Reasons You Shouldn’t Fuck Kids

Reason #286: Can She Hurt Us Now?

I was talking to my therapist about the babysitter, and how I think a lot of my general anxiety/phobia has to do with her.  Since I don’t have conscious memory of her, I am basing this on circumstantial evidence.  All my fears started after she babysat us, but before my brother ever touched me.

Lately, we have been drilling down through a bunch of shit to get to the real issue: the babysitter and her effects on me. I told the therapist that a part of me almost feels like I made a childhood pact with my brother to keep silent about everything, and that if I tell, I am breaking that pact.  It’s an odd thing, because he later became one of my abusers. But we were SO young when she fucked us, and it’s almost like surviving a war together.  In actual adult combat wars, soldiers call each other “battle buddies”.  I guess that’s what we were – battle buddies – before he became my next battle.

The therapist said that whether or not there was an actual pact, there was certainly an air of implicit silence.  Then I told her that I think we were both afraid she would hurt us in some way if we told.  (Truth be told, I am afraid even as I write this.) She reminded me that I am an adult, and no longer a child.

I looked at the therapist and said “Can she hurt us?”  The therapist said “How do you mean?”  I said, “I mean, now, can she hurt us?  Can she find us and hurt us?”

She said no. I said “How do you know?”  She said that the babysitter was only interested in fucking kids, she doesn’t want adults.  She reminded me again that I am an adult, and that I have the power.

I know that logically it doesn’t make sense to wonder if the babysitter could hurt us now. I understand that. But in all honesty, where is the logic in any of this?  It isn’t logical to fuck kids, but that happened to me.  It also isn’t logical for a brother to use a sister in a sexual way, or for a father to look at his daughter as a wife, but those things happened to me too.  So why should ‘logic’ be the dictating rule here?? Why should I be operating from a ‘logical’ standpoint when none of the originating actions were logical to begin with?

So who knows if she can hurt us now?  Why is that fear any less real than anything else?  The therapist said that when I think about her, I am using a child/adult dynamic with her, and that I revert to my young self.  I’m sure she is right about that.

Can she hurt us now?  I have no idea.  But it sure is scary to think about, and it makes it hard to think about telling too.

Reason 269: Thelma and Louise

Do you remember that movie Thelma and Louise? In the movie, this guy is trying to rape Thelma, and Louise kills him before he can finish. Before she kills him though, the rapist defends himself by saying “We were just having some fun.” Louise, a rape survivor herself, said, “Just so you know, when women are crying and screaming like that, they aren’t having any fun.”

I woke up today thinking about that movie. When that babysitter was molesting us, I wonder if we cried and screamed. Probably not, judging by my behavior with my brother while he was molesting me. I probably dissociated and left my body and pretended I was somewhere else, like I did with my brother.

This happens to me so often. I HATE not having conscious memory of her, of what she did to us. I wouldn’t hate it but for the fact that all my symptoms of surviving molestation appeared after she molested us, which was years BEFORE my brother ever touched me. So, obviously the memories are stuck somewhere in my subconscious, unable to be accessed by the rest of me. And so I am left to drive myself crazy with the wonderings of what she actually did, how she went about hurting us, how long she waited after my mom left, how we reacted, etc.

Reason #265: “Regressing to infantile behaviors”

Yesterday, I came across this list of behavioral symptoms that a child has been molested.  I had tears in my eyes as I realized that I had almost all of them.  I was showing all these fucking signs, and yet no one around me seemed to understand that such changes in my behavior meant that something bad had happened to me and I was reacting to it.

Anyway, my eyes rested on this entry in the list: “Regression to more infantile behavior such as thumb sucking or excessive crying.”

I sucked my two middle fingers until I was 13.  I tried not to do it in front of people, because even I understood that I should have been able to stop this behavior by that age.  I cannot explain why I did it, or why I even liked doing it.  But I did it, and apparently since it’s on a list of common behavioral responses to being molested, lots of other fucked kids are doing it too.  This is why you shouldn’t fuck kids. We suck our fingers to make ourselves feel better, and cry excessively and pee our beds.

Reason #259: Survivor Sleep, again

I am still sick, in pain, nauseated, etc.  The surgeon still needs to remove my gall bladder, which will necessitate a further hospital trip, which is scaring the shit out of me.  I pretty much lay awake thinking about it, and worried that he won’t get it in time.  He refuses to touch me until the pancreatitis heals.  In the meantime, I am scared that another stone will slip into the duct and the whole thing will start all over again.

It is hard to get on the computer due to the pain levels and most of the time it is all I can do to sit there and just be alive.  I am having a stronger moment right now so I decided to get on the computer and visit with you, my blog friends. 

Today is four weeks since I entered the hospital; four weeks of new trauma to work on, compounding the old trauma.  Four weeks of sleeping fitfully, especially since I got home from the hospital.  I am scared of going to sleep.  Laying there awake at night is an exercise in fear. Actually, all of this has been an exercise in fear, frankly. 

I was thinking last night about this physical/emotional trauma, and its similarities/differences to when I was a kid, getting molested by a babysitter, and then a brother, and then a father.  As an adult, the nurses were horrific to me in the hospital, and their lack of empathy absolutely worsened my condition.  As a child, no one even knew what was happening to me, but I knew.  I guess they couldn’t be empathetic if they didn’t know what was wrong in the first place.  I guess. 

When I told my aunt what my brother did to me – I was still a child when I told her – she asked me what his penis looked like.  I guess that was her way of seeing if I was telling the truth.  I told her it looked like an egg roll, which is what it looked like to me.  My brother is uncircumsized, and I hate that I know that through firsthand knowledge.

In the hospital, the nurses were assessing my pain level constantly, trying to see if I was truly in enough pain to warrant medicine to stop the pain.  They, too, were trying to see if I was telling the truth.  Are we just a world that thinks that everyone is a fucking liar? 

When I said that he was hurting me, I wish you would have said “My G-d, what happened to you was wrong, and it wasn’t your fault.  I’m sorry I wasn’t there to protect you.  But I will be now, and I won’t let anyone hurt you again.  I will help you heal.”

To my mother’s credit, the minute I told her about the abuse with my brother, it stopped and never came back.  She believed me from the first second I uttered the words.  Thank G-d.  I guess the damage was already done.  My brother and I both had fitful sleep and nightmares and bedwetting and all the other signs of abuse after that babysitter came into our life.

I am 37, and I lay in bed awake and afraid every night.  Most nights I just keep escaping through tv shows until I am so tired I can’t keep my eyes open anymore.  But as soon as I get in bed, I am AWAKE, you know?

I dread the night. I hate survivor sleep.

Reason #257: It Takes Time to Learn My Power

Another ant appeared in our hallway.  I was immediately afraid, and then I remembered that I have power over the ant.  I remembered what the therapist said about how from now on I will always think about ants differently.  I want that to be true so badly that I keep reminding myself that she said that about me.  I keep telling myself that if I find an ant in my room, or if one crawls on me while I sleep (G-d forbid), I will just kill it. 

I fell asleep and within an hour, I woke up in a panic.  I thought an ant was on my bed.  I breathed heavy, checked my surroundings, and calmed down.  I reminded myself of my power.  There was no ant on my bed; it was my own panic manifesting itself in the middle of the night.  Middle of the night stuff is one of the hard parts of surviving child sexual abuse.

Fear is a learned thing, just like hatred.  Babies aren’t born fearing the ants.  Babies aren’t born with hatred in their heart.  Those things have to be taught to them.

I was thinking last night about a time when I was five years old.  I remember PLAYING with the ants.  Playing with them.  Can you believe that?  There was a time when I was so unafraid of bugs that I played with them.  I wasn’t afraid of them and I didn’t have to learn to have power over them.  I played with them.

That was my life before the babysitter.  After she did those things to my brother and I, we were both afraid of the world around us, of the dark, of being alone.  We both had trouble sleeping after that, and we were both afraid of being anywhere our mom was not.

It’s been over 30 years since she hurt my brother and I.  We’ve both had suicidality, panic disorder, been in gay relationships when neither of us identify ourselves as gay, and we both are afraid of intimacy.  And I entered into a marriage (that ultimately failed) with someone because he never pushed me about sex.

And I am afraid of ants.  But I am learning to have courage in the face of this fear.  I am learning about my own power in this situation, and I am learning to use it.  It is taking me some time to learn my power in this situation.  That is why you shouldn’t fuck kids. Because if I hadn’t experienced powerlessness in a terrible situation, maybe I would still be playing with the ants instead of using great courage in plotting to kill them.

Reason #255: The Opportunity to be Courageous

For some reason, I have been watching that movie “Evan Almighty” over and over again in the last few months.  The movie is a re-telling of the story of Noah and the Ark. My life is in such a state of upheaval, and I think the idea of G-d telling someone directly to do something, and him doing this enormous thing even though everyone thinks he’s nuts is very appealing to me.  In the movie, G-d says to Noah’s wife: “When someone prays for courage, does G-d give them courage, or does He give them the opportunity to be courageous?”

As you know, an ant has plagued me for a whole year, and a few weeks ago I took my power back from that fucking ant.  I made the decision that even if there were live ants in my room, I was going to sleep in my own bed and that fucking ant was not going to stop me!  I told my therapist about my courage with the ant.  I asked her if this courage was temporary or if the ant would scare me again.  She told me that now that I have found my power and courage with the ant, that I would always look at ants differently from here on out.  I changed my thought process from “This ant will touch me without my permission” to “It is an ant.  If it crawls on me, I will kill it.”  

G-d gave me the opportunity to be courageous.  It took me a year of fear, terrible pain, and the loss of my marriage to act on it, but I finally did.  To other people who hear that an ant took a year of my life, they would probably think I am fucking nuts.  Maybe I am fucking nuts, who knows. 

The therapist says it was never about the ant, it was about what the ant represented.  The ant represented touching me without my permission; touching me by surprise, without my permission. 

I feel like the fact that I have changed my thought process from “I am afraid the ant will touch me without my permission” to “It’s an ant.  If it crawls on me, I will kill it” means that I have given my answer to the permission question.  The answer is no.  The answer has always been no.  You may not touch me without my permission.  It’s my body.  Mine.  Not yours.  I say no.  I get to say no.  I have said NO. No.

I understand that at less than five years old I didn’t have that power over that babysitter.  I didn’t have the power of No, but I have it now with the ant, and I am using it.

Reason #247: Changing my Mantra

I keep catching myself thinking “I wish I were dead”.  Generally, this thought happens when I am faced with other thoughts about my present situation.  Like when I think about my husband turning into a woman.  Or when I think about my upcoming move into the guest bedroom.  (Mom and I spent the last week putting new wallpaper up in that bedroom, so that I won’t be as depressed when I move in there.) Or when I think about checking under the bed and in the closet of my new bedroom, every night.  Or when I think about waking up in the middle of the night, scared and alone in my new room, like I used to in every room I have lived in before I met my husband, ever since that babysitter showed my brother and I that evil exists in the world.

The thing is, I am not suicidal.  I used to be suicidal, and I feel that this thought – the “I wish I were dead” thought – is not accurate.  It’s almost disingenous, and in a way, I feel it is disrespectful to the me I used to be, the one who wished for death so badly that when I was asked by my best friend what I wanted for my 21st birthday, I said “Death.”

I don’t wish I were dead right now.  So I thought long and hard about what it is that I really want when I think that horrible thought.  I think what I am really seeking is an end to this terrible pain.

This past weekend, my mom was talking about the kind of torment my husband must have suffered all his life, trying to live in a body that wasn’t genuine to who he really is.  He is really a she inside, and having to push that down constantly, and keep that sort of a secret (even from himself) all these years must have been torture.  My mom was contemplating his pain, and then she thought about my sex abuse, and she said “Of course, it’s not trauma though.  You’ve been traumatized.”

I do that too.  I keep comparing my current terrible pain – heartbreak, betrayal, sadness over my failed marriage – to my other terrible pain – experiencing and surviving childhood sexual abuse.  I really shouldn’t compare pains, I suppose, since all pain is real. But maybe it is natural to compare pain, to seek some sort of level for all this, to try and make it familiar?  If Mom is doing it, and I am doing it, maybe everyone is doing it?  Who knows. 

When I find myself thinking “I wish I were dead”, I try to immediately stop that thought where it is, and change it to “I wish this pain would end.”

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