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#447924 - 09/22/13 06:57 PM Catch 22
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
My son is 45 yrs. old and I found out last year that he was sexually abused when he was only 5 yrs. old. This finally came out because he had recently married the woman he had been living with for the past 20 yrs and for some reason, it was time to get it off of his chest. This is where the Catch 22 comes in, the person who sexually abused him was my little brother, he was just 13 yrs. old. I was so shocked, my baby was sexually abused and my baby brother was the abuser!!!
At first I wanted the whole family to know what my brother did to my son because my family thinks my son is and always has been "out of control". My brother now lives 3000 miles away from the rest of the family and usually comes home once a year to visit. When I called him about this, I had to ask the questions because my son was so young at the time he didn't know how long the abuse went on or what actually occurred, 40 yrs later. It started at my parent's home and it lasted about a year. My brother said it stopped after about a year because he finally learned what sex was and realized what they had been doing was wrong. According to my son, he didn't know why this stopped and thought that it was normal behavior among boys. My brother said he would never be able to come home again because he wouldn't be able to face his sisters and their families again.
My son has had a drinking problem since he was a teenager and would always refuse to get any kind of help. He has big issues with anxiety, has to have a drink or two before he can go out to dinner with his wife or with his father and me. He also has anger issues. He works at a place with my sister & her husband and I have heard many times about my son throwing tantrums on the job. He's obsessive about things, get's over emotional over little things, can cry easily,I can go on an on.
My son refuses to seek out any help,he doesn't think he has a problem or problems. He also says he doesn't want the family to know about what his uncle did to him.
For the past year I have tried not to think about it but my son isn't getting any better, he is just getting worse and I'm beginning to hate myself for not letting my family know that THIS ABUSE is WHY he acts the way he does, that it's not his fault while on the other hand I'm protecting my brother, who was like a son to me, I feel like a traitor!
Where do I go with all of this, my heart is so heavy.

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#447925 - 09/22/13 07:10 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3536
Loc: O Kanada
i am so sorry to hear about this.
you are definitely a victim of what happened.
you need to be honest about the whole thing before you can move forward.
that is my opinion.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#447930 - 09/22/13 08:29 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
lucylives Offline


Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 367
So sorry for what you are going through. I can't even imagine. If I were you, I would find myself a very good and QUALIFIED therapist to discuss this with.

What are your motives for wanting to tell your family when your son doesn't want you to? Just curious.

But I would definitely not proceed with anyting until you get some good quality help. I can't imagine how difficult this must be for you.

Hugs to you.

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#447932 - 09/22/13 08:45 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
Esposa Offline
F&F Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 726
Loc: NJ
frown A big hug to you. So hard on so many different levels - as a parent, as a sister.

Many of us supporters know very well the urge to tell, the urge to qualify behavior that now makes sense given what you know. It is like now you can understand some things that you never could before. And you want to share that knowledge with people who have watched your son as he struggled. Only it's up to him - and this can be very hard for you. I agree with Lucy - find someone who knows about this stuff - specifically about men who are abused - and tell that person and let them help you process all of this very unfortunate information.

I am sorry you have to be here - but know that you are in good company and many of the men who come to the Family and Friends forum will be able to give you valuable input.

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#447938 - 09/22/13 10:35 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
WhyWhyWhy Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 41
Loc: some place bad
So sorry for you & yours. Please get yourself to AL Anon since part of the problem you are handling is his drinking. Start w/a Beginners Mtg & allow yourself to listen & learn. Yes, then find an experienced T in CSA. My experience is that both will help. I will hope & pray that your son also sees an experienced T. He Deserves recovery. God Bless
_________________________
Still trying hope?

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#447948 - 09/22/13 11:51 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: lucylives]
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
Thank you for the hugs and advice. I don't know if you have any idea what it is like to have a child (my only child) and the entire family looks at him like "What A Screw-Up". I want them to know the underlying reason, that it's Not His Fault, he never had a chance to have a normal childhood,it messed with his mind something awful.
Can you understand that?

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#447976 - 09/23/13 09:02 AM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
WhyWhyWhy Offline


Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 41
Loc: some place bad
Dear CA: I can only understand your situation to a point, not having been there. My son is in his 40's so I can surely relate to your pain & it is painful to even imagine in my family. You are in the right place here, being able to talk & get some inputs from people who care, so pls keep talking. I do hope & pray for changes & progress in your family.
PS: It's never one's fault when forced or na´ve, never. I/we do understand that.
_________________________
Still trying hope?

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#448009 - 09/23/13 04:30 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
How do I warn my niece who has a 5 yr. old son & a 1 yr. old daughter without sounding like her crazy aunt? She lives out of state and while visiting her family back home, I observed that sometimes her little boy can be a handful and at one time I observed that she was either to tired or overwhelmed to make him stop doing whatever annoying thing he was doing at the time. She said "sometimes it's easier to just let it go". How do I explain to her that she has to be on top of her children at all times, to know what they are doing and who they are with. I spoke with her about it being time for the Stranger Danger talk but how do I tell her that she has to include family in there as well??
What happened to my son started innocently at my parent's home one day when they were babysitting my son. My Mom thought nothing of letting my 5 yr old take a bath with her 13 yr old before bedtime.

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#448011 - 09/23/13 04:43 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
Esposa Offline
F&F Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 726
Loc: NJ
I totally get "wanting them to understand" - but that needs to be the conversation you have with your son. Trust me, I know first hand what this feels like - any of us who are married to a man that acted out sexually knows how badly we want to qualify the behavior - but it is just NOT our job. That's why we support each other. Because here, you can qualify it wink Do you know how hard it is to look in the faces of my friends who know what my husband did and not be able to tell them the whys?? I think you do know wink

The thing is - it doesn't matter if they understand. In fact, they may not really understand. It may backfire for you. You just can never tell - and this is why your son needs to decide who he would like to tell, if anyone.

As far as warning your niece - tell her a hypothetical story. Tell her that this type of abuse is most frequently at the hands of family or trusted people. Tell her the statistics. Educate her.

Focus on your son and his healing. And your healing. This is very painful stuff and I am sorry you are going through it.

Just my two cents... from experience.



Edited by Esposa (09/23/13 04:44 PM)

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#448012 - 09/23/13 04:53 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Esposa]
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
Thank you Esposa, Yes I do know how it feels. I don't have any intentions of blurting this out to the family (I would like to) but like you said, it could backfire. I can't even imagine how the extended families of sexually abused children would even function again once they have learned about it!

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#448072 - 09/24/13 07:49 AM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
lucylives Offline


Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 367
I am in Esposa's shoes. Having friends and family that know who are probably judging me for staying after my husband did the most horrific thngs is hard. Thankfully if they judge, they do it quietly. I would like to tell them the story of what happened to my husband so I wouldn't be judged for staying but I don't. It is not my story to tell. My husband has trust issues and sharing his story would be the worst thing I could do. My husband and I have an agreement though. I am "allowed" to share all in my recovery groups. That way I am not carrying this burden alone and he knows the wives in my group are dealing with the same shit with their husbands.

All I say is my husband is wounded and let's just leave it at that.

I have found therapy and recovery groups have been the most helpful things. I don't make any huge decisions without them.

We feel your pain.

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#469353 - 08/25/14 05:14 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
Update almost a year later.
My little brother got married in April and he wanted me and my younger sister to come out to Calif. for the wedding. I just couldn't force myself to go since I learned about the abuse, I made up an excuse why I couldn't go but my younger sister did go. She stayed for 2 weeks and had a grand time & went on and on about it. While she was there, my son said to me, "I bet she & my brother will get into the wine one evening & he will spill the beans to her". Well, after she got home from her fun filled time and told us what a good time she had had, I couldn't take it anymore. I decided that I would have a meeting with my 2 sisters. I did a lot of research on the effects of child sexual abuse and made copies for both of them with a photo of my son when he was 5 yrs. old. As it turned out, my brother did tell her his version of the abuse and she never said a word to me when she came back from her trip. When I requested a meeting with both sisters, she had informed the other sister what it was about. So when I walked into the meeting, they already knew. BACKFIRE someone said, well that's what happened. The sister who attended the wedding attacked my son with a pretty rotten story about something did at a stag party when he was in his 20's which she said I told her. Well I never heard the story before and another incident that was harmless but her objective was to attack my son instead of support him. My other sister blamed his behavior on the fact that his father and I were divorced, accused us of smoking pot in front of him and my son witnessing his father hitting me. These things did not occur in my sons presence, ever. I didn't enter into this meeting with them in anger, I just tried to educate them so that they could understand why my son has the drinking problem, the eating problem, the anxiety, the insecurity, the low self worth, anger issues and so on. They didn't get it!! So now I'm not speaking to the sister who attacked him and my other sister is more upset that this abuse issue of my 5 yr old baby has broken up the family!My son is aware of all of this now and it only confirms what he has felt all along, his own family doesn't like him. He actually apologized to my brother because now he may never be able to come back home to see his family. I told my son that "He doesn't owe anyone an apology especially my brother!
I've begged him to seek some professional help and that his dad and I would do anything to help, I've even given him this website, but he refuses to check it out. I'm at a loss in more ways than one:( I Apologize for this lengthy post.

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#469369 - 08/26/14 12:06 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: Carol Ann]
sugarbaby Offline


Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 377
I am very sorry for the crisis you are all in. Don't you or your son let other people's uneducated (on this topic) views determine your courses of action. They don't understand. Period. Your sisters do not understand the issue. As someone who once did not understand the issue I can say that it takes some time to learn about CSA and they may come around one day with a different opinion on things. Tell your son, their opinions are not to be taken as a reflection of who he is. Did that make sense? They may see him one way but that is not how he really is. I say this because......

From your first post:
Quote:
My son has had a drinking problem since he was a teenager and would always refuse to get any kind of help. He has big issues with anxiety, has to have a drink or two before he can go out to dinner with his wife or with his father and me. He also has anger issues. He works at a place with my sister & her husband and I have heard many times about my son throwing tantrums on the job. He's obsessive about things, get's over emotional over little things, can cry easily,I can go on an on.
My son refuses to seek out any help,he doesn't think he has a problem or problems. He also says he doesn't want the family to know about what his uncle did to him.


If I didn't know better I'd say you were my mother-in-law. From what I've seen that is CLASSIC behavior for CSA. He is suffering the effects of CSA. His behavior is not who he is. His behavior is a reaction to being victimized. Period. Your sone has no reason to apologize anymore than a rape victim should apologize for being raped. He does have ever reason to go get real help. Once he finds the help that is right for him his world will be so much better.

My husband did not do well with talk therapy and meds alone. He spent 9 days in an in-patient mental health ward at a community hospital and it was those 9 days that began the best part of his life.

Keep posting! smile

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#469606 - 09/02/14 01:44 PM Re: Catch 22 [Re: sugarbaby]
Carol Ann Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 6
Loc: New York
Thank you Sugarbaby for your words of support! Sometimes the stress of feeling like I'm responsible for breaking up the family gets to be a bit much. One good thing though, my son did check out this site one time and I am hoping that he will come back to it one day.
I will definitely share your post with him.

Thanks again.

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