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#428193 - 03/16/13 02:15 AM How did you react when he told you ?
ThisMan Offline

Registered: 01/23/13
Posts: 778
Loc: upper south
hi, all of the family and friends.

I feel a bit awkward asking the question but I'm going to anyway. It just seems to be my nature these days. (sort of feels good to becoming open and honest with who I am). Even saying that, I deleted and rewrote... but goodness, I have got to be real on here so read on, if you will.

To set it up again in briefness, I am a survivor of CSA of many many years. But survive I did. I married, raised a family (and did an outstanding job of that- thank you), then widowed in mid 40s. My sons know of the CSA. Maybe not the details or the extent or the how young I was when it started... well, let me clarify. I only told them of the teen abuse. They do not know of the previous ten years. I kept a journal of writings that I let them read. They once came to a public setting to hear me speak of the abuse. (my only public address) So they are aware... and very protective. That part is cool for me.

What they do not know about is the ASA. I am certain if I were to tell them, it would bring a great deal of grief and guilt to them. They would think they should have been there, etc, instead of the friend. Sometimes I think that for me to share with them, my only family I would ever tell btw, that it would be good. Other times I think they would be so repulsed by me and what happened they would turn their backs on me, something I could not bear. However unfair that may sound, we all know its a possibility. And I would also have to let them share with their wives, one I adore, the other I hesitate to let know.

So I guess my question(s) if I can formulate is:

1. If your survivor shared with you his ASA, what was your reaction?

2. What are your thoughts of sharing with my grown sons ? One is ultra, one is moderately conservative. I'm just a middle ground guy, quietly gay these days and they know not about my sexual life.
For now we see through a glass, darkly.

#428235 - 03/16/13 07:25 PM Re: How did you react when he told you ? [Re: ThisMan]
HD001 Offline

Registered: 07/30/12
Posts: 276
Loc: us
1) I'm going to be honest. If H told me about his abuse it would be hard to hear. I think I would feel a wide range of emotions saddness, anger, compassion, anxiety. CSA is never a fun or light topic of conversation and the more you care for the survivor the stronger your emotions. However I still want H to talk to me when he is ready. I want him to feel safe when he does and know that I can handle whatever emotions come up for me. I would try to not say much but listen instead try to really hear everything he is communicating. And when he is done I will hug him and tell him that he is beautiful and I love him.
2) I am in my late 20s my Dad in his mid fifties. If he was a survivor and wanted to tell me than I would be honored that he trusts me that much and sees me adult enough to handle it. If you are close to your boys than I. Imagine they might feel the same. My dad isn't perfect but he is the perfect dad for me. I love and respect him so much. There is nothing that he could ever tell me about himself (and I have given this a lot of thought) that would dimish that love or make any of the good parts about him less valuable. My advice is to go with your gut you know your boys best. The magical thing about honesty is that when we show our true selves and emtpy our closets in front of those we love it gives them permission to do the same. If you do decide to tell them I. Really hope it goes well.
Everything comes from within

#428320 - 03/17/13 10:46 PM Re: How did you react when he told you ? [Re: ThisMan]
EagerLearner Offline

Registered: 01/04/13
Posts: 16
Loc: Midwest
I'm not sure that I can be all that helpful since - to my knowledge at least - my survivor has not experienced ASA and I gather that is what you are primarily asking about.

I can tell you how I reacted to learning about his CSA and how I think I might react if he were to disclose ASA. When my survivor first told me that he had been abused as a child I think my first reaction was shock followed immediately by sadness and anger. I felt rage that someone could have done this to him. I was never angry at him and I certainly never blamed him. I did not think he was less of a person. I felt closer to him for him having told me and I was glad that he trusted me enough to say something. I know very few of the CSA details, but I would certainly be there to listen if he wanted to tell me. I am sure it would make me incredibly sad to know the details, but I also think if he were to feel comfortable opening up about it, it would also bring us closer. I don't ask about it though because I don't want to trigger painful memories for him.

If my survivor were to tell me that he had experienced ASA I suspect I would react similarly to how I reacted to learning about his CSA. Shock, sadness, and anger at the perpetrator. It would certainly not change my feelings for him.

I don't know your personal situation and relationship with your sons very well, but it sounds like they love and care about you which leads me to believe that they would not turn their back on you if you were to tell them. I think sometimes it can be hard to keep everything inside and it can be good to have someone to share it with. Ultimately, the decision whether or not to tell them is yours and you have to do what you are comfortable with. I can tell you that I am someone who tends to lean on the strongly conservative side, but I also believe in loving people despite differences in beliefs and family is especially important. I suspect your sons will love you no matter what. I wish you the best in whatever you decide to do!

#428551 - 03/21/13 02:50 AM Re: How did you react when he told you ? [Re: ThisMan]
lucylives Offline

Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 367
What does your therapist say?


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