Wednesday, October 06, 2004

corrosive head pollution

I need to talk to clear my mind... to figure things out. But it's a dangerous business. You have to watch it. It can overwhelm you any minute.

It's not necessarily that it gives you nightmares. That you will have to think about it for the rest of your life, in horror. It affected me in a totally unexpected way, actually in a way that I thought I was over it.
Either way, you know you have to deal with it. And if you want to be happy again, you incorporate into your worldview... somehow. That's how it will change you. Your mind doesn’t allow you to live in horror. It will try to make sense of it, at any cost.

If I take it easy, if I make no big deal of someone using me, treating me like meat, if I play along and am happy, then it won't hurt. Except that it doesn't work. My feelings about this have changed, but I can't really say what I feel. I remember at the time I felt disgusted and afraid and confused. What was he doing? Was it wrong what he did? Did I have the right to push him back? Wouldn't that be like an accusation? But it scared me. There was this vibe... this instinctive sense that what he did was one step further from what he had done before, the thing only the two of us knew, about what was really going on. That's what he did. Moving his fenceposts millimeter by millimeter onto my territory. I felt more violated by every millimeter he invaded me, but what if that intrusion, that crossing of boundaries, is not visible to anyone else?
Will they accuse me of being paranoid?
If I accuse and they don't believe me, it will change my life forever. And it will give him free range, because I have been publicly discredited.
Do I have to wait for something worse to happen, do I have to wait for him to bulldozer down my house so people believe me? My family thought he was joking and goofing around. That's what it had to be when he did it in front of my folks, right?
I was terrified and I felt paralyzed. I did everything I could to stay away from him, but that wasn't easy. If I stopped visiting grannie, there would be questions asked. If I refused to take his gifts, there would be questions asked, and I would be accused of being an ungrateful brat, but with every gift I took I felt like he paid me, I felt like I owed him.

Today I still feel queasy sometimes when someone gives me gifts, because I feel I owe, because I feel this way I relinquish some rights over my life, my body. I try to fight this foolishness consciously, but it has been burnt into me.

Today I just feel confusion… there was turmoil, but it has ceased ever since I started vomiting this into my blog. Probably a good thing, then. I don't know what to feel anything about him. Hatred seems so energy-consuming, requiring so much effort… I get waves of them, but most of the time it is just disdain. I despise him. He is dead, and I believe he is punished... I doubt he ever regretted what he did. And I don't give a shit whether he may have been abused as a kid or whatever may have caused him to turn into a child-predating bastard. I have been abused, and you don't see me passing it on. I wanna de-ball anyone who makes the slightest dodgy move towards a child.

I don’t know what to feel anymore, because the event is so far in the past, and maybe because I have completely detached myself from it. It feels like it happened to someone else. It did, really. It happened to that other kid that I used to be. I feel confused these days. I noticed something was wrong because of this insane confusion, because I feel paralysed, wanting one thing and fearing it at the same time. Not even fearing it. Just fearing what I have become, fearing my response, fearing the consequence of my inability to let anyone get emotionally and physically close to me. Fearing that I’ll never be ok again, because my body, my soul, has taken a life of its own. Does the body have memory? Mine does, because it reminds me whenever I don’t want to be reminded.

I crave intimacy, I like hugging - but only as long as I can trust, as long as I am in control. But I lose control every time and I can never determine the turning point from being in the arms of a sweet guy and loving every second of it to shrinking back from the monster I have made.

I keep thinking about what was the worst. What drove me to depression, to the one suicide attempt. I think it was that no one heard me. No one listened. That I screamed inside, and I was punished for it: It's because of that that I felt worthless. I was invisible.
Hell I told teachers what was happening. I told in so many ways. I spoke about HIM coming on to me in a class when the teacher warned about abusers. They never did anything about it. And why the hell would a 14-year-old start writing a book about sexual abuse? It's crazy, I always felt like I am a sicko for writing about it - like something is wrong with me. But the truth is, I had no other way of coping at the time.

I tried to understand what was going on because I thought understanding the mechanics of abuse will help me deal with it, will negate its effects.
But I was wrong. All it did was distance me from it intellectually. It didn’t empower me. There is a problem. When you are 12-13, there is nothing you can do to protect yourself. You may know in your own mind that what is going on is wrong. But if no one else believes you, or takes you seriously, what can you do? And if everyone else seems to believe that everything is fine and dandy, then eventually you start believing it yourself... or rather, you start to believe that you shouldn't have these feelings of disgust and fury and shock and hatred... and pain, foremost, because you are wrong in feeling them, because what he does isn't a bad thing.

Or even if it is, I shouldn't "overreact" to it. It's my problem if it hurts me... it's my fault... is that what life today has come to? Your emotions are not a response anymore but they are your responsibility to keep in check. Heh, actually that is quite Victorian.

I couldn't carry that weight. I couldn't carry the weight of accusing him of molesting us when he did it in front of my parents, and they never realised what was going on. I was convinced (and still am) they would believe I was overreacting. What he did was so quietly moving the boundaries that no one noticed... that it confused me, as well, that it was only my body, my instinct, something less conscious that screamed at me and set off all my alarm bells... but I was too confused to know what to do, and so I never defended myself.
But I know if I hadn't stayed away from him, and if she hadn't defended herself, something “serious” would have happened eventually. Serious as in unambiguous. And he would have made us believe that we had wanted it, that we should have told him to stop, that it was our responsibility.

And there was something else as well. I couldn't carry the weight of what would have happened to my grannie, had I spoken about it. She was old at that time, and she had suffered from moving from her home of 40 years, and it had affected her health badly. She was fragile, and I was afraid that telling her and everyone that her best friend was abusing her granddaughters would kill her. And I still believe it would have. Would it be worth taking the risk, especially when I wasn't even quite sure myself at the time what the hell he was doing - even though I knew deep down? When you are that age, you just listen to so many other voices rather than your own, simply because you are confused.
She was more assertive, perhaps because she wasn't in that puberty confusion yet, perhaps because she had a healthier self-esteem, perhaps she wasn't in that mental swamp of having to recognise sexual boundaries yet, and of the implications it carried. All she knew was that she didn't like what he did, and pretty much told him to fuck off.

But I was confused as hell, and I tried to understand. And I knew I may never be able to defend my case. I know what he did NOW, because I can see it with the judgment of an adult, but I couldn't back then. And that formed my understanding of my feeling's validity.

I am invisible, and I am not safe.
If something happens to me, no one will be there to protect me or even care.
Am I lovable?
The most persistent experience is that men may be interested sexually, but never enough to love me. There is always someone else who’s better. It is so consistent, what else am I to believe?
I love those that I can never have, that treat me like a human being, those loves that are free of any sexual notion.
My body has become my enemy, it promises me love by its means, or at least closeness, cheap closeness, but it brings me nothing but pain. It’s been like that for so long, I can’t believe anything else.
The bread of my life has turned dry, tasteless and stale, bread that is too hard to chew. My life tastes like flat cider. I feel autistic, nothing can touch me, nothing reaches me even if I desperately want it to.
My outer shell does so on a level that has no roots, that is not conencted to my core, to elicit normal behaviour, to function, but nothing feels genuine.

What it comes down to is that understanding all about the "physical laws" behind a punch of a fist will not make it hurt less. Self-knowledge, understanding how your mind works, cannot save you... you have to be a master over your mind, your soul, know your every niche, corner, circuit... and I cannot even master the 12-year-old in me that is banging against my door.

So I wrote. There was this girl created in my mind, Elaine. She was clear as crystal, because she was alive, and she had a life of her own. I wrote about it because Elaine is my alter ego, in some ways... but she is saved in my place, because she is lovable. I can justify her being saved, and that gives me some sort of redemption, through her, because we share the same pain.
Elaine is not my parasite, I am hers. Hell, there isn't much to feed on in me, unless you like tar.

And Scott is her savior, the person who listens, stops, the person who reverses the effects, the person to give absolution, to release her of the sense of guilt. Elaine went through so much more - because I felt I could only justify it that way. Because I doubted what happened to me, but Elaine could not be doubted.

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