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#423872 - 01/31/13 06:39 PM Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector (triggers)
LaRosa Offline

Registered: 08/03/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Colorado
It's been a while since I've come back to this forum. I initially signed up a week after my oldest son was arrested. It's been a whirlwind of a nightmare since that day, but honestly for the years before that too. I was so grateful to find this forum because as I'm sure many of you are aware, there just aren't many resources out there for parents of male survivors, much less parents of siblings.

Let me start over. I am the mother of two boys, ages 15 and 9 (the oldest is my step-son, but hasn't seen his bio mom in almost 10 years--so I'm mom).

For the past 2 years we've been trying to get the oldest help for porn addiction. The lies, the deception, the hurt, anger and betrayal were very triggering for me over the past two years because it also included exploiting private photos I had taken solely to share with my husband. My son and I would argue constantly. Each day I felt suffocated being in the same house with him, caring for him, trying to guide him...all the while he kept sneaking into my bedroom, hacking my computer, stealing anything that was mine, including clothing. Add to this his issues with ADD and possibly Asperger's and we were constantly at wit's end.

Meanwhile my youngest had been suffering from crippling anxiety . He was scared of everything and needed constant reassurance. We had figured it came from a neighbor once threatening my life in front of him, but the fear, the panic and worse, the self-loathing were far deeper than that.

Both boys had been seeing counselors. The first counselor we went to for the oldest told us basically we were imposing too many boundaries on him (!!). On the suggestion of a friend of the family who works with sex offenders, we moved him to a practice with therapists who had experience with porn addiction, sexual assault and childhood trauma.

The therapist was no-holds-barred with the oldest and held his feet to the fire about the lying and deceit. She was trying EMDR with him and felt that there was possibly some traumatic sexual abuse in his history that he was avoiding. Meanwhile, the other therapist was getting blocked by my youngest who didn't want to discuss why, at the age of 6/7, he kept saying he wanted to die.

Oh god, this is getting long.

In June of 2012 we learned that the oldest recalled a memory of SA with bio mom. He refused to discuss it in any detail with us. The memory wasn't strong enough to charge her with anything...and frankly, she changes her name so often it's hard to track her down at all.

In July 2012, a few days before I was to take the state bar exam, my mom caught the oldest molesting the youngest. She called my husband who called the therapist, knowing that the therapist is a required reporter. We moved the oldest out of the house that night. The police interviewed the youngest the next morning and found that oldest had been abusing him for over 2 years. Both of them hid it so well frown Oldest was arrested later that day while I accompanied youngest to the hospital to collect physical evidence.

I'm here because I'm mother to two survivors. The oldest never discussed his abuse, never wanted to look at his own trauma and find healing and rejected any real attempts to connect emotionally with other people. He, in many ways, is still in denial about his early childhood or the impact that had on him...but fortunately not in denial about the impact that his choices have had on our family and especially on our youngest. He is in therapy but I know it's going to be a very long time before he finds wholeness and we can find healing. He was given 2 years probation after passing his sexual history polygraph and we participate in safety team meeting with social worker, probation officer, therapist and my in-laws (who he now lives with).

Meanwhile, we continue with therapy for my youngest who isn't nearly as panicked or hurt and I think is finally starting to gain some sense of control and inner power over his life. My own status as a survivor, not just of SA that happened in college, but also of the exploitation from my oldest, has helped my youngest find a voice in all of this, an ally.

But I'm mother to both survivor and offender. And it tears me apart each and every day. I struggle with my own issues as well, my own PTSD that my oldest triggered for over two years. I visit my oldest every two weeks; my husband visits more frequently. It's put so much pressure on our family. While the goal of the court and therapy is reunification and clarification, I don't want that process rushed at all. We're looking into moving out of this house to give our youngest (and us) a chance to start over and build a family focused on healing.

I'm so sorry this was so long. This was just supposed to be an introduction. But I also felt it was important to voice a little more of our story. Thank you all for participating on this forum, giving people a chance to connect about our boys and men who have survived sexual abuse and to support those who love them. I am so very grateful

Edited by LaRosa (02/01/13 07:22 PM)

#423879 - 01/31/13 07:41 PM Re: Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector [Re: LaRosa]
Still Offline

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 7011
Loc: FEMA Region 1
I don't know what to say.

A few things pop into my mind:
-I'm sorry you all have to deal with this.
-I'm glad it was found-out.
-I'm glad the help and healing structure is in place for all.
-As a father, I feel only imagined pain...a wild guess as to what you feel. But I do know a child's horror.

Can't say much more as I don't want to have "crying red-eyes" when I see my kids in 20 minutes.

#423883 - 01/31/13 08:13 PM Re: Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector [Re: LaRosa]
LaRosa Offline

Registered: 08/03/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Colorado
Thank you, Still. I definitely don't want to give you crying red-eyes today, but I appreciate the support and the empathy. Thank you so much.

#423889 - 01/31/13 09:44 PM Re: Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector [Re: LaRosa]
Farmer Boy Offline

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia

Thankyou for sharing your story.

It was very painful for me to read at first. I had to read it in a few is too similar to my own story (ages, blended family etc). Just add another 5 year old brother (me) and parents who did nothing when the oldest brother was caught in the act and then both brothers abusing the youngest.

I try hard not to judge my parents too harshly for their inaction and the subsequent long term effects on all three of us boys - it was a different time 30 years ago. But when I hear of parents like yourself it becomes obvious how they let me (us) down.

You have broken the cycle and hopefully saved them both from a life of tourment. While I am saddened that you have to deal with this situation, I am glad your boys have you to love and support them. I think you are awesome!!! It is not an easy issue to tackle head on and your situation even more so than most. You have shown yourself to be truly courageous. Add to that the fact that you have not let your own SA issues prevent you from supporting your oldest. You are obviously a VERY compassionate person - I wish there was more support for you.

I found your story so encouraging because it shows that the times they are a changing.

More than meets the eye!

#423996 - 02/01/13 07:17 PM Re: Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector [Re: LaRosa]
LaRosa Offline

Registered: 08/03/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Colorado
Lee, thank you for taking care of yourself enough to walk away from my story when you needed to...but for also responding here. But I'll tack on a trigger warning at the top just in case.

I knew that this story might be familiar to so many...and so I hesitated sharing it. But I wanted people to know that there are parents who will protect their kids, who understand the harm that is done by ignoring the problem and who will actively support treatment, growth and healing. But it's a rough road for us...and hard to imagine how we will ever feel whole again.

#424558 - 02/07/13 04:06 AM Re: Mother, Survivor, Ally, Protector [Re: LaRosa]
focusedbody Offline

Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 542
Loc: NY

Thank you for your courage. As a mother who takes responsibility for what happens with her sons in areas where mothers are not always made welcome, you are a treasure.

My own mother has had difficulties dealing with the story of my own brother's SA. (He has only told me about it, although he said he told our parents.) Because my brother was more of a liar than I was growing up, she had trouble at first accepting that his abuse even happened. One of her responses was, "are you sure he isn't lying"?

Again, for you to be a parent and look squarely at the neglect reflects your strength. I wonder what has helped you.

My mother was also abused by one of her brothers growing up, but we are talking 1930s, when attitudes were different. I think she feels proud of having talked with him about it, but I'm not so sure she really understands the depth of what abuse can do.

I'm looking to help my family see things more as they are.

Thank you for your story. As I said, I'm interesting in knowing what has helped you take the responsibility you have taken. Or maybe it just comes naturally....
Lose the drama; life is a poem.


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