Everyone has a story – and sometimes we define our life with this story. Depending on how the story goes, we will either be grateful for this life, or hate it.
I am trying to detach my self from my story.
I do not know a lot of people’s life stories first-hand, so I cannot compare, but I’ve had lots of ups and downs, good times and bad times, disasters and miracles.
I don’t have many memories of when I was a child. I was very aloof and quiet and I remember now that I was felt very cold inside, very dark.
Looking back, maybe that was my way of coping with whatever was happening. Maybe I was numbing myself to everyone around me. I don’t know. I cannot remember much from that time. From what I do remember, my mind was blank most of the time.
Writing this down is hard, my throat is constricted and I can feel the tears brimming up.
I’ll start from the very first memory I can remember.
I remember a kid reaching under my skirt at the lunch table in kindergarten.
I remember being dressed by a woman every day for school in a foreign land. I remember I didn’t have underpants on most of the days.
I remember the days my mother visited and I got to stay with her in an apartment. I remember those were happier days.
I remember sitting in the classroom, all by myself. I remember not being liked. I remember the teacher’s disapproval and frustration/irritation.
Then I changed schools and returned home to live with my parents.
I remember hands reaching under my skirt again. This time it wasn’t of that boy from kindergarten. I wasn’t at the lunch table. I was in my bed, what was supposed to be my safe place.
I remember the hands going under my nightgown. Night after night. Year after year.
I pushed the hands away, it didn’t stop. I cried, it didn’t stop. I remember being scared, and feeling dirty.
I remember the hatred I felt. I remember hating that I had to live with him. I remember hating to pretend like everything was normal.
I started my new school. I remember being aloof. I didn’t pay attention in class. I scraped by every year and my grades kept deteriorating. I remember people saying that I’m weird. I remember not being liked. I was the only new girl in class. I wasn’t social. I remember sitting alone and keeping to myself.
My life and heart felt cold and dark.
A year later, some light peeked in, in the form of dance. I remember feeling cheerful when I danced. I remember feeling alive – and it lasted until I got back home and in bed. Then the door would creak open and I would feel the darkness of the night resonate in my heart again.
Years passed by slowly, yet quickly. I don’t have many memories. But I remember how I felt.
Confused, hurt, ashamed, guilty, panicked, afraid, conflicting, angry, sad, suicidal, irrelevant, unloved, insecure, unprotected, unheard, lonely, violated, stormy, cold, disgusted, hopeless.
I remember feeling like my life was a never-ending dark night and that I would be stuck forever.
I celebrated birthdays and Christmases and laughed and smiled and danced. No one knew what was going on within.
One day, I had a breakdown in middle school in front of the entire class. A couple of girls started touching and tickling and wouldn’t stop. I told them to stop, they didn’t. I told them to let me go, they didn’t. I told them to stop touching me, they didn’t. I lost it. I screamed and banged my head on the lockers, on the walls. They freaked out. (Who wouldn’t?) People called me weird. They thought I was mentally unbalanced. I probably was. They called me mad.
I needed help. But who could help unless they knew that. They just thought I was strange.
He would look through the bathroom/toilet door vents. I would be afraid to go to the bathroom. Eventually I started covering the vents with the bathroom mat. If it slipped, I would get scared that he was watching me and start crying helplessly on the pot.
As soon as I got a room of my own, I started locking my door at night, or whenever I was in the house.
It annoyed everyone. They hated it. I didn’t care. They’d ask me why I would keep locking my door. I didn’t know what to say, or how to explain. They called me disobedient.
Finally, he was gone. But I kept locking my room. I got better at school. I made friends. I paid attention in class. My grades improved. I graduated from high school.
One day, he came back. I heard the door open silently and I opened my eyes to see him coming in. I had forgotten to lock my room. I got scared. Then I got angry. I felt hate.
I screamed. I screamed calling for protection, to show that he had come into my room. I said that he ‘came into my room!’ He said he came in to borrow some pillows. That was enough to fool. I was screamed at for being crazy and screaming like a mad person just for this and creating a ruckus in the middle of the night.
I hated when it wasn’t seen for what it was.I probably shouldn’t have expected it to have been understood. But nevertheless, I hated for it.
He left the room smiling smugly. He won. But he understood that I wouldn’t be silent anymore. He stopped coming into my room. He finally left me alone.
I didn’t stop locking my room. Not when he was gone, and especially not when he was at home.
I came very close to telling on him and about it once in the middle of an argument. I warned him that I would tell . He looked at me and said, “Yeah, what will you tell them? What will you tell them?”. He gave me a murderous threatening stare. I didn’t tell them. I just walked out and went into my room instead.
I finally opened up about it two years back.
It would be an understatement to say that they were shocked and furious. They cried and asked me why I didn’t tell them before when I was a child.
I told them about the night he came in ‘for the pillows’ and the argument at the dining table. They asked me if this was why I locked my room all the time. They finally understood that, that was not me being disobedient.
They said they would talk to him. I pleaded for them not to.
I was told not to tell anyone else about this.
I was told that I must not let this define my life and move past it.
I was told that they would have a talk with him, because it was important. I told that I didn’t want them to, but I couldn’t help it if they still did, against my wish.
They did, and one day came to room, followed by him.
He said sorry. He asked me to forgive him. He said it was good that I finally told them about it, and wished I would have done it before. He told me not to let this ruin my life. He said he didn’t know what was wrong with him and what he was doing.
I didn’t believe the last sentence. And because of that I don’t know if I can believe the rest. I don’t trust him. That will never change.
They forgave him and everything is back to ‘normal’. Everyone acts like it never happened.
I did tell people. I told my therapist. I told a few close friends. It would be nice to forgive him. I like the idea of forgiving him. But I don’t know if I can. I don’t know if I will. I know forgiveness will help me feel lighter and freer.
I understand that ultimately he’s essentially a soul, just like me, and souls cannot be sexually abused. I understand that we’re all the same, that we’re one. That no soul can hurt another. I understand this. I believe it. I get it – in my head. But I’m not sure of it, and I’m not sure if I can forgive him.
This post has been long overdue. I knew I had to write about this, and I’m glad I finally did. Writing about it and letting it out there matters. Please, if you know anyone or even suspect anyone being abused (any kind), find them some help or at least get them to talk about it. It’s never too early or too late to talk about it. It’s never too late to sought help. It’s never too late to start living.