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#4985 - 10/10/05 02:58 AM 3 things you'd want others to know
Livingfaraway Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 1
Hi all. New to this. Got directed to MS from a friend who shares a survivors' support group w/ me. I'm presenting on this topic at a teacher's conference & want to know, from my fellow survivors, what are 3 things you want other people to know about you, as a survivor?

Whatcha think?

#4986 - 10/10/05 03:05 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7821
1. Don't tell me to "get over it".
2. Understand that it's affected me in every way I relate to others.
3. Ask me sometime how I'm doing.

Good thread.


#4987 - 10/10/05 03:13 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
RICK57 Offline

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
1/ Sometimes I am the quiet bloke that hides in the corner - sometimes I am the one making all the noise. This thing does not distinguish between those extremes.

2/ I am the under achiever that everyone else considers is an achiever.

3/ I never asked for any of this - I had zero frames of reference at 12 years old to avoid it!

Best wishes..Rik

*Never look down on anybody unless you're helping them up.
*I was seeking a way of expressing my anger - I found hope!
*There are many battles before the war is won! It can be won!

#4988 - 10/10/05 03:40 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
WalkingSouth Offline

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16270
Loc: Waldport, Oregon
1. I want them to know how bad it hurts sometimes.

2. I want them to know the devastating affect it has on a persons ability to understand life from a "normal" perspective.

3. Most importantly, I want them to understand that children are not expendable objects. Above all else, they are to be loved, protected, and nurtured.

Excellent thread.



"Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting 'Holy Shit! What a ride!'" ~Hunter S. Thompson

#4989 - 10/10/05 05:39 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
1. I am more than a survivor of sexual abuse.

2. I think I have been a good father to my children.

3. What happened to me as a kid is still with me every day. It takes years of work and professional help to cope with this.

Good idea for a thread,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#4990 - 10/10/05 07:57 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
andrew76 Offline

Registered: 10/01/02
Posts: 118
Loc: Florida
1.just because I am a survivor of abuse does not mean that I can't move past the abuse and be a better man

2.Men of abuse can make something of themselves and can be productive members of this world.

3.Children of abuse need to be heard not just seen and it does not take a professional to help the abused start the healing process all though it does help to have someone who understands the after effects of the abuse in a position to implement open dialogue with the abused.The person being disclosed to needs to know how and when to disclose to those that can help in a legal manner.


Eye of tiger stares down perp,tiger teeth rips perp to shreds
to be abused kills the soul
to survive is to live the ultimate punishment

Knocking on hells door!!

To be silenced is an American amendment right violation,free speech

#4991 - 10/10/05 08:55 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Nobbynobs Offline

Registered: 06/26/05
Posts: 1286
Loc: Toronto
1. Kool-Aid and Big Macs are really bad for you but they taste great so have them if you want.

2. Listen, I mean REALLY listen, to your children.

3. Not everyone who shits on you is your enemy, and not everyone who helps you out of shit is your friend.

When you go up to the bell, ring it! Or don't go up to the bell.

- Mel Brooks

#4992 - 10/10/05 09:39 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Dewey2k Offline

Registered: 08/22/05
Posts: 3069
1. SA is something that happened to me. Although it has affected me in terrible and profound ways, it is not the sum total of who I am.

2. Children deserve your love and attention. Remember how it felt when you were their age and wanted your parents' attention when they ask for yours, and give it to them. If you can't, then save some lives and don't have children.

3. Emotions are not a bad thing. Everyone needs to be able to express a full range of emotion. Allow your children that capacity and relearn how to do it yourself. Don't emotionally cripple your children by shutting them down.

#4993 - 10/10/05 07:10 PM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Dan88 Offline

Registered: 08/07/02
Posts: 247
Loc: DC
The one thing I would say to teachers is to have courage. When they see something that they think shouldn't be, pursue it and get answers no matter who it pisses off and no matter how many people try to dissuade them and no matter how uncomfortable it feels to be butting in. It's always easiest to do nothing and leave a problem to someone else, but when it comes to kids who are victimized, teachers truly are sometimes the only hope a kid has and it's doubly tough because the kid won't even know or appreciate that. His or her own personal courage may be that teacher's only ally. But remember that saving one youngster may be the most significant thing you'll ever do in your career.

#4994 - 10/10/05 08:33 PM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
puppy Offline

Registered: 05/28/05
Posts: 129
Loc: earth
i dont think you can sum it up in 3 tidy little comments. everyone feels differently. personally, id want people to know that you cant classify all of us into one huge lump. 'those people' who were abused. because we arent all the same, we havent all had the same experiences, and we dont all deal with them in the same way. id want people to know that what ive experienced isnt just a word. its not just 'abuse'. because thats too simple. its something that has affected every part of my life. and you cant take it on and off when its convenient, like a hat. its there when you least expect it. its there at the worst possible times. in job interviews, on dates, at a party. its always there. its not just some memoires that you can push to the back of your mind until you can pencil in some time to think about it. its HUGE. and it affects EVERYTING. and it doesnt go away. thats one thing that id like people to understand about me.


#4995 - 10/10/05 10:04 PM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Ivanhoe Offline

Registered: 03/19/03
Posts: 1907

It is huge, it is incredibly huge and complex. A lot of times I will sit here trying to be encouraging to someone and I think, "who do I think that I am, offering some small morsal of hope or courage, when this person needs someone of real intelligence and compassion." Sometimes it feels like we try to come up with three things to do before going to bed, before the job interview, before the date, like you've said.
It is incredibly complex.
I know that the other guys kind of got into the request of coming up with three things...and they're spot on with their suggestions, but I hear what you're saying. We're so individual, we're so unique, we are so complex, and what happened to us invades every aspect of our lives. You set a good balance, here, with your comments.


"No soul is desolate as long as there is a human being for whom it can feel trust and reverence."
George Eliot

#4996 - 10/10/05 11:39 PM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
lacansletter Offline

Registered: 10/04/05
Posts: 70
Loc: St.Petersburg, FL
I don't know that I can put it into 3 things but here are a few, in no particular order except appearance in my head:

1-When a survivor says that this affects "everthing", it does not mean just everything psycologically. It is everything in the world that could affect any particular survivor. It is not just disturbing documentaries, it could be a hollywood comedy. It is not just traumatic memories of the abuse, it could be the smell of incense or chicken soup.
2-Abuse is widespread. It happens more than people care to notice. You probably know victims of SA and don't even know it. my T told me today, her estimate is 1 in 3 men!!! It happens to men as well as women.
3-Some of us suffer in quiet, some suffer out loud. I may look ok, act ok, but inside I think I am a mess.
4-I have loving, caring, attentive parents and I was still victimized. It does not just happen to "those types of people". SA knows no socio-economic-racial limits. It has probably happened in your church, in your school or on your street. Care and concern are just one part of prevention, Dialogue and education are key.
5-I WILL get better, this does not define me.
6- SA of boys is not a "homosexual" crime. It is about power and control. It is not a crime of passion or lust; it is one of violence and hatred.
7-Although this has damaged me in ways I may never get over, I can still have loving, healthy relationships.
8-Addiction behavior is a common Symptom. Many times people do not see beyond the symptom to recognize this for the large picture of abuse. Those of us who were initially diagnosed as Drunk, Junkie, Loser, have been done a great disservice by the mental health community who think we simply cannot get our act together.

I hope some of this helps. Thank you for your bravery in confronting this issue and your willingness to educate others.


"The only Zen you find on the mountain top is the Zen that you bring with you" Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig

#4997 - 10/11/05 07:51 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
cat lover Offline

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 89
Loc: Denver, Colorado
1. Believe me. Don't tell me that I was not really raped, that it was all in my head, relationship and all.

2. Nourish me and listen to me. Don't diminish what I'm feeling, even a year later, or even two years later. Don't say I should just get over it.

3. Help me rebuild trust by respecting my boundaries at all times, and by treating me with respect at all times. Honor our mutually negotiated agreements. Don't touch me without my permission. Let me love you on the terms that I am able to do.

#4998 - 10/13/05 01:37 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
The Seeker Offline

Registered: 04/10/05
Posts: 148
Loc: Ohio, USA
The list could probably go on forever, as we really are each complex and different in our own way. But, here is my shot at it:

1) I am not defined by the abuse, but the abuse did define my early development and socialization. As a child, I had no idea what was happening or how to cope with the aftermath of abuse. So, I struggled with self-identity, sexual identity, other people, and to define my place in the world and my value as a person. All sense of trust was broken, but can be mended, and I was alienated from others, not by choice but by the acts themselves and my own need to feel safe afterward. Never assume a childhood abuse survivor had the same ability to protect themselves as an adult or the mentally capacity to cope with the abuse at the time. I had neither, nor did they magically appear when I reached adulthood. I had to go find them for myself. So, understand I am dealing and let it go at that. Being a victim didn't make me weak, being weak made it easy for me to be a victim. So, watch out for children and help make them stronger.

2) I needn't feel guilty for participating in events over which I never had any control, and it is never a good idea to assume that I was a willing participant even when it seems I was one. The abuse was severely damaging, but at the time, parts of the abuse actually fulfilled needs for love, support, and physical contact even when those things were only lies used by the abuser to gain control over me. I cannot feel guilty for needing to be loved, needing to be supported, or needing physical contact. That is simply part of the human condition that the abuser twisted to get what they wanted. So, love children in a positive way and show them that they are valued, or other adults for that matter.

3) The effects of the abuse still linger and will probably always do so. As a developing child, I was taught the world is bad, people will hurt you if given the chance, love is a lie used to control you, people want you for your body, your body is a commodity that can be used to get what you need or want, feelings have no value, and pain can be swallowed without consequence. These miscues, or bad lessons, are chiseled into the stone without my mind, and it may take a lifetime to undo them. The fact I felt this way does not make me a freak or someone to be feared or despised, as all things can be unlearned and replaced with good thoughts and good lessons. This takes time. Right or wrong, all stimuli from the world outside me is processed through filters that contain the lessons that were once imprinted there. That is not my fault either. I have the propensity to love, to trust, to share, to feel, and to find beauty in the world. Don't ever try to judge me for where I've been or my history without walking a mile in my shoes. You might find it harder than you think, begin to question you own definition of normal, and your definition of strength.

Well, I didn't realize I had all that in me, but I can be longwinded. Oh well. I hope it doesn't sound too stand-offish, but maybe that is just where I am right now.

The answers are in me.

#4999 - 10/13/05 01:48 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Mystic Rhythm Offline

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 96
Loc: Limbo, clawing my way out...
1. A survivor is not alone! There are many out there than can help and encourage a survivor to not only feel accepted for the person he/she is, but also to seek the help that person needs to heal.

2. Women CAN rape men. This isn't a rumor or a joke, it is real. They simply go about it a different way than male abusers, but they can abuse nonetheless.

3. I'm not a freak, nor a loser, nor reject, etc. I am me and I am the best me that I can be right now, and I'm getting better at it as time goes on. I learn and grow and do my share for society; I am good and I wish peace and love onto others, even if I'm struggling to find my own peace and love. Don't abandon me or reject me because I'm different, because everyone is different and noone should ever be abandoned or rejected.

4. Read my quote from Enigma. Says it all.

Aye, good thread indeed. I like these kinds of threads. Quite reaffirming.


"Don't give up and lose the chance to return to innocence" - Enigma, Return to Innocence

#5000 - 10/13/05 02:25 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Bobby Offline

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 1287
Loc: Arizona
1. I am extremely loving, but I'm afraid to.
2. I'm extremely hopeful, but I don't know why.
3. I stick around because enough love from friends and family gets through my walls to make me believe that one day, if they stay with me long enough, and I try hard enough, I'll be able to finally understand why some of them are smiling.

I'm healing now, and I wasn't sure I would.

#5001 - 10/13/05 02:43 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
1. I'm not a macho miracle worker, I couldn't do everything on my own. I asked for help, to me that was a miracle.

2. The guilt and shame isn't mine, that belongs to my abusers - not me.

3. When I learned to trust myself again, I trusted other people as well.


Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

#5002 - 10/13/05 11:18 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
ak Offline

Registered: 01/10/04
Posts: 1491
1. I am much more then a 'survivor'. I was a person first. I am person first now also.

2. To be survivor, to have suffered abuse, I do not wish it to be used as 'excuse' for me now. If I do something bad, if I do something wrong, if I hurt someone else, that is of ME, not my past. I am in control now, myself and my life, and I take responsibility, for good or bad I do.

3. It is not just abuse. I am survivor. I can survive anything and will. Perhaps I am more quiet nature. But do you wish really to 'mess with' someone who already survive what I do, what all us here do? Do not 'mess with' me. It may be quiet, it may take time. But you 'mess with' me, I will win.


#5003 - 10/16/05 12:51 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
crisispoint Offline

Registered: 09/24/03
Posts: 2154
Loc: Massachusetts
1. It happened.
2. People WILL believe you.
3. It WILL get better.

Peace and love,


There are reasons I'm taking medication. They're called "other people." - Me, displaying my anti-social tendancies

#5004 - 10/17/05 09:36 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Grunty1967b Offline

Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 861
Loc: Australia
I'm in a bit of a low at the moment but I still believe this is true for me:

1. It will always be with me and it will never be over
2. It goes deeper than you think
3. Refer to point 2.

#5005 - 10/17/05 10:55 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
VN Offline

Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 723
They-, also, I should remember things to me directly. Right now, especially it is hard to think on.

1. It - not my mistake, not your mistake, not, the mistake of anyone here, any child harmed.

2. I - not that have been made to me. It - difficult to me to remember. I - not that have been made. It did not create me in whom - that still. But--

3. I - who - that another than whom I would be, if these things, they have not happened. It mentions me as I treat people, good and bad people. And people should know, it - I as I grow as I study, it forces me to operate, as I do. Not, which this person has made incorrectly to me, but they should ' pay a consequence ' some times how my head works that has been finished off past. For this purpose, I am sorry. But I cannot change it. I can try to make only it better now.


#5006 - 10/18/05 12:25 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
still 12 Offline

Registered: 10/09/01
Posts: 167

#5007 - 10/18/05 04:11 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Still 12,

This is off topic for this thread I guess, but I just wanted to say this is a very courageous post.

On your 3e, no, I don't hate you. You are asking for help with a serious issue and you are not the only survivor with a problem like that. You deserve support the same as any of us do.

Have you checked with the mods about the "At Risk" forum? I think that's where they prefer to have such discussions, in a more confidential setting.

Take care,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#5008 - 10/18/05 04:42 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Sinking Offline

Registered: 09/26/03
Posts: 577
Loc: Took my ball and went home.
1. I have never hurt anyone but myself.
2. I have no desire to hurt anyone, only, on occasion, still, myself.
3. I will never willingly hurt anyone else because sometimes abuse creates people who nurture rather than destroy.

Livingfaraway - You requested responses to your question. You have received many thoughtful and honest answers. I wonder why you have not added your own thoughts. - John

#5009 - 10/19/05 02:17 AM Re: 3 things you'd want others to know
Curtis St. John Offline
Past President
Registered: 01/20/04
Posts: 1798
Loc: Westchester, N.Y.
1) You can ask me anything.

2) I still have grumpy times.

3) I... have no idea what the third thing is.

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