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#52356 - 12/31/03 05:34 PM I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
Mike Church Offline
Moderator Emeritus
Registered: 01/23/03
Posts: 3439
Loc: Toronto, Canada
A bit of background.

As a child I was beaten physically by all my male adult relatives. At 16 three guys raped me over a year at military college. From 18-21 I was a male prostitute in our nation's capital. From 22 -56 I acted out with men periodically. I have been married for 36 years. I became an alcoholic at 17 and joined AA at 36. I was a heroin addict as a male prostitute ( saved by a real live saint).

I have learned that it was not my fault ever. I have learned that my behaviours that allowed me to cope very nearly killed me and any relationships I had. I have learned a murderous hatred for those sick individuals at military college. I hope if they died it was horribly.
I have learned that the shame was not mine ever.

Most of all I learned that to love, share and develop close relationships in spite of my past. This all came about here in the past year that I have belonged to MS. There was no judgement or condemnation just support, brotherly love and yes even the old swift kick in the ass when I needed it. You all know who you are.

By learing this I discovered that to gain the respect and love of others it was important to gain self respect and a sense of selfworth. Sounds easy but I guess I am just a slow learner cause it took quite a while.

Because of the support here I have gained self respect and self worth. I can look in the mirror and kind of like the guy that is staring back at me. Sure I have warts but I can live with those. Sure I am quick to anger but am working on it. Yes I get the poor me's but I can boot myself out of it with the help of my brothers here.

Above all I believe what I have learned and I cannot express coherently what MS and my brothers have meant to me in this process.

Now what I resolve for 2004. I am never going to regrss no fXXXXXg way. I will continue here at MS and will attempt to share this with others who are in pain. I will never ever forget what I have learned and believe.

The road was bloody sometimes and the hills seemed insurmountable at the time but with help here I stayed the course. One thing that spurred me on was a sense that if I regressed I was letting my new family down and by so doing would let myself down. I had some near misses but that is all they were.

Why am I writing this. Because I want to shout out about it and I want to let others know that the damned road is worth the pain.


Peace to you all!!! :p ;\) \:D



#52357 - 12/31/03 05:55 PM Re: I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
Leosha Offline

Registered: 06/18/03
Posts: 3614
Loc: Right here

I do not know that you really know this, but you truly are a heroic man. There is so much to you, there is so much substance to you. And in truth, it always was within you, all the goodness, the strength, the success you have discovered, it always has been you. That is amazing.

I am starting to realize I lost my family. My father was an abusive basterd, no such thing as a father. My mother, I still love her, I have totally been able to reconcile within myself what she had done that was not good. But at the time, she abused me as well, emotionally and sexually, and failed to prevent or protect anything else that happened. I lost my brother at the hands of my father.

All of that, all of that turmoil, all of that confusion, all of that loss, all of that wrongness, it programed me, it 'set me up', it 'groomed' me for what further would happen, the sexual abuse by my sport coach.

Through all of that, reliving and remembering and reclaiming some, all of that, I think I have started to learn one very important thing, something I am finally starting to realize some as true. It is still hard to believe as truth, because I still mostly feel and believe the worse things of myself. But I am starting to believe:

None of this was my fault.

My new year resolution it to fully believe that, to reclaim myself, and to get closer to being the person I was meant to be.

Thank you Mikey.


Avatar photo in memory of my younger brother Makar.

"Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted."~~~Martin Luther King Jr., 1963

#52358 - 12/31/03 08:21 PM Re: I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
outis Offline

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2261
Loc: Maryland USA
How to follow two great men?

Both of you, and others like you, have been a great inspiration to me in the time I've been here. When I think that I cannot get better, that I deserved what happened, I come here and read the things you people write.

I have a thick head. It resists the intrusion of common sense sometimes. \:\) But I have learned so much from you guys, had the lessons repeated so many times, in so many viewpoints, that some of it is finally sticking in my head.

It's not an easy process, but the thing I had in place of a life before wasn't easy either. At least this way I have hope.

Thanks. I mean that.


"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

#52359 - 12/31/03 09:18 PM Re: I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
survive75 Offline

Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 304
Loc: Massachusetts
God Mikey... what a challenge you have given us... as always. \:\) To reiterate what Leosha said, you are a fucking amazing soul. God, I hope you know how much you have given to me in the few short months I have been here at MS. You were the first person EVER to tell me that what happened to me was, indeed, a "very big deal." I will never forget that Mikey.

Deep breath... my turn:

In 2003, I have had to face what I have worked hard to push away. From age 4 to 8, I was physically and sexually abused by my stepfather. Spankings included forceful digital penetration, and more recently I have begun to remember forced oral sex. It wasn't until they divorced that it stopped. My mother knew about the physical abuse and I believe she suspected the sexual. In 2003, I have begun to acknowledge my anger at her for bringing him into my life and not stopping the abuse. In 2003, I told details of my abuse for the first time to my therapist and in the discussion boards here. When I was 17, I took two bottles of Tylenol and a bottle of Codeine and wound up in the ER. In 2003, I slit my wrists after a bottle of Advil and ended up in the local psych ward. In 2003, I told my girlfriend of the abuse and have struggled with the vivid flashbacks and violent male rape fantasies during sex with her.

What I resolve for 2004. I resolve to work like hell to never see suicide as a solution to escape the flashbacks again. I will try to forgive myself for not being able to remember every detail of the abuse, and believe that this did happen even if I don't want to believe it. I will continue therapy even when the last thing in the world I want to do is talk to someone about these things in my head. I hope to continue on this path of recovery and truly begin to believe that what happened to me was, indeed, a "very big deal." And I swear, with everything I am, to be a worthy member of this place and be there for all of you in your dark places and in your victories.




"Even though I know/I don’t want to know/Yeah I guess I know/I just hate how it sounds"

#52360 - 12/31/03 09:52 PM Re: I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
FlyWM Offline

Registered: 09/14/03
Posts: 322
Loc: Michigan
This was a powerful post for me to read, felt like a punch in the gut, in a good way. Hearing you say it is not your fault, or your shame, maybe that makes some sense for me also. I hope that one day I can reach the point where you are, you are a great man, with the power within. Thank you for posting this, was like a wake-up call for me. Happy New Year, and all the best.


Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible in not a declaration, it's a dare.


#52361 - 01/02/04 11:49 PM Re: I learned, believe and resolve for 2004
RICK57 Offline

Registered: 12/31/03
Posts: 1611
Mikey - this is a powerful posting for me to read. This is only my second visit to this site and to read of your experiences gives me great hope.

I never spoke of my abuse to anyone until 2 years ago when I told 3 close friends (under the influence of alcohol) without really meaning to - I just couldn't contain it any longer. They were very supportive & it helped for a while. Recently I had a major relapse & have now sought professional help for the first time - this appears to be working (after 34 years - you also appear to have been kicking yourself for at least this long). Everyone is being really good to me but they obviously do not understand things the way that people on this site do. I just can't believe that there is such a supportive place.

You are indicating that we can take control of our future. One of my closest friends has suggested that I write a list of things that I want to do & when I want to do it by, i.e. setting goals for a positive future. With a friend like that rooting for me & the strength that I can gain from people like yourself I must go for it.

My first goal is to take up painting (something I haven't done since school & was very good at) - I'm going to decorate my spare bedroom in a Japanese style & produce the wall paintings myself (the materials are available locally & highly discounted}. If the results aren't that good, who cares, at least I'll have tried. I'm going to learn to say 'no' at work & let others do their share of extra hours. I'm going to clear all of the junk out of the house that has accumulated over the years (and will probably take ages to shift - maybe some of it will be OK for charity shops & then I can help someone else).

I was going to produce a painting that had all of the positive people that have shared my life on one side & all of those that have created negative feelings on the other side. I did a rough drawing for this one last night & do you know what I realised how lucky I am. There were lots of people on the good side & my abuser/ a couple of bad teachers & bosses on the other side. I realised that the painting would be a bit strange if I went ahead - then again this could be a positive reminder if I put it on my wall! *I added a bit of language to the picture of my abuser but didn't have any pins at hand to stick in him.

Thanks again to all of the people on this site that give each other hope. Remember when you are giving this love to the other people here, save some for yourselves - we all deserve it!

*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!


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