WARNING: Discussion of sexual abuse, pornography, and grooming. Also ambivalence regarding such. Triggery stuff for some.
I think i know this face. As soon as i saw it, i felt like my entire body was singing with electricity. There is a back story to this and i’ll try to tell what i can.
My mother fell in love (or whatever approximated love for her) with a married man. I remember him coming to the house and they would go to her room while i was watching telly. I knew, based on my already long history of abuse, that they were having sex, but my dissociative nature was just as well established, and so i didn’t mark it or think about it at all. After a time of him visiting us regularly, i found myself calling him “Daddy”, and he would talk to me before he retired (/s) to my mom’s bedroom. He started bringing me presents, too. Most often it was candy or chocolate, but he brought the occasional stuffie, too.
The day eventually came when they brought me back to my mother’s bedroom with them. Details aren’t necessary or helpful, but it’s important to state that things escalated exponentially from there. He drew my mother and i into a world of drugs and sexual abuse. I don’t know how she met him, but my guess is that it happened through her contacts with people she was selling/renting me to. A lot of this is guess work, so i might very well be wrong – this is just me trying to piece together my memories and make some sense from them. I guess that she loved him, because i never in my life witnessed anyone else being able to tell her what to do, or wield any sort of power over her. I have very clear memories of Daddy yelling at her, and her crying and begging his forgiveness. He forbade her from prostituting me to anyone. From what i recall, it would seem he’d already told her that, but she’d continued and he’d found out.
I just went from being used by her contacts to his.
He and my mother attended the same church. It was some weird, non-Christian religion that i won’t name. She told me i wasn’t allowed to talk to him at church, EVER, and there was an unnaturally sophisticated part of me that understood why. He sat with a woman, and 2 boys and 1 girl. I knew that was his wife and children. I’d heard her phone calls at night where she’d sob and shriek and beg at him.
I share this because i (sort of?) recognise the face of the man in my nightmare sending me chat requests. He looks younger than the man i called Daddy, and older than his oldest son. His oldest son started talking to me after services, when everyone went down to the basement for cake and coffee. He was older than me by a significant margin, but i don’t know how much. He was definitely at the tail end of puberty, and i was 5 or 6. I would always sit in a chair by the stairs that led back up to the main floor (to this day i always need to be near/facing the quickest means of exit), eating cake and drinking Tang or Kool-Aid. He started by bringing me a second piece of cake.
It was a savvy move, although i can’t be sure that he’d thought things out that craftily. I was starved on the regular, but i also knew if i ate more than 1 piece of cake that my mother would beat me when we got home. I only ever took 1 piece of cake/sweet bread/muffin/whatever after services. He’d sidle up to me with 2 or 3 on a napkin, exclaim he took too much, and hand me 1 of them without even asking. I thought he was handsome and smart and funny. He made me laugh and said i was a “cutie-pie.” He was my first crush. Well, maybe my second, because i was head-over-heels in love with my mother’s brother. It was utterly guileless and sweet and without any thought of kissing or boyfriend-girlfriend stuff… But yeah, that sort of lovely naive adoration.
My uncle never did anything even remotely untoward. My “Daddy’s” oldest son started in on me within weeks of bringing me cake. The grownups would be chatting animatedly at long, wooden tables, all of them with styrofoam cups of coffee, and snatching treats off of fancy plates, laid down the middle. He said he wanted to “show me something.” It was pornography, of course. We would sit in 1 of the back rooms where they held Sunday school, and he would flip through pornographic magazines and make light commentary while doing so.
“What do you think of this?”
“Wow, hahaha, look at THAT!”
And i, as the multiple that i was, would play along the way i thought he wanted me to. Affecting a precociousness borne of being raped since before i could speak.
I don’t know if he knew of his father’s relationship with my mother. I don’t know if he was consciously grooming me. What i know is that i dissociated from sex and abuse and any mixture of the 2 – so all i knew was that this handsome boy was paying attention to me and saying nice things. He made me feel like a princess. My sexuality had already been awakened too early, so it’s not shocking that he made me blush and made my girl parts swell and tingle.
He began molesting me within weeks, and i liked it. I wanted him to.
This is what sexual abuse did to me. I’d already been groomed for him, by so many others. He barely had to smile at me. One piece of cake and i was his.
I won’t be detailing how far it went or describing the things he did. This blog is not for that.
I don’t know how long it went on for, but i do know my mother’s relationship with his father was getting rocky when he sent us to another city, thus ending his son’s access to me. As far as i can recall, we never went back to that church.
I did see the boy again. I know what the final, most disturbing scene means now.
I know i’m coming off super dramatic (because i am), but i won’t be writing about that part. No one should have to carry those images, that knowledge, unless they must.
I know why i dreamed of men falling out of the sky the next day, and i will share about that. It’s easy.
There were so many. So many.
They fell out of the sky and onto me and i was hollow inside.
The first dream is about the shame that i carry for “falling in love” with an abuser. It connotes my ambiguity as a child, living through trauma. The ugly truth of it that, a part of me preferred, even wanted, the sexual abuse, because (not often, but sometimes) it felt better than being beaten and starved and humiliated.
I think maybe my second dream was a gift from my weird brain – from my system, to me. I always struggle with feelings of inadequacy and guilt. That i haven’t accomplished much of anything, and i’ve made so many mistakes, and i’m so often barely functional…
There were so many.
I don’t know why i’m so damn hard on myself, because times like this –when i’m looking at it all– i’m shocked that i survived it. Even being a multiple and my brain hiding the sex stuff, the things that i’ve fully and consciously remembered all along were horrific.
As soon as i started typing, the truth of the dream started pouring out of me. I want to be completely honest and up front with you all, and i feel i must disclose that i drank a 6-pack before i could even touch the goddamn keyboard.
I will not be going on a bender.
I just leaned on the tried and true because i knew it needed to come out and i kept actively fighting it. I greased the wheels. I’m not proud of it, but i won’t ever lie on this blog – by omission or otherwise.
I’m going to cruise YouTube and shnuggle my doggo and my hubs.
Life is better lived with clarity,
IMAGE: Toa Heftiba
Sunday, September 20, 20202: I’m adding on a bit more. I rushed to complete this yesterday, and everything was pouring out quickly once i started bashing away on my Notepad.
I think it’s significant that i was taking care of children (a common motif in my dreams). There were 4 boys, ranging in age from around 4 – 10yrs old. The oldest looked a bit like my real life nephew, but i might be reaching there. In the dream they were my SIL’s sons, and i was freaking out because i knew she’d be justifiably upset that they’d been exposed to such violent and sexual imagery. I haven’t quite figured out/decided if everyone being male except for me –in both dreams– is significant. I present very femme, but have some strong traits that were traditionally identified as masculine. Plus, i always test as androgynous (not just online silly ones, i’ve taken psychiatric tests in hospital). I’ve always felt very “girly-girl” inside, and despite being Amazon-sized, i’ve never been mistaken for a boy. I do however, have 2 in my system that are male. One of them is a manifestation of pure rage, and the other disappeared a couple of years ago along with another. Their disappearance precipitated my return to therapy.
I think the hacking part is quite significant and deserves some commentary. I hacked my own mind, in a way. The personality part of my brain broke into parts of my deeper functions at infancy (i think – no proof, just speculation on my part) and accessed inner abilities. From there i could split off into pieces in order to survive what was happening to me. I’ve read scads and reams of information on memory and so i know all of this is nebulous at best, but i’m unescapably drawn to doing it, and it seems to help, so i’m going to keep doing it until my results stop, or stop being helpful.
I think i’d already accomplished splitting off before i could speak. I think this because i have a crystal clear memory of laying on the couch and looking up at my maternal grandfather sitting beside me. He was laughing and talking to someone sitting directly across from him, but i either didn’t see who it was, or my memory just doesn’t include that information. I felt happy and i could feel my legs kicking and my face smiling. Years later i related the memory to my mother, who went immediately to a bookshelf and pulled out the photo album she had of my first 3 or 4yrs. She said, “You’re just internalising this picture as a memory. You were 9mos old.”
Sure enough, it was exactly what i’d described. However now, looking back upon all the events that i have, and reading and studying so much scientifically-based information on the nature of memories, i have some basis for doubt. The memory doesn’t come with words, only emotion. I can hear my grandpa talking, but i don’t understand what he’s saying (he only spoke English). Further, as someone who has long and much experience in learning how to separate dreams from actual memories that were hiding in my brain, and were merely disguised as dreams, i can now easily tell the difference. The memories where i was drugged are fuzzy and feel fluffy in my brain. The memories where i was not under the influence are sharper and feel crispy-crackly. Significant data exists to show that an alters memory can be nearly idetic. Legitimate dreams may feel either way, but they’re the easiest to discern because there will always be something bizarre (TVs and computer monitors keep popping up where they weren’t before), or something impossible (it’s raining men), or something that doesn’t jibe with my real life remembered history (my SIL doesn’t have 4 sons), for which i have tangible evidence.
This is the tough part; the reason i felt compelled to add a bit more onto this analysis. My brain was also hacked by other people. This is a sketchy and controversial area to wade into, but i’m already neck deep in stuff many (including professionals in the field), don’t believe in, or reserve judgment based on what they see as insufficient evidence for them to accept it as true. Multiplicity, memories, lucid dreaming, a bunch of paedophiles and disgusting sexual opportunists that know each other and help each other and maybe even hang out. So yeah… I’m gonna go there.
It is my firm belief that many of my abusers knew i was a multiple. I also believe they knew how to MAKE them. This is based on memories i have of abusers calling me names that weren’t my name and realising years later that they were the names of some of the parts in my system. I remember some of the things that abusers would say to each other in front of me that i didn’t understand at the time. Things like, “It’s all good when she faints and then opens her eyes.” And my mother on the phone, telling someone what name to call me, or reassuring them that i won’t rat them out because i never remember.
They hacked into my brain and accessed certain parts, and made other parts that were closer to their personal grocery lists of what they wanted in a victim.
Yes, i’m aware i’m flying around in cuckoobird territory.
And yes, i might be wrong.
But i don’t think so.
I think i’m done with this dream now. Maybe. Hopefully.
Y’all take care of yourselves as best you can, y’hear?