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#385017 - 02/09/12 08:36 AM Why didn't anyone stop it?
traveler Offline

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 4227
Loc: resettling in NE Ohio
So many supposedly rational and decent adults stretching over several years had the authority had the opportunity to be my hero and step in to intervene and stop the abuse. None of them did. If one time it had been prevented or reported, there is a good chance that it would have put a stop to the other events, too and my life would have been very different. It was like the falling dominoes – one leading to another and nothing interrupting the inevitable progression. They had to know what was happening. It was impossible to keep that all a secret. There were too many places and people involved either as active participant or as passive bystanders for the claim that nobody knew to be valid.. Can’t help thinking of the quote – “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” So if someone does nothing to prevent evil can they truly be “good”? I don’t think so – “cowardly” maybe, “weak” for sure. More like “evil” by collusion.

Mom – she turned a blind eye to the step-father because she couldn’t go against her husband – the provider, her security blanket and meal ticket. I know the answer to that one. I was the price paid for the family’s room & board and the upper middle class life-style.

The PE teacher /coach: He was a “good” man and nice guy – great role model for the boys on the team – no smoking or drinking or swearing. But in the locker room and showers when “his” guys were attacking me in full view of the entire class both verbally and physically with very overt sexual overtones – it would have been so easy and effective just to say – “That’s enough!” But he was silent and neutral.

The scout master – where was he during the hazing and pantsing and all the sexual harassment? It went on just as if it had been a normal and approved part of the scout program and planned activities: flag raising, breakfast, tent inspection, practice knots, persecute the tenderfoots. Some leadership qualities that were being instilled there – “might overrules right” & “survival of the biggest and fittest” & “mob rule is the only rule.”

Teachers – there were so many of them – could they all have been blind and always in the staff room? When I was being bullied in the hallways, at the lockers, in the boys’ rest room and on the playground – NOBODY noticed ANYTHING? And when I was targeted in class, did they never out of the corner of an eye catch that action or hear the snide mocking comments aimed at me and the resulting ripples of contemptuous snickering at my expense or notice my burning cheeks or downcast eyes or drooping head or slumped shoulders? Give me a break… I wasn’t invisible - even though I felt that way at times or wished I was.

And the locker rooms at the Y and the public pool… Was nobody responsible for what went on there? More of the same as all of the above – Were all the adults in town scared of the kids? Why didn’t someone take charge and put a stop to it? Or was I just expendable? Not worth bothering about? A small price to pay for the rest of the guys to have a little fun?

The “stranger” in the tailor shop fitting room didn’t really surprise me as much – that’s the way abuse is “supposed” to happen – a creepy older man who you’ve never seen before who gets you alone and does his thing.

But in all the other places where I should have been able to be as safe and untroubled as every other boy… especially “home” … I don’t get it!

Feeling like isaac again,

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

#385019 - 02/09/12 09:45 AM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: traveler]
phoenix321 Offline

Registered: 09/26/11
Posts: 912
Loc: USA, FL


They are finally taking bullying seriously in many places because kids have killed themselves and movies and media attention. Hazing is getting attention because people are suing. Bullying is very hate to regulate. Unless it is physical or just utterly ridiculous, how can it be?

Ending bullying starts at home. But, there is lots of single parents who just can't do everything. Some parents both work, have to, so it's hard to see and do something. Some parents just don't care if their kids bully or are bullied. Parents need to be way more involved with their kids to offer support from bullying and telling their kids not to bully.

I hated sports because jocks where most of mine. The in-crowd was the other.

To be totally honest, CSA is getting the attention because of lawsuits. Lawyers found a new goldmine and took the cases. It didn't hurt that the Catholic Church and others had deep pockets and are easy lawsuit targets because, hell, they invited litigation over stupidity.

Mom allowed my child abuse (not csa) to go on.

I was bullied my whole school "experience" too. I know how you feel. It sucks. A lot of it was caused by moving every two years. Military brat so moved often. Never got roots anywhere. Makes me wonder if that's yet another reason I isolated so much in my life. New school every two years. Real young it was new school every semester. Nobody cared about me being bullied either.



A guy opens the front door and sees a snail on his doorstep. He picks up the snail and throws it across the street in a neighbor's yard. A year later, the guy opens the front door and the same snail is on his doorstep. The snail says, "What the f*ck was that about?"

#385022 - 02/09/12 11:29 AM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: traveler]
westchesterguy Offline

Registered: 11/14/09
Posts: 421
Loc: Westchester County NY
Originally Posted By: traveler
...Not worth bothering about?...

lee, i don't profess to make excuses for anyone.

i did, however, come to the conclusion that i was asking the wrong question.

in my view, "why didn't anyone stop it?" well, overwhelming majority would have -- if only they knew what was really happening.

just simple example - and will use the gym scene.

p.e. class is over, everyone into locker room. coach is there, whistle, towel and all, looking out over all the boys. the boys are loud, yelling, fighting, joking, some of those boys are beating-up on a little one, kicking him and calling him names. the little one thinks the coach sees because coach is staring his direction.

but the coach doesn't see. coach is wondering how he is going to pay his $30,000 property tax bill next week....and wondering why his wife smelled of man's cologne the night before when she got home late....and how is he going to pay for his daughters tuition at USC.... i think you get my drift.

is coach failing his job duties to micromanage every single boy in the locker room? yes. in as much as every single one of us let something slide at work too that perhaps we shouldn't have....

life is very, very, very-times-one-billion difficult and complicated and then we die as a reward. we can't all be excellent heroes, advocates, saviors, survivors, fathers, mothers, teachers, lawyers, doctors, taxpayers, bread-winners -- concurrently.

something has to give and i think what it all boils down to is to set personal priorities as best we can and ignoring "things" outside of our world is not personal. its just a matter of sanity and survival.


#385024 - 02/09/12 12:49 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: westchesterguy]
Dar Offline

Registered: 11/15/11
Posts: 170
Loc: Missouri
Traveler, I think that Westchester and Phoenix nailed it.

"why didn't anyone stop it?" well, overwhelming majority would have -- if only they knew what was really happening."

"They are finally taking bullying seriously in many places"

Back in the day (shit that sounds old) I beleive that people were not nearly as aware of, or didn't want to be aware of CSA.

Even in the 70's and 80's I never heard of CSA even though I was living it. I like so many had no where to turn, or I thought I didn't.

Things are very differant now a days because we have spoke up and I beleive that we are helping the children of today by doing so. By our pain we may have just saved hundreds of children.

Will it stop all CSA, Not hardly, but now at least the children have more hope, help and a better chance than what we had back then.

All I ever wanted was a hug.

#385028 - 02/09/12 01:52 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: Dar]
Daniel_forgotten Offline

Registered: 02/07/09
Posts: 479
i remember a 13 yo here at MS 3 years ago. He turned to MS for help and guys here helped him. He was removed from home and moved into his grandparents. His dad and uncle were prosecuted and also was his mom for neglection. (not sure thats a word). as someone above said at least we can keep the hope we are providing new victims with some chances to get help and we are different from those who failed us when we were younger.

these boards also helped me finally getting away from main perp.. some months ago. otherwise, it would be the same right now

I'm really sorry no one did anything to help you. i hope you make peace with your younger self

#385030 - 02/09/12 02:09 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: Dar]
Treehugger75 Offline

Registered: 02/08/12
Posts: 159
Loc: Ontario Canada
These are all very true statements. The behaviors i demonstrated at such a young age would be more easily recognized, with the medical and media data, by most today. I was pissed but hindsight is always 20-20. WHY?? was where i was stuck for most of my life. I have big month long blank spots in my memories of the abuse punctuated by long drawn out disturbing scenes. I have no memories of my own residence in those early years only the home where the abuse occured. I tried my whole life to deduce WHAT happened to me without getting anyone else involved and finding out. Why was my minds way of getting to what. I felt a rejection when i cried out the only way i knew how at that age. Everyone in my life brushed it off as unintended sexual innuendo and me just being a boistrous kid who wanted attention through humor. It only takes 1 person missing the signs to make a small underdeveloped brain impart much more significance to other peoples seeming inattentiveness. WE are listening now. WE have made more people aware and the signs arent missed or swept under the carpet at the same rate they once were, not to say we still dont have a long road to travel on raising awareness. WHY was so important to me for so long it became an obsession. It wasnt until I accepted that there was no reason for it happening to me. I wasnt asking for it. I didnt put myself in the position. I was only a boy and was doing what I was told. It was someone elses fault yes but, there still was no reason for "WHY ME?".
Why was the hardest thing for me to let go of. Until I did i couldn't move forward. I'm sure I havent completely let go of why either but even loosing my grip, however little that realization did, has done wonders for my hope and commitment to getting better. I'm sure with others it is "Who" or "Where" or "What". I was looking for an answer by dividing by zero. It was UNDEFINED. There is no physical representation. No solution to wrap up the equation nicely and put it down on page. I empathize with your anger. My anger was always my outlet. I still turn green at odd seemingly mundane situations where others arent paying attention to the world around them. But my compassion for myself now allows me to put someone in my shoes and forgive them for their seeming apathy. It was unrealistic of me as a boy of 6 to expect someone whos house burned to the ground the day before was really studing my behaviour and looking out for me and me alone or attribute my destroying of toys to something other than the present issue they were concentrating on. The general populace would find it hard to accept the prevelance and disturbing nature of the hidden aspects of society we have a first hand knowledge of. But i felt alone when i tried the only things i knew to not break my promise but also share what happened. I beat the shit outta my self for decades for not demanding the attention my situation deserved. I should have been stronger, I was the bad one, a distorted perception but it was how i survived. Believing everyone in the world understood the dark underbelly of society. Of course that was a distorted belief but thats a brains way of moving forward. Had i not partially blamed others for their lack of intervention i would have held ALL of that wrath against myself or the poor little girl i was always forced into these repugnant acts with. I was the MAN of the pair. She the girl. I am the one to hold this. Men take on the responsibility. What 4 year old boy should look at the world through those eyes and expect others to see it the same way. My expectations of other were more grandious than realistic. But that was due to MY thinking not theirs. I can only blame the perp. My family and community did what they could working on a faulty assumption. I give them great credit for having the strength to do what was neccessary even when they were in the dark until a few weeks ago.

I will never ALWAYS be right, I wasn't wrong, I am whats left.

#385160 - 02/10/12 04:30 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: Treehugger75]
kb4 Offline

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 43
Loc: Saskatchewan,Canada
his name was Seth Dan
and yes...we did help him
and it felt so good ..didn't
I think the will to help is in almost everyone
yet the will to hurt is in a few
its a spectrum
with great people on the one extreme
and the worst on the other
I hope you heal..I'm sure with work you will...

good luck


#385164 - 02/10/12 05:09 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: kb4]
Avery46 Offline

Registered: 09/23/10
Posts: 1243
Loc: USA

You ask some great questions. You listed some very good reasons for others NOT reaching out. I hope asking these questions and listing the reasons will bring some relief and comfort.

I believe the truth is "in the pudding as they say. The ingredients were not in the mix a generation ago. We get to be the "bakers" of today for getting the word out about childhood abuse and how it affects us adults years later.


aka DJsport

#385169 - 02/10/12 05:24 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: Avery46]
Still Offline

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 7011
Loc: FEMA Region 1

For anyone to act outside of the land of "self-centeredness," they must posses one key element: Caring enough to do anything for that boys named "not me."

Lee, I had the SAME experiences and the SAME results from the adults around me. They ALL knew. No one did a thing! Not even when one teacher saw me pushed-down a partial flight of stairs and my books kicked everywhere.

One neighbor saw me naked in a vacant lot with all four of them..said-did nothing.

Look to human motivation for your answer Lee. Its what makes all things happen. I dare say if there were $1000 rewards for halting ANY child abuse, the police stations would be jammed 24-hours a day.

I'm sorry you went through that Lee...and I'm speaking from my broken heart...fully aware of what it was like. SO SO sorry!!!!

#385191 - 02/10/12 10:03 PM Re: Why didn't anyone stop it? [Re: traveler]
lapchinj Offline

Registered: 06/07/11
Posts: 1481
Loc: New York
Peace,Rainbows & Healing

Edited by lapchinj (03/17/13 02:19 AM)
Stick around, It will get better....🌹🌹🌹

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