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*triggering* If you have an known abuser in your family why the fuck

(52 Posts)
CookieDoughKid Sun 17-Apr-16 08:26:41

Do you insist on having the abuser and abused in the same room? Why do you not talk about the abuse in your family, with your wider family? Why do you not openly acknowledge what happened with the victim and their family? Why do you stay in contact with the abused? Why do you sweep it under the carpet? Can you not see that the abused does not want to keep in touch with you because of your lax inconsiderate attitude?

I am not a researcher. I am a mum who's ds was abused by her uncle and I am sick of always hearing the same on mumsnet that families choose to sweep the crime under the carpet.

I'd like to hear from you. I want to hear why you choose to do what you do as I don't understand the rationalisation behind it.

CookieDoughKid Sun 17-Apr-16 08:28:31

Sorry bad spelling previous. My question is really this:Why do you stay in contact with the abuser? And why can't you see putting the abused and abuser in the same room is a bad idea?

Hassled Sun 17-Apr-16 08:29:15

I don't understand the rationalisation either. If a sibling of mine abused a grandchild of mine I'd never see them again. I might miss the person they used to be or the closeness we had as kids or whatever, but I'd still never see them again.

pocketsaviour Sun 17-Apr-16 08:36:03

This isn't really something that can be answered in a post or thread, OP, because there are so many factors which feed into that cowardly decision.

You may find Alice Miller's work helpful in understanding more, although her work can be a bit technical for lay people to read. Thou Shalt Not Be Aware is probably the most pertinent.

So sorry for what happened to your DS. You are clearly a fierce advocate for your DS and that alone will help him recover and heal much more easily than those whose parents insist on perpetuating the myth of the happy family.

Anniegetyourgun Sun 17-Apr-16 08:38:30

I think to some people it's too awful to get their heads round, so they just kind of pretend it didn't happen or wasn't really a big deal and it will all be fine as long as it looks fine. It's in the past, everyone is friends now, isn't that great? Which is pretty nearly as fucked up as the abuser themselves IMO.

PovertyPain Sun 17-Apr-16 08:38:45

I don't think you'll get anyone to answer your question OP, because these same scumbags that keep the pieces of shit in their lives, at the expense of the victim, will never admit they're wrong. They would rather ignore/minimise/deny the abuse, than rock their own false world, as they don't want to face up to the fact that they may have failed the victim in some way.

Randsmeduck Sun 17-Apr-16 08:47:09

I have a relative who abused several family members, having been jailed for at least one.
There was a family and friends party and this abuser turned up, having been invited by the party organiser, his sibling. Not everyone at the party would be aware of his past.
I saw the photos on facebook and I felt sick. There were young children running around, thankfully none of his victims were there.
I really don't understand it.

Anniegetyourgun Sun 17-Apr-16 08:50:14

Ooh, my word disappeared, that should have been looks (in italics).

I also wonder if there's an element in some cases of thinking that shit happens and a child has to learn to deal with it. Fair enough up to a point, but beyond that point it sucks, and frankly in this context is no more than a weak justification for their own failure to tackle the issue.

twirlypoo Sun 17-Apr-16 08:50:20

My mum has done this with me and my abuser (a foster brother)

I will never know for sure, but I think it stems from just wanting desperately for everything to be 'normal' and okay. She said that I behaved so normally that it was hard to believe it had happened, and that she still cares for them even though they hurt me. She sees herself as being torn between 2 people she loves, and mentioned that the other person has no one if she cuts them off. She becomes very cross and indignant if pulled up in this (I had therapy and she accused me of slagging her off and that other people don't understand what it is like for her)

Apparently I can be quite dramatic about it at times too, and that makes me less believable so she will never really know what happened as she remembers events differently to me.

I now insist on just not being there, I won't let her talk to me about them either (she used to try and work his name into conversations as apparently it is still a part of her life and she should be able to talk about that) i will literally stand up and walk away now if she tries.

I am so very sorry about your DS, I am glad he has such a fierce advocate in you thanks

twirlypoo Sun 17-Apr-16 08:52:33

I should also add - she is very vocal about what a bad start my foster brother had, how he was abused himself and that therefore statistically it wasn't really his fault because the odds were against him. I find this really offensive out of all her justifications, I don't know why!

TealLove Sun 17-Apr-16 08:58:50

I had some v low level abuse from a family member. But affected my life none the less.
I told my mum about 4 years ago and she didn't really process it. She talks about him all the time in a positive light. She said he's X dad and he had a terrible start in life.
She has s picture of him at her house.
I truly have no idea why she won't see it from my perspective. But she's old now and I say nothing.

Snoringlittlemonkey Sun 17-Apr-16 09:02:06

Victim blaming is rife and abusers tend to be very credible in their explanations. People want to believe them rather than face up to the fact that someone they love and raised could turn out to be a paedophile.

In the course of my work I had to visit someone who was convicted of rape and was housed in a sex offenders unit. He was in a cell with a convicted paedophile and was telling us the story of how this man was wrongly convicted and was totally innocent. The line that I'll never forget was 'if the kids had been in school as they were supposed be it would never have happened'. I felt hot and physically sick listening to it and couldn't wait to get out of there. People fit facts to suit themselves and rationalise what they have done.

I think that families who sweep it under the carpet have created an environment where abuse can flourish and are therefore to a certain extent enablers. This is why I'm a strong believer in cutting ties in such situations because you could never 100% trust them knowing they were not putting the welfare of the child first.

ShebaShimmyShake Sun 17-Apr-16 09:09:34

Because people don't like to think that someone they know and care about is an abuser. They prefer to think of abusers as one dimensional pantomime villains with no contradictions or complexity. They are in powerful denial and don't want you forcing them to confront the reality. Same goes for rapists. And then they wonder why victims rarely speak up.

SoThatHappened Sun 17-Apr-16 09:29:22

Ive found that the family of the abuser minimise what they did because they still love them.....oh come on it wasnt that bad, is the attitude.

My sibling made my life utter hell through the teenage years and I would call it abuse the things they did. It was very very brutal intimidation and bullying. It was late teens too.

They still do it now, belittle me and say abusive things but then expect me to keep a happy face for family events.

Some words I have learned and now use all the time are "Yes I can and yes I will."

Whenever I say I am not being involved in this or that family event...I get handwringing from parents, "You CANT DO THAT!"....Yes I can and yes I will do exactly that."

LAst time there was a family event, my sibling saw me approach and was seperate from the rest of the group, the tunred around and sneered at me with a cats bum face and made a snide and vicious comment so I could hear but no one else could. I turned on my heel and walked away without a single word and went off by myself and had a nice day by myself.

I got texts from them throughout the day...please come back. I ignored them all and I dont give a shit if it makes me look bad as I know the truth and I dont care.

TheOptimisticPessimist Sun 17-Apr-16 09:47:06

I should also add - she is very vocal about what a bad start my foster brother had, how he was abused himself and that therefore statistically it wasn't really his fault because the odds were against him. I find this really offensive out of all her justifications, I don't know why!

twirly could it be because by justifying his behaviour based on his history of being abused, she's also (by extension of her logic) suggesting that there's a likelihood that you will also now go on to become an abuser based on your own history?

I'm so sorry to those that have been abused and not given the support they need from the people around them. I can't even begin to imagine the betrayal you must feel. thanks

There are far too many stories like this on mumsnet, but I'm glad people feel able to come here and share their stories so people can understand just how damaging it is to sweep it under the carpet and gaslight the person that was abused into thinking they're making it into a bigger problem that it 'really' is.

TheOptimisticPessimist Sun 17-Apr-16 09:47:44


Ciggaretteandsmirnoff Sun 17-Apr-16 09:54:32

twirly that's awful flowers

I watched agog a JK program where a young girl of eight was raped by her step brother and she went of the rails a bit. Her step brother was sent to jail. Her bio mum and step dad still went to visit him and had him calling the family home and even asked her to talk to him on the phone. She left home at 15 and he moved back in.

The accused her of being dramatic too sad

So sad

twirlypoo Sun 17-Apr-16 10:06:55

Ciggarette I can count on 1 hand the number of times I have watched JK, but I saw that episode and had a full blown panic attack. My mum was there and I just kept saying - that is me, that's how I feel, that's it.i had just had DS (think he was a few months old) and she was trying to take him off me as I was so upset, it was horrific as there was no way I was letting her take him and I think that frightened her too. It's the only time I have come close to making her see what effect she has had on me. She couldn't see it in us as she was too close to the situation, but she could see it in that episode. I really wish I could find it again.

And yes optimistic, I think I find it so offensive because it casts suspicion on me whilst removing all blame from my foster brother. I don't know! It's confusing!

BoneyBackJefferson Sun 17-Apr-16 10:35:27

My situation is very much the same as SoThatHappened with the golden child/scapegoat.

I no longer have anything to do with the sections of the family that back up the belittling and snide comments.

When I went NC, they turned on another member of the family, this is now the constant, abuse till they break or leave, then go on to someone else.

aLeafFalls Sun 17-Apr-16 10:41:24

I've posted my experience on MN before several times, so I won't post the whole thing again. But briefly, after nearly 15 years of marriage I discovered my now exh had a long history of sexually abusing very, very young girls. The most serious form of abuse. He was also very violent to them.
His whole family knew. No legal action had ever been taken against him. One of his victims told me and then the whole story came out. I had two young daughters at the time.
I left him. I received no support from anyone except one of his now adult victims. His family and mine turned against me. I was threatened with a shotgun by one of his friends.
It was a terrible ordeal, went on for years and all I wanted to do was protect my children. The prevailing view seemed to be that I should keep quiet and contain him. Me and my daughters were of no real importance.
To be fair my police force were good, I had a police alarm in my house for over a year.
But what was really shocking was the average person's opinion. I was the villain, for taking action.

SoThatHappened Sun 17-Apr-16 10:45:03

I am most definitely the Scapegoat my sibling got away with and continues to get clean away with things I would never ever get away with in a million years.

I am leaving both of them too it. I wonder how long it will be before they get sick of and turn on each other.

SoThatHappened Sun 17-Apr-16 10:51:45

*to it

RiceCrispieTreats Sun 17-Apr-16 11:54:02

Cowardice, OP.
Some people just can't cope with doing what's right, and so they go with doing what's easy.

Nigellatheflower Sun 17-Apr-16 12:35:42

My in-laws were faced with a recent revelation of abuse that happened over 30 years ago to 2 of their children. They told the abuser that they, and all their direct family, would never have anything to do with there abuser ever again.

(Sadly, another member of the family knew about the abuse at the time, but because the abuser was their "golden child' said nothing about it).

I applaud them for being strong and brave enough to say it.

FrancesNiadova Sun 17-Apr-16 13:11:25

I think that the golden child syndrome makes that individual grow up believing that their behaviour is acceptable & that their actions are somehow above the law.
I think that the favourite-having parent(s) create this attitude, then enable the behaviour by gaslighting & victim-blaming. Even when the behaviour reaches the most awful levels, the parent(s) continue to enable & discredit anyone who tells a different story, because it shows their weakness & part in creating the offending person.
Even when all the evidence is heard & a conviction happens, it is easier to blame anyone else than look at themselves & what they've helped to create.
Stay well away from them Cookie you deserve better. flowers

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