In my own story and in the stories I know of other men who have been molested in childhood, we felt guilty. We were unable to reason out that the wrong was done to us, not that we were wrong. The self-blame seemed to come from realizing we suddenly "know too much." The culpability I accepted kept me from talking to anyone, or seeking safe adults to whom I could talk.
An insight, which helped overcome my sense of guilt, was to realize that I wasn’t the one who was tempted to do something that went against the laws of nature and God. Something abusive was done to me. By realizing that truth in my journey of seeking healing from the damage of the abuse, it becomes easier to believe that it wasn’t my fault and there was nothing I could have done differently.
I’ve also considered how my own abuse isn’t an excuse for actions that I’ve taken because of my brokenness. I’ve never sexually abused anyone, yet I’ve acted out of my own woundedness and I have hurt those I love the most. If people can still love me in spite of that, who am I to withhold love, grace, and forgiveness when I’ve been wronged?
I was never a perpetrator, but I might have been.
They assaulted us, and they are also victims.