Manipulation

Manipulation

105 19

This will be the first time I have ever fully told my story. The last time I was abused was 16 years ago. It still affects me today. Hopefully with telling my story, from my perspective, it will help me heal. Here it goes…

My mom was in a relationship with a woman 10 years younger than her. (I wasn’t going to use her name, but I don’t feel the need to protect her anymore.) Her name is Heather. Because of this I related very well to her. We listened to the same music, she would let me drive her car. I loved hanging out with her. For a 12 year old hanging out with a 20 year old was cool. She always told me I was mature for my age. That made me feel good. 

So we would hang out a lot. She would pick me up from school. She was teaching me how to drive, so we would “cruise” around for hours. Eventually we started flirting with each other. I started developing a crush on her. The flirting became more and more frequent. Then one weekend we all went camping. The camping trip was with my mom, Heather, myself, my best friend, and her mom. My best friend and I wanted Heather to stay in the tent with us, so she did. We stayed up late talking and then my friend fell asleep. Heather asked if she could kiss me. I had never been kissed before and didn’t know what to do. I knew it was wrong, but I also knew I had a crush on her. So it happened. I was 12 years old and my first kiss was from my moms girlfriend. Why did I feel so good even though I knew it was wrong? 

I thought that was going to be it. We kissed once in a tent while my best friend slept next to us. Then it happened again in my aunts basement, while everyone else was upstairs. And it happened again, while we were driving around. And again, while we were at my house alone. And it happened again, and again, and again….

Then it went further. 

Everything was moving so fast. How can I tell her to stop? I’ve let this go on for so long now, I can’t tell her to stop. At 12 years old I have lost my innocence. I don’t know if I can consider it my virginity, because it was with a female. My perspective says yes. 

This goes on for about a year. Then my mom finds out. She reads my diary, which had details about our camping trip. Instead of comforting me and letting me know it wasn’t my fault, she calls the cops. She tells them they need to remove me from my home and so they take me. 

A lot of things during this period are foggy. I remember going to the police station a lot and talking to detectives. I wouldn’t tell them anything, because I didn’t want Heather to get in trouble. My mom put a two year restraining order on her. And I thought it was over. I was wrong.

6 months go by. I go into my moms room to grab a nail clipper and there she is. Laying in my moms bed. My mom put me through living hell. She called the cops on me, had me taken from my home. She never asked me about what happened. She never reassured me that it wasn’t my fault and that she loved me. My mom hated me. She hated me because I was the person her girlfriend was cheating on her with. She took her back. And because she took her back, that also meant I couldn’t escape from her. 

Now, I also have to mention my mom, Heather, and my moms new girlfriend were all using drugs at this time. A lot of weird shit was going on. Heather was writing on my mirror in my bedroom “they can never keep us apart”. She was showering with my belongings. She was harassing me. At this point I was fearing for my safety.  

I had stopped coming home. My mom would call the cops on me every other day for not coming home. When I was home my abuser was there and my mom would do nothing to stop her. I was ordered to see a councilor, but I was too scared to say anything. I didn’t  want to get Heather in trouble because of the restraining order. I didn’t want to get my mom in trouble because she already hated me. I was stuck. So I wouldn’t go home and I kept getting in trouble. 

A lot of things happened within that 2 year time period. During a vital time of my life. I can’t tell you when it ended, but at least it did. To this day I have commitment issues. My mom and I still don’t talk about it. She has never heard my perspective. We have both grown a lot. I’d like to say I forgive her, and a lot of days I do. But when I think about it, tears fill my eyes. Why wasn’t she on my side? While it may not have been sexual abuse in the way most people think, it was still abuse. I was manipulated into sexual acts with a grown woman. I know it wasn’t my fault at age 30, but that’s not who needed to hear that. A 12 year old little girl was the one who needed to hear that. 

It wasn’t your fault! 


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19 comments

  1. Jade Volunteer

    Thank you for trusting us and sharing this with us. It was brave of you to reach out and tell your story. I’m so sorry that happened to you. That woman took advantage of you and manipulated you and she had no right. I’m sorry that your mom wasn’t the best support through such a traumatic time in your life, and I’m sorry that she never allowed you to tell you side. You deserved support through that and although I couldn’t give it to you then, I hope I can now. You are a strong individual who deserves happiness. Please don’t ever stop fighting, and remember we are always here for you.

  2. blashea

    Hi, I am so sorry that this happened to you and that your trust was betrayed in that way. I am also sorry that you didn’t receive the support that you deserved. We are all here for you and support you. I am glad that you are safe now and that your relationship with your mother has improved. I hope you know how proud we are of you and your strength. You are so brave. Please let us know if there is anything that we can do to help you.

  3. Jess Volunteer

    I am so sorry this happened to you and I’m even more sorry that your mom didn’t protect you in the way you needed. You’re right in saying that you were not at fault and you had a right for your mother to hear you and be on your side. It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t the “typical” abuse, it was sexual abuse. You were young and manipulated by someone you trusted. That will never be your fault.

    I saw your comment down below about having trouble sharing your vulnerability. Personally, I think it takes time. You said you’ve tried seeing a therapist a few times – did you see one consistently or try multiple over different times in your life? I know I didn’t trust the therapist I saw when I was in high school, but that was because I saw her all of three times and then quit going, which I now realize was my own way of avoiding sharing the things I had been through and was feeling. I think if I would have kept going, I would have eventually felt comfortable enough sharing and maybe found my way sooner. It can be incredibly difficult sharing vulnerability, so give yourself time to trust whoever it ends up being. As far as bringing what happened up – if it’s a therapist, they typically ask a lot of questions about why exactly you’re there and try to get your history. It usually ends up coming into play organically. If you find it doesn’t, just tell the person that you have something you want to share that may be hard to hear. I’ve shared my story with people who weren’t therapists by simply telling them I trust them and want to share some of my history with them. It’s up to how you feel comfortable sharing, but start slow. Vulnerability is difficult to process and cope with, so do it as you’re comfortable. Don’t push yourself too hard.

    Stay strong, Eixel. If there is any way we can help you further, please let us know. If you want, continue to share your story with us and update us. We are always here and we believe you. Sending healing thoughts your way. <3
    -Jess

  4. SAF Volunteer

    Hi Eixel,
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I’m so sorry you had to go through that. And you’re absolutely correct, it is not and never was your fault and I’m sorry you didn’t have someone to tell you that then. Speaking your truth can sometimes be the first step to healing. Talking through the abuse can help to work on the emotions surrounding it. Let us know if there’s anything we can do to help.
    Stay Strong,
    Stella

  5. nicolegorman Volunteer

    Eixel,

    Thank you for telling this story. I’m so sorry you were taken advantage of in this way by someone you considered a friend and thought cared about you. I’m also sorry for the strain that this put on your relationship with your mother. Going through this abuse must have been painful enough without the reaction that your mother had to it. Both of these things were unfair to you, as the victim of sexual abuse. I’m glad you’e come to realize that none of this was your fault but I wish you could have known that sooner. Everyone heals differently so it’s okay if you don’t forgive your mom yet, or ever. Whatever you need to recover and whenever you do it is up to you.

  6. jamie.lynn Volunteer

    Eixel,
    I am so sorry that this happened to you! I so appreciate you trusting us with your story! I can feel your hurt through your story and I am so sorry that your mother wasn’t there for you when you needed her. I am sorry that her response wasn’t what the 12 year old you needed at that time. I am glad that you are here and I am glad that you told your 12 year old self that is wasn’t her fault. You are totally correct.. it wasn’t your fault!! We are here for you any way we can help!

    -jamie

  7. sfmbelle413

    Hey there Eixel,

    I appreciate you sharing your story. I know how hard it can be to open up sometimes. I hope you found comfort in sharing what happened and knowing you’re not alone.

    You’re absolutely right, it was not your fault – at age 12 or age 30. And it was abuse. It can be devastating to feel your mom didn’t protect you and put you out – and it’s completely normal to have this feeling creep up on you years later. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do for you. We are always here.

    Keep fighting,
    SFM

  8. alexcostello Volunteer

    Hi there Eixel,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, It has taken so much courage and you should be so proud of yourself, we are incredibly proud of you.

    First I wanted to say that I am so sorry that this happened to you, and especially so considering that that this is someone that you should be able to trust. I can’t imagine the confusion and hurt that this has caused you. Most importantly I want you to know that this isn’t your fault by any means, and you did nothing to deserve this. Your mother should have offered you support and kindness, both you deserved.

    I read in your subsequent comment that you want to feel that it is difficult to kind of speak to a therapist or a counsellor about what you have experienced, which is totally understandable. I think as Solongago mentioned the most important thing is building up that sense of trust and confidence in them that they will be able to guide you through what has happened to you, which can definitely take some time. I think a major reminder is that if you meet a therapist and you don’t feel entirely confident in them or comfortable with them, know that that isn’t your fault either. Finding a therapist is a really personal experience so it may take a little bit of time to find someone that feels like the perfect fit. Your voice and your story is your most powerful healing source but it does take time to exercise it, so be patient with yourself and the process.
    Here for you always,
    Alex

  9. CarmenR Volunteer

    You are absolutely right, it was not your fault. You didn’t deserve what happened to you, and I’m sorry that it did. I’m sorry that your mom didn’t protect you when she was supposed to. You deserved a parent who believed and supported you. Thank you for sharing with us. Is there anything we can do to help you further? We believe you, we support you, and you are alwasy welcome here.

    Carmen

  10. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    I am so sorry for everything that happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of this, and this wasn’t your fault. I’m so sorry your mom did not support you, you didn’t deserve that either. You deserved to be supported by her. I’m sorry your mom betrayed you like that. Thank you for sharing your story-let us know if there is anything else we can do to help you.

    Erin

  11. music2799 Volunteer

    Hi Eixel,
    I’m really sorry that you’ve been through so much. You’re right – it was manipulation and abuse. Your assailant should not have put you in those situations. None of what she did was your fault, and you didn’t deserve it. I’m glad that you know this now, but I’m so sorry that your mother didn’t support you while it was happening. You deserve – and still deserve – support.
    Your feelings are understandable when it comes to forgiving your mother. On some days, it comes back to haunt us, and we won’t feel like forgiving them. On other days, it’s easier for us to forgive. It’s okay to feel differently about this on any given day. There’s no one way to feel about all this.
    As for sharing your story with your counselor, you can take as much time as you need for that. You might not feel ready to bring it up yet, and that’s okay. Maybe you could do it gradually. For example, on one day, you could say, “I went through something in my childhood years that really affected me, but it’s hard for me to tell the full story.” Then on the next day, you could reveal more details (as much as you feel comfortable with). Eventually, the counselor may know the whole story.
    Thank you for trusting us with your story. Sharing your story is such a brave thing to do. We’re here to support you, so please feel free to write back if you need anything. Continue to stay strong.

  12. Marissa Volunteer

    Hey Eixel,

    Thanks for sharing with us. I’m so sorry you were put through such a nightmare, especially by someone that was supposed to protect you. It’s okay that you’re still upset about it. You were only 12 years old and you were treated terribly in different ways by different people. It might help to forgive your mom, but I know that’s a lot easier said than done, and you don’t have to if you can’t bring yourself to. It’s completely up to you.

    Have you talked to anyone else about this, like a professional? Maybe they could help you sort through the fuzzy parts. If you don’t want to, though, you can always come back to us. We are here to help you. Please know that.

    Marissa

  13. Northlane1991 Volunteer

    Hey
    Thank you for sharing your story and i am so sorry this happeend to you. Your mother was supposed to be your watcher and guardian. You were a child and this should have never happened to you or anyone. I can understand it is difficult to talk with the cousenlor. none of this was your fault and just know we are here for you to support you. We hear your concerns and i understand your pain and i am so sorry this happened to you. You are a fighter for sure and keep us posted. For the therapist just start looking around and see who you connect and feel most comfortable with. Again i am so sorry this happened to you and if you need more support we are here for you.

  14. Solongago

    How do you bring it up? In therapy? You start when you are shopping for a therapist. You call the office and ask, “I’m looking for a therapist who works with folks who have been sexually abused.”

    In the first session or two they ask a bunch of questions and stuff comes up.

    Don’t be discouraged if you don’t work on it right away though. It is actually better to build a relationship and trust with your therapist, and prepare your own support system, skills etc, before diving into the deep end.

    It would be nice if we could walk into that first session, say this is what happened to me, and they could have you do 3 our fathers and 3 hail Mary’s, wave their magic wand, say the magic words, have you take two aspirins and it will all be done in the morning.

    The thing is, it just isn’t simple. We are complicated. Our brains were arrested when this happened to us so young. Our brains had to go into survival mode. Our brains had to distort reality somewhat to get us through an impossible reality. The beautiful thing is that you survived. But there is a cost. Some of what our brains did to get us through those years, isn’t helpful now. Sometimes we split off our feelings, and in order to be happy and healthy we have to get that part of us back. We have to learn stuff we missed because we were too busy surviving when we should have been learning those things. We have learn how to be in good relationships. We have to learn that we deserve someone who will love us and care for us. Some of us have to learn what that looks like.

    It takes some time. You were betrayed by someone who should have had a hands-off policy if nothing else. In fact, this person should have stood beside your mother in protecting you and wanting what was best for you. Instead this person preyed on you. And your mother was weak. She chose her girl friend over you. It is going to take time to work through the anger and the pain and the shame of what this woman did, and your mother too. In the course of all this, you have to learn how this affects your life now. It can seem like a daunting task. And having a guide through it can help you immensely.

    The good news is that you are young, and if you go through this and get to the other side, you have an opportunity to change patterns of abuse in your life now, and in the lives the folks you come into contact with, your children (if and when you have any), a spouse, deep friendships. Look at this as an investment in you. You are worth the investment.

  15. Eixel

    Thank you all very much for the support. I have tried seeing a therapist a few different times, but I have never been able to get it out. I don’t usually show my feelings and hate being vulnerable. Anytime I feel like I am about to cry I shut down. I would like to be able to talk about it, I just don’t know how to start. How do you bring something like this up? Again, thanks for the comments! It means a lot

  16. Thomas Volunteer

    Hi Eixel,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am so sorry that this has happened to you and I am heartbroken that your mother wasn’t there to support you, tell you it wasn’t your fault, and keep you safe. A mother should protect her children and you did not deserve any of this. It is okay to sometimes feel like you forgive your mother and sometimes you don’t. Feelings can fluctuate. That’s part of the healing process. That’s your experience and that’s valid. You’ve gone through a lot, but you’ve managed to peservere through it all. Don’t forget that it was your strength that got you through it. You are strong, and while 12 year old you didn’t get the message “it’s not your fault” that she needed, you have that message now. And you’re still here. You are also not alone. We are here for you. Please let us know if there is anything else we can do to help you. Our “Find Help” tab has various services such as counseling and hotlines that could be of use. However, there is no pressure. Everyone’s path is different. Stay strong.

    Thomas

  17. kelly Day Captain

    Hi, Eixel. I’m so sorry that happened to you. Your mom should have protected you. You were just a child and in no way was this your fault and you were not responsible for what those adults did. Adults are the ones who know better and are supposed to protect children from this. Thank you for trusting us with your story. I hope it helps to finally get it out. I know the more I get comfortable talking about the childhood sexual abuse I experienced, the more I feel like I’m taking back the power that was stolen from me when I was a kid. I think you’re amazing for surviving all of that and essentially raising yourself at that point. Don’t blame yourself for not speaking up at the time. You did what you had to do to protect yourself. If you feel like talking to a therapist or going to a support group let us know. We can help you with resources in your area. My therapist and support group have been so vital to my own healing. We’re here for you if you want to share more. You’re not alone.

  18. Julia Mandel Day Captain

    Thank you so much for sharing your story and reaching out to us. You are absolutely right in saying it was not your fault! I am sorry that you did not get that support from your mom and that you dealt with so much pain at such a young age. How are you doing today? It is normal to have commitment issues after what you went through and it will take time to heal from everything, and that is ok. Take your time to do what you need to in order to feel better. Please let us know if we can do anything to help and support you as well. We are always here for you <3

  19. rkr18 Volunteer

    Eixel,

    Thank you for trusting us and sharing your personal story. I am so sorry this happened to you, you did not deserve it and it was not your fault. I understand it is hard to forgive and to forgive someone takes time and that time is determined by you. Have you been to a counselor or therapist for support? If not please check out the resources we have on our website. Please let us know if you need anything and stay strong.
    -Marie