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#441235 - 07/18/13 04:40 AM Recovery Is Possible!
Brian Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 05/03/01
Posts: 1563
Loc: Upstate NY
I've been a member at MS for a REALLY LONG TIME! I don't come here very often any more but I'll stop in a few times a year just to remind myself of where I started and how far I've come.

I read the thread "July 14, 2013" started by Cafeman and decided to send him a PM to congratulate him on his progress. After I wrote the PM, I decided to post it as a new thread just in case someone else could get something out of it that may help them in their recovery.

Here it is:

I just read your inspirational post and had to drop you a quick note to say Congratulations! Giving yourself permission to live your life to the fullest is a HUGE and very necessary step. Yes, You deserve to live a happy life! Everyone here at MS deserves to be happy!

I had a very similar story including self loathing, spirituality issues and lots of professional success due to trying to over compensate for my inadequacies but I still felt empty inside. As my 40th birthday approached, I knew it was now or never! I "refused" to live my next 40 like I did the first. This is a slight exaggeration but not too much.

I can't possibly explain it but as soon as I made that decision (this time) things just started happening for me. I'm (still) not a religious man but I don't know how else to describe it. The Universe just took over and I haven't looked back since.

Long story short - I broke up with my girlfriend of 11 years and within a week, I reconnected with a woman I dated in high school but had not seen or spoken to in 20 years. On our first date I told her that I was a CSA survivor. Fifteen minutes later, I told her that I was going to marry her. Seven months later we were married! We celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary having dinner at Wendy's (Yes,... Wendy's) in Reagan International Airport. We then jumped on a plane and flew to Kazakhstan to adopt a beautiful 9 month old baby boy! Daniel just turned 6 years old and is the light of our lives!!! He plays little league, goes to a summer basketball camp, started Tae Kwon Do a few weeks ago and is VERY happy and healthy. I've even had him out hitting golf balls with me a few times already this summer which has been a 25 year dream of mine - to teach MY SON to play golf.

I just turned 49 years old a week ago. When I first found this site 12 years ago - if you told me that I would have a happy life with a family of my own in a few short years, I would have told you that you were CRAZY! I had a 1000x better chance to become the Pope... and I don't even go to church and I'm not Catholic!

NOW... Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that this all happened over night. I've spent literally thousands of hours here on the MS website. If I wasn't working, I was here reading - EVERYTHING! I also spent 8 years in therapy with a great therapist that I met at one of the MS retreats back in 2002. My first 5 years of marriage I was in therapy. For the first few years, my wife had to vacate the house every Sunday afternoon because I started a small men's CSA support group. Needless to say, my wife has been incredibly supportive!

My life is better now than I ever thought possible. But that said, CSA never goes away. I still struggle with the affects every day. I've been retired for over 4 years and until very recently don't get out of the house much, with the exception of my son's school and sports activities. I'm 125 pounds over weight - the last 50lbs due to a 4 month experiment with depression meds a few years ago. I don't drink or do drugs but I'm addicted to chewing tobacco. I feel very uncomfortable around people and find it incredibly difficult to engage in casual conversation partially from my weight and bad teeth from tobacco. The main reason for my social anxiety is the shame I still feel from CSA. I haven't been to therapy in about 3 years, but I will be going back soon - I still have a lot of work to do.

I haven't sent a PM to someone I don't know or posted on the MS forum in a very long time. There are 2 main reasons why I decided to do it. The first, as I said before, was to congratulate you for giving yourself permission to have a happy life because you DO deserve it! The second reason is to remind you that this whole CSA thing is "a process". Sometimes this process is much longer than we would like it to be. When I wrote about that defining moment of "refusing to live like this anymore", what I didn't say is that I've had that same conversation with myself dozens of times before. Every time I failed to reclaim my life, I felt it to my core and didn't feel worthy to even try again. Did I just get lucky on this 50th attempt or was I finally "emotionally ready" to give myself permission to start living my life? I honestly don't know but I would like to think that it was all my hard work here at MS and in therapy that allowed me to reach that point.

I hope that July 14, 2013 was the turning point in your life! But if you hit some speed bumps or run into some road blocks along the way, don't get discouraged. Keep believing in yourself and the life you want to create. It will happen!

This started out to be a PM just between you and me. As I reviewed it, I decided to post it as a new thread because I'm hoping there is something in here that will benefit someone else that just may be "emotionally ready" to hear it. I hope so.
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Recovery is Possible!

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#441240 - 07/18/13 08:13 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
SoccerStar Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 915
Loc: New York
Oh wow, you're that cop who got to arrest his own perp forever ago, I read your story when I first got here and was like BOOYAHH!! You're really an inspiration... I'm so glad to hear your life has kept on an upwards track. Congratulations on building a happy life for yourself.... thank you so much for the update. smile

Matt
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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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#441307 - 07/18/13 11:38 PM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3333
Loc: O Kanada
powerful words.
there was plenty in there i needed to hear.
thank you for putting them out there, brian.
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Victor|Victim

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Love
Poetry

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#441316 - 07/19/13 12:47 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
Inspiring. Thank you, Brian, for sharing your story. I want to read your story of the "cop who arrested his perp"... anyone have the link?
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#441321 - 07/19/13 02:21 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
Brian Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 05/03/01
Posts: 1563
Loc: Upstate NY
Hey guys, thank you for the kind words.

I was involved with the investigation and was there for the interrogation but I knew, unfortunately, the NY statue of limitations had expired on the crimes committed against me. We did investigate the possibility of other victims. I was there for the interrogation and after a while, he eventually admitted to over a hundred victims (including me). When the interrogation was over, I confronted him.

My original posts were made in 2001 and are no longer available but I did re-post them 7 or 8 years ago. If you are interested, I will try to find them.
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Recovery is Possible!

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#441325 - 07/19/13 03:18 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
Brian Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 05/03/01
Posts: 1563
Loc: Upstate NY
I found 2 out of the 3 posts. I can't find the first post which explains how the whole thing started and why. Basically, in early 2001, I was the newly assigned commander of the detective division. My duties included the supervision of 30 detectives that were assigned all the felony cases in my city. While the murder, robbery and drug crimes were fascinating, the sex crimes involving children were especially difficult to deal with. This is what forced me into trying to locate the man who had abused me. I had very limited information about him but was finally able to locate him 50 miles away. I contacted the local police department and they started an investigation.

The Police Interrogation 6/15/2001
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=76196#Post76196

My Confrontation 6/15/2001
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=76195#Post76195
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Recovery is Possible!

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#441334 - 07/19/13 06:19 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3333
Loc: O Kanada
the confrontation is one of the most powerful things i have ever read.
what a unique and incredible experience.
i felt like i was there with you.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#441348 - 07/19/13 11:05 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
CafeMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/18/13
Posts: 150
Loc: Chicago
Hello, Brian. Thank you so much for your post. I appreciate it (and Happy belated birthday)! While reading your post, I could not help but to smile at your accomplishments; it gives me tremendous hope.

You are correct to say that my July 14th date was not an instantaneous magical recovery day. It took me 28 years to get to this point. I first received my spiritual awakening while at an undergraduate religious retreat. At that point, I was totally connected to my faith--and I still am. Sometimes I felt more secure with my faith by receiving daily signs from Above. I had little faith in myself and the physical world, until now.

Despite my spiritual breakthrough, I still harbored several insecurities about myself. I felt I was never good enough for a relationship, I felt very unattractive, I felt that whatever accomplishment I did receive was met by sheer fate, etc. From college until now, my securities made me excel by overcompensating. However, my fear and insecurities also held me back in several areas.

It took my approaching 40 to start reflecting more about my life. Even though I had these fears and self doubt, I was still emotionally capable to assess my situation. I then found this wonderful site, where I made several lifelong friends. I still had to hit my emotional "rock bottom" in order to pull myself out of it.

Last week, I was a mess. There were several situations at my restaurant that proved challenging, my mother was ill and I began a behavior that was extremely atypical of me. This behavior went against my core being, yet for about a week, I was very active in this side of my life.

So I immediately stopped what I was doing. A load was lifted. My mother was starting to recover, and my work situations were being met one decision at a time. That is when I assessed who I was and what I wanted in life.

I now know after 28 years that I am special, loved, intelligent, attractive and a caring person. I knew deep down that I had these qualities, but my fear blocked my realization. Now I don't have the fears anymore.

So I don't know if I may relapse by either developing new insecurities or having extreme bad days. However for the first time in my life my real world expectations are now in sync with my dedication to my faith. I feel whole, renewed and regenerated.

I took an inventory of my time this last week and how I progressed. Here goes:

1. I don't think about or relive my abuse.
2. When I do discuss my abuse, I no longer cry.
3. I forgave my abuser. Granted, I don't want to share a beer with him. But I can say I erased all negative emotions associated with him.
4. I have no insecurities about my abilities or talent.
5. I finally feel attractive and worthy of finding a wife and starting a family.

I guess I finally became the man I was destined to be. So no more excuses, let the living and fun begin!

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#441351 - 07/19/13 11:42 AM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: CafeMan]
FormerTexan Offline
Site Administrator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 11056
Loc: Denver, CO
Brian, how good to see you! It's been a while.

I agree in that recovery is possible. I found myself doing things a few years back that I never thought possible, and that trend continues today with dating a nice gal in Loveland. We'll see where it goes.

Recounting some of the steps in recovery:
-Professional relationship with a T for seven years, from '98-'05.
-Joined a local support org and attended faithfully the first two years, starting in '03.
-Joined MS in '04 and am still around.
-Attended a few WoRs which opened some doors as well.

So far, it's been quite a run.
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List of things ain't nobody got time for:

1. That


If I could meet myself as a boy...

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#441503 - 07/20/13 06:06 PM Re: Recovery Is Possible! [Re: Brian]
ThisMan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
The text of the confrontation was/is heavy stuff. It is a gift to be able to read that you stood face-to-face with the abuser and you told him what the results of his actions were on YOUR life. I could feel the energy and power emanating through your words. That was inspiring.

It did trigger me. First, because it is a story of abuse. Second, because I had a similar conversation with a personal abuser on a much smaller scale., but over the phone. Third, the guy's name who abused me was also "Bob".

Yes, I think recovery is possible. We can go on for lengthy periods of time feeling well, and safe, and secure and then BAM. Something happens that steps us back in time with the emotions. But, yes. Recovery is possible.

Thanks, Brian, for this incredible story.
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