(an encore post)
This is a second post from Brad.
The worst part of the abuse wasn't what happened, but it was the effect of the abuse. Marvin did it to me only three times. Then I told my parents that I didn't like Marvin. I don’t remember what I said but they didn't hire him again.
The abuse was over but the effects weren't. Something is wrong with me. I'm not normal. I won't say I thought like that every day, but often enough.
I've read about the results of abuse from a lot of guys. Mine was that I couldn't—really couldn't—express affection. When I touched someone it felt as if something inside my head yelled, "That's wrong!"
My pastor let me come into his office every week for more than a year. I cried and I told him some of the same things again and again. And he listened. I guess that's what helped most of all.
One day he hugged me and I can only say that it didn't confuse me because I knew he cared about me. I hugged him back—very, very gently.
I still struggle. I've been married for two years and I've told my wife my problem and she's understanding.
I can't believe I still struggle with the abuse, but I do. I'm getting better. It's slow, but I'm getting better.