I was looking back over my initial introduction post made about 9 months ago and some other old posts and trying to get a sense of how my understanding of things had changed since I first began to suspect that I was a victim of CSA and incest.
The thing that stood out to me most was that 9 months ago I really had not in any way suspected my father of having molested me, but as of today I have come to be fairly certain that he did. I was never very close to him, but always had a certain affection for him and the sense that he was one of the nice people in the family. I had no memories of any kind of him hurting me. My problem was always just that he was unavailable, non-communicative, didn't take much of an interest in what I was interested in, didn't talk about certain things, didn't protect me from my mother and wouldn't talk about her problems, etc. I didn't think he was a great father, but I thought he was just limited and repressed, not cruel or predatory.
Earlier this year I sent a letter to various relatives in which I explained that I was cutting the whole larger family out of my life and why. I had begun to suspect him at this point, because the level of denial needed for him to be oblivious to the CSA and abuse seemed to be just impossible. My wife had done a fair job of convincing me that things couldn't really make sense unless he was also a predator. He had also said some things to me that were suspicious, wanting my kids to visit alone, pretending that he didn't remember things that I had told him about my wife's family being abusive to her, etc..
I wasn't sure exactly how everyone would react, but the big surprise to me was my father's response. He didn't say much, as is his style, just a few messages and so forth that I didn't answer, but everything that he said was straight out of the books' descriptions of classic abuser-talk. Not wanting to listen to what I was saying, playing the victim, no interest in my well-being or sympathy for me (or anyone else in the family for that matter). I'm the one hurting him by bringing these things up, apparently, and he's "not sure what you think that we did to you". His anger towards me, rather than any kind of concern, was clear, as was his unwillingness to listen to anything I said. On the other hand, he never in any way denied that what I said about the family was true.
This completely tipped the scales for me and since then it has been impossible to think of him as anything other than a predator, nor do I have any desire to do so, nor do I doubt myself at all. If I try to think that he's not I can't make sense of anything about him, but once I think as though he's a predator everything falls into place perfectly.
Once I realized this, I had a huge upsurge of negative emotion towards him from my unconscious, clearly left over from childhood. I had waking nightmares of him as a cruel torturer, night-panics where I woke up with a sense that he was in the house, nightmares in which I was running away with my kids to try to keep him from molesting them, and so on. I have found that to my surprise I feel far more anger towards him than anyone, and I am the type that usually finds it very hard to get in touch with my anger. Again, to be clear, prior to this he was the person in my family that I liked most and had the most affection for. The rapid shift has been stunning.
I've always wondered how he could have married my mother or been attracted to her, as she's terrifyingly crazy and somewhat ugly, and he's a fairly handsome guy and generally well-liked by women. He's always seemed oddly asexual, though, without giving any indication that he might be a closeted homosexual. But their marriage makes sense once one realizes that their sexuality might just be twisted towards children. There was always babysitting, sleepovers of friends and cousins, etc. When I became older they had my brother as the next victim. And in my experience with friends and work colleagues and time reading about this stuff, it certainly seems that there's a certain kind of "nice, upstanding guy" child molester, into which category my Dad fits perfectly. I worked with a colleague once who was eerily similar to my Dad: same kind of wife, same kind of hobbies, similar body language and body type, similarly well-regarded by many people, similarly attentive with children in a way that comes across as healthy rather than creepy. I have found out that one of his children a few years ago accused him and his wife of abuse and has a drug problem and is in therapy, etc. It all fits.
I have also had dreams lately in which my apartment is being broken into by two family friends, one of whom I had not suspected of abusing me at all and the other about whom I had begun to wonder. Those kinds of break-in dreams began when I started to realize the history of CSA and incest. I have recently had dreams, more symbolic than realistic, in which as an infant I was simultaneously being molested by my grandfather and another older man that I couldn't identify. The dreams are from the classic dissociative outside-the-body and up-on-the-cieling perspectives. I was notorious as a baby for crying all the time, never sleeping, etc.
I became obsessed with Sandusky at the time, like many of us, but hadn't been reading much about abuse over the last few months. In the last week or two I again find myself obsessed with ritual abuse and conspiracy abuse stories, all of which are so terrifyingly well-documented on the internet. I try not to get sucked into all of the dark corners.
I increasingly suspect that my immediate family was just part of a larger network of pedophiles comprised of my extended family and friends and other local people (neighbors, Little League coach, boy scout leaders, etc.). To me, as a Christian, I consider any group of people conspiring to rape and abuse children diabolical, and so it doesn't really matter to me whether they're actually wearing robes and masks and praying to Satan while they do it (a la Jimmy Saville, apparently): the essence is the same. I'm sure that there are some people who hurt children not out of pure malice or a sinister plot so much as because their lives are a mess, and because they were themselves molested and are now compulsive, and hopefully those people later regret it and try to change and get help and make amends. However, it's hard for me not to have a sense that many of these predators just plain worship the Devil, who I do believe is a real being (I understand that everyone has his own views, I just want to talk about what I've been thinking). One uncle who I am now sure molested me came up to me at a holiday barbecue a few years ago seemingly out of nowhere and began interrogating me about how I know God exists, etc. These aren't things that I ever bring up with my family normally, and he's someone that I hardly talk to at all, and so I was really confused about why he was doing it. Usually he just talks about sports and his lawn and that sort of thing. Now that I think about it though, I and my wife have had similarly experiences with many of the people who abused us, and they confused us at the time. I think it's largely the product of a guilty conscience; they need to think that they won't be judged, that right and wrong are illusions, in order to justify themselves. These same people show up at Church and go to religious events when it's socially convenient for them.
I know that memories come to the surface at the right time and that I don't need to control the process or become impatient, but it drives me crazy to not know who else was molesting me or my other cousins and friends. It's not so much that I'm driven to know the details of my own molestation so much as that I feel like these vampires are somehow winning as long as they have pulled the wool over my eyes and I don't know their secrets. I know that it's wrong to think that my obliviousness was my fault or anything shameful. The dissociation is a coping mechanism to protect me and part of the reason that I survived. But the PTSD part of me can't help but feel that if they know they molested me, and I don't, they have the upper hand.
As something of an aside, I find that I get busy and don't post here for a long time, and then a kind of pressure builds. In a couple of months I find myself reading obsessively about abuse cases instead of doing my job at work and feeling sick at night and on the weekends, and then I go on a big binge of reading and posting in MS. It seems to be a real need for me.
Responses are welcome. Anybody have similar quick 180s in their feelings towards a relative or friend, like mine towards my father? Repressed memories emerging dramatically? Victimized by many people in a cult or conspiracy situation? Obsessed with ritual or Satanic abuse? Let me hear from you.
All the best,
Edited by Ninja_Turtle (01/23/13 02:30 PM)