurts you so much. I feel very honored that you let me know that. I've always wanted to know men like you, and now I do thanks to this place.

Your friend and brother,

_________________________
"Poke salad Annie, 'gators got you granny
Everybody said it was a shame
'Cause her mama was aworkin' on the chain-gang"

-Tony Joe White

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#44157 - 06/24/03 03:05 AM Re: Trapped
andrew-almost52 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/31/02
Posts: 243
Loc: canada
Joe, you write with such elegance. I think we all get bitten by the 'what ifs' now and again, part of the struggle of growing up gracefully. You mention your family with such love and fondness, they are your legacy, your validation that you have indeed reached many milestones during your road of self discovery and clarity.

I have often wondered what I would have been like had I not experienced the challenges brought about by my SA. I have concluded that I would have quite likely been dramatically different than I am today. I probably wouldn't have met the lovely lady I married, nor would our children have been born. So although I am not thankful for having been sexually abused, I am aware that as my life unfolds, the SA was just one of the events that led to me being me, much like losing my best friend in a car accident or being adopted .... something that just happened, something I had no control over. I think a big part of 'recovery' is not allowing the SA to have too long a shelf life. One knows it happened, gets help if necessary, does what one can to safeguard others if possible, and then moves on. In my humble opinion, the worst thing an SA survivor can do is give the SA experience an importance it doesn't deserve by attributing to it all future failings and fallibilities. Doing this breathes life in the SA, reopening the wound continually. It is also, in my opinion, a total cop out ... an excuse, and a very convenient one. Peace, Andrew


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#44158 - 06/24/03 09:40 AM Re: Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Quote:
You do not have to do this for the rest of your life.

You only have to live it for today, right now.
That's so true. I was talking to myself in traffic this morning, and I asked, "How can I do this?" The answer came back, "One day at a time."

I try to pace myself. I really do. I have a daily Al Anon reader, "Hope for Today," with shares from adult children. I deliberately refuse to read the listing for any date before its time. I'll absorb no wisdom before its time. :p I mentioned that in a meeting, and some folks said, "There are no rules, read what you want." I replied, "I know myself, and without this kind of discipline, I'll sit down one night and read cover to cover. I'll say to myself, 'Got it,' as I slap the book on the table."

Laura Davis mentions that kind of attitude, too. Again I am amazed at the similiarities between male and female surviviors. There must be something in abuse itself (which we should capture for the definition) which assaults our humanity, without regard for race, gender, sexual orientation, etc.

Quote:
Have a good cry for the guy that got molested--I'll cry for him too.
I have a feeling that's coming, and soon. I still have not been able to cry. I seem to be getting closer and closer, week by week.

I'm not looking forward to it except that it will mean I have recognized that boy and his pain are worthy of tears. One of the survivor quotes in "Leaping Upon the Mountains" really sticks with me. Ismail, in Malaysia, said, "Have no shame for your tears. You have the right to them. You have earned them."


Quote:
I think a big part of 'recovery' is not allowing the SA to have too long a shelf life. One knows it happened, gets help if necessary, does what one can to safeguard others if possible, and then moves on.
I like that idea. Moving on to me would be enjoying what my life does have. If I don't try to recover, get "better" for that, then why do I try? I know that the "payoff" is a better life, so why not start living the better life as best I can as soon as I can?

Quote:
In my humble opinion, the worst thing an SA survivor can do is give the SA experience an importance it doesn't deserve by attributing to it all future failings and fallibilities. Doing this breathes life in the SA, reopening the wound continually.
This is so correct, if I may share your humble opinion.

Hiding the wounds where they could fester for so long, we do need..... "Earth to Joe, don't speak for the world" I do need to open it enough to clean it out and address it properly. Then it can heal properly. But I don't need to keep it open, never letting it heal at all.

Quote:
Hey, I'll answer that, I'll finish this tonight.
David,

Please chip in. You have a good way of talking sense.

Thanks guys, it took a full cup to get through this \:D

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44159 - 06/24/03 11:25 AM Re: Trapped
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
quote: "I do not agree with that old hag!"

Marc: Cute, but I wonder what she and Bass have to say about us! The text is good, and far better than nothing at all, and I feel like should be used in group settings. Women are able to do this, because they are recognized as being victims, but men like the fellow who started this message have to go it alone and be dependant on a faceless computer message board. The hardest part of the text is trying to make a buddy list and phone #'s of people who actually give a damn to call when in crisis.
I don't know these gals either, so I can't argue the hag thing, but I can't figure out why there is not a man smart enough to write something like this?

quote:"I believe shortcuts in time can be made through 'proper' therapy technique (I'm watching you Tom S, ya do have some very valid points but not all therapists are the same. ;\) ) However exact standards are difficult to measure."

Marc; I am truly surprised to find someone not asleep at the wheel and actually paying atttention! I know I got the attention of another member 'Sleepy from Arizona' the other day, and it made my week to see I have actually made somebody in the profession self examine and at least elicit a response, regardless of how ridicoulous it might be.
Now run these numbers through your head: 0 - 47 x 2 = 94. [is that how it works, or is it even longer] I should live so long, let alone recieve ANY sort of safe constructive therapy or counsleing that does not victimize me further. I am angry as h-l because I have premiums paid up on the best health care insurance in the state of Tn., not Medicaid or Tn Care, but BC/BS and I can not recieve counseling let alone any sort of therapy or one damn thing, because the profession has gouged the insurance carriers at the rate of $90 to $125 per 45 min. hr. for too many years and now they refuse to pay them on their own in house referrals and recommendations. And what title 6 programs left are a sham, full of letchers and abusers.
The present PhD counselor I have seen was assigned to me on a 4 session EAP contract type referral, and agreed to bill the carrier, and continue to see me. That was 7 mo ago, and he has yet to be paid one damn dime! And ethically, if I walk in and offer any money to him, it leaves him unable to bill, and liable. He cannot refuse to see me or dump me, but there have been times when he conviently had emergencies or soemone else unexpectedly show up on my appointment time which has not changed since I started and get confused, leaving me sitting in the waiting room never seen. And this has occured once four weeks in succession. But I remain in charge, and I live to see their frustration!
I wouldn't mind the opportunity to choose a trained and dedicated person vested in doing what they are sworn to do, like some of you guys here, but all I get is a bunch of d-a's who ask me a 'reduced rate of $95', and expect me to continue to pay my premiums! I hope they have some means other than the mental health profession to support themselves with in the near future, because they are going to be like the legal ambulance chasing profession and be unable to find enough people with money to keep their life style up with.
One last thing, is there a website where women as well as men survivors go to write? I would like a female perspective for a change.
Now for my quote: 'In this time of economic uncertainty, it's easy to see who is dedicated to providing health care, and who is chasing bucks.'
Have a nice day, and sincerely, thanx for listening Marc. Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#44160 - 06/24/03 01:48 PM Re: Trapped
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Quote:
Over the years, I've come to realize that healing is, in fact, a process that takes a lifetime. As survivors, we need to settle in for the long haul. It's a process that continues for the rest of our lives.
Agreed, but it doesn't just apply to healing from SA. There are any number of things that we and that all human beings have to heal, or recover, from. My preference is to say that recovery is a process that takes a lifetime. A process of recovery from SA or anything
else that has disrupted our being our true selves;
a process of recovery to that true self. Which does indeed involve a lifetime, but if we focus on the to that's not such a bad thing IMHO.

Quote:
Marc: Cute, but I wonder what she and Bass have to say about us! The text is good, and far better than nothing at all, and I feel like should be used in group settings. Women are able to do this, because they are recognized as being victims, but men like the fellow who started this message have to go it alone and be dependant on a faceless computer message board. The hardest part of the text is trying to make a buddy list and phone #'s of people who actually give a damn to call when in crisis.
Tom, what you're saying speaks to what we're trying to change here at MS.

Quote:
I don't know these gals either, so I can't argue the hag thing, but I can't figure out why there is not a man smart enough to write something like this?
Maybe there is. Check out the MS bookstore for stuff like this:

The Wounded Heart & The Wounded Heart Workbook by Dan Allender

Victims No Longer and Leaping Upon the Mountains by Mike Lew

Abused Boys by Mic Hunter

Speaking Our Truth by Neil King & Thomas Moore

Male Survivors by Timothy L. Sanders

Betrayed As Boys by Richard Gartner

That's just for starters...

Quote:
One last thing, is there a website where women as well as men survivors go to write? I would like a female perspective for a change.
Tom, there are myriads of survivor sites that are for both women & men. However from what I've seen most of them end up having only or almost only women becuz they get into too much man-bashing. Some don't even allow men.

If I were going to recommend one, it would be Kristen's Place at pub27.ezboard.com/bnewhopehealinginstitutesupportforum

Vic

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

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#44161 - 06/24/03 11:27 PM Re: Trapped
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
Thanx Vic, but I believe I better pass on Kristen. Don't know her either. I'll surf first chance I get.
Now about the books; is there a text and workbook like Courage To Heal designed soley for men? I have a pretty limited budget.
Thanx Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#44162 - 06/25/03 12:01 AM Re: Trapped
Wuamei Offline
Member

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

A workbook designed solely for male survivors? The only one I can find offhand is "Male Survivors: 12-Step Recovery Program for Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse" by Timothy L. Sanders. I have it and have used it; great if you can work with the 12 steps. You can get it thru the MS bookstore at Amazon, used, for as low as $3.50 as of right now.

BTW happy surfing!

Victor

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

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#44163 - 06/25/03 09:42 AM Re: Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Tom,

It's not formatted as a workbook with places to write, but every section in Mic Hunter's book has a set of questions to ask yourself. If you kept your answers in a tablet, it'd almost be "workbook-ish."

And "The Courage to Heal" seems really good to me. I understand that there was a lack of material for guys, and the stuff written for women had a lot of negative portrayals of men at one time. But the latest edition of the workbook (the version I have) is written for both men and women. In the introduction is the story of Mike Lew talking with a man who "was afraid to buy the book (original 'Courage to Heal,' not the workbook) because it said, 'For Women Survivors...' on the cover." Mike Lew regularly advises men, "Change the pronouns. Women have been doing it for decades."

If you get a chance to look at the books in a library, you might be able to decide better which you want for yourself. But don't discount some of the recent stuff written for both men and women. I've heard parts of my life story in women's words at SIA meetings. We're more alike than different, IMPE.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44164 - 06/25/03 10:05 AM Re: Trapped
jwh Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/18/01
Posts: 98
Loc: dallas, tx
Mike Lew's "Victims No More" has been extremely helpful to me, and I would say that "The Courage to Heal" has been just as helpful--they go together very well. In the latest edition of "The Courage to Heal" Ellen Bass mentions in her intro that, if she and Laura could change the original book, they would have made the book for male survivors as well. Unfortunately, in the late 70s, most male survivors did not feel comfortable enough to admit that they were sexually abused. Seriously, though, one can read most of "The Courage to Heal" and simply substitute "man" for "woman."

Jeff

_________________________
"I've been waiting for a guide to come and take me by the hand... Could these sensations make me feel the pleasures of a normal man?"--Ian Curtis, Joy Division

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#44165 - 06/25/03 05:20 PM Re: Trapped
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
_____________________________________
But don't discount some of the recent stuff written for both men and women. I've heard parts of my life story in women's words at SIA meetings. We're more alike than different, IMPE.
Thanks,
Joe [/QB][/QUOTE
_____________________________________

I am not going to disagree with your logic Joe, but why is it I can't go to a SIA meeting or be seen by someone who will recognize me as a survivor like women or any other citizen?
Why do people embrace an abused woman at church who discloses something like incest to justify hysterical neurotic behavior, while I am shunned and people run home to see if my name appears on the Registry of Sex Offenders lists?
And something that really bothered me was; Why does the disclaimer sign posted above the secretaries window at the Rape and Sexual Abuse Center at 21 Lindsy ave. in Nashville, Tenn. clearly state that because it is a United Way Service and recieves state and federal funding, that " No one can be discriminated upon or denied services based on Age, Race, or Religous affiliation", but no where on that sign or in any of the printed material I ever saw does it mention one damn thing about Gender?
As a male, why can't I expect services like everyone else?

I enjoy the chat here, but you guys live not only in another state, but another world.
I denied any sexual abuse to a social worker once, and left that question unanswered on her questionaire, just for these same reasons, and I needed her service.
Here in Tennesee no one, and let me reiterate; not one single damn person I have met has constructively addressed the fact that I even could possibly have had illicit sexual contact with an adult as a minor child. I am a male; and as close as any recognition of abuse that has come is that I need to learn to put things in perspective and look at underage sex as the worldly learning experience I have been blessed with, and use it constructively to engage in manly hetero sex, and keep my feelings and emotions in check, and learn how to brag about having sex as a kid execpt anywhere around church.
I wish just one of you would spend a week here just trying to get recognition, let alone any form of services.
SIA group!@#$%^&*
All due respects Joe, and I don't want to appear angry at you or Victor or anyone else here, but you HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING. I'm tired of self therapy and substituting He for She.
I'm too worn out for even my quote.
Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#44166 - 06/25/03 05:46 PM Re: Trapped
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Quote:
I am not going to disagree with your logic Joe, but why is it I can't go to a SIA meeting or be seen by someone who will recognize me as a survivor like women or any other citizen?
Tom,

I don't know if you would find a meeting close to your home. I go 46 miles, one way, to get to the one meeting anywhere near me.

But this week it was 2 guys and one woman. I know there are at least two other guys besides the two of us that were there this week.

There are single-sex groups, but women I've met at the group I attend do recognize that I was injured when I was abused, and that I need to work, with help from them and others, to get better.

Quote:
As a male, why can't I expect services like everyone else?
Because we male survivors haven't done enough to educate the rest of the world, and we haven't done enough to demand our right to heal.

Quote:
I wish just one of you would spend a week here just trying to get recognition, let alone any form of services.
It took me weeks of surfing and screwing up my courage to contact SIA, then another week to get to the first meeting. Total of about 2 months from the time I started surfing for a sex abuse survivors' self help group.

I haven't even tried to get any services through the public health system. Too open for me right now. Too unprotected. I'm just plain scared to try.

Quote:
SIA group!@#$%^&*

All due respects Joe, and I don't want to appear angry at you or Victor or anyone else here, but you HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING. I'm tired of self therapy and substituting He for She.
I'm trying to get by, as best as I can, with what's available to me, and what I can bring myself to ask for.

Tom, you do sound angry. And you should be. Being abused is wrong. Being denied help is wrong. I don't think anyone here would disagree with those statements.

We, the other male survivors who come here, can listen (ok, read) and write back, or go to chat, etc. We can offer hope and prayers. We can share experience (what works, what doesn't), strength (disclosure stories, prevention stories), and hope (inspiring and uplifting celebrations of the good things in our lives).

I hope you can mix and match the stuff that is available, in whatever formats and venues, to come up with something to make you feel like you're getting some of help you want and need. For myself, I'll be here "for a while longer" and I'm glad to try to help, as best as I can.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#44167 - 06/25/03 08:22 PM Re: Trapped
Wuamei Offline
Member

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

Sure you're angry. Hey I'm angry. SA makes me angry. The sexual stereotyping that men are always victimizers & women are always victims makes me angry. The lack of resources & support for men makes me angry. http://www.nonstick.com/sounds/Marvin_The_Martian/ltmm_019.wav http://www.nonstick.com/wpics/marvin.jpg

Our anger can motivate us to action, become constructive anger. We can build our own support,
name our abuse, tell people, make them listen.

Hey that's what women had to do not too many years ago. If they did it so can we.

Tom, hang in there with us ok. This is the kind of stuff we're trying to do here at MS. And MS is the men here, you & I, all of us.

Victor

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

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#44168 - 06/26/03 10:27 AM Re: Trapped
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
Thanx for the uplifting words boys, but you are so far off trail you aren't even in the hunt.
I don't know if you have read anything I have written about the uphill treadmill I have been on 'REACHING OUT FOR HELP', but if you had, you might see that there is NOTHING avaiable. Why the hell do you think I keep asking?
I went the RASC route and was blessed with 11 mo. of their 'therapy' until the liberated alternate lifestyle females there told me that they could not provide anything further for me, and I could get services elsewhere, because; "society accecpts me better because you are a male". This from a public funded program none the less. I was bumped because there were younger females on a waiting list.
Then I was told about a group close to 50 mi away, and went for an interview twice to become a member. After 8 weeks the gal who ran the group finally came beck and I got to attend once [1], until they moved the time of the group ahead 1 hour to accomadate her Dr. appointments. The other 3 guys were phoned and informed, but because I lived outside the area code, they did not let me know, and I arrived what I thought was on time the second week only to meet them as they were leaving.
Do I need to rewrite the insurance story?
And this is as good as your profession gets around here. It's refreshing to see you boys so happy with what you do, but I think I have had enough of this dogshit.
So long.
Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#44169 - 06/26/03 11:07 AM Re: Trapped
Marc Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Tucson, AZ
Tom,

Are you through? Are you pissed enough yet to do something about it? No offense to Tennessee but... I think we've heard a TON of Tennessee jokes on how backward it is in our lives (beaten only by W VA and LA).

Unfortunately (and I know it ain't fair!), YOU my friend are one of the few people that are going to have too drag your state kicking and screaming into the new millenia.

Personally I find your states laws and treatment of sex and sex offences as abhorrent as the Catholic Church's. The only 'good' (?) thing about it is it really isn't limited to just men there. Seems most people are treated as second class citizens regardless of sex or age.

For example...

Tennessee -- Age of Consent

But hey that's just me.

Though I do have a friend here in SF who has lived in Knoxville and he agrees with you.

I think that you have been treated like shit. I think that you have been treated like shit because you are a man (Sucks don't it?). This is a lesson in real morality for us all. Are you going to let that cycle continue? I'm sorry that in order to receive legitamate, adequate care you have to work doubly, possibly triply as hard as anyone else. But you aren't alone. And maybe, just maybe, this will make your survival that much more precious to you and to the other boys/men being victimized a second time in the state of Tennessee.

Hey, it's not like you can't take the fight to your state capital. And I'll put my money where my mouth is. If I can help in anyway in your fight, just ask!

Start your own Male Survivors group. Damnit man! You KNOW there are other men out there as hurt and as pissed as you are. Mobilize 'em!

Get your support from the people here. But you'll have to do the work there. We won't have the same effect.

Hang in there buddy. Maybe it's why you have survived. \:\)


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#44170 - 06/26/03 12:39 PM Re: Trapped
dwf Offline
Moderator/BoD Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/24/03
Posts: 1223
Loc: Austin, Texas USA
Tom,

With all due respect, I'd like to offer a couple

of questions that I have found helpful to

ask of myself.

When I asked these of myself and tried to get

honest about the answers, I began to

change.

And then "they", "the world", "the State" began

to change. Me first, then them. Not vice-versa.

Two question that I ask myself (in sequence, must

ask both);

Why do I continue to stay in an abusive

situation,

what is my payoff, what am I getting out of it?



Question two:

What can I do to get the hell out of the

abusive

situation (or state) that I am in, and am I

willing to do those things, regardless of how

hard they may appear?


Ok, Ok, that's really more than two questions, but

I'm trying to appear more concise than I am.

Tom, my heart is with you, man. I'm from the

granddaddy of all dysfunctional states, Texas.

I've been illegal here for my whole life.

If you're sick of being there, why don't you

fucking leave?


I know, lots of reasons why it appears easy to

stay, many more reasons why it appears so

uncertain to leave.

Take care, my brother. Hope none of this is too

harsh or in any way offensive.

If so, I apologize and ask your pardon.

I want you to

feel better, to get better.

How about you?


With respect and best wishes,


Your fellow survivor,

_________________________
"Poke salad Annie, 'gators got you granny
Everybody said it was a shame
'Cause her mama was aworkin' on the chain-gang"

-Tony Joe White

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#44171 - 06/26/03 05:27 PM Re: Trapped
Sans Logos Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
Tom,

I sure am sorry about your anger, but I just have to ask as nicely as possible: Why the hell are you barking at us? We are not the ones standing in the way of you getting what you need. And we did not initiate the course of events that brought you to the same place we are.

I truly hope you find peace you need; I linger at the edge of the same flavor of rage as you seem to be indulging, I'm just too scared to let myself go there.

It makes me feel badly that you are feeling so unsupported, but what more can be done than to just be here; at least here, you're not in Nashville anymore?? At least here a house won't fall on you. Hell there is no yellow brick road out of this place leading to some emerald city, but we're not the guy behind the curtain.

Sorry, bad metaphors, ...............be well

Ron

_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#44172 - 06/26/03 06:08 PM Re: Trapped
godsrabbit Offline
Member

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 98
i have to confess, sometimes it is less about the availability of support than our attitudes toward what is available...

despite immense support, i fought therapy tool and nail for a very long time (and still fight it in my own way)...

i like laura davis' book and i have no problem whatsoever making the necessary pronoun changes in it...and if something in it does not apply to me (which much of it does not), then i just move to the next section...

i do not expect the world to be tailored to my needs...if it were, i would have never been abused in the first place...

i am very grateful for the availability of what is out there...it is not perfect, but then nothing is...and it continues to improve and that is what matters...


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#44173 - 06/26/03 07:39 PM Re: Trapped
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
I still don't see anyone write that there could even be the remotest possibility that the counseling profession, and not just me, not the state, not the laws, not the pedophiles, not the street walkers or even God himself; but the mental health profession has dropped the ball and could potentially have an internal problem.
Where is the first person concerned enough to be willing to speak to me without wanting money up front? What do you think the legislature is going to do anyway? All the laws in the world are not going to make anybody give a shit.
I don't know the times I have offered to start a group, on anybody elses terms, and do ALL the work myself beforehand for the facilitator. How many times??
The latest in a series of counselors was PhD level and did have an understanding of the importance of breaking silence and identifying in a group and actually helped in the very one I described above that was 50 mi away during his training. But eventually he only found only frustration as well, and finally shifted his focus on getting paid. He even went as far as trying to involve Vanderbilt to recognize the colossal need, and offered to facilitate a group for FREE, and I would do whatever with my liscense as an RN to help.
Leave? What the hell do you think? I don't know about you, but I have going on 30 years vested in being a property owner and a landlord here, and I do still have a wife with a career and son still in school. Yeah, I'd love to leave someday, and may very well when I can no longer manage this, but in the mean time I aint about to give it away.
I think a change of websites is in order here, because I continue to become more hostile by the day. I suppose you figure if they refuse to look up to you and see your way, you can always piss them off long enough until they leave.
I have gotten what little I have by maintianing control and making sensible choices because I knew there were consequences, like HIV and JAIL. So I'm going to stay in control now, and realize you folk are NOT the ones who need to be advising me.
I believe in another budget cycle or possibly two, the whole mental health theraputic profession will resolve it's problems of egotism and overpayment all on it's own.
I think the problem at this monment in time is if I don't stop letting a bunch of over educated T's stop feeding their personal frustrations off me, then it won't be very long until I actually become the raging asshole they want to dx me as.
I saw a bumper sticker not long ago that I feel relates oh too well right now.
" I USED TO BE A RAGING ASSHOLE, BUT AFTER EXTENSIVE THERAPY, NOW I'M COMFORTABLE WITH THAT"

Now for my quote one more time; "In this time of economic uncertainty, it's all to easy to see who is dedicated to providing health care, and who is chasing bucks."

May God Bless each of you; Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#44174 - 06/26/03 08:35 PM Re: Trapped
godsrabbit Offline
Member

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 98
tom,

clearly you are very angry, and i have not been here long enough to understand the full extent of why... you are frustrated with a system which is certainly not perfect and which i think we all share a frustration with...i personally do not rely on therapy alone...i have a support group of friends and i have my Church...these things sustain me...i feel very fortunate for that...perhaps you need support other than a "system" which you feel victimizes you...perhaps you need to look around and consider where else you can effectively get support...
Quote:
Originally posted by Tom S.:
I still don't see anyone write that there could even be the remotest possibility that the counseling profession...has dropped the ball and could potentially have an internal problem.
i do not see where anybody is saying that may not be a possibility...
Quote:
Originally posted by Tom S.:
Where is the first person concerned enough to be willing to speak to me without wanting money up front?
um...here? why do you assume it must be person to person to get someone to help you?
Quote:
Originally posted by Tom S.:
I think a change of websites is in order here, because I continue to become more hostile by the day. I suppose you figure if they refuse to look up to you and see your way, you can always piss them off long enough until they leave.
i am not sure what it is you are looking for that you are not getting, tom? you disapprove/disagree with therapy...okay...there are other options...no one is cramming therapy down your throat...not that i have seen...
Quote:
Originally posted by Tom S.:
So I'm going to stay in control now, and realize you folk are NOT the ones who need to be advising me.
no, not if it is not useful...do you have to be here to be advised or is this not just a place of mutual support? (mutual being the operative word)...
Quote:
Originally posted by Tom S.:
May God Bless each of you; Tom S.
God bless you too tom, i continue to pray for you...i hope you will stay because i think you are someone i can learn from...

pax,

~ rabbit


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#44175 - 06/26/03 11:11 PM Re: Trapped
Mike Church Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 01/23/03
Posts: 3439
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Tom:

Quote:
I think a change of websites is in order here, because I continue to become more hostile by the day.
What makes you think that you have to leave Tom. If we all left because someone pissed us off there would be no one here. That is human nature. Maybe you are just being a bit to harsh on yourself. You feel the way you do and you have just cause in my opinion. You also have a lot of good stuff in your posts. Gosh Tom we are all unique and diverse. If it were not so we would all go completely bonkers. It would be like the town of Stepford (remember stepford wives).

It is ok to get pissed. It helps relieve pressure and it is a whole lot safer doing it here than, say, at work.

You told me this is your busy time and I appreciate that but dont leave because nobody seems to see it as you do.

Rabbit has made some excellent posts.

And Tom you do know what is important to you and that it is you and your family. We all feel that way. Some of us do not have the internal guts if you like that you have. I would say that the younger men here are particularly vulnerable, mainly because it is so fresh in their minds.

Speaking for myself I try not to get too upset about anything anymore. In 15 minutes or hours it wont matter a damn anyway.

Maybe the whole damned system we have is inappropriate. I dont know. But I continue to do what I can to improve both my life, my family's life and the lives of those I touch here.

You may not realize it but you do too.

P.S. Have a great day and good weekend.

Your brother

_________________________
Mikey

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

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#44176 - 06/26/03 11:23 PM Re: Trapped
Leosha Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 3614
Loc: Right here
Yes, I read how you say it, and it makes so much sense at me. I think with all that people say at me these two weeks since I am forced at 'dealing' with this, I think it does overwhelm, that it is a life thing, no quick fix to it. I just think I can hide those thoughts away forever, but then with what make me start feel it again, I see I can not, because once this starts, there is no rest of it, I can not escape it in my head. I too have felt the "it is not fair" since this makes me think more of it. But I do know that I have recieved some good of the "not fair" part of life. Sometimes I feel it is not fair that I can 'work' as athlete, and make money for my family by doing something I enjoy so much. It seems not fair, when many people have no jobs, many people have to work at jobs they hate. So I know that sometimes, the 'not fair' works to help me also. Is that fair? I do not know, I am confusing myself with what I say! I just wish to give support at you, and to hope that even if this is a life thing, we are never full done of it, that we do get at a time when it is not so big of us. I will wish you peace in mind.

_________________________
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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