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#55190 - 03/18/03 03:43 PM Just spoke to a rape counselor
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
I want to have some of my poetry considered for the reading in April in NJ sponsored by the Rape Crisis Counseling center there, so I called.

I ended up on the phone with a counselor who was very nice. She asked me a lot of questions and listened to my answers, validating the things I said and praising me for my openness and courage. We spoke for about twenty minutes.

I realized at some point in the converstion that she was the first non-family female I had ever talked to about my abuse. She was also among a very small handful of people to whom I have SPOKEN - outloud, in words - about my abuse.

I have written, I have posted, I have composed poetry, I have gone to therapy. This was different. Now I feel vulnerable, scared, like I did something wqrong. I gave her my address so she could send me information. I gave my writing pseudonym, not my real name.

I felt the same way after I joined MaleSurvivor ad saw my name printed in the member directory.

What is that about? I do not the "A" of adultery from 1700's america; I do not have a star pinned to my chest as the Jews did in Poland. Yet, I feel frightened that someone will find out about my past. Shame.

I am frightened people will be afraid of me, after all, in this society, being a man identified as an abuse survivor, the first thing people think is that you are dangerous. My own wife told me she was worried that if we had a girl child, I could not be trusted.

I think my survivorship is entering a new phase, that of wanting to change people's perceptions. This is very scary to me.

Ah, well, there you have it...I do not know what I just wrote or what it means. Comments are welcome and requested.

James

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#55191 - 03/18/03 05:23 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
wifenneed Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/20/02
Posts: 91
Loc: Michigan
I guess what I don't understand is people automatically thinking that because someone was abused, that they will continue that pattern of behavior. I have never ever questioned whether or not my husband would ever do anything such as that. My own mother had mentioned this to me many times while growing up as she worked in a Public Health environment and saw photos first hand of abuse.(she knows nothing of my husband's)I know it must happen, but in my own naive way of thinking, why would a person who had something so horrific done to them, put another child in the same situation?? Yes there are some who do, but I feel that is probably a very very small minority. My husband is the most kind man I have ever known. It makes me angry that a person would assume such a thing about someone who has been abused, in any fashion.


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#55192 - 03/18/03 05:48 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
MrEdd Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/24/03
Posts: 317
Loc: Texas
James, Read your PMs

_________________________
Some Things are not problems to be solved, rather, they are facts which must be coped with over time.

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#55193 - 03/18/03 06:25 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Cement
talking to a stranger about my past gave me such a buzz the first time I did it, well the buzz came after the terror when I realised that they weren't running away shouting for help !

I've carried on telling people, not everyone all the time, but when I think it's relevent and safe.
Althought the degree of safety I need is dropping rapidly. If someone did give me a negative response then I would either say what I thought of their views or walk away never to return to them. I can do without the negative view, although I make a point of listening to every view. It's the bigoted view I hate.

The buzz I get is from feeling proud of myself instead of ashamed of what other people did to me.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#55194 - 03/18/03 09:35 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
Thanks Dave,

I think I am just not yet accustomed to the 'buzz!'

Also, I have been accustomed to getting in trouble for "being a problem" or "complaining too much."

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#55195 - 03/19/03 01:11 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Cement,
we just BELIEVED we were being a problem and complaining too much because we didn't believe in ourselves.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#55196 - 03/19/03 04:02 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Jess Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/26/03
Posts: 107
Loc: California
Cement,

After I spoke "here" for the first time about my abuse, I was reassured by everyone here that I was not alone. Next I was supported by the brothers here that it was not my fault. This did so much to ease the shame and guilt I felt for the past sexual abuses.

I wanted to do something for men in my community who had experienced the same thing as I. After all we are told 1 in 6 boys have been sexually abused before they reach the age of 18. So, I knew I wasn't alone in my community. I tried to find a male survivor support group. I found none. I talked to my therapist about helping me form such a group. His response was well let me think about that. Next I tried to talk to people at W.E.A.V.E. Women Escaping A Violent Environment. They had many support groups, but none for men. So I tried to go about calling and finding a support group. I was led to a rape crisis counseling center outside of my county. I called and let a message. A man called me back and we made an appointment. I drove there and had an hour and thirty minute appointment with this man. I spoke to him about the abuse, about MS:NOMSV, about how I am not alone here and how it could be anybody who has been abused. After I stopped to breathe. He looked at me then hung his head and in a very quiet voice just above his breath he said, "I was sexually abused when I was 12." I put on the most comforting smile I could and I said, "Bill, you are not alone." Then I shared with him the statistics of 1 in 6 of boys before age 18 and the greater numbers of 1 in 4 of all men at all ages. He seemed like he was comforted. Then he opened up further and told me a little bit more, but he was not entirely comfortable. I could tell he had never told anyone in his life before.

My point is that I had to disclose about myself in order for someone else to gain some freedom. I am not afraid of the public disclosure because if anyone should feel shame and if anyone is guilty, then it should be the sexual predator, the perpetrators who will continue unless the victims and survivors begin to speak. We need to continue to speak and not stop speaking until the abuse that happens to children everyday has stopped.

You keep going ahead, Cement, and don't be afraid. You are not alone, and it was not your fault. Stop feeling the shame and stop carrying the burden of guilt that was never yours to carry in the first place.

By the way, after I became a member of MS I received my 2003 member directory. I found a member in my hometown so I called him. He was so glad to hear from me. We talk now almost daily on the telephone. We have decided we are a support group of two, until we can expand it further.

I hope this helps you. It has helped me just to write about it.

Sincerely, Jess.


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#55197 - 03/20/03 04:14 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
There's a kinda scary fear of the unknown in telling others our "big bad secret."

But the more we do it the less of an unknown it is and it is no longer a big bad secret.

It is a proclamation that we are survivors.

Having just started proclaiming this, I am finding it very liberating!

At this point, if people think I'm making trouble or get disgusted or something, well, that's their problem. I pity them & I move on!

But it has taken a damn long time to start to get to this point at last!

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#55198 - 03/20/03 08:32 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2259
Loc: Maryland USA
Quote:
I have written, I have posted, I have composed poetry, I have gone to therapy. This was different. Now I feel vulnerable, scared, like I did something wqrong. I gave her my address so she could send me information. I gave my writing pseudonym, not my real name.

I felt the same way after I joined MaleSurvivor ad saw my name printed in the member directory.

What is that about? I do not the "A" of adultery from 1700's america; I do not have a star pinned to my chest as the Jews did in Poland. Yet, I feel frightened that someone will find out about my past. Shame.


I never told anyone about anything until I told my wife last summer. We were in couples' therapy, and she told the T that I had been "hiding something."

I immediately felt that the T knew all about it. I was convinced that the secret was out . We had a habit of going to eat after the sessions, and we went to a nearby mall. I felt like everyone in the mall just knew.

Irrational, I'm sure, but that's exactly what I felt. I did tell the T as much as I had told my wife, but I still haven't told either of them all of it. And I haven't told anyone else. Just not ready, I guess.

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#55199 - 03/21/03 08:51 AM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Outis

Quote:
I did tell the T as much as I had told my wife, but I still haven't told either of them all of it. And I haven't told anyone else. Just not ready, I guess.
You'll know when the time comes, and it surely will.
We don't have to do it all at once. ;\)

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#55200 - 03/21/03 05:35 PM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
MrEdd Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/24/03
Posts: 317
Loc: Texas
Quote:
I did tell the T as much as I had told my wife, but I still haven't told either of them all of it. And I haven't told anyone else. Just not ready, I guess.
Me Either. But I tell more and more all the time.
I keep trying even though I am so afraid.

On a Positive note Rachel at the poetry reading thing found me a male survivor group therapy only 50 - 65 miles away. I may be admitted to attend as soon as in 3 weeks - Assuming i can find someone to drive me in case I am unable to drive after sessions.

_________________________
Some Things are not problems to be solved, rather, they are facts which must be coped with over time.

Top
#55201 - 03/22/03 06:56 AM Re: Just spoke to a rape counselor
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Ed
I started group therapy a few weeks ago and it's so good. It'll be worth every bit of effort to travel.

Our T asked us all "what are you getting out of this ?" and we all agreed that no matter how much 1 to 1 T we do, how much we read and learn or how much we share on sites like this there's nothing to touch the feeling of someone looking you straight in the eye as you share your life and it's history with them.
Especially when they look at you with that unmistakable feeling of empathy in their eyes, the one that tells you that you are not alone, and they know EXACTLY how you feel.

That's a feeling that's as good to give as it is to receive, it's a feeling that I look forward to all week.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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