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Thread: Classifying as a means to move on

  1. #1
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    Classifying as a means to move on

    Iíve struggled for years to understand what was done to me. My motherís love in boyfriend, father of my siblings, had been highly inappropriate. That I was sure of. Itís the classification of it I need to move past this.
    My father left me when I was 6. He was almost entirely out of the picture. I move from place to place with momís boyfriends. Within 3 months of her first date with HIM, she was pregnant and I moved with him to the suburbs. Some years later, heíd beat her to a sickening extreme. We were kicked out of our home and learned to grow as a unit. 2 years later, Mom turned back for stability. He was finally medicating his bipolar disorder and seemed like a new person. My extreme reluctance faded as I believed he was a new person. I started calling him DAD.
    Thatís when it began. I was somewhere between 13-15 when heíd start the behavior. Heíd ask me to sit on his lap when my mother was asleep. Try to get me to drink beer while I was there. Heíd put his arm around my sides and say ďlook, youíre all mush. You need to tighten upĒ. Heíd slide his hands up so they were just grazing, but not officially touching. Other instances included graphic talk of sex with Mom, emotional torture (leading me to believe he was always watching me), tapping our phone line, talking about my chest while staring at it, flicking and tapping my behind and chest, and letting me know heís capable of killing Mom and getting away with it. Years had gone by before I was prompted to tell Mom. She didnít help, she actually used the information to get custody out of state during their divorce. Iíve grown, and I understand this was vile and inappropriate- but what was it? Thereís something about his continuous line pushing where he seemed clear not to cross the hard line of defined molestation. Iím now in my early 30s, getting by relatively wel. This is some strange thing I need to help process.

  2. #2
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    I am so sorry this predatory man took advantage of his relationship with your mother to sexually target and groom you. What he did if witnessed would have likely lead to him being investigated for child molestation. Fact that he implemented some control/boundaries on his behaviour does not lessen his culpability...he was an adult...knew what he was doing. Can only imagine how you felt when you mother did not offer you the support you needed when you eventually found the courage to reach out to her - tough situation for any kid/young adult to have to face.

    We have a policy here...abuse is not a thing we rank by event eg touching is less serious than penetrative assaults. Rather we believe that what matters is the impact it has on the person who experienced it...the traumatic damage and issue it causes them.

    I hope what I have shared helps as you continue to process the not ok behaviour you lived through...its after effects.

    Dunno if you have visited out library (link in the header) we have some resources on child sexual abuse there that you may find helpful.
    Rest in my arms precious child; cradled and warm. You are safe. The war is over.

  3. The following 3 users say thank you to Jane for this useful post:

    Manya (10-03-2017),Sunfl0wer (10-02-2017),weepingwillow (10-08-2017)

  4. #3
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    we also got stuff on emotional abuse of children, made me think of mind games in particular. and of neglect: beating mom, kicking you out of the house. plus, making you sit on his lap at 13-15 and flicking and tapping your behind and chest - prolly not enough to convict of molestation in criminal court, but could be enough to get child protective services involved. im not trying to define your experience for you, its your call, but just saying that criminal law is not all theres to it. cuz i relate to this approach, that if something isnt a crime - it must be all ok then. while it isnt. every person and every organization defines things differently. police has one definition, cps has another. cps cant lock people up, but can remove children from custody, even if no crime was committed, just cuz they feel its in the best interest of the child.

    truly sorry it happened to you
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  5. The following 3 users say thank you to Manya for this useful post:

    Jane (10-03-2017),Sunfl0wer (10-03-2017),weepingwillow (10-08-2017)

  6. #4
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    Speaking mostly to your title, gotta say, labeling behaviors (and people) was a huge coping mechanism for me that began as a teen. I recall thinking that a lot of stuff going on in my home was not ok, I just had no way "to prove" it, or no words to describe it at that time. I got a hold of my older sis book of "Abnormal Psychology" and read feverishly. Light bulbs began turning on in my brain. The book had names for the persistent odd behaviors of the folks I was growning up around. It described abusive dynamics, traits that occur, characteristics that I just couldn't put my finger on but just did not feel right with me. I had never felt so understood and validated in all my life! I felt so hopeful that "normal" and "healthier" not only existed, but was something I could relate better to and achieve outside of these people raising me in foster care. Before that moment, I wondered if the whole world was in fact this twisted. However, after that moment, I realized that they deviated from what was considered "ok."

    I am a fan of having a variety of coping mechanisms to choose from...and sometimes I choose labeling, or intellectualizing things....sometimes other stuff.

    In terms of healing tho, I agree with the others... really what matters in healing is the impact it had on the individual. (Rather than how an external person like therapist, police or judge want to call it.)

    For example, I once had a guy speak of what a gun can do. He was making a covert threat to me. Was threatening to kill me to describe how the ammo tears into the person. It was very very hard for me to explain to my supervisor at work that I was not going to be meeting with this man again as he was threatening me. She felt him discussing the gun was likely harmless and she did not fully appreciate the nuances/circumstances of this situation. Yet, when I told someone else working with him, she told me not to go back, that she actually had a list of several who also refused to see this man for similar reasons. So, in my head, labeling this behavior a "covert threat" felt important. More important tho was that I was honoring my own feelings of feeling not safe and looking for ways to protect myself, even if no one would believe my label of "covert threat," I realized it was possible no one would agree with that description I made...and equally important is for me to still listen to how this situatiin was impacting me.

    Another short situation...
    I had a much older cousing who did some touching similar to what you describe. I was about 8 when my breast began developing. He took this as opportunity to twist them like some joke. It confused the heck outta me. Like how is that even enjoyable? He also looked for ways for us to be rough housing as though we were both having fun, when in reality I was not liking it and often getting hurt. Yet, his play did not appear mean to any outsider. He seemed to be walking a border he created on how far he could go. Idk what to call his behavior. He was about 9 or so years older than me. Was I getting "molested" idk really. "Assaulted?" Maybe call it "grooming?" Not so clear on that one either. I mean, I actually thought thta we were playing often and having fun, well, until it wasn't fun. Maybe he was only ever "playing" as a means to slip in that one nipple twist? Idk. What happened several years later...he did escalate to raping me. So now knowing he was capable of raping me do I call the past "grooming?" I seriously don't know. Also, for me, I hesitate some to call it grooming because he did more than try to "befriend" me. He actually WAS crossing appropriate boundaries imo. So imo, even without the context of a rape, it is STILL not ok to be covertly finding ways and opportunities to graze, touch persons privates...align privates via sitting on a lap, or like once someone lifted and carried me in a pool with our clothed privates in alignment, etc....just not ok stuff in it's own right.

    I guess in my head...when I am hanging with kids....I am very mindful of being respectful, not just not imposing myself on someone (like my son would freak if he accidentally saw me nude even tho less a biggie for me) and I certainly would be respectful of them as growing beings that have their own desires for physical boundaries and such. (I'm a strong believer in if a kid says no to a hug, I respect that) I guess this last bit I am saying is sometimes I wonder why I struggle so hard in accepting that stuff done to me...was not ok? Why do I struggle when I would never do the same to another kid because it is clear, when it is not me, thta it is not ok? So struggling to overcoming the affects of having been objectified, having had a cousin who thinks my body is his for the taking so long as his behavior is covert enough, I am to be objectified. So I guess I sort of accidentally am also objectifying myself (I guess this is an affect from being treated this way) in a way by having to work hard to realize, I am a person who has a right to not have unwanted/inappropriate touch to me...just like I feel everyone else deserves to not have unwanted/inappropriate touch to them. Logically I understand to not objectify myself...can get offended if someone treats me less than a person worthy of respect. Emotionally, I do not always realize this is an area where more growth can happen...for me to treat myself as equally worthy of being a "self" compared to others.
    Had I not created my whole world. I would certainly have died in other peopleís. ~Anias Nin

  7. The following user says thank you to Sunfl0wer for this useful post:

    weepingwillow (10-08-2017)

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