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*Trigger warning* Abuse. It was my high school reunion last night...[concerns abuse, could be triggering]

(15 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

AristotlesTrousers Sun 02-Oct-16 06:04:07

So, it was my high school reunion yesterday...

I couldn't go. I simply couldn't go. Luckily, I had a good excuse in that I've just started a Masters course and I had some stuff to sort out.

Probably a good job I didn't go, because I now I keep seeing pictures of my high school abuser plastered all over my Facebook.

I blocked his profile a while ago because I was fed up off seeing his smug face on my timeline (damn you, 'People you may know'), and seeing him being a twat on mutual friends' timelines.

Spent last evening avoiding Fb, because every time I logged on I saw a photo with his smug face on, and I had to fight the urge to start posting memes about karma (I never do this sort of thing), or articles/links to petitions about bullying and sexual assault.

I'll never get over how he lured me into sex games and then made himself out to be a victim of me because he was worried I might spill the beans.

My last year of high school was ruined because of him, and his friends who believed his lies.

I can't even report him to the police because it was more coercion than anything else. Besides, I can't be sure he wasn't so arrogant and entitled that he really believed I was giving enthusiastic consent (but, hey, when you're under a stairwell in a multi-storey car park and the person you're with threatens that he'll 'tell everybody what you're like' and 'nobody would believe you anyway', then it's easier to just comply).

He presented as a nice guy, and I'm pretty certain he'll have turned on the charm last night and everybody will think he's marvellous.

Well, he's not marvellous. He was a manipulative, conniving shit, and I hope one day karma will catch up with him (although from reading the karma thread from the other day, I'm not so sure).

I can't ever go to a school reunion again - I can't take the risk that he'll be there. Just knowing he was there makes me feel like he's stolen those years from me all over again.

Apologies, that was long. I just needed to get that off my chest.

I'll be grand in a day or two, but please tell me I am not alone in finding high school reunions so triggering.

AristotlesTrousers Sun 02-Oct-16 06:08:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

2016betterbebetter Sun 02-Oct-16 06:11:17

Never been to mine either. Too many of my old bullies likely to be there.

WhatamessIgotinto Sun 02-Oct-16 06:17:30

That's awful OP, he sounds like a really nasty piece of work. sadflowers

leopardchanges Sun 02-Oct-16 06:17:46

That's awful OP. My school class hasn't done a reunion because the majority of them all live near each other and are in contact regularly anyway!

I had different experiences to you at that point at school (not great either, but not as bad as yours) but my gap year was ridiculous. There's no way in hell I'd go to a reunion of the people I was around then.

So the likely goo that you're alone in this is pretty close to zero.

So sorry you experienced those things though OP. He was wrong. I think you know that, but the injustice is biting.

AndI think the issue of coercion with older teenage/young 20s girls/women is massively overlooked.

leopardchanges Sun 02-Oct-16 06:18:29

*likelihood! Not likely goo!!

luckylucky24 Sun 02-Oct-16 06:29:43


My class tried to do a reunion but failed to organise it unsurprisingly.
If it had I would have gone to see if karma was working it's magic.

AristotlesTrousers Sun 02-Oct-16 08:06:56

Sounds like I'm not alone in feeling this way.

So sorry you experienced those things though OP. He was wrong. I think you know that, but the injustice is biting.

I think that's the thing, leopardchanges. It doesn't seem to matter how much I tell myself that he has to live with his actions. I think it's because I have no way now of clearing my name to the other people I went to school with - he did such a good job of ruining my reputation.

AndI think the issue of coercion with older teenage/young 20s girls/women is massively overlooked.

This also. ^^ There's often no way of proving it occurred and it doesn't always fit in with current definitions of sexual assault.

It's so easy to look back and know what I should have done with the benefit of hindsight. It's too late now, although there were many reasons at the time I couldn't deal with it properly.

On the other hand, I think the experience has shaped my life in positive ways that I'd never have thought of in terms of resilience and some of the choices I've made. Not that it's any excuse, but I have to try and think in those terms.

I'd still like to see him get his comeuppance though!

AristotlesTrousers Sun 02-Oct-16 19:15:15

All in all I've had a pretty shitty weekend, and even though I know I'll feel better in a few days, I'm allowing myself tonight to feel sad. All change tomorrow though!

However, is is a pattern that keeps repeating itself. Everything is great for a while, then something like the school reunion will trigger me, or a news item about Ched Evans or Adam Johnson or similar, or just a bad day, and I am consumed with resentment about what happened.

I went to speak to somebody at my local SARC about this recently, and am getting something called an ISVA who will be able to advise me about what I can do, e.g. accessing counselling etc. I think this is a big step for me, but I'm still concerned with how I actually manage these feelings of resentment when they do bubble up. If anybody has any advice they can give me about what will happen with the ISVA, I'd love to hear it.

I didn't really stay in touch with anybody at school, and I don't know why I have this strange need to try to forge links with that time in my life. I think it's maybe to try to salvage something good from those years - which is why I'd love to be able to attend reunions etc. But I am terrified that people at school remember me as some kind of unstable bunny boiler who lied about a sexual encounter with a boy (which is what he'd have had them believe).

The reality is that they probably don't even remember me at all - but I'll never know that.

I have this fantasy that they do all remember me for those exact reasons, but that somehow they discover the truth and they then cut my abuser out of their lives, and denying him the time in his life that he continues to deny me.

This was all so long ago. I should be over it by now, but like I say, everything will be going swimmingly, and then bang, something happens that brings it all flooding back. Does anybody else feel like this ever?

IonaMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 02-Oct-16 20:27:54

Hi folks! We're going to move this thread over to Relationships in a moment at the OP's request.

1DAD2KIDS Mon 03-Oct-16 00:26:57

It is very sad that there are people in this world like him.

The trouble is the issue of coercion by perpetrators of any sex towards any sex is very hard to prove due to the burden of proof. Coercion is very subtle form of force and hard to pin point even with recorded text/conversation due the OP still on face value consenting. Because of the lack of concrete provable evidence it is also hard to collate any reliable figures on the true scale of the problem. All factors that contribute to it being overlooked.

I hope you find a way with time to feel better. Unfortunately I have no fast forward button to get you there now. With any trauma in life it can affect up deep down and have repercussions on our every day life. Even when wounds heal they leave scares. Personally I think opening up and talking is a massive tool to moving forward. It's what I have used to deal with my demons and no doubt the same for so many on here. These things sadly happen and all we can do is our very best to live life the best we can. What else can we do? Wish you the very best in moving forward, repairing and finding that inner peace.

WomanWithAltitude Mon 03-Oct-16 00:51:46

flowers You're not alone, and you are strong to have come through what you did.

I've been supported by an ISVA before (during my rapist's trial) and she was amazing. They will tailor what they do to your needs, and are a tower of strength when you're finding it hard to cope (ime). Hopefully your ISVA will be able to work with you and help you get the support you need to move forwards.

I know the injustice of it all is one of the hardest things to cope with, but you need to focus on your own happiness and nother your abuser. Easier said than done, I know. flowers

WomanWithAltitude Mon 03-Oct-16 00:52:48

^ not, not nother

AristotlesTrousers Mon 03-Oct-16 19:59:54

Thank you for your kind words, 1DAD2KIDS and WomanWithAltitude.

Having a shit day due to other things today, and wasn't even able to take the call from the ISVA when she phoned. It's good to know you found yours helpful, WomanWithAltitude. I feel like a bit of a fraud having one, like I'm wasting the resources for other people who have suffered far worse sexual assaults.

For some reason lately, I keep getting flashbacks to the time he made me give him a blow job as 'compensation' for the fact that he found out my best friend's boyfriend had offered to beat him up - on that occasion I remember going dizzy and freezing. What's harder though is the psychological stuff afterwards, when he used my emotional state to make out I was crazy. Of course everybody took his side and praised him for not giving into emotional blackmail when I started self-harming afterwards (teachers included).

I do wonder whether it even occurred to him to wonder what would have happened if I'd also gone to the reunion. He was clearly either confident I wouldn't call him out on his behaviour.. or hoped I'd be too scared to go... I'd love to know what goes on the minds of these sorts of men.

Apologies for the rambling. I'm just finding it helpful writing it all down. Sometimes I feel so alone with it though, and it'd be good to find others who have been through anything similar.

1DAD2KIDS Mon 03-Oct-16 20:44:43

Its not rambling if its helping. Sometimes simply expressing our thoughts and feelings externally can work wonders like a weight off your chest. Use everything that helps and makes you feel better. Sometimes in life you need to concentrate on what you need.

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