“You are a bad person.” “What’s wrong with you?” “Its your fault.” “You brought this on yourself.”
This was the general theme that seems to surround victims of sexual abuse. Society blames them, abusers blame them, and they tend to also blame themselves. Abuse is not the fault of the victim but we seem to coddle the abusers and look to the abused for their flaws, their issues, their defect that caused this problem they are unfortunately having to know about. How inconvenient our pain is to the world. Someone did unwanted sexual things and to blame them is to distract from who is actually at fault, the abuser themselves, and no one else.
No one wants to believe that people treat each other horribly. No one wants to believe in the Jekyll and Hyde personalities. My ex was/is very loved by his family and friends. What a facade he would put on and then when we were home he would also show that happy, nice person every once in awhile, giving me a glimpse of why I stuck around, trying to make things work. I thought I signed up for that “kind person” I thought he was. Everyone told me I was lucky and he was such a nice guy, ect, ect, bullshit, bullshit. The person I know as my ex husband is not the person that others saw. I didn’t want to believe it either but the truth is that the person I fell in love with doesn’t exist. It was his mask.
Forget talking about the pain that was caused or talking out problems. Bringing anything up like a healthy adult was out of the question. My pain of being raped was something I wasn’t allowed to bring up. You would think this would be a big red flag but at the time, I was just in more pain…and silent. He was aware of it and bringing it up was punishment in his eyes and would always result in verbal abuse towards me… sometimes to the point of my laying on the floor crying with him standing over me until I couldn’t take it anymore. A retaliation for even daring to talk about my own feelings. In that relationship, I didn’t have rights to my feelings. Being upset, angry, sad, depressed, hurt…not allowed without further consequences. Either verbal abuse and blaming me or long periods of time days up to a week of not even knowing where he was. No phone call, just gone for a few days. I had nothing but dealing with my pain and confusion on my own while he left to go do whatever. It was one of the most painful times in my life.
I loved him wanted and wanted to believe him…that he would never do it again, that I could trust him. I fought with myself constantly and little by little I started to become myself again. I had committed myself to this relationship, this marriage and that meant so much to me. In doing so I had not respected my own boundaries and thinking back, I really just wanted to be loved and cared for. My love, openness, and honesty was used against me.
He constantly asked me what was wrong with me, why I couldn’t just get over it, and so many interrogative questions that demanded answers until I blew my stack. I didn’t do anything wrong. He did. He hurt me. I tried to love someone who hurt me, knew it hurt, didn’t care that it hurt me, knew I didn’t want it, and took advantage of me like a coward. Once I started to blow up and speak the truth over his lies I came to realize how scared he was. He asked if I was punishing him and a spark of myself came back. The part that was so hurt that he was accusing me of being a bully after me telling him that I was still in a lot of mental pain over him hurting me like he did. I decided in that moment to unleash what it would be like if I did bully him. I warned him before I began. My upper lip curled in disgust as I rained down belittling insults that cut him to the core because I knew him front to back and inside out. Looking back, I was just telling the truth in a nasty tone with a few curse words thrown in. He curled up into a little ball and cried. That’s what it would be like if I was punishing him, if I didn’t hold back my anger, if I acted like him. It felt like shit too, like an nasty sticky greasy type of feeling. I didn’t like bullying him but part of me enjoyed giving him some of his own bullshit and to see him scared instead of me.
In that moment, he was so vulnerable and in pain himself. I stopped. I had no interest in pursuing this onslaught of verbal thrashing, I didn’t like how it felt. There seems to be moments in my life or have a chance to get vengeance or revenge on certain people who have hurt me. I have that moment and it’s right there in front of me. That’s when I stop. Its enough. Its enough to know I could have really hurt them back. Something tells me that this is just going to make things worse and not better. Being someone who knowingly hurts someone else without their consent is not who I am. It’s times like this that I look back on as proof that I am not a bad person despite when any rapist or rape apologists will say.
I think that being blamed for what happened to you is one of the most confusing and painful things about the whole experience. I was already hurt by someone who was supposed to take care of me, supposed to love me, supposed to care about my well-being. That is confusing enough and then on top of that is supposed to be my fault? This rings of bullshit more than anything that I can imagine. Another shitty thing is that you usually know the person that hurt you and sometimes you love them. I loved him, even though the part that I loved isn’t real. Real love doesn’t hurt you, blame you, expect you to not respect your own limits for their pleasure and satisfaction. Real love doesn’t want to cause you damage. He didn’t love me.
That is the stigma of the survivor of sexual abuse. System seems to be set up by rapist and abusers to cover their own asses by blaming the very people that they hurt. Society jumps on the bandwagon and makes things ultimately more difficult for survivors. Fuck society and fuck the opinions of cowards that don’t want to deal with the fact that this did happen and it does hurt. It’s okay no matter what feelings I’m having about it and it doesn’t make me a bad person because I’m not smiling 24 seven. It’s okay to be a human being with emotions, in fact, many emotions throughout the day. I don’t want to give up all my emotions. I now allow myself to feel and express whatever emotional things that I’m going through. Despite societies push to become an automated smile robot that consumes everything, I’m walking away. I’m not confused anymore.Society doesn’t scare me anymore wither.