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.

"It's Not Too Late to Have a Happy Childhood"

I first read those words in a book by Claudia Black and I scoffed. "More psychobabble," I mumbled. But the words stayed with me and it took me at least a decade before I grasped what she meant.

Obviously, I can't re-do my childhood; I don't want to rewrite my early experiences. But I can emotionally embrace that crushed, beaten down, pain-stricken part of me from my childhood.

I've learned to show myself compassion and to understand my defenselessness. Instead of hating that part of myself, I'm able to emotionally hold that wounded boy tightly.

Because I'm a strong believer in self-affirmation statements, here's one thing I say several times each morning: I like who I am; I like who I used to be; I like who I'm becoming.

If that's what Black meant by it not being too late to have a happy childhood, I now agree with her.

I like who I am;
I like who I used to be;
and I like who I'm becoming.

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