Writing my story of abuse for the first time…

Writing my story of abuse for the first time…

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I’ve always found it difficult to articulate anything about my abuse.

Every time I’ve tried to write something down or let someone know my brain fogs up and I become so overwhelmed that I end up avoiding it.

I think for a long time I had Capital D denial.

If I never talked about it, or thought about it then maybe it never existed in the first place?

My memories are so fragmented from my childhood that sometimes I can truely convince myself that they can’t be real.

But recently more and more bits and pieces have been coming back to me. The house I was abused in was put up for sale and by chance the real estate listing popped up on my Facebook feed. 

I knew it wouldn’t be good for me to open it but I felt like I had to.

I flicked through the pictures and I was overwhelmed with so many feelings that I thought I might vomit.

From 10 to 12 I was molested by my mums ex boyfriend.

He threatened me that if I told anyone he would kill my mother and it would be all my fault.

He was a very violent abusive man so I believed him.

At the time I was being severely bullied at school and I had started self harming. It disgusted him and he used that against me too. Saying he would tell my mum and she would be so disappointed in me if I didn’t keep our secrets.

He would buy me presents if I was a “good girl“. A fender guitar when I took up music, a puppy our family hadn’t spoken about getting, I got to pick the puppy’s name, the colour of his Ute, the colour we redid the carpet when we renovated. He painted my room bubble gum purple because it was a colour I loved (Now every time I see something that colour I want to throw up). All these things made me feel special. He had control of everything in our household, but In some small way I felt I did too.

My feelings were so confusing. I was simultaneously afraid of him and in admiration of him. 

The abuse finally stopped when my mum was able to obtain a restraining order after he physically attacked her. Unfortunately he contested this in court and the restraining order was lifted. Her breakup did not go over well and he demanded half of everything she owned. 

My mum is the sweetest kindest lady I know, but she is deathly afraid of the courthouse and it all become too stressful for her to continue fighting. In the end she paid him off to have the restraining order reinstated. 

The stress of the whole relationship and legal battle severely messed with her mental and physical health. She was highly suicidal and ended up having a stroke when I was 15. She couldn’t walk, talk or remember who I was. It was a very difficult time but I am happy to say that she has now recovered a lot of her abilities although there will always be remaining effects of the stroke.

I never told anyone, even after he was out of my life. I thought it would be too much for my mum to handle so I just tucked it away in the depths of my mind and went on with my life.

When I was 17 I became very depressed and suicidal. I moved away for university with my boyfriend and one night when I was very drunk I told him. I didn’t mean to, it just slipped out. We didn’t talk further about it but a week later I had a concerning call from my mum. He had told her what I said because he was worried about my safety. Even though I know what he did came from a caring place I was so angry.

It wasn’t his story to share and I felt like my life was completely out of control. I wasn’t ready to deal with the trauma, I wasn’t ready to admit it happened. I ended up dropping out of uni and spent 6 months in a psychiatric unit. My mum assumed I had worked through it when I was there but I refused to talk about it.

It’s been 5 years since then and I am only now feeling more open to working through it.

I’m so nervous and I desperately crave a sense of community. Where I live there are no support groups for this kind of thing and I have felt so lonely this past year.

I think finally sharing part of my story on here is the first step of many in my healing journey. I am nervous and afraid of the feelings yet to come but I don’t want him to have control over my life anymore. He has done too much damage and I’m ready to take my life back.

So thanks for letting me ramble…


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17 comments

  1. eagle206 Volunteer

    Hi lonelyandempty,

    Thank you for coming here to share your story. AVFTI is a safe space. We are all here for you to help in any way that we can. I’m so sorry to hear about what your mum’s ex-boyfriend did to you when you are longer. Remember, that none of what happened is your fault. I’m sorry to hear that your boyfriend told your mum about things. It’s hard because I’m sure he meant well and wanted to help you, but it’s important that this is your story to tell and only you get to choose who hears it. We are a community here and we are all here to help you work through things. You are going to take back your life, and we are here to help.

    Stay strong,

    Tyler

  2. Ashley Day Captain

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

    Your mom’s ex-boyfriend had no right to threaten you; I wish he wouldn’t have placed you in a position where he used threats to keep you from coming forward. Since there were moments when he made you feel special, it’s not abnormal that you felt admiration towards him. I’m sorry that he went out of his way to contest the restraining order and that his actions began to affect your mom’s health.

    It’s never too late for you to work on taking your life back. I hope we can ease some of the loneliness you have been feeling.

    Ashley

  3. Bluebell13 Volunteer

    Dear Lonelyandempty,
    Thank you for trusting us with your story. It took a lot of courage to put it down in writing for other to read and respond to. I am so sorry that this happened to you and that it is still affecting your life. He was an awful and abusive man and knew exactly what he was doing by using threats and gifts to confuse and manipulate you. It wasn’t your fault and the conflicting feelings you had about him are quite normal in abusive situations. I hope that sharing your story here and receiving support and validation help you on your healing journey. Our Find Help tab has a variety of resources that you may find useful. It sounds like you are not in the US so the community resources and the hotlines may not be of any use to you; however, RAINN is an international organization the is specifically for those who have been affected by sexual assault/abuse and they may be able to guide to resources in your area. Their website is http://www.rainn.org and they have a webchat if you need someone to talk to. Please feel free to post to us as often as you would like, we are here for you.
    Sending you love and strength,
    Roxie

  4. Lonelyandempty

    Thank you so much for all your kind comments.
    It’s nice to talk to people who understand.
    I have been in therapy before but I am looking into therapists in my area who specialise in childhood sexual abuse at the moment.
    I’m in a DBT group at the moment to learn some skills for when I do decide to face the trauma.
    Really lovely to meet you all x

  5. Kayla Volunteer

    Thank you so much for coming to us with your story. This is a safe place and we are here to listen and support you however we can. I am so sorry for everything you and your mum have been through. It sounds like you went through really though times, and yet you preserved and are here with us today, sharing your story and taking the path of healing. You are very strong for sharing with us, it’s hard to hold all of this in yet it’s hard to release it to. I hope you find sharing helpful and please know that we are here for you every step of the way. Sending love.

  6. dzreid Volunteer

    Lonelyandempty,
    I want to begin by saying I am so glad that you found our site! You’re feelings matter & are real. You matter! I am so sorry that you had to live your life in silence! Breaking the silence & sharing isn’t an easy task, but you have done it! Be proud. Yes, sharing our stories is never easy & healing takes time & patience. You have found a community on here! You’re not alone any longer. Have you thought about finding a therapist to help you further. Come & share with us anytime. There is also a crisis line through AVFTI. text the crisis line to voice 741741
    Dawn

  7. Shannon Volunteer

    Hey Lonelyandempty,

    Thank you for sharing with us. I am sorry for what you have been through, it was not your fault and you did not deserve it. we hope you come back to update us with how you are doing. Be kind to yourself

    Shannon

  8. Amysue43 Volunteer

    I’m glad you found our page and can open the door of possibilities and recovery in your first step with us. I’m sorry to hear all that has happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of that and it was definitely not your fault. It can definitely be frustrating to find out that your story had been shared through someone else rather than yourself; however, it speaks a lot of you to say that you knew it was coming from a good place in his heart. Perhaps sharing that with him can encourage him to talk with you about it to prevent something of that matter happening again.
    I’m glad you and your family are safe now and have made accommodations to better your lifestyle. Your feelings in terms of starting recovery are definitely normal and expected. The process isn’t easy as it included hard work on your part. Basically, “you get what you put into it” and I would encourage you to start journaling to take another step in your recovery. The journal entries could help you in “downloading” the weight all this may have on you onto something else. It could also help organize your thoughts on the situation of recovery as well.
    I hope these comments are reassuring and comforting to you. We are here for you.

    Stay strong <3

  9. Megan Volunteer

    Hey lonelyandempty,

    I’m so sorry that this happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of it. You have been through so much in your life and you have still come out so strong and I am incredibly proud of you for that. Everyone works through trauma on their own time; and they should work through it when they feel it’s right for them. I am proud of you for feeling more open to working through it. I think that’s a really good idea to start working through it with a therapist. I’m sorry you don’t have any support groups in your area. We can be sort of your online support group though if you like? We are always here for you and will support you through whatever you are going through.

    Wishing you all the best. You are strong and you will get through this. I believe in you,
    Megan

  10. Lizzi

    Lonelyandempty,
    I’m so sorry for what happened to you. It was wrong of him to abuse you like that and it was not your fault. It sounds like he tried to do nice things to cover up for all the horrible wrong things he was doing to you. It’s understandable that some of those things still trigger upsetting thoughts and memories today. I’m also sorry that your mom was told about the abuse before you were ready to tell her. That was your story to tell, not someone elses. I’m so proud of you for sharing this with us and trusting us with your story. It’s a huge step to be willing to talk about it, and I’m sorry that you’re feeling lonely and lacking support around you. Know that we’re always here for you and we believe you. Have you found a counselor that you can work through this with? Now that you’re ready to work through it, I believe it would be so helpful in you taking your life back. If you need more support, our Find Help tab has a lot of good resources.

  11. Alyssa Day Captain

    Hi Lonelyandempty,
    I’m so sorry this happened. You didn’t deserve this. I’m happy that you are getting help now. You are so brave for telling your story here. We are always here for you. Recovery takes time, but you are off to a great start. Having your mom and boyfriend help you is great. You have good support system. It’s okay if you didn’t want to talk about it back then because you can tell your story whenever you are ready and comfortable. Thank you for trusting and sharing your story with AVFTI. Continue to stay strong.
    -Alyssa

  12. Northlane1991 Volunteer

    I think it is amazing you are sharing your story with us on here. Sharing something is an important step toward healing my friend. I hope you are able to stay strong and feel free to reach out to anyone here if you need to talk confidentially.

  13. colton95 Volunteer

    I think it’s awesome that you are being brave by sharing your story on here. The fact that you’re willing to share your story is a great step towards healing! I hope that you will be able to stay strong and feel free to reach out to anyone here if you need to talk confidentially.

  14. Kailey2298 Volunteer

    Hi Lonelyandempty,
    I’m happy you trust us to share your story! I know how hard it is to share and talk about what happened. Nothing that happened is in anyway your fault and its important to know that. I’m sorry you had to go through all of this and at such a young age. Him buying you gifts and trying to manipulate you is so confusing and hard to grasp at such a young age. Also, I’m sorry to hear about what happened to your mom I’m glad shes doing better now. I’m glad your ready to start the road to recover! It is hard to talk about and think about but just know your not alone and we are all hear for you! Have you thought about therapy? Its honestly a great way to talk and work through what happened. You are so strong and if we can help in any way please let us know!
    Kailey

  15. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am so sorry for everything that you experienced-you didn’t deserve it, and it wasn’t your fault. Have you ever thought about seeing a therapist? That could be helpful in addition to sharing here. Let us know how else we can help you-we are here for you.

    Erin

  16. rkr18 Volunteer

    Hello Lonelyandempty,

    I am so proud of you for having the courage to share your story. What happened to you was not your fault and you did not deserve it. I do understand, from my own experience, how difficult it must have been to have someone else share your experiences especially when you are not ready to handle the trauma and emotions that go with it. Thank you for making this your first step, please know we are here for you. We also have resources available on our site if you need them. Please continue to update us and if you need anything don’t hesitate to ask.
    -Marie

  17. music2799 Day Captain

    Hi Lonelyandempty,
    I’m really sorry about what you’ve been through. What he did was so wrong, and it wasn’t your fault. It’s terrible that he used your secrets against you, yet bought you things – maybe to keep you quiet. It makes sense that you had conflicting feelings about him. I’m also sorry about what your mom endured to get away from him. I’m glad that she’s doing better now and that she’s away from him.
    I understand how you feel about your boyfriend telling your mom about what happened. Even though he was concerned, this is your story to tell. You can decide who to talk to about this.
    It also makes sense that you’re nervous about what may come up. It’s understandable that you’re overwhelmed when you try to talk about it – it may be your brain protecting you. Talking about this in a safe space can help us heal because it provides us with validation, care, and support. It’s not easy to talk about these things, so take this at your own pace. There are some resources under the Find Help tab, such as hotlines, counseling, etc. It might also be helpful to talk to a therapist in order to process how you feel.
    I’m glad that you want to take your life back and start healing. Thank you for trusting us with your story – you are strong and brave. Please feel free to write back if you need anything. We’re here to support you, and welcome to the community.