Some of us may have initiated abuse—after we became victimized. I question the reason was because we’d know what was coming. For me, I see it as habitual, learned behavior. We weren’t mature enough to know the difference between our need for love and the perp’s lust.
We help ourselves by remembering and focusing on our youth and innocence. Someone older groomed us and exploited us. Even if we sensed there was something wrong with what was happening, we had been carefully chosen and were easily convinced of the other’s love for us.
The analogy that comes to mind was my aversion to many vegetables when I was first married. My wife got me to eat a few Brussels sprouts. I didn’t like them. Over a period of weeks, she put one or two on my plate. Over time, I learned to enjoy them as well as cauliflower and other members of the cabbage family. Now they’re among my favorites.
Because we felt wanted and loved in our loneliness, why wouldn’t we sometimes initiate the abuse?
I started this series by asking if sexual harassment was different for men. My answer: The emotional results are much the same—lack of trust, doubting our self-work, afraid to speak, and the list goes on.
Perhaps we can form our own #MeToo movement to encourage more victimized males to speak up.
Thank you Cec. I think your conclusion is spot on. The emotional effects of sexual abuse plague the victim irrespective of the survivor's gender. Sexual abuse is a gender-blind phenomenon because abuse is always particular to the individuals involved. Although it may be true that the majority of survivors are women, that majority is not an overwhelming majority, and counting heads of survivors will never erase the minority experience. Men can be victims too. Men can be sexually abused too. 1 in 4 and 1 in 6, but we are all in this together. #mentoo
Thank you Cec for your post. After Jesus pulled me out of homosexuality, I wondered for a long time how I could've been so deluded to believe being sodomized was love. It took 12 more years, before the flashbacks and nightmares of being raped by my father, passed around to a group of men, etc. surfaced. That's when God gave me some of the answers I was looking for, including that I believed I was female and was attracted to something I believed I wasn't. The base lie from the enemy was "I created you, I brought you into this world for this purpose". It was sown into my life when I was being raped.
Sadly I too can relate, Mark. The lbgt community refuses to accept that such experiences can change your orientation but it does. No one is born this way I was fine tuned but I too felt deep down something was not right. Being drawn to certain acts was pre conditioned and old tapes can be re-written, thank God. I've seen it happen to others also. It takes time, it didn't happen over night but it can and does happen if the person really wants it to happen. God is a God of miracles as I well know.
I never deliberately initiated any kind of abusive activity from the perpetrators in my life - or from strangers either - though I have talked with survivors who have done either or both. It was too scary and unpleasant for me to want to repeat it. I was not groomed - it was always a dominator/victim relationship. For years I suppressed the memories of the abuse events. But at the same time, as a teen and adult, I was intrigued by porn photos that showed nude males. Later, when the memories resurfaced, I realized that the body types I had been attracted to and seeking out in images were similar to some of the perpetrators in my past. So the subconscious was coming through despite my revulsion at the original acts and even unawareness of the past for so long.
Thanks, guys for your comments. I've been down with pneumonia and unable to respond until now.
You guys are courageous--to open yourselves the way you do. Thank you. I hope it has helped you to open up; I know it has helped us in reading. We can understand your pain because we've felt it too.
Cec, this was spot on! I carried so much guilt with me for decades, because I initiated the abuse sometimes. I was confused about my sexuality as a result. And I never considered myself a victim. It was only in the last few years that realization came crashing down on me like a pile of bricks, and when it did, it was like a dam inside me just burst. Going through a lot of healing right now, and understanding more about myself than I ever have before.
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