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#448321 - 09/26/13 01:31 PM It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it
Adam A Gedman Offline


Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 187
Loc: Canada
I have not discussed this with my therapist yet, or anyone else for that matter, but I know I must.

I remember a comment when I first arrived here that the MS community wants to hear our flaws, and all the things we can't say anywhere else. So here it is.

If I was attacked when I was around 8 yrs old, this had to occur several years later. I know this because my family moved, and the couple next door moved in a few years after we did.
I would have been in grade 7, or about 11/12 yrs old.

I was asked to watch our neighbors kids one night.
The older boy would have been 9, the daughter 7.
The night was uneventful, we all watched TV, then they went upstairs for a bath.
When they were finished, they put night clothes on (PJ's for him, a night dress for her) and they came down to the basement.
I told them it was time for bed, and they both jumped on me, and started play wrestling with me. Presumably to delay bedtime.
I was bigger but not much bigger, so tickling gained me some space, and I chased them around the basement.
I was tickling the older boy, and the younger girl, grabbed me to pull me away.
I spun around and lifted her onto a sofa and began to tickle her ribs and she started kicking at me to get free.
At the same time, the boy grabbed my arm. I looked to where he was grabbing me, and while still tickling, my hand ended up on her genitals.
She was not wearing underwear under her night dress.
It was just for an instant, but that was enough to snap me back. I pulled my hand away, put an end to the game, and sent them to bed.

The next day the girl saw me out front of our houses and told me that her parents wouldn't let me watch them again, and I knew why.

I felt and still feel a great deal of guilt about this.
My memory of the event seems very clear, so I don't think I intentionally did anything wrong.
But being told like that, and having already accepted blame for my own attack as well as being blamed by my parents for my younger brother being hit by a car,
this just confirmed what I already believed about myself. That I was to blame.

I cannot imagine I would do something like that, given what happened to me. Nothing like that had ever occurred since.
But I have read that our minds can rewrite things to make it easier for us to rationalize, or understand.
I fear that I did do more or intended more and am just not aware of it.
Yet my recollection seems so vivid.

I am racked with guilt about it.

So you can all let me have it, now. I feel I deserve the contempt I feel toward myself.

I don't know how to deal with this.
I feel sick to my stomach every time this event plays out in my mind.
_________________________
Presence is the key, for all we have is now.
All we ever have is right now.

Formerly Adam A Gedman (AKA - A damAGed man)

But you can call me Kevin

Toronto Mini WoR - May 2014

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#448323 - 09/26/13 02:10 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3323
Loc: somewhere in Africa
Adam - i believe your account.

you KNOW the truth - you just don't FEEL it.

because you have been forced and conditioned to feel shame and guilt all your life.

IT WAS NOT YOUR FAULT!

YOU ARE NOT TO BLAME!

lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


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#448325 - 09/26/13 02:18 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Rich1967 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/17/13
Posts: 270
Loc: PA
Adam,

In my opinion real abusers do what they do and don't care who they hurt - it's all about them and what they want. You CARE and you didn't do anything on purpose to hurt that girl. You're own guilt and shame are proof of that. Do you know where this girl is today? Maybe you could write to her to say you are sorry.

I'm so sorry you've had to carry that around all this time. I hope you find love and acceptance here and you have it from me.

(((((Adam)))))
_________________________
Rich

"Me too" - I don't think I will ever get tired of saying or hearing these two words.

My Story:
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=441625#Post441625

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#448327 - 09/26/13 03:18 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
SoccerStar Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 915
Loc: New York
What you have provided is clearly an account of an accident. You hadn't planned it, didn't enjoy it, meant no harm, and stopped instantly.

It does seem the girl was disturbed by what happened - as kids are rightly conditioned to be for their own self-protection. But since it was so brief and fleeting we can realistically hope that she felt no true lasting damage from it. With parents so willing to protect her even from relatively innocuous events, she likely grew up quite well-cared-for and emotionally healthy.

Think of it as breaking a dish in the same house where you babysat. Some degree of shame is unavoidable, because you did it. But it has no reflection on your character whatsoever, because it was an accident. If anything, it speaks well of your character that you are so mortified at the thought of possibly having harmed someone. But I highly doubt it caused her any harm. Give yourself some slack.


Matt
_________________________
My story

"Don't think it hasn't been a little slice of heaven just because it hasn't!" --Bugs Bunny

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#448333 - 09/26/13 04:41 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
On The Fringe Offline


Registered: 09/21/13
Posts: 326
Loc: Southeast USA
Adam,

I will just toss out a scenario that happens all the time.

Boys and girls are playing, wrestling and having fun. Laughing and enjoying being kids. One of the girls gets tickled and curls up in a ball. On the way to curling up in a ball her knee connects with your balls. Ouch!

It is an accident, it happens all the time. There certainly is no grief of sexual assault about it. She may feel badly about accidentally hurting her friend, but no false guilt.

In hearing your story, it could have just as easily ended with you taking a knee to the groin as her. Maybe you should be thankful smile

I would say to just lighten up on this one. No foul. After review, there is no flag on the play.....
_________________________
I feel more like I do now than I did when I got here.

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#448334 - 09/26/13 04:57 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: On The Fringe]
FormerTexan Offline
Site Administrator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 11029
Loc: Denver, CO
Quote:
So you can all let me have it, now. I feel I deserve the contempt I feel toward myself.


Adam, shame is a cruel burden when it comes from abuse. We tend to consider that every possible action on our part must somehow have evil intent based on the shame of abuse, replaying those old tapes again and again, when it is simply not the case. The account you gave shows no perpetrator intent at all. I hope that you will consider the positive messages your fellow survivors have given you today, as you work towards replacing the old tapes with newer messages of self-forgiveness. It will take some time, but it IS possible.
_________________________
List of things ain't nobody got time for:

1. That


If I could meet myself as a boy...

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#448335 - 09/26/13 05:44 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Onesimus75 Offline


Registered: 08/22/13
Posts: 158
Loc: Minnesota
***triggers***

I hope you're hearing what everyone's saying.
The contact sounds like the sort of accident that any kid could have.
The fact you noticed so much sounds partially like A] you were abused so you were aware in a way they weren't. and B] 11/12 is about that age where lots of guys start being more aware of stuff down there.

Let's look at the abuse cycle as I understand it (Lifted from chemical dependency stuff and some of my volunteer stuff that involves perps. Not a lot of people willing to talk to them in prison, and professionals are way over-loaded.)

This is just my non-professional take on stuff, but it's why I think you're ok.

Part 1: Negative feelings.
(This doesn't fit you. You sound like you were having a good time and fit in well.)
Part 2: Negative anticipation.
(This is the sort of thing we're pretty familiar with as survivors as well. It's sort of like our perps dumped this emotional poison on us. But it's the "I feel down and things are bad and I will always feel down and things will always feel bad." thing.)
That is 100% off of where you were here. You were happy, accepted, trusted, and having fun.
Part 3: Isolation
('cause if it's never going to work out you don't need to waste time reaching out or staying connected)
But the problem is that all of these things still leave you feeling crappy. And we don't want to feel bad, so...
Part 4: Fantasy
"If X happens then I'll feel better." If I get high, get drunk, go eat a pound of chocolate... or for perps, do something sexual then I'll feel better.
Once again you're not doing this, from anything you said! You don't fit this pattern!
Part 5: Planning.
"eating a pound of chocolate will make me feel better. How can I get my hands on a pound of chocolate... If i make friends with the grocer, then so on and so forth."
No planning here either. You still totally don't fit.
Part 6: Abusing.
Abusing yourself with chemicals, drugs, cutting, suicide,... abusing others with abuse, rage, violence, cutting them off from you in relationships to feel control/power...
Dude, you didn't feel power, or joy, you felt panic! Panic isn't a reward, it something you avoid, and you describe avoiding it like a cat jumping off a hot tin roof!
Part 7: Transitory guilt.
This is the drunk holding the toilet bowl, promising Jesus he'll never go to the bar again, but not taking the step to call AA and find a meeting, or throwing out his bottles.
You had shock and took immediate steps to change the situation, to correct the problem. This is once again 180% off of offender behavior patterns. In fact I think many if not most 11/12 year old boys wouldn't have reacted as quickly or as maturely as you did. Awesome, awesome, awesome response on your part!
Part 8: Reframing
Remember how we don't like to feel bad? Well, guilt makes us feel bad. So in the abuse pattern this is the cover/up hide it stuff. There's this incredible cycle of this among felons that I know. "I'm a murderer but at least I'm not a thief. I'm a thief but I never hurt anybody. I'm a white color criminal, I don't touch drugs. I dealt drugs but I'm not rapist. I'm a sex offender but I never killed anyone."
I think this is a big part of why offenders say such evil, horrible, vile things to us when they just used us for their ends.
What did you do? The exact opposite once again. You felt guilt right away. You didn't avoid it, or dodge it.

I think you make a good point that you'd been 'taught' to do that, and I'm so very sorry.

I would like to think (because it makes sense to me) that the parents were being cautious, not attacking or blaming you. I'm willing to bet that until then they didn't make that connection between your oncoming teen years. Some really nice, non-accusatory people (Dr. James Dobson in the circles I run around in) don't like boys babysitting on general principle. It didn't have to be any more than that.

Sorry to go into a bit of detail about the pattern, but you were feeling like a perp and the best way I know to break that is to look at what that really looks like.
_________________________
We are not defined by our faults, or our wounds, but by the truth within us, which nothing can take away.

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#448345 - 09/26/13 07:37 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 585
Adam,

First, hats off to you for posting this. It must've taken a tremendous amount of courage to post about something for which you've been carrying a lot of guilt and shame, and I'm really proud of you for doing it. I imagine you're feeling very vulnerable after disclosing - please remember that nobody here is judging you and we all accept you for who you are.

Now to the nitty-gritty - I think the other members have rightly emphasized that this was JUST an accident.

Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
But I have read that our minds can rewrite things to make it easier for us to rationalize, or understand.
I fear that I did do more or intended more and am just not aware of it.


The biggest counter to this line of thought is your guilt. From what I know, this 'rewriting' happens with abusers (i.e. sociopaths/psychopaths) who do NOT feel guilt. The very fact that it is bothering you decades after the incident really goes to show you do NOT belong to this group. Plain and simple.

Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
It was just for an instant, but that was enough to snap me back. I pulled my hand away, put an end to the game, and sent them to bed.

I cannot imagine I would do something like that, given what happened to me. Nothing like that had ever occurred since.

Yet my recollection seems so vivid.


Matt summed it up really well - "You hadn't planned it, didn't enjoy it, meant no harm, and stopped instantly." You need to believe in yourself.

I also wanted to add my two cents to possibly offer some more perspective. I revisited some of your posts, and I got the impression that the feelings you carry for this incident stem from very deep within your past. From what I gather, ever since you were very young, you were pretty much left to your own devices by your parents, and that probably had you growing up with a lot more responsibility and burdens on your shoulders than would otherwise have been the case. Add that to the common shame and guilt survivors feel after the abuse, and you have the recipe for a toxic dose of perpetual self-blame. I didn't (don't?) have the greatest of parents, so you should probably take this with a pinch of salt, but I suspect a lot of this has to do with how your parents treated you emotionally throughout your childhood - perhaps even beyond. You also noted what happened to your younger brother. I'm so sorry to hear what happened. Though you only mentioned him briefly, that was just gut-wrenching to read...and 'awful' doesn't even come close to adequate in describing how your parents blamed you for such a terrible tragedy. I do not know the details about the accident, and I fully understand if you do not want to talk about it, but I do feel that this is very much linked to your tendency to blame yourself for things for which you have no responsibility. Whatever happened, blaming you for such a thing is ABSURD. You've been engulfed in a vicious cycle of self-blame, and it's perceptibly taking a toll on you. You don't deserve all of this darkness.
_________________________
Husky

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#448374 - 09/26/13 11:57 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1490
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
...and while still tickling, my hand ended up on her genitals....It was just for an instant, but that was enough to snap me back. I pulled my hand away, put an end to the game, and sent them to bed.
By your own account you accidentally touched the girl's genitals and quickly pulled your hand away. There is no indication of abuse here. Please be easier on yourself and let this go.

I think your real issue is revealed where you say:
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
..and having already accepted blame for my own attack as well as being blamed by my parents for my younger brother being hit by a car, this just confirmed what I already believed about myself. That I was to blame....I feel I deserve the contempt I feel toward myself.
The burden of all this guilt and self-hatred is more than anyone could stand. This is NOT what you deserve Adam. None of what you describe was your fault. You have to start to believe that.

Jude
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#448427 - 09/27/13 12:11 PM Re: It Doesn't get much Uglier for me - Let me have it [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Adam A Gedman Offline


Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 187
Loc: Canada
Thank you all for a perspective other than my own.

I have held onto this for a long time.
Breaking the blame cycle is not easy however.
I wish it could just go away with such an outpouring of support.
But this I know is too much to expect. I will have to visit this with my T.

Lee, thank you for believing me. I didn't and don't really expect to be believed, and that is related to my family dysfunction as well.

Rich, you're always around to lend a supportive comment. Something I needed with regards to this.
I don't know where the family is, or specifically where she may be, but once I address this my T. I may try to find her.

Matt and fringe, great analogies, and both very true. I buy in, but my guilt about it wont go quite so quickly.
I hope beyond hope that she was not adversely affected. I know I would not handle that well.

FT, Forgiveness is not something I've found for my self yet. It is something I actively review several times a day.
I only hope it will sink in. But I fear there is more to address before that can happen.

Onesimus, if you're not a lawyer, perhaps you should be. I will have to bring your comments with me when I broach this topic with my T.
Thank you so much for the time and thought you put into your comments.
I do feel like a perp, and your points are all valid, hopefully they'll help convince me.

Husky, I don't know about brave, in fact I had very nearly taken this down several times yesterday out of pretty intense fear.
I have no illusions about my parents, and harbour a great deal of anger towards them.
I am not sure how to relay the story of my brothers car accident, given the context of this site.
But I would be willing to share that as well.
I feel sad and alone even just thinking about it.

Jude, You mentioned self-hatred, and although blame and guilt are something I can see, self-hatred is not something I had considered.
I guess they are all intertwined, and terribly accurate as well.
This marries well with my last session where my T asked me to describe myself, and everything I listed was negative.
I had a very difficult time coming up with anything positive about myself.

I have read through all these posts several times, and will likely several more times. They each are affirming in and of themselves.
I can't express how grateful I am to have found MS at a time that you all were here.

Thank You again
_________________________
Presence is the key, for all we have is now.
All we ever have is right now.

Formerly Adam A Gedman (AKA - A damAGed man)

But you can call me Kevin

Toronto Mini WoR - May 2014

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