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#459649 - 01/29/14 12:56 AM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3601
Loc: O Kanada
i am in tears.

this is a tragedy.

i am as guilty as the next person for condemning this man without any knowledge.

my heart is broken.

another victim.

it is best that we are talking out our issues together here.
this poor man obviously did not have any support network.
secrecy is a poison that kills the soul,
and in this case it destroyed a life.

------- EXTREME TRIGGER WARNING!! ---------------

This letter written by Jesse Ryan Loskarn was found after he took his own life on January 23, 2014.
If his words can help just one person who is suffering in silence it will be his greatest accomplishment.

please read this carefully if you are sensitive.
i could not read it all the way through in one go.

Jesse Ryan Loskarn's Last Message:

Originally Posted By: Jesse Ryan Loskarn
"On December 11, 2013, I was arrested for possession of child pornography. Writing those few words took a long time; seeing them in print is agony. But I owe many, many people an explanation Ė if thatís even possible Ė and thatís why Iíve written this letter.

The news coverage of my spectacular fall makes it impossible for me to crawl in a hole and disappear. Iíve hurt every single human being Iíve ever known and the details of my shame are preserved on the internet for all time. There is no escape.

My family has been wounded beyond description. My former boss and colleagues had their trust broken and their names dragged through the mud for no reason other than association. Friendsí question whether they ever really knew me.

Everyone wants to know why.

Iíve asked God. Iíve asked myself. Iíve talked with clergy and counselors and psychiatrists. I spent five days on suicide watch in the psychiatric ward at the D.C. jail, fixated on the ďwhyĒ and ďhowĒ questions: why did I do this and how can I kill myself? Iíve shared the most private details of my life with others in the effort to find an answer. There seem to be many answers and none at all.

The first time I saw child pornography was during a search for music on a peer-to-peer network. I wasnít seeking it but I didnít turn away when I saw it. Until that moment, the only place Iíd seen these sorts of images was in my mind.

I found myself drawn to videos that matched my own childhood abuse. Itís painful and humiliating to admit to myself, let alone the whole world, but I pictured myself as a child in the image or video. The more an image mirrored some element of my memories and took me back, the more I felt a connection.

This is my deepest, darkest secret.

As a child I didnít understand what had happened at the time of the abuse. I did know that I must not tell anyone, ever. Later the memories took on new and more troubling meaning when I became a teenager. They started to appear more often and made me feel increasingly apart from everyone else. In my mind I instigated and enjoyed the abuse Ė even as a five and nine year old Ė no matter the age difference. Discussing what had happened would have meant shame and blame.

I always worried someone might look at me and know, so I paid close attention to others for any sign they might have figured it out. No one ever did. By my late teens I reached a sort of mental equilibrium on the matter. I couldnít stop the images from appearing altogether, but I generally controlled when they appeared.

As an adult I thought I was a tougher man because of the experience; that I was mentally stronger and less emotional than most. I told myself that I was superior to other people because I had dealt with this thing on my own.

Those I worked with on the Hill would likely describe me as a controlled, independent, and rational person who could analyze a situation with little or no emotion. Thatís how I viewed myself. In retrospect, the qualities that helped me succeed on Capitol Hill were probably developed partly as a result of the abuse and how it shaped me.

In the aftermath of my arrest and all that followed, the mental equilibrium I had created to deal with my past is gone. Today the memories fly at me whenever they choose. Theyíre the first thing I see when I wake and the last thing I think about before falling asleep. I am not in control of anything anymore, not even my own memories. Itís terrifying.

In my life, I had only ever mentioned the abuse to three friends, and then fleetingly so. I never spoke to a mental health professional about this or any other matter until I was in the D.C. jail. I talked with a counselor there about my crime and the horrible hurt I had caused so many people. I didnít talk to him about my past. I didnít think it mattered because I intended to kill myself as soon as possible.

The session ended and I left to be taken to a cell. Before Iíd gone far, the counselor called me back. He said there was something he couldnít put his finger on and he wanted to talk some more. And then he just stopped and looked at me, not saying a word. He was the first person in my life who I think had figured it out. And he was the first person I ever spoke to in any detail about those memories.

That conversation was the first of many that have already taken place, and many more to come, as I begin the process of trying to sort this out and fix myself.

I understand that some people Ė maybe most Ė will view this as a contrived story designed to find some defense for defenseless behavior. That itís an excuse. In some ways I feel disgusting sharing this truth with you because in my heart I still struggle to see my five-year-old self as a victim. But Iím sharing this with you because it is the truth, not an excuse. And I believe it played a role in my story.

To my family, friends and Capitol Hill colleagues: Iíve had individual conversations with each of you in my mind. Iíve pictured your face as I admitted to my failure and heard the shock and disappointment in your voice. I lay awake at night reviewing these conversations over and over again. They are among the most excruciatingly painful aspects of this terrible, terrible nightmare.

To those who choose to sever all ties with me, I donít blame you. No one wants to think or talk about this subject matter. All I can say is: I understand and Iím sorry.

To those of you who have offered words of compassion to me and my family: your kindness has been remarkable. Compassion is harder to accept than condemnation when you feel as disgusting and horrible as I do, but it means a great deal. Iím more grateful to you than you can possibly imagine.

And last, to the children in the images: I should have known better. I perpetuated your abuse and that will be a burden on my soul for the rest of my life
."

_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#459651 - 01/29/14 01:25 AM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1491
A truly tragic story. You want to understand yet you cannot. You want to forgive, yet you cannot avoid judging the wrongs. If his claims of being molested are true, he is yet another example of how CSA victims are marginalized and swept under the rug in a society where judgment is so heavy it preempts any truer understanding. So many must deal with this alone as children, keeping secrets as big as the world, and then somehow try to build an adulthood on that. Loskarn can never be excused, even in death. I think he would be the first to agree with that. But to stop the blame with him disrespects victims everywhere.

I cannot imagine dealing with such predatory urges. But I also understand that it has nothing to do with the strength of my character or the righteousness of my soul. I was lucky not to have that struggle only by the grace of God, but others who do must bear an incredible hardship, often very much alone. So that tempers my judgment. A pedophile who does not act on his or her urges nor engages in the porn industry even as a customer (unlike Larskin did) is an unsung hero. THAT'S where the problem stops. And until society is educated beyond simplistic stigmas and harsh dogmas, this will continue. Look no further than Penn State, where so many people flat saw it happen for years, and no one wanted to deal with it until it was so blatantly in their faces it was simply impossible to ignore.
_________________________
Eirik




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#459669 - 01/29/14 09:13 AM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
SoccerStar Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 918
Loc: New York
If his story is true it's uncertain whether he counts as a pedophile; the story about "needing to see it so I can understand my past" comes from a very different motive. Though maybe I'm not reading between the lines and there was an erotic aspect for him as well.

When he talked about "controlling the mental images" and building a facade that would be seen by others as cool-headed and rational.... it was really walking on my grave.
_________________________
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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#459678 - 01/29/14 10:01 AM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: SoccerStar]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3601
Loc: O Kanada
Originally Posted By: SoccerStar
When he talked about "controlling the mental images" and building a facade that would be seen by others as cool-headed and rational.... it was really walking on my grave.


that was the part that triggered me as well.
i literally burst into tears when i read those words.
i can fully identify with that fragile false faÁade.

i think his letter accurately describes the degradation and desperation and downward spiral of a CSA victim.
ritualizing and eroticizing his own memories was a mistake.

was he a pedophile? probably.
did he cross the wrong lines? absolutely.
was he a victim? obviously.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#459685 - 01/29/14 11:30 AM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: victor-victim]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: victor-victim
Originally Posted By: SoccerStar
When he talked about "controlling the mental images" and building a facade that would be seen by others as cool-headed and rational.... it was really walking on my grave.


that was the part that triggered me as well.
i literally burst into tears when i read those words.
i can fully identify with that fragile false faÁade.

i think his letter accurately describes the degradation and desperation and downward spiral of a CSA victim.
ritualizing and eroticizing his own memories was a mistake.

was he a pedophile? probably.
did he cross the wrong lines? absolutely.
was he a victim? obviously.


It looks to me like he's thinking "Mind Control". MKUltra means Mind Control. There are lots of them (unfortunately).

Puffer



Edited by pufferfish (01/29/14 11:41 AM)

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#459702 - 01/29/14 02:08 PM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: victor-victim]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1491
Originally Posted By: victor-victim
i think his letter accurately describes the degradation and desperation and downward spiral of a CSA victim.
ritualizing and eroticizing his own memories was a mistake.

And there but for the grace of God go I. I think it's important to add that such "ritualizing and eroticizing" may have been a powerful current against which he could not swim. In that sense, it was not a "mistake", it was a predilection. The mistake was ACTING on it. Perhaps the mistake was also keeping the shame so secret that he never sought help. The shame also belongs heavily to those who should have watched out for him, and especially to the person who abused him.

It is worth mentioning a word about semantics. Words are so important, and the English language offers so many different shades and flavors when it comes to words. Pedophile literally means one who "loves" (phila) "children" (pedo). As Matt points out, however, he "comes from a very different motive." But whatever the motive, the action that results is still an inappropriate attraction to small children. It is the same with the guy who molested me - he was a pedophile, because I was a prepubescent twelve-year-old boy and the girls he abused were even younger than me. But, like Larskin, his crime was not pedophilia. His crime was acting on those desires.

Until our society gets over this self-indulgent judgment thing with pedophiles, these crimes will continue. I say that as a victim - as someone who saw the shame that my own molester experienced when it was discovered that he was abusing girls. He got a lot of wrath but no treatment. Nobody showed him how to deal with his feelings other than to feel ashamed by them. Nobody showed him how to develop some character and self-control. Had someone actually done that, he would not have merely gone "underground" and continued with ME under greater secrecy. If those adults had exercised a more reasoned approach with a focus on getting him professional help, I would not have stood in as a full-time surrogate for those girls.

My molester couldn't help who he was. I just flat saw how consumed he was with his attractions - there was no reasoning with that. But nobody helped him develop the tools to deal with that, and so I endured the brunt of his sexual acting-out as he steamrolled over me. The only thing he learned from being caught the first time was how not to get caught a second time.

If I find a wallet with a thousand dollars in it and ID, there is no question that person will get back his wallet with every single dollar of that grand intact, despite my desires to the contrary. I won't keep it. I won't even pull out $20 and call it my reward. That is called integrity, and I suspect most people have it. If I fantasize about keeping the wallet, that does not make me a thief. My molester was like my big brother growing up. I may have been able to overlook his attraction to me and my sister - the fantasy. But I can never give him a pass for stepping over that line with me. And I can never give the adults a pass for taking care of themselves by not looking too deeply at it - just like Happy Valley, Pennsylvania did for years.

The ultimate paradox is this - the person with the toughest, yet most effective, job of protecting me was not the parents, nor the police nor the courts nor the psychiatrists. It was the molester himself. He could have been a hero if he only had the decency to respect my boundaries. That would have meant thinking beyond himself - thinking about those around him. But we were like toys in a chest that he played with whenever he desired. Like Larskin, this was not a crime of pedophilia. It was a crime of integrity - or more specifically, the lack thereof.

One more thing - in all this fascination with Mr. Larskin, how odd that nobody in the media is talking about those poor kids in the videos he had. I'm sure the police are tracking them down and hopefully can save them - but, again, I suppose it is easier for the media and those on the sidelines to point to the villains and laugh than to focus on the victims and save them.
_________________________
Eirik




Click my pic to see why I'm here

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#459706 - 01/29/14 03:08 PM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: Chase Eric]
BraveFalcon Offline
Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/25/13
Posts: 1147
Loc: The ATL

Hi Eirik. Excellent post. I don't really have anything to add but...

Originally Posted By: Chase Eric
Perhaps the mistake was also keeping the shame so secret that he never sought help.


I agree with this, although I think that when it comes to pedophilia, the stigma is so great and the issue so sensitive that a lot of people who have that attraction are afraid to seek help and are unwilling to trust professionals or even friends and family members. Who wants to risk seeking help or reaching out to people when there is a chance you could wind up being investigated by the police or outed in some way? I know professionals in the US are not supposed to report such people unless they have reason to believe a specific child is being abused or is in danger of being abused but I think that is largely up to the discretion of the professional. In the UK they can and will report a person simply for admitting to being a pedophile at all. So, while the best case scenario is for people with pedophilia to seek help/treatment, I can see how our society doesn't exactly foster an environment in which many of them are willing to. That is, until they commit a crime and are made to. Sad. Peace,

Ken

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#459708 - 01/29/14 03:43 PM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
Suwanee Offline
Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/30/12
Posts: 759
Loc: Southeast USA
I've held off in commenting on this story because it is so painful to contemplate for all parties involved. I'm rarely at a loss for words, but in this case, I feel soÖempty learning of what this guy is alleged to have perpetuated and his ultimate response to the pending charges.

Commentary on CNN.com about this story runs the gamut and strangely reflects my own internal dissonance:

Puzzling how some people can overcome terrible acts perpetrated on them in childhood while others cannot. Even more difficult is how to handle forgiveness and deal with/not ignore what are immoral and illegal acts against society. This letter is appreciated and highlights the difficulty in treating, healing, forgiving and yes..punishing our fellow man when required.

Ummm...sorry, but his own abuse history only explains but so much. He went so far that he was hosting files on a p-2-p. That's pretty bold. Maybe he did want to get caught. Hopefully we don't find out that he physically assaulted any children.

I'm in no way condoning his actions; however, it is sad the only way this man could explain things and reach out was by killing himself. I fail to see any other way his message would have been disseminated and if not understood, at least heard. He was not given the chance to get help before the media machine ate him alive.





It's still a tragedy for everyone affected by CSA and/or CP. The language of victimization he used in his farewell letter should be familiar to everybody on MS That is the chill we should all feel.

Will



Edited by Suwanee (01/29/14 03:50 PM)
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#459718 - 01/29/14 05:39 PM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
I have read the letter three times so far. (thanks, VV, for posting it). The first time, parts of the letter almost teared me up, but not quite. The second and third time, I felt nothing. And now coming back- I left for about 30 minutes or so- I still feel so oddly Övoid.

I suppose I am as the greater part of society in that I cannot step back into his abused past with him because of the decisions made to engage with the images of the children. Knowing he was a part of file sharing (if I understand correctly) troubles me greatly. Having sought these images out is confusing for me. I understand that a part of him, or all of him, was reliving his abusive past. I suppose I could pretend to understand eroticizing the past events as he aged, but not really.

And I don't mean to judge him. But am I? I am trying to understand my own reaction to his story and even his suicide. And I cannot. I am confused.

Does anyone else feel rather ambivalent regarding his demise, or am I just experiencing a rejection of something too triggering for my own emotions?

btwÖ great dialogue regarding the thread guys, and thank you for expressing yourselves so well. Wish I could.


Edited by ThisMan (01/29/14 05:40 PM)
Edit Reason: vocab
_________________________
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#459719 - 01/29/14 05:47 PM Re: Sen. Lamar Alexander's Chief of Staff Porn Accused [Re: pufferfish]
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5780
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA
I think this is the latest twist:


22 hours ago
Senate aide who killed himself left final message
killough.mugshot.4
Posted by
CNN's Ashley Killough

Updated 6:03 p.m. ET, 1/28/2014

(CNN) - A newly surfaced letter written by Jesse Ryan Loskarn gives details on why the former U.S. Senate aide killed himself after getting arrested last month for possessing child pornography.

Loskarn, who was found dead Thursday, wrote in the letter that he identified with the images he purchased because he had been sexually abused, himself, as a child.

"I found myself drawn to videos that matched my own childhood abuse," he wrote. "It's painful and humiliating to admit to myself, let alone the whole world, but I pictured myself as a child in the image or video. The more an image mirrored some element of my memories and took me back, the more I felt a connection."

Loskarn did not write about his abuse or say who perpetrated it, but said he only told three friends in his life about what he experienced. He also explained how he got into viewing what he called "defenseless behavior."

"The first time I saw child pornography was during a search for music on a peer-to-peer network," he wrote. "I wasn't seeking it but I didn't turn away when I saw it. Until that moment, the only place I'd seen these sorts of images was in my mind."

The former Senate aide was serving as chief of staff to Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee when he was arrested on December 11. Loskarn was fired and replaced that same day.

An affidavit from a U.S. postal inspector alleged Loskarn made several purchases in 2010 and 2011 from a Canadian company selling sexually explicit DVDs and streaming videos, the majority of which featured underage nude boys.

Federal investigators also said that in October, child pornography files were being offered for download on an Internet peer-to-peer network linked to Loskarn's residential IP address. It included a 28-minute video of graphic material featuring children reportedly as young as 6 years old, authorities said.

In his letter, which was found after his death and reportedly posted online by his family, Loskarn wrote about how tormented he felt when thinking about sharing his struggles with friends and family. He apologized to the victims who were in the videos, as well as anyone touched by the scandal.

Loskarn acknowledged that most people would find his letter as a "contrived story designed to find some defense for defenseless behavior," but argued "it is the truth, not an excuse."

He also offered a window into why he took his own life.

"The news coverage of my spectacular fall makes it impossible for me to crawl in a hole and disappear. I've hurt every single human being I've ever known and the details of my shame are preserved on the internet for all time. There is no escape."

Explaining why they posted the letter for public viewing, his family in part defended his reputation, saying the last month of his life was "a media frenzy, with what appeared to be the goal of destroying his reputation beyond repair."

"During this tragic time he had no voice," his family said. "But in his death he can be heard. Our society is quick to judge especially when the topic surrounding his death is so difficult."

CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

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