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#449355 - 10/06/13 05:07 PM On the hook - accepting blame
Adam A Gedman Offline


Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 188
Loc: Canada
After posting about and receiving unbelievable support from the MS community, a couple of important things came out of this.
The willingness I have to be on the hook for something, and how I came to be this way.
The story is completely illogical to me now, but the tendency to feel responsible infiltrates everything I do, and every accident that has occurred in my presence since, and I guess it's backwards compatible as well.

It began with a four word question from both my parents, on the day that my younger brother was hit by a car.

"What did you do?"

It feels like these four words sentenced me to accepting a lifetime of blame.

I heard these words from both my parents, the day my brother was hit by a car.
It was a day just like all others. Mom and dad are sitting at the kitchen table of of little two bed bungalow, unwinding (drinking) after a day of work. As always were sent outside to play, to give them time forů.I dunno. Complaining about work or traffic, or the car that didn't work properly. I was given the responsibility of watching over a 3 year old, yet was never told to, or asked to do so. This apparently existing in my parents minds, and I was to just understand.
We lived on street that was becoming quite busy as a go between a couple major arteries. I was 8ish, and had been raped one evening, some time before this. My brother was 3, and as belligerent as a 3 year old, for lack of a better description.
As I was trying to fix the chain on my bike, my younger brother was dragging a large tricycle out of the shed. The trike was too big for him and he could barely reach the peddles. So I warned him that he could barely touch the peddles, and couldn't ride that thing. But off he went anyways and I went back to working on my own bike chain.

A short time later I heard crying, so headed out to see what he had done. As I made it out to the street, a female neighbour ran up to me and said that my brother had been hit by a car, and to go get my parents.
I ran to the front door, flung it open and yelled that Gregory had been hit by a car. They both got up from the table and yelled at me "what did you do?", while racing out the door. The rest is a blur. I stood there, as they rushed past me. Everything seemed silent, and I felt frozen in place. I don't have any recollection of making my way toward the scene, but recall my parents frenzied and screaming. They eventually got into an ambulance and left me behind.
They left an 8 yr old behind, on his own.
After a few hours I went to our neighbors house. They were surprised to see me, and thought I had gone with my parents.
I remember telling them that my parents blamed me, and they validated my parents comments, by saying that my parents expected me to watch my brother.
I guess I was doomed at that point, adults were telling me this was my fault.
They came home at some point. I didn't notice or care at that point.
They never corrected that question and never let me off the hook.

I did tell them that I thought they blamed me, some years later. Yet they still absolved themselves of any responsibility, and told me that I should have done a better job of watching my younger brother.

My brother Had a fractured skull requiring surgery to repair, but he recovered. He had to wear a hockey helmet to protect his head for some time. This made hitting him off limits, so I became the whipping boy. At least this is how I recall it. My brother learned that he need only cry out loud that I was doing something to him, and I would be smacked, slapped, thrown about etc.

He used this new found power anytime he saw me with the upper hand in a situation.
"Stop hitting me", was another few words that were regularly repeated, and my father was more than willing to exact revenge in protection of him.

My father worked very hard, and in the time he wasn't working he filled with drinking.
After one night, bartending for a catering company, he came home with a watch that had glow in the dark numbers. I was fascinated by this watch, and asked if I could have it for the night, so I could see the glowing numbers when I was in bed. My fathers agreed and gave me the watch. I put it safely in my room until bed.
My brother snuck in a took the watch, yet I caught him. A struggle ensued over the watch and those familiar words rang out. "Stop hitting me", and my father flipped out.
He grabbed me and dragged me into my room, flung me through the air into the far wall. He followed that by grabbing anything he could get his hands on, a full coin bank, a ceramic figurine, and the watch. All were hurled at me, the bank leaving a huge dent in the drywall, the ceramic figurine breaking into pieces, and the watch embedded in the wall just above my head.
I told the story of this incident to my grandmother, trying to find some support. But she too let me down. She was the one person I thought would help me.
Who was I to trust now?
Was I the real problem?
I must be just bad!
_________________________
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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#449358 - 10/06/13 06:29 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3513
Loc: somewhere in Africa
(((((Adam)))))
It never ceases to amaze me how clueless, stupid, inept and cruel some parents can be. We require higher standards of competence to operate a car than to impact a human life forever. I assure you - if you have any lingering doubts - that your parents were at fault - and NOT you!!!

I think I can sense that hook losing its hold on you.
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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#449364 - 10/06/13 08:49 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Jacob S Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/01/13
Posts: 614
Loc: where the shadows lie
Adam . . . seeing similarities between you and me . . . parents shirking responsibility . . . made to feel blame for jobs beyond our years . . . did you, like me, feel afraid to have dreams that were for yourself? I feel used up too early, like I had to give it my all and it wasn't enough and my fuse simply burnt out when I was still too young. Like plugging too many things into one outlet and the thing just dies. Sorry, rambling . . . its not your fault. You aren't bad. The support you were promised and needed fell through. Kids want to please, its natural for you to assume you must be the one at fault. But you aren't. You don't give a two year old a chess board and then get mad at him when he doesn't know what to do with it. It's not a fair expectation. And what your parents gave you wasn't fair either.
_________________________


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#449440 - 10/07/13 04:25 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 605
Adam,

I'm glad you got this out...

I read it when you first posted it and it had me thinking for a good deal since.

It seems like while your mind has already processed the fact that the whole series of incidents is illogical (which it is, and I'm glad you've realized this), your heart and emotions are still tearing you apart. That, at least, given what's happened to you, seems logical enough. The accident itself, I imagine, would've been damaging enough to any kid, but to have incident after incident compound that damage that was already done, must be so difficult to untangle emotionally.

I don't know how to break it to you more delicately or sensitively, so I'm just going to say it bluntly - the way you've been treated by your family (and your neighbors at the time of the accident, for that matter), is downright insane. You were 8. EIGHT. Your story reminds me of the term 'corkscrew child', where the child merely serves as the emotional dumpster of the parents' unprocessed internal garbage.

"What did you do?"

Those are four really loaded, haunting words, not to mention a devastating form of emotional abuse - rhetorical questions. It implies the accident was caused by you doing something to your brother. But, to be frank, you didn't bring him into this world, and you weren't the one driving the car.

My stomach actually churns and I can feel something boiling inside me when I read about adults blaming an 8-year-old boy for a horrible accident that in itself must've been so traumatic. I'm angry FOR you, not at you - rather, at your parents, and at your neighbors. Your parents, your neighbors - hell, really, someone - should've told you that it wasn't your fault, that it was an accident, that your brother was going to be OK and that YOU were going to be OK.

The way your father physically abused you, and perpetuated your brother's manipulations, are really incomprehensible too. It bothers me that he never tried to put the pieces of the puzzle together and simply ask what was going on before impulsively taking out all of his anger on you. I wish there was someone there to curb his temper and protect you. Given how he never really acknowledged your existence as a separate entity, I suspect that all of the guilt and shame you feel towards everything might well be an internalization of your father's own set of unprocessed conflicts.

I really hope you do succeed in untangling yourself from all of this - it's taken a toll on you for too long and you deserve better.
_________________________
Husky

My Story

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#449962 - 10/12/13 05:13 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Adam A Gedman Offline


Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 188
Loc: Canada
Thanks traveller, Jacob and husky,

I was very tentative about putting this up. Mainly because it is not really related to the purpose of this site. But I did none the less, as this is part of me. It is what I have to deal with. We all have our own issues to work through, and this just happens to be one more of mine.

I've unloaded a lot recently, and it is not without considerable anxiety. The aftermath as well, sent me into an irritable state for the last week. Everything is setting me off. I know it must be related, but have yet to truly connect the dots.

I had a therapy session this past Monday as well, and after revealing as much as I had , we had plenty to discuss. One thing in particular is an assertion that I may be more affected by emotional and physical abuse at the hands of my parents, than the fact that I was raped.
ACoA, adult children of alcoholics, and the respective symptoms certainly resonate with me, but at the same time, kind of invalidates the CSA I experienced.

I don't really know where to go from here, and another 3 weeks until my next session. Back to reading and trying to understand I guess. I need to stop lashing out at my wife and son. Yes they are doing things that are triggering me to react, but I can see this happening, yet I feeling helpless in stopping it.

Thank you for your contributions, they were very helpful, and untangling this mess is making recovery a steep uphill climb. I'm not even sure I'm climbing the right hill.
_________________________
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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#449964 - 10/12/13 05:22 PM ! [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
!


Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (02/28/14 10:01 PM)

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#449966 - 10/12/13 05:43 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
Adam A Gedman Offline


Registered: 08/12/13
Posts: 188
Loc: Canada
Thanks ST80B,

It is crazy, isn't it?!
I would normally get angry when I think about this, but it is just too exhausting.
I just don't have it in me today.
I can always realize, after the fact of course, that when I get angry, I'm the one who pays.
I am the one who's heart rate goes up, I'm the one who loses focus, I'm the one who feels the tension throughout my body.
Those who I get angry with usually have no idea, and thus are not affected at all.
Or they are the ones I love, and do not deserve my angry treatment.
Anger seems like such a useless emotion.

I appreciate your words of support.
I can really use them right now.
_________________________
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

Top
#450003 - 10/12/13 11:04 PM Re: On the hook - accepting blame [Re: Adam A Gedman]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3513
Loc: somewhere in Africa
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
I was very tentative about putting this up. Mainly because it is not really related to the purpose of this site. But I did none the less, as this is part of me. It is what I have to deal with. We all have our own issues to work through, and this just happens to be one more of mine,

those issues - that you describe as "more of mine" are a part of a bigger picture. nothing can be separated out into neat little categories. that is what we try to do when we dissociate.
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
Everything is setting me off. I know it must be related, but have yet to truly connect the dots.

i too believe it is related.
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
One thing in particular is an assertion that I may be more affected by emotional and physical abuse at the hands of my parents, than the fact that I was raped.

more or less? - those quantifications are hard to assess and i am not sure they really matter. i know i was severely affected by emotional and verbal abuse in my childhood. i know they did immense damage - it is hard to separate them because much of it happened in the same family context as the CSA. i have read that any kind of abuse is more harmful when it comes from a family member than from an outsider.
Originally Posted By: Adam A Gedman
ACoA, adult children of alcoholics, and the respective symptoms certainly resonate with me, but at the same time, kind of invalidates the CSA I experienced.

no - it does not negate or invalidate the other kinds of abuse. both are hurtful. many of the symptoms of both CSA and verbal, emotional and physical abuse are similar. and don't forget - having been abused in one way conditions you to be more accepting of other abusive treatment - less likely to resist or protest or fight back - because you feel like you deserve it. it is all part of the same big nasty can of worms.

lee



Edited by traveler (10/12/13 11:20 PM)
_________________________
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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