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#463104 - 03/25/14 02:45 AM Guidlines for what can be expressed by a survivor.
sentry Offline

Registered: 08/12/12
Posts: 58
Loc: Canada
Hi. For the better part of the Winter I have not posted to much on any of the discussion boards. I have been present and keeping up with what has been posted just about every day. I have a problem. I am afraid if I start talking about my story and my struggles the stuff that will come out will damage others. My real struggles which are not pretty I could do harm to others. I have refrained from telling my story and have been very discouraged and sometimes depressed and extremely frustrated by this catch 22 situation I find myself in. There are things I have brought up in different one to one therapy sessions with different therapists and I seem to get this blank look from them . It makes me feel I am so damaged I am beyond all hope. Is there a mechanism in place that if I write or reply to a post that could upset or scar someone, will it be blocked so as to do no harm to anyone? I would not willfully submit something knowing it would do harm. I am not benefiting from this site like I could be because of being afraid to let this stuff out there. If someone could reply to this submission or PM me with some help and advise I would really appreciate it. Thank You for listening.

#463122 - 03/25/14 02:04 PM Re: Guidlines for what can be expressed by a survivor. [Re: sentry]

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3852

It is important you feel comfortable. No story of CSA is pretty, it is devastating and we all react differently to the stories. Most know when the story will be triggering and stop reading. Letting your story out will help you and that is what is important--you face the past, accept the past and begin to realize you are a valuable person, who has much to offer.

It is also important to find a therapist you feel comfortable with and can create a safe place to talk of the abuse. Hopefully the therapist understands and trauma.

I feel for you, I know it is terrible to feel afraid How will people react, how will I react. I know you will find many supportive and compassionate people and do not let those who do not hold you back.

Begin to share small pieces, small steps and over time I hope you become comfortable and safe--we are here to support you and we do not judge. We know our own story is horrific.

I wish you the best.


#463155 - 03/25/14 07:21 PM Re: Guidlines for what can be expressed by a survivor. [Re: sentry]
Jim1961 Offline

Registered: 03/10/09
Posts: 1201
Loc: Pa, but likely traveling...
A few suggestions (from a guy that can get triggered reading abuse stories):

1. Write your truth regarding your emotions (fear, anguish, anger, whatever). It's ok to vomit. In fact vomiting is part of healing.

2. Write your truth about what was done to you in NON-graphical ways. "He raped me" is much better than "He lubed up his xxx and stuck it in my yyy while making me do xxx." Don't get overly descriptive with violent experiences either.

Some abuse stories read like porn stories (to me) and are trigger me. Some describe in detail torture. These may or may not be healing for the survivor (author) but they trigger me.

Thanks for caring.
Loneliness is a power that we possess to give or take away forever. -Yes, Starship Trooper

My Story

#463255 - 03/27/14 03:14 AM Re: Guidlines for what can be expressed by a survivor. [Re: sentry]
Chase Eric Offline

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 2954
Sentry -

***Possibly some triggers in this reply***

I read your post yesterday and then re-read it. I wrote a response, then scuttled it. I started to rewrite and stopped and walked away. Your question hits so deep. Maybe I can share my own issues and that might give you another survivor's perspective.

The survivor stories - and have yet to submit my own - run the gamut from a single sentence of generality to My Story, Part 4, from generic words that only obliquely reference the experience to stories that seem pornographic. What is right or wrong? What steps over the line? Is there a line to even step over?

My story has yet to be written here. I never - as far as I can tell - had any memory lapses. In fact, I remember everything. Everything. The adult will sanitize it and say "he molested me" or maybe even throw the word "anal" in there. But that doesn't speak to the child. The boy in me remembers the whispers, the smell of his skin, the words he would say night after night, the feelings he brought up in me. He remembers details - the orange shag rug scratching his knees, the sound of his parents footsteps in the kitchen above and wondering if they would hear anything and discover his humiliation, staring at the cobwebs in the corner of the baseboards. He remembers the lump in his throat when it was done, and not being able to look at his mom when he got upstairs - a mom who would start chatting amiably with the older boy who not 3 minutes ago was fucking her little boy. I remember how clueless everyone was and how alone I was with everything I was feeling.

What happened to us was triggering by any definition. And I appreciate your concern for others. But I can't buy that we are to share openly and honestly and yet at the same time talk around the very thing that marks our presence here. Write ***triggers*** and just share. If someone doesn't want to be triggered here, I don't think thety would be reading Survivor Stories anyways. Triggering to me is all part of the work of sharing honestly. My whole therapy session was nothing but one 50-minute trigger session. I never would have gotten to the point in my own healing without serious triggering work.

I haven't written my story, not only because it is an intensely personal experience, but because if I wrote it, I would be giving my voice to that child. He would be my author. And he doesn't know how to temper things into clinical adult words that seem to talk around the experience. Like the adults who could not look at what was happening in our neighborhood to us kids - I feel like I would have to talk like one of them, in words that would not talk directly to the experience.

So I guess this is a long way of expressing solidarity with some here who are having a tough time sharing - as I am. I wrote an intro that I think I called as close to a story as I could get - click my signature box below to see it. But tjhe adult wrote that; it doesn't contain a fraction of the fuller experience the child remembers. I am very afraid of crossing from graphic to pornographic. For someone with boundary issues, I guess that's just another one I don't trust myself with. And if I do write it as honestly and factually as I can, and then if someone says it's too graphic - that'd feel reminiscent of the parents in my neighborhood who never wanted to look at it anyways.

Child sexual abuse is a crime that involves the senses - the hyperstimulation of underdeveloped senses in a person not old enough to understand them. If I ever share my story, there is no way I could be honest about it and not share what I felt and thought at the very moments that my life pivoted away from me - the moments I would try to talk him out of it and failed, the moments I was pressed into performing, and the moments I would be left holding a huge bag of secrets - and how all those moments sent me into a complete tailspin just when I was barely getting off the ground in my life.

If you do write, I would suggest that you share in a way YOU want to share, and not be concerned with how you think others want to hear it. It takes a lot of courage. Ask the child in you if this is how he would tell the story - if everything you share is true to what he knows. That, at least, would be my measure. And some day, I'll get the courage to share my own.

#463402 - 03/30/14 10:02 AM Re: Guidlines for what can be expressed by a survivor. [Re: Chase Eric]
sentry Offline

Registered: 08/12/12
Posts: 58
Loc: Canada
Hi KM ,Jim and Chase Eric.
I want to express my gratitude and appreciation for the way each of you have responded to my post looking for help and guidelines about posting here.
KM. Thank you for your validation and extending your support and understanding. I was reminded that we are experiencing our own recovery in the company of a band of brothers in recovery. How much better to consider how sharing our individual stories with the other survivors here than to stay a prisoner to shame and fear. I seem to have taken a long time to come to were I can believe I don't have to go it alone.
Jim. Nice to meet you. My thanks to you for responding as well. I hear you about the need to be considerate of the other victims and survivors here at MS in my choice of words in telling my Story. I have noticed some of what I have read here does read like a porn script. Our past experiences are different yet the same and it is difficult to protect everyone from what triggers them.
Chase Eric. Hey Chase. I want to say first I did read your intro. Thanks for sharing these passages of your story with us. Your honesty and openness is apparent and you really helped me sort out some issues and reaffirmed some truths I have come to realize and accept about the effects the abuses in my own life. When I read your response to my concerns about posting more of my story, I had to stop and leave my computer and dry my eyes a couple of times. You see I have a sister that is a couple of years older than myself that was raped and abused during the same time I was being abused. It is a very painful to this day for me when I think about her. I couldn't save her and my heart is broken. It is my thoughts exactly that in order for someone's story to be truly told it should come from the heart of the child who was so brutally and severely damaged. It seems to me to be a disservice to that child within at the very least to not do so. For me my memories of the abuses are still coming back to me. I ran from them for decades. Through the help I have had from therapy and attending a WoR weekend, sharing and listening to others in the chat room and the tremendous encouragement I have received almost since the day I first visited MS from Peter Corbett aka Canadian Irish Moose. He from the start gently encouraged me to connect with my inner child , that little boy I was terrified of. When I was finally able to travel back to the initial molestation as far as I know, all my senses where awakened with the clarity and intensity I felt when it happened. I have very clear visual detailed recollection and body sensations. The mental component of the consequences are profound. The stimulation of it, what ever it was to a child filled me with confusion and a profound feeling of loss of control over my own body. My personal identity never had a chance to develop and I struggle to this day with discovering who I really am. Thank you for sharing these painful details of your personal struggles and congratulations on your progress in reclaiming your life.

Thanks again to all three of you who responded.


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