I am still engaging in dialogue with the abuse survivor who thinks I ought to keep my mouth shut about victims of sexual abuse being sexually stimulated or otherwise enjoying some aspects of the abuse.
This person has implied that I “wasn’t physically scarred” by the incest. (By the way, her comments are being posted in a public forum for all to see. I am not disclosing anything confidential).
Putting aside the fact that presuming that I have not suffered was pulled out of thin air, by someone who does not know me and does not read my blog…..
The notion that children who experience physical pleasure with their abuser means they will not, or do not suffer, is one of the most stupid things I have ever read.
As a child, I was punished for masturbating, which was taught to me by my father. But more importantly, I was severely punished by my mother for wanting to be with my father -for going to him for the sexual abuse because he conditioned me to like it and to need it.
As a child, I was given all the blame by one of my siblings because my sibling thought I was the sexual aggressor, -that I was the guilty one.
Between my mother and sibling, I was outright made to feel like a worthless piece of shit child who deserved nothing but shame and blame.
Even more devastating for me was that, when I got older and became closer to an age where I could become pregnant, my father stopped paying sexual attention to me, and this was emotionally traumatic for me.
Mix that emotional trauma with the guilt and shame, and you have a cocktail for self-destruction.
As an adult, I developed eating disorders, migraine headaches, regular headaches, stomach aches, back pain, self-punishment issues, and became sexually promiscuous, and sexually dysfunctional. In addition, my only self-worth was based in my sexuality and attention from men.
I might even have suffered more from the pleasure in the abuse, than from the original rape, the betrayal, and the fear instilled in me from the death threats. Untold numbers of adult survivors of child sexual abuse, who experienced sexual pleasure have serious problems with substance abuse, compulsive gambling, and have killed themselves because of their inner torment.
People who hide from the truth, who do not allow the truth to be spoken, and who use personal insults to silence people like me, are implying that children who go through this are sick and should be ashamed of what they feel with their perpetrator. The sexual organs of children do not have a brain. Children cannot help but go through enjoyment, orgasms, (or for some) a desire for their perpetrator. Sometimes they even get jealous when their abuser turns to another child.
No matter what a child does to gain affection, “love,” attention, or pleasure, it is NEVER their fault, EVER. The perpetrator is 100% guilty and many people need to let go of their love for their perpetrator in order to see this. Many adults still feel a romantic love for their abuser. Like with me, I felt my father and I were lovers -like boyfriend and girlfriend. It took me a few years in therapy to eradicate the idea that I was an accomplice in the abuse because of any excitement or pleasurable feelings. I had to heal my inner need to see my father as my lover, and not the criminal child rapist he was.
When an abuse survivor places guilt or shame on their inner child, or accuse themselves of being ‘bad’ or ‘sick’ for taking pleasure in their physical body reacting to the sexual acts, it is like poison to the mind and body of that person.
Instead of condemning the little one inside, survivors can embrace that child. My personal message is that you would not blame a current child victim for feeling physical enjoyment, so you cannot blame yourself—you were once that child.
When I first began to have memories of sexual pleasure with my father, it was overwhelming. This was a heavy burden to carry around for three decades. The day those memories first emerged, I lay in a ball clutching my gut. I cried so hard, I thought I would stop breathing. The emotions were excruciating. I thought it would kill me to feel those truths, but I am stronger because of it. I can now write openly about it without an ounce of pain, shame, or guilt.
How liberating this is for me.