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I was abused - should I go to the police?

(29 Posts)
ManicPanic Sat 02-Apr-11 16:00:07

Abused as a child - 'historic' child abuse as they call it. I had a breakdown several months ago and I realised this was a contributing factor. Thought about going to the police then, my mental health worker suggested that I wait until I felt stronger (I was pretty suicidal) and I agreed.

I know he has access to children (his own grandchildren!) and as he is not an old man, he is still very much a threat imo. I know he has abused 1 other girl around the same time as he did me, I have my suspicions about another girl, and I will be very surprised if we are the only ones. His behaviour is still weird tbh from what I know and I don't think he will have changed at all.

So other children are at risk and it is 20 years ago and I have done nothing. I feel awful. I should be doing something.

I know the police will take him to the station to discuss the allegations but then what? He was 11 / 12 when he committed the crimes I am aware of. I have no witnesses, I am an ex-drug addict with mental health ishoos and holes in my memory (because of what he did to me). I don't feel that putting myself through a court case will be helpful. I don't think I will 'win.' But there has to be some consequence, and some way to at least 'point him out' and not let this dirty secret fester. I know what he is, others should too.

Any ideas or advice would be brilliant, and well done for reading this far. Sorry if this has upset anyone, I tried to make the title pretty descriptive so people wouldn't click if they would find it upsetting.

Grabaspoon Sat 02-Apr-11 16:01:48

You don't think he's changed since he was 11.

madmouse Sat 02-Apr-11 16:07:07

I did go to the police for the same reason as you - to stop him abusing others. it was very heavily on my mind. In the country where I was abused the law said that it was too late for me to bring a case, but at least I tried.

Re-offending rates among sex offenders are sky high, but I don't know if that applies to child offenders too.

I suggest you contact Victim Support for advice and support.

But remember that keeping yourself safe and in one piece is an absolute priority.

ManicPanic Sat 02-Apr-11 17:26:22

I was referring to the feeling that I don't think he has changed in that way. He was a sex obsessed predator at the age of 11, what do you think he will be like now?

I used to work with sex offenders and I know that once that line is crossed, it's difficult for them not to cross it again and again and again.

Of course he's changed since he's 11, I may be many things but stupid is not one of them.

Prolesworth Sat 02-Apr-11 17:32:24

Message withdrawn

Pagwatch Sat 02-Apr-11 17:35:49

I hate to state the obvious but I think you are asking a question that only you can answer. Only you know if you are strong enough to deal with ten shit storm. Only you (as opposed to anyone reading her) know the consequences of not speaking up - what threat he may pose.

I think victim support is a good idea. Go and talk to someone who can help you weigh this choice.
When I spoke up I got nothing but shit. But I wa glad I actually said it out loud iyswim, I actually said ' this man did this'

Talk to someone in rl. No one on here can weigh the choice effectively.

SooooCynical Sat 02-Apr-11 17:40:44

If you're strong enough it is always worth reporting this to the Police especially if he still has access to children. The Police when it comes to child abuse aren't just about prosecuting it's also about Safeguarding children.

Also it maybe there are other victims who have been too frightened to come forward or didn't think they would be believed and all it takes is for one person to step forward to open the floodgates.

However it is your well being that is paramount and it is only a step you should take if you feel able to cope with all eventualities.

Desiderata Sat 02-Apr-11 17:46:10

I agree with PagWatch. Even if someone has been through similar, the individual experience ought to dictate your actions from hereon in.

I don't think MN is the right forum for this. From your post, this guy is a 31 year old grand-father, so early sexual experience would seem normal for him and his kin.

Whether he is a threat or not, I do not know.

ManicPanic Sat 02-Apr-11 17:51:55

Yes Desi you are right - unbelievably he is a grandad in his 30's.

I was just interested to hear other peoples experiences and opinions of the facing the shit storm versus the standing up for myself and others. Also I feel for my family, it is dh and dd who will ahve to put up with the ripple effect that shopping this bastard will cause. For all I know he could turn up on my doorstep the day after.

I do not know for sure one way or the other if he is a threat to others. But common sense and experience tell me it is damn likely.

Tbh I don't understand why mumsnet isn't the right forum for this.

Desiderata Sat 02-Apr-11 17:56:53

Because we are not experts, Manic. And more particularly, because he was a child himself at the time.

I can remember playing with my girlfriends when I was that age. I might have been construed as sexual abuse, but it was simple exploration on the cusp of adolescence.

Without any particular proof that he has 're-offended', I'm not sure there's a case to answer here.

Prolesworth Sat 02-Apr-11 18:00:22

Message withdrawn

bittersweetvictory Sat 02-Apr-11 18:03:53

Yes you should go to the police especially as he has access to other children, the police will not judge you on your past, many abused people ( myself included ) end up on drugs and with mental health problems, i went to the police about 5 years ago as i was terrified that he would do it to someone else and i couldnt live with the guilt of not doing everything in my power to stop him doing it to someone else and fucking up their inocent lives, the sense of relief i felt when i had done it was amazing and was the first day of the start of my recovery, he is dead now and i hope he is rotting in hell, so yes you must go to the police.

Pagwatch Sat 02-Apr-11 18:08:34

And mn is not the right forum because we don't know you, we don't know how you would cope with this, if you should even try.

I can talk about my experiences but what if I ask you if you think I am over it?
How would you possibly know.

We cannot possibly advise you on a course of action where we have no information upon your ability to deal with it, let alone whether it would be worthwhile.

Desiderata Sat 02-Apr-11 18:11:32

But you have to ask what come first, particularly where drugs are involved.

The OP has clearly stated that she is an ex-drug addict. It is far too simplistic to assume that she took to drugs because of childhood abuse (from another child).

It may well be the drugs that have clouded her experience. I'm afraid it is something of a chicken and egg situation, and without solid proof that this man has continued his sexual proclivities into adulthood, the police will simply refer to the OP's drugged past, and dismiss her.

You must be very certain of your ground before your proceed.

ManicPanic Sat 02-Apr-11 23:48:32

We often (and often with good reason!) say 'leave him!' on relationships threads where there has been domestic / emotional abuse. We don't know them, we don't know how they will cope with it, or if they should even try (high statistical likelihood of a woman being seriously assaulted or even killed while trying to exit the relationship)

Desiderata let me assure you that I was not his first or last victim, that he was most likely a victim himself, he groomed me, gained my trust, manipulated me, scared me, controlled me, humiliated me and was very much not playing at doctors and nurses with me in an innocent way.

I know that when abuse is committed by children people are more hesitant to call it abuse. But he was over the age of 10, so legally responsible I think? But to be honest if you are raped, for instance, the age of your attacker does not change the psychological effect of the rape, if you see what I mean? And it makes my stomach churn to mention it but it reminds me of the age of Jamie Bulgers murderers - Jamie is no less dead just because they were children themselves.

I almost find it funny that anyone may think I have miscontrued the abuse that has fucked up my life, my relationships, my ability to trust, my view of men, my view of myself. Again I repeat I am not stupid, fucked up yes, but not stupid.

I hope you will all excuse me if I get emotional and snappy (seems to be the way I am at the moment)

bittersweet thank you for sharing your experience, and madmouse too, I will have a look at the Victim Support website as soon as I have a chance (without dd here!)

And I did take drugs to block out this abuse, NPD mother, rape, miscarriage and depression. Not too simplistic at all - when I started to try and go clean I would start having flashbacks immediatedly. The drugs came first.

GKlimt Sun 03-Apr-11 00:03:26

What does your mental health worker think - is now the right time?

Whilst, I agree that it's a decision which only you can make -I do feel that you need RL support, ideally from a HCP

ManicPanic Sun 03-Apr-11 00:04:20

Prolesworth both of the other girls were part of a church, I think my best chance would be tracing them through that.
I have done my best via google but no luck!

ManicPanic Sun 03-Apr-11 00:05:53

I have support from my counsellor, I may hang on a bit until I am seeing the psychologist though to actually take action

I think it's been good for me to just say 'this happened to me and it was wrong and illegal and I could go to the police'

ManicPanic Sun 03-Apr-11 00:06:19

Although saying that I am still totally undecided

giggly Sun 03-Apr-11 00:42:08

MP I think it is awful for the suggestion that MN is not the right forum. Why not?
Glad you came back to clarify your drug historywink not that you have to! In 22 years of working within addictions I think it is very simplistic about drug use used to dumb emotions. Please keep going with your support as this will continue to impact on your life.

It still amazes me that some people think becoming addicted to drugs/drink is a life choice.
Sometimes just having some control as to whether you tell your life history is enough.

In my experience the Police are very good in dealing with historical abuse. They will ascertain his access to children at this time and take action from there.
For all you know someone else may have already reported him and they(the Police) may be waiting for corroborating evidence. You can report him and then take no further action if you feel you would be unable to cope.

Any criminal action will depend on enough evidence for the PF office.

You sound as if you have pulled your life back on track and that is no easy feat, for that I applauded

GKlimt Sun 03-Apr-11 00:47:18

Is there any reason you have to decide now. Be gentle with yourself as it wouldn't be an easy path.

madmouse Sun 03-Apr-11 08:43:37

I am also totally puzzled by suggestions that this does not belong on MN - I fully agree with MP that we happily tell women to leave their partners without knowing the woman or the full story! She is just thinking out loud about the way forward with any support welcome.

And as for what role the drugs play well that's totally irrelevant. I was raped regularly from the age of 8 and if you haven't been through it you have no idea how it messes up every single aspect of your life mind and personality. Any means of coping and surviving is permitted! I could write a list as long as your elbow with all my coping mechanisms. Just drugs happen not to be one of them.

Oh and MP deserves a lot of respect for turning her life around and for considering reporting the man despite the risks for herself (the time when I went to the police with my history was extremely traumatic and I came back not believing my own memories for a time and very messed up).

Pagwatch Sun 03-Apr-11 09:27:47

Good grief.

I am not suggesting for a moment that manic shouldn't come here for advice or support.of course I am not!
But I think this is a case where asking if she should take x action, whilst having already stated that her mental health worker suggested she was not ready to proceed fairly recently, I would be surprised if anyone would really be prepared to say ' yeah, sure, go to the police'

I am just suggesting - having been in almost exactly this situation and personally knowing how hideous the fall out is, that seeking the more pertinent advice of those directly involved may be prudent.

But then I don't think I have ever posted " leave him " in my life. So may e others are more comfortable giving out such sweeping advice than I.

I shall withdraw now . But please could subsequent posters please stop implying that I suggested op should not discuss on mn. I merely think personal and possibly professional real life gel is essential if op is to protect her emotional well being.
I am not sure why that is unreasonable

madmouse Sun 03-Apr-11 09:37:20

Sorry Pag I came out a bit strongly there and it was certainly not meant as a personal attack on you. It's not an area in which I'm always totally reasonable and calm.

Pagwatch Sun 03-Apr-11 09:37:47

Do you know what, I need to apologise because having read my second comment, it does read as if I am saying it shouldn't be discussed here.

That was not at all what I meant. I meant you cannot get a definate answer here. Not that you cannot get support and discuss it.

So apologies for being less clear in my second comment. I can see why you misinterpreted what I was trying to say.

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