I absolutely categorically unequivocally hate men and it's making me miserable.(21 Posts)
Mainly because I have 3 DS and it is undoubtedly affecting my parenting. This is horrific but I don't trust my DS not to turn out to be a danger to me I hate myself for saying this.
I have been raped by a cousin, raped by my ex husband and royally fucked over by a rebound man. I hate men. I have such rage that they have physically and emotionally over powered me to the point that I'm suicidal. I can't stand it. I can't stand that they took my virginity, my trust, my faith without giving a fuck. What do I do? I can't let my ds's life be fucked up by my inability to get past it. It's not normal to worry that your sons will grow up to be rapists or murderers is it? They are 7 and 12 ffs and I'm lying awake worrying about them destroying a girl. My sense of male is so warped. I don't know what to do.
It's understandable that you hate all men because of what several men have done to you.
It's obviously not logical or 'normal' (as you are aware), but is understandable.
I assume you have sought therapy for this issue? A good therapist will help you see that your thinking is faulty, and will give you strategies to catch these thoughts and change them at the time you have them.
It will take time, and progress won't be linear. But you need to take that first step.
Your sons will be very much what you and your partner make of them.
I have been hurt by both men and women throughout my life. You can't hate people because of their gender. In fact, the psychological pain that some women inflicted on me has been horrendous, quite destructive in many ways. I don't hate women, though.
Of course rape is really traumatic, and that is something you need to address, and seek counselling for. I can understand where your fears are coming from but you shouldn't project those fears onto your sons.
I have two sons and they are the most loving, caring little people in the world. They have taught me what the real meaning of love is. I wouldn't want someone to tell me they are potential rapists or women haters, just because they are male.
You have the power to teach your sons respect, love and caring attitudes towards others.That's the great thing about being a parent.
Thank you both for your kind words.
I look at my ds's and they are kind, funny, lovely boys and feel so much guilt about the possibility I am projecting this rubbish on to them.
I am receiving counselling from rape crisis but I am stalling with it to be honest. My counsellor says I am so disassociated from the rapes that I understand my feelings and actions on a cognitive level but emotionally I just don't get there. It just feels so far away that I can manage and overcome the fear, disgust, shame and rage. I try so hard to let it not define me but it keeps returning.
So many women end up abused and the trauma can and does ruin lives. I understand your hatred of men...I feel like that most of the time if I'm honest and until I know them properly, treat them with a cool disdain.
Like you, I have a son and he is the light of my life! How I've managed not to project that disdain on him is simple. A mother's love. And your love for your boys will protect them from growing up feeling rejected by you. Trust me on that.
As for dealing with your fears, talking therapies should help though you say you get it on the cognitive level but not on the emotional? That's probably because emotionally, you've gone into meltdown and can't actually feel anything anymore. Its a sort of detachment, a protective veneer to keep you functioning day to day but unable to respond to anything emotionally highly charged.
How do you get past it? Time, counselling, expressing what must be a deep seated anger, even rage I should think. You need to get it out. If you can't talk to someone about it, how about writing it all down in a journal? I think it would do you good to spend a few minutes each day, on your own, with your own thoughts and writing it down in a private notebook. It would help your counsellor too to work out healing strategies for you.
You're very brave asking for help. I wish I had a magic wand that made everything perfect, but I don't. I can only wish you well and leave you in the certain knowledge that you are a far superior person, a decent, thoughtful, caring person; unlike those bastards who damaged you so badly.
Don't let them win.
Why don't you start by reframing this to- you hate those men for what they did to you. Remember yours boys aren't the same as them men and there are plenty of good men too.
I know of lots of awful men, I know of lots of good women. I know of lots of awful women and good men. Gender doesn't decide if a person is good or bad, the person decides with their actions. I totally understand why you feel this way, but perhaps a bit of counselling will give you perspective.
EMDR therapy would really help in this case. Endless talking is going to take endless years and you haven't got that time as you are clear on wanting to enjoy and love your sons NOW.
It is especially good for trauma, which rape is, and unbelievably effective if you can find a really good therapist. I have one in mind although it is several years since I met her. She was based in the Plymouth area but believe me she is worth traveling to. If you want me to message you I will but not unless you ask as this is your life and decision and I don't want to interfere, only help.
I've had EMDR for severe flashbacks, I wonder if it could be something I revisit?
pallasathena I'm fed up of being brave and strong and stoic. I feel broken. My counsellor is always saying she wants to see me gave a bit more joy in my life but that seems so unrealistic. I just wanted one thing in the past year to be fun and go right and it spectacularly back fired on me so now I just think fuck it I end up miserable anyway so I'll just close down to men. I find it really hard to believe that there are good men out there who don't want to use their physical or emotional strength to abuse someone. If they have that power they will (or have in my case) use it. I know this isn't rational or fair. I am trying so hard not to be wary of my sons. I don't want to push them away but worry that I'm so far gone in my distrust that I will.
I hate myself for that.
You have been severely sexually abused by some nasty, nasty men. Your boys are not like those men. They are your own flesh and blood, dependant upon you for their wellbeing, happiness and self esteem. You have to sort out this trauma before it eats you up.
And you also need validation. People who suffer this type of abuse suffer in silence. A silence that protects the aggressor and mentally, emotionally, scars the victim.
i'd go to the police to get closure. Tell the police what happened. You must have closure on this.
weed I've been there, when every man seems like they were put on the face of the earth just to torment women in general and you in particular.
I do think you need to get this sorted before it affects your relationship with your boys. EMDR is definitely worth looking into, but I think you also need some specific, reliable methods to change your thought patterns around "all men", so that you can re-frame those thoughts into positive ones about your DC. Can your existing counsellor help with this? Can you come up with some strategies together?
About having joy in your life: perhaps you can also discuss with the counsellor some things which could bring you joy that don't revolve around other people's connections with you? Learning to draw. Taking up running. Volunteering at the RSPCA. Lifting weights. Growing your own vegetables. Something that is for YOU and doesn't rely on other people, if you see what I mean.
Lastly just wanted to say that I have been through that period of intense rage and hatred and it DOES go away, if you keep working through the feelings. That anger is very healthy and it does need to come out, but it isn't infinite. I know I used to fear that my anger would totally consume me and there'd be nothing left of me, just a fire-blackened shell. It didn't. I'm still here. I am reserved with men now, until I know them very well, and cultivate more friendships with women. I bear in mind that both women and men can hurt me, but men can do more physically as they usually have more physical strength. I keep that fact in mind, but do not let it rule me. You will reach this point also. Your anger will turn to strength.
pocket thank you I think I am consumed with rage at the moment and it is frightening me that I will always feel this way. My counselling is bringing lots of long buried feelings to the fore, my ability to disassociate has been first rate but not very healthy, I literally have denied and minimised for 25 years. Yesterday I read an article about a woman who was raped, for the first time I didn't feel sorry or upset just for her but myself too. I let myself be identified with the shame etc.
So the feelings are coming out but I'm really scared! It feels really uncomfortable, how long did it take for things to settle.
Pallas there is an ongoing police investigation into my cousin as he abused a number if children. I'm not finding this process helpful at all. The police and isva are terrible at communicating so I have alot if free ranging anxiety floating about. No reassurance or time frame etc. Aaargh, writing it all down is making me really pissed off
The physical strength point is what's really fuelling my fear I guess. Both physically overpowered me during the rapes and ex H was very very physically violent. I literally was frozen in fear and they knew that.
My ds's won't be like this. I'll have to make sure.
If you do feel suicidal, or headaches appear, talking about it, stop the talk therapy. Talking makes it worse for some people.
Agree with PP- if you are/were disassociated, lots of talk therapy will just re-traumatise you, so EMDR, or a motion based therapy like Somatic Experiencing or TRE would be better. "Waking the Tiger" by Peter Levine is a good intro to the ideas behind movement based therapies for trauma. They are really good for when you were in physical danger, frozen or over powered. Working through this book "Trauma Releasing Exercises (Tre): A Revolutionary New Method for Stress/Trauma Recovery" really helped me. It got me to a point I could talk about things without feeling suicidal.
When you get to a better place, something else that helped me get through the aftermath of sexual assault and get to grips with it was something so simple. I read it on a forum for survivors. Someone said "Let every good interaction you have with a man act as a positive therapy." So every man who held open a door, helped me in the supermarket, someone at work who was happy to be a sounding board, I started seeing those little things. In my interactions and those of other people I saw. So I started seeing the guys who were just good to women as a natural thing, saw how the guys who wouldn't dream of being violent or manipulative just went about being decent all day (and with a little bit of looking, you start to better see the difference between the ones who are good/pleasant because they want something and the ones who were just well brought up and good natured). It helped me a lot.
weed I went through phases with my rage that basically synced up with my healing process.
Nobody ever told me it was okay to be angry at what was done to me. My anger was scorned and punished by both my dad (abuser) and mum (enabler). It wasn't until well after I left home and sought counselling for the first time that I was told it was okay to be angry.
If I expressed anger as a child I was punished (dad) or emotionally abandoned (mum). So anger felt incredibly frightening to me; I thought if I expressed it, I would literally die. It took a long time to switch my thinking to understanding that I had to allow that anger to find its expression.
I'm gonna say about a year, in my case, from when I started expressing anger without fear of punishment. My H, who was also a survivor, helped me through that a lot. Just him saying it was okay to be bloody furious about not just the abuse, but the covering up by my mum, went a huge way towards getting rid of it.
My DS is 20 now and I know he knows everything necessary about consent. He has his own anger problems, stemming from abuse by his birth mum and her partner, but he has worked very hard to manage those, and mostly succeeds.
It's been a slow process to stop suppressing my anger - not about the abuse, just every day stuff - because I was trained so effectively not to show it (or fear, or pain, or sadness, for that matter.) It's been in the last year or so that I feel I've really cast off the last chains of my childhood.
There's a book called Homecoming, by John Bradshaw which has some inner child visualisation exercises which I've found immensely helpful. You might like to take a look at it. Although I was assaulted hundreds of times as a child, and raped repeatedly within a relationship in my 20s, it's the childhood wounds that seem to linger longest, and sink the deepest roots into your soul. You can read some of the content on the Amazon page if you use the "Look inside" thingy.
Thank you so much pocket and zazie I will definitely read the books you have recommended.
I am having a break now for summer from the counselling due to childcare problems, I think I need to stop talking about it for a while. I have been having lots of suicidal thoughts and am stuck in the thought pattern that the dc's would be better off without me and my emotional state is fucking up their lives, they would be better off being raised by someone who isn't as depressed. Another thread on here has made me realise that this is my mental health consuming me so I'm going to speak to my GP about adjusting my medication.
On the other hand, weed, I think your DSs will benefit immensely from having a mother for whom certain awful issues of the world have been brought so sharply into focus. At least you won't tolerate even the slightest bit of misogynistic behaviour from them, right?
Good luck with trying to sort things out a bit with the GP.
I'm sure there is a reason why you are their mother and there will never be anyone better to look after then weed. So, so sorry to hear what you went through and what you are going through but you sound like a very caring and loving mother.
As for men, I never had your experience, because most men are decent and pretty good. I wish you well on the road to being able to accept that.
Weed, I think it would help you if you tried to distinguish between men and culture.
Those disgusting men who raped you didn't rape you because of some intrinsic awfulness that all men possess but because they were brought up in a culture that enables some men to feel they are entitled to women's bodies without their consent.
When you see that you'll see that it is everywhere, the way women are constantly portrayed as being for men's titillation and the way in which rape victims of famous men are treated with such disbelief.
What I'm trying to say is that what affects your how your boys turn out is the culture in which they are brought up in and you have a big hand in shaping that. They will be lovely young men because you will be there to teach them to be kind and respect women and their boundaries.
Some sons don't bully their mothers, some sons do and there's nothing really you, as a mother, can do to mitigate how your son turns out.
A case in point: mothers are not to blame if their son decides to rape a woman. He is solely to blame.
Some psychologists do indeed try to blame mothers for men's atrocities but that blaming of women for male crimes is a symptom of the institutional power men have.
Having an awareness of how power in society works can only help you, it's not a hindrance.
There's every chance your boy will be a sensitive, empathetic and loving adult. It helps if there is no abusive father in the background "turning him into a man", mocking tears and sensitivity etc.
Sakura I hope that knowledge does allow me to parent and navigate my fins through adolescence effectively. I've just had a innocent enough conversation (initiated by him) with ds1 who is 12. He was talking to me about one of his peers who has a different 'girlfriend' every week and dumps them and cries about it in front of the group. DS has come up the conclusion that this boy doesn't respect the girls. I think I'm doing better than I thought.
Books have been ordered to focus on my core beliefs and internal messages. I have also been watching any men I come into contact with at work (mostly policemen and paediatricians) as I work in children's social care. I have been mentally noting any incidences of respectful and non aggressive behaviour to try condition the thought that it is not ALL men.
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