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How do I deal with this, just found out that I was more abused than i know about and/or raped???

(10 Posts)
LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:26:26

NC - Background, as a child I was badly sexually abused consecutively for 3 years by a family member. This all came out when I was about 9, fully supported, it went to court, he was prosecuted, I attended counselling etc, etc and all in all I feel have grown up to live a very normal, happy life in which I came to terms with what happened and have moved on.
In a family conversation the other day it was revealed that the police, doctors and family suspected that I had also been very badly abused and/or raped as a young child when I was 3. Apparently I had serious internal scarring. At the time when it would have happened no-one had suspected family member but I spent a long period of time with them when my mum was very ill. There was not enough evidence to prosecute on this and as a child they didn't want to push me and felt the grounds for prosecuting the later on-going abuse was enough.
I had no idea about this suspicion of earlier activity or about the level of scarring. It did literally just come out in a normal conversation when I was discussing the events and how we had dealt with them in the past (which we don't do very often). I was shocked and really taken back by this and not sure how to process it, do I ignore it, do I just put it to one side? I have no memory of this at all, so this information just seems random and out of place for me, like I have read it in a book... Don't know what to think or feel.

Lottapianos Wed 03-Apr-13 14:32:34

LittleHolly101, I am so sorry to hear your story about what you experienced as a child. This new information must be extremely unsettling for you and it's understandable that you're wondering what on earth to do with it.

Can you identify any emotions you feel at the moment? Or do you just feel numb? You don't have to do anything with it right now, there's no 'right' way to react to information like this.

You mentioned seeing a counsellor in the past - would you consider seeing a counsellor/therapist again? However you feel right now, your feelings may change over time and it's important that you get to explore them in a safe place with someone who will give you time and space and guide you through it

Again, I'm so sorry for what you went through.

crashmat Wed 03-Apr-13 14:43:06

Really sorry this happened to you holly rubbish isn't it?

I have had similar happen to me, I can remember some of my sexual abuse from about 5/6 years old but found out about earlier unknown abuse from my medical notes (requested them for something else unrelated). They stated that my mum took me to the docs at 3 years and I had 'swelling and scar tissue that corresponds with sexual penetration'. All very confusing because my abuser was a child too (about 8-10 years older than me) so don't fully understand. I think I have just put this aside mentally because I can not form a lucid memory of it. I have been diagnosed with PTSD and my psych has said that it was probably due to the trauma of it and my young age I just didn't process it and blocked it. My thinking is I know I have been abused, I see it all as being invaded so doesn't make much difference to me the grade or socially catagorised severity of it. Do you think it makes a difference to you?

LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:47:28

Thanks for the response Lotta, no I just feel numb towards it really, it is odd I feel like it happened to another little girl then I get protective feelings for that little girl and angry for that little girl but can't seem to match that child up with myself.
I have seen a counsellor in adulthood when needed and feel no issue with doing this but no idea what I would say to them. Part of me feels it is a can of worms I should leave closed. It was always a really important point to me that I thought I was never actually raped, it helped me deal with all the issues and some made me still feel normal but I don't know how to feel if that barrier/ protection is taken away.
Any why did my parents not tell me earlier? I think they thought they were protecting me by seemed surprised I didn't know when it came out! all a bit confusing!

LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:47:42

Thanks for the response Lotta, no I just feel numb towards it really, it is odd I feel like it happened to another little girl then I get protective feelings for that little girl and angry for that little girl but can't seem to match that child up with myself.
I have seen a counsellor in adulthood when needed and feel no issue with doing this but no idea what I would say to them. Part of me feels it is a can of worms I should leave closed. It was always a really important point to me that I thought I was never actually raped, it helped me deal with all the issues and some made me still feel normal but I don't know how to feel if that barrier/ protection is taken away.
Any why did my parents not tell me earlier? I think they thought they were protecting me by seemed surprised I didn't know when it came out! all a bit confusing!

LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:50:36

Crossed posts crashmat, thanks for the response, as said above really for some reason this does make a difference for me. I know it sounds odd but the fact I was never actually raped (as far as I know) mattered, it kind of made it easier to process, silly really given the fact that actually a lot of the things that did happen were equally as horrific, it just was my one thing to cling onto....

LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:51:10

P.S. Sorry to hear we share this past crashmat. x

crashmat Wed 03-Apr-13 14:53:05

Think what I was trying to say (in a very cack handed way, sorry, I think your post was triggering for me so my thoughts are bit scrambled) is that when I was talking this through with my CPN I was questioning whether my abuse would really be seen as abuse as it was by a child she said 'Did it feel like abuse then and does it now?' My answer was yes so she said I'm the only one in a position to classify it. It follows that it doesn't really matter about the severity of the actual physical act, what matters and impacts is the way it makes you feel. I can't get a grip on how the knowledge of what happened to my 3 year old self affects me now because I can't remember it.

crashmat Wed 03-Apr-13 14:58:13

Hmm, maybe that is the difference between us then Holly. I always knew I had been raped so I didn't have that 'At least that didn't happen...'

I have the same problems with my parents too. They didn't tell me about the DR's visit when I was 3 and when I asked my mum she said she couldn't remember. Very odd thing not to at least gently approach when the daughter is coming up to being consenting sexually active.

LittleHolly101 Wed 03-Apr-13 19:40:39

Its a difficult one for me as I want to ask my mum more about it but I think she struggles talking about it more than I do. May be it is best left dead and buried...

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