Battle

 

The monster in the shadows, is one I’ve known for years.

Lurking in my memories, he infiltrates my dreams.

And I cannot shake him, he still lives and he breathes

in the lasting darkness within me where my fears have not ceased.

I know of what he is capable, I don’t know how to rid myself of him

I am not sure that I am able, or that he will ever leave.

 

Now I am reuniting them both, together they will be one.

And already the darkness has company; my monster and my love.

Working together, they prepare for combat,

their reign of terror over me and I’m not ready for that attack.

Now I am facing both, surely, I do not have a chance?

 

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Angry, hurt and ashamed.

Trigger warning.

 

I put aside this time to write a little in my journal to prepare for my therapy session tomorrow. My husband is out buying food for a Thanksgiving meal (we will be having a day late) and my children are asleep. I can’t bring myself to open my journal again though. I wrote a lot in it early this morning and after wrestling with myself, I posted one (“Ashamed”). I just can’t seem to go back in that journal right now.

I am feeling pretty bad, but that seems to be the norm at the moment. I’ve been dissociating a lot today and right now I am just full of anger. I’m angry that I’m so ashamed of myself, I’m angry that “he” made me feel that way. I’m angry that I have to feel any of this stuff, I am angry that it was done to me in the first place. I’m so angry. I really, really hate that I was a victim of that abuse, which I am sure is quite a normal feeling. I hate that people know.. yet it’s a relief at the same time. It gets so tiring hiding it, but the point is, I’m angry that anyone has to know. I’m angry that “he” did it, I am angry that talking about it is the only way through.

Sometimes I feel so vulnerable and exposed. I am so private, maybe because of the abuse, or perhaps it’s just who I am.. and so while I’m glad it’s out in the open, it makes me uncomfortable. I was groomed into keeping quiet out of shame. I believed what I was doing (being made to do) was wrong and dirty and that it needed to remain a secret. I believed no one would love me, or could ever love me if they knew the truth. Those feelings have come with me into adulthood and they remain now.

Each time I tell what he did, I am rewarded with a high of taking control, but I’m also fighting shame and that voice telling me I need to stop. Telling helps, but I am so very ashamed of what “he” did- I cannot help it. I was raped and in love with my rapist and that causes a huge amount of shame. I had to take part in vile and lewd acts, I had to say awful things and pretend it was real for me. I won’t go into detail, it’s not what this blog is about, but it was truly sick. I cannot help the shame.

I do know he groomed me to love him and I know he was at fault. I know it’s not my fault, I know the shame belongs to him. I also fully believe that victims of rape have nothing at all to be ashamed of, yet that shame remains.

This is really hard.

 

Causes of Rape.

A little rant for a Sunday evening.

What is it with society thinking women in short skirts/dresses are “asking for it”? It’s a rape myth. I think people hold on to that (ridiculous) idea because it’s easier to victim blame than to admit the truth. The truth being that more rapes occur in the victims own home, perpetrated by someone they know, than by strangers in an alley way. Stranger rape is a lot rarer than a lot of people seem to realise.

It is absurd, it really is. I hear and read so often, that somehow the victim’s clothes are a factor in rape. This suggests rape is about sex , it suggests men cannot control their sexual urges (which frankly, is offensive to all the decent men out there). It suggests that by wearing a short skirt, the female is indicating she is sexually available. Clothes have nothing to do with consent and rape is not about sex. Rape is about power, rape is about control, it is about dominance, it is about humiliation, rape is a way to feed the rapists ego.. etc etc. I was not forced to have sex, I was not forced to perform sex acts. I was raped.

I wore short skirts sometimes, dresses occasionally but mostly I wore jeans or combat trousers or school uniform trousers or jogging trousers, or at times long skirts. What I and every other rape victim wore is irrelevant. It didn’t matter whether I was in a short skirt or in jeans, the rapes took place anyway. My clothes did not mean I was asking for it, my behaviour did not mean I was asking for it. I was raped because I was in the presence of a rapist.

Rape has nothing to do with the victim’s behaviour or dress, nothing at all. The only cause of rape is the rapist. It is as simple as that.

Yours

You said we’d run away

Just her and him

and me and you

together, we’d be the same.

And I wanted that

a promise to love me

to take care of us

to never hurt me again.

I believed you for way too long

until I could no longer bear the strain.

And it was that point

when I realised, I never had a say

I knew it would forever be pain.

It was always you and only you

who could choose the way.

I was and had been under your spell

and there was a price to pay.

Yet, you knew I would never tell

I had almost embraced my fate

until one torturous night and day

battered and broken

used and terrorised

you finally walked away.

I hoped and prayed

that is where you would stay.

Naive perhaps, stupid even

‘cos yours you told me,

forever of course,

and that’s how it would remain.

Yours, I was over and over

time and time again.

I know now (another letter to him).

I’ve been looking for release for days and this evening I found it in another letter to my abuser.  I shed a few.. not enough, but a few tears and I feel somewhat lighter and stronger too. 

Big trigger warning, I am sure it will not be easy reading for family. Please be careful.

I remember the day we met, I remember what you said. Do those words echo in your head the way they do in mine? Or am I one of so many that you just don’t remember the details? I know I wasn’t the first and I know I wasn’t the last, I know that I was just another notch, another number, another name to add to the list. 

That day we met, you had already decided what you were going to do, you picked me, you singled me out. You saw my vulnerability, my innocence, my naivety. You played on it but you took your time, you found all my weaknesses. You began the grooming process. You lied to me from the moment we met, your age, where you were from, where you lived, your family, your girlfriend, everything. Every single thing. You were tripping yourself up in lies but I was so keen to believe you, I wanted the idea, I wanted it to be true. I wanted you to love me and I wanted to love you too. It was like some amazing love story, separated by age and social barriers and love would win in the end. It was one you told me over and over again. When people opposed us, it became part of that story, it was just like you told it, they would try to keep us apart because they didn’t understand.  I fell for it, I fell for the idea, I fell for your lies, you did so well, you got me right where you wanted me to be, utterly head over heels.

And then it began.. not a relationship, not some wonderful love story. No, you began to hurt me, you took away my innocence, you took away my smile. I wanted out so badly, but I couldn’t find a way. As I looked for the door all I could see were you walls, barriers built high that I couldn’t seem to cross. You were so well rehearsed, you knew what to do, you knew to change tactics just at the right moment. Just as I was about to find that way out you changed the rules of your game. 

You bought me flowers, you bought me earrings, you cooked me dinner, you kissed me gently and held my hand as you walked me home. You were with me every step it seemed, as the world turned its back on me, you were right there arms wide open. Except you were the reason I needed to escape. You were the one who put me in that position. You made me think you were my saviour, you made me feels as if you were the only one who cared. You twisted everything, you undid all my beliefs, you shattered my faith. 

It slowly got worse, you pushed and pushed, and it felt as if the world was closing in around us. It felt like it was just you and me drowning in our sin and alone in our shameful actions. You were all I had so I clung on tight. I was so afraid every day, I wanted to feel safety and as fucked up as it  sounds, I felt safe with you. You made the world seem such a dark and scary place, so much worse than you. Compared to what you threatened, your actions seemed safe. Yet, until I met you I was protected, my world was entirely safe. You introduced me to pain, you showed me a world that was full of hurt and hate. With you I learned what it was to feel ashamed, you trained me, you pulled me so deep down into your darkness that I gave up all hope. I was in the pits of despair, I submitted to you as I resigned myself to my fate, a lifetime of torment as your girl.

You used me over and over and over again, you tortured me, making me feel depths of physical pain that I didn’t know existed. You laughed as I cried, you stood over me yelling when I didn’t do it right. You punched a hole in the wall next to my head when I asked for a break. You kicked off a door in anger as I wondered what I had done. The whole time I blamed myself, scolded myself for angering you, not once did I question why you were doing this to me. I accepted it. See how much you had ground me down? I believed I deserved your actions. I searched within myself looking for an answer, some kind of reason for why you would hurt me. Though I knew what you did was wrong, I thought the blame was mine. And for years I have carried it, the blame and the shame and the belief that you must have loved me. I guess the reality was too much for me to handle, it was easier to believe your lies. 

But last week I was finally strong enough and the truth became clear. The reality is barely tolerable but it is my only way to freedom. I know I am getting closer I feel it waiting for me, a place where your lies will no longer hold me. 

Though I am astounded at the reality, I am lighter with this clarity and with the knowledge of what you are. I know you never loved me, I know you didn’t even care. As I type this I am saying it in my head and it is clear:

 You groomed me, you raped me and you abused me.

 I see you now, I know what you are and I know what you did.

I choose light.

I feared we were the same

A mirror image of each other

Shame Vs Shame

Pain Vs Pain

 

But when I met you I was happy

I was innocent

You were so badly broken

So far gone.

 

Beaten and abused

twisted into a mere thing

a hard shell

tormented inside.

 

And you did it to me

twisted my thoughts

used and abused me

until I felt like you.

 

But it isn’t that way,

we were nothing alike

even back then,

I found a way through

 

Look at me now,

I may be tormented

and I hurt like hell,

But I am moving forward.

 

We chose different paths

you and I.

You chose darkness

and I will always choose light.