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#84505 - 05/11/02 01:25 PM No Monopoly on Molestation: Art Buchwald Comes Out as Abuse Victim
Richard Gartner, PhD Offline
Past President

Registered: 09/20/00
Posts: 404
Loc: New York, NY, USA
No Monopoly on Molestation

The Washington Post

By Art Buchwald
Thursday, May 2, 2002; Page C02

I rarely write a serious column, but -- warning -- this is one of them.

Not only little Catholic boys, but also little boys of other faiths have been molested -- not by priests but rather by civilian pedophiles in the land.

There are thousands, possibly millions of men who, as children, were victims of sexual abuse. The majority never told anyone because they were so ashamed.

This is why I am coming out of the closet. I confess that as a child I was a victim of molestation, and it has left its mark on me.

I was 13 years old at the time and lived in Queens, N.Y. One Saturday I decided to visit a friend, Bill Mahler, at a prep school in Lawrenceville, N.J.

My means of transportation at that time was hitchhiking. The route I took was U.S. Highway 1.

After several short lifts, I was picked up by a man in a Chevrolet. I remember every moment of that trip to this day.

The man was well dressed in a sports jacket, shirt and tie. He was very friendly. He asked where I went to school, what sports I liked -- and then he asked if I was interested in girls.

I said I was and he started to tell me a very erotic story. As he went into details, I became aroused. Then he put his hand on me.

I didn't know what to do. Fortunately, U.S. 1 had traffic lights, and as soon as we stopped for a red light I jumped out of the car.

I ran into the woods and hid there for an hour, expecting him to find me.

I didn't know what I had done, or why he had done what he had done, but my instinct told me this was not an ordinary ride.

Years went by and I never told anyone about the experience.

The only other time I was molested was as a 20-year-old Marine. I was on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific. The air raid siren sounded and I ducked into a space that could only hold two men. The other person was a Marine master sergeant. I couldn't believe it, but he tried to kiss me. I fought for my life and finally escaped.

It was the most discouraging moment of my life in the Marine Corps. Whoever thought a Marine -- a sergeant no less -- would want to kiss another Marine on the lips?

I confess this now because I know there are so many people out there with similar experiences.

It is okay to advocate zero tolerance for priests when it comes to sexual abuse of children -- but what about the rest of us?


#84506 - 05/14/02 04:24 PM Re: No Monopoly on Molestation: Art Buchwald Comes Out as Abuse Victim
randy Offline

Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 30
Loc: Pittsburgh, Pa
I got news for you Art,
That was not molestation or abuse. The first was an attempt by someone to engage you in sex. It failed and you were not harmed. The second attempt was one of those wierd war things. If Art ever had been molested or abused it surely would have put him in the looney bin. I mean if that botheres him to this day I can only wonder what he would feel like if he had lived my life. Personally what he describes does not cut the mustard of what should be considered abuse by society. It pales in comparison and "WATERS" down the real horror of having been abused sexually. Every flirtatious gay person better watch out if what he describes as abuse becomes the norm. I have been hit on more times than a worn out softball and never felt fear or under duress because some guy nudged my knee. I think what Art is confessing too is being homophobic not the victim of molestation.

#84507 - 05/14/02 05:24 PM Re: No Monopoly on Molestation: Art Buchwald Comes Out as Abuse Victim
Jim C. Offline

Registered: 03/23/02
Posts: 63
Loc: New Mexico

I agree about the second one, but the first incident could be considered abusive. The fact that he huddled in fear for an hour says it was traumatic.

I'm not saying it compares with the abuse that some of us have on this site endured, but please don't minimize the impact on him.

To him it may have been sexual abuse.

Jim C.

In all of time and space, there is but one you and one me...

#84508 - 05/14/02 11:51 PM Re: No Monopoly on Molestation: Art Buchwald Comes Out as Abuse Victim
babs Offline

Registered: 07/20/01
Posts: 59
Loc: Cub Hill, MD
Randy -

This SA board isn't a 'pissing' contest amongst survivors. I agree that Art Buchwald's story is VERY mild compared to most of the survivors who post here, like my husband, Getteddie, and obviously yourself; but he still experienced shame and terror at the hands of another.

Just like beauty being in the eyes of the beholder, Abuse is in the heart of the victim.

Possibly the attention Art Buchwald gets with the publication of this article will help bring about changes in society's attitude about SA.

Maybe we should find out his mailing address, tell him how SA has affected all our lives (survivors, spouses, family and friends)and he can tell the world about the HORROR of abuse. Maybe help us find a VOICE on a wavelength that reaches a larger audience.


[ May 14, 2002: Message edited by: babs ]

[ May 14, 2002: Message edited by: babs ]


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