My past haunts me while destroying my present. Several years ago I’ve reported sexual abuse done by my father which happened 7-8 years before that.
Telling police about it was horrible. The woman was for the most part ok apart from asking me how I reacted like that freaking matters. But the guy who came in after that… His whole attitude was "you’re a liar and I’m gonna show it to you ". I had to describe all the incidents all over again. He kept on saying things like maybe he meant this or that, when I told him about a violent fight between my parents his answer was “every couple fights”. Whole conversation I was made to validate my abuse and it was so humiliating. He even asked me what was my last class about (I was studying psychology) suggesting that somehow due to the class topic I made this story up?! How was that relevant? And if that wasn’t enough he straight up asked me WHY I WANT TO RUIN MY FATHER’S LIFE. EXCUSE ME!!!
I assume he was like that because of rare occurrence of false reports but it shouldn’t rely on treating the victim like a suspect when I have to worry that if I tell the same story in the same words that I wouldn’t be believed cause it would seem rehearsed. Humiliating and condescending approach is NOT a way to go.
My parents talked to the police and my mother painted this picture of me as an overly sensitive child, she claimed she was near one of incidents I reported and she didn’t see anything (due to the layout of our apartment, angle of our positions and a very low light she might not have but I’m sure police just assumed it didn’t happen then). She was mad at me for even going to the police, consistently kept asking me how I can be sure it was really a sexual abuse and even if I think that it was can I just forgive him. She only cared about keeping this joke of a family together and didn’t care what I was going through. She stayed with my father and I basically had no support.
My father is a highly manipulative person, before talking to him my mom seemed to believe me but after she changed her mind, he would always persuade her to his cause in the past, so no wonder he succeeded once again.
Not surprisingly the case wasn’t investigated by the prosecutor because they’ve decided that he was just showing “fatherly love”. Squeezing your child’s ass, patting it etc is showing love and not sexual abuse?! How can a person think that is beyond my comprehension. The justice system in my country is a one big joke.
I’m done dealing with it, existing with a memory of it all and knowing that absolutely no one believes me to this day. I will write more later, right now my thumbs hurt and everything is blurry because of tears.
Edit: one more important thing - I strongly regret not telling the police that my mother once told me that my father raped her (she used that word). At the time I felt it was her story to tell but in hindsight I should have the police about it. I don’t know if it would actually help given their attitude but at least now I wouldn’t have to wonder if it would made the difference.
Once while I was talking to my mom after this whole ordeal she was complaining that I don’t talk to her about my feelings. So later I did and she said that I’m manipulating her by telling how I feel. It hurts that my mom is still with my abuser and loves him. I live in a different city now and one time I visited her there was a lovey dovey note on the table they’d were exchanging, saying how much they love each other and it felt like a stab to the chest. Their marriage was far from perfect, he was never a good husband or father, which makes it “fatherly love” explanation even more absurd to me. I honestly don’t know how my mother is even able to be with him.
Oh my goodness! I am so sorry that you experienced that! Going through sexual assault is difficult enough… especially when it’s someone you loved and trusted… and then to not be believed by the police is devastating. It feels like they’re telling you that your feelings are unimportant and you are exaggerating.
I’m so sorry that your dad abused you and that your mom turned a blind eye. I’m sorry that the people who were supposed to protect you ended up being the source of your pain. I’m sorry that you did exactly what you’re supposed to do and you never got any justice.
I was sexually abused as a child, and it has been a long and difficult road to work through the confusion and the trust issues after getting out of the situation. It’s a hard road to walk, but you’re not alone.
Here are the things that are helpful for me when I’m struggling: Counseling, Good friends affirming my feelings, talking through it over and over, working on self love and self care, and speaking positive truth over myself.
Forgiving my abuser has been a big part of this. But please understand that forgiveness does not mean excusing their behavior. It doesn’t mean trusting them. It doesn’t mean that you can’t cut them out for your own mental health. Forgiveness is for you, for your soul, for your mental health. Forgiveness means that their actions no longer have the power to hurt you.
This is based on my experience, so hopefully it’s helpful to you! But if not, that’s okay! Just know that I’m on your side! I believe you! Keep reaching out.
Thank you SO MUCH. Both the police and my family truly invalidated my experience, it’s hard knowing that. I’ve always kinda struggled with the concept of forgiveness, does it also mean that you’re not angry about what happened? My mom wanted me to forgive him so we can go back to how it was, she hates conflict and she cared more about avoiding changes than my well being.
I was never close with my dad, never had any loving feelings towards him but he was still my parent and as you said his job was to protect me not harm me.
I’ve also been sexually abused by a stranger on the public transportation but I didn’t even bother telling anyone because I didn’t wanna hear yet again that it wasn’t like that and I’m just sensitive. I guess I wasn’t notified that deliberately touching someone’s private parts without their consent is now allowed. People think that somehow if you’ve been sexually abused once it can never happen again, like you have some limit or something. Not to mention if they don’t believe you even the first time, then for them it will just prove that you’re exaggerating. Because of all that I’ve developed anxiety about going out and when I do go out I am constantly on edge and worrying that someone will just grab my ass. If a stranger can do a similar thing in the broad daylight, on a tram in front of other people I truly think there are no safe spaces. I don’t wanna be paranoid about going out because you have to go shopping, to work etc but knowing the danger I can’t just ignore it.
I know that counselling can be helpful but since it was advised to me with the attitude that there is something wrong with me and I should fix myself instead of making accusations, I feel like I would be confirming their view by going to the therapy now. My mom straight up told me that she wishes I would have talked to her before reporting because she would convince me not to do it and to go see a psychologist. Sure mom, I would just be going to therapy and then back home to you and my father abuser and pretend everything is fine.
I have so many thoughts running trough my mind… Yet again thank you reading and responding, I highly appreciate it. When I read those 3 simple yet powerful words “I believe you” I started to cry, but for a change it was comforting.
I’m sorry you are also a victim. It helps knowing I’m not alone but at the same time it’s so sad that things like that even happen in this world.
Forgiveness for me did lead to letting go of the anger, but it doesn’t make your relationship with your parents all butterflies and rainbows. And it certainly doesn’t mean hiding the truth under the rug and never talking about it again so your abusers can get on with their lives. It’s more for your benefit than theirs, and it’s certainly a process!
Our world is a messed up place. It’s never okay for someone to touch your body without consent. It’s not overreacting or being sensitive. I’ve been called “sensitive” all my life by well-intentioned people who didn’t have the capacity to deal with my (normal and healthy) emotions. Being called sensitive is a manipulative way to tell you that your feelings are wrong and that you should keep them to yourself because obviously you’re overreacting. You’re not overreacting. No one gets to touch you without permission. No one gets to tell you that your feelings are wrong. No one gets to tell you how to process and how to heal. The path to healing is not full of black and white, right and wrong answers. It’s not clear cut and easy and clean. It’s messy and difficult and completely unique to you. Counseling is truly for you, not for making others comfortable. It’s not a “Here! Do this and let them fix you so I don’t have to deal with your emotions!” It’s a lifeline for you to start on the path to process and heal. To help you learn coping mechanisms to feel safe in public. It’s the beginning of a long road with someone who is on your team helping you find the path you want to take.
My journey is not your journey. But truly, there is hope and light at the end of the tunnel. And friends along the way! You are loved and valued. I believe you and I believe in you!
I know that for many people forgiveness was freeing and positive and I’m glad it helped you too but to be honest I don’t wanna forgive.
I don’t wanna stop being angry, I would feel like I lost a fight. To me as long as I’m hurting I’m being true to myself. Maybe it’s weird and unhealthy but it’s how I feel.
On an emotional level I know counseling would benefit me, I just can’t seem to shake the thought that if I did that my family would think they were right all along and I can’t risk giving them that satisfaction. Yes, I probably care too much about how they view me.
I still love my mom, talk to her and visit her but I don’t trust her. I never will. I feel like she truly betrayed me. My father is dead to me, I hate him, I don’t care if he actually drops dead tomorrow. The only downside would be my mom trying to convince me to go to his funeral ugh. I even had the thought that if I die before him (accident or suicide or whatever) I don’t want him to attend my funeral. Not sure if there is a legal way to do it in my country.
Anyway, thanks for listening. I feel a little better being able to get it out of my system in a supportive environment.
Totally understandable! You get to choose the best path for you!