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#11521 - 10/31/01 01:54 PM NYC Conference

Hello All,

I am new to posting. I have been around the site for months - observing what people were saying and taking strength in knowing other people like me were out there. I was also very terrified in writing anything back thinking people will make fun of me.

I attended the Conference this past weekend and it was the greatest thing I have ever done for myself. Last Thursday, I attended the Mike Lew institute for Male survivors. I was terrified of going once again feeling people will make fun of me and look at me as the perverted one. As the day went on, I connected with these guys and have made quite a few connections that I will keep for support. I finally felt that I belonged. On Friday, Mic Hunter had a presentation and talked about breaking the silence and I was able to stand up and state my name and that I was sexually abused by my teacher. I was overwhelmed with being able to publically annouce it. By the afternoon, I was terrified by what I did but went home and realized it was the best thing to do. On Saturday, I went to hear an FBI agent tell his story of abuse and how down the road, he was able to arrest the abuser for doing this to kids. I was relating to his story 100%, a little different from mine but so close. I was shocked when he announced that the person who abused him was the same man who abused me. I was terrified when he spoke his name and wanted to run from the room but me not wanting to draw any attention to myself stayed and cried in the desk. I went upto him after to let him know and that is another contact that I will never let go. He has validated my charge.

I just wanted to THANK ALL THE GUYS in the Mike Lew session. You had a major impact on me and I will never forget all the support and encouragement you gave me this weekend. It was also great when the guys heard about my story that weekend and came upto me and embraced me. Like I said earlier, I finally belong and the feeling of shame has decreased within me. I am proud to be a survivor where before I was embarassed by it.

Thank you all for listening. We are here for each other.

TAT2BEAR - it was a pleasure meeting you this weekend. You were awesome.


#11522 - 11/01/01 01:15 AM Re: NYC Conference
Mark C Offline

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 39
Loc: New Jersey, USA
Little Red...I too attended the Mike Lew Institute on Thursday and yes it was incredable! There is nothing more powerful than when a survivor who has suffered many years of shame, guilt and isolation, realizes there are other men, many other men who have suffered this same fate as a child. Who has been dealing with the same after affects and is finally begining to deal with all the pain, confusion, shame and mistrust. Finally taking the time to heal.

I know because I too once felt this way. I attended the NOMSV conference two years ago in Vancouver and I know how empowering this experience was. It was so very important to me that I wanted to help bring this conference to New York and became part of the committee which put this conference together.

In addition to Mike Lew's institute I also attended the workshop you spoke of. The FBI agent, Jim Clemente who told his own story of abuse, I also sat there and cried as it hit close to home. I too am a survivor, I was abused by a catholic priest for years. I was told later that afternoon about a man who attended this workshop and the fact that he revealed he had the same perpatrator. Was I moved to hear this! I later came to know it was you. I am glad that you found this conference so empowering and I also hope that you will continue to keep in touch with all of us who shared so much that day. All those who have begun to walk down this (often) painful path of healing and recovery....well I I know these are couragous men! Thank you for being such an important part of this awesome conference.

FYI....the 2003 conference may be held in Minneapolis...but this is not set in stone yet. Also, NOMSV is holding its 3rd survivor retreat this April about 30 minutes south of San Francisco. I met some individuals at the conference who attended the most recent retreat just outside of Chicago. They said it was a most powerful experience, and one where they felt totally safe. I am working on a site here in the New Jersey, New York area for later in the year....I know that some of the guys from Mike Lews institute said they were very interested in attending...perhaps you will join us...thank you for sharing your experience at the conference and I hope you will continue to visit here and post your thoughts often. There are many men who care and can relate...we need to walk this road together! Thanks again...Mark Crawford

#11523 - 11/01/01 11:43 PM Re: NYC Conference
Stephen_5 Offline
BoD Emeritus
Registered: 09/12/00
Posts: 667
Loc: Northern California Foothills
What powerful statements!!!!

I went to Mike Lew's retreat in PA this July for the second year in a row. The feeling of being among brothers who have been through some of the same $%^$%$ stuff is just wonderful. I wish I could've gotten the time to go to NYC for the conference. The retreat in the spring is just 3 hours away so I'll probably go to that.

Take good care of yourselves, both of you.


I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center.
Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007)

#11524 - 11/12/01 06:23 PM Re: NYC Conference
michael Joseph Offline

Registered: 03/11/01
Posts: 2719
Loc: Virginia
I attended the retreat in Sept. It was excellent. I also attended the Mike Lew retreat in July, it too was excellent.
The best thing is connecting with other survivors.

Standing together is so much better than hiding in the dark.
***I am a three time WoR Retreat Alumni***
The Round Table, Men's CSA Group, Monday 7:30pm CST, MaleSurvivor Chat


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