Dear EdfromNYC:

I just read your posting in the Male Survivor forum and it spoke to me. Thank you for understanding and for appreciating the efforts of supporters to understand what they've never experienced. What you wrote is so, so, so true.

So I hope it's okay I quote it here and underline some really great parts:

"This is not to take away from the frustration vented on here. I respect it and understand it and I have had it but I have been seeking help with those who DO understand and that is giving me the courage to come forth with those who have no idea of what the effects of CSA are and how incredibly devastating, debilitating and life-changing they can be (at least for me).

"I'm not as mad at others as I used to be for not understanding it. If it didn't happen to them, why would they try to understand it unless they know and care about someone that it happened to? The only way that happens is if I talk about it.

"Its up to me to process through the confusion and feelings and report on it clearly and openly to others and add my experience to general melting pot. The more clarity and freedom I get, the more I can let others know what it did to me, how it happened, how it went unnoticed and how I got past it. For me, I do have some friends who are interested in it and I'm also in a mens' survivor group and it is helping to simply relate openly about what happened. Talking with other men about something that I kept a secret for 30+ years is making it possible for me to start being able to see talking about it outside the group which is really my goal.

"Its a crime of secrecy and shame and confusion and its been really hard to understand myself what happened and its taken many years so how can I expect others to understand something that I might not even understand? The more I understand it, the easier it is to envision talking about it. One of my actual goals of going to therapy about this is to be able to talk about this in a way that I am comfortable with and in a way that might help others.

Thank you again so much for this. I wish my friend could explain to me. I've asked and asked and asked, and spent so much time reading, trying to understand, and it's so slow. And he told me first, after apparently 35 years. But so little, that I didn't know what to do, what to say, how to help.

Thank you for your compassion and appreciation.