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#57366 - 01/08/04 05:38 PM Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
lucentny Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/08/04
Posts: 20
Hi everyone. I don't know where exactly to turn so I'm writing here. I have been dating my boyfriend for over a year and he revealed to me that right before Thanksgiving why he has no contact with his family. His father was sexually abusing both him and his older brother. I don't know what exactly his father did because he TOTALLY JUST BROKE DOWN AND STARTED TO SOB like you would just not believe. I can't even begin to tell you how heartbroken I am...just simply imagining some monster doing something like that makes me so ill I can hardly see straight. Anyway, things quickly went downhill with our relationship...he withdrew from me....became very moody and distant. I suggested he talk with a therapist and he just begins to break down again. HE IS IN HIS MID THIRTIES AND HE HASN'T TOLD ANYONE WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM UP UNTIL NOW!!!! He says that he can't even form the words to tell me what his father did...so said he isn't ready to talk about it with me...much less a stranger. I love him so much!!!!!!!!! Just writing this is making me sob....and...I have no way to relate what he is going through??? I come from a loving stable home and I don't know what I can do to help him mend??? I've read up on sexual abuse....how it can be that much more damaging when it's from a parent, but what exactly should he do to help heal his soul?? Specifically....should he try to contact his older brother who he hasn't seen or heard from in over a decade??? Should he confront his parents???? He feels such anger towards his mother b/c he felt that she HAD TO KNOW what was going on. After he grew up, went to college, etc....his mother has NEVER even tried to contact him...he said that she is very very cold and never was affectionate with him or his brother. So, what is the next step???? What has been helpful for other survivors in coping and healing??? And, more importantly, what can I do to help him?????


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#57367 - 01/08/04 06:28 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
Caetel Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/03
Posts: 322
Loc: Paris, France
Hey !
I have read your message and I am very touched by your words. I am going to try to answer your questions as a survivor and also a pro-survivor.
I have been abused by my father (8months til 11 years old) and my friend has been abused by his mother.
First I want to say that in the life of this young man, this is a MAJOR change and breakthrough to open up to you. He must love you and TRUST you very much. Never betray that trust, even if you have one day to leave the relationship, always be honest. Always do what you said you would do
The thing is, never impose anything on him. The withdrawal that is happening right now is the sign that he is dealing with unbearable pain and he does not want you pity and he does not want to cause you pain.
As you rightly said there are NO words to describe what he has been through. It's like someone returning from a concentration camp, no human word can express the horror, the depth of the betrayal, the pain, the emotional blow....
That's why we, us, survivors feel so at ease with each other, because we don't need the words between us, we just know, we just feel the suffering behind what we are saying.
Your boyfriend is right to assume that his mother knew about the abuse. In incestuous families, 70% of the mothers KNOW that an abuse is going on (when the fathers are perpetrators.
What you ca do for know is respect his silence, reassure him as many times as possible, tell him you love him, tell him how you feel about it (it will greatly help him to connect with his emotions). He must feel pretty ashamed and weak and dirty. You can help him restore his manhood by continuing to see him as a MAN. Don't hesitate for that to ask him to do little things for you and thank him as many times as possible for being there.
READ ! READ ! READ ! books on abuse, male survivors, sex for survivors...Because girl you are going to need that help.
The recovery process takes time. I am celebrating my first year in therapy, my boyfriend is in his 5th year (but he is doing psycho analysis which is differentand longer from behavioural therapy).
He will go through different phases, made of progress and regression. The next phase will probably be denial: denial of the abuse, denial of the violence of it, denial of the guiltiness of his family, denial of his own memory...Your role there is to ground him into reality: you have seen him in tears, you have seen him unhappy, you have heard him...That's the reality. Denial comes back several times during different phases (it's an ennemy that is hard to kill) but at the beginning it is very important to have a strong support. I was lucky that to female friends/survivors were there when I started saying I was mad...It saved me months of agony to have them saying "no, this is your reality, you have been abused, look at your life, your fears....etc"
Confronting his parents will have to be HIS choice and that comes at the very very end of the process. The disclosure of the incest brings back a HUGE amount of fears (his life might have been threatened during the abuse and remember he was just a little boy scared of daddy). I went through a phase for exemple, after I had spoken out to friends and members of my family, when I was scared that my father would be coming to stabb me to death. So I had terrible insomnia, checked the locks several times. During the crisis moment, talk to him (the voice brings the survivor back to present reality) and reassure him (tell him you are here with him to love him and protect him, that he is safe with you)
There are phases of great despair, discouragement,lack of sex, lack of desires, phases of depression (usually a sign that something very important is being dealt with in the unconscious). He will try to sabotage the relationship to prove he is worthless (that's how the child explains the abuse, that's how a child survives the abuse).
When you feel ready, tell him about this site. I told Vincent my boyfriend I registered here. The way he responded "ah ? yeah ? " was great and so cute because he pretended it was nothing important. His voice sounded happy to know I was getting involved, I was trying to reach out to him, I was trying to understand (instead of getting mad) at a time where he was keeping silent.
I think this all I can think about right now, my brain is going blank, too tired but I reacted to your emergency.
I hoped I have helped you. Please don't hesitate to write in private if you have more personal questions. I am willing to answer also about my own journey. All survivors face the same journey, the only difference between us is time and providence (people we meet along that journey and help us grow). I was lucky in my journey to have met male survivors and male partners who reached out to me in the most incredible ways.
I am thinking about the suffering of all these men and I have again tears in my eyes.
Love and blessings
Caroline

_________________________
Mitakuye oyasin ! We are all related !

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#57368 - 01/08/04 08:51 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
lucentny
Every time a new partner arrives I get such mixed emotions.
I read about two lives so badly torn apart, and that hurts me every time - I'll never get used to that.
But I get so much joy from the fact that there are two people who want to get help, and I hope I never get tired of that.

What your boyfriend did when he told you was possibly the scariest thing he's ever done in his life.
His self esteem has been shattered, he thinks he's so bad and unworthy that nobody will ever believe him or love him.
But look what's happened ? you're still there, and I guess you love him because you care so much.
Wow ! what a start.

All you both have to do now is a hell of a lot of hard work. Sorry about that, but I'd never kid anyone that healing from abuse is easy, it isn't.

Firstly though you have to get yourself in a good and safe place mentally, it's time to think about counselling or therapy maybe. At least a trusted friend to confide in ( not gossip, he'll be gone so fast you won't know what happened if you gossip. But from your post I don't see that happening )
What we need is trust and support, and the best is non judgemental.
I'm not putting you off here am I ? No ? good.

The reason you need to look after yourself is that he probably can't look after himself properly right now, so he's not likely to be much help to you.
And if you go down, then the two of you will suffer.
So be good to yourself and take care of number one - "you"

Now that he's disclosed his abuse the biggest secret he's ever had is out of the bag, and he's likely to feel super scared now. I know that after I let the secret out after 31 years it took another few months before I could talk about it again and even think of therapy. But I did.

My wife didn't push therapy, I suggested it initially but she supported the idea after we talked about it. It was choice though.
And that was important to me, as it appears to be to all Survivors. I don't think we can be dragged into therapy at all. But support, love and encouragement means so much to us. It's something we've probaly not experienced too much of before, not in a way that we've responded to with trust ( from our point of view )

Boy, have I painted a grim picture here or what ?
I suppose the reality is start simple.
Trust, support, encourage and love the guy.

If you love the guy, and I know you do because you wouldn't be here otherwise, the effort is worth it.
There is a life with abuse. Maybe not the "apple pie" picture book life, but a good and vital life where anything is possible.

Stick around, the support and help here is the best. And please ask if you want to know anything. We want to help all we can.

Take care
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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#57369 - 01/08/04 08:53 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
outis
Member
MaleSurvivor
Member # 1109

Icon 1 posted January 08, 2004 07:34 PM Profile for outis Send New Private Message Edit/Delete Post Reply With Quote Lucentny,

Thank you for trying to find these answers. It is not easy to support someone going through what he's experiencing. It says a lot about you that you would be here trying.

That's a lot of questions and I don't have a lot of answers. What you can do is listen, if he'll talk. It helps me most if my wife just listens. When she talks about how angry it makes her, or it sickens her, or something like that, then I shut up and listen.

You will need your own support system for your own feelings. He won't be able to support you on this topic right now. You can't make him heal, or even make him try. You can tear yourself to pieces if you don't have some support yourself.

He told you something he kept secret for a long time. I kept my secret because I felt so much shame. He obviously trusted you a lot to tell you. If he feels the kind of shame that I did, then he might be withdrawing because he thinks you find him to be something shameful. Let him know that even knowing what you know now, you still love him (if that's true).

I hope some of that helps. It's only one person's experience, so don't take it as gospel.

Thanks,

Joe

--------------------
I need this site to keep getting better. MaleSurvivor needs money to survive. I sent my donation 12 October 2003. If you can help at all, please do. -- Joe

Joe, I just moved your post to avoid having two topics from the same first post. 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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#57370 - 01/09/04 10:49 AM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
>>>>Every time a new partner arrives I get such mixed emotions.

I read about two lives so badly torn apart, and that hurts me every time - I'll never get used to that.

Ditto for me. It hurts every time.

>>>>Firstly though you have to get yourself in a good and safe place mentally, it's time to think about counselling or therapy maybe.

I have to agree. As a partner of a survivor.. I can totally understand the feelings that you have running through you due to your learning of this. And it is a BIG compliment to you and the relationship that your partner decided to tell you.

If I can offer you 5 bits of advice from the point of view of a survivor's partner:

1) dont be surprised at some really odd, rollercoastery behaviour from your partner for awhile. The remembering/telling/diving into horrible emotional trauma causes some really, really REALLY bizarre and inconsistent behaviour in the survivor. It is confusing for the survivor too why he may be acting the way he does. YOu'll probably see a lot of "come here-go away" behaviour. with some anger, and a lot of unexplainable stuff. It is just such a mixed bag of twisted up stuff that it will take awhile to start making sense of things. And as Lloydy said, be aware that he may not be able to "be there" for you for awhile. Does NOT mean he does not love you, just that he may just not "have the goods" at this point to be there. And you may have feelings of being neglected, ignored, etc.. be patient. I can safely say that early on in my relationship, while I knew about the SA, things were pretty good. Then as the relationship progressed, major issues started to arise. Now 2.5 years later things are much much better. Much therapy and soul searching has gone on and we are actually planning our wedding for September.

2) get some support for yourself. Ideally support for BOTH of you would be ideal, but you can't force him to go - you can't force anyone to heal any faster than they want to.

For your own issues, dont try to handle this all on your own. Personally, I post on here, I have gone to a "real life" partners session, and I have my own therapist (I am also an abuse survivor - verbal/ emotional /psychological and we wind up "triggering each other" a lot of the time.

My partner also participates in various group therapy sessions, but took him awhile, almost a year or so before he could do it. I didnt push him to go, that is NEVER a good plan. (and also like you he is in his 30's and has never told his parents about the abuse, he never told anyone execept for an ex girlfriend and a work friend years after the abuse happened)


3) Be supportive and kind to yourself - take time to pamper yourself - those long bubble baths by yourself, walks in teh park, vacations, etc. are going to be even MORE critical. Dont ignore your basic health and well being. And if your partner is still able to doing things that are not hampered by his emotional state right now sometimes too, even better. There are MANY times when my partner and I are just sick of the whole thing, we dont want to talk about "life" or abuse anything and we just go and goof off, push things out of our minds.. act like goonballs, go to arcades, go for walks, go skiing, play charades, etc. Its REALLY important. As Dr. Phil Says "if you have a relationship where you only talk about problems, you'll have a relationship only full of problems" \:\)

4) Dont give up. There IS hope. But Initially this will be hard. Really hard. And at this point you may feel like you are standing at the bottom of a mountain looking up at something that you dont see the other side of. Have faith. Things wont always be the way they are now. Working through this with your partner you will learn some amazing things about yourself, about life, and about him. One of the hardest things that I had to accept was that this was something awful, and was something that happened, and can never be undone, and was never going to go away. I was so dismayed at the "finality" of it all.

Although I knew about the SA early on, my partner had had a lot of therapy, and so I decided to enter in a relationship with him knowing all of this. However, I was surprised when we started having problems with anger and vicious fighting early on in our rleaitonship. We went to a couples counsellor, knowing that the SA had a lot to do with our problems. I talked about this and said something like how the hell were we ever going to live a normal relationship after all of this.. and he said something that will stick with me for the rest of my life. He said:

"abuse is something that true, will never go away. But instead of looking at it like a straitjacket, look at it as a denim shirt." (I love metaphors). "At first it is stiff and uncomfortable. But over time, it breaks in, sometimes you take it off, wash it, mend it, tend to it, put it back on, and after awhile you feel more comfortable in it, and you learn to live in it, but it no longer constricts and restricts your life".

and my last bit of advice:

5) Back to the "pampering" point - Never lose your sense of humour. it will be one of the best resources you can call on to get through the toughest times!!!!

>>>>Stick around, the support and help here is the best. And please ask if you want to know anything. We want to help all we can.

Definitely. This place is great.

P


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#57371 - 01/09/04 11:04 AM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Blah.. after my long and rambly reply..

I'll keep that one up there (cuz I like it \:\)
but I'll respond more to the actual question.. silly me.. \:\)

I guess the only thing that I can say as far as how to help your partner.. The first thing you'll have to learn is what is your stuff and what is his stuff in all of this.

The key I think to being a good supportive partner is to be as "hands off" as far as things that are "his business" as much as possible. You can/will have the right to say things about how the SA is affecting you and the relationship (i.e. if he is expressing inappropriate anger, if he is pulling away and hurting the relationship, if he becomes demanding, controlling, etc.) but as far as how HE should heal himself, whether or not he should talk to his brother, go to therapy, read up on the topic, how he wants to go about healing from this, etc. that has to be HIS decision. You can provide him with names of resources, help him out with what he might need form time to time, but you cannot FORCE him to do anything. He's already feeling totally overwhelmed by everything thats happened to him, and he may start to see the pressure you may exert on him to "get better" as another controlling force in his life. Even if you are well intentioned, it may happen (this happens in my relationship ALL the time I try to help and my partner often accuses me of trying to control or dominate him).

And you may get frustrated not understanding why he may not want to go get help or do this or that, but his healing HAS to be HIS choice.

P


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#57372 - 01/09/04 04:09 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
lucentny,

I don't have a lot of time but I wanted to say welcome.

You say you come from a loving and stable place. Sometimes, for those of us who haven't been in many of those places, they are alternately glowing with unattainable peace and light and we are just so happy to be near them, and terrible reminders of what we think we can never have.

I have ONE (count 'em) good friend who comes from a truly warm and understanding family. (although maybe that's unfair cuz my good friend list is pretty short) And they have problems too, and tragedies, but there is a way in which (thank god) this friend will never know what I mean when I say that my family has problems. Sometimes that makes me NOT want to talk to him about what's going on with me. (sometimes it makes me want to eat dinner at his house every night, and take notes)

PEACE. I hope you keep reading and posting.
Sar


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#57373 - 01/09/04 05:29 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
lucentny Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/08/04
Posts: 20
I'd like to thank everyone for their feedback. It's been a really rough couple months for the both of us and we decided it would be best if i spent more time at my apartment (we were basically living together at his place). I let him know I love him unconditionally and that I am there for him....I think he needs a moment to be alone to decompress and I'm giving him that, but to be honest I'm a little bit panicked....will try and keep it together.

He said he really needs a little space to think things and he really wants to get help, but he said that he has been suppressing it all down for so, so, long he need to think about what questions he needs to be asking. I guess what also was reallly difficult for him to see was the fact he met my family at Thanksgiving and he saw that we were all close and very supporitive of each other...something he hasn't ever had...and I guess it just makes all the awful memories come back. No, my family isn't perfect, but I've never been abused verbally or sexually by them...I know that no matter what I can always call home and my parents would do ANYTHING for me. It's hard for me to understand how one recovers.

Does talking about it help because it becomes empowering to the person to know that it doesn't hurt as much to think or talk about it??? Revisiting it over and over I would think would just be torture, but I guess that is what is needed to get some closure.

My boyfriend said he is going to talk with his older brother who he knows was being abused by his father also.....they NEVER spoke of it and they were never close. In fact, he hasn't spoken or seen his brother in over a decade!! He thinks it might be helpful to talk with the ONE person that endured the same thing he did...am afraid that if he does meet his bro that his bro might deny it all and that would make things that much worse for my boyfriend. I don't know what the right answer is....worried.....I mean how would u react if you had a sibling contact you out of the blue (someone you were never close to and had no contact with for over a decade) and he suddenly says..."I want to talk about what happened to us growing up???"

I am so worried about so many things right now...just want to vent.

I told my boyfriend over and over how much I love him....that I'll wait as long as it takes (b/c he said he needed space) for him to sort things out....it really makes me sad....and very angry at his father...there must be a special place in hell for people like him.

We are going to try and do some fun stuff this weekend and smile and laugh....hope you all have a nice weekend too.


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#57374 - 01/09/04 08:00 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
Ivanhoe Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/19/03
Posts: 1907
Hi, Lu, it's David.

What a gal you are. I'm lucky, I've got a gal like you.
You've gotten a bunch of good advice from the folks here and I just have a couple of things to add.
Don't hesitate telling your boyfriend about this site. Tell him that you got a response from one guy who told you that this place saved his life. Tell him that I'm one of the older guys who had done therapy when folks didn't recognize how hurtful Childhood Sex Abuse--CSA--can be. Tell him that I've actually got some hope for the future; that before coming here, all I could do was think about ways to kill myself.
Tell him he can say anything here, that he doesn't have to have any questions at all, that he can just come here and tell his story, in full, or in part. Tell him he will meet the best bunch of brothers like he never had before, guys who understand and some who have been there. Tell him that we're ready to welcome him home, that he will feel a sense of home that he never thought possible. Tell him...well, if he's still listening, you might just hand him a copy of this.

Peace, strength and courage,

David

_________________________
"No soul is desolate as long as there is a human being for whom it can feel trust and reverence."
George Eliot

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#57375 - 01/09/04 08:40 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Lu'

Quote:
Does talking about it help because it becomes empowering to the person to know that it doesn't hurt as much to think or talk about it??? Revisiting it over and over I would think would just be torture, but I guess that is what is needed to get some closure.
All therapy and counselling can trace it's history back to Sigmund Freud, and he described the process he discovered as "The Talking Cure"
And although things have moved on, talking is what makes the difference. You're spot on when you ask if it empowers us, YES, it does.

At first the pain of relating what happened is awful. I remember sitting in front of the therapist for 45 minutes in silence, just looking up occasionally, but mainly staring at the floor watching my tears fall. Then I suddenly said something, I described in detail one of the things they made me do. And once that secret was out it stayed out, it lost it's hold over me.
So I made a greater effort and shared more 'secrets' and eventually they all lost their power.

I still have them as memories, and they'll always be there I know that. But that's all they are now, distant memories.
I won't kid anyone that I don't still have some problems even after 6 years therapy and a lot of hard work, I do. But now I understand the problems, I know where they come from, and therefore I can deal with them easier.

Even when I come here, and I spend a lot of time here, I don't think about my memories with any more importance than remembering my first car, or a holiday when I was a kid.

Healing is very real for many of us. My life was in bits up to the age of about 45. I was acting out, suicidal, dysfunctional, obsessive compulsive and generally wrecked. I held onto my marriage and jobs by the skin of my teeth. I hurt people and lost friends all the time.
Not any more !
I ain't perfect, not even trying to be. But life is good now compared to where I was.


I think you're also right about him contacting his brother. It's a rock and a hard place decision.
There is an excellent article by Ken Singer ( our resident genius ) somewher on the Home Page under "SURVIVORS" Click on that and 'drop down' appears - click on "ADULT SURVIVORS" and a list of articles appears. There are more under "PROFESSIONALS" as well. Have a look, there's a lot of good stuff there.

Disclosure and Confrontation: Considerations for Survivors by Ken Singer, LCSW
Click on this link to go straight there -

http://www.malesurvivor.org/Survivors/Adult%20Survivors/Articles/singer3.htm


that gives some good advice about this issue. A lot of it is written with confronting the perpetrator in mind, but a lot of it is relevent to your boyfiends problem as well .
If your BF does do it, just be there with support, whatever happens it's going to a mess of emotions.
Personally I would hold back and get some of the basic work done first if I was him.

He's asked for some 'space' and you've given it to him, although you're still there for him, and I get the feeling he know that. So you're doing fine.
If I'd have been pushed or dragged along I wouldn't have done it. My wife supported, helped where she could and loved me even when I was being a pig.
I appreciate that now and I'm doing the best I can to repay all she did for me. Sometimes I even get it right ;\)

It's a long haul, but worth it.

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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#57376 - 01/11/04 07:56 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
RICK57 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Loc: ENGLAND
Lu - you sound like the type of woman that a few more of us could do with finding. Your boyfriend is very lucky to have you.

I don't have a partner and it's sometime since I've risked trying to find one. I was abused by someone outside of the family when I was 12 years old and for 32 years kept it to myself (sorry for repeating if you've read this elsewhere on the site)before blurting it out to 3 of my friends when I was drunk. Let your boyfriend know that when this happened they were supportive & I was OK for a while. Recently my head just about burst - the abuse was going around my head like an annoying record on continuous play. I started therapy - I just about forced the Doctor's receptionist to give me an appointment because it was that bad. I was having conversations with 12 year old me and current me in my head whilst at work.

See the current version of myself has always subconsciously blamed the 12 year old me.

The main relationships I've had went wrong because:
1/ She saw me as a money bank for sometime whilst she was on a low wage - got a new job and bought everything in town for herself. Zilch for me and I continued with my previous levels of funding. *It took friends to point out that I was being used & they were right.
2/ Told me she loved me & we had a great time until she started dating her brothers best friend behind my back (she allegedly couldn't stand him). The person she hated had been working abroad tax free for some time & bought his own newsagents for cash - this ensured her sudden love for him & they got married.
3/ Wasn't meeting this girlfriend on a given night, but one of my friends called and asked me to go out for a drink. Went into a local pub/bar and she was sat with her tongue down her ex boyfriends throat.

That's just 3 of them! If you wonder what I'm rambling on about, it's the fact that some of us have serious trust issues. If we ever do find someone like yourself, then we can just sit back and wait for it all to go wrong again!

Coming back to your boyfriend, please get him to come and read some of the postings on this sight. There are many good and supportive people here. I've just been coming here for over a week now and what a difference it is making. I have good days and bad days but at least they aren't all bad now.

It appears that both of your boyfriends parents are still alive, but they don't much sound like parents. He will be grieving for the relationship that he believes he was entitled to. Every boy wants to be able to look up to his dad! Real mothers also protect their sons.

I think that your boyfriends brother was probably abused too (reading through the lines, although I am not an expert). Maybe he is keeping his distance because he feels guilty for not being able to protect his little brother.

_________________________
*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

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#57377 - 01/11/04 08:13 PM Re: Helping a boyfriend cope with sexual abuse.
RICK57 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Loc: ENGLAND
LU - sorry I rambled on that much there that I posted my reply instead of previewing it.

Just to summarise - I find it very difficult to trust anyone as I have been let down by my abuser (older male) and the women that I brought into my life. How I have so many friends sometimes defies me - but I never let anyone too close now?

Your boyfriend may only be able to tell you what happens when he is ready - that may be never. If he doesn't let you know, that is not an insult to either yourself or your relationship - it's just the way he deals with it. We all deal with things in our own way.

Tonight, before I logged on to the site I wrote a 4 page conversation between myself now (46) and myself as I was at the time of abuse (12). I've always blamed the 12 year old me for allowing things to happen although I had no reference points to prevent it. I ended up apologising to the 12 year old because when I think about it he had very good coping skills. Your boyfriend may wish to do a similar thing - a letter to his father might be a good idea. The letter does not have to be seen by anyone other than your boyfriend but it sure helps writing it down. I am having only my third therapy session in the morning, but I will use this letter as one of the main discussion points.

Remember it took me 34 years to start dealing with my issues - this site has given me so much back in just over one week.

LU - I wish you and your boyfriend the best that anyone can have...Rik

_________________________
*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

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