Boken in hard places

I wrote this piece, Broken in Hard Places, out of a sense of profound dismay. Sexual abuse breaks a man in places that cannot be easily identified or openly discussed.
The sexual abuse of men is not a topic that we as a society are comfortable to discuss. Over and over again, bias and stereotypes direct the conversation. Complicate the scenario further with the perpetrator being female, and on top of that, a care-giver, a family member, a mother–it is simply not something we are prepared to talk about honestly and openly.
This makes it all the more difficult to deal with. The smirks, the accusations of, “You’re a liar,” or, “That sort of thing just doesn’t happen,” drive the issue inward with disastrous results. The emotion, mental and physical damage caused by this level of abuse and betrayal can only be dealt with in an atmosphere of acceptance and non-judgment.
“Who would judge a man who has been abused?” you might ask. Almost universally, men who have been abused will tell you, “Everyone.” That’s why men don’t talk about it. We live our lives broken in hard places, broken in places not seen.

 

15 Responses
  1. Ann Jorgensen

    I shared this on my social media accounts. As a woman who was sexually abused I know how hard it is to break the silence, and I have believed for a long time that it would be even harder for men. I do have male friends who have been sexually abused, so I do want to help share this message. Thanks for making this point.

  2. MS~Royally Blessed

    Like the previous poster, I too am a woman who was sexually abused and as excruciating it has been for me, I cannot begin to fathom what a boy or man would have to do to survive it mentally. I knew it happens, to children regardless of gender. Tyler Perry on Oprah was not an eye opener. But to have it dismissed as petty or not believed at all, I do want you to know I have been there as mine happened in my immediate family. My oldest brother of the five of us, 6 yrs. older than 7 yr. old me when it started and it went on for 7 years, until he moved out. Every one of my siblings knows, 2 of them are younger sisters who were never touched but none of them knew until we were grown. For years I tried to pretend it did not happen and the anger ruined my life, 2 marriages, although it made me the most vigilant mother I know, messed up as I was. So I started refusing to be at any function he was at. My parents do not know, because my father was beyond strict and I lived in fear of him. My mother never showed us affection, cold, distant and would have believed their golden first born over me without doubt, always took my father’s side even if it meant her blatantly lying. My 2nd oldest brother told me to “just get over it already”. Is this what he would tell his own daughter if it had happened to her? One sister has said “You have too much drama in your life for me to deal with”. That leaves my baby sister who actually does care what I went thru. My father, with age & health issues, has realized how he mistreated us and lives with guilt and shame of his own but makes a point to make sure I know he loves me. My mother…not a lot of change there. I like to think my father would believe me now but at his age (77), I don’t want it to kill him or the kind heart he has found. I have been struck with MS and inherited my mother’s faulty cardiac genes. I am one out of 5 that never smoked or drank and I was dealt this as well. All of my other siblings are in great health. My sanity is my current husband who gave me the courage to “confront” HIM via email, telling him how he had forever changed who I am or could have been, telling him that I did not want to see him or hear from him again (he’d call about family things like nothing ever happened…he is still a huge source of pride to my dad as he is a deputy sheriff, another thing that strikes fear in my heart), telling him that I prayed every night that what he did, he did because we were not allowed extracurricular activities, he could not date, we were at school and home again period, and that I was the only one. He had ample opportunity on his job and he had 2 daughters…they are the terror and guilt I’ve lived with. So I told him that if I found out that he had touched my nieces, public scandal would not even begin to describe the hell he would befall his idyllic life. Both girls have turned into very well adjusted, happy women who love him as a girl should love their father and are self confident and strongwilled, even as girls i feel they’d have told someone. They are very close to their mother fortunately. Even thru a very ugly divorce and custody battle, they seem to love both parents very much. I have watched closely for signs of anything that might suggest otherwise. I could not live with myself if my silence sent them into this hell we live in. You are not alone and I wish I had words of wisdom to impart. But no words can replace innocence lost and a life forever changed. I do know that anger will eat you alive and only gives more power to such a horrific thing. There is no forgiveness or forgetting but there is living in the present and refusing to allow someone to take that from you too. He took 30+ yrs. from me. He’ll not get another second of my precious life. A Maya Angelou quote that does
    not make it all better but has given me peace at times ~ “I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.” I will pray for you and all of the boys and men who live in silence, for escape from the anger, for fair and just treatment and equality in this horrendous tragedy to any child, teen or adult regardless of gender, for justice and for peace within…something I do find often but that also escapes me just when I dare to let myself feel whole and I have no doubt, it always will. God bless.

    1. theAuthor

      Please download the free abridged version and let me know what you think. Also if you like the work, would you be interested in being apart of a small team of people reviewing the final copy before it goes to print ? If so please email me at my personal email nwtauthor@icloud.com -TA

      1. MS-RBlessed- thank you for your post. I don’t know that I have ever read a more articulate discription of what abuse does to a family.
        The individual hell that is life long after abuse is truly most time beyond words. Your words capture many thing and I just wanted to tell you how much they touched me!
        I struggle to express the pain/grief/sorrow that abuse has left me with.
        My health is being effected now @ 52 from the weight of untold / unexpressed anger and sadness.
        Bless you so much for having the strength to speak your truth.

      2. Wow! We are very similar. Mine was my Uncle who also was abused by his father. I grew up hyperviligent to watch for signs as well with my children. We try to believe the best in people that we are their last abuse. I have yet verbally confronted my ex husband who had sexually and physically abused our son. I went through our lawyers for our divorce with full disclosure on my evidence by picture descriptions. He ultimately signed off on any visitations and then hightailed it to the Midwest.

        I want to ask anyone here if you knew your ex has remarried AGAIN would you reach out to the new wife to warn her????

  3. theAuthor

    3B… I would…i warned my sister one i came to understand and once i saw them starting to groom her children, her little boy to repeat what they did to me. They left my sister alone…well she was left alone if i was prepared to pay the price for it, which I did, repeatedly

  4. What a deeply moving telling of your story.
    I have shared this on my page, “Whispers From My Heart.” I encourage women and men who have been sexually abused. As a survivor myself, I understand that brokenness in hard places (that is such a profound line). Even though I am female, I understand the non-belief. It took years for me to find belief and validation.
    Thank you for your openness and willingness to share.
    God bless you!

  5. McKechnie (Mack)

    I am studying at UMKC (University of Missouri Kansas City), I am a political science and a sociology major. My field of interest in sociology is in LGBTQIA issue of which it looks like you work fall under. I like what I have read above and very interested in where I could get more? I know that myself and one of my professors would love to read more of your work!

  6. theAuthor

    Have you looked at our social media sites? And have you downloaded the free ebook that is available on this site? The work is focused on the impact of sexual abuse and pornography on boys as they grow into manhood.

  7. Michelle Badour

    r I am a victim, I am a woman, as have been a daughter and son of mine. The affect of the abuse to my son was such a hard thing for the family as a whole, stigma and stereotype, played definitely into our situation as my son was assaulted by his father, that really confused him as to his sexuality. The red flags of my husband didn’t help me figure it out soon enough ether I thought for a long time if my ex would assault it would be my daughters so I watched the whole time my husband treated my son like he was a piece of trash, thus made me think he hated him, when my daughter than was assaulted I saw signs of sexual abuse in my son thinking it was the same perp, I spent years still convinced my ex hated our son, I went on chasing the wrong demon, my sons life became our unbearable nightmare it wasn’t till this year my son was able to open up, and told me the truth, and told me he thought I gave up on him, which he now understands I didn’t it just was so confused for me.

Leave a Reply