Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay
Do you know how long it took me to write that? Or even worse, knowing that I am going to leave that there and someone else can read it? Even now, as I carry on typing, I think, can I really go ahead and click publish in this?
People are going to hate me. Those who know me are going to think what a terrible person I am. They?ll know ? they?ll know what I?ve always known inside about myself. I am awful.
It would be logical to wonder why I would write this when it is so damn hard and shameful, but truth be told, I want to write it for someone else. I want to write it for anyone who is the same as me.
I can?t tell you how many times I have googled the phrase, ?I enjoyed my sexual abuse.? It?s been this compulsive need for years for me to find someone like me, for me to find some kind of validation and know that I am not sick, that there is not something inherently wrong with me.
I tried searching for it even yesterday. I look so hard for something to take this burden of shame off me and to show me what I feel ? what I felt, was and is normal. The most I have found is along the lines of forced pleasure, and children?s bodies naturally reacting to becoming aroused. But there is nothing to say about when a child goes back over and over again.
Looking For Affection
I know some would tell me I did this because it was the only form of affection I could get and that children crave the love of their parents all the time, and this was just my way of getting it. But I want to shake my head. I want to say those people are wrong. No. There was something in it that I liked, and yeah, I might have been six and seven and upwards, but I did go back. Time and time again, I went willingly.
Wanting it to Stop
When I was ten-years-old, I went to a call box and dialled ChildLine. I am not sure if it still exists or not. But back then it was a free helpline for children to call if they needed help in any way. Well, I went to a callbox and dialled their number. By then, I was six years into my sexual abuse. I dialled the number, but when the woman answered, I hung up. I tried again, only staring for ages at the phone, trying to breathe, feeling overwhelmed, feeling like a liar.
What was I supposed to say? That my father was sexually abusing me? He wasn?t, though. It was a lie.
I Didn?t Want to Lie
Yes, I had a sexual relationship with my dad, but it wasn?t forced. I wasn?t beaten into it every night. There wasn?t these sneaky late-night visits and whispers of my mother being attacked if I didn?t comply. No. There was none of that.
All those images of what sexual abuse means ? what we?re taught as children. None of those things were happening to me in that way. So how could I call a helpline like that and blame everything on my dad, when it was my fault?
That would be like shoplifting with my friend, and then as I run out of the store with my pockets filled with chocolate, turning and shouting to the shop assistant that my friend was stealing. I couldn?t do that to my dad. I couldn?t lump it all on him.
We?re Taught So Differently
Everything they teach children is that they won?t like it. That it hurts ? yeah, it did hurt when I was younger. But not like they say.
Sometimes I think to myself that this was the most prominent relationship I have ever had. I would write it was the best one, but that?s not the right word, and I can?t think what else to use, but then when I think about it, maybe it was. From the age of 4 to at least 19 it was happening. That?s probably the longest sexual relationship I?ve ever had in my life. Naturally, we measure future things with past things, so why wouldn?t I use that one?
Even though I have explained myself, I still sit here, wondering why I am writing this. I don?t know, aside from to tell someone else looking like I did that they aren?t alone. I don?t have any piece of wondrous advice about it.
It plagues me a lot. Makes my head spin when I try to think about it and think it out logically. I still can?t say I was sexually abused because it still feels like lies. I know people will say I was innocent because I was a child, but no. I wasn?t. I remember my head. I remember being the one to start things sometimes. It was like some craving inside me that needed it, wanted it even. I don?t even know why.
Maybe I craved the arousal and the release.
It was always like a bad cycle when I was a child. I?d try not to go to him. If I didn?t go, he?d leave me alone. But I?d give in. Climb in bed and then afterwards, I?d cut my arms in my room, cut my legs, carve words into my skin like freak and other expletives. I?d cry myself to sleep most of the time, and that seemed to get worse the older I was. I don?t even know why. Maybe because I knew I was sick, with this sick need.
I remember a therapist once asking me to visualise myself now and my younger self standing at the top of the stairs. And my younger self wanted to go into that room. She asked me what I?d do. I told her ? I?d push me down the stairs and walk away.
Sometimes now, those thoughts keep me awake, and I feel them in my chest like a wound-up ball that stops me breathing. It makes me want to cut. It makes me want to hurt the kid inside.
It was my fault.
I liked it.
I wanted it.