Every survivor of childhood sexual abuse has a different story. Every person deals with it differently, and everyone finds healing in their own way. This blog is about a survivor, but not just one survivor. This is a combination of stories from several survivors of childhood sexual abuse. These feelings and experiences are common among survivors. If you’ve faced any of the feelings described in this blog, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
Some things happened to me when I was a kid. Things that I didn’t understand – I still don’t always understand them, to be honest. I won’t go into detail, but someone who was supposed to love me and protect me, didn’t. I was sexually abused. And it went on for a long time.
For years, I imagined that it had no effect on me at all. I was fine. I was normal. Nothing going on here. Except there was, always under the surface, that guilt and shame and doubt. I just refused to deal with it. You know how some people have this big lightning bolt moment that leads them to enlightenment? I didn’t have one of those. Instead I spent years of my life feeling like I was broken, but refusing to look at why I felt that way.
That’s how it seemed to me, anyway. It felt like I was always sabotaging myself. Something good would happen, and I found a way to ruin it. I’d meet a really great person that I wanted to date and then something would happen, and I’d be running from them as fast as I could (figuratively speaking). I’d get a new responsibility at work, and it was like I’d go out of my way to prove that I didn’t deserve it. As the saying goes, I was my own worst enemy.
Why was I doing this to myself?
One Saturday morning I was laying in my bed and watching the sunlight making shapes on my ceiling. It was so beautiful. I started to cry. I couldn’t remember the last time I had thought anything was beautiful. I couldn’t remember the last time I was happy. I didn’t even know if I remembered how to be happy.
I cried. And I cried. And I cried. I didn’t want to stop because it was the first time in a long time that I was feeling something. I didn’t even care that it was pain and sorrow, it was something!
I’d like to tell you that Saturday morning changed everything. It didn’t. But, in a way, it did. Because it forced me to look at my life and what I was doing and how I was doing it. I was broken, but surely there was a way to repair me. There had to be. I was lost, but someone must know how I could find myself again. There had to be something more for me.
Healing from the impact of sexual abuse is a journey. For more information about how you can find healing, please refer to Reclaim Hope, a free e-book available on our resources page. Also, you can read more about the journey of survivors at: I Am Talking, Writing, and Healing and I Will Hope, Laugh, and Share.