Over 30 years on…

Over 30 years on…

257 23

I was recommended by a hospital counselor today to this website to maybe tell my story anonymously so that it’s out to people other than my personal counselor.

To start, I am a male. And I am fully aware that what happened to me is not nearly as bad as what has happened to others.

When i was around 7, I was at a neighbor girl’s home. She was a bit older, 10 or 11. There were several of us in her bedroom and we were all playing school. She was the principal and the rest of us were students. She would occasionally call a student into her “office”, which was her bedroom closet. When the “student” would enter and the closet door closed behind, we could hear her scolding them for either their grades or their behavior. It was loud, conspicuous and playful. Everyone seemed to be having a good time. When it was my turn to be called into the “office” it was a different story. She immediately began whispering and telling me that she loved me. She kissed me on the mouth, full tongue and moved her hands down the front of my pants. Being young and stupid, I followed suit and put my hands down the front of her pants. She kept saying she loved me and then a plan was made to meet another day, behind her father’s shed. I don’t remember much about that rest of that day. My next real memory starts when I was going behind the shed with her a day or so later. Behind the shed, we stripped down, made out more and proceeded to perform every sex act I can imagine, with the exception of full intercourse. During performing oral sex on her, she would frequently tell me to do it harder or faster. And in the end, when all was said and done, she sat straight up and started telling me how scared she was. It was a disturbing shift in tone and I remember being uncomfortable about it. We ended the day with her telling me that she wanted to meet out in a cord field that Thursday to have sex. I didn’t know what the word meant, so I didn’t go. She later pulled me aside in her garage and told me she no longer wanted to see me, and that her younger brother was better at kissing than I was. I was hurt and confused, but I took it and went on. She moved out of state shortly thereafter. Many, many years later, I learned that she, herself, was being sexually abused. I do not hate her, and, in fact, even though my wife tells me I’m crazy, I have nothing but compassion and concern for her. I hope she’s okay.

That is sort of the start. When I was about 11 or 12, we moved neighborhoods, and being foolish and young for my age, I befriended a naive young neighborhood boy, and we engaged in similar behaviors. Eventually, I woke up one day wondering what in the hell I was doing, then just stopped and never spoke of it again. When I was 22, I was called into a local detective’s office to recount what had happened to this now young man. I cannot get over being a part of his abuse, and creating the same kind of pain and confusion that I also have experienced and still struggle with today.

I am now in regular therapy, and the last horrible side effect of my experience of being seven finally came out to my therapist. With my first (and to date, most intense) sexual experience happening the way it did, my sexuality has become imprinted on the body of a 10 year old girl, and that attraction is still there. My therapist thinks by re-framing my experiences at 7, she thinks I can rewrite and/or minimize this despicable attraction to younger girls that my brain still harbors. Since the experience with the neighborhood boy when I was 12, I have never acted in any way inappropriate. I’ve not broken any laws and I stand firm in not ever wanting to harm a child. I want nobody else in the world to feel the way I feel (or worse, as I understand that my experience isn’t nearly as bad as those of others). This chain of abuse must die with me and the other two involved in my story.

Thanks for reading, and I hope that my childhood sins and the current sins of my mind don’t cause you to hate me as much as I hate myself.


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23 comments

  1. Sammie101 Volunteer

    Hello shelemyahu,

    Thank you for having the courage to recount such trauma. Firstly, understand there is nothing wrong with you, and what happened is horrible to imagine. I am truly sorry you had to experience any of it. No one hates you, and you are free and allowed to feel the things you are feeling. I’m happy to hear you are gaining help from a therapist, and I only hope it allows you to better heal. You are an incredibly strong person, and I’m proud of you for sharing and expressing yourself. You are not alone, and again, don’t ever feel bad for feeling how you do. You are you, and no one can take that from you.

  2. Alyssa Day Captain

    Hi shelemyahu,
    I’m so sorry this happened. Don’t down play what happened to you by saying others have it worse because every story is just as bad. It all shouldn’t have happened. I don’t hate you for what you did because you were young and didn’t know what you were doing. You shouldn’t hate yourself either because it’s not your fault. I think it’s great that you were told to write your story here and it sounds like your therapist is helping a lot. Thank you for trusting and sharing your story with AVFTI. Continue to stay strong. If you need anything else we are here for you.
    -Alyssa

  3. dzreid Volunteer

    Hello Shelemyahu,
    I am so glad that this site is here & your therapist connected you with it! It takes strength & courage to share to a therapist but even more so to come on a support page & share. I hope the responses will be an encouragement to you & offer hope! Everyone’s experience with abuse is different. Your abuse is yours. You are no different than others who were abused. I mean your feelings & emotions still are just as valid as any other survivor. I think that it takes a whole lot of self control & strength to stand strong in the sense of not wanting to ever abuse another! Be proud of yourself! I hope that you can continue finding ways to help you as you heal. You certainly didn’t deserve any of that! It’s also good to know that you finally trusted your counselor enough to open the door & share. Continue pressing on because you deserve the healing! Take care of yourself. Come back & share as often as you like.
    Dawn

  4. Natalie M Day Captain

    HI there,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us, and trusting us with such a hard time in your life. Please know that what happened to you at such a young age, was not your fault! I know it can be hard to see it that way, but it was not your fault. I think that in what you wrote you are doing all of the right things to heal from the trauma you endured. You are being honest and working toward healing. That is huge. That shows how strong you are and how hard you are working on yourself. I am proud of you for that. I could never hate you. And I want to encourage you to be kind to yourself. We are here for you. Let us know how we can support you. We will always be here if you would like to share with us again!! You are always welcome!

    Stay strong!!
    -Natalie

  5. Lizzi

    Hey shelemyahu,
    I’m so sorry for what happened to you at such a young age. It must have been really confusing what was happening and what you were doing, as you were too young to know how to handle this. None of this is your fault, and we definitely don’t hate you. We’re here for you and encourage you to continue to share if it will help you. I’m so proud of you for seeking help and talking about this with a professional. Thank you for trusting us with your story.

  6. Ashley Day Captain

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

    Please know that we don’t rate stories based on severity; your experience has affected you and you have the right to express yourself. Since you made the courageous decision to seek therapy, it’s evident that you are determined to take steps in the right direction by working through what happened in your past. Since both of you were affected by sexual abuse, it’s not abnormal that you feel concern and compassion towards your female neighbor.

    You are welcome here.

    Ashley

  7. candyappleb Volunteer

    Hi shelemyahu,

    I’m so sorry that you endured these traumatic events. Please know that we do not hate you. It was an extraordinary feat of courage to share with us. What happened to you is not your fault. I’m proud of you for seeking help and striving to correct inappropriate coping behaviors. We’re here for you! Please feel free to write again and share with us as needed. We’re here for you and we’d love to support you in any way that we can.

    All the best,
    Becca

  8. Northlane1991 Volunteer

    Thank you for sharing your story friend. I know it must have been hard and i can tell you are commited to getting help. Please keep fighting we are here for you!

  9. jcas120 Volunteer

    Shelemyahu,

    Thank you for taking the time to come here and tell us your story. I hope you know that we are a safe space of non judgement and compassion.

    I want to start off by saying that you’re doing a wonderful job so far and you’ve done so much difficult work already. Starting counseling is a difficult step that you accomplished, as is coming to AVFTI and sharing your story with us and you are doing a great job dealing with this situation

    The events that you went through as a child sound incredibly difficult. I can’t even begin to imagine what you are going through. That feeling of pain and confusion you mentioned is understandable and you have every right to feel this way and your story also showed us how resilient you are. I find it amazing that you have such a great sense of self awareness. It was heartwarming to hear that you did not hate that girl, but had compassion and concern for her. Your openness and courage you demonstrated show how empathetic of a person you are. The chain of abuse is a very real thing and by choosing to end it you took an incredible step. We here believe you and are rooting for you!

    We are always here to support you through this journey. AVFTI offers plenty of great resources and articles if you ever need them. Thank you for taking the time to come by and remember this is a safe space and you are always welcome back!

  10. sfmbelle413 Day Captain

    Hey there shelemyahu,

    Thank you for sharing your story. Just because it may not seem as bad as some others, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be told. You deserve to have your story heard and get the support you deserve. I can tell you’re committed to getting help, which is inspiring. If you ever need more immediate support, our friends at Crisis Text Line are here for you 24/7. You can reach them by texting VOICE to 741-741. Please keep on fighting.

    Sending light,
    SFM

  11. tayestlack Volunteer

    hello love, im so sorry this happened to you, but I am glad that you’ve found therapy and that you’ve spoken up. As children, we are very naive, and even now how you said your sexuality has imprinted on the 10-year-old girl, just as you did not know what was happening then, you cannot blame yourself for how the outcome has turned out. You are very strong and you’ve overcome so much, you’ll be able to overcome this as well. We’re all here for you, always, and none of us would ever hate you for what you have experienced. Keep your head up and stay strong

  12. rkr18 Volunteer

    Hi Shelemyahu,

    Thank you for sharing your story. I can imagine how hard it was for you to share your story it took a lot of courage. I believe the way to change a behavior is to talk about it. So don’t hate yourself and we don’t hate you. You are not your past, you are making changes to be a better version of yourself. We are always here for you so if you need anything let us know.

    -Marie

  13. mikaylaanne11 Volunteer

    Shelemyahu,

    I think it’s very brave of you to share this with us. It’s wonderful that you’re seeking counseling and are processing these experiences. We’re here for you in your journey. I don’t think it’s ever fair to ourselves to compare our traumas to others. What happened to you changed you and impacted you in a profound way. We believe you and never want to minimize your experience. It shouldn’t have happened the way that it did.

    It seems that your story is steeped in the cycles of abuse. It’s so hard to break out of these patterns that can sometimes go on for generations. It’s powerful that you’re being transparent with us and with your therapist. I think that sharing how this pattern affected you, your abuser, and the neighborhood boy are all important things to unpack and work through.

    Abuse is deep-rooted and nuanced, as are the effects of it. It sounds that you’re working very hard to heal, which is amazing. Know that you have a support system here, and you can always share your thoughts with us. Take a look through our “Find Help” section, too—you might find resources that stand out to you! Be patient with yourself.

  14. kelly Day Captain

    Hi, shelemyahu. Thanks for sharing your story. I’m really sorry that happened to you when you were a child. I’m so glad to hear you are getting help, though and that you found this site. You are not alone. Many abused children end up recreating their abuse with other children. I think it’s important to remember you were only a child. Children don’t always have the tools or the environment to process sexual abuse, and act out in the only way they know how.
    I think it’s great that you are being so proactive and don’t want to continue the cycle of abuse. One thing about the human brain is it’s remarkable ability to heal and create new neural pathways. Through things like therapy, meditation, medication, exercise, we can heal some of the damage trauma has done. It’s not easy, but I know you can do it. You are a survivor. Please let us know if we can help in any way. We’re here if you need us.

  15. Breanna Grunthal Volunteer

    Hi shelemyahu,

    Thank you for coming to share with us. I am so sorry for what happened to you when you were younger, and none of it was your fault. Here, we don’t hate you and there is no comparison of “not as bad as others” because at the end of the day, you shouldn’t have been violated the way you were and I hope you don’t feel the need to minimize your trauma. I am really glad to hear that you’re in therapy to process and heal from these childhood experiences, and I hope you find it helpful and healing. You deserve that. I trust and believe you when you say that you don’t want to harm anyone and want to end the chain of abuse. Your intentions are good, evidenced throughout this post and specifically that you have nothing but compassion for the young girl. I hope that you can truly understand that none of this was your fault, feel that compassion towards yourself, and you can start to forgive and love yourself. You are so strong. Keep your chin up! We are here for you if you need anything.

    Sending you love and strength,
    Bre

  16. Bluebell13 Volunteer

    Dear shelemyahu,
    Thank you for trusting us with your story. The way that you tell it and the determination that you show when you talk about making sure that the cycle stops with you demonstrates the person you are at your core. You were a child who experienced a traumatic event; this has a huge impact on your life. Being able understand that trauma, re-frame it with love and empathy for all parties involved, and work with a professional to heal it is huge! Being able to forgive yourself for how your child-self responded to that trauma is also important. Solongago gave some great advise about putting someone you know who is about the same age as you were at the time into the situation. How would you respond to that boy? What would you say to him? Now, say those things to 7 and 12 year-old you.
    Wishing you well in your healing work<3 Please feel free to come back and post here as often as you would like. You are not alone on this journey…our community is here for you.
    Sending you love and strength,
    Roxie

  17. music2799 Day Captain

    Hi shelemyahu,
    I’m really sorry about what you’ve been through. You didn’t deserve it, and it wasn’t your fault. Please don’t minimize what happened to you. There is no scale for sexual assault and this affected you, so it matters. You couldn’t have known right from wrong at that age, and I encourage you to extend the same compassion to yourself as you are extending to the girl. You deserve compassion, not hate.
    I’m glad you’re in regular therapy and that you’re so determined to stop the chain of abuse. I hope that therapy is helping you process these experiences in a healthy way. It makes sense that you’re feeling confused – your feelings are valid.
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. It takes courage to be so open about what you’re going through. We’re here to support you in any way we can, so please feel free to write back if you need anything. I’m confident that you can get through this.

  18. Marissa Day Captain

    Hi shelemyahu,

    Thanks for sharing your story with us. I have a lot of respect for the progress you’re making and how open you are being about what happened. I don’t hate you. You were a child that didn’t know right from wrong, and how could you? You were going off of your past experiences, which is a totally reasonable reaction. What matters is that you’re bettering yourself. Please let us know if you need anything! We’re here for you.

    Marissa

  19. musicislove

    Hi shelemyahu,

    Thank you for sharing your story here and I’m sorry for the trauma you went through when you were younger. You were so young when you went through everything you did, so it’s understandable that it was confusing. It’s great that you’re working with a therapist and I hope that it’s helping.

    Delaney

  20. Samantha Harris Volunteer

    Hi shelemyahu,
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I’m sorry for the abuse you experienced. I’m glad that you have been going to a counselor and that you are getting the help you need to heal. It seems like you and the girl had similar experiences, yet you sympathize with her while hating yourself. You deserve the same sympathy and understanding that you have towards the girl. I hope you are able to continue your path of healing. If you ever need anything, let us know. We’re always here for you.

    1. shelemyahu

      Ms. Harris,

      Thank you for your kind words. But, I really don’t think I could ever show myself even a quantum of sympathy. I understand that the source of all of this is things that happened in my youth, totally beyond my control. But they’ve had their detrimental effects. I tried my hardest to communicate this next fact without actually using the horrible word, but just so it’s clear; as much as I hate it, and whether it’s my fault or not, I am a pedophile. And I REFUSE to be the cause of further trauma in this world. My mind has a cancer that I don’t know if there is a cure for. The only thing I know to do is to stay in therapy, and always keep myself in check. Nothing less will do. I care too much for the safety of children to every waver on this. I care so much because I know how it feels, and I’ve seen the horrible effects of this cancer.

  21. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    Thank you for coming to share with us. I am so sorry for the abuse that you experienced-I’m glad you are in therapy and that you have that support. You deserve to heal. Everyone does.

    Erin

  22. Solongago Volunteer

    Hi shelemyahu,

    Thank you for sharing your story. It was very brave of you to do this. I know it is hard. I hear you blaming yourself a lot, and minimizing your own experience. It sounds like the last thing happened when you were just a young boy. I am sorry that happened. All of it. And I am glad you are getting help and working through what happened. You don’t have to hate the young girl. It sounds like you have compassion and understanding for her. Please give yourself the same compassion and understanding. Sometimes, it helps me to think of a child I know that is the same age I was when what happened to me happened, and I ask myself if I would blame this person if they did this. Sometimes it is helpful to see how young and how their minds work at that age, because I think we apply adult thinking to the actions we did in childhood. Please continue to work with your therapist and be open with your wife and anyone who is a good support person for you, and you can always come here and write about what is going on.