Re-Abuse Through Denial and Willful Ignorance

Oncewaslost

Registrant
My mom shared a photo of a family reunion claiming that it was taken in the summer of 1990. My cousin corrected her and said that it was taken in summer of 1992. I know that my cousin is correct because the baby she is holding in the picture was born in March of 92. This is important because the police were told that my brother (who was also in the picture) had been molesting me since I was two years old. He got caught because he had been molesting my best friend/next door neighbor. That happened in August or September of 91...the picture was taken in summer of 1992, which means that my parents took us on a vacation and pretended that everything was completely normal nearly a year after it was discovered that he had been abusing me. You could tell by our body language that our relationships have been severed and we are the only family in the picture who is not showing some sort of affection. I've been trying to piece together the chronological order of these events and this is what I have discovered.
 

Oncewaslost

Registrant
Here's a poem that I wrote about the situation and a letter I wrote to my brother when I made the decision to have my name legally changed.

STILL?
I thought I forgave
I thought I was free
These things from my past
Bring me to my knees

I cry out to God
I'm begging him please
these things from my youth
just won't seem to leave

why didn't I just do it?
suicide the option
but, I couldn't go through with it
and I'm still crying out
hoping one day I change
hoping one day God rids me
of all this heartache and pain
molested 12 years
equals a life of fear and a whole lot of tears

but I'm not crying now
at least not in defeat
I gave my life to Jesus
now I bow at his feet

but, it ain't finished yet
strayed off the path
the devil had set
he had a plan for me
it ended six feet below
but, it started in a "good"
or a "functional home"

Mom and Dad were working
while my brother raised us kids
no one ever thought to think of what the problem is

I'm crying when you leave,
I'm crying when you come home.
still no one seemed to listen
in our so called "perfect home".

Until police came to our door
and opened up your eyes
now for once we finally see
behind the dark disguise

a life of lies to hide behind
a life of secret sins.
A man? A child? In our home?
When did this begin?

Did you know the pain you'd bring?
Brother did you think?
Did you know how Mom would cry?
How often Dad would drink?

Did you know the choice you made,
would bring you to know Christ?
And what the Devil meant for wrong
would give eternal life

That's life, it's just not perfect,
Sometimes I wonder
if it will ever be worth it.

STILL...

Written by Matthew Owenby 2004

We need to talk, I need you to know and understand that I was by no means a willing participant in the violation you committed against my trust and my soul, by using me as your own personal sex slave. I would like to know when and how this started? How old I was when you started touching me. I would also like to know If there is an ounce of remorse in your heart for the pain you have caused our family? It has been difficult to see your picture or even hear or say your name without cringing and wanting to go into a blind rage. I know that you exist, but I have blocked you out of my memories in every way I can. Unfortunately, this means I can't remember much from my childhood. If it wasn't for the fact that I want to remember the good times that our family had, I would never even try to retrieve these memories. I know that you did not know what you were doing would cause so many problems for yourself and for that reason you might feel bad, but it was so much more difficult to be left here with the family that has been severed. Dad always trying to reunite us and Mom always allowing Dad to guide the family down his drunken (selfish) path that cannot and will not ever be mended (e.g. making me visit you on our family vacations as though nothing had happened).
I don't want anything from you, just for you to know that by the time I was eleven I obeyed you without argument and that may have felt like a willing participation, but it wasn't. You are so lucky that I have not acted on the hate that I have had for you, I will not act on this hate. I will let you go on living your life as though you're happy, because I know that the torment that you have burdened me with is also burdening you and that gives me great joy. I can forgive you for your ignorant actions, but the hardest thing for me to even think to accept or forgive is that you have never even gave me the slightest hint that you are sorry for the way your actions have affected us and more specifically me. My point in writing you has nothing to do with you or your response, I am going to heal and I am not going to care who hears my story. Dad has suppressed me and guilt tripped me long enough. If you have a side of the story such as; you were molested, the situation with your sister/mom messed you up, I don't know you had a fascination or unhealthy infatuation, whatever the case, I'm done pretending that you don't exist and I'm taking my mind back. All the areas that I won't think about because you were there are now available for me to remember at my own free will as I see fit. You may have been a lot older and stronger , but My God is Greater, he found me in my suffering and gave me hope. I hope you come to a place where you have accepted the love of God and move on with your life, but I also hope that you reflect often on your mistakes and never repeat them. Either way you're not my problem.
 

Oncewaslost

Registrant
I sent him that letter when I was 34 years old and in the process of changing my last name legally. I changed my name because I was tired of having the same last name as him. I guess the name change was me taking a stand against the cycle of denial my family had always hid behind. My mom supported me through all of it, however she never stood for me herself. Instead my parents rented my brother an apartment about ten miles away from us (and that was only because the neighbors were involved) and we went to his house for a family dinner not two weeks after he moved out. This began a cycle of my parents ignoring how it would affect me and forcing me to visit him. My parents then paid to move my brother to Bullhead and we would visit him on our vacations. We would go on a 2 - 3 week vacation and would visit him for at least 1 of those weeks. The sexual abuse was done at this point, but until I was 17, we would always visit him. My parents would tell us we were going to visit our family in Oregon, but it was really only so they can visit my brother in Seattle. At 14, I ran away the day we were leaving for a vacation. My dad was furious. When he found me at my friend’s house, I told him I wouldn’t go on vacation if we were going to visit Billy (my brother). He picked me up and threw me in the car (upside down – I don’t know how, but upside down). Everytime he would throw me in the passenger seat of the car, he would have to run around to the driver’s seat and I would get out (I’m sure it was entertaining for my friends who were all watching through the window). This happened at least five times. During the final attempt, he flipped me upside down and I accidently kicked him in the face. He then dropped me on my head and punched me. I then got in his car. He drove us into the desert and began yelling at me. He was yelling, “If you want to go berserk, I’ll show you berserk!” and he strted driving in a way that scared me. After a few minutes of this, he stopped the car and got out. He began spinning in circles and he fell to the ground. I ran over to him and tried to wake him up, he was out cold. I started pleading with him, that if he woke up I’d go on the vacations and visit Billy. I was crying and making a bargain with God and miraculously…. He opened his eyes, we went home and finished packing for our trip. I really believe that he was acting and he manipulated me. For the next few years, I went on our vacations and I tried to make the best of it, but I’m not going to lie. This broke my spirits and hurt me as much, if not more than the original abuse. In response to your question…. I never spoke to the police about it again, just the one time when I was 11.
 

Oncewaslost

Registrant
He went to jail for 3 days. My parents found out that he had done this and they paid a large amount of money to get him tried as a minor. He has the same name as my dad, so they felt they needed to bury it to save my dad's career. I have always remembered that my brother snuck in the bedroom while my parents were talking to the police and told me to tell the police that he was under 18 the last time it happened. I was used to doing what he said, so that's what I did. I have recently been questioning if I am remembering it wrong, I wonder if it was actually my dad who told me to say this? Oddly, my mom was also molested, so you would think she would have been more vigilant. I guess she just didn't see it coming somehow. This came out right around the same time that she got a neck injury from work. Also, my grandpa on my dad's side had just died, as well as both my great grandmothers on my mom's side. All three of them died, then this came out. It was four back-to-back blows, then my parents shut down and stopped parenting. I am now 41 years old and am getting ready to attempt to go through prolonged exposure therapy. This is the second time I am attempting to go through this. I kept getting triggered and need to do in vivo exposure therapy first. I am supposed to start tomorrow and feel I am much more prepared to do this work. Wish me luck.
 

MO-Survivor

Staff member
He went to jail for 3 days. My parents found out that he had done this and they paid a large amount of money to get him tried as a minor. He has the same name as my dad, so they felt they needed to bury it to save my dad's career. I have always remembered that my brother snuck in the bedroom while my parents were talking to the police and told me to tell the police that he was under 18 the last time it happened. I was used to doing what he said, so that's what I did. I have recently been questioning if I am remembering it wrong, I wonder if it was actually my dad who told me to say this? Oddly, my mom was also molested, so you would think she would have been more vigilant. I guess she just didn't see it coming somehow. This came out right around the same time that she got a neck injury from work. Also, my grandpa on my dad's side had just died, as well as both my great grandmothers on my mom's side. All three of them died, then this came out. It was four back-to-back blows, then my parents shut down and stopped parenting. I am now 41 years old and am getting ready to attempt to go through prolonged exposure therapy. This is the second time I am attempting to go through this. I kept getting triggered and need to do in vivo exposure therapy first. I am supposed to start tomorrow and feel I am much more prepared to do this work. Wish me luck.
Wow @Oncewaslost. Thanks for sharing all this. I am so sorry you have had to go through all of this, but I can really appreciate your faith and how it has helped you to process things, and to have the courage to move forward and heal - in spite of the stupid sh*t your family did and didn't do.

My story was much the same - but different. Isn't that the way our stories are? So much the same... but different. I don't have a brother, and my dad was my abuser. Sounds like your brother was not only your brother - but was put into a caregiver role much of the time and therefore filled much of your dad's role. My mom was also sexually abused, and did not figure out what was going on. I will say, I think little boys deal with CSA differently than little girls - and that's part of the challenge our moms had. Plus, whether it was her husband or child, it seems to be hard for moms to think they married or birthed someone who could do such things.

I read all of this and thought a lot about your brother and what happened to him. Same thing other people sometimes ask me about my dad: do you know why he did that to you? Was he sexually abused too? Questions like that. I'm sure you have had that question plenty. It's impossible not to ask that question ourselves and attempt to find a reason why, but that's not the focus for you right now. To your point - he is not your concern. Your brother was supposed to care for you at the time, and not use you and screw you up. And it is his responsibility to reconcile his own behaviors and eventually (hopefully) ask forgiveness and (maybe) reconcile with you (if you choose to give him that gift). Even if he does... that relationship will always be complicated.

I don't know what "prolonged exposure therapy" is - but it sounds intense. If you have the time and capacity to do something intensive - that's awesome. I hope and pray you can find out a lot, and accomplish a lot in this time. I won't wish you luck, but will instead hope and pray for God and your therapist to reveal what you need at this time in order to maximize your healing!
 

Guss

Registrant
It is very sad. Parents who are more concerned about what other people will think than the well being of their own child. I am sorry you had to endure it.
 

une.vie.d.espoir

Registrant
Just a personal touch.

I think that when you tell our parents that you have been sexually abused, there is probably a question that comes to mind. Has the abuser penetrated is rectum or vulva. On this idea also there is immediately a terrifying judgment that the parents make. I had to be the protector of my boy or my daughter and I saw absolutely nothing to protect them.

There are some parents who yes, they completely ignores the situation precisely because they feels abandoned to themselves and knows that they will be judged high and low by their peers.

On the other hand, the majority will think of their children who have been abused and they will support their children as best they can.

Me when I went to see my mother to say that Marcel made me do things. She didn't believe me at all except that later she came to see me in my room and asked my forgiveness and that was when it all started and Marcel went to jail.

I did this around my 20s to understand that my mother believed me and most important she protected me.

Take care,

Jp
 
Top