I think I may have told you this already in one of our many talks, but here goes again. By the time I was 14 I was such a wreck that yes, I looked forward to the abuse and was grateful for it while it was happening. The reason was that all the rest of my life consisted of lying, pretending, hiding, keeping the secret, and wondering when "it" would happen next. When the next episode did occur, I was flooded with relief; I could just relax and be worthless me for the next hour or so. I didn't have to worry about when the next time would be - it was now.

And yes, there were many times after the abuse ended when I totally despaired. I had thought that being safe at last would mean the end of my troubles, but in fact they just got worse as I collapsed under the strain of all the confusion, self-hatred, fear and acting out.

I don't think I ever felt like I was being "cared for" by the abuser, but yes, I can relate to what you are saying, Jarrad. Let me assure you that one day you will realize that all those good feelings were illusory; no one who really cares about a boy would do what the abusers did to us, though yes, it is natural that we would want to hang on to those illusions for as long as possible. The alternative is so difficult to accept, however true we may know it to be. We're with you as you deal with all this, okay?

Much love,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)