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#382737 - 01/18/12 10:20 PM Keeping it real
ralphyk Offline

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 9
Loc: United States
I was abused by my father. He's in his eighties now and I still see bits of the monster inside him, but most of the time he's a warm, loving father. I find it so difficult to hold on to what happened to mety.

I've been through the whole big confrontation, the denials. So much easier to forget about it or pretend nothing happened. Of course, that was my only defense mechanism as a child.

Working with a great therapist who's gained my trust, I see so many ways the trauma is still such a pervasive part of my life. I know the making it go away is self-destructive. But it's so hard to hold on to reality of what happened.

Part of me thinks I need to bring the whole thing out into the open again. But it was such a mess last time. My parents and my sister pretty much denied the whole thing. Anyone else have any thoughts on this?

#382761 - 01/19/12 02:01 AM Re: Keeping it real [Re: ralphyk]
traveler Offline

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 4286
Loc: resettling in NE Ohio
Ralphyk -

I know the feeling - wanting someone to validate your memories and confirm your moral outrage about how wrong it was and empathize with your pain. You need to be comforted and cherished and protected and told that it's all going to be all right. That little hurt boy inside you longs for the loving parenting that wasn't there when you desperately needed it.

I think the main thing right now is that YOU are dealing with the TRUTH - whether anyone else does or not. Great that you have a T to be with you in the journey. Some day you will find another friend or group of friends who will listen and believe and support you. This is a good place to start. MS has been my lifeline in some very stormy seas. It may never happen with the fam. they have too much to lose and not enuf to gain - from their perspective.

My experience: My step-father died when I was in my 30s and just admitting to myself what he had done. I had just entered therapy and I wasn't ready to confront him then - and might never have been. I wrote him a letter and a poem after the funeral and that helped a little. I now think that even a face-to-face confrontation wouldn't have accompished what I needed - even if he had confessed and apologized. How can mere words reverse the damage of years of festering fear and hatred?

I tried once to talk to my mom about some of the things that had happened. I felt she had been an enabler and was guilty by association - turning a blind eye, denying, refusing to see, etc. She had no memory of anything. I honestly believe that she really could not remember. So that was a dead end. Now she has Alzheimer's so that will never be resolved.

Talking to my brother several years ago - he was 3 years younger and slept in the same room and was present when some of the stuff happened. He knows things were bad for me but didn't ever realize what was really going on or the full extent of the abuse - for which I thank God. I don't think he was ever touched. He doesn't think so either. i have told him a little but not all the details. Maybe someday, but the time has not seemed right so far...

Bottom line... Maybe you need to back off from the family and preserve your own hold on what you know as reality. We can't make our recovery dependent on other obviously flawed humans and their hoped-for actions or reactions. If they were the answer, you wouldn't be where you are now!

You'll find the strength you need elsewhere. You are stronger than you think. The evidence is that you are still here and are tackling the tough issues.

I find talking to God really helps. Always available and sometimes I even feel like I'm getting through. We have a rocky relationship but I'm not letting him off the hook - and I think he hasn't given up on me either - though sometimes I've wondered. I have lots of questions and that helps - just expressing them and putting them into words.

Anyway - probably more than I needed to say. Take whatever helps if anything and just know that many guys out here are on your side whether they ever communicate it or not.


Edited by traveler (01/19/12 03:09 AM)
How long, LORD, must I call for help, but you do not listen?
Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save?
Why do you make me look at injustice?
Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?...
Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails....
Habakkuk 1:2-3

#382765 - 01/19/12 03:03 AM Re: Keeping it real [Re: traveler]
ALIVE 3n1 Offline

Registered: 12/24/11
Posts: 76
Loc: Throne Room of God
Well said Lee. I agree wholeheartedly.

#382799 - 01/19/12 01:46 PM Re: Keeping it real [Re: ALIVE 3n1]
ralphyk Offline

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 9
Loc: United States
Thanks, Lee. It means a lot to hear your story. I also appreciate the insight about seeking validation. I admire your ability to speak with God. I ask for the strength to continue to seek the truth and light.

And thanks, Alive, for sounding in.


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