My abuser and injustice.

I think this has been brewing for a while. I’ve been having a lot of violent nightmares and I can’t place them, I’m having body memories, but cannot relate them to a particular memory. Last week I was dealing with a lot of irrational fears, I was angry at the way authorities had treated me and paranoid about the involvement of similar authorities now. Though the irrational fears are calmer and paranoia now gone, I’ve been left angry and with some trust issues. I wonder if that is behind the nightmares? Or perhaps it is due to an anniversary last week of an incident I actually reported to the Police right away.

Either way, I am feeling really angry, there’s so much injustice, my own and all around me..

Trigger Warning.

I was not the first to be abused by my abuser.He was well known to the Police for various violent crimes, he was also well known to them for his unhealthy interest in young teen girls. He had even been arrested on several occasions for suspected “sexual contact” with underage girls. He was never punished and their lack of action didn’t just physically allow him to re offend, it also gave him the confidence to do so. He was as aware as I am now, that the Police would not prosecute.

The Police spoke to me on more than one occasion, they warned me to stay away from him, but mostly, they told me off for getting involved. Wasn’t he the predator, just like they said? Why was I treated like the criminal, while he walked free, yet AGAIN?

In the years I knew him, he was arrested numerous times for sexual offences against teen girls. The Police had to know he was guilty, yet with every arrest, he was at most, cautioned and then released. Even after a harrowing video interview, where I had to disclose the details of a rape I had just endured, I was patted on the shoulder, ensured he’d be warned and then I was sent on my way.

I just cannot understand it, how many times can one person be arrested for similar crimes, yet still get away with it?

And how many are there of us? How many have been his victims, before, during and after me? I have spent a lot of time agonising over those potential victims since and those that may still be in danger. I know I cannot carry that, I know I cannot change it, because nothing would be done anyway. Even if I reported now, my experience time and time again has proven that he will not be prosecuted. But right or wrong I do still carry that. I am haunted by the idea that he abused others after me. I know I cannot do anything to bring him to justice, but if there’s something I can do to raise awareness of abuse and to help other abuse survivors then I have to do it.

I know I am not the only one feeling like I got the life sentence, desperately trying to deal with the aftermath and work towards healing from the crime an abuser got away with.

I’m so angry with him and various authorities right now. I am angry that even good moments are fleeting because of the PTSD, an issue I proabably wouldn’t have had he been caught and punished right away. Instead, I was left with no defence, I had no way out, no escape from abuse that then continued for years. I had to endure rape and torture, I was physically and emotionally abused. I had to live for years with lack of choice and only drugs, alcohol and an alternative reality to keep me sane. I was utterly abandoned by the only people who could keep him away from me. He should have been in prison, not free to abuse me.

I am angry about the abuse for sure, but it is the impact on my life now that makes me sick. I want to hold on to what I felt on Monday, when I was so grounded, I was excited for Christmas and for my future. I still feel like I have so little choice, because if I could choose, I would choose to feel as I did on Monday, I would grab it with both hands and never, ever let go. Yet PTSD and memories of abuse seem to rule my life, I do not get to choose when it strikes, only how I handle it. Because of failing of others, my life is affected now, I am tormented now, I am living with it now.

They (he and them) are the reason I have nightmares and flashbacks, they are the reason I lived the horrors of abuse. I blame them for difficulty to be close to others, my fear of the dark and of being alone. It is their fault it took me years to enjoy sex, that still I cry in my husband’s arms so often after. Their fault that I feel dirty and ashamed, that I feel worthless and unlovable and their fault that I struggle to find my Faith, that I feel anything but fear and anger towards God.

I blame them for my inability to feel anything for years. I blame them for my jumpiness at my own children’s touch. I blame them for my controlling nature and my need to always blame myself.

They crushed my self esteem, I lost my self worth, I was a shell for so very long. I blame them for my inability to ask for help even now. I blame them for my shame that I feel this way. I called Samaritans tonight (a UK helpline, who are fantastic btw) because I was feeling desperate yet too ashamed to call anyone I know and right now, I blame them for that too. Because I shouldn’t be here feeling this, I shouldn’t be ashamed of what I did not do, I should not be tormented by horrific memories, nor carrying responsibility for crimes I did not and would never commit. Not only did he abuse me, but they failed me spectacularly and right or wrong, I blame them and him for all of it right now.

I hate him and I hate them. Where is my justice?

PTSD sucks

I am so angry right now. This morning, yesterday too, I felt ok, calm, grounded. As I drove to work this morning, I realised how good it felt to be in the “here and now” I was, I was present and it was so exciting for me to feel it and know that this will (and I’m determined) be my reality one day.

I went to work, which was fine, until the Emergency lighting was tested. The corridors were dark with this sort of yellow light. As I walked through from my office along a corridor to reception I was hit by a Flashback. The lighting was too familiar, the dark corners, the door ways, the quiet. I felt sick. I managed to ground before I hit the floor.

So now I’m angry, PTSD trying to ruin my day, PTSD sucks, this sucks. I hate you PTSD and I hate him, oh how I hate him.

Enough, ENOUGH. I want to live here, now, not then.

 

Ok, now that’s off my chest (and it helped for sure) I’m going to swim as I had planned and turn this day back around.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

Self indulgent moan.

Well, I am supposed to be processing my therapy session I had last week. My boys are busy playing with their Aunt, but I’m struggling to relax enough. I managed to get started this morning in Church, but my time there was cut short by a screaming toddler who only wanted his Mummy.

The start is always the hardest part, but now I find myself procrastinating. The fact is I don’t want to process it at all.  My therapy session was hell, I left with feelings of insecurity, to the point that I had to contact my T for some reassurance that what I shared with him,  hadn’t driven him away. I shared some horrible things, awful, make my skin crawl, sickening, vile details. I hate it. I hate this, I hate having to disclose in such detail. But, there’s so many feelings stuck in the details. In previous experience bringing out what I went through, in the safety of my therapy sessions, helps me to feel those things and work through the many issues involved. I just hate it, feeling so vulnerable and exposed, having to say things out loud that I am deeply ashamed of. Yuck.

We are dealing with some of that shame right now, the details remain in the way of getting past those feelings. Improvements were made on Friday, I know something changed/ clicked/ felt different. We work with a lot of imagery in our sessions, I find it very useful, I describe in detail what I see and we observe how this changes along the way. The imagery on Friday changed, but right at the end of the session, so it’s not something I worked through with him. I think it could wait until our next session, but as that’s almost two weeks away, I’d like to do some myself. I’m aware that there’s been a change and I want to explore how I feel, yet when I sit down to try to do just that, I find my mind wandering and I find myself looking for something to distract me. I’ve started, but right now cannot continue. I’m afraid to go back there, I suppose. I can hear my T telling me to contain the details and deal with the feelings. What if I cannot do that? I don’t want to be back in those details, not alone.

Ugh, in general I feel like hell, we have more guests arriving today (one arrived last week), I have a week off work, the boys are at home, it’s all stuff that isn’t normal, it’s not part of routine and I’m finding it difficult. Even the weather is bothering me, we don’t get a whole lot of hot, sunny weather, but right now we are having a mini heatwave- even that change seems too much for me right now. I feel stressed out, I am fighting to stay in control, I keep dissociating, I’ve been shaky all morning and it won’t go away. I miss my husband, I don’t seem to have seen a whole lot of him the last few days, yet he’s been around lots. It’s strange how there have been so many people around me, yet I have felt kinda alone.

Grumpy, sad, afraid, I can almost hear the violins playing..

Imprisoned memories

 

Locked in a padded room

bouncing off the sides

looking for their exit,

desperate to escape

 

They make their impression

before trampolining away.

And though the mark fades

it always leaves a trace

 

The return is inevitable

a reality that does not cease

for they are imprisioned here

until our sentence is complete

 

So repeatedly they hit

ricocheting off the sides

We await their release

with fear and bated breath

 

for one day it will be over.

With freedom granted

no more will they rebound

and no longer fade away

 

Me Versus Me

(To remain anonymous I have used a fake name)

I am neither, but I am both. I am one, yet also another.

Becca became dominant during the abuse, she protected me. With her began the pretense that dominated my life for the next 14(ish) years. She told me I was fine, she told others, I was fine, she protected me from the ugly truth. She was necessary, she was needed. I would not have survived without her.

She would not allow me to feel, or remember the abuse in my every day life. She stomped on any of the bad feelings, told them to be gone, she was in control in almost all areas of my life. I loved her, I loved that she had taken over, she got me through and she was the person I wanted to be.

The problem is, there was another me, Rebecca, the me who had been abused, the me who was present during it, the me who remembered, the me who was desperate to be heard. Becca and Rebecca argued a lot, Becca called Rebecca a liar, told her she was exaggerating what had happened, she called her an attention seeker, she told her she should be ashamed and embarrassed, she silenced her whenever she could.

Rebecca was still there though, she remained in the background, displaying signs of PTSD (more on that later). Becca didn’t like that at all, all aspects of Becca- her social, organised character, her need for noise, and if that didn’t work (particularly in the teen years) her use of drink and drugs-were there to drown out Rebecca.

Rebecca had time at the fore, she was the one who spent many nights awake, talking online to the man, who would become our best friend. Though the husband caught many glimpses, our “besty” was the only one who truly saw Rebecca. In those long chats, she told the truth of what was done to us, what we endured. In those times, she could be free.

A year ago– and I don’t even know why, it finally seemed the right time for Rebecca to be heard. I began therapy, my T was aware right away of the presence of both Rebecca and Becca. I explained the pretense Becca had formed, we confronted that, we tore down those walls she had created and slowly we finally gave Rebecca a voice.

At first my T saw only Becca, but as the trust deepened, Rebecca started to come forward more and more. Since then my T has suggested that both Rebecca and Becca are me aged 14. He has said, he’s noted that Rebecca and Becca have slowly started to integrate. Their memories of the past  are no longer so separate. He has explained that neither is false, both are me, both sets of memories are true, just from a different perspective. Slowly, I’ve started to see the real me, the grown woman me, emerging from the two. I still feel Rebecca and Becca. I feel Becca still trying to protect me, it’s so natural for me to allow her in, that sometimes I have to argue with her to get her to allow me to feel. Rebecca, I’ve grown to love and I’m starting to accept her for the hurt and broken child she is, I strive to allow both to truly be part of me, while also not allowing them to completely dominant my life now.

I am neither, but I am both. I am one, yet also another.