I'm only asking this because I'm curious if I made the right decision or even a common decision. These thoughts were drug to the surface by a previous post made by __modernlove .
A little background that should have no triggers: Let's dive right into it. While I was a child, somewhere between the ages of 8 and 12, I was sexually assaulted almost nightly and raped a few times by my step-father at the time. The timeline isn't accurate because, honestly, I don't remember everything or hardly anything. My therapists have come to that approximate timeline based on factors I haven't asked about because it's something I don't care to ponder on. I hated this man. I was afraid of him. My mother found out because I wrote a letter to CPS (Child Protective Services), never intending to send it, and she found the letter hidden in a dresser drawer. I believe I may have been 12 or 13 at the time she confronted me, all the while not showing a sign of beleif, with the man who harmed me sitting in the same room while we had this conversation. She stayed married to him for some time. Again, not sure how long. But the abuse stopped, and I didn't care to speak with him. A few years later they divorced, ridding me of seeing him. He remarried and the only mention of him was for my little brother, who was his one and only child, who visited him at least twice a year.
I never spoke of it. I didn't care to. I don't think I even knew what to do at that time. I told my first serious boyfriend that I had been abused, but never in detail. I've also told my husband about it, but again, haven't gone into much except why I get uncomfortable with certain things. I have recently, because of this group, started to get couseling for it and trying to deal with it. In all other sessions my previous therapists only know that it happend, not what or how. Either way, on to the current thought.
The issue: My most recent therapist brought up something I never thought about. What if this guy continues to harm other people? I never pressed charges because I had no support, my own mother didn't beleive me and my father couldn't be found. It just got swept under the rug. Then he was gone. Then he had a life, he had another wife, a dog and a house. Who was I to drudge all this crap up that no one would beleive just to do what justice couldn't. To ruin him. I know he never touched my sister. She told me of some abuse that I already knew of, and I asked her. She said he never did anything like it. And then there's my youner brother, the son of this man. He's a happy kid and enjoys seeing is father. I doubt anything is happening. But I never did anything. It's been a long time. I'm 21 in a two months. 8+ years have gone by. But since I'm finally taking steps to rectify myself due to the situation, shouldn't I prevent it from happening?
My decision: I've chosen to do nothing. I don't think I should ruin this guys life for my petty emotions nearly 10 years after the act. I don't even know all of what happend. How am I supposed to supply dates or times, to re-live this if I can't do it in a secure location already? I always thought I made the right choice in not doing anything because then I was too messed up to know any better, and now I think it's too late and I'd just look like the bad person here. Plus, my younger brother is happy. I wouldn't be screwing with only one life here. Many are in the web. And now I wonder if it was the right choice, and if it still is?
How many of you have confronted the world and tried or succeeded to put someone away for thier crime? How'd you get through it? Would you now do something if it might make a difference? I'm frightend that I made a bad choice. That there is someone out there living through this nightmare because I was too selfish. But on the other hand I'm terrified of how this will affect my life if I change my mind. I have too many problems already to try and do legal issues. I don't think I could survive. Am I in the wrong? Am I the minority in this group?
It has been 7 years since he started, 5 since it stopped.
I don't exactly know what I want out of this meeting, but I just feel like I have to do it.
At the opening ceremony for Take Back the Night, the DA (a male) was thanking several people in the community that enabled this day to be possible. At the end he said (slightly paraphrased), "I especially want to thank the young woman who sat across my desk from me earlier this week. She told her story with such dignity and courage, even through the pain. It is people like her who make my job worth doing."
And I was pissed that he wasn't talking about me. I hadn't had that courage to sit before the DA and tell MY story. I so wanted to be that woman. So I've sat on this for two weeks...two weeks and five years. I don't think I have a case. But I need to hear that from them. I have no evidence. My scars are all internal. ( Collapse )
This has been x-posted to 4 survivor communities, so I apologize if you see this more than once, I'm really looking for some help. I am looking for someone who has gone through the legal process who would be willing to talk w/ me on AIM. I have a lot of questions and I don't have a lawyer yet. I think I'm going to do this, I live in Oregon, I will be 23 next April and the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse here is until the age of 24. I am looking for someone who may have a similar experience (I was abused around the ages of 4-6 I think) and the perpetrator was a neighbor (a teenage boy who lived at the house I stayed at when my mom was working).
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