Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The Effects of Rape & Sexual Abuse on the Male #childabuse #survivors @MSurvivorsTrust



Slowly but surely, the common myth held that sexual abuse/rape happens to women only is fading, but when a man is sexually assaulted or raped, and grows up believing that myth, he feels even more isolated and alone. This page tackles some of the issues that are rarely talked about, yet have a huge impact on almost all male survivors, and if left unsaid and sorted out, can stop them from recovering fully, leaving a residue of bad feelings and fears behind. Some of the things that can trigger you off and leave you feeling as if you're back at the point of being abused are as follows. 

The smell of others, especially aftershave or other body smells, can cause you to flashback and trigger bad memories Many male survivors state that when having sex with a partner, that they feel dirty, and unclean once they have reached ejaculation, and this is connected to the sight, feel and sensation of seeing their semen, which reminds them of being abused, and that alone can ruin any sexual relationships they may have.

You may also feel wrong, bad and dirty, so will need to bathe often, usually after having sex with partners, and if masturbating, will only do so as a function, not for pleasure, because the sensation and good feelings have been taken away and you're left feeling dirty and 'wrong' again. There's also the fact that you can get obsessed with masturbation , not just once a day, but several times a day, which can increase when you feel stressed, lonely, screwed up, etc. 

Many male survivors hide behind the fact that they remain non sexual, and in doing so, are not seen as being sexual beings, Others eat, drink, misuse drugs to stop people getting too close to them. By taking on the work that’s needed, you can remove the ghosts of the past and can regain control of your life

Male Survivors share many of the same feelings of female sexual assault survivors. Common feelings such as; 

BODY IMAGE* Do you feel at home in your body?* Do you feel comfortable expressing yourself sexually with another?* Do you feel that you are a part of your body or does your body feel like a separate entity?* Have you ever intentionally and physically hurt yourself?* Do you find it difficult to listen to your body?

EMOTIONS * Do you feel out of control of your feelings?* Do you feel you sometimes don't understand all the feelings you are experiencing?* Are you overwhelmed by the wide range of feelings you have?

RELATIONSHIPS * What's your expectations of your partner in a relationship?* Find it too easy to trust others?* Find it too hard to trust anyone?* Find it difficult in making commitments?* Still feel alone, even though in a relationship?* Is it hard for you to allow others to get close to you?* Are you in a relationship with some-one who reminds you of the abuse, or who is no good for you?

SELF-CONFIDENCE * Do you find it difficult to love yourself?* Do you have a hard time accepting yourself?* Are you ashamed of yourself?* Do you have expectations of yourself that aren't realistic? 

SEXUALITY * Do you enjoy sex, really enjoy it?* Do you find it difficult to express yourself sexually?* Do you find yourself using sex to get close to someone?* End up having sex because it's expected of you?* Does sex make you feel dirty?* Are you "present" during sex? 

MAJOR SEXUAL SYMPTOMS OF SEXUAL ABUSE 
1. Difficulties in becoming aroused and feeling sensations

2. Sex feels like an obligation

3. Sexual thoughts and images that are disturbing

4. Inappropriate sexual behaviors or sexual compulsivity

5. Inability to achieve orgasm or other orgasmic difficulties

6. Erection problems or ejaculatory difficulty

7. Feeling dissociated while having sex

8. Detachment or emotional distance while having sex

9. Being afraid of sex or avoiding sex

10. Guilt, fear, anger, disgust or other negative feelings when being touched 

EXISTING EFFECTS ON MALE SURVIVORS. 
Listed below are some of the current effects that sexual abuse, and after-effects it has upon a male Survivor. 

Nightmares, (Intense, violent, sexual) - A real fear that everyone is a potential attacker. Intense shame. - Intense anger. - Intense guilt. - Fear in expressing anger/difficulties in being angry. A need to be in control. - A need to pretend they are not in control. A fear of being seen/fear of exposure.- Running away from people/situations. A fear of intimacy. - "Avoidism". - Memories of physical pain. - Intense sexual flashbacks. Intruding thoughts. - Sexual dysfunction. - Asexual feelings. - Feeling unreal. - Self doubt. - Jealousy. - Envy. Sexual acting out. - Fear of men. - Fear of women. - Fear of speaking out. - Inability to relax. Disconnection with feelings. - Feeling alone. - Poor choice of partners. - "Out of body" experiences. Linking abuse to love. - Keeping secrets. - Forgetting childhood experiences. - Detached from reality. Inability to comfort their children. - Feeling inadequate. - Unable to accept compliments. - Low self esteem. Isolation. - Addictions/crime. - No emotions. - Fear of others motives. - Inability to say no. - Fear of rules.

COMMON REACTIONS TO SEXUAL ABUSE/RAPE
Emotional Shock: Feeling numb. Being able to stay so calm? Unable to cry.

Disbelief and/or Denial: Did it really happen? Why me? Maybe I just imagined it. It wasn't really abusive.

Embarrassment: What will people think? I can't tell my family or friends.

Shame or Guilt: Feeling as if it's your fault, or you should've been able to stop it. If only you had...

Depression: How are you going to get through the day. Feeling so tired! It feels so hopeless.

Powerlessness: Will you ever feel in control again?

Disorientation: You don't even know what day it is. You keep forgetting things.

Flashbacks: Re-living the assault! Keep seeing and feeling like it's happening again.

Fear: Scared of everything. Can't sleep, Having nightmares. Afraid to go out. Afraid to be alone.

Anxiety: Panic attacks. Can't breathe! Can't stop shaking. Feeling overwhelmed.

Anger: Feel like hurting the person who attacked you!

Physical Stress: Stomach (or head or back) aches all the time. Feeling jittery and don't feel like eating.

UNIQUE ISSUES FACED BY MALE SURVIVORS 
There is great denial of the fact that men are sexually abused. Other than in prisons, most of us don't ever hear about the topic of male sexual abuse. The need to deny is often deeply rooted in the mistaken belief that men are immune to being victimised, that they should be able to fight off any attacker if they are truly a "real man." Another related 'belief' is that men can't be forced into sex. These mistaken beliefs allow many men to feel safe and invulnerable, and to think of sexual abuse as something that only happens to women. Unfortunately, these beliefs also increase the pain that is felt by a male survivor of sexual abuse. These 'beliefs' leave the male survivor feeling isolated and ashamed. Below are some of the unique problems and concerns that male survivors do experience: For most men the idea of being a victim is extremely hard to handle. Boys are raised to believe that they should be able to defend themselves against all odds, or that he should be willing to risk his life or severe injury to protect his pride and self-respect. How many movies or TV shows depict the hero prepared to fight a group of huge guys over an insult or name-calling? Surely then, men are supposed to fight to the death over something like unwanted sexual advances...right? These beliefs about "manliness" and "masculinity" are deeply ingrained in many men and lead to intense feelings of guilt, shame and inadequacy for the male survivor of sexual abuse. Some male survivors even question whether they deserved to be sexually abused because, as they think that they failed to defend themselves. Male survivors see their assault as a loss of manhood and feel disgusted with themselves for not "fighting back." These feelings are normal but the thoughts attached to them are not true. Remind yourself that you did what seemed best at the time to survive--there's nothing un-masculine about that." As a result of guilt, shame or anger some men may punish themselves by exhibiting self-destructive behaviour after being sexually abused. For some men, this means increased alcohol or drug use. For others, it means increased aggressiveness, like arguing with friends or co-workers or even picking fights with strangers. Some men pull back from relationships and wind up feeling more and more isolated. Male survivors may also develop sexual difficulties after being sexually abused. It may be difficult to resume sexual relationships or start new ones because sexual contact may trigger flashbacks, memories of the abuse, or just plain bad feelings. It can take time, so don't pressure yourself to be sexual before you're ready. For heterosexual men, sexual abuse almost always causes some confusion or questioning about their sexuality. Since many believe that only gay men are sexually abused, a heterosexual survivor may believe that he must be gay or that he will become gay. Furthermore, abusers often accuse their victims of enjoying the sexual abuse, leading some survivors to question their own experiences. Being sexually abused has nothing to do with sexual orientation, past, present or future. People do not "become gay" as a result of being sexually abused. However, there are certain issues that are different for men:

Concerns about sexuality and/or masculinity

Medical procedures

Reporting crime to law enforcement agencies

Telling others

FINDING RESOURCES AND SUPPORT No matter what is said or done, no one "asks for" or deserves to be assaulted. Sexual abuse/rape is nothing to do with someone's present or future sexual orientation. Sexual abuse comes from violence and power, nothing less. Unfortunately, the health profession are reluctant to recognise that men can be sexually assaulted. This also includes the Police Forces, though that is slowly improving at last This attitude, combined with ignorance affects the way they treat men who have been raped/sexually abused, often using a stereotyped view of masculinity, rather than focus on the physical assault, the crime becomes the focus of the medical exam or police investigation.
 
 

WHAT YOU CAN DORecognise that men and boys can and are sexually assaulted.

Be aware of the biases and myths concerning sexual abuse.

Recognise that stereotypes create narrow definitions of masculinity, and make it even harder for male survivors to disclose their rape/abuse.

As individuals and as a community, that we work harder to combat and challenge those attitudes.

It is important that male rape survivors have support, and are allowed to make their own decisions about what course of action to take. All too often, they feel forced to make statements or act against their abusers, without having had the time and space to think it through. I never advocate they prosecute their abusers, I suggest they perhaps begin their personal journey to recover from the traumas they are left with.

NOTHING JUSTIFIES SEXUAL ABUSE!It doesn't have to be this way though, you can overcome the issues listed and can recover. Just in case you need a reminder;

Men of all ages, and backgrounds are subjected to sexual assaults and rape.

Offenders are heterosexual in 98% of the cases.

Both heterosexual and homosexual men get raped.

Rape occurs in all parts of society.

Men are less likely to report being raped.

A PERSONAL VIEW.The belief that the male population is the stronger sex, especially when it comes to sex, is deeply ingrained, believed, and supported within our culture, but not all men and boys are physically or emotionally strong, which explains why there are male "victims" of sexual abuse/rape. Male child sexual abuse is perpetrated by both men and women, of any sexual persuasion, with no regard towards the "victims" sexuality or safety. It holds scant regard for who we are, and is about gaining power and control over the "victim".As children, we are placed in the care of our parents/guardians, family, family friends, schools, and more often than not, sometimes strangers. The 'Danger Stranger' campaign focused on the danger of strangers, with the intent of scaring children into not trusting strangers, but plainly ignored the fact that parents, siblings, family members, and those other "nice people" especially those people known as the "Pillars of Society", are much more likely to sexual abuse children. As a result of our sexual abuse, we grow up with many mistaken beliefs, and many Survivors have fallen into a myriad of roles that include alcoholism, crime, depression, self harming, people pleasing, hardworking, etc. But, far from being powerless, we have drawn upon considerable reserves of inner strength to deal with, adjust and cope with the invasion of our bodies and minds. 

Our previous actions in dealing with life may not have been what we wanted to do, and may have caused more pain on the way, but surely we have arrived at a time when we all need to face our past, forgive OUR actions, and move away from the guilt, shame and fear that has haunted us for so long. This possibly took many forms, but is something that we all need to forgive ourselves for, as long we don’t intend to ‘return there’. Some thoughts to have plagued male survivors have been “Perhaps I was to blame” “I should have told someone” “I was in the wrong place, at the wrong time” “I deserved it” “Maybe I gave out the wrong signals” “Maybe I’m gay”………,What we don’t want to hear is pity, or told “how awful” “so sad”, “poor little boy” as that concept is dis-empowering and perpetuates pity for the ‘victim’ and we are then seen as “not quite right”. 

We are OK, we are capable of living our lives, and we are more than capable of overcoming the traumas that our abuser(s) left behind. I subscribe to the belief that in order to heal fully you have to face your abusive past, however difficult that may be, but in doing so, you can move on emotionally, forgive your actions, find inner peace, and be the person you want to be, not who 'they' wanted you to be. Please break the silence and demand the right to be recognised! If you want to join, we will support you in your struggle, be 'here' for you when you need us, and help you understand who you are, and what you want to be. The next step is from victim, to SURVIVOR, which is possible. It's not easy, and involves you telling someone else all those deep hidden secrets, but once started,DON’T STOP!

Thanks once more to Steve Bevan at Male Survivors Trust 

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Seasons Greetings #Angel cover by @nicdorian







Spend all your time waiting
for that second chance

for a break that would make it okay
there's always some reason
to feel not good enough

and it's hard at the end of the day
I need some distraction
oh beautiful release
memories seep from my veins
let me be empty

and weightless and maybe
I'll find some peace tonight

in the arms of the angel
fly away from here
from this dark cold hotel room

and the endlessness that you fear
you are pulled from the wreckage
of your silent reverie

you're in the arms of the angel
may you find some comfort here

so tired of the straight line
and everywhere you turn
there's vultures and thieves at your back
and the storm keeps on twisting

you keep on building the lies
that you make up for all that you lack
it don't make no difference
escaping one last time
it's easier to believe in this sweet madness oh
this glorious sadness that brings me to my knees


in the arms of the angel
fly away from here
from this dark cold hotel room
and the endlessness that you fear

you are pulled from the wreckage
of your silent reverie
you're in the arms of the angel
may you find some comfort here
you're in the arms of the angel
may you find some comfort here

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Questions To Consider @MSurvivorsTrust #childabuse #malesurvivors #hope




If a lack of being loved, respected, etc. is a problem, what could you do, in order to feel safer in yourself?

If loss of innocence is a problem, is it likely to prevent you from gaining a perspective that is kinder to you and to those you meet?

If nightmares and the fears attached to them are a problem, what could you do to ensure that you overcome those fears?
What fears do you have that seems to be preventing you from moving on?

What could you do in order those fears?
Do you think that the abuse you survived wasn't as bad as others suffered, therefore you don’t need support and help?

Having started to wake up to the realisation that your life has been affected by the abuse you suffered, in every way imaginable, what are you going to do about it?
There are often deep rooted and hidden secrets that you wouldn’t feel safe talking about, but those are the issues that you have to start talking about, and recover from, otherwise it will remain as a stumbling block to your recovery.

Think about what it is that you need to do in order to ensure you are free from the thoughts that haunt you, and then do something about it.
What could you do to leave behind the negative thoughts, and move forward?

What are your immediate thoughts, and feelings, when faced with a memory of the abuse you suffered?
How hard do you find it to be honest with yourself, and others? Why is that, and where does it come from?

Why do you find it difficult to be free and honest in speech and manner?
Do you avoid having sex, or being intimate, because it reminds you of what happened to you when abused?

What could you do to regain control of your sexual life?
It's your life after all, and the memories that prevent you having or enjoying sex is your abusers way of stopping you live your life, but don't allow them to control you any longer.

It's time for you to recover!

Friday, 18 December 2015

The Dangers Of Isolating Yourself @MSurvivorsTrust #childabuse #malesurvivors



It is so easy to say that you can cope, and have done so many years, but all that does is isolate you again, away from perhaps finally getting the answers to the myriad of questions that have haunted you for so long.
You may even believe that no one cares, no one would ever understand how you feel, and why would anyone want to listen to you, but all those thoughts and beliefs say clearly that you locked into a cycle of isolation and lonliness that will, unless tackled, condem you to silence for the rest of your life.
As almost all abuse, be it child sexual abuse, adult sexual assaults, and including physical, emotional and psychological abuse, takes place in isolation, and many survivors carry that isolation with them into adulthood, avoiding company, talking and associating with others, meanwhile losing out on the common bond that boys and men have, if they're not subjected to abuse.
Having been sexually abused, and made to feel powerless, afraid, hurt, upset, etc. you may still carry those fears into any situation you may find yourself, and still wrongly continue to feel some responsibility for what happened to you.
That includes guilt, in that you feel bad for anything that happens to you or even those around you. You also feel bad about yourself, and who you are or seen as. (Weak, stupid, afraid, nervous,)
Feeling vulnerable, and allowing that feeling to dominate your thoughts makes you shy away from situations that cause you to feel that, imagining or fearing, somewhere deep inside, if you’re not careful, you may be abused and hurt again, even just your feelings.



So, what do you do instead?
  • You avoid making friendships, avoiding any potential dangers that may exist. 
  • You avoid letting people near you, especially partners, just in case they discover who you really are.
  • You do not trust anyone, the last time you did, look what happened.
  • You avoid making mistakes, because if you do, you will be again be seen as vulnerable, and lacking in some way.
  • You allow your abuse to continue to live your life, by letting the fears that has arisen since, control your thoughts.
  • You allow yourself to be controlled by your inactions to say, do or speak about what is really fucking you up.
  • Why live that way, being afraid to say or do what you want to?
  • The abusers forced that silence upon you and maybe that was compounded by others around you, but surely you dont like feeling isolated and alone?
  • It has to be said that in order to heal fully, and to become the person you want and need to be, you have to feel that vulnerability again, in a safe place, in order to become yourself, which can almost be as scary as being abused again, but is a necessary part of the healing you undertake.
  • If anyone tells you that isn't the case, then believe me when I say that unless you do so, you will never fully heal and will always have ghosts that come back to haunt you
    Arising from the above, there is a clear need to have an understanding about the external factors that led to the abuse occurring.
  • Almost all incidents of abuse are physically isolated and acted by one person; therefore it is not surprising, that you may gravitate towards anyone who will give you some attention.
  • More often than not, survivors end up in destructive relationships in early life, which pre-sets the pattern in later life.
  • As this pattern becomes set, you often end up believing that it is a normal role of life, accepts what has happened, and continues to live that life, even though you may not be happy, satisfied or feel good being in that situation.
  • By undertaking a process of healing, it dispels the internal belief that you did something to cause it or even that you didn't do something to prevent it.
  • Everyone wants to be loved, needed, respected and acknowledged, but when abuse takes place, the boundaries become confused, and any defence becomes unclear.
    You can also also remain bound in the memories that haunt you, so you need to find a focus on which to anchor onto.
  • That can be almost anything, but should, without doubt, be something or someone who is able to support you fully, without fail.


    FEELINGS OF REJECTION AND ABANDONMENT.
    All aspects of your daily life are negatively affected by what happened to you when you were abused. Confused? Read on....
    Everything that happens to you is based upon a throwback to previous events in your life, and how you react to those situations.
    It is based upon the split second response that happens when faced with an issue.
    You automatically go into the following thought process;
    MEMORY: Looking back at what happened last time, and what the outcome was, and basing your actions on that.
    THOUGHTS: On what happened last time and what could happen this time.
    FEELINGS: Based on what you felt like at the time, and how much it may have hurt you.
    DECISION: Based upon previous issues, even if this time it calls for a different reaction.
    ACTION/INACTION: Either you repeat the previous behaviour or run away from the issue again.


    All of which leaves you feeling like "you've been here before" and with very little results.
    Negative reactions are bad ones to develop, especially when feeling low, tired, or just a little pissed off with life in general.
    Those emotions arise for many reasons, anytime, anywhere, so try to confine them to where they belong, which is firmly in the past.
    What you are allowing to happen is a previous event, to re-surface again, and "dent" your recovery process.

  • Copyright Male Survivors Trust 

    Wednesday, 16 December 2015

    Speak Out! Break The Silence via @MSurvivorsTrust #childabuse #recovery #malesurvivors



    Why do some male survivors wait so long to speak and break the silence that has surrounded them since they were sexually abused?

    If you have never spoken out before, and wondered why you have waited so long to do something about it, carry on reading and see if the answers come to you.

    Set out below are just some of the reasons given to me, over the past 20 years or more.

    I WAS TO BLAME FOR WHAT HAPPENED, AS I DIDN'T STOP IT, OR TELL SOMEONE WHAT WAS HAPPENING.

    If you had been able to speak out,at the time, you would have done so, and stopped it then, but because of varying reasons as to why you didn't, why judge yourself, as that younger child or adult, and continue to blame yourself? You had no choice in what happened TO you, and therefore did the best you could, at the time, to get through it all.

    IT WAS JUST ME AND MY BROTHER/SISTER MESSING ABOUT.

    Often, sexual abuse is carried out in the family, and far more than is believed, so when its a family member, be that mother, father, sister, brother, aunts, uncles, or grandparents, it can confuse you even more.

    If it was someone who close in age, that causes more issues for you to deal with, as it feels like it should be kept quiet, and not talked about, but if you were to be told, by someone else, that they had been abused by a family member, would you find that easier to deal with? If so, tell yourself again, that the abuse is abuse and you have every right to talk about it and break the silence.

    IT DIDN'T HURT ME, AND THERE WERE PARTS OF IT THAT I ENJOYED.

    That has been said to me so many times, and I always answer it as such: I defy anyone to not react sexually or to enjoy sexual feelings, from being touched sexually. The difference here is that it was sexually abusive, even if done in a 'loving' way, because it was not done by choice. You had no choice and no matter what was said to you at the time, the abusers had the control and power over you, so try and distance yourself from the sexual 'pleasures' you may have had, and consider that it wasn't an issue, you wouldn't be looking for answers as to what happened to you.

    I DIDN'T SAY YES or DIDN'T SAY NO.

    Again, here is the wrongly inherited guilt and shame that stops male survivors from speaking out, in that because you 'took part', you then believe that it was your fault, when it is the person who asked, or coerced you into doing something sexual TO them.

    IT WAS JUST ONCE AND NOT THAT BAD.

    In that case, you would not have a problem with it and would not be reading this page, but as you maybe what you need to do is recognise that it has had a profoudn effect upon you, in many ways, and start to work on those issues, many of which are outlined on other pages on this site.

    HE GOT ME TO DO THINGS TO HIM AND NEVER TOUCHED ME

    That has been said on many occasions, in that some boys are coerced into doing sexual things TO the abuser, and therefore end up thinking that they were abusers, and that by doing so, must be gay or enjoyed doing it.

    If that fits your story, it's easily explained, in that he or they, MADE you do things, in order to trap you into what they wanted, and left you with no escape from the abuse. It has been reported many times that the abuser got more than one child involved and coerced them to be sexual with one other, further compounding guilt and shame.

    IT WAS JUST ME AND MY BROTHER, MESSING AROUND.

    Again, if it was just 'messeing around' you would not have a problem with it, and would have been able to put it behind you, but as you have not done so, maybe you need to look at what was done TO you, and what actual role you played in what happened TO you.

    I WAS TOLD THAT MY MOTHER/FATHER WOULD BE KILLED IF I SAID ANYTHING.

    A typical ploy by abusers is to make threats to ensure that you complhy with their demands, so you can excuse yourself that you failed to speak out at the time, because at least you taking that step now, I hope, by breaking the silence imposed upon you

    This article is Copyright Male Survivors Trust

    Friday, 11 December 2015

    Sabotage During Recovery via @MSurvivorsTrust #childabuse #recovery




    All too often, male survivors begin their recovery, in the knowledge that it is possible, however painful it may be to recover, then they suddenly back off and stop working on the issues that made them call us in the first place!
    So what's the answer to this, and how you can ensure that you wont this and wont be the one who doesn't fail at the first hurdle either.


    DON'T MINIMISE THE ABUSE
    All to often, I hear guys say "mine was nothing like yours" when we speak about the abuse suffered, and more often than not, when they attend group, they say,after hearing someones else story, that they shouldn't really be complaining.
    That kind of response can cause you to think that the abuse you suffered wasn't that bad, it only happened a few times, but I can also guarantee that no matter what was done to you, or how long the abuse lasted, it has had the same devastating effects and affects upon you
    Therefore, you deserve to be part of a group and should be complaining about the abuse you suffered, as its caused enough damage to you and those around you.
    So no matter how long it lasted, or what you suffered, please don't feel like a fraud or that you don't deserve support, because you do.

    DISABLERS:
    Some people, even loved ones, don't want you to change without them, so try to stop you doing so. They won't help you, dragging you back to the past and feeling like you have for ages, which just reminds you of the past, perhaps by telling you how bad or sad you are, and will slowly drag you back down to their level


    CLOSED OPTIONS:
    This is something you wil do to yourself, perhaps in thinking its better that you go about it alone, or maybe you get tangled up with with everything, without making decisions, thinking that you have always been this way, can't change and won't change.....in other words - 'conditional recovery'
    You know that you should listen and perhaps wait, but ignore that and fall back into old habits, thoughts, feelings

    BUILDING UP A BANK BALANCE:
    Again, this is about storing old resentments, or behaviours up - saving them up, manufacturing resentments, hurt, blame, etc.
    You store them up, and when it becomes too much for you, so you can explode or implode, revert back to previous actions and lifestyles, and before you know it, you're back at the beginning, lacking commitment to start again, and consider yourself to be a failure, again!


    FEAR OF:

  • The unknown - Who or what am I.
  • Of honesty - Will I be accepted, or rejected?
  • Of responsibility - Can I survive, will I adapt/cope?


    PERMISSION:Can I do it?
    Do I give I myself permission to feel to be vulnerable?
    Who will I ask to help me?


    THREE MAIN AREAS TO WORK ON:1. Make quality decisions in your life, not the same mistakes, that you know will make you feel 'bad'.
    2. Identifying the cues and triggers that set you off, and make feel that way.
    3. Start to use the coping skills that work for you.
    You need to remain alert to the dangers that are ever present;
  • Recognise dangers signs.
  • Avoid placing yourself in high-risk situations.
  • Seek help when you need it.
  • Own the decision whether to react or not!
  • There is, and never will be a magic cure!


  • Use your common sense- take control of your life.
    Remember - Facing up to and coping with risks will build up your confidence.


    People needed around youThose who will play 'family' roles, in supporting you
    Friends who will support you, and hold you steady as you work towards your goals
    Supporters who will ensure you stay straight, in thinking and using modes


    How to do this?
    Sit down and write a list of people that can and will help you through this..safe people! Then ask those people you list to actually take on the roles required. Make sure you use them when needed and call them when you need and don't need to, safety first, second and third!

  • Copyright Male Survivors Trust

    Thursday, 3 December 2015

    Worries and Nightmares #childabuse

    I have too active a brain at times..

    I worry far too much about anything and everything. I worry what people think of me and I have always tried to put the needs of others before my own. I worry that people have dark intentions or that their apparently nice behaviour is a guise for something more sinister. I have been hurt too many times, even by those I thought were safe. I really need to relax and let my inherent trust through. Don't I? I have a few recurring nightmares and dreams. Many of the nightmares feature abandonment or betrayal. I worry that these are premonitions.

    It takes me a long time to feel comfortable with "new" people, to totally relax and allow myself to be, just me. If I feel I have been wronged in any way it takes me even longer. It took me a long time to make myself believe that I was an okay person and I still struggle with that concept. I imagine I am fairly heavy duty to be around..

    I need to try and take my own advice and not allow the past to control who I am today, at least most of the time anyway.

    I had a nightmare last night. It was about the fact that when I first disclosed the abuse I was disbelieved and called a liar. It got me to thinking what would have happened had I been believed 32 years ago. Would my life have been much different? There were no resources for male victims of abuse that I know of. The stigma surrounding victims was (I believe) far greater back then. Would I have been even more hated for destroying a number of families, for daring to speak out? Would I even have survived that? I have little to nil chance of ever getting justice (as do so many in similar circumstances). I could go after the Methodist Church for some of the atrocities done to me, but ultimately the blame is not with them. I am not after financial gain anyway. I want someone to say "sorry"...

    Male and female victims of familial abuse frequently have no recourse if they have waited a lifetime to disclose. It took me three attempts at disclosure before I was "properly" believed and anything positive happened. I waited too long, so much of my life wasted and lost in a fog. There is no point in dwelling on that fact but I would strongly urge anyone who is in a similar position to take the leap and start getting their lives back.

    This blog may not make a lot of sense, but I just had to get these words out.

    Yes.. I worry far too much.

    Tuesday, 1 December 2015

    Historical child abuse: Key investigations #childabuse


    Historical child abuse: Key investigations


    The repeated use of the word "historical" is clear Anti Victim Prejudice.  I only allow it here as it was in the original article (again by the BBC..)

    A quote from The Phoenix Post explains more 

    "Historical Sex Crimes – They never say historical murder or historical stabbing, they call them ‘unsolved crimes’. What is so bad about this offensive AVP trick/lie? They say ‘historic’ to give off a false sense of safety, even distance, whilst nothing could be further from the truth.
    The fact is that if the paedophile has never been challenged or stopped, then the paedophile never stopped and are more likely now to have many more current child victims. Furthermore, there’s nothing ‘historic’ about the ongoing lifelong damage and harm paedophiles leave in their destructive wake. Dr Sara Payne MBE"

    • From the sectio
    There are a number of ongoing investigations and inquiries - criminal and otherwise - into historical abuse allegations at institutions across the UK. Here is a guide to the key inquiries and their scope.

    Operation Hydrant

    In the summer of 2014 a co-ordination hub was set up by the National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) to oversee the investigation of allegations of "non-recent" child sex abuse within institutions or by people of public prominence.
    The team of officers working on this operation have been picked from forces across the UK, but the hub is based in South Yorkshire. The operation's staff are identifying links between investigations, and preventing duplication between forces
    On 1 December 2015 the NPCC announced that the operation had received reports of 2,228 suspects being investigated by police forces in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland - 1,217 of the suspects were "related to institutions", while 302 were classified as people of public prominence.
    The operation is being led by Norfolk Police Chief Constable Simon Bailey.


    Child abuse investigations graphic


    Met Police

    Umbrella inquiry: Operation Fairbank
    Fairbank is the Met Police's umbrella inquiry into historical child sex abuse claims involving politicians and other public figures. It began in 2012 as a "scoping exercise" to establish evidence for formal investigation and went on to establish a number of criminal investigations: Operations Fernbridge, Midland, Cayacos and then later Athabasca.
    • Grafton Close Children's Home: Operation Fernbridge (now closed)

    Anthony McSweeneyImage copyrightPA
    Image captionFather Anthony McSweeney was found guilty of sexually abusing a teenage boy between 1979 and 1981

    Launched in February 2013 and led by the Met Police, Operation Fernbridge investigated allegations of abuse in the early 1980s at Grafton Close Children's Home in west London, and at Elm Guest House in Barnes, south-west London. In connection with Grafton Close, two people were charged with offences. One was found dead and one, Catholic priest Father Anthony McSweeney, was found guilty of sexually abusing a teenage boy. He was sentenced to three years' jail in March. The operation has been closed and investigations into Elm Guest House taken up by Operation Athabasca (see below).
    • Elm Guest House: Operation Athabasca
    This new investigation takes over from Fernbridge in investigating allegations about a paedophile network centred on Elm Guest House in Barnes, south-west Londonin the 1970s and early 1980s. Police are still appealing for information on 020 7161 0500.
    • Dolphin Square: Operation Midland
    Established in November 2014, Operation Midland is examining claims that boys were abused by a group of powerful men from politics, the military and law enforcement agencies at locations across southern England and in London in the 1970s and 1980s. It is also examining claims that three boys were murdered.Operation Midland has focused on the Dolphin Square estate in Pimlico, south-west London.

    Peter RightonImage copyrightPA
    Image captionConvicted paedophile Peter Righton

    • Paedophile Information Exchange: Operation Cayacos
    Operation Cayacos investigated allegations of a paedophile ring linked to convicted paedophile Peter Righton - a founding member of the Paedophile Information Exchange, which campaigned to make sex between adults and children legal. Righton died in 2007. Two men, Charles Napier and Richard Alston, were subsequently convicted and jailed for 13 years and 21 months respectively.

    Greater Manchester Police

    • Cyril Smith

    Cyril SmithImage copyrightPA
    Image captionCyril Smith died in 2010 aged 82

    Greater Manchester Police is investigating allegations that Cyril Smith, the larger-than-life Rochdale MP who died in 2010, abused vulnerable young boys in the town. His family says he always denied the accusations.
    The allegations first surfaced in 1979 when Private Eye magazine carried reports that he abused teenagers at Cambridge House, a privately run "hostel for working boys" in Rochdale.
    It has also been alleged that he raped boys at Rochdale's Knowl View residential school and that he frequented Elm Guest House in south-west London - a location linked to the Met Police's Operation Fernbridge.

    Wiltshire Police


    Edward HeathImage copyrightReuters

    • Edward Heath
    The national investigation into claims of historical child sexual abuse involving former Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath is being led by Wiltshire Police.
    More than a dozen forces are carrying out investigations linked to Sir Edward - Wiltshire Police will act as overseer to ensure a "consistent approach".
    Sir Edward lived in Salisbury, Wiltshire, for many years and died at his home there in 2005 aged 89.
    On 3 August 2015 the police watchdog, the Independent Police Complaints Commission, said it would look at whether officers at Wiltshire Police failed to pursue allegations made against the former prime minister.
    A retired detective has alleged that claims were made in the 1990s but not followed up.

    States of Jersey Police

    • Operation Whistle
    In a statement released earlier this year the States of Jersey Police provided details of its "locally- generated operation" - Operation Whistle - which it said had been running "under the auspice of Operation Hydrant".
    The force said Operation Whistle was set up after the Jimmy Savile scandal, and following an increase in the reporting of historical cases of abuse in Jersey.
    The force said it was investigating a number of allegations involving:
    • 45 suspects - some of whom are deceased or as yet unidentified
    • Four institutions
    • 13 people of public prominence - one of whom is Edward Heath

    Other inquiries and investigations

    A number of other inquiries and investigations are under way or have been completed. Here are the details:
    Inquiries into the handling of abuse allegations
    Independent inquiryAnnounced in July 2014, the independent inquiry will investigate the way public bodies handled child sex abuse claims. Former judge Elizabeth Butler-Sloss was chosen to head the inquiry, but she stepped down following concerns about her family links. She was replaced by Fiona Woolf, the Lord Mayor of London. But in October 2014 she also stood down after concerns were raised over her social links to the former Home Secretary Leon Brittan. In February 2015, New Zealand judge Lowell Goddard was announced as the new head of the inquiry.
    Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC)The police watchdog is investigating alleged corruption in the Met Police, including claims it covered up child sex offences because MPs and police officers were involved. The IPCC is investigating 14 referrals spanning four decades. The Met said it had voluntarily referred the allegations, which arose from Operation Fairbank.
    Home Office (Wanless) reviewHeaded by NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless, the review examined Home Office handling of historical child sex abuse allegations and the way police and prosecutors dealt with information given to them. This followed a call from Labour MP Simon Danczuk to explain why written allegations about powerful paedophiles - presented in the 1980s to Lord Brittan when he was home secretary - have since disappeared. A 2013 Home Office review of allegations concerning child abuse from 1979-99 resulted in four files, not previously disclosed, being passed to police. The Wanless review found no evidence that records were deliberately removed or destroyed.
    Historical Institutional Abuse(Northern Ireland)Set up to establish if there were systemic failings by institutions or the state in their duties towards children in their care between 1922-95. Due to report January 2017. Chaired by Sir Anthony Hart. A High Court judge in Belfast has granted a judicial review into how the Kincora Boys' Home will be investigated. Three senior care staff at Kincora were jailed in 1981 for abusing 11 boys. Allegations remain that some members of the British intelligence services knew of the abuse and helped to cover it up.
    Scotland care inquirystatutory public inquiry into the historical abuse of children in care has been set up by the Scottish government following scandals involving child abuse at institutions including those run by the Roman Catholic church.
    Other inquiries
    Operation Pallial, North WalesThe National Crime Agency is investigating allegations of historical abuse at children's homes in North Wales. It has found evidence of 140 alleged cases of historical abuse between 1963 and 1992. Also, Mrs Justice Macur has been appointed to review the 2000 Waterhouse inquiry into North Wales abuse dating back to the 1970s.
    Operation Garford, SuffolkInvestigating historical abuse allegations centred on Kesgrave Hall School from the 1970s to the 1990s. Results of the original investigation, carried out in 1992, are being reviewed. Suffolk police are carrying out two further, unconnected investigations into allegations of abuse at two other schools.
    Independent Jersey Care InquiryThe Independent Jersey Care Inquiry is investigating historical abuse claims in Jersey's care system from 1960 to present day. It began in July 2014. Frances Oldham QC is the inquiry chairwoman.
    Jimmy Savile inquiries
    Operation YewtreePolice investigation into Savile and others. An investigation by the Met Police and NSPCC reported in January 2013 on allegations against Savile. Cases which emerged as a result of investigations into Savile, but were unconnected to him, included Max Clifford, Rolf Harris and Dave Lee Travis. Investigations into other suspects are continuing.
    Savile NHS inquiryReports found Jimmy Savile sexually assaulted victims aged five to 75 between 1962 and 2009 in 28 hospitals, including Broadmoor and Leeds General Infirmary. Reports relating to 13 other NHS organisations, including Stoke Mandeville Hospital, were published in February 2015. The Stoke Mandeville report found Savile abused 63 people connected to the hospital between 1968 and 1992.
    Savile BBC inquiryDame Janet Smith is investigating whether culture and practice at the BBC enabled Savile to carry out abuse of children unchecked. It has now finished taking evidence. Her report was expected in May 2015, but its publication has been delayed.
    Dept for EducationHeaded by human rights lawyer Lucy Scott-Moncrieff - to look at allegations that Savile abused children in schools and children's homes, from the 1960s to 1980s.




    Source BBC...

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