Tuesday 31 January 2012

Witness To My Shame

Memories... Light the corners of your mind
Misty watercolour memories
Of the way things were.....

It's been several months since any "new" memories surfaced. There are those "out in the real world" that doubt the victim when new memories come to the surface. I will be totally honest, when I get these memories I doubt myself. Unfortunately with the memories come other "proofs", confirmation that those horrors bubbling on the surface are very much real.

I've spent most of my adult life knowing that I had been abused sexually. It was only when other problems brought immense emotional and mental stresses that the depths of that abuse became clear. Last autumn I thought every door had been unlocked, every drawer opened, every stone turned over.

I was wrong.

I have always felt insecure. Self doubt and self loathing has been an unwelcome lifetime companion. The insecurities result from the way I was treated growing up, the conditional "love", doing what I was told to do in order not to be punished. Listening to the lies of adults, accepting blame for things when I was innocent. The list goes on and on...

I cannot put the latest memories down as FACT yet, so wrote this....

I wish I could curl up and die
Crying over the pain a waste of tears
I open my mouth and scream silently
The filthy hands invaded and defiled again

Forced to sleep at his side so sickening
I lay there naked, shivering and bleeding
My life a lie, my purpose to serve
it all appears surreal, in the blackness

My body aches, stinging and bruised
I open my eyes, I look around, hoping
searching for a way to escape
Knowing I cannot, must not.

Through the darkness I see my teddy bear
My sleep aid, cast aside, tarnished
A silent witness to my lasting shame
My innocence raped, my mind fractures.

He wakes from drunken sleep,
His hand searches for me, I tense
His finger invades, I clench
He snores again, finger left in place.

I pray for someone to take me away
I imagine flying, soaring through the sky
Anything to blank out my reality
He moves, his bitten nails cut into me.


This is the best time of the day—the dawn
The final cleansing breath unsullied yet
By acrid fume or death’s cacophony
The rank refuse of unchained ambition
And pray, deny me not but know me now,
Your faithful retainer stands resolute
To serve his liege lord without recompense
Perchance to fall and perish namelessly
No flag-draped bier or muffled drum to set
The cadence for a final dress parade
But it was not always thus—remember?
Once you worshipped me and named me a god
In many tongues and made offering lest
I exact too terrible a tribute

Take heed for I am weary, ancient
And decrepit now and my time grows short
There are no honorable frays to join
Only mean death dealt out in dibs and dabs
Or horror unleashed from across oceans
Assail me not with noble policy
For I care not at all for platitude
And surrender such tedious detail
To greater minds than mine and nimbler tongues
Singular in their purpose and resolve
And presuming to speak for everyman

Oh, for another time, a distant field
And there a mortal warrior’s lonely grave
But duty charges me remain until
The end the last battle of the last war
Until that ‘morrow render unto me
That which is mine my stipend well deserved
The fairest flower of your progeny
Your sons, your daughters your hopes and your dreams
The cruel consequence of your conceit..

Steve Earle

Last Chance For Love

I'm waltzing with you hand-in-hand
Into the night....
A million stars could not compare
To the way your eyes sparkle in the light

The crowd goes home
They turn out the lights
Now it's just you and me in the moonlight
You look so wonderful tonight

With you in your finest clothes
Give me your hand
Let me spin you around

Step on my toe and let me hear you laugh
As I wrap your arms around my neck
The smile on your face
The way you feel in satin and lace

All so soft, so smooth
Graceful as the way we move
We'll sing the song that's in our hearts
The one about two lovers in love

That could never be torn apart
Minutes become hours and we kiss and hold each other near
The moon tells us it's time to go
As the stars begin to disappear

I take your hand and squeeze a little tighter
Bowing before you like a gentleman
I ask for one more dance before we sleep
For this is our last dance goodnight.

Monday 30 January 2012

Losing Control

My head is spinning,
My heart is hurting,
My eyes are dead in a stare,
My body is cold,
My heart is turning to stone,
My feet give out underneath me,
My hands shake,
My mouth is dry,
My teeth grind,
And my fists clench,
I grow angry,
And I feel like I am losing control,
This feeling will soon pass,
But for a short time it will last,
Why I feel this I will never know,
I wish I was happy with life,
But I am not,
I only feel one thing,
Like I am losing control.....

Saturday 28 January 2012

Don't Listen...

Don't listen to me when I say there's nothing wrong
As I turn my face and hum some random song
Don't listen when I say I can't come out to play
That I'm much to busy or it's too cold today..

Don't listen when he states, "oh he fell down some stairs"
When he holds me tight and pretends that he cares
Don't listen as I scream and shout out in pain,
You've nothing to lose, you've nothing to gain.

Don't listen to the sirens, for they can't be for me
I'm never that lucky, I can't be set free
Don't listen as I rock, back and fore in my chair
Ignore my cuts and bruises, try not to stare.

Don't listen to my silence, ignore my pleading eyes
I'm just a nothing to you, turn your gaze to the skies
Don't listen as my heart and soul break, silently in two
Don't listen, don't worry, for it could not happen to you..

You're My first, My last, My Valentine

You're the first to see beyond these wary eyes,
To see the truth through walls of lies,
A heart afraid, yet longing so much,
For a gentle word and a tender touch.

I was a shadow of a man, but you could see,
Beyond the darkness, there was a light in me,
You felt my pain, sensed my fear so real,
You touched my soul, helped me to heal.

My days were empty and my nights were so long,
I stumbled through life until you came along,
You reached out for me, I felt your touch
We were unsure, but we both needed so much

I never believed I would see the day
Love would find me, that it would stay
I'm yours forever, till the stars don't shine,
You're My first, My last, My Valentine

Friday 27 January 2012

What Constitutes Child Sexual Abuse?

This week I have invited back Dr Nicola Davies who wrote an excellent article for me last year. You may remember it?

In the Shadows: Male Sexual Abuse Survivors

I was chatting with Nicola last week and mentioned that there was apparent confusion over what constituted child sexual abuse. Nicola loves to write and today I publish the result. Many thanks again Nicola for the work you do.

What Constitutes Child Sexual Abuse?

There are many misconceptions as to what constitutes child sexual abuse (CSA). Is it abusive to inappropriately watch a child undress? How about to physically examine a child for no clear reason? Or, to show them pornography? Does touch have to be involved in order for it to constitute sexual abuse? Some people will read these questions and find it difficult to see how anyone could not see all of them as sexually abusive. However, the lack of understanding over what constitutes CSA is far too prevalent and not everyone is clear on this topic.

To allay any doubts:

 All sexual activity between an adult and a child is sexual abuse.

 Sexual touching between children can also be sexual abuse, when there is a significant age difference (usually 3 or more years) between the children, or if the children are very different developmentally or size-wise.

 Sexual abuse does not have to involve penetration, force, pain, or even touching.

 If an adult engages in any sexual behaviour (looking, showing, or touching) with a child to meet their own interest or sexual needs, it is sexual abuse.


Physical contact that constitutes CSA includes:

• Making a child touch someone else's genitals

• Touching a child's genitals for sexual purposes

• Making a child play sexual games

• Penetrating via putting an object body parts inside the child for sexual purposes, including the vagina, mouth and anus.

• Physically examining a child for sexual gratification.

• Engaging a child in prostitution.

Non-contact behaviours that constitute CSA include:

• Sexualised genital exposure from an adult to a child

• Making a child perform sexual poses

• Photographing a child naked or in sexual poses

• Showing a child pornography

• Making a child watch sexual acts

• Making a child listen to sexual acts

• Inappropriately watching a child undress or use the bathroom

• Downloading indecent, sexual images of children on the Internet

• Witnessing others being sexually abused

What to do if you suspect CSA:

If you think you were a victim of CSA, you were. It can be all too easy to dismiss an event we were uncomfortable with because it didn’t involve touch or it was carried out by someone we knew. If you feel that you were subjected to CSA, trust your own judgment – you wouldn’t be suspecting it without good reason.

If you are someone who has any suspicions at all that a child you know is being sexually abused, do not wait for ‘proof’ – report it immediately to the local police or social services. Alternatively, call the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000. If you have concerns about someone you think might have a sexual interest in children, contact Stop IT Now on 0808 1000 900.

Dr Nicola J Davies,
BSc (Hons); MSc Comm.; PhD; MBPsS
Health Psychology Consultant and Freelance Writer

Nicola's Blog

Thursday 26 January 2012

Love UnBound

A denial is often
and easily given
by a heart wary of strain -
an emotional prison.

Remembrance of pain,
real and immense
Creates its own barriers,
erects a high fence.

Knowledge of things
so recently felt
and self promises made
'never again will I melt'.

Fear you have named it,
'self preservation I claim'
yet tug at my heart strings
you do all the same.

Yes I am alive and
breathing and beating
and my fear has a way of
keeping me running.

To deny what I hear
you may truly be saying
in safety I seek my
protection in praying.

Right back behind barriers
purposely built
to save my own sanity,
my heart wants no guilt

Or will it, I wonder,
is it possibly true?
can you love me just simply-
and can I love you?

Can we love with the distance,
the hours the miles
can we care in our deepest,
where hearts do abide?

Can we accept what the forces,
the fates have decreed
and recognise daily
this developing need?

Will we hurt will we cry
will we ache with desire
knowing only one way
can we quench this small fire?

Ah, but the distance,
the oceans and endless sky miles
cannot stop this love growing
so gently beside us.

So my love I may stumble
and wander about
not answer your questions
and leave you with doubt.

But my heart has discovered
a secret anew
my day's incomplete
unless I spend time with you .

I'll Fly Away

Never felt this way before..
Feels like an open, festering sore
Don`t want to eat or even drink
Not even going to stop and think

About those things so bad, so mad..
Regretting the loves I never had.
The love that makes me want to die
To be an angel, to learn to fly

To fly away from this world I hate
And step inside those Pearly Gates.
A place that is beyond shame and pain
To sit in the sun, not cry in the rain

When I get there I hope that they will see
Who stole my life, what was done to me.
I'll curse their putrid, perverted lives
Make lightening strike them from the skies.

I'll Fly away, leave earthly bonds and flee
There's no-one left there to worry about me.
So do not weep, be happy, I'm free at last
The pain is gone, it's all in the past.

Wednesday 25 January 2012

Take Me Down To The Ocean

Take me down to the ocean,
Walk with me on it's sandy shore
I will look out on the horizon
Remembering all that had gone before.

Take me back to my childhood
Help me change the paths of time
Erase the pain, replace it with laughter
Looking out across the great unknown.

Put away the masks, remove the illusion
Of a man, strong and in control
Help me step out of this darkness
Hold my hand, let me not be alone.

Take me down to the ocean
Let me lay on it's sandy shore
Stay with me, be my hearts desire
Love me as you've never loved before.

Happy St Dwynwen's Day

A traditional Welsh love song covered by Duffy for the soundtrack of the Welsh / Spanish language movie Patagonia, premiered in March 2011.

Ar Lan Y Mor

Ar lan y môr mae rhosys cochion
Ar lan y môr mae lilis gwynion
Ar lan y môr mae 'nghariad inne
Yn cysgu'r nos a chodi'r bore.

By the sea shore there are red roses
By the sea shore there are white lilies
By the sea shore my love and I
Sleep the night and rise at daybreak

Ar lan y môr mae carreg wastad
Lle bum yn siarad gair âm cariad
O ddeutu hon fe dyf y lili
Ac ambell sprig o rosmari.

By the sea shore there's a flat stone
where we spoke about love
around it grow the lilies
and a few sprigs of rosemary

Ar lan y mor mae tawod melyn
Ar lan y mor mae ton ac ewin
Ar lan y mor mae hen atgofion
sydd o hyd yn torri nghalon

By the sea shore there is yellow sand
By the sea shore there are waves and foam
By the sea shore there are old memories
that still break my heart

Ar lan y mor mae cri'r wylan
Ar lan y mor mae mam a'i baban
Ar lan y mor ymhell o Gymru
Mae na un y rwyf ei garu

By the sea shore the cry of the seagull
By the sea shore there's a mother and her baby
By the sea shore far from Wales
there's someone who I love

Tuesday 24 January 2012

Dream Lover

I am burning
the fire of my yearning
flashpoints of a thousand
sparkling maybes without oxygen,
your eyes fanning the flames

I am flying
my heart is melting
molten in its beating
I’ve flown too close
your sun burns my clipped wings

I am swimming
the depth of my feeling
wets your lips
through the warm waters
your riding the crest of my wave

I am grounded
my wanting earthern,
base in its desire
the fire diminishing
your skin yields to my touch

Love Lost

What is this that lingers
in the pit of my heart
like an unblossomed flower
it reaches to the sky for its
to be revealed.
Uncovering each naked petal
like a vibrant being- so full
so bold in its claim upon this planet
yet fragile to the stem
and brittle in the wind.

What is this which suffers
quietly in isolation
true in its voice but almost never heard
like a distant echo
to your own understanding
of why you are living as the person
you are. And if you could,
who you would be.
this undoing of your barren determination-
doesn't it make your stomach turn
to realize you have only
lived for others and not

What is this it believes
in the broken heart you thought
would never mend.
buried a mile deep in emotions
that could have left you forever
but didn't.
giving credence to your thick wall
of disposition. it resides intimately,
in the clutches of your small hands
almost barely out of reach. but
do you see it
when it counts. or do you neglect
the truth of your existence.

Will you blossom
will you suffer
will you believe

LOVE LOVE LOVE... Did you know that Wales has its very own Valentine’s Day?

St Dwynwen's Day is celebrated in Wales on 25 January. But who was St Dwynwen?

St Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of lovers, which makes her the Welsh equivalent of St Valentine.

As the legend goes, Dwynwen fell in love with Maelon Dafodrill, and they wanted to marry, but her father refused consent due to arranging for Dwynwen to wed another suitor. In his anger about the rejection, Maelon raped and left Dwynwen.

Dwynwen's sadness impels her to console herself in the woods nearby. There she prays to God to rid her of her feelings for Maelon. Answering her prayers, an angel comes to Dwynwen in a dream, and gives her a potion to help her forget Maelon, and turn him into ice.

God then grants Dwynwen three requests. The first was to have Maelon thawed, the second was that God would look kindly on the hopes and dreams of true lovers, and her final request was that she was never to marry. Her wishes became true, and as thanks she devoted the remainder of her life to God.

Dwynwen then became a nun and she settled on Llanddwyn Island, which rests off the west coast of Anglesey. She died of natural causes around 460AD. The remains of the16th century Tudor church in Llanddwyn can be seen today although the site is attributed to that of the church founded by Dwynwen. The church and the nearby well has attracted pilgrimages by people over the centuries, particularly from young lovers seeking assurances of their future lives together.

The water of the well was said to be the home for a magical and sacred fish (or eel) whose behaviour and movement predicted the future for young lovers. Questions were asked of the fish and the answers were determined by the direction in which it moved. Women would test the faithfulness of their husbands by sprinkling breadcrumbs into the water and then placing a handkerchief on the surface. The husband would be deemed faithful if the fish disturbed the surface.

Traditionally, St. Dwynwen’s Day is celebrated by giving and receiving lovespoons. The Welsh lovespoon dates back to the 17th century when young men would carve them from a single piece of wood, decorate the handle with romantic symbols and then give them to the lady who had caught their eye. The earliest surviving example, dating from around 1667, is on display at the Welsh Folk Museum in St. Fagans, Cardiff. That shows they last a lot longer than the traditional rose for Valentine's day!

Monday 23 January 2012


My world is dark, as black as sin
What is this mess, I've gotten in
It hurts so bad, I don't want to play
How can I turn this night into day?
Go Away, just let me be
I want to die, why can't you see
I want to go I don't want to stay
I will not turn this night into day
What are these things coming from my eyes
Tears of hurt, and shame, and lies
This is my life, I can't change it OK?
I cannot change this night into day.
It hurts so bad, this pain is too much
I don't want you near me please don't touch
How can you even look my way?
How can I change this night into day?
I heal slowly take steps tiny and small
Out on thin ice, please don't let me fall
Hey, what do I see..a little grey?
The night is starting to change to day
The shame, the hurt, the abuse is not mine
I know I'll heal over time
Though it hurts now, more than I can say.
I have a glimpse of night into day.

Sunday 22 January 2012

Forever Gone

I could never have truly known, before,
never have truly understood,
what it meant when two souls become one.

I had dreamed, of course,
of the rapture, the glorious glow,
of love, and more.
Oh, but what a pale comparison!

I was like an imprisoned eagle, held in captivity,
yearning for the skies, and finally set free,
my bonds thrown off, my wings spread wide,
searching for thermal drafts,
to carry me to unparalleled heights.

Hours spent watching you,
as you in turn watched me,
basking in the blasts of azure,
escaping through your slotted lashes.

Tracing the faint impression of a smile,
just before it is engulfed within a wide grin,
delighting in the feathery touches,
that made me shudder so.

Huddling close, limbs entwined,
our fears and dreams shared,
like treasures between us,
I knew then.

Before you taught me of love, the glory, and more,
before, I could never have truly understood,
never known the fiery liquid pain,
that I felt as you left me,
forever gone.

There's blood on the razor's edge

There's blood on the razor's edge
There's nothing in my heart
There's blood dripping down my leg
And the stinging pain,
Nearly ripping me apart..
There's blood on my fingers
Blood on my mind tonight
There's my blood on the paper
I sicken by the sight
There's blood on the floor
You never know what's going on
Behind closed doors
There's blood on the razor's edge
There's blood on my fingers
I can feel the warmth
I feel sick… I want to throw up…
I feel sick.. I'm going to throw up...
I'm sick…
There's blood on the floor
Can you tell what's going on
behind closed doors?
I should never
have swallowed the glass pieces.
Can you tell what's going on
behind closed doors?
There's blood on the razor's edge
There's nothing in my heart...

Saturday 21 January 2012

Male Survivors - Myths and their consequences

There are various stereotypes and myths that surround the adult male survivors' ability to face the sexual abuse or rape. These include:-

•Males don't feel emotions as readily as women so are less likely to be hurt by the abuse.
•Males are supposed to be big and strong therefore able to deal with and fight off abuse.
•Males cannot be raped by women.
•Males enjoy all sex, so they must have enjoyed the abuse or rape.
•Males should not cry or express their pain.
•Male victims are more likely to become abusers or rapists.

These common misconceptions and myths frequently lead to the following:-

•Loss of self-asteem and self worth.
•Doubts over their masculinity
•Self-blame and guilt
•Feelings of shame, disgust, anger, loss,
•Feelings of powerlessness, apprehension, withdrawal, and embarrassment
•Fears that they won't be able to protect and support their families
•Sexual difficulties and insecurities
•Self harming (drinking, drug use, aggression, attempted suicide)
•Intimacy issues
•Questioning of sexual identity
•Fear of losing friends or family
•Fear that they will be judged, not helped.

Myth #1 - Boys and men can't be victims.

This myth, instilled through masculine gender socialization and sometimes referred to as the "macho image," declares that males, even young boys, are not supposed to be victims or even vulnerable. We learn very early that males should be able to protect themselves. In truth, boys are children - weaker and more vulnerable than their perpetrators - who cannot really fight back. Why? The perpetrator has greater size, strength, and knowledge. This power is exercised from a position of authority, using resources such as money or other bribes, or outright threats - whatever advantage can be taken to use a child for sexual purposes.

Myth #2 - Most sexual abuse of boys is perpetrated by homosexual males.

Pedophiles who molest boys are not expressing a homosexual orientation any more than pedophiles who molest girls are practicing heterosexual behaviors. While many child molesters have gender and/or age preferences, of those who seek out boys, the vast majority are not homosexual. They are pedophiles.

Myth #3 - If a boy experiences sexual arousal or orgasm from abuse, this means he was a willing participant or enjoyed it

In reality, males can respond physically to stimulation (get an erection) even in traumatic or painful sexual situations. Therapists who work with sexual offenders know that one way a perpetrator can maintain secrecy is to label the child's sexual response as an indication of his willingness to participate. "You liked it, you wanted it," they'll say. Many survivors feel guilt and shame because they experienced physical arousal while being abused. Physical (and visual or auditory) stimulation is likely to happen in a sexual situation. It does not mean that the child wanted the experience or understood what it meant at the time.

Myth #4 - Boys are less traumatized by the abuse experience than girls.

While some studies have found males to be less negatively affected, more studies show that long term effects are quite damaging for either sex. Males may be more damaged by society's refusal or reluctance to accept their victimization, and by their resultant belief that they must "tough it out" in silence.

Myth #5 - Boys abused by males are or will become homosexual.

While there are different theories about how the sexual orientation develops, experts in the human sexuality field do not believe that premature sexual experiences play a significant role in late adolescent or adult sexual orientation. It is unlikely that someone can make another person a homosexual or heterosexual. Sexual orientation is a complex issue and there is no single answer or theory that explains why someone identifies himself as homosexual, heterosexual or bi-sexual. Whether perpetrated by older males or females, boys' or girls' premature sexual experiences are damaging in many ways, including confusion about one's sexual identity and orientation.Many boys who have been abused by males erroneously believe that something about them sexually attracts males, and that this may mean they are homosexual or effeminate. Again, not true. Pedophiles who are attracted to boys will admit that the lack of body hair and adult sexual features turns them on. The pedophile's inability to develop and maintain a healthy adult sexual relationship is the problem - not the physical features of a sexually immature boy.

Myth #6 - The "Vampire Syndrome" that is, boys who are sexually abused, like the victims of Count Dracula, go on to "bite" or sexually abuse others.

This myth is especially dangerous because it can create a terrible stigma for the child, that he is destined to become an offender. Boys might be treated as potential perpetrators rather than victims who need help. While it is true that most perpetrators have histories of sexual abuse, it is NOT true that most victims go on to become perpetrators. Research by Jane Gilgun, Judith Becker and John Hunter found a primary difference between perpetrators who were sexually abused and sexually abused males who never perpetrated: non-perpetrators told about the abuse, and were believed and supported by significant people in their lives. Again, the majority of victims do not go on to become adolescent or adult perpetrators; and those who do perpetrate in adolescence usually don't perpetrate as adults if they get help when they are young.

Myth #7 - If the perpetrator is female, the boy or adolescent should consider himself fortunate to have been initiated into heterosexual activity.

In reality, premature or coerced sex, whether by a mother, aunt, older sister, baby-sitter or other female in a position of power over a boy, causes confusion at best, and rage,depression or other problems in more negative circumstances. To be used as a sexual object by a more powerful person, male or female, is always abusive and often damaging supposed to be the strong ones, it often means that they do not accept, cover up or "forget" what happened to them. If they do recall they are more likely NOT to seek help and therapy. Men are supposed to be able to cope with anything.









Maybe In Time

                     Does time hold the answers?
                     Each day passed seems so wasted
                     Every precious moment gone, unused
                     Time is not eternal
                     It is in question, unpredictable
                     Hoping to close my eyes and wake up at the end
                     of this seemingly endless misery
                     Don't want to know what I know
                     No longer want to think
                     My crumbled heart aches
                     Confusion overwhelmes me
                     Did I ever really know?
                     Was I fooled for so long?
                     No line between real and pretend
                     What healing power lies in time?
                     Is it like medicine or stitches to make things better?
                     Or does it simply make us forget?
                     I refuse to forget
                     Will not let time "heal"
                     The only elixir for this illness is honesty
                     Only the truth holds the power to heal
                     Why must my eyes remain backwards,
                     Peering into the past?
                     So many feelings all at once
                     No more death
                     Please no more ends
                     Searching so hard for the truth
                     Only creating more illusions
                     So many questions
                     No answers
                     Maybe in time

Friday 20 January 2012

Etta James 1938 - 2012 R.I.P and thank you for the music!

A voice that could soothe the soul or igbite passion. A great loss. Sing with the angels Etta.

It Should Not HURT To Be A Child. #StopChildAbuse

Turning a blind eye?

Hoping someone else will intervene?

Not your place to say anything?




Childhood Sexual Abuse is an abuse of power. It involves sexual activity forced upon a child by either an adult or an older, more powerful child. Because the victims are powerless to stop the abuse and aren’t old enough to understand what is happening, they frequently suffer deep emotional damage even if there’s no physical damage. There doesn’t have to be intercourse or sexual "touching" for abuse to have occured. Children who are forced to watch sexual activity, listen to sexual language, or view pornographic material may be damaged by the experience. Abusers come from all races, economic classes, male, female, family member, religious figure, teacher, youth worker, medical worker, etc, etc and cannot otherwise be identified except by those they have abused.

Most abusers tell their victim that whatever happened should be kept secret. They may say that no one else will believe the story, that the child will be blamed for causing the sexual activity, or give threats (fabricated, such as threatening to harm the child's pet; or, semi-realistic: "You'll be taken away and put in a foster home if you tell.") Especially when the abuser is someone the child/teen trusted, that trust doesn't die immediately; love or loyalty brings a desire not to get their abuser in trouble. Sexual abuse may have gone on for years before a victim decides to disclose what is happening, or they may not tell until after it ends, if ever. Parents and others working with children and teens need to be open to hearing, or they will not be trusted with the child's feelings. It is also fairly common to avoid thinking about the abuse because it is too painful, especially when it goes on for a long time; people really do forget that they were abused, but it is forgetting on purpose, a defense mechanism. Even while abuse is taking place, some people are able to dissociate and go into a near-trance or pretend that they are somewhere else. This dissociation can remain with the victin for many years in one form or another. It is an escape. There are cases where the abuse was so traumatic that the victim will almost dissapear and dissociated "alters" will take their place.

Of course, some effects happen whether there was a trust bond to break or not. Physical harm can certainly result from sexual abuse, especially if it involved penetration of a small child (with genitals or objects), but the emotional harm is longer-lasting. The feelings of discomfort, confusion, shame etc associated with those abusive sexual acts don't just go away because one has grown older and found a non-abusive sexual partner; as I write this it's been thirty two years since "the grandfather" last molested me and I still flinch from touches that remind me of his. Having sexual acts forced onto you at a young age can teach many unhealthy lessons: that you are only good for sex and don't deserve to be treated well; that sex is the only way to get attention or affection, that people are not be trusted; that it's OK to use people as you were used; that sex is dirty and secret and shame over being involved in it; that you are powerless and cannot stop being used by others; that you are not safe unless you purposely make yourself unattractive; that the only thing that you have control over is the way your body looks; guilt from feeling as if you didn't do enough to stop the abuse or for any parts that were physically enjoyable; and other items. It's not surprising that people who go into therapy for what seem to be unrelated issues end up dealing with past sexual abuse; it can affect all of one's relationships with people. My most recent memories and problems only came to light after seeking therapy for depression caused by the affect of the global recession and ill health on my life. Nothing to do with abuse at all. Being in a safe environment allowed the abuse memoreis to surface.

More attention is usually given to abused females, but as these statistics show, males are also sexually abused. Whilst 80% to 90% of abusers are male, but there are female abusers of both boys and girls; those who are abused by women often are even more reluctant to disclose the abuse because it does not fit the stereotypes. However, this does not mean that abused boys do not show aftereffects, and until recently they have had substantially more difficulty finding resources to help themselves than those abused as girls have. Male victims of male abusers also have the added difficulty of society's homophobia to deal with; they worry that being abused by a member of the same sex has made them gay (even if they aren't now and have never been attracted to the same sex). This sometimes leads to their becoming homophobic as a way of trying to prove to themselves and others that they aren't gay. (In fact, most male abusers of males consider themselves to be heterosexual.)

Sexually abused children frequently show changes in behaviour, including: apparent personality changes (happy child is suddenly depressed); physical complaints such as stomachaches; nightmares; reluctance to go to certain places or have certain people around; regressive behavior (acting younger than they are); and playing sexually with dolls or playmates. Teens who are being abused often run away. Of course, physical signs such as injury to the genitalia are even more obvious, but the behavioral changes are definitely prompting for a parent or other authority figure to ask the child about the possibility of abuse. If abuse of any kind is reported to you, believe what you are hearing. It is extremely rare for children to lie about having been sexually abused (why would a child make up something so painful and difficult to deal with?) Reassure the child that it is not their fault, thank them for their trust in you, and explain that the abuse needs to be reported to authorities to stop the abuser from hurting others. Sometimes the story is retracted under pressure from the abuser (or family) or to avoid the difficulties of a formal investigation -- this does not generally mean that it was originally a lie, merely that the child/adolescent wants to keep things from getting worse than just the abuse by itself.

It is estimated that for every reported incident of abuse that 10 more go unreported....

The following is "borrowed" from the NSPCC website.

A significant minority of children suffer serious abuse or neglect, according to NSPCC research:

•Three-quarters (72%) of sexually abused children did not tell anyone about the abuse at the time. 27% told someone later. Around a third (31%) still had not told anyone about their experience(s) by early adulthood.

•In 2008/09, police in England and Wales recorded more than 21,000 sex offences against children.

•In 2009/10, ChildLine counsellors dealt with over 500,000 contacts from children calling about various problems including, bullying, sex abuse, violence and mental health issues.


Statistics only come from reporting, so we don’t have accurate, objective numbers. But based on the reports available, it’s believed that 1 in 3 girls have been sexually abused , and a general consensus of 1 in 5 to 1 in 7 boys ARE sexually abused.


32% of ALL reported sexual crimes (54,982 sexual crimes in total) in Eng and Wales in 10/11 were sexual crimes against children under 16.


Then and Now #Survivors Guest Post via @TRISHAandSEAN

I am very pleased to welcome Trisha to my blog this week. This is her story, in her own words.

I connected with her through Twitter and she is in my eyes a Twitter superstar.


I come from a very much dysfunctional, mixed-race, abusive and violent 'family' background/environment, eldest of five. Up untill the age of approximately 13/14yrs, I used to mix with the other siblings,then circumstances within 'home', changed for the worse, it went from sexual abuse to incest,when my 'male parent', moved back into the 'family' home, and I was forced to share my bed with him. I became the 'female parent' to the household. My 'female parent', had full nervous mental breakdown, so he refused to share bed/room with her.

I have never had the luxury of emotional/loveable/guidance and support from a parent, that most, but not all, children growing up are supposed to have. This resulted in me becoming very withdrawn, so when teenagehood kicked in, and most youngsters can rely on some parental guidance for learning about hormone's, etc, I reluctantly turned to my 'male parent', because the option of 'female parent', was not available, for this, the abusive one, I was forced to deal with. I had no-one else around for me,and at secondary school, I was bullied, throughout the 4 of 5 yrs I was there. Ironically, school was my sanctuary, no matter what I was going through at 'home', I had school, alongside music by way of radio at 'home', when the coast was 'clear', would listen to radio and dance/sing, it was small part of happiness.

I learnt from secondary school, my second one,(I was transfered from first one,due to 'scandal', coming out about me and certain situation at home, it was all-girls school, and they thought best to transfer to another one, again, with no emotional support from anyone, especially 'female parent', I was in wrong/blame for anything that happened,case closed), that the legal age to leave home, without being forced back/with 'parental/guardian permission, was 18yrs, so I tried as long as possible to stay up untill that age, alongside occassional suicidal attempts/thoughts.

When I did run away from home at nearly 18yrs, it was alongside an alarming/frightful conversation, with 'male parent', it became life/death situation. I had barely any eduactional qualifications,as I did'nt sit all my exams,due to domestic's at 'home', I felt I had to be around, for support/witness, which no-one even noticed or thanked me for. I was non-existent. For many years after that, going through traumatic court case, and fear of my life, with no 'family' support, it was never discussed,the only person there for me, was landlord of bedsit housing, for vunerable young people, where I was then living. Thankfully, I won the court case, but, I paid high price for my freedom, but it was worth it.

I spent many years throughout my late teens into early adulthood,surrounded by people talking,calling me horrible names and passing judgement, it didn't matter I was the victim, for people, environment I lived/grew up in, I was disgusting. I had absolutely no self-confidence, I learnt about meaning of self-confidence from doing a group course at 'female parent' and baby group club, when I had my daughter, called:Assertiveness, which enlightened me alot. From doing this course,meeting other parent's, it spurned me on to catch up on my education, which I had lost out on.

When my daughter was still young, I enrolled for a Business Admin course,and she attended a childminder, the course was really good,and I made conscious effort to make very little friends, I've always been cautious/non-trustworthy around people, still am today.

My 'male parent', was a music lover and DJ'd whenever he could, alongside working, at one point even released a cover single:KungFu Fighting', didn't get anywhere, that's where my love/passion of music came from. Lyric writing/recording,my escapism, from all things negative. He would take me with him,on most occassions, and DJ'd at end of term discos at my second seconday school. Again,I loved the music, but was cautious about enjoying myself (for fear of trouble later). Over the years, right up untill now, I have had an obsession with learning, and have done various courses, from office related(NVQ2) and music, with accreditation, something I am very proud of. I was originally going to be Nursery Nurse, and applied college, babsitting, etc, but could'nt handle dealing with any cases of childabuse that may come up, to close to 'home'. When in employment, from young adult till now, I have mainly worked in the housekeeping field, basically because you did't need qualiifications for that, easy money at time, but I always wanted more for myself, just could'nt figure out what or direction, aside from knowing it had to do with music.

I moved out of London for nearly five yrs as I needed change of scene, living in area, I grew up in, too many negative familiar faces' and places. When I moved back to London, my daughter now being older and left school, I tried looking for work again, but found it really hard, and by 2yrs of looking the JC was putting pressure on me and January 2010 whilst doing JC there were people handing out leaflets about Personal Best, at the time, I thought,'not another wasteful course, not caring about me, just 'numbers'. After couple of days, I contacted the number given regarding it, and after some conversations, and JC pressuring about provider options, which meant, nothing to me as person, I decided to go for it.

When I turned up in February 2010 at WMC(Working Mens College,Camden)at first,I was extremely sceptical, and thought, 'what have I got myself into',t ry for 2 days, and quit, but I stayed. By the end of the week, I felt, 'hold on', there's some really interesting people here, different stories'/backgrounds, respectful of each other, listening to each other/opinions, and started to 'gel', with some, I thought, 'hello', they're actully interested in ME!!, what I have to say/think, and the tutors aren't 'patronising', or underming, they actually want to know about ME and what I've done want to achieve, where I see myself, my ambitions, my weaknesses/strengths, they really do want to hear about ME.

Words left me, feelings left me, I was dumbstruck!!

It was not like 'school', not kids, we are adults, treated with respect, and most importantly, it was near to home, so no travelling, and some of the people lived near me, so I made some really nice friends, I really enjoyed getting up in morning and going in, my motivation was really kicking in, and the odd outing, as part of course:Volunteering Olympics 2012, was really nice.

For the first time in my life, I actually EXISTED, I was beginning to feel I mattered, I was someone.

By the end of course, I can't describe my feelings exactly, but I know I wanted MORE, I wanted to do more learning, so I inquired about some courses that would help me towards employment, and not housekeeping, I felt I deserved better than that now, something I could personally achieve and feel good/proud about. At the end of the Personal Best course, we did a charity event as a group, in aid of:NSPCC/CHILDLINE, a charity I feel extremely strong about, and the group kindly agreed on this, which I am forever grateful.

It was down to me, for research, etc, no problem, as the charity was launched by Patron:Ezther Rantzen, exactly 2yrs after I had left 'home', if it had been around sooner, I might have left sooner, with their support/guidance. It felt really good to work as team, with people, kind enough, respectful and likeing me to do it. I was nearly in tears when the course finished, I wanted this time to last longer, forever,didn't want to lose what I had now become to enjoy.

I ended up doing in total 2 Computer courses over time:PC STAGE2 and ITQ NEW CLAIT to brush up my computing skills, as it had been a while:Word,Excell and Powerpoint, with Gillian Burton, I enjoyed the course alot, and again, met some nice people, but the joy was doing homework on pc at home ,I loved the fact, I was learning and working towards a certificate, another achievement.

From doing courses, at WMC, I feel my life has transformed. I have my certificates, that no-one can take away from me, they're mine. My self-confidence has improved 50%,I am currently on verge of finishing a music vid, for one on my tracks:I'M IN CONTROL!!, with another former student, Danny, who I really clicked with on mutual enterest in music/media.

I am planning to launch this spring/summer/2012 to launch Internet based radio station, called:CONTROL RADIO . Music genre's:Rock/Pop/Electronica/Indie. Aimed at unsigned UK music artists. Will be holding music events around London/UK for artists to showcase their music/perform,at same time raising awareness/profile for various charities,including: Children/Animals/LGBT/MECFS/Mental Health.

Alongside my daughter,(who's a wonderful, 22 yrs old this year) and disabled boyfriend,(they're not related). I would not be doing ANY of this if I hadn't done the Personal Best course, because before I felt again totally lost, and didn't know what direction, process to do with myself, I felt completely defeated, something I have had almost all my life. It helped me take away/forget all previous suicidal thoughts from my childhood and lifetime struggles. I still stuggle at times,but least now, I have BETTER insight, confidence, motivation, drive to achieve it, given me back, what I never had, A PERSONAL SENSE OF PURPOSE.

I cut off all 'family'/negative contacts, years ago. My 'femal parent' died some yrs back,(no I did'nt attend funeral), my 'male parent' still alive from what I last heard,(yrs ago)dead to me. I banned 'M' or 'D' parent word,around/close to me. I vowed to myself that when I became a parent I would be/do everything that a parent is SUPPOSED to be:LOVING(unconditional),SUPPORTIVE and ENCOURAGING.

I was all of these before,but now I am even BETTER.

I speak on behalf of all victims/survivors in uk: NAPAC, SurvivorsTrust and NSPCC/CHILDLINE there is LIFE after Sexual Abuse/Incest you can get your life back be in CONTROL and be SURVIVOR.

Music is the place to be
Survivor, yes, that's me


Thursday 19 January 2012

Gary Glitter on Twitter? #getglitterofftwitter

I've seen dozens asking "Who is Gary Glitter?" on social networking sites....

Let me enlighten you..... @OfficialGlitter

Glitter was convicted of possession of child pornography in the United Kingdom in 1999, after pleading guilty to 54 offences of making indecent photographs of children.

He was later convicted in Vietnam for committing obscene acts with minors.

He is a sick pedophile.

Whether this is a real account or one of the numerous fakes, it is SICK.

I don't believe in forgive and forget, something one of my past therapists found frustrating about me.

Apparently this account has stated "I want to put everything behind me, time has passed..."

Time has indeed passed but your crimes neither forgotten or forgiven.

Go to hell Gary Glitter, or whoever you are. In my book if it's a fake account the one who set it up is as guilty as Glitter himself.

Ominous as the encroaching night

Ominous as the encroaching night
Chills of despair and hot blurring sight
Flying high the crashing kite
Wasted, burning, wickedly contrite

Lowly silence deep inside
Clawing away with each passing stride
Brightly tarnished ancient pride
All the future be denied

Sighing upon the broken dawn
Vastly stripped the naked pawn
Every value wayward worn
Stagnant be the image torn

Ocean of the salty sea
Washing clean the screaming plea
Deep inside an evil glee
A joyous past not for me

The Boy That Lived

Survivors United

Harry Potter is not the only boy that lived.

The ABC's Of Abuse

                              Abnormal body awareness, numbing, detachment
                              (depersonalization and/or derealization)
                              Abrasions or cuts appearing on the body which have
                              no apparent reasonable explanation
                              Ambidexterity; evidence of different writing styles,
                              widely fluctuating drawing abilities
                              Auditory hallucinations (hearing voices, usually "inside"
                              Behaviour that does not appear "normal" e.g. severe
                              anxiety around other children or adults, antisocial
                              behaviour in the form of hostile aggression or
                              withdrawal behaviour accompanied by depression.
                              Belief that his/her soul is "lost", "sold" or "possessed"
                              Behaviour which indicates apathy or depression
                              Behaviour which is antisocial and hostile in nature
                              Bruises or welts appearing on the body, especially
                              those which reveal the shape of some object which
                              was used to produce them. e.g. sticks, belts, buckles,
                              electric cords, a hair brush, etc.
                              Bruises which are unexplained or located on parts of
                              the body which usually do not get bruised through the
                              bumps and falls of a child's everyday living.
                              Burns caused by rope friction, usually found on legs,
                              arms, neck or torso as the result of having been tied
                              High pain tolerance; lack of awareness of injury or
                              Burns which leave a pattern outlining the object which
                              was used to make the burn such as an iron, electric
                              burner, heater or fireplace tool.
                              Burns with a "sock" or "glove-like" appearance on
                              hands, or feet and " doughnut:" shaped burns on the
                              buttocks. These types of burns are usually caused by
                              either dipping or forcing the child to sit in scalding
                              "Caretaker" tendencies with corresponding
                              self-neglect or abuse
                              Childs clothing appears to be stained, torn or bloody
                              Child continually hungry
                              Child expresses or implies sexual activity with a parent
                              or other adult
                              Child has been diagnosed with having VD of eyes,
                              mouth, genitalia or anus.
                              Child reports pain, itching, bruises, or bleeding in the
                              genital area
                              Child shows withdrawn behaviour, refusing to
                              participate or dress appropriately for physical activities
                              such as swimming
                              Child speaks of home with a lot of fear and anxiety,
                              but is fearful of intervention
                              Chronic bladder infections
                              Chronic night terrors
                              Clothing not suitable for weather conditions
                              Compulsive or obsessive thoughts; rumination
                              Confusion about family roles & relationships;
                              fluctuating knowledge of family roles and relationships,
                              occasional confusion about who is mother or father
                              Confusion and/or concern about what constitutes
                              Consistent lack of cleanliness/or an intense obsession
                              with cleanliness.
                              Convoluted thinking; exaggerated tendency to
                              anticipate the motives of others, especially authority
                              Does not seem to understand play, inability to play,
                              excessively anxious to know "rules"
                              Eating disorders; food phobias, especially "red" food,
                              meat, or herbs (anxiety response rather than simple
                              Epileptic-type seizures or episodes of fainting or
                              unconsciousness with no medical explanation
                              Evidence of frequent trance states (forgetfulness,
                              confused denial of witnessed behavior); high
                              vulnerability to trance state induction (for example,
                              during "storytime" or in response to poetry, music,
                              rhythmic sounds, etc), yet phobic of "formal" hypnosis
                              induction techniques
                              Evidence that the child's physical or medical needs are
                              not being met.
                              Exaggerated startle reflex, especially followed by
                              evidence of dissociation and/or amnesia
                              Exaggerated reliance on state-dependent learning;
                              evidence of inconsistent skills and knowledge
                              Exaggerated sense of guilt and responsibility for others
                              Exaggerated tendency toward age-inappropriate
                              abstract thought or analysis with a corresponding
                              ignorance of basic instinctual knowledge, e.g.
                              abnormal ideas about eating , sleeping , elimination,
                              death, identity
                              Excessive superstition about numbers (especially 3,
                              multiples of 3, 7 & 13) and symbols (especially
                              pentagrams, crosses, circles, runes)
                              Expectation that he/she will be thought "crazy", "bad"
                              or "evil"
                              Extreme compliance with authority figures; severe
                              alienation from peers
                              Extreme fluctuation in skills, behavior, appearance
                              "Flat" affect; confused and/or inappropriate emotional
                              responses, especially to scenes of violence or abuse
                              Fear of being photographed
                              Fear of eye contact
                              Fear of physical contact, hugging, touching
                              Frequent incidence of excema or other symptomatic
                              skin disorders and non-specific skin irritations
                              Frequent somatic symptoms or illness accompanied by
                              lack of complaint (uninitiated disclosure) or awareness
                              Frequent weeping without the ability to relate to a
                              reason, or with denial of emotion
                              Highly phobic with multiple triggers
                              Human bite sized bites, especially those that are adult
                              Hyperviligilance; insomnia (only able to sleep in
                              morning or during daylight)
                              Inability to differentiate fantasy from reality
                              Injuries in various stages of healing which appear in a
                              regular pattern or are grouped together
                              Lack of congruent short-term memory; confused
                              personal history
                              Lack of supervision especially in dangerous situations
                              or while participating in activities which extend over
                              long periods of time.
                              Loss of appetite, refusal to eat
                              Minimal or no ability to defend self; marked
                              inconsistency in aggressive or self-protective abilities
                              Olfactory hallucinations, especially when followed by
                              dissociative episodes
                              Precocious knowledge of metaphysics, philosophy,
                              mythology or ethics, especially with no conscious
                              memory of having studied these subjects); assumption
                              that information or knowledge can "come to you"
                              without learning
                              Rapid mood swings or "simultaneous" contradictory
                              emotions, e.g. laughing and crying, angry yet
                              Ritualized behavior (things must be done in a certain
                              order or in a proscribed way in order to be "safe")
                              Self-mutilation, usually hidden
                              Sexually responsive to perceived "perpetrator" figures;
                              contradictory sexual naivete, modesty, repressed
                              sexuality with others
                              Small circular burns appearing on face, arms, hands,
                              buttocks or soles of feet which may have been inflicted
                              by a cigar or cigarette
                              Statements that imply an assumption of parallel,
                              contradictory realities, for example that there is an
                              "inside" world and an "outside" world with opposing
                              rules, or that everyone performs acts that must be kept
                              Suicidal ideation and attempts from an early age
                              Tattoos or unusual scars (scalp, behind ear, palm of
                              hand, inside thigh, over heart, next to nipples); "box
                              Uncharacteristic episodes of severe, unfocused
                              anxiety, e.g. crouching on floor, rocking, nail biting,
                              compulsive scratching or biting of the self
                              Unexplained fractures to nose, face, ribs, legs or other
                              parts of the body
                              Unwanted pregnancy occurs, and child is afraid to
                              mention partners name
                              Visual hallucinations (blood, knives, animals, eyes)
                              Young Child shows knowledge or interest in adult
                              sexual behaviour, not appropriate for his age group


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