Selfish. Shame.

 

Such hate filled me yesterday and that is not me. I am entitled to feel angry, I know that well, but it isn’t me, it isn’t who I am, or who I want to be. It doesn’t end with hate, it cannot be the way through this. I love, it is what I do and what I want to do. I put others before me- I worry endlessly about being selfish.. am I selfish? I love where it isn’t reciprocated, I take the hurt, to protect others. I have sacrificed myself for others, at great cost to myself.. why do I fear I am selfish?

Today, this week.. for the last 15 yrs…I am suffering because of a sacrifice I made. I am deeply ashamed of what I had to do in order to save someone else. I don’t regret that I put her first, I’d do it again if it were the only way..but I hate the way in which I had to do it.

I wasn’t selfish then, I wasn’t capable of that because I knew I didn’t matter. I learned that soon after it began. The one who loved me most and I her too, I’d have died for her that day and in a way I guess I did. And since a thousand deaths I swear, carrying the secrets of how I got us through.

I felt it on Wednesday, on the anniversary of that day, the pain searing through my body, trying to make me face the reality of that day and what I had to do. As I fought that truth, the pain only worsened, filling me with rage, until I could contain it no longer.

And now the dark secret is coming into the light and that deep shame, working it’s way through me- hopefully on it’s way out. I cannot think of anyone but myself. It’s a viscous cycle, I am ashamed that I am ashamed. I am ashamed that I am thinking of myself before her. Before anyone. It was her hell, hers and she deserves to be held and loved, and comforted. Protected and kept safe. Hers. Not mine. I cannot claim it as mine too.. but oh this shame, this pain. The horror.

How do I learn to take care of myself without the guilt? How do I put myself first without hating myself for selfishness? Am I selfish? God, if you only knew the things I did, would you even care..

I long for the morning now, for the life and energy of my children. I long for the light, for the comfort that night will never bring.

 

Pain and shame.

A long and painful month. 31 days and we are at the end. Is this really the end? I fear it is only the beginning. I am only just learning to sit with feelings. I am only just beginning to feel the agony and rage. I am out of my depth and overwhelmed by things I have never experienced.

First day back in therapy today and it was intense. I was practically bursting when I got there, a secret that has been killing me. After the anniversary and body memories this week, it was time to tell. Except, I can’t switch off and just tell like I used to – telling as if it happened to someone else. That responsibility and that shame, choking each and every word so they could barely escape.

It took some time, but I told. Some. What I could. Then we sat, in silence. Feeling. Hurting. Fighting the shame. And then an intense and deeply touching “it wasn’t your fault” from my T and I had to leave. Leave because it hurt too much, leave before the crying started. Tears I feared would spill so ferociously, with such force that they’d drown me in seconds.

 

And now I am left with pain and with shame. What I did- if you knew, would you hate me? Judge me? I justified myself over and over today- for me, I guess. The things you have to do in that situation- to get out of it and especially, to save someone else….such loathing for those actions, for what I did. I know I have to work on transferring that to the one who is really responsible. I know my T is right, I know deep down it wasn’t my fault.. I just wish the rest of me would listen and I wish I’d pushed through the agony this afternoon and stuck around for more of his reassurance.

Anger.

I am so angry, so fucking angry. Every time I think I get it under control, it is there again. Everything is winding me up, even the children. Things I would normally find mildly irritating, have me incandescent with rage. A red mist I cannot see through, a grip on my chest, so tight I can barely breathe.

I hurt, all over, I am overwhelmed by memories. I want it all to go, to fucking leave me alone. Maybe it’s the anniversaries, the toll of this month, or the knowledge that I have therapy tomorrow- where I know it will all come out. I don’t know, but I want to hit something, or break something.. do something.

I HATE them, I HATE him, I HATE every single person who caused this- and it wasn’t just one. So many people did nothing, so many turned a blind eye, so many who just didn’t fucking care, because they couldn’t and probably still can’t see past themselves. I hope I am never that selfish, I never, ever want to be like them.

Perhaps they think I didn’t matter, just a teen girl- I should have expected it right? WRONG.  I wish I could say that it has changed since then, I wish what I went through was an isolated case, not an epidemic, which it seems to be. We live in a close minded, selfish, judgmental society. The media have a lot to answer for. The BBC continue to report on cases of child abuse, using the phrase “Child Sex Abuse”

STOP CALLING IT SEX ABUSE

It has nothing to do with sex. All those people who failed me… they told themselves I was off the rails, they told themselves I’d fallen for an older man and then they shamed me for “sleeping” with him. I didn’t! What he did was abuse. It was rape. It was not sex. For goodness sake, when will these attitudes change? I can’t do this, I can’t live with this. I cannot live in a world so fucked up it blames victims of abuse and rape. Where’s the exit? Because I wanna leave until this changes.

It’s too hard, too painful and it is feeding the shame I am desperately trying to rid myself of. It leaves me carrying secrets that are too heavy for one person to bear. It leaves me terrified to share with those who are supposed to care. I cannot report, I cannot tell people, I cannot seek justice. I will be looking over my shoulder for the rest of my life (or at least his), unable to return to my home town, always being careful who knows where I live. Paranoid and terrified. His fault, their fault. Not my fault.

And it’s not just me, every other survivor I have crossed paths with has similar to say. The victim of Ched Evans for example, she had to change her name, she had to leave her home town, she will have to suffer for the rest of her life. He has been convicted of rape, yet still people think he’s innocent. How is this OK? She has her rapist convicted and still she is blamed. What hope is there for the rest of us?

We are living in a mans world and I am fucking sick of it.

 

 

 

I hate feeling this out of control, it triggers me, it feels so unlike me. I see “him” when I feel angry, what he looked like when angry and it just makes things worse…

 

 

 

Anniversary-again.

Thank you for the support following my last post, it’s good to know I am not alone.

I hate this month, it’s been worse than ever this year. I have barely had time to recover from the last anniversary when I have another to face.

I’ve denied it every year, I’ve pretended that I didn’t know the date, is that weird? That anniversary I posted about on Sunday, well the “official” date is today. Anniversaries can feel like days, with all the stuff that took place before and after and on certain days of the week etc.. but today is the date it took place- and I’ve never admitted that before. I suppose I didn’t want to admit it to myself, I didn’t want to face it. Another date on my calendar, another one to go through each year. It’s too much- isn’t it? How is one person supposed to handle this?

The anniversary on Monday, I prepared- I took the day off work even. Today, I will work, today I will take care of children, today I will just have to distract as always. This is too raw. I couldn’t possibly prepare for this date, when I’ve been denying it to myself.

My body knew, I woke with body memories, just like it was happening again. I feel used and abused.

I am triggered, I am hurting, I am weary. Drained from a month of anniversaries, of memories and for the first year- pain.

 

This is rambly, I am not sure I am even making sense.

 

Do you ever just want to shout it out, or go public in some way? Tell everyone who thinks they know you that actually, they have no clue. Do you ever wish that they knew?

I do. I get tired of the secrets and lies.

It isn’t my fault that I cannot. I am not afraid of being open, I am not afraid of others knowing. Instead it’s the lack of control once it’s out there. What they will think and what they will say, what would they do? From bitter experience I know that it won’t be what I want or need.

A little while ago, someone commented on my blog, supporting my need to be open, encouraging me to just say it, to tell everyone. This person shared the positive experience she had from doing that. I was glad for her and heartbroken at the same time. I do not share her positive experience. I found myself wondering if it was my fault or those I knew?

Perhaps I need to surround myself with the people who do care, truly care. Those, who when the shit hits the fan, are there, to help me clean up the mess. I can’t name many people who would do that for me. I could post on Facebook now, share the horror of what this day was for me 14 years ago, but that would only serve to make me suffer more. How many would care? How many would simply scroll down, so they can look away?

It’s on anniversaries when you remember the loneliness. Even when you are with friends, you can still be utterly alone. Alone to be hurt in the worst possible way. Surrounded on every side by a pack of animals, yet utterly alone. Discarded like a toy, bruised and bleeding, to then be deserted by everyone who once claimed to care. Just like before. Left to mop up the blood and to bandage the wounds alone. As always. Ridiculed and blamed by those you called friends. Once again.

Why did no one care? What did I do to be hated so much?

And this is why I cannot tell them and this is why I have always been strong.  If I am not strong for myself, who would do it for me?

I write this with my boy snuggled into me, my baby sleeping upstairs and my amazing husband cooking my favourite food. Today, my Minister came over to be with me on this difficult day. I am not alone, not like before. I’ve been strong for so long, perhaps, tonight I don’t need to be strong. Just for tonight- now I am not alone, maybe I can cry now. Can I cry now?? Just for now. Because I can barely hold back the tears.

 

 

 

 

Our Anniversary.

An anniversary, I think. I feel it in my heart. As my husband pulled me into his arms this morning, my thoughts turned to my friend. I wondered if she felt it too. Did her husband pull her close this morning, did she find comfort in his arms?

 

Walls of guilt held back the hurt for years. but now they have moved and are changed, my agony is free to flow in rivers. Rivers of fiery pain. Where guilt has left, I am still filled with regret at what she had to endure.

We share the anniversary and like every year before, I wish she hadn’t had to suffer the same fate as me. I wish I could have done more, I wish it had been different. I wish we had both been safe.

 

I remain haunted by the way she looked that day, her shock, her fear, her pain. How must she be feeling right now?

I pray for my friend today.