I hurt for a long time because of childhood sexual abuse. Now I want to provide a safe place for hurting men to connect with other survivors of sexual abuse. Talk to us. You don't have to use your real name to share your experiences or ask questions.

"Something Is Wrong with Me"

One of the saddest, most painful meetings I had with a group of men who had been sexually abused was when I heard Ron say, "Something is wrong with me."

In the past, I had said those words to myself many times. I had learned that such a statement wasn't true, and I didn't want another man to repeat such a self-indictment.

"No, you aren't wrong or bad!" I probably shouted those words. "Something wrong and bad was done to you!"

The others nodded but Ron shook his head. The tears began to fall as he said, "I liked what he did. I hated it but I liked it."

George, the therapist in the group, leaned toward him. "You mean it was pleasurable? That you responded with an erection or that it felt good when you were abused?"

Ron nodded and more tears came.

Slowly and softly George explained, "It's a physiological response and it's automatic. You stimulate the penis and you get an erection."

I marveled at the compassion in his voice as he tried to make Ron realize that his reaction had been normal.

And he spoke healing words for several of us.

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