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Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:40 PM

About girls and women not telling after they're attacked

When I was 15 years old, I went into Columbus to shop on a day we didn't have school. My mom was a secretary for a small insurance company and worked on the 12th. floor of a building housing multiple businesses.

As I was coming back to her office. I stepped into the elevator with a single man. He was probably 40 and dressed in jeans. As the elevator began its climb, he came up behind me and dropped to his knees. He placed one of his hands on each side of my leg and started up under my dress (this was the early "60s). I did not say a word. I shoved him off balance as my hand searched for the elevator buttons. Some how I hit like floor 7 and the doors suddenly opened. I tore out, but didn't even try to enter an office where help might have been. I ran around the corner and started down the stairs. He followed. I was faster and made it to the ground floor. Again, there were people everywhere, but I went out the door and ran up the busy street. He followed me for about two blocks before giving up and turning around.

I never told my parents nor sister nor best friend. I told no one until I told my husband about it 7 years later.

Why? I was ashamed that I tempted a man at age 15? I was ashamed some complete stranger had touched me? I don't know. My mother passed away in 2015 at 96. I'm now 70 and I never told her.

43 replies, 3808 views

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Arrow 43 replies Author Time Post
Reply About girls and women not telling after they're attacked (Original post)
sinkingfeeling Sep 2018 OP
mcar Sep 2018 #1
madaboutharry Sep 2018 #2
Maraya1969 Sep 2018 #3
GitRDun Sep 2018 #4
mythology Sep 2018 #21
Tardislass Sep 2018 #5
Loryn Sep 2018 #6
Haggis for Breakfast Sep 2018 #16
meadowlander Sep 2018 #7
dawg day Sep 2018 #14
OMGWTF Sep 2018 #17
MaryMagdaline Sep 2018 #20
Zing Zing Zingbah Sep 2018 #38
AnotherMother4Peace Sep 2018 #8
KT2000 Sep 2018 #9
Ohiogal Sep 2018 #10
secondwind Sep 2018 #11
MaryMagdaline Sep 2018 #12
AnotherMother4Peace Sep 2018 #18
MaryMagdaline Sep 2018 #19
AnotherMother4Peace Sep 2018 #22
malaise Sep 2018 #13
Solly Mack Sep 2018 #15
mommymarine2003 Sep 2018 #23
renate Sep 2018 #30
pnwmom Sep 2018 #35
TrogL Sep 2018 #24
MaryMagdaline Sep 2018 #26
MaryMagdaline Sep 2018 #27
Duppers Sep 2018 #25
LibDemAlways Sep 2018 #33
Liberty Belle Sep 2018 #28
SoCalDem Sep 2018 #36
Cracklin Charlie Sep 2018 #29
Doreen Sep 2018 #31
LibDemAlways Sep 2018 #32
Blaukraut Sep 2018 #34
whathehell Sep 2018 #37
Adrahil Sep 2018 #39
honeylady Sep 2018 #40
MineralMan Sep 2018 #42
honeylady Sep 2018 #43
MineralMan Sep 2018 #41

Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:43 PM

1. Blessings on you, sinkingfeeling



You reacted as so many women have, for good reason.

Here's the real question: WTF is wrong with these me (#notallmen) who think this is OK? Even now, for sweet Jesus' sake.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:45 PM

2. I'm sorry that happened to you.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:52 PM

3. I know why. I'm so sorry it happened to you too. There is an embarrassment and shame

are so real even though we didn't do anything wrong.

It happens too damn much.



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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:52 PM

4. I'll start with I'm a guy.

This is it plain and simple for me..no one has any right to judge how someone reacts to the sexual violations you describe, or any others.

These are deeply personal intrusions..

As these violations come forward, you do the best you can to sort out what happened.

Speaking for myself, absent facts that show some other motive, my inclination is to believe the victims.

The humiliation of reliving these events of violation has to be horrendous. People don't just make this stuff up for no reason.

It seems to me that unless you can show some definitive motive to lie, the default goes to the victim.

I'm sorry for what happened to you.

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Response to GitRDun (Reply #4)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:57 PM

21. Cosigned

 

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:53 PM

5. Don't worry. I was molested riding alone on a city bus back in the late 1970s

 

I was 10 and riding back from the library to my house. Back then it wasn't unusual for parents to let their kids go alone as long as they knew where they were going. Anyway, an old man got on and sat down beside me. He asked me about my book and as I proceeded to show him he put his hand between my legs and started rubbing while whispering what a cute girl I was and this was him showing love. I was so shocked I couldn't move but then got up and moved to another seat. I never told anyone what happened though I can't remember the bus line or when exactly it happened I remember his face what he said and what it felt like.

The worst thing was that there were people sitting across from him that saw what he was doing and said nothing! For years I felt it was my fault because I didn't scream or make a fuss. I always wonder how many other kids he molested as he seemed to have no qualms about doing it in a public place. And yes, it feels weird I was ashamed but back then it was still thought that girls somehow asked for it.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 06:55 PM

6. You are not alone.

How awful to be ashamed because of another person's actions.

There was no information on this behavior then, and as a result we carry shame for years.

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Response to Loryn (Reply #6)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:43 PM

16. No, you are NOT alone.

There are a lot of women who are reading this right now and nodding. And crying.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:02 PM

7. When I was 12 a stranger tried to get me in a car.

I never told my parents because:

A) i thought they would tell me off for taking a shortcut home instead of the preapproved route ona busier street
B) I didnít want to worry them
C) I didnít want to have my walking privileges revoked.

15 is a kid and kids have bad judgement about the bigger picture. She may have been scared to admit she went to a party where boys were drinking. That doesnít make what happened to her any less of a crime and sometimes it can take years to understand what really happened and how a fully rational grown up would respond.

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Response to meadowlander (Reply #7)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:49 PM

14. Me too-- I was afraid my parents would react by somehow punishing me

It's not like they would have been able to track down this person.
But I definitely thought I'd get into trouble if they knew.

And let's face it. Back then-- even now-- telling doesn't necessarily result in any real action. Think of all those gymnasts, and how many of them complained about Nasser...

And the wrestlers at OSU who told Jim Jordan that the doctor was molesting them.

Nothing happens. That's almost worse than not telling at all.

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Response to dawg day (Reply #14)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:46 PM

17. Me too

I was raped at 13 and never told my uber-Catholic parents because I knew I'd be punished.

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Response to OMGWTF (Reply #17)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:57 PM

20. F*** I am so angry for you.

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Response to meadowlander (Reply #7)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 09:14 AM

38. Reminds me of a similar situation that happened to me at the same age

except I think the situation I was involved in was really quite innocent. I was shoveling snow in front of my house and a man stopped by and asked me if I wanted to go have coffee with him. Just a random stranger. It was weird, but I don't think the guy meant any harm by it. I told him no and that I was 12 years old. I think that made him feel really weird too and he got in his car and drove off. I looked virtually the same at 12 as I do now and I'm almost 40. I can see how a man could have thought I was adult back then. Unfortunately, girls do mature sooner than boys, so many look like women when they are still underage.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:06 PM

8. No, we don't tell because it's an ugly disgusting thing that happened to us. Hell, I can barely

think about what happened to me, much less talk about it. My mom had a hell of a lot on her plate, and we kids helped our big family function. We didn't make it more difficult. And this would have made it very difficult since it was a family member. And we didn't talk about sex, we just didn't - very Catholic. Lots of reasons why we don't tell. I was violated - people would see me in those terms and what was done to me - mind you I was a child, a horrified child. Not to mention, the threats, who would be believed, etc. No I never told.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:11 PM

9. I believe most don't tell

I didn't but it was a different time. There was judgment then - of the women, not the men. Help to put yourself back together - unheard of. Lots of - you asked for it - for everything from clothes, location, and anything else.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:12 PM

10. Dear sinkingfeeling,

I am so sorry that happened to you. It's so totally frightening and shameful to experience something like that at such a young age. Please know that you're not alone. It's absolutely shameful that men (and boys) think they can do these things to us.

When I was 12, I used to cut through the dark school auditorium after the dismissal bell rang because it was much faster to get to my locker that way. You weren't supposed to do that but I knew some kids did. One day as I got to the door across the big auditorium, four big boys came in and saw me there. One of them pinned me up against the wall and kept asking me my name. I could feel and smell his breath on my face. It was dark and I couldn't see any of their faces. Another boy bent down and reached up under my skirt and was touching me there through my underpants. The first one kept trying to kiss me (UGH) but I kept wiggling out of his grasp. They finally let me go, and I tore through the door as they all laughed loudly at me.

I told no one out of shame and fear. Especially my mother, because I was afraid she'd march right down to the school the next day and make a big deal out of it and then I'd really be afraid to go to school for fear those boys would retaliate. (I guess I didn't put 2 and 2 together that if I couldn't identify them how could I tell anyone who did it?) But I felt awful and shamed and embarrassed and dirty for a long long time, and I STILL remember how that felt. I can't imagine going through what you and others went through like Dr. Ford, which was ten times worse. These old turds like Orrin Hatch have NO idea how it feels - no, we aren't "hysterical mixed up ninnies" or anything like that. It is REAL and it HAPPENED to us and there are a thousand reasons why we don't speak up about it that they will never understand.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:21 PM

11. You are the same as all of us, we remember

ever detail. Even 55 years later. You are not alone. Most girls/women go through something. And women NEVER FORGET

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:31 PM

12. Never told

Saw/experienced bad stuff as a child and told no one. My parents would be upset and hurt. Telling them would make it real. Telling friends would start a whole lot of ďwhat you should have done was x.Ē

Get to safety and keep quiet. Donít start anything. Ages 11 and 12.

Seeing evil and reliving it was something I did not want to do.

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Response to MaryMagdaline (Reply #12)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:52 PM

18. Oh MM - you & me except I was 5-6: "Get to safety and keep quiet. Don't start anything"

"Seeing evil and reliving it was something I did not want to do" - so damn true. This is most I've talked about it. I must be getting brave. I'm so glad you would understand me. I understand you.

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Response to AnotherMother4Peace (Reply #18)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 08:55 PM

19. 5 to 6 breaks my heart. I am so sorry

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Response to MaryMagdaline (Reply #19)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:04 PM

22. Yeah-pretty f**ked up stuff & when I hear Hatch saying: "She's mixed up"-I feel threatened again

I got very angry when I heard Hatch say that dismissively "She's mixed up" - Holy crap she was sexually assaulted, and feared for her life. "She's mixed up" - how dare he - still pisses me off.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:36 PM

13. Horrific

I know lots of women who were sexually assaulted. Too many attempted rapists walk free.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 07:53 PM

15. ...

Lot of reason why we don't tell.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:20 PM

23. My daughter was molested.

She was 12 years old at the time. She was molested by our minister when she was at church youth group. There was a private room behind the pipe organ at the church, and he would take her there while his assistant would handle the other kids attending youth group. My husband and I did not find out about this until she was 22 and newly married. Her new husband told us. We knew something was wrong with our daughter, as her whole personality had changed. Looking back through the years when this was occurring, she had told me how uncomfortable she was babysitting his children and that his children seemed abnormally fascinated with sex (showed her where their dad's condoms were, wanted to touch her, etc).

You can't imagine how horrible we feel that we did not protect her from this man. We thought she was in a safe place - at church. Our daughter did see a sexual assault counselor once we knew, but so much damage had been done to her psyche; and we almost lost her in 2006. I have followed where this minister has gone throughout the years. I am more than willing to go to court, although the statute of limitations ended years ago. She would have to be ready to take on him and the church, and I don't think she could handle that.

Our 12-year-old daughter didn't know how to tell us even though we had a great relationship. She held it to herself all those years until it almost destroyed her. I hope that Dr. Ford gets some justice, even if Kavanaugh can't go to jail.

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Response to mommymarine2003 (Reply #23)

Tue Sep 18, 2018, 06:08 PM

30. something similar happened to me and my sister

I haven't talked about this to anybody except my husband and my parents. But your story and hers made me so sad for you. So here goes.

We were four and six. My parents were on sabbatical in France and through friends had met a doctor and his wife. His wife was very sweet and I have to assume she had no idea about him. They had two kids. They all got to know each other and it was arranged (I have no idea whether it was him--creepy--or his wife--kind--who made the suggestion) that my sister and I would stay with them while my parents had a week away so they could see a bit of Europe on their own.

While my sister and I were supposedly asleep, he molested us, every night. With our parents out of the country and, in those days, pretty much completely out of touch--certainly my sister and I couldn't have contacted them. We were absolutely isolated from our parents for that entire week. He did it again when we spent the night at their house at a New Year's Eve party, with my parents downstairs. To this day I haven't even talked about this with my sister, even though we're close... I don't know whether she remembers and if she doesn't I don't want to risk reminding her. And I've only talked about it a little bit with my parents. I certainly didn't do so at the time; it took nine or ten years, even though, like you, we had and have a great relationship.

I just wanted you to know that I do not blame my parents in any way. NONE. And I never did, not the littlest bit. It's like with that minister--this was a doctor, vouched for by mutual friends, with kids and a sweet wife. It must have seemed absolutely safe. When I read your sentence "You can't imagine how horrible we feel that we did not protect her from this man," I felt so sad for you, and just wanted you to know that I was in a similar position to your daughter's, and it never crossed my mind to blame them. I'm sure, now that I'm a parent too, that they do feel bad about it (it's why I've only talked with them about it a couple of times; I don't want them to feel that way), but I wish they wouldn't. And actually, I think they probably feel more anger than guilt, which makes a lot more sense. The blame is 100% on the perpetrator.

Has your daughter talked to anybody at RAINN? I'm so sorry, so very sorry, for the lasting effects on her.

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Response to mommymarine2003 (Reply #23)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 02:10 AM

35. I am so very sorry, mommymarine2003.

Both for your daughter and how helpless this might make you feel.

One suggestion, though. It is possible the statute of limitations has not yet passed, because some states have extended or even eliminated them for crimes like this that occur in childhood.

Here is a guide to all 50 states. After you find your state, you can click the state link to learn the details. It appears that many states have no time limits for sexual offenses against children.

https://www.rainn.org/state-state-guide-statutes-limitations

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:31 PM

24. It happens to guys too

When I as 13 we were on vacation in England. We had just arrived in Dover by ferry. I sat with the luggage while my parents went off to find a hotel. While I was sitting there a man came up, started admiring the fabric of my pants then started rubbing my leg. I pushed him off then lost time due to dissociation.

A psychologist retrieved the memory decades later.

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Response to TrogL (Reply #24)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:47 PM

26. My brother was assaulted

Used to hitchhike in the 70ís. Older man grabbed him. He jumped out of the car at a stop light. We all gathered together to build my brothers potential defense, thinking he might get in trouble because he slammed the door on the man and thinks the manís hand was hurt. AS IF THE PERV WAS GOING TO CALL POLICE. Glad he told his girlfriend and us right away. She was younger and still smarter than all of us. Handled his emotions very well.

Bosses at my law firm all told me once they had all been assaulted or had experienced attempted assaults as boys. Big eye opener to me, even after knowing about my brother.

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Response to TrogL (Reply #24)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:49 PM

27. I'm sorry. I should have said that at the outset before telling my brother's story

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:39 PM

25. We were raised in an era of horrible misogyny.

Last edited Wed Sep 19, 2018, 06:52 AM - Edit history (1)

It's bad now but was much worse then. My devoutly religious mother blamed every woman in every bad scenario involving a man. She never showed one bit of empathy or sympathy toward any woman, so I knew she'd never believe me. So much happened and I just carried tons of shame around with me many decades. I have told 2 people, both shrinks, both men, whom I trusted. It helped in a strange way to just have my truth out.

I'm now 72 and my 93yo mother is in a nursing home. She'll go to her death without ever understanding people. There's a tremendous emotional distance between us. I'm so grateful that such distance doesn't exist between my 31yo son and myself - he knows I can understand varied human interactions. And I'm so proud that he advocates for women's rights.


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Response to Duppers (Reply #25)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 12:40 AM

33. My mother is 95 and to this day

she also places the blame squarely on women when something untoward happens involving a man. She routinely makes negative comments about women wearing clothing she deems inappropriate --short skirts, tight pants, low cut blouses are all "disgusting." She's of the "she asked for it" generation, and nothing will ever convince her otherwise. Hopefully, that generation is the last that will be so rigidly judgmental.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 09:58 PM

28. I was nearly date raped, and kept quiet.

I never told anyone because I felt stupid for being duped into going to a guy's apt. after a first date. He said he wanted to return a book he'd borrowed and forgot to bring; it was a book I needed for class.

Next thing I knew he was all over me and wouldn't stop; he had me pinned down on the sofa. I thought he was going to rape me. I convinced him I had to use the bathroom. I went in there, flushed the toilet 4 or 5 times, put some creamy green eyeshadow on my tongue, came out and told him I had come down with the flu or maybe food poisoning....then acted like I was about to puke again.

He couldn't wait to drive me home and after that I used better judgment.

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Response to Liberty Belle (Reply #28)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 02:35 AM

36. You reminded me of my cousin's unique tactic

She was a very pretty 16 yr old who often had to ride the bus (Miami FL..no car)

There were usually pervy guys who would ogle her..

If one was making a move on her, she would PICK HER NOSE !!!

or if the spirit moved her..FART !!

She was a bold young girl ..

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2018, 10:06 PM

29. How terrifying.

So glad youíre okay.

I was lucky...something my brother told me popped into my head when my attacker came at me, and I left that gross guy in a heap by the hot water heater.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Tue Sep 18, 2018, 09:50 PM

31. I have experienced sexual abuse all of my life.

Psychologists came to the conclusion that I had been getting sexually abused not to long after I was born. Thankfully, I do not remember the first 3 and a half years. I think in some way I was programed for my future abuse. Even though I felt something was wrong I still felt responsible for my abuse later in life. Even though my mother caught my father molesting me and immediately turned him in and assured me it was not my fault and put me into therapy I still did not turn in the 3 men who tried to rape me. I felt that having been through therapy I should have known better than to get myself into those situations despite the fact that I knew it was not my fault. Society does such an outstanding job of placing the responsibility on the female ( despite the age ) for any sexual abuse they may receive. Men and boys are told by society that they are weak and not real men or will ever become real men when abuse happens to them and that is equally as disgusting as what they do to women.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)


Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 01:06 AM

34. My assault happened at Madame Tussaud's Chamber of Horrors

I know. Ironic. I was 14, in England as an exchange student. I remember it like it was yesterday. We were shuffling along in a line, past the exhibits that were behind glass. Right in front of the one with the bathtub murder (I forgot the name of the infamous murderer) something that felt like an umbrella handle was poking me in the butt. I tried to move out of the way but it kept going on, so I turned around to ask the person to please stop. But when I looked down, I saw that what had poked me wasn't an umbrella handle at all but an erect penis.
I was so shocked that I couldn't move at first. By the time I alerted my host parents, the guy had long since packed away his thing and moved off. I did get a pretty good look at his face and his penis (and I still have that horrible picture in my mind, almost 40 years later), even though it was fairly dark in the chamber, but the security guards never found him. Not surprising, to be honest. The creep knew exactly what he was doing and that there was little chance he'd get caught.

What made me regret later that I ever said anything was that both my host parents and the security guards implied that I was imagining things, or even making the whole thing up.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 07:59 AM

37. Why? First, discussing sexual experiences of any kind, with parents is uncomfortable

uncomfortable for most, & especially for teens, and most especially so in the early '60s. I'm close to your age and can attest to it.

I had a similar, if less threatening, experience in the middle Sixties.

It was the summer of '66 and I was 16 years old, walking with a friend down the street in the early evening. A man about 30. dressed in a business suit, passed us and made a brief, obscene comment to me. I was shocked and scared and never told anyone, let alone my parents -- Your reaction, at that age and in that era especially, was totally understandable. Don't ever doubt it.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 09:27 AM

39. I'm a man, and I was sexually assaulted as a child. I told no one.

 

I was ashamed. Confused. Convinced that I had done bad things. The man that did went on to become a local business leader.

I didn't tell anyone until I was in my late 30's.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 03:37 PM

40. Here's my story

When I was 15, my best friend and her brother kenney lived 2 houses up the street. I had stars in my eyes for this very cute brother of my friend. One day he said to meet him in his room. I was very naive and didn't understand sex at all. I'm now 69, so things were different back then. I said okay and went into his room. He walks in with an erection and a towel draped over it. I was so naive I couldn't understand how he could hide such a thing in his pants. He then proceeded to attempt to rape me. I fought him off and fled the house. I did not tell anyone what he had done.

A couple of weeks later, I was at their house visiting my friend when he beat the crap out of me. I ran home and again didn't tell anyone what happened. I was so ashamed.

A week or so later, we were on the school bus going to school. He sees me sitting in the seat. Proceeds to pick me up and throw me on the floor. I was mad and told the principal that he threw me on the floor. That day we get off the school bus and he then proceeds to beat me right in front of all the kids on the bus and the bus driver. I was bloody and crying and ran home. My mother was there and demanded to know what happened. i told her. Well she was furious and went to his parents and said if he ever touched me again, she would call the police.

Well he never did. He just destroyed my reputation at school. I forgot to mention that he was the most popular boy in school and the captain of the football team. So I lost all of my friends and was forced to leave that school and go to another one.

This whole Brett Kavanaugh thing has brought up all of this for me. If he was in the same position as Brett K. is, I would absolutely feel that I would need to let my Senator know what he did. But I would never give my name publicly as I was a bit of a wild child in my 20's and would be afraid of my character totally destroyed.

I understand why women don't come forward with these things, especially when they are young like I was.

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Response to honeylady (Reply #40)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 04:20 PM

42. I'm so sorry that happened to you.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #42)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 06:15 PM

43. Thank you Mineral Man. It is appreciated n/t

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Original post)

Wed Sep 19, 2018, 03:56 PM

41. I had a friend in college, when I was just 19 years old.

We used to sit around in the common room at the dorm and talk. For one reason or another, we were never in any kind of romantic relationship. One day, she told me that her stepfather had molested her for several years, beginning at age 12. I listened. She let it all come out. She told me later that she had never told anyone about that before.

We remained friends for years. We never did develop anything other than a friendly relationship, but she always talked to me about issues related to that sexual abuse. I listened. Perhaps that was the role I was meant to play with that person.

Eventually, she married a Methodist minister and I lost touch with her. Last year, I did a Google search for her, and discovered that she had died a couple of years earlier.

I hope my listening helped her deal with what had happened. I don't know. I was glad she felt she could trust me with her story, though.

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