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Please advise me

(38 Posts)
mirrorme Sun 22-Sep-13 19:57:57

Wasn't at all sure where to post this and couldn't really find anywhere relevant, so I'm sorry. Also have nc as know people in rl on here.
I was watching the news the other day (i think friday) and it was the story about the adults who groom children, making them think they are their age and then blackmailing them once they have something over them iyswim.
I was a victim of this as a teenager (probably around 15 years old, I am now 22). I always thought that it was my fault and never said a word to anyone because I was scared of what people would say and knew I should never have sent anything anyway. There is alot of detail to this story but not sure how much detail I should go into as I don't want to upset anyone or anything, but it does follow the general pattern as mentioned on the news- i.e photos, blackmail etc, this was a cycle that carried on for about 3 years. He made a fake account of me and put up various photos on a social networking site at one point when I said I wouldn't send him any more photos.
He finally disappeared eventually (not sure why, possibly because of my age). I have never mentioned this to anyone at all. I am wondering if there is anything I could do. He was not from this country. I feel absolutely terrible that he might (and most probably is) still doing this to other young girls.
I feel sick seeing all this written down. I am just asking for some advice as to whether there is anything I can do now.
Thank you in advance x

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 17:01:32

Sorry have just realised how many times I have said 'etc' in my posts blush

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 14:32:01

Cogito I do understand your point but I don't feel that my dad was or is any kind of bully- yes I do seek his approval, no I don't tell him everything but I have never really been that daughter- my sisters are all very open with him.
I don't know. Maybe I am wrong.
Thank you x

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 14:24:20

You can't be genuinely close with someone if you can't tell them the truth of your life. All you're giving him are approval-seeking edited highlights because you fear a backlash if he knew the full story. When you modify your behaviour or lie about something out of fear, the person you are fearful of is usually a bully.... no matter how funny, kind and generous they are.

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 14:06:27

Cogito- no my dad was lovely- generous, kind, funny and loving but also very strict and we knew not to cross him- he had strict boundaries and rules in place and I crossed these when I went on these sites etc.
I think though that yes he will be angry if I tell him about this- we are close as a father and daughter but I cannot and have not ever been able to talk to him about issues in my life etc. I think he will see it as being my fault as he was very specific in telling me not to talk to people I don't know etc on the Internet.
Buzzard- thank you very much for your supportive message, that was lovely, it would be good if he had been arrested. I think he was from abroad as his flag and time zone were all different etc i.e the settings that I don't think can be changed?

Buzzardbird Mon 23-Sep-13 13:56:14

mirror you are very brave and hopefully the reason the contact with him stopped was because he was arrested. He may not have been from another country as it is unlikely that anything he told you was the truth.
If he was arrested you would not have necessarily been contacted by the police as I have had some similar experience recently.
I think talking to your counsellor will be an excellent place to get the ball rolling and advise you on what to do next.
Good luck to you mirror

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 13:50:10

You realise a psychologist will tell you that growing up being dominated by an angry, distant, judgemental father probably made your encounters with abusive men later on more rather than less likely? Was it all strictness and anger from your father? Did you crave attention and affection? And how terribly sad that you don't feel able to tell him that you were attacked by your ex.

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 13:39:45

I had to grow up quickly at home etc and thought I was streetwise although I just felt lost tbh but i think that's common to feel like that.
My dad will be so angry. He was always so strict with me and never knew I was on these sites etc. He doesn't know about the rape or violence charges against my ex.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 13:34:45

The whole point of adolescence is that we can make mistakes and hopefully learn from them on the road to adulthood Does your comment that you weren't 'a young teenager' mean that your 15yo self was a bit on the wild side or thought she was streetwise? The reason the age of consent stays where it is is because 14yos 15yos - no matter how grown-up they appear - are not mature enough to make certain decisions and this make them very vulnerable.

Who will be angry?

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 12:58:17

I feel I should have known better I wasn't a young teenager or even a young 15 year old iyswim.
I do feel people will be angry but I think I still need to say it now.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 12:27:10

He may have convinced 15yo you that, if you ever told the truth and spoke out, people would be angry at you (or wouldn't believe you or they'd be ashamed of you etc) but surely you can see now that was purely manipulation? No-one would have been angry at you then and they won't be now.

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 11:59:34

Thank you I don't feel it at all. That is a really good idea, I am going to see her tomorrow so I could do that.
I don't want any one to be angry at me.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 11:43:38

FWIW you sound very brave to me smile How about printing out the thread and taking it along as an ice-breaker?

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 11:42:18

Thank you cogito, it really does help to put myself in that position actually. I will speak to my SARC counsellor and see what she says.
It does feel like a massive relief saying it on here. I hope I can be brave enough to say it in rl.
Thank you xxxx

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 09:40:42

That sounds like an excellent idea to talk to the referral centre worker. Please be assured that you are not going to feel this way for ever but it'll take some initial effort to turn your thinking around. e.g. the responsibility for this man's criminal behaviour is his & not his victim's. Take the blame, shame and guilt off your own shoulders and place it squarely on his.

Here's another way to look at it. Imagine a 15yo girl wrote to you anonymously and told you that she was in deep with 'a boyfriend' online and he was making her life miserable demanding sexual pictures, making threats and so on. What would you write back to her? I guarantee you wouldn't be writing that she was a bad or stupid person that had brought it on herself or that she'd put others in danger. So be as kind to yourself as you would be to that 15yo girl.... that will be a start.

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 09:14:05

Thank you cogito. I am worried that I'm going to be like this forever. I feel so so bad at the thought I could have prevented other people from going through this but I can't change what I've done now.
I have been seeing a sexual assault referral centre worker for something I have already reported to the police. I may try to talk to her about it.
Thank you so much for replying x x x

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Sep-13 07:29:39

How you're feeling is normal for abuse victims, unfortunately. He made you feel ashamed and worthless at a key time in your life when your personality was still in flux and experiences determine the kind of adult we become i.e. adolescence. 'Old sins cast long shadows'... the sin being his, of course. You don't have to get therapy or talk to the police right now if you don't want to. You can choose to consign this to the past and keep moving on the way you have been doing already, making the best of it. However, if at any stage you think that you could benefit from some professional guidance or if you feel this loose end is preventing you from leading a normal, happy life, then it's never too late to ask for help.

mirrorme Mon 23-Sep-13 07:13:44

Thank you, EHoney, that was very helpful to read. I am glad I posted.
Fifi, it wasn't Facebook- I was 'friends' with him on 3 social networking sites that were popular, I don't have access to any of them as I deleted all the profiles. I feel stupid for doing that too.
You have all been so helpful to me I do feel ashamed and bad but I do understand what you are all saying. Thank you x

fifi669 Sun 22-Sep-13 23:02:33

If your networking site was Facebook, doesn't using your old log in details deactivate your account thus finding more clues to this weirdo?

EHoneybadger Sun 22-Sep-13 23:01:31

I listened to this story on the news and remembered mum and dad always telling me there was nothing I could do that would ever stop them loving me not even the most terrible thing I could imagine. They never elaborated why they said that but reassured me I could and should feel able to talk to them about anything and they would look after me. It didn't make much sense to me at the time but I thought it was a nice thing to know.

My dad worked in social work; child protection. This was back in the 70s. It was before the Internet but when I heard the tragic story of a boy killing himself on the news, suddenly I realized that he must have seen some awful things and was trying to let his children know they would always be safe even from the most awful secret and was trying to tell us it was safe to come to him and mum no matter what.

Thank god we never needed to but I think that message needs repeating even more now.

To OP, you have done nothing wrong. You have nothing to be ashamed of and you will be believed. Please talk to somebody you trust. You have every right to be here. I know this being dragged up will stir up horrible memories and make you feel exposed but you are not alone. If nothing else you have people on here who believe you and wish you well and will talk to you.

Please take some comfort from that and look after yourself. xxx

EHoneybadger Sun 22-Sep-13 22:43:58

Lurker here. I don't post very often but wanted to now to say I believe you too and so will other people.

It is not your fault and anything he may or may not have done or go on to do is not your fault either.

You were young and vulnerable (still are to me as an oldie in my 40s).

I hope you take the advice to seek help for yourself. You deserve to have a happy and full life and deserve any help you need to find that.

If you feel strong enough I hope you succeed in adding to the weight of evidence that will stop him but I understand why that thought is overwhelming.

Sending good thoughts and wishes your way as it is all I can do but really hope you move forward and are okay.
xx

mirrorme Sun 22-Sep-13 22:37:30

I don't want to be here anymore sad

mirrorme Sun 22-Sep-13 22:24:01

Thank you, so much x x x

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 22-Sep-13 22:20:36

It's actually OK to moan. smile Talking is the way through this. Abuse is extremely traumatic, very damaging, and what you're experiencing... the flashbacks, the realisations, the negative impact on your subsequent life, the guilt ... it wouldn't be an exaggeration to call it Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

I don't know you from Adam and I don't think it was in any way your fault. I believe you and so will others. You've coped alone so far but I think you deserve to be listened to by someone that can help you progress further.

mirrorme Sun 22-Sep-13 22:13:23

I haven't told anyone about this no I feel that it's my fault as I really shouldn't have been speaking to him in the first place.
I don't think I can cope I thought I was starting to deal with the relationship I have just come out of and now I have realised this sad sorry I don't want to be moaning x

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 22-Sep-13 22:07:14

Have you ever told anyone IRL what happened? Someone you trust? I think it's significant that you've felt able to post here anonymously - maybe treat that as a springboard to telling someone else. If not the police maybe Samaritans as an intermediate step?

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