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A secret that I've been ashamed of for a really long time

Discussion in 'General Support and Advice' started by Destin, Jun 24, 2018.

  1. Destin

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    The only people who know this are my sister, boyfriend, and one person on this site I told last week in a PM. After telling the person on this site and my boyfriend it brought up a lot of bad feelings and I've realized keeping it a secret is just making me feel worse. So this post is to try getting over my fear of other people knowing. I don't want to be ashamed anymore of what I had no control over.

    I'm about to turn 22. When I was 13 I was sexually abused and assaulted by an older boy who was 16. It happened repeatedly over the course of a year. I had just moved to a new state, and it was hard to find new friends at that age because everyone considered me the outsider new kid. He was the only one that was nice to me at first and we hung out together all the time for months. One day we were at his house drinking alcohol when his parents weren't home, and we started talking about girls (I thought I was straight at the time). He found out I hadn't ever actually seen much nudity because of my strict religious upbringing. He told me he had porn hidden in the bathroom he could show me, so we went there and he gave me pictures of girls to look at. After a few minutes he told me there were other things he wanted to show me, and locked the door. He told me to take my clothes off but I said no, so he said it again while taking his off and I still said no because I was scared. He was drunk and got angry, then started hitting me hard until I agreed to do what he wanted because I was afraid of being hurt more. He pushed me down and did sexual things to me that I didn't want and was terrified of. Afterwards I had no way to get home without him driving so I had to stay until he was sober again.

    He was really apologetic about it and promised to make it up to me, made me promise not to tell anyone what happened because we would both get in trouble since boys touching other boys was a sin and we were in a super religious area. I agreed, and we kept hanging out like normal for a few weeks, we had a lot of fun like he said we would to make up for it. Until one day while driving he pulled over on the side of the road in a secluded area and told me he needed me to take off my clothes again. I cried and asked him not to do it again but he said he didn't have a girlfriend and I would understand one day when I was older. He threatened to hurt me again if I didn't, so I did what he wanted and got in the back seat naked with him, he got on me and did what he needed to again.

    This continued happening for the rest of the year. We would do normal things as friends and would have a good time, but then he would want me to take off my clothes sometimes and whenever I said no he would beat me up until I did. I couldn't tell anyone what was happening - I didn't want my religious parents to hate me for it and I was so afraid of anyone finding out. Worse, after a while I started to feel attracted to him and secretly wanted to touch him back. Even now I'm kind of worried people on here will be upset that it's perpetuating the stereotype of people becoming gay after being abused.

    My family ended up moving away to a new state, and I never saw him again. I later learned that a year after I left he died of a drug overdose. I really hope it wasn't suicide. I felt so guilty thinking it was and that he killed himself because I left and he had no one to explore himself with sexually anymore. I know he sounds like a bad person, but he was my friend too and he was really nice most of the time. I hated him for what he did but I wouldn't have wanted my friend to die. I see now that he was probably just confused and scared struggling with his sexuality in an extremely anti-gay town - he probably thought forcing me to do things with him was the only way he would ever get to have sex with another boy. I forgive him for everything that happened.

    I put it to the back of my mind and stopped thinking about it for years, but I can't deny that it has affected me a lot throughout my life. What he did emasculated me and made me feel weak and helpless. I repressed what I had begun feeling for boys and started sleeping with girls at 16, and it made me feel like a real man. I became obsessed with having sex with as many girls as I could to feel dominant and in control so I never had to feel helpless and taken advantage of again. I became a severe alcoholic and used drugs to escape the constant anxiety and fear of being hurt and abused by someone again. Even now that I've accepted being gay it still affects my attractions. I'm drawn to guys bigger and stronger than me because I want to feel protected so no one can hurt me again.

    I'll never be able to tell my family what happened - they already don't like me dating a guy, if I told them about this they'd think what he did turned me gay and would try to turn me straight again like they have already tried a few times. My sister only knows because I was having bad nightmares about it as a kid and confessed what happened to her while she was comforting me. I don't know if I'll ever fully get over it, but I just don't want to hide it and be ashamed of it anymore.

    Now you all know my biggest secret that I've hidden from everyone in my life for 9 years.
     
  2. BothWaysSecret

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    Destin, I can't even begin to imagine what it's like to go through this...and at such a young age. It's just depressing.

    You are a brave individual. To keep that secret mostly to yourself for so long was a heavy burden, I'm sure. I don't think anything will ever fully get rid of the pain it caused you, but talking about it is a great first step perhaps in easing the troubles it has brought on. And you know I'm always here for you as well, if you ever want to chat.
     
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  3. normalwolverine

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    If it were me starting a thread like this one, I wouldn't come back to it and read comments--that's just how I am (I do that a lot, anyways, when I respond to threads, just so people know). So, I understand if you don't, or do but don't respond.

    But the thing I always think about when people try to connect being gay, bi or lesbian to having been molested is how common being molested is. I really would estimate that all of us know at least one person who has been molested or raped before turning 18, and the majority of those people are straight or identify as straight. We hear stories from celebrities, or read them, and most of them identify as straight.

    When I was a kid--about 9 years old--my male cousin tried to have sex with me. I came from a family that was really weird about what we could and could not do--I could never go anywhere, could never do sleepovers (go to them or have them) or any "normal" kid stuff...but I could listen to the raunchiest rap music, drink alcohol, look at Playboy magazine and watch porn on TV. Point being...I knew a lot about sex at 9 years old, which is probably more normal now than when I was growing up. When I read stories about young kids being molested or assaulted, a lot of the time they say they didn't know what was happening. But I knew, and it probably saved me. I was trying to go to sleep but wasn't asleep yet, and my cousin was trying to take advantage of the situation. So, I pretended to be asleep and came up with the idea to just jump up and run to another room in the house, kind of to catch my cousin off guard so he couldn't stop me. And I did, and my sister was in the other room. So, I told her about it.

    Other than maybe my closest friend and maybe one ex, she's the only one who knows. The last time I saw my cousin, which was a few years ago, I think, he looked at me funny...like he was checking my body out. He did like this "Whooo" thing and looked from top to bottom, like guys do when they think a woman is hot and has a great body (yes, he is from Mississippi, while we're on stereotypes). And he did it in front of my parents. Ugh! So gross. I can't remember if I told my closest friend this story, or if I told her the next one (I only told her one of these stories, I think)...

    Before that situation with my cousin, my parents had me going to this babysitter that would babysit a lot of kids. I don't know how old I was, but I think I was 4 years old. I don't remember very much at all about it, and I wouldn't know anything about any abuse if it weren't for my family. The babysitter used to beat kids, apparently. I had classmates in school who went to this same babysitter, and they remembered it. My sister (same one from the other story) went with me one day when she was sick and couldn't go to school, and she saw the lady hit me...and she took me and we left and she told my parents.

    I mentioned in that thread about "useless" degrees that I got a psych degree. I remember in one of my psych classes, the professor was talking about "repression" and how she doesn't believe people really repress memories. I remember just sitting there like......??? I mean, I don't remember anything about the physical abuse and don't want to. I remember silly, pointless stuff about going to that babysitter. I repressed a lot of bad memories from childhood (my cousin, being bullied in elementary and junior high school), but they all came back at some point--except for the physical abuse that other kids remembered, which means I was old enough to remember it, too. I remember the thing with my cousin in another psych class, actually, about cognition.

    I really don't know how these things, other than being bullied, affect me today because--unlike with most things--I don't want to think about it. I think everything to death and analyze everything, but not these two incidents. I told my last girlfriend about one or both of these, and she asked me if I wanted to talk about it and I said no. That was the end of it. I do know that if I had told my parents about my cousin, nothing would have happened except for me getting embarrassed and their making excuses. My parents are sexist, and at the time he was the only boy in our family (or in the part of the family we saw with some regularity), which was and is full of girls/women. Any time he came for a visit, they were all about him. I'm so lucky I don't have brothers. My cousin is garbage today; the whole time I was in grad school, he was on house arrest (3 years).

    But yeah, I liked girls well before that ever happened--it has nothing to do with anything.
     
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  4. Biguyjosh

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    Destin, you have nothing to be ashamed of and I hope you feel somewhat better that you shared and it's no longer a secret. Many people, I think, are raised that that kind of stuff is bad and somehow the victims fault. Hopefully you're sharing will help others realize that if it happened to them that it's nothing to be ashamed about.
     
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  5. SemiCharmedLife

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    You are amazingly brave for sharing your story. While I don't know what it's like to have personally experienced what you've been through, I know there are others here who have, and I can tell you that nobody on here (or anywhere) who's worth a damn will judge or blame you for it.
     
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