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#462305 - 03/09/14 11:13 PM Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member?
jas4159 Offline


Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 300
I was once when i was 15 - not sure what denomination of clergy he was. but as a catholic it had a very strong impact on me emotionally.


justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com

rich
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Thanks

rich

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#462417 - 03/11/14 09:39 PM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
KMCINVA Offline
Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 1709
Rich

There are several of us who have been abused by clergy--I a diocesan priest. As an altar boy and from a Catholic family the priest was respected beyond what they deserved. It does not matter the order of priest or diocesan it was all so wrong. But the connection of church and family were integral in many families. So tell on the priest was almost like telling on a family member of what they did. As a child we could not discern the difference and even as adults we needed to bury. This burying caused us pain no one else understands nor could we tell. Childhood experiences so painful were buried but the church, which I served as an altar boy was not nurturing or loving as I was told to believe.

I understand your words and sadly like you I lived them alone. As an adult when I told, adults who are supposedly mature and understanding followed the abuser in denying the abuse. But Rich as we heal we learn the priest and those that denied the abuse and us are those you need help and are the losers in life. Because we have grown and learned abuse will not control.

As for the church, I have made some reconnection because the Diocese gave validation to the abuse, to my surprise. I believe I was not the first with this priest. That has helped and the kindness I received was totally unexpected, but consoling and healing.

Prior to confronting the diocese some 45 plus years I was lost once the memories and physical feelings of the abuse took over my life. I consider myself fortunate to have received the validation from the diocese and to have met and reconnected with kind, compassionate and supportive people.

I learned it is people and not always individuals who are bad and there are bad individuals everywhere as well as good people. Cling to the good people.

Kevin

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#462432 - 03/11/14 11:16 PM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
DavoSwim Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/06/13
Posts: 333
Loc: Iowa, USA
Rich

I was abused by a priest when I was 11. I have written about it in several posts which are available for you to read. It had a dramatic effect. His grooming made me feel very very special and his abandonment left me crushed. I was willing to endure the abuse because it made me feel important, which is indicative of how badly I needed affirmation.
What is ironic is that in order to heal, I had to turn to the organization which caused me such pain in the first place. I haven't lost my faith although I totally understand those who have as a result of abuse. I had nothing to do with that, just luck

If you have other questions, feel free to ask. I am glad to help other Catholic survivors.

Dave

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#462445 - 03/12/14 03:19 AM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
WriterKeith Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/30/10
Posts: 951
Loc: southern California
I don't know If I qualify, but if it helps, my father/perpetrator was a highly respected Pentecostal "Holy Ghost-filled" deacon and children's ministry leader.

The indoctrination of likening the husband/father/master-of-the-family to God Almighty has had a tremendously demoralizing impact on my life.

It is complex when the assault is intermingled with religious indoctrination. God, who sees all and promises to protect all, allowed one of his ordained, earthly spokespersons to sexually assault an innocent child. Only until recently, when it was exposed, parents often sided with the abuser because of his religious authority and their fear of dissenting against the church. It doesn't sit well with a lot of people when the foundation of their faith is shattered with such a tragedy. It's much more convenient to dismiss it, deny it, and overlook it.

I am so proud of the many victims who dared to speak up publicly so that parents would be aware of the reality and the gravity of the issue.


Edited by WriterKeith (04/12/14 08:48 PM)
Edit Reason: incomplete reply
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"A burned bridge can be a gift; it prevents us from returning to a place we should have never been."
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#462455 - 03/12/14 09:45 AM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: KMCINVA]
jas4159 Offline


Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 300
thanks km.

I also have reconnected to the church. For me the final analysis was one man (priest) does not make a church unless he is christ. So for the most part I look beyong the man and only focus on the spirit of the chuch and gods teachings.

thanks again. i was truamatic

rich

justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com
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Thanks

rich

justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com

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#462458 - 03/12/14 10:52 AM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
KMCINVA Offline
Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 1709
You are correct, the priest is only one person. I must admit I began to unravel I had difficulty separating the priest from other priests and the priest from the church. They became one in my mind.

I was fortunate to meet a wonderful priest as I was to bury my mother in the church where the abuse took place. He was compassionate and kind. He helped me through a very difficult time. At this time I was being harassed by family members as I was to visit the place of the abuse. They see no wrong but rather believe it is normal in this harassment and abandonment. Thankfully for the priest and other family members I made it through the visit to the cellar a few days before the funeral and then the funeral Mass. If I had not met this priest to shield me from what was being inflicted on me by others I sense my ability to live would have been challenged.

This priest gave me contact information for the Diocese. It took me months to make the call and a few more months before we met. Once again I had fear as I called and was overwhelmed the day of the meeting. I had wonderful support from good people as I left to face my deepest fears and secret with the institution. As the meeting began I quickly learned I had nothing to fear because their compassion, understanding and validation were forthright and with care. They spoke of the emotional and psychological effects of the abuse, they validated my own dissociation and fugues and told me of more devastating effects of abuse on a child and an adult survivor of child sexual abuse. I was amazed at their openness and their knowledge of the long term effects of the abuse. They also offered their sorrows for what people around me had done to cause severe and long lasting triggers, flashbacks, dissociation and fugues that negatively impacted my life. They acknowledged many medical professionals do not help survivors but can complicate the damage because of their unwillingness to admit they do not understand or recommend the survivor seek help from someone who is qualified. They were happy I had found a therapist and psychiatrist who understood trauma and child sexual abuse. I was overwhelmed with positive feelings as I left. Someone who was waiting for me could not believe how calm, relaxed and resolved I looked. I expected a far different outcome.

I remain in contact with the diocese who want me to file a formal grievance. Many survivors find the process will subject them to a state of being the victim again. I sensed they want to get the bad priests but they understand the emotional impact to the survivor.

The priest is not the church nor is the church the priest. It has been a difficult road to rebuild but I am rebuilding and finding happiness. The validation from the church and diocese is what I needed after hearing from people you love that there are no psychological or emotional effects from the abuse. The church did more to help me heal than some people, but there are those wonderful people who supported me. It is ironic, the source of the pain, the institution, became an important catalyst in healing.

Kevin

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#462469 - 03/12/14 04:16 PM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
Jay1946 Offline


Registered: 08/08/13
Posts: 93
Loc: Miami, Florida, USA
I was abused by a religious brother who was a teacher in the Catholic school I attended.

My family was deeply religious and the school I attended was revered by my family. My Dad,Uncles and older cousins had all attended this school. I now understand why my nine year old mind would decide that I couldn't tell my parents about the abuse. I also now understand why I disassociated from the incident-as if it not happened to me- blocked and buried it for more than fifty seven years. How else could I have gone back to school the next day and continued living a "normal" life?.

I only retrieved the memory when doing a 12 step program and finding it impossible to "trust a higher power". I realized that I had a very deep seated resentment with God for having allowed the abuse to happen in a place that my family trusted religiously, and from a person that was supposed to somehow represent Him (in my nine year old mind).
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Jay

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#462600 - 03/14/14 01:36 PM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: Jay1946]
jas4159 Offline


Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 300
jay what is the twelve step program you are referring to?
_________________________
Thanks

rich

justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com

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#463785 - 04/07/14 02:27 AM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
imharpo Offline


Registered: 04/06/14
Posts: 4
Yeah, I was molested by someone in the Catholic clergy when I was 7. I waited for hours for my mother to pick me up after attending St. Peter's Elementary School in Kirkwood, Missouri. It was 1962 and this clergyman escorted me to the church bathroom where he proceeded to molest me. To my horror, I remember him saying "does this hurt? Well, how about this? Does this hurt? Realizing my ride wasn't arriving, I ran home. When I told my mother what the man did, she made no comment, and did not seem to want to hear such a thing. I never could understand why she would not do anything about it. It really warped my head for more than a few years. I just did not like myself after that and wondered what was wrong with me. I have moved on with life, but feel that it wouldn't hurt to share the story.

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#463876 - 04/08/14 09:35 PM Re: Has anyone else been abused by a clergy member? [Re: jas4159]
mvnforwrd Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 216
Loc: NJ
i was and his name is Father (fuckface) Mac...Catholic priest and the Catholic hi beings new about his behavior so there just as guilty...
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