RJD (and everyone):
Damn! What a courageous & heart-wrenching thesis! Not to mention heart-healing, I hope for you & for all of us!
Covert & overt incest began for me almost from the start of my life.
The first incident of sexual incest I remember was when I was no more than 3 or 4 (my father was gone after that), perpetrated by my mother & my father (and damn the "experts" who say you can't remember something that young; it's taken almost 45 years for the pieces of that memory to start coming together for me, and whether even I want to remember it or not it's here, it's real, & I'm gonna deal with it whether anyone else likes it or not!)
Ongoing sexual & emotional, covert & overt incest by my mother (occassionally dragging boyfriends & encouraging babysitters & even an aunt) into the nightmare) continued until I was 12 and she abandoned me to a children's home to keep me (bullsh*t! to keep herself!) out of trouble.
The clincher was when I was I think about 10 or 11, she prostituted me to a homosexual couple for a night.
I masturbate a lot also, tho I'd never really thot of it in terms of penis hatred; however my T has noted that a now obscure (thanks to our "sexually liberated"--more like bound! society) but original definition of "masturbation" is "self-abuse," a definition I painfully agree with.
For me, erection & orgasm became what I lived for. Usually I could attract girls but not keep them long, so this involved some real sex and a lot of fantasy (yet very real for me) sex.
Girls & women became purely sex objects, and in retrospect largely objects of my hatred. My fantasies were usually rape & often violent, tho less so as the years went by, especially after my second marriage and then starting into recovery.
I obsessed over sex, I was addicted to sex, I married (my 1st; failed, from the start)for sex, I lived for sex, and I nearly died for sex.
"I know I never had a chance at normalcy as a young man. Sometimes what I needed most was what I feared most: love, understanding and acceptance. These are all qualities that evoke getting in touch with vulnerability, a place where breathlessness lived."
Damn, brother!--how did you know me well enuf to write that about me! :rolleyes: I'm dying for intimacy (and I have an absolutely wonderful wife of over 20 years & two great kids!) but I'm afraid it will kill me! ("Soul Murder"; yeah I should try reading that one too).
I still struggle with hatred of women, and of men, and (the key) of myself. My fantasy world is a way of trying to prove my manhood to both men & women, & especially myself. I'm only just beginning to break free from this, as you so well described it, twilight zone of distorted reality.
Your excerpt on terms & the boy code & the societal denial of male vulnerability really hit me. Tho I'm still early into it, I can safely say that a good book on this I just started reading is "Male Survivors: The Impact of Sexual Abuse" by Matthew Parynik Mendel, a doctor who specializes in working with male survivors (Sage Publications, 1995; available from Amazon.com).
When I was 10 or 11, my mother had taken to posing in lingerie or nude for money. Always very free in showing her body around the house, she reveled in showing me these pictures and where she kept the photo albums. Tho not my 1st masturbation experience, I would sometimes take these photos out & masturbate. I would think to myself, "I'm a motherf*cker!" I didn't remember then that being a "motherf*cker had started much earlier for me, and had happened as recently as a year or 2 earlier at the most.
In my family, I had no father from the age of 3 or 4, except about a year of an either absent or abusive drunk stepfather around age 8 or 9, and brief attempts by some live-in boyfriends.
So my mother made me her surrogate husband, and father to my younger & handicapped brother. I was the man of the house. But I was never a child.
I am one of those 1 in 3 "professional protectors" Thomas mentions in "Men Surviving Incest." Now that I know this, I'm working on not perpetrating the stereotyping, denial & myths, and facing the truth. And hopefully, with encouragement like yours & the other men in this forum, telling the truth, even publicly.
No there are still not many men who have done this, but the tide is turning. You mentioned the hockey player Kennedy, Santana & Tom Arnold, & Lloydy mentioned Billy Connally, all of whom Ive heard but not read much about, except excerpts from an interview with Santana.
An excellent story of a male survivor of mother-son incest who came forward is in the book "Come Here" by Richard Berendzen, former President & now professor at American University.
I wonder if any lesser-known men are going public with their stories and I'm just not hearing them. I can understand how hard this would be even as I consider it myself, tho not any time soon. We don't have the security socially & financially that public figures like Santana have--not that this means it was easy for them.
"The body will present its bill." (Miller 1990)
Man, you are so right! Mine is presented in the forms of fibromyalgia (FM), which my health care workers & I believe to be, as I've read before, body memories of the abuse (when I was growing up they were labeled "growing pains!"); migraines, sleep apnea, allergies, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), acid reflux, yadda yadda. The mind, I think, presents its bill too: for me, that means PTSD, severe clinical depression, OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), & multiple addictions.
"Where is the outlet?...Where is this victimized man’s experience recognized and where are the indignities he suffered as a child validated? Who will hear? Who will think this experience is important?" Damn good questions, fellow survivor!
Our fellow survivors--one of my best outlets, even if (due to geography as well as anonymity) it is plugged in primarily online right now!
Another outlet is taking care of myself physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially & sexually. This includes (ideally) a healthy diet & exercise regimen, massage therapy, prayer & meditation, meds, building intimacy, establishing true friendships, and trying to be myself.
My therapy is becoming increasingly helpful. Soon I will leave for a 2nd session of confrontation of my mother with my T as guide; not physically, but yet in a very real & powerful way. She is the only one I know of I could physically confront, but based on previous experience, family advice & concern for my recovery I have chosen this path. So far so good. I may confront others in the same way, but this is where it starts for me.
Thanks RJD for helping me get that stuff sorted out here with fellow male survivors! And way to go! Lloydy (and everyone):
You wisely said, "We need people strong enough to come forward and shout out, only then will young men realise they are not alone. But first the social stigmas have to be demolished, and that's not easy."
I agree we must come forward & shout out, and I agree the social stigmas must be demolished.
Just a question, for which I have no answer: Is the only way to demolish the social stigmas going to be our coming forward & shouting out? Or is it somehow simeltaneous? I don't know, & I'm not volunteering! Not yet, anyway! Any thots on this, men? Roy (and everyone):
Some affirmations for you, my friend.
Your experience is as valid & in need of vindication as anybody's.
, there may be more to it than you think the more you work on remembering, recovery, therapy, etc.
For years I thot the stuff I could remember was no big deal, even natural, a part of life. I was encouraged to think this & it suppressed other stuff, most of which only started surfacing in the last year or less.
Discovering this load of crap has been painful & hard to handle. But the added knowledge is adding understanding of my life & myself, how I am & why I do what I do. This helps to diffuse the power of the past over me. "The truth shall set you free." And I think, tho I wonder sometimes, things have come back to me as I've needed them & have been ready for them.
Just sharing my own experience here, for what it may be worth to you. But don't invalidate or underestimate your experience & don't let anyone else do so. Validation, I think, can lead to at least some measure of vindication & victory.
The fact that you can even think of having a relationship with much less taking care of your mother is remarkable to me. That doesn't mean I could do this; right now I can't even imagine it.
It does give me something to think on. I've acknowledged, even to my mother a while back now, that she passed on some qualities that have been of benefit to me. But the last time we were in touch & seeing each other some, the same patterns of emotional incest, of control & manipulation, of parasitic narcissism, were still there. So for now I "see" her in therapy!
But we're all different, things do change, and I affirm you in this--as long as you are taking care of you. Broken (and everyone):
I'm with you! I want people to believe me & take me seriously, but its hard to trust people & speak out when seemingly everyone you trusted, & should have been able to trust, has burned you.
My mother should be in prison too; instead she abadoned me to a children's home! Do I want to see harm come to her. Sometimes, yes. I don't really know what I want, yet.
When I "met" with my mother in therapy last week, my counselor asked me what I wanted from her, what I hoped to get out of confronting her. I think what I want, or the best I can probably hope for, is to tell her that I know what she did no matter how much she denies it. And telling her in therapy may be enuf.
I'll see, becuz I'll be leaving to do just that soon. As far as prosecuting her or doing anything to hurt her, I don't wanna do anything to get that close to her, at least not now.
As far as people & society as a whole, I want to be heard & believed, but if I need to (not sure yet) I'll speak up whether they believe it or not. I hope.
Maybe its as you say, "The only way out seems to either be to give up, or to lead them by example. That means i have to fight to be heard. I mean, what am i supposed to do? Just accept that people are cruel and ignorent and dont want to listen? They may be all those things, but if you dont fight, then they are never going to change."
What I do know is that like you I want to get rid of the rage, get out of the trap of fear & pain, take control of my life. I too want to live!
What's real?! We are real, brother!
Thanks! Let's let it out & let's live!
Gentlemen, I am thankful for all of the good insight & encouragement we share here! Thanks to you all for helping me sort things out on the journey.