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.

To Forgive Myself

(This blog post comes from Chris.)

I am a 43-year-old male and a survivor of sexual molestation by my older brother and another male at my foster home. My story must be told to help me heal.

It started at age 5. I remember that it felt good but wrong at the same time. This went on until I was about 14 years old. I was their plaything, and when it was happening to me I felt numb. When they were molesting me, I blocked everything out. I didn't want them to be upset with me.

I didn't tell my foster parents because I was scared of what they would think. In my teenage years, I was angry at the world. I had trouble finding a girlfriend and I had a hard time finding or keeping friends. For a time, I thought I was a homosexual but never really felt feelings toward men.

I got married at the age of 20 and had a daughter. I struggled with what my brother and that guy did to me when I was young. I hated them and I hated what they did to me. I became what I hated the most.

On March 15, 2009, I was sentenced to 5 to 10 years for molesting a female child. I felt like a monster, a pedophile. I didn't crave children, but my victim was very dear to me. I lost everything!

I believe God forgave me, but I couldn't forgive myself. I still have a hard time forgiving myself, for I know how much damage I've caused that little girl and her family and even my own family. I am slowly forgiving myself for the harm I've done.

I've been out of prison for six years. It may take the rest of my life to forgive myself. I have a great support team that helps me when I fall, and now that I have briefly told my story the healing can really begin.

2 comments:

Roger Mann said...

We are beginning to understand more about the reactions men have had to early conditioning sexual abuse can inflict on someone. It is pretty common for someone who has been abused to be very confused about their own sexuality. Sometimes there is an aversion to any form of sex. Sometimes there is an obsessive need to make sense, to understand what happened to them and why; what was going through their abusers mind and what it felt like for them. In the latter cases, some may indeed re-enact their abuse with others or even in rare cases become abusers themselves.

I personally believe this is due to not having anyone to talk to about what happened to them early on and how it is affecting them. It is very sad that with early intervention so much of this could be averted. But most men don't tell and for good reasons. A lot of times they are not believed and sometimes punished for being thought to spread lies about respected people. I never told myself for both of those reasons and there are others like the threats they received or retaliation.

I struggle all alone with my confusion and not having any degrees in Psychology at the age of 10, I did the best I knew how. It is easy to make bad choices when you have no information and the consequences can be devastating. I hope you were able to get some responsible help and can now make sense of an insane situation you went through. There is life after abuse but poor choices can severely alter one's course.

I pray that you are able to forgive yourself. What happened to you was not your fault. You are not alone by any means in that. You were conditioned to regard sex as a curiosity, recreation and harmless and it is not. I am not surprised at what eventually happened given that conditioning but I am encouraged and grateful that you are understanding and altering that conditioning and have a greater respect for the effects of what the misuse of the gift of our sexuality can have on a life.

God bless you my brother.

Mark said...

Chris

Thank you for taking this courageous step and sharing your story here. Your words will encourage and offer hope to many others.