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#389114 - 03/13/12 02:47 AM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: Geeders]
pufferfish Offline

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Pictures of ourselves can bring up memories of shame and hurt. I've know several folks who have destroyed them because of that.

Actually I think it would be better to put the pictures away for awhile because a little bit later they will be invaluable in sorting out all the details. Pictures helped me greatly in my own memory work. I had to figure out what happened when. They became important in recovery.


#389142 - 03/13/12 09:09 AM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: pufferfish]
Anniemy4sons Offline

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 98
Loc: NJ
It can't hurt to scan them into a folder or on a jump drive is better. Don't let him know. Just scan them and put the jump drive away. In a few months/years down the road when you sense he's "there" or if he expresses regret about the pictures, you can give him the jump drive.
But once they're gone... they're gone. preserve them just in case. My husband said they helped with his therapy. Seeing the little boy. Reflecting or memories resurfacing. He actually said it wasn't all bad...

God is my teacher, Jesus my comfort and the Holy Spirit my protector.
I AM Listening...

Thank you Mother Mary.
Pray the Rosary every day.


#389149 - 03/13/12 10:25 AM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: penelope_c]
Still Offline

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 7011
Loc: FEMA Region 1
Originally Posted By: penelope_c
...destroying all his personal pictures from those ages last night as well.

I was wondering if this is common, and if I should try to save any as he might want them down the road. I could scan them to a folder that he wouldn't have to see.

I don't know what to do and I'm worried he's going to do more destructive things. He goes to the therapist again tomorrow.
Thanks for listening.


From the moment they came back from the photo-processor, I could not bare to ever look at my childhood pictures. My avatar you see here was from just a week or so before things got even worse than the first rape. I never looked at that picture until I began working on my stuff.

When I grew-up and left home, my mother had one of her domestic helpers put all my surviving pics into two photo-albums and send them to me. I say 'surviving' because I use to intercept them in the mail and destroy them as a child, leaving only the pictures without the 'little monster.'

As for the assembled albums; I wanted to throw them away. Looking at any picture of me was like concentrated cryptonite.

I hated (as in hated) that kid in those pictures. I was sickened by him.

The night I disclosed the abuse to my wife, we got those albums out, sat on the floor and I looked at 'him' for the first time ever...really looked at him.

He was not the fowl monster I remembered him to be.

Your husband (IMO) will come to regret destroying those pictures I fear. However, if you do scan them, do it covertly and do not tell him about them until he verbalizes regret.

#389176 - 03/13/12 04:06 PM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: Geeders]
penelope_c Offline

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 4
Jim, Robbie - everyone - thank you so much. I realize looking back at my first post that "I am glad you are all here" sounds absolutely awful. I appreciate you overlooking that as I am sure many have come here for the first time and said something similar, the relief I feel that there is help is overwhelming, it truly is.

By consensus I think I did the right thing. Before my husband comes home today I will ask him if he wants me to move the two remaining pictures or leave them where they are.

Last night he was on his way home from a business trip and stopped for the night in his old hometown. This morning he went by several of the houses where the abuse occurred. It seems like this is all pouring out of him so fast right now - pictures, houses - it's like a tidal wave. He called me as he was driving home, furious at those houses, wanting to destroy them. I gently suggested that maybe his anger might be best directed at the person who hurt him and not at physical structures. Just that - no lecture, no elaboration. I am trying so hard not to be a therapist or evoke more pain, I don't know what the right thing to say is.

Because of his detour this morning he is driving straight to the therapist's and won't have time to come home first. We agreed that I will meet him there after his appointment and go spend the afternoon at one of his favorite places in the country. It was his escape then, and feels safe now.

Please let me know from your points of view, what I can best do for him. The therapist tells me to love him, listen to him and not press him. That's what I'm trying to do, but it's hard not to point out faulty thinking, like blaming himself. I am NOT asking for details or pressing him on anything. I am not taking anything personally as I know he is in an enormous amount of pain. The fact that he chose to tell me this information after all these years speaks volumes about our relationship and should give me all the reassurance I need that we can make it through this.

I am hoping he can come here, and if I ask him to not read the F&F section, I think he will be ok with that. He needs to connect with other survivors, that's what I'm feeling right now. I love him so much I cannot stand to see him hurting so badly.

Thank you again for all your help. I am glad there is a place where we can go and anonymously connect with other survivors and family members. This is a new beginning, but a very, very painful one.


#389179 - 03/13/12 04:30 PM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: penelope_c]
unhappycamper Offline

Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 756
Loc: VA
Those old photos may be the only truth we have from our childhood. Some of us find them too disturbing, while others find them reassuring. I agree with the others that you should save a few scans and let your Hub do whatever he wants with them.

One other idea might be to suggest that he take a few of the photos to his therapy session to discuss.


p.s.: I wouldn't destroy MY photos, though I wish I could time-travel and replace the hideous shirts my mother bought me in the 1950s (see avatar)! ;^}

#389183 - 03/13/12 04:55 PM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: penelope_c]
1islandboy Offline

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 906
Loc: washington

Before I arrived here , I drank for oblivion and pretty much found it...(losing all sense of self)...

There is no doubt that the recovery road can sometimes get rough...(damn rough)...but I have also found gifts along the way...

One of my personal gifts is finding myself comfortable in my own skin...but I digress...

When I got here...I had no idea what hypervigilance ~or~ dissociation even meant...

I stuffed my memories so F!@#$%^ far down...never to see the light of day...

Until I entered recovery....(it was then, that I not only got sober, but also started to confront my issues).

I literally inhaled recovery books at a blistering pace and pretty much drove myself pretty psychotic in the process...


If there was any advice I had to give...

It would probably honor ones own personal pace....( as this is not a race)...

Painful as it was...the inward journey remains the best trip I ever took...

Boys don't cry (Plumb)


Rise above the storm and you will find the sunshine ~ M.F. Fernandez

#389196 - 03/13/12 10:37 PM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: 1islandboy]
Gretta Offline

Registered: 09/18/11
Posts: 240
When my husband was going through it I constantly spoke to the little boy in side of him. I have boys so it was natural. Not sure if it was right but I constantly reminded him it was not his fault, that he was a beautiful little boy who deserved so much more, and I was sorry I wasn't there to protect him (stupid I know we are the same age). It was heart breaking, it made me want to dig up his child molesting bastard of a father. Good luck

#389209 - 03/14/12 02:04 AM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: Gretta]
penelope_c Offline

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 4
Oh Gretta - thank you, that is so interesting! I think I have been doing exactly that, it just feels natural. When things get rough I just keep saying those exact sort of things. We have a 10 year old boy so I can just picture what I would be saying to him.

#389214 - 03/14/12 02:50 AM Re: Husband destroyed his pictures last night [Re: penelope_c]
peroperic2009 Offline

Registered: 10/09/11
Posts: 3863
Loc: South-East Europe
Daer Gretta and Penelope,
by speaking to your husbands and seeing small boy inside them, you both are sharing huge amount of empathy, love and compassion. It is desirable to act like that, you both have great instincts and follow them further.
It is sign for me that you both have had beautiful and warm families and childhoods.

Gretta you must be very warm mum (and it is not stupid what you are feeling toward your H, please never judge your feelings, they are too precious for that) your sons and husband are blessed wink!

Keep pace in that direction, you both are doing great support to your beloved ones!!!


My story

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