Extreme Liberal's Blog

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I Was Sexually Assaulted As A Child

Teach Your Children What To Look For And Listen To Them!

I was sexually assaulted by two teenage boys in my neighborhood when I was around 10 years old. The two incidents were independent of each other. I don’t know exactly how old I was or the amount of time that separated the incidents, but based on what I remember, I’m pretty sure I was between 9 – 11 years old when the assaults happened. From what I’ve deduced, the teenagers were both around 4 years older than me.

It was a difficult time in my young life, my father died when I was 6 years old of a heart attack and my mother was a single, working mom — trying to raise 5 boys on her own. I never told my mother about the incidents. If I had, all hell would have broken loose and heads would have rolled. She was absolutely the best mother that ever walked the earth.

The first person I told about these assaults was a girlfriend, I was 20 years old at the time. I’ve since been very open about it and have come to terms with it. I encourage anyone else who has suffered through similar assaults to get it out in the open, talk to people. So much of the pain that people carry around is because they keep it to themselves.

Although there is a difference between my assaults and the ones perpetrated by Jerry Sandusky, there are also similarities. I was manipulated by these older boys in much the same way as the victims of Sandusky. I remember feeling special that these older boys wanted to hang around with me and actually were paying some attention to me. I remember the details of the incidents clearly, but I’m not sure if sharing those details will help anyone, so I will keep it vague. I would surely hate for some pedophile to get off on my descriptions of what happened. They involved oral sex, touching and in one case an attempt at penetration.

I’ll talk about each incident separately.

Greg was an older boy, like I said, approximately 4 years older than me from my recollection. He and I were a part of a group of kids in the neighborhood who decided to raise money for Muscular Dystrophy. We were going door to door trying to collect donations and we also organized a backyard play, a sketch comedy, that we put on for the neighborhood. We charged a nickel to watch. I was dressed up as a girl, with a short skirt, nylons, makeup and a wig. The reaction I got when I came out brought the house down. I remember getting all sorts of attention from everyone. I was a cute little boy and apparently made a pretty cute girl too. I can’t help but think back and wonder if that is the reason why this older boy decided to target me for his assault.

Not only did Greg assault me, but there was one instance when he had his younger sister, who was even younger than I was, participate as well. It happened in the rafters of his garage. I remember getting the impression that his sister had done this before. And I have a very blurry memory of his older sister, who was one of my babysitters for a while, being involved in a different incident. But that memory isn’t as clear as the others. I suspect that they learned it from their parents.

From what I can remember, there were 3 instances when he manipulated me into doing something to him. His tactics were similar to what I’ve heard about Jerry Sandusky, starting with touching, playing around, tickling and gradually becoming more sexual. I don’t think I had even started puberty yet, so it wasn’t sexual to me. I don’t recall how I broke away from his influence, but I do remember avoiding him in the neighborhood for the next few years, after which my mother remarried and we moved out of that neighborhood.

The other teenager who assaulted me lived two doors down from me and his name was John. He was the neighborhood bully and loudmouth. He was taking care of a neighbor’s yard while they were on vacation and he had access to their garage. He set up lawn chairs in the garage and had been hanging around in it. Similar to the other incident, I remember him paying special attention to me and I was flattered that an older kid cared what I had to say or wanted to hang around with me. He was the one who attempted to penetrate me, but I didn’t allow that to happen. He found another way to get off.

One “non-assault” detail that I remember was him giving me a Tic Tac and trying to tell me that it was a drug or something. Tic Tacs  had just come to America. I just googled “Tic Tacs” to see what year they came out and it was 1969, which would have made me 7 years old. So, I may have been even younger than I thought when this bastard assaulted me. I don’t remember a lot about that time in my life, I’m pretty sure I was in shock from the death of my father. Unfortunately, some of the memories I do have happened in that garage — two doors down from my house.

I decided to share my story because I know this happens way too much in our world and unless we talk about it, it will continue. There is no way to stop all of it, but if more people talk openly about it and share their experiences, maybe it will prevent at least some of it.

I remember how much better I felt after sharing what happened with Annie, my first love. She had also been molested by an older boy and we both cried and comforted each other as we revealed these assaults to each other for the first time.

I feel very fortunate that I grew up in a household that wasn’t repressed about sex or sexuality. I can only imagine how much guilt or shame I would have felt had I lived in a house filled with homophobia or other sexual repression.

For any young person who might be reading this, there are some things I want to share with you from my experience.

  • If an older kid or adult is paying extra attention to you or giving you things, you should be suspicious and tell your parents about it immediately. Even though you may feel special or like the attention, it is a sign that something isn’t right. It may be innocent, but don’t assume that it is, tell your parents about it.
  • It is NEVER alright for an older kid or adult to touch you in a sexual way or on areas of your body that are private.
  • If an older kid or adult tries to get you alone — away from others, don’t let them.
  • Be open and honest with your parents about anything that doesn’t feel right. If a parent or relative is doing something that makes you feel uncomfortable, tell a teacher or counselor at school or some other adult with whom you feel safe. It is not right for them to do that to you and you need to stop them from doing it.
  • Don’t feel ashamed if an older person or adult has manipulated you into doing something against your will. You are not to blame, these people are sick and need help and have taken advantage of you. Don’t let them make you feel guilty for what has happened, even if they succeeded in getting you to go along with them. If they tell you that you will get in trouble if you tell, don’t believe them. They are saying that to keep you from telling anyone.

There are many resources for people who are raped and sexually molested.

1in6.org is a place where males who have suffered through this can get confidential help.

RAINN: Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network – the nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization. National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1.800.656.4673 (will connect the caller to the nearest rape crisis center) or: National Sexual Assault Online Hotline at rainn.org. Educates the public about sexual assault, leads efforts to prevent sexual assault, improve services to victims and bring rapists to justice. http://www.rainn.org/  The “Get Involved” page: http://www.rainn.org/get-involved

National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence:  Advocates on the issues, designs and provides training, and facilitates collaboration among professionals who work with victims and perpetrators: law enforcement, judges, health care professionals, domestic violence and sexual assault advocates + local, state and federal agencies, educators, faith community leaders, media, and the military, etc http://www.ncdsv.org/index.html

Men’s involvement (whether as survivors, or as advocates): There are a bunch of organizations working specifically with men who want to address the issues of sexual violence  – NCDSV has a list of links here: http://www.ncdsv.org/ncd_linksmaleadvoc.html including the Canadian White Ribbon Campaign, co-founded by the late Jack Layton http://www.whiteribbon.ca/

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

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November 20, 2011 - Posted by | General | ,

10 Comments »

  1. THANK YOU for telling you story. the more people that come forward, the more others will not feel alone. And maybe someone else will see this and get the warning signs before it happens again

    Comment by rikyrah | November 20, 2011 | Reply

  2. Thanks for your story. Too many children have had sexual experiences forced upon them they didn’t like, which could have harmed development into healthy adults.

    Children who are under the age of adulthood are outside of the law in many cases, and adults are remiss for thinking that children are just “messing around”, experimenting with sexual feelings. This does happen among children near the same age, but it is most important that parents teach their children what behavior is appropriate, consensual (“I’ll show you mine if you show me yours!”), and what goes over the line. Sex shouldn’t be so taboo that children are afraid to talk about their thoughts and experiences with parents, teachers, clergy, etc.

    When I came out of the closet I was asked if I had ever been molested as a child by a gay man. Some have been so bold to ask if I liked kids or “twinks” (barely legal teenagers). My answer has always been “No!” So I have disappointed homophobes with their stereotypes. Many pedophiles are “married” and portray a straight life for their public. I didn’t even know a gay person until high school when a classmate started to flame and all of us guys avoided him as if he was a leper. I hung out with mostly jocks (some of whom liked to “mess around” on the “down low”). So no, I wasn’t preyed upon by a gay adult or as the homophobes say…..was “converted”! There was “messing around” in junior high school, like group masturbation contests for time and distance, but we were all the same age and nothing was forced. As far as I know all my childhood friends married and raised kids. When I was in psychotherapy to treat my substance abuse and suicidal thoughts because I didn’t want to be gay, I brought up the “messing around” as a youth and my doctor. He told me not to be concerned that such experiences “made me gay” saying he’d heard so many similar stories from his patients, even more so from females who often reported to him they learned to “French kiss” at slumber parties with girl friends.

    When I reached my 40’s I then had some younger partners in their 20’s (not unlike straight men whose second wives are often a younger model). I had gay friends my age but none wanted me as a lover. I had become bald and was putting on a beer belly. Sadly there is a lot of “ageism” in the gay community, more so among gay men than with lesbians. Fear of aging is possibly a reason that so many gay men are most concerned about their appearance, most fashion conscious and hit a gym nearly daily. My current partner (13 years now) is 21 years my junior being 51 and I am 72. He goes to a spinning class daily and looks mid-30’s. As my health declines, sometimes wonder if he will tire of looking after an “old” man as I am not the person he met when I was 59. We’ve been most compatible even though I don’t talk about 40’s radio/movies or 50’s black and white TV with him! We both love to travel as he spent 23 years in the US Navy and has been in 46 nations including living in the Philippines for 2 years.

    I think we need to be careful to not make our children afraid of every adult. Once again education is important. We had an old man in his 70’s in my neighborhood growing up who loved children and always had candy for us (that would probably get him categorized in today’s world as an “offender”). He had been a sulky driver in harness racing when he was young and had a bad accident on the track that left him a paraplegic, nearly a quadriplegic. He was all braced up but did have mobility using an aluminum walker. He lived alone in a garage converted to an apartment behind his brother’s house. His brother and his childless sister-in-law treated him shabbily and the whole neighborhood felt sorry for him. He loved to shuffle to a neighborhood vacant lot (across the street from his apt.) to watch us play baseball (Little League hadn’t been created yet) and he would give us compliments. Everyone of us kids loved old Charlie. My mother used to bake an extra pie for him since his sister-in-law would not bake for him. Charlie used to invite us kids (sometimes ALONE!) into his apartment where he liked to show us a big scrapbook of clippings from his racing days, even racing posters on his wall. He had once raced against the famous horse, Dan Patch. Once he gave me a horse bit and one of his many horseshoes which I still have. In later years when it seemed every one who liked children was a “sex offender”, my mother asked me if anything “funny” ever happened. I racked my brain and could not think of any situation where Charlie even talked about sex…not even about horse breeding. Being paraplegic he was probably impotent anyway. My mother said she always felt he was “safe” for us children to be around. Because of his severe accident, he didn’t marry nor could have had kids (back in that day). He finally went to a nursing home and once on a college vacation, I visited him for a last time. He was like everyone’s “Grandpa” and I truly believe he never tried anything with any of us kids who liked to have Charlie at our ball games cheering us into the bases. He would have been a most lonely old man if he didn’t have us children who liked to flock around him. I fear that people like Coach Sandusky of Penn State will ruin it for innocent persons like Charlie.

    Comment by grantinhouston | November 20, 2011 | Reply

    • Thank you so much for sharing your story and thoughts too. I agree that it is not necessary to make children afraid of every adult in order to teach them what to look out for, and to encourage them with a guarantee of 100% unconditional support should they run into uncomfortable situations. I particularly despise that this is in any way “tied” to sexuality — gay or otherwise, don’t even get me started.

      Comment by Regina | November 21, 2011 | Reply

      • A stereotype flouted by the homophobes is that “most” sex offenders are gay which is far from the truth. The majority of abusers are heterosexual and nearly twice as many young girls are abused than young males….27%:16%.

        http://www.advocatesforyouth.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=410&Itemid=336

        But the haters will continue to press the LIE that homosexuals are all predators. My gay friends and I are just as outraged at what happened at Penn State as are most heterosexuals. Maybe more so as we know we will falsely catch some “blame” when the married Coach Sandusky had mental health issues. For many who are abusers, the power over helpless victims is as much or more a “need” than the actual sex. It’s just another avenue for bullies. We may learn that the coach himself was abused as a child so the sickness repeats in each generation if it is not curtailed.

        BTW, Rick Perry falsely said in Iowa at the “Family” meeting in an Iowa megachurch this past weekend that he was even against gay couples adopting and said it is illegal in Texas. That is not true. However, in Texas only one person can be listed on the adopted child’s adoption certificate.

        http://www.dallasvoice.com/watch-gov-rick-perry-mislead-iowa-voters-gay-adoption-texas-1094976.html

        Comment by grantinhouston | November 21, 2011 | Reply

  3. Another incident on the Penn State police blotter from a decade ago becomes known today. Seems Penn State had special treatment unlike most government agencies like exemption from state “freedom of information” laws. So much surrounding sexual abuse is about POWER.

    http://www.centredaily.com/2011/11/20/2993505/penn-state-police-refer-reported.html

    Comment by grantinhouston | November 20, 2011 | Reply

  4. Thank you for sharing such a personal story.

    Comment by Dorothy Rissman | November 21, 2011 | Reply

  5. thanks for sharing this–indeed cases of child sexual abuse are so rampant.what saddens me is that most of the children affected do not have anyone they can easily confide in,especially when the assault is perpetrated by someone close/known to them

    Comment by carlton | November 21, 2011 | Reply

  6. Thank you for your honesty and courage. I think your guidelines are especially useful for parents in discussing this issue with their children.

    Comment by Deborah Montesano | November 21, 2011 | Reply

  7. Thank you so much for sharing this and for your “spot-on” points. I visit this blog every day, and have always deeply admired you and now just that much more.

    Comment by Regina | November 21, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks Regina, I appreciate your comments. I hope to be posting more frequently in the near future. Been vewy, vewy busy.

      Comment by ExtremeLiberal | November 21, 2011 | Reply


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