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Freyja Lee

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  1. I do try to nurture myself. I have my hobbies that I am starting to get back into. I exercise and try to eat healthy. I try to do things for myself. Always looking for ways to better myself, which I feel is a form of nurture - to nurture those things that make me, me. Reaching out for support would be a NO. I attend SIA - 12 step meeting for Survivors of Incest. I get to hear other survivors struggles and hope and I get to share...when I can bring myself to. And I go to premarital counseling with my fiancée. But I do not have friends or a sponsor/fellow traveler that I reach out to for support. I usually hold it in till it just spills over and I share with my spouse or my adult daughter. I could say that I go to her for support.
  2. Am I in touch with my feelings now? Definitely not. This is one of the biggest issues with my abuse. As I've mentioned, I don't struggle with flashbacks, etc. My struggle is my disassociation with myself and those closest with me. Which is because I am not in touch with my feelings. I feel like I go through life emotionally flatlining. I'm not in touch with my anger, which I feel is a good thing, but I am also not in touch with my happiness. I have so much in my life to be excited about, to appreciate, to look forward to. But because I am so detached, I just go through the motions in life and don't get to experience the joys. I've watched all three of my children turn 18, graduate High School, one go off to the Army and get married, return home from the Army, and countless other 'life's high's' and through it all, I was numb. I got engaged 6 month's ago, moved in with him, changed jobs for less stress, planning a honeymoon in Hawaii. There is nothing in my life at this moment that I can complain about, but do I walk around, happy, experiencing this precious moment?? No, I'm flatlined. I would feel the same inside if all things were struggling. I want to enjoy life. I want to feel happiness. I want to feel the love that is surrounding me. Another way being out of touch with my feelings comes out, is in my relationship. My fiancée will ask me questions and I can't answer them. If it is something that involves asking myself how I feel about the situation in order for me to answer it, I will be quiet for a few minutes, while I process everything to come up with an answer, and there are times, I can't even come up with an answer, and I don't even acknowledge what he said, because I have nothing. This is something we've talked about and I am working on — to at lease acknowledge him and let him know I have no answer at that moment. Making decisions can be hard when you have no feelings to base them on. One last thing — I mentioned that being out of touch with my feelings is one of my biggest struggles with my abuse, I can't leave it unsaid that my self hate, not feeling worthy to love or be loved, are the bases for all my other struggles with my abuse. These are the things I hope to heal from.
  3. Thank goodness it doesn't affect me the way it use to!!! There use to be a lot of shame around sex/masturbation. A lot of the sex I had was for the other person, not for myself. Even if I wanted to be sexual as well, once we started, it was as if I removed myself from it and just went through the motions of whatever the other person wanted to do. And even though I've had many giving partners who were looking to take care of me, not just themselves, and I wanted it/them too, once, we were in the act, I would regress. When I was younger, I had a lot of sexual triggers. Waking up to someone touching me sexually was a big one for a long time. My partners learned that one real quick. Giving oral was definitely a trigger. Receiving oral would cause me to regress. And again, even though, I enjoyed it, there was always this underlined checkout/regression/timid side of me that would come out. For many years, I felt as if I were numb, sexually. My sexual body parts did not feel the sensations like it does today. I was unable to orgasm — I think when you train your body to not respond for so many years, it takes a lot of recovery to get it back. The sexual abuse caused me to be promiscuous for many years of my life. Having sex with someone I just met or didn't even like was not unusual for me. If someone was persistent enough, I'd go along with it. For many years, I would have to think of the abuse/my abusers to enjoy masturbation/sometimes even sex. I think this may have been a control thing for me. I am now at a place where I can enjoy pleasuring myself without all the negative tapes. I am also able to enjoy being sexual with my partner. I enjoy doing things, I don't just do them. I look forward to it. I think I have a pretty healthy view of sex and a healthy sex life today.
  4. Thank goodness it doesn't affect me the way it use to!!! There use to be a lot of shame around sex/masturbation. A lot of the sex I had was for the other person, not for myself. Even if I wanted to be sexual as well, once we started, it was as if I removed myself from it and just went through the motions of whatever the other person wanted to do. And even though I've had many giving partners who were looking to take care of me, not just themselves, and I wanted it/them too, once, we were in the act, I would regress. When I was younger, I had a lot of sexual triggers. Waking up to someone touching me sexually was a big one for a long time. My partners learned that one real quick. Giving oral was definitely a trigger. Receiving oral would cause me to regress. And again, even though, I enjoyed it, there was always this underlined checkout/regression/timid side of me that would come out. For many years, I felt as if I were numb, sexually. My sexual body parts did not feel the sensations like it does today. I was unable to orgasm — I think when you train your body to not respond for so many years, it takes a lot of recovery to get it back. The sexual abuse caused me to be promiscuous for many years of my life. Having sex with someone I just met or didn't even like was not unusual for me. If someone was persistent enough, I'd go along with it. For many years, I would have to think of the abuse/my abusers to enjoy masturbation/sometimes even sex. I think this may have been a control thing for me. I am now at a place where I can enjoy pleasuring myself without all the negative tapes. I am also able to enjoy being sexual with my partner. I enjoy doing things, I don't just do them. I look forward to it. I think I have a pretty healthy view of sex and a healthy sex life today.
  5. Step I/Question VII: How has the abuse affected how you feel about your body? For one, the abuse made me HATE MY BODY. I will write on this after. For two, the abuse made me HATE ME. I hated myself so much. I hated everything about me. On top of all the sexual abuse, my mom was an alcoholic/drug addict who would beat and abandon my brother and I, until my dad got custody of us when I was 6. My dad was an alcoholic/drug addict who was physically, mentally and emotionally abusive/was neglectful. He had a live in girlfriend who was a hard core alcoholic/coke head who was very abusive — including physical abuse. There was constant random abuse. And on top of ALL this, there was the sexual abuse. For those new to my writings, 3 incestual relations for 10 years, 1 incestual relation short term, 2 guys/1 night of sexual abuse age between 8-12, and one 3 month long relation with an adult male at age 14. (TW) Growing up, in additional to the taboo/secret sexual abuse that was happening, there was a lot of out in the open sexual abuse that went on as well. My dads girlfriend would walk around naked ALL the time, there were polaroid pictures of her all the time, naked. Sometimes by herself, sometimes performing sexual acts with my dad, sometimes her and her best friend, and the best friend's boyfriend. She had a 'sugar daddy' who she would visit, have sex with and get her drugs from. She would come back with polaroid's of that and tell my dad all about it in front of my brother and I. She would participate in wet t-shirt contests at the bars — I would have to hear all about that. Hear about her sex with my dad and everyone else she was having sex with. Her and my dad would have sex in front of us. Her friend and her boyfriend would have sex in the room with the door open in front of us. The best friend and her would have sex on the bed with the door open in front of us. As a teen, I was always the only female. Family and friends were male. My dad had a monthly subscription to Playboy, which sat on the coffee table. I got to hear every perverted comment made by the guys who would flip through it when visiting. My dad had the Spice channels, so the living room constantly had porn playing. Again, hearing all the comments and perversion, and walking out into the living room with anyone masturbating at any time. When out and about with my family or watching tv, they would see young girls and say what they would want to do to them or whatever perverse thought was going through their mind. All of the above made me hate my body. It made me constantly compare myself to these other females and to never match up. I've always felt like there are males, there are females, and there is me. I never felt like a girl, like a woman. I am hypervigilant when it come to young or pretty girls around my spouse. As far back as I can remember. When we are out and about or watching tv, I am constantly on the look out for a pretty/sexy/young girl that my spouse may see, and when there is one, I feel shame inside. Like I am less than. I avoid going places with my spouse, where I know there will be beautiful girls — no beach, no concerts, etc. I say the meanest things to myself. As if a person's self worth is solely based on their looks. It is so shitty to feel and live this way. I've always been told that I am beautiful/attractive, but I have always seen myself as the ugliest person in the world. And what does it even matter??? There aren't enough words to say how the abuse has affected me and how or even how much I hate myself/my body. And all this doesn't even touch on how the abuse has affected me as a person. All the screwed up shit I've done, all the screwed up shit I've allowed others to do. How warped my perception is. How I am unable to love/be loved. Unable to be present. Unable to be healthy and make healthy choices. The list goes on....
  6. Step I/Question VI: Do you isolate yourself? If yes, how? I don't normally look at it as 'I isolate myself'. I just happen to spend a lot of time alone/with very limited people. The only people in my circle are my three children and my fiance. I don't talk to my family and since ending unhealthy relationships with past friends and my children's family, I haven't made any new friendships. Now that I am engaged, I do have new people in my life, his adult children, his friends and his family. But I don't really talk to any of them outside of when we are all hanging out. All that to say, outside my adult children and fiance, I don't have friends/family. So this makes it easier to spend a lot of time alone. I started a new job 2 months ago, I am the ONLY person in the office. I have Vice President's who are my 'boss' and come into the office maybe once a week for a meeting or to sign checks. So now I am alone all day/all week at work — I'm starting to feel like this may not be a good thing. Sometimes I accept invitations to attend something, and then when the day/time comes, I either end up being super late, or cancel all together. It can even be something that sounded good and I was looking forward to, but when the time came, I'd just rather be home or not be there— especially if I will have the house to myself I do select isolation when in a group setting. I will find a tucked away spot to be and not have to interact. If I can't get away physically, then I will disengage from the conversation. Letting everyone else talk. If necessary, I will throw in an occasional uh huh or that sounds interesting. But I do not engage in the conversation, even when it is something that I can relate to or have input on. I always feel like I'm doing this by choice, but when the time comes when I really should be participating in the conversation (still getting to know my fiancé's adult children and trying to interact is painful) I can't find a way to engage/participate. And it is an awful feeling.
  7. Step I/Question V: Do you act out your pain by self-injury, overeating, drugs, etc? My family smoked pot, so I was smoking by 7th grade. At 15 my cousin gave me my first line of speed, which ended with me in rehab by age 20. I haven't done speed since, but I have on and off turned to weed to escape life. My drug addition was short but did a lot of damage. Over the course of it, I lost 3 apartments, 3 cars, been homeless, had 3 children by age 21, had two of them taken for 6 months, and lost out on years of working towards an education or bettering my life. In and out of my addiction, I participated in a lot of other self harming behaviors due to my sexual abuse. I slept with many people I wouldn't have slept with (wrote on this is a previous post). I stayed in relationships I should have, some physically abuse, some emotionally abusive. I allowed abuse people to be part of my life, till I was healthy enough to cut them out. My self hate and unworthiness has kept me from living the life that I deserve to live and to enjoy it. At times, I participate in risky behavior. Whatever that may be at the moment - from smoking to affairs, to acting out sexually with my partner or by myself.
  8. Q III. Do you blame the assaults on yourself? On your body? Tricky question...nothing jumps out at me as definitive. I know when it started, I was too young to have been responsible for it. But there are times when I have felt that when I was older, maybe things would have been different and not carried out for so many years, had I reacted differently to my abuse/abusers. I was so submissive and groomed, that it made it easy for perpetrators. There were times my body betrayed me and responded to the abuse....wth...what do you do with that?? I don't remember ever being told that I was having these things done to me because I was a good girl, or a bad girl, or a dirty girl. or because they loved me...I just remember feeling shame on a molecule level. I felt dirty, I felt like everyone knew-just by looking at me. I felt like 'the abuse' was what they saw when they looked at me — and this gave others permission to abuse me the way they did. When I became a teenager, my dad started using his sexual abuse as a means of me getting things I asked for/needed. I had to let him touch me and do what he asks, for him to do something. I knew the abuse would happen one way or another, so most of the time I went along with what he said. In an attempt to control the abuse, I started to use this manipulation on the other people who abused me. At this point, the abuse, control, manipulation, survival was 'me'.
  9. Thank you for that perspective, it makes perfect sense, and I've never made that connection.
  10. This was pretty much answered in my response to Question I: Have you kept your sexual abuse a secret?. I protected all my perpetrators. My dad, my brother, my uncle, my cousin, my dad's girlfriend's two brothers and the adult/child relationship I had. I didn't tell anyone of the abuse while it was happening. And as I previously journaled, I even kept the secret from the perpetrators themselves. By pretending to be asleep and therefore, 'not knowing of the abuse'. If I acknowledged the abuse, then I would have been the 'bad' person. Who and how can you tell when there is no one to tell? I couldn't tell my dad, who was sexually abusing me, or my brother, who was sexually abusing me. I couldn't tell my mom, who abandoned me to my pedophile father. My dad made sure that I knew my mom didn't want me and that if he didn't 'chose' to be a single father, I'd be in foster care. When sexual abuse runs in the family, there is no one to tell.
  11. When I think about the secrecy surrounding my abuse, there are two more instances that come to mind. My dad was a single dad, raising my brother and I. In the 70's/80's, it was less common for a father to be a single parent as it was for a mother. My dad wore this as a badge of honor. Always sure to share this fact with strangers and relish in their praises of what a wonderful thing he was doing. I just remember standing by his side, as he would pull me in and share what a hard job it has been for him. Then the person would look down at me, smile, and tell me how lucky I was to have him. I would just feel so much rage and hate inside. All I could do was smile and thank them. But all I could think was what a piece of shit father he was. Alcoholic, drug addict, who put his abusive girlfriend before me and my brother. His rage, his physical, mental and sexual abuse. Yeah, he was a great father. The other time was when I had two children and was in between places to live. Unfortunately, I had to move in with my dad for a few months while getting back on my feet. At the time, I was not getting along with my kids grandmother and aunt, who knew of my sexual abuse from my father. When they would call, I would tell my dad to tell them I wasn't there. There were a couple times this happened and apparently, they heard my kids in the background. They called children services who had a social worker come out to check on the kids. The kids and I weren't there the first time she came out. She met with my dad and let him know of the allegations of sexual abuse when I was a child, which he obviously denied. When I came home, he let me know about the social worker and that she would be back out to meet with me and the kids. He went on a rant of how he never abused me and how I better tell her this when she comes back out. All the buried hate, rage, and disgust came flooding back. Now I have to defend my dad against sexual abuse allegations, I had to protect him once more, I had to deny what he had done to me....because of my situation I did just that....
  12. Step One — Question One: Did you keep your abuse a secret. Part II (Trigger Warning) After processing the first half of this question, I started to see the different levels of secrecy. Not only did I keep the abuse a secret from outsiders, but I also kept it a secret from my perpetrators. As a teenager, my brother's sexual abuse always happened in the middle of the night while I was asleep. I would wake up to him touching me, while touching himself and verbalizing his fantasy. I would pretend to stay asleep through the whole thing — as if I had no knowledge of what he did to me. My dad, a lot of his abuse happened while I was awake, but one of his MO's was to carry me out of my bed during the night and bring me to his where he would abuse me. During these instances, again, I would pretend to stay asleep and to be oblivious of what he had done to me. My uncle who abused me on several occasions when he got me alone, had other ways of using me in everyday situations and again, I would pretend to be oblivious to what he was doing. One example would be of a time I was at his house, standing in the middle of the living room holding and petting his cat. He walked up to me, started talking to the cat and then petting it. After petting the cat's head a couple of times, he began to pet the cat on it's side that was pressed against my chest. Sliding his hand between the cat and my chest and petting me more than the cat. He would always wear short shorts with no underwear and let himself hangout and watch me to see if I would look. He had a lot of odd ways of being openly sexual towards me. Again... I would pretend to be oblivious. By pretending to not be aware of these things, I kept the abuse a secret from the very people who were abusing. I protected them. I took all the guilt and shame that should have been theirs and made it mine. Part III will touch on two other layers of secrecy...
  13. Step One - Question One: Did you keep your abuse a secret. Part I My immediate thought went to how long did I keep my abuse a secret, how old was I the first time I told someone, who was the first person I told...and then the darker sides of the secret started to come to light (see part II). I had my first child at age 17. I had not told anyone of my sexual abuse prior to this. My son's father went to prison when I was 3 months pregnant, and after I had my son, I connected with a friend of my brothers. She and I became very close and I started dating her brother and became close to their mother as well. I confided in them about some of my abuse (years later, they would use this information against me a number of times). At this same time, all of the family sexual abuse was starting to come to light. I learned of my brother's sexual abuse, my cousin's sexual abuse, my dads, both uncles and so on. I also learned of other people my dad had sexually abused. Up to this point, I thought it had only been me — I was WAY off. I learned that my dad had also sexually abused my brother's best friend for many years, who was also my childhood sweetheart as we had an on again off again relationship all throughout Jr. High. At some point, he learned that my dad had sexually abused me growing up. A few years later, this person told my new boyfriend that me and my dad had a sexual relationship for many years and that it was consensual. I felt so betrayed and had similar experiences after that. I then became much more selective of what and with who I shared with. See part II...
  14. Thank you all for the kind words and the warm welcome. Thank you for sharing and thank you for the hope.
  15. Freyja Lee

    Who Abused You?

    I was abused by my dad from about age 6 to 15. ...my brother, as a young kid he would experiment on me, then sexual abuse from around age 12 to 16. ...my dads girlfriends two brothers took pictures of me and abused me. I can't remember how old I was, but somewhere between 4-6th grade. ...my uncle - a couple of hand full of times around age 12 ...my cousin made out with me, touched me/made me touch him and almost raped me ...when I was 14 I had an affair with my best friend's dad for a summer, he was about 32 *see blog "Where is the Line" There was one of my mom's boyfriends, who I feel may have sexually abused me as well. But I have blocked a lot of his abuse towards me. I have memories of all the abuse he inflicted on others: beating my mom up, beating my brother, him beating the dog and making us watch and kill the rabbits we had. I know that he beat me as well, but I don't have the image recall on my abuse. I do remember being terrified of him, especially at the dinner table and when he was drinking beer and watching football. I do have one quick image of him with me in the bedroom, but the image disappears before I can even get a glimpse of it. We lived with him for maybe 6 months when I was 5. When my mom finally left him, she hitch hiked to Colorado from Nebraska with my brother and I. As a teenager/adult, I've sex with many people I would not have, if it weren't for my abuse and conditioning. Some 'boyfriends', some acquaintances , and one, I didn't even know his name. If I said no a number of times, and they persisted, I would just let them do what they wanted to me. What I wanted didn't matter. If they wanted it, they were going to get it. I could give it to them or they could take it. Better to submit than to be raped....
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