Yes, it went well. A few people came up to me and thanked me for my "share." However no one self-identified as CSA. Perhaps next week. A few who normally talk to me seemed to shy away. Perhaps I am reading too much into things. We shall see.
What is so helpful about 12 Step groups is no doubt what you would hope to find in a survivors group... there is great respect for one another's experience, so it is possible to speak honestly about your experience without others judging you or giving you unwanted advice. You speak into silence and what you share is received with respect, much as happens here. And even though the focus of 12 Steps is some behavior members find problematic, such as overeating, or under-eating, or drinking, or drug use... you can pretty much count on the fact those behaviors are a manifestation of some form of early trauma. You may have noticed that quite a few men who post here reference their problems with food, alcohol and drugs. There are also 12 Step fellowships for folks addicted to sexual acting out which is probably an issue for many on this website.I'm not quite sure why I'd need to be in a 12-step group. A support group for survivors seems much more useful and potentially helpful for me.
Very good points. I agree with you that even organizations that might theoretically accept men do not advertise that and, in effect, deter men from coming to them. Mainly, I guess, I was thinking of a Newsweek article several years ago in which the author and another feminist were blaming the Roman Catholic abuses on men, while the various victims advocate groups in the article didn't seem to go there.@learning2remember - I'm so glad you had a good experience with the YWCA. That was heartwarming to read.
That organization should be burned to the ground.
I'm not sure about that. It may be true with sexual assault and abuse, but it is definitely not the case with organizations that deal with domestic violence. The Violence Against Women Act allows organizations to discriminate against men in their programming, and most do.
The group I'm attending is at a rape crisis center that accepts men. They don't like to, necessarily, but they do. There's no indication from any of their materials or their website that they accept male clients and I find that's pretty usual. These places don't advertise they serve men, so no men bother showing up and they're fine with that.
Sounds like that group was poorly run. I don't think that would fly at the group I'm in. Even if it did, I'd certainly say something about it. But I know a lot of guys wouldn't be able to, nor should they have to if the moderators do their job properly.felt like a perp just being there as all the women talked about was men in their lives who abused them
I think I'm jealous? I almost stopped by this place where I could theoretically start a meeting but it's all men and I have some history there. IDK if I want to reopen that can of worms.Oh crap - I meant to come back to this, but I totally forgot! My apologies, gentlemen!
I went to my support group last Wednesday and it was much, much better than the previous week. It pretty much convinced me that there ARE people IRL who get it, who've been there, who are there now, who are feeling the same things as me. Men AND women.
Four survivors (including me) again with two therapists. The guy from last week was back, with two new women. The topic was "Anger," but we didn't really talk about anger except in the ways our abuse made us really angry. There was a discussion of sex, and how none of us could really "do" it - and we all really, really wanted so much to experience it in the way that non-traumatized people do. That was a really hard conversation, but I know I'm not alone. And it was incredibly valuable to see that in real life there DOES seem to be a place where men's and women's experience can align. I felt like I really heard and understood how hard it was for the women in the group to say "no" to their partners even though they couldn't feel anything, and I felt like they really heard and understood me when I said how men were always supposed to be up and ready for sex. And the other man in the group is gay, and the "always turned on" aspect for HIM was a LOT worse, which I never considered before.
So there were many, many things to think about, but also I am just so, so grateful I got to experience and share. Hearing and being heard - I never expected it to be so powerful, but it is.
Looking forward to tomorrow's meeting very much.
Yeah, I can see how this would be a really big hurdle for a lot of guys. I'd actually prefer a men-only group, but there aren't any around here.I seriously don't do any male only things and never have since I realized.