Brave Boy - Part 2

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Brave Boy – Part 2

A new day ~ Every morning starts a new day, a blank slate for thoughts and actions.

Don’t look back in anger, or forward in fear, but around in awareness. James Thurber

This is a VERY brief synopsis of the primary trauma I survived – some of the names have been changed.

When I was 5 years old, I was raped by a “barbarian” - the brother in law of a family friend. This was my mother’s friend, Eileen. One day she showed up at our apartment and begged us to go for a walk in the park with her. We went and that is where the rape happened. Her 6 year old daughter, Marleen, was forced to hold me and watch as her Uncle raped and mutilated me with a knife. He threatened to kill my whole family if I ever told. I told Marleen that my father could beat him up. She said her Uncle would get his brother to help.

When my mother found out about the rape (later that day) she went nuts and had what some would call a “nervous breakdown”. My mother’s hysteria was ironic because she, too, sexually abused my brother & me over the early years of our lives. We were not allowed to talk about the rape in front of her. It became our secret. You see, my grandmother was babysitting my brother and I when Eileen came to plead with us to go on a walk with her. My grandmother and brother were also violated on that walk. I, at age 5, knew that these men intended to hurt my grandmother and attempted to beat them up to protect her – of course I was just picked up and carried away – at which point I learned that I was helpless to prevent what was to follow… Eileen’s brother in law was accompanied by at least 2 other men. The events of this walk became a secret that my brother and I kept between ourselves and our grandmother – until such time that my mind blocked my conscious recall – at that point, my subconscious mind held our secret… until I recalled it some 30+ years later.

When I confronted my mother, Joanne, in my late 30’s about the rape in the park by Eileen’s brother in law, she again went nuts and said she never knew about it. She blamed me for ruining the last years of my grandmother’s life by bringing it up. She made me say that she never knew, because if I didn’t, she would die. (A veiled suicide threat in my mind). If she couldn’t even acknowledge that she DID know about a rape she did not commit, how could I ever confront her for the sex abuse she herself perpetrated against my brother and me? She was too frail emotionally to handle it – at least that is what my thinking/feelings were at the time. So I never confronted her about the evil she perpetrated while she was alive. I did finally, at age 67, “confront” her symbolically just last week. It was very emotional to finally tell her the truth about what she did even though she became hysterical, even though she said she would die. Prior to this I had thought I was being a good Christian in putting her emotional health above my own, I thought that by not confronting her I was being true to these biblical principles: Matthew 5:44 - But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

Romans 12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

So now, I wish to live the rest of my life bearing witness to these horrors – people rape and otherwise sexually abuse children… Boys can be victims, mothers can be perpetrators, witnesses can be silent… the human mind protects itself by shielding the conscious mind from memories of these trauma – until such time that the truth can be borne – and, as such, I have a duty to the little boy who was me to announce this to the “evil doers” * and to the world…. This spreading of awareness is ministry – it is a first step in eradicating this evil – it is lighting a candle in the darkness.

*( I say this realizing that: "The line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either, but right through every human heart." - Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn)

“At last the only thing that is sacred is the sanctity of one’s own mind.” - Emerson

Here is a good article about bearing witness: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/meaningful-you/201312/the-power-and-strength-bearing-witness
 
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