Chase, Thank you for writing. I'm sorry for what you went through, it does sound like we share some of the same experiences. I was saddened to read about that poor boy that died. And I do agree that, had he not died the crime would have probably went unnoticed. I feel I should be grateful that I did survive, even if at some points I was frightened that he would kill me or never let me leave.

I was not worth the expenditure of time or effort - my justice was what he dished out to me - for being gay. But I digress...

I know just what that feeling is. I've felt it for a few years now. Firstly I ignored it and let it just sit in the back of my mind controlling me in ways that I didn't realize. I spent years trying to deny that I was gay because I thought maybe to be gay meant I had to be like that awful person (whom to this day I have no idea if he even was gay) or that the rape was somehow a penance that you had to pay in order to be gay. And for sometime I believed I didn't deserve anything better than to that.

I've only just began seeking therapy to help me work through some of the shame, anger, guilt, incorrect sexual behavior and blame that I still carry from this. I posted my question, hoping to know where I might best meet people who maybe have experienced the same thing, but then here you appeared smile I started therapy a couple of months ago and I feel somehow worse than I did before. I had learned to cope and forget before, but was lonely since I hadn't been able to make any relationship work. Until I started therapy I didn't realize how much impact my assault had on me, and as the therapist points out the things that are a result of the PTSD that I developed, it just seems to give the rape (I'm still adjusting to using that word it was hard for a while) even more weight and make it all that more horrible. I often wonder if others feel the same way or experienced the same thing before things got better.

His name was Emanuel and he is a candle I bring with me here. His name means "God is with us." And so I bring him here with me - here to MS.
So touching, and I think it is amazing that you think of him.