Childhood Abuse

When I was 9, my parents divorced. It turned out my dad had been cheating on my mom with a woman who worked for him. She had 3 kids with 3 different men, two of which were adults living away from home and one son who was 15 or 16 at the time. Let’s call him D. From the first day I met D, he employed extreme physical, emotional and psychological abuse against my brother and me, things like calling us names, telling us we were worthless and stupid, pinning us down, hitting us, pushing us, dominating us in every way he could think of. He forced us to lie for him, and threatened us with physical harm if we didn’t comply. He would have angry outbursts over tiny things that were never consistent, half the time he ignored us and half the time he would flip his lid if we spoke too loudly. Among other things of course. He would taunt and harass my brother and me to the point of tears and then angrily abuse us for crying, saying we were “too old” to cry. He had arbitrary rules about what things in the house were his and therefore were off limits for us, such as certain foods and control of the tv. His mother, our step mother, fully sided with him and treated us like animals, we weren’t even allowed to exist around her. We were kept watching television in the basement during visits and weren’t allowed out of that room unless given express permission from her. It’s not a huge surprise D turned into an abusive narcissist, after growing up with an abusive narcissist for a mother. 

This is just a little bit of background to give the idea of my relationship with D before the sexual abuse started. He started by switching to a gentle and funny personality, and asking me to massage his back for him. I was 9 or 10, he was 15-17. I, of course, was terrified to refuse anything he asked me, and I was eager to do whatever I could to keep him in a “nice” mood. He then escalated to playing “dress up” with me, where we would go to his room and I would dress in all his clothes. This was always silly and playful for me, a young girl, dressing in a teenage boy’s clothing. It feels a lot weirder looking back as an adult. He then started inviting me into his bed at night, where he would put his hand down my pants and talk about sexual acts and sexually explicit things with me. This eventually escalated to me touching him, after he told me to. I was always afraid to contradict him or to say no to him, and I was always uncomfortable with these sex acts taking place. It eventually stopped when my dad and step mom moved out of the country and I stopped seeing D all together. Throughout my young adulthood, we crossed paths a few more times, with some more inappropriate behaviour on his part, though nothing of the magnitude of the events from my childhood. 

I never told anyone this, because I always believed it wasn’t “real” sexual abuse and I was convinced nobody would believe me. This happened 20 years ago, in a place that holds extremely conservative views and honestly is a breeding ground for people like D and the abuse they perpetuate. I never told my mom because I know it will only make her feel awful, and I never told my dad because he’s completely under my step moms thumb and she sees D as a golden child, so who knows the drama I could cause by bringing it up. My brother ended up briefly acknowledging that he suffered sexual abuse at the hands of an older male relative, which I can be almost certain was D, due to the fact he abused me too, but I’ve never found any further details about my brother’s abuse. 

Thanks for letting me get this story off my chest, I’ve written about it in my journal but it’s nice to think someone else may know my story too. 


Join the Conversation

23 comments

  1. candyappleb Volunteer

    Hi TheDarknessHummed,

    I’m so sorry that you endured so much at the hands of your step brother. Thank you for sharing your story with us. We’re always here to listen and support you in anyway. We believe you. Please feel free to share again anytime.

    All the best,
    Becca

  2. tayestlack Volunteer

    hello love, thank you for coming to us with your story. i’m so sorry D abused you in so many ways. But you are so strong for speaking your story to us and if you find the right words to tell you mom, i hope she’s supportive and i hope you know you’re not alone and we’re all here for you. you are so strong and brave and don’t forget it. keep holding your head up high

  3. Ashley Day Captain

    Thank you for taking the time to share your story with our community, TheDarknessHummed.

    I’m sorry that D was emotionally, physically, and psychologically abusive. You mentioned that his outbursts were inconsistent; I’m thinking you felt like you were walking on eggshells around him. His mother had no right to mistreat you or your brother. Since D was abusive, it’s understandable that you felt fearful about what he might do if you hadn’t listened to him. The blame lies on D’s shoulders. Please know you did nothing wrong.

    It has been a few days since you posted your story and I hope you’ll come back to let us know how you’re doing. I believe you.

    Ashley

  4. Breanna Grunthal Volunteer

    Hi TheDarknessHummed,

    Thank you for coming to share your story with us. I am sorry for all that you’ve been through and how you’ve been holding this weight by yourself for so long. None of this was your fault. We believe you, and we are here to support you. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help. I wish you the best of luck while you heal. You got this!

    Sending you love and support,
    Bre

  5. Jess Volunteer

    I am so sorry that D did this to you and that you haven’t felt safe or comfortable sharing your story with anyone. You absolutely did not deserve what he did to you or the way his mother treated you. He knew what he was doing was wrong.

    Thank you for trusting us with your story. You are no longer alone with your story and if you need anything else at all, we are always here. Stay strong and keep fighting. <3
    -Jess

  6. Bluebell13 Volunteer

    Dear TheDarknessHummed,
    Thank you for trusting us with your story. We believe you and we are glad that you are safe now. I hope that telling your story here helps with your healing journey. Our Find Help tab has a variety of resources that may interest you and also help with your healing. We are here to listen any time you need to talk, so feel free to write as often as you would like. You are no longer alone with your story:-)
    Sending you love and strength,
    Roxie

  7. Marissa Day Captain

    Hi TheDarknessHummed,

    Thanks for sharing your story with us. I’m so sorry D did this to you and that you didn’t feel like you were able to talk to anyone about it. You didn’t deserve that kind of treatment from him, or any abuse from him or his mother. You didn’t do anything wrong. I completely understand how you thought it was kind of silly to wear his clothes and to look back on it and think of how strange it really was. He was old enough to know what he was doing was wrong – even you were old enough to know, but his control kept you quiet. That’s not ok.

    Please let us know if there’s anything we can do for you. We’re here to help. Come back and post again if you need to.

    Marissa

  8. Ryan4121 Volunteer

    Thank you, so much, for sharing your story. We are so sorry it happened to you and feel thankful you were brave enough to share with us. I’m glad you appear to be in a much safer place. If there is anything we can do to help, please let us know.

    Ryan

  9. Kayla Volunteer

    TheDarknessHummed,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us, we are here for you in anyway we can be. I hope sharing with us makes you feel empowered, because you are so strong. It sounds like you’re in a much safer place and situation, and removed from D for the most part, which is good. I’m sorry for everything he did to you and your family Hopefully the distance allows you to heal. Sending you love.

  10. dzreid Volunteer

    Hi there!
    Thank you for sharing with us. Sharing our story is never easy. I’m sorry you experienced all you did. I hope you have found some comfort & are in a safe place. I know for me, sharing (especially for the first time) is so freeing. Sharing what happened is never an easy task but does get easier in time. You are very courageous. No one should be forced into a silence especially from being abused! I’m so glad that you are able to break your silence by sharing on here! I hope that this will be the first step on your journey towards healing. Seeking a therapist that specializes in trauma could also help. I wish you the best. Come on here & share whenever you can. Take care of you. I believe you & in you! You can get through all the horribleness of your childhood.
    Dawn

  11. Alyssa Day Captain

    Hi TheDarknessHummed,
    I’m so sorry this happened. We believe you. You didn’t deserve this nor did your brother. It is possible that D did something to your brother, but if you don’t want to ask you don’t have. You shouldn’t have had to experience what he did to you. This wasn’t your fault. What he did was wrong and he should have known better because of his age. I’m proud of you fr sharing your story with us. That was very brave. We are always here for you. If there is anything you need help with please let us know. Thank you for trusting and sharing your story with AVFTI. Continue to stay strong.
    -Alyssa

  12. zelda Volunteer

    First of all, I wanna say that I’m so, so sorry that you experienced so much abuse as a young child. Nobody should have to go through that. I really hope that you have got some healing from those awful memories, and I hope that now you’re in a place where you can be happy and healthy, away from the Hell that was your past. I think it’s very brave of you to come here and share your story. Just know that we all believe you and that we’re here for whatever you need, whether it be support, love, or resources.

  13. Shannon Volunteer

    Hey TheDarknessHummed ,

    Thank you for sharing with us, we are happy that you were able to get your story off your chest and talk about it. that can be a really tough thing to do, you should be incredibly proud of yourself.

    Shannon

  14. Amysue43 Volunteer

    Thank you for sharing! I’m sorry for what you’ve gone through. You didn’t deserve any of it, nor was any of it your fault. You were put in a situation that was out of your control.
    I hope that things are better now that you don’t see D nearly as often. Perhaps, reconnecting with your brother with regard to the instances you all experienced at the same time could help you all heal together. Your brother may be experiencing similar feelings that you are and/or have the concerns you have with this weight on your chest. You all could encourage each other. This is merely a suggestion/idea that you may consider, or not. 🙂
    If you’d like, we’d love for you to utilize this resource as another aspect of your journaling.
    Stay strong <3

  15. Lizzi

    Hey TheDarknessHummed,
    I’m so sorry for what happened to you as a child. I’m so proud of you for opening up about it, as I’m sure this wasn’t easy to write and share. You didn’t deserve to go through any of this abuse, and none of it was your fault. Thank you for trusting your story with us. If you need any support, you can find resources at the Find Help tab at the top of this page. Also know that we believe you and we’re always here to support you.

  16. Megan Volunteer

    Hey TheDarknessHummed,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am so sorry about everything you went through. I can imagine it must have been pretty confusing and scary. I can also understand how hard it can be trying to cope with what happened to you, figuring out if it was abuse, and feeling like you can’t talk to anyone about it. I just want to say that you are so strong for making it through all of this and continuing to fight. I am proud of you.

    We are always here if you need anything,
    Megan

  17. musicislove

    Hi Thedarknesshummed,

    Thank you for trusting us and sharing your story with us. I’m so sorry for what you went through when you were younger, none of it was your fault. It can be very therapeutic to tell others what happened to you so I hope sharing with us was helpful for you, we’re always here and we’ll always believe you.

    Delaney

  18. rkr18 Volunteer

    Hello thedarknesshummed,

    I am truly sorry you had to experience all this abuse. I appreciate you sharing your story and it was not your fault. I’m sure it made it tougher that you couldn’t share it with your parents. I pray that you find peace. Please keep us updated and we are here for you.

    -Marie

  19. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am so sorry for what happened to you. You didn’t deserve this, and this wasn’t your fault. I hope it helped to share here, and we believe you. We support you.

    Erin

  20. mikaylaanne11 Volunteer

    Hey there TheDarknessHummed,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. A lot of times, it’s cathartic to share with others. We believe you and are here any time you want to talk. It’s important to remember that you aren’t at fault for D’s behavior or anything that happened to you. It sounds like he groomed you from a young age and craved power over others. Have you ever considered seeing a therapist to continue to healing journey? Seeking out a trauma-specialized therapist has helped me process my experiences. Even if you’re not seeking a therapist, we have some other wonderful resources in our “Find Help” tab, and some of it might resonate with you.

    I’m glad you found us, and we support you.

  21. Julia Mandel Day Captain

    Thank you for sharing with us. We are always here to listen and support you in any way that we can! If you feel the abuse was real, then it was; your feelings are completely valid. I am glad you are in a safe place away from him now. Would you be comfortable talking to your brother about his abuse? Maybe you can help each other heal from it, but of course that is completely up to you. Please let us know if we can do anything further to support you. Stay strong <3

  22. Solongago

    I believe you, and none of that was your fault at all. Your step brother took advantage of you and was horrible to you, and if you don’t want to have anything to do with your step mom, that is totally reasonable. Your dad too. I am sorry you had this experience, and that people who should have been supportive and protective of you were selfish and neglectful. Because they were, you suffered sexual abuse as a child, and still are unable to fully experience what it is to have a loving, caring, supportive father. That is sad.

    But the good news is that you can heal, and have a good life. You deserve to have a good life. You have a brother who may be able to be a special sort of ally, one who shares childhood memories, and can understand you. You do not have to talk about this with him if that is uncomfortable, the facts are the facts, and it still makes a difference that he has had a similar experience, and you both shared a childhood, so if at all possible, make an effort to keep in touch with him.

    And the best revenge to the folks that hurt you is to have a good life, be successful in spite of what they did. It wouldn’t hurt to talk about this stuff with a professional. Remember always that you deserve good things and you can choose who shares your life and who does not.

  23. CarmenR Volunteer

    Hi there TheDarknessHummed,

    Thank you for trusting us with your story, and sharing with us. I am so sorry that this happened to you, but please know that it is not your fault and you are not to blame. You did nothing to deserve this. I just want to remind you how strong you are. You survived something horrible, but you are here and you are cared for. We here support you, and want to help you in any way we can. Is there anything we can do for you? Jounraling is a great way to cope and heal, and I’m happy that you were able to share with us. Have you considered talking to a therapist? It can be a really great way to have someone to share with and get help from, and many people have found it helpful. Stay strong, and know that you are always welcome here.

    Carmen