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  1. Today
  2. * This is also posted in Share Your Story. My story first appeared within the forums back in 2007. I’d just joined After Silence, and my trauma had occurred eleven years prior to that. Now, coming up on 23 years since I was raped, it has occurred to me that while my story remains the same, my perspective on it has greatly evolved. Much can be said for the passage of time – to include the coming to light of details that perhaps were overlooked or otherwise censored the first time I’d chosen to write about what is undeniably the worst time in my life. To explain, 2007’s post was written by an entirely different version of me. A me that still blamed herself, a me that was fearful of being told that I ‘should be over this already.’ A me that was on her way to becoming free of a loveless marriage, where the person who should have been my biggest support was also the person I was most afraid of. A me, who remained within a mental prison with little hope of ever being paroled. Regardless, this story was told once before, but to best try to describe the way it was written in 2007 – it’s like watching a movie on mute. You know it’s there, you’ve got the gist of what happened, but there’s still SO much there that was missed or omitted simply because I was either not ready to elaborate on details or because I thought to do so would be risky. I can honestly say most of the risk was attributed to my then-husband finding out that I’d put that much of my ‘dirty laundry’ online – and the smaller percentage was in being subsequently blamed for my own part in what had happened. Of course, I know now that the latter was a product of my own under-developed thinking… So, what’s happened since I last told my story? I got divorced. His idea, believe it or not – I guess I was unable to measure up to what he perceived to be the perfect wife. I was fat, I was lazy, I was horrible in bed. It was just easier for him to chalk it all up to depression and bail out of the relationship rather than try to fix it. In all honesty, it was beyond fixable and in hindsight, I’m GLAD he asked for the divorce. I know I wouldn’t have been the first one to walk away. If this were the case for him, I’d still be in a VERY bad situation. I finally went to therapy. I made my first appointment one week after he asked me for the divorce. He no longer cared to be ‘my person,’ and actually encouraged me to go. I’d realize later it’s because he was already seeing someone new and thought perhaps therapy would help carry me through the hurdles and transitions that lay ahead and would lessen his own personal obligation to me. I grieved my marriage of 8 years – not because I loved him. I did, but it was a somewhat forced affection for the man who presented as a ‘safer’ choice. When I met him, I was on a very dangerous, self-destructive journey, and I think to marry him was a choice I needed to make in order to force a direction that didn’t lead to my complete downfall. I grieved the familiarity more than I did anything else – I sobbed over the loss of not just a marriage, but also of the idea that stability existed for me. I eventually found love – the head-over-heels kind that I thought was the case the first time around. I found this with my best friend – another survivor. It is never a nice thing to hear – a loved one having been through their own trauma, but in our case, it made it all the easier to comfort one another and hold each other up when needed. We just celebrated our 10th anniversary this past winter. Through therapy, self-reflection and in realizing the true definition of a healthy relationship, I’ve come to realize that I am not a survivor of just rape and potentially of child sexual abuse – I’m also a survivor of the more ‘silent’ type of domestic violence – although my husband never raised a hand to me in anger, there was mental, emotional and verbal abuse and there was behavior that could be defined as gaslighting. It took many years, but I am finally understanding there is more to my story that originally put forth, things I’ve never said, and that I’m now needing to add to the previously presented version, if only for the sake of being accurate on where I stand now and why. So basically, after further thought on how to re-introduce my story, or at least, an updated, uncensored version of it, I’ve decided that it needs to be written in three installments. To explain, there are three very significant junctures within my life that I have realized are all connected and contribute to the woman you know today. The first installment will discuss - in depth - my childhood. It’s hard for me, in hindsight, to pinpoint exactly when I was first abused. Unlike the trauma I experienced in 1996, (this will be the second installment) I have zero memory of the point in my childhood where something went terribly wrong. I have written bits and pieces of what I do remember; in blog entries and in postings, but I will attempt to elaborate on things a little more clearly in this first installment. I am sure this will be the shortest one. For now, anyway. Perhaps at some point, there will be an addendum to it, should things ever come to light. I’ve shared with very few people what I suspect happened based on behaviors of mine that, as an adult, I recognize as being problematic. I have been holding onto some very broken, fragmented memories and tiny little snippets that cannot prove anything, as well as the belief that if I couldn’t remember, then it likely didn’t exist. Now, years later, while those childhood incidents have never been confirmed, I cannot deny there was something VERY wrong and that they were not handled the way they should have been. Although my mother, who was not my suspected abuser, is a key player in this particular time period, several people failed me. Several. My second installment will likely be the hardest of the three – for I feel that whenever I’ve recalled the events of October 4th, 1996, I’ve taken care to omit a lot of the grisly details as a means of sugar-coating and perhaps protecting both myself and whomever was listening. We all have our own personal reasons for doing so, and I’m no different. A friend recently confided in me that she felt ‘crazy’ for having the desire to get into all of the ‘nitty-gritty’ details – who on earth would even want to read that? It’s not crazy, though – it makes perfect sense to me. You see, we as survivors do not just remember the condensed version of our story that we might prefer to share with others for the time being – most of us remember the details more than anything else. We remember the things that were said to us that we’d never repeat. We remember what was done, we remember what we were thinking during the moment. We remember the fear, the pain, the shame. These are things we don’t really talk about – especially the shame bits. Too often, it’s because of shame that we try to avoid these details, some of which are very important to take the time to try to understand how they’ve affected us in the long term. The third and final installment deals with life after 1996. See, I truly thought my story ended there, as that was a more obvious trauma, but I was wrong. Dead wrong. Trauma does not always have an exclamation point – it sometimes is silent. This third installment will discuss those very things that were not quite as obvious to me – things I’ve only recently learned to recognize and give a name to. Things I’ve had to admit to myself as being yet another truth that I’d been denying existed for ages. Things I’ve had to reluctantly accept, even if it meant adding another form of abuse that I’ve experienced to a list that already seemed long. Along with this story comes that sad realization that there are still many side effects of the eight years that I was married that I still struggle with today - and that domestic violence is the main culprit. Friends - trauma leaves marks. No two marks are the same, but regardless, they are lasting and they’re impossible to erase, ignore or scrub away. So, rather than try to conceal these marks any further, I’ve decided to highlight them and to attempt to explain why they’re there – to myself, most of all, as I’ve realized that it’s mostly me who’s been in denial for all of these years and it’s time to transition into acceptance. I will be posting the installments here, and in the Share Your Story forum when I’m finished typing them up. It hasn’t been easy to hold myself to task and to write all of this out – especially while juggling life as I know it…family, house, kids, pets, school stuff - and I imagine some of it will be hard for you to read, too – especially those of you who have taken the time to get to know me. I imagine that now, you’ll REALLY know me. And surprisingly, while that scared the life out of me at one point, I’m now okay with that. I welcome any thoughts, feedback, well wishes and kind words via comments or PMs. Although I am not very good at asking for it, I will admit that I am needing periodic doses of encouragement as well as the reassurance that I am being heard as I struggle to reflect, analyze and interpret not only one voice, but three different ones as they each tell their stories. In closing, I wish to thank in advance, those of you who read beyond this introduction. I am hopeful that this not only serves as a reminder that while trauma affects us all in different ways, we are all actually very similar in the respect that we’re not alone in how we think, how we learned to stay silent in the first place, and most importantly, how we ALL deserve to heal. All my love, - Capulet
  3. Yesterday
  4. I think I am successfully hiding the anxiety and fear I am feeling right now. But its a lonely place.

    1. Free2Fly


      Safe hugs :hug: if ok?

    2. Field8


      I hope that you know you are not alone here

  5. Finally....

    I think it sucks they didn't speed things up and tell you the results as soon as possible. I'm glad it is something that can be treated and will be sitting with you in spirit during and after your procedure.
  6. It's official now...

    Thank you so much, @Amsekhmet - I have seen SO much growth in myself since coming back from a lengthy hiatus a couple years ago. It truly helps me to have ingrained myself back into this community and to have the support of the folks here who have gotten to know me and who have always, even if unaware of it, motivated me and encouraged me to be a better version of myself. Not sure about bravery/courage - feeling a lot of mixed feelings about it all and it's hard to specifically pick those two out of the mix, but at the very least, I'm hoping to be brave enough to post the intro later. Thanks again, sending huggles! - Cap
  7. Here for myself and my daughter

    Hi @Two of Us and welcome to AS. I am glad you found us through Reddit, but I am sorry for the trauma that both of you have experienced. It is very hard for anyone to open up about abuse and the secret wounds that we try to keep hidden. I applaud the bravery that you are both showing and I know the struggle of trying to learn to speak up about it it took me 10 years to finally tell someone and start the healing process, silence only delayed the inevitable and caused me years of pain, I hope neither of you experience that heart ache. Thanks for joining and for support each other this way. BraveOne
  8. New friends

    Hi @Sunshinecomfort welcome to AS. I am sorry for the trauma that brought you here, but you have found a safe place to talk about it and process through it. I sort of know the feeling of everyone wanting me to be fine but no one wanting to listen and have conversation with me about it. You are not alone and the fact that you are reaching out and trying other venues says a lot about who you are as a person. I believe in you and I know that you will heal it just takes time. BraveOne
  9. New friends

    Hello Sunshinecomfort, how are you? I hope you are fine. Welcome to this group. Take care.
  10. Last week
  11. cant sleep

    Oh dear! I have similar issues, when it gets dark all the bad memories flood me. I've found listening to calming melodies, music that reminds me of happy times, to help me get to sleep; something to divert my mind. I hope you're able to find something to help you
  12. It's official now...

    We’ve talked about a lot of this already, but I want to say again how proud I am of you for everything you’re doing right now. You’ve come such a long a way, but you’ve also been smart about it, going at your own pace and practicing self care. I’ll be keeping an eye out for the installments. I know it isn’t easy to focus on it enough to tell the whole thing, and you’re brave for facing it head on like that.
  13. It's official now...

    @goldraindrops Thank you so much!!!! Knowing that my friends are close by and are holding my hand through all of it (even if just mentally) truly does help this process. All of it. It makes perfect sense about the sleepless nights. Thank you. I needed that reminder! Although this weekend has been full of activity (nothing fun, sadly, my 'activity' consisted of some yard work and walking/jogging around a track near the house) I did manage to write up a little something - somewhat of a prologue/introduction of what is coming in three additional installments. I'm just putting the finishing touches on that and will likely be posting it early next week. My standing OCD is preventing me from posting it before I've read it over a hundred times - and until I've applied any and all necessary tweaks before doing so. Man, telling your story isn't for the faint of heart! I AM tired, though. I think sleep will be a little more forthcoming tonight. My body hurts, but I have to blame that on the amount of mowing I did! Hoping your weekend is going well!! Love, Cap
  14. cant sleep

    i can never fall asleep anymore. And when i do I have nightmares... Idk what to do help!
  15. I'm lost

    I'm so lost idk what to do. Trigger warning! A few months ago i was sexually assualted. A little background on me I come from an abusive background as a kid and i am not good at expressing my feelings. So To clear my mind I go for walks usually at night when my mindset gets really bad. I really am not able to tell people this part, i'm suicidal. and I have had this mindset since I was 13 and Im 19 now... Going back to what happened a few months ago, I was at my university and it was around 1 am and i was feeling really low and down and like I was going to do something that was irreversible and i was alone. My roomate was hanging out with her friend. so i went for a walk and after that I was never the same. what happened ill never forget. But I couldnt remember for the longest time but recently i remebered all of it and im in a really bad place. I was walking across campus to go to a spot that I usually sit at and im going to just fast foward to when it happened. I was walking and I saw something and my headphones were in so I turned around and i saw a sudden movement so i got scared and started to turn away and Then someone grabbed my leg.. I was so fucking scared. and then i looked and there were two guys and They started grabbing me and trying to take off my clothes and then i kept trying to get away but it hurt when i resisted. so i shut down mentally and then itwas in flashes what happened next. Then there was only one guy and he was grabbing my boobs and trying to take off my pants and he was kissing me an d I wanted to die. Then he licked the side of my face and the smell of his breath... I can still smell it sometimes... then he shoved his hands down my pants and put his dirty disgusting fingers in side me an d it hurt so much. His nails were chipped and then his pants were unbuckled. And then i guess someone yelled something and he turned and then i was running and i couldnt stop running. I tried getting help later on but no one seems to give a fuck. and i cant do this. I cant live with this. there are too many other things going on right now.
  16. New friends

    Hi and welcome to AS! You deserve to be heard and validated and supported. I hope you will find that here in this community.
  17. New friends

    Hi, Sunshinecomfort, and welcome!
  18. Hello

    Hi, rokcsjl, and welcome!
  19. New friends

    Hey welcome to as, I know that feeling all too well , I'm happy to listen if you wanna talk. safe hugs
  20. Hello

    Hi, @rokcsjl - welcome to After Silence! I am so saddened to hear of the trauma you've experienced. I am however, hopeful that being here will provide clarity on whatever it is that you are unclear or fuzzy on, as well as comfort and healing. You are in a very safe place and we're happy to 'meet' you!!! All the best, Capulet
  21. Hello

    Hiya I'm really sorry for what u have been through we are all here to. Support. U.
  22. New friends

    Hi sunshine welcome. To A/s. You come to right place we are all. Here for cu and. No one will. Judge Ur get lots of support. Here
  23. It's official now...

    It's so brave of you to take such a big step in your life - enrolling and now registering for your classes as a full time student. And, at the same time, the "inward" work you are doing to write out more of your story. We all know how emotionally draining that can be. You're doing so much good work on yourself and taking such big steps in positive (but new) directions. It seems understandable that you are in flux and will have some outward signs of all these big steps you're taking - like not always sleeping well. So many of us on this site know about not sleeping well. It is a well known after-effect of trauma and something that reemerges when we are going through changes. Anyway, I think it's important for you to take a step back and give yourself some kudos for all the positive work you're doing in your life. It will take time to adjust things like your sleeping. We're all proud of you. Love, Gold Raindrops
  24. Hello

    Welcome, @rokcsjl. I am sorry for all the trauma you've endured. It is common to have fragmented/incomplete memories around difficult experiences, and there are many people here who can relate. Feel free to read through our different forums and post whenever you feel comfortable. Blessings, Gold Raindrops
  25. New friends

    Dear @Sunshinecomfort, I'm sorry for the trauma that brought you here...and for the secondary trauma that comes when it feels like people don't understand or know how to deal with our experiences. There are many of us here who know about that and we are here to talk and support each other any time. I hope you find some peace and comfort. Gold Raindrops
  26. New friends

    Welcome to AS @Sunshinecomfort, you've found a kind, caring, supportive and non judgmental community. Take your time looking around and post when you feel comfortable and safe. I hope you find what you're looking for to help you heal.
  27. Hello

    Welcome to AS @rokcsjl. It is a big step to post here. I am sorry for what you've endured. You are definitely not alone in having clarity about some things and uncertainty around others. I think you will find this to be a safe and caring place to share and work on healing.
  28. New friends

    Hi Sunshinecomfort, Welcom to AS. I am very sorry for the trauma you have experienced and the struggles you face. I am sorry that you have nobody that understands what you are dealing with. It is not dramatic to struggle and want healing. I am glad that you have found us because you will find understanding and support. Take a look around and you will see that others do share the same struggles and feelings. You are not alone. I am glad you have found us and wish you the very best in your healing journey. Mary
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