Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Was this sexual abuse or an abusive relationship?(12 Posts)
I don't knwo which side of the fence this site and so I'm really hoping you might give your opinions.
When I was 13 a boy at school (15) asked me out. I said yes. From then, till I was almost 17 he pressured and manipulated me. Never violent always very sexual. My only purpose to him was sexual gratification. It was made to feel it was my duty. That's what girlfriends did. He would take my hand and make me rub him regardless of where we were or who was around. At school, in the playground, at friends houses. He would always be shoving his hands into my underwear too. So brazenly the a few teachers even noticed...guess who got told off. Me, 'Have some self respect!' I was told.
He took me to a gym clinic and make me have an injection. I didn't really get what it was at the time, I worked out later it was a contraception. I was manipulated into sex and constantly made to feel that other people wanted to rape me. He wanted me scared of other people.
Sorry this is a bit long. My point is, was this an abusive relationship because I thought he loved me it was it child sexual abuse because I was so young. For a long time I thought the distinction didn't matter but it does. For my own recovery it makes a difference. What would a lawyer class it as?
As a backdrop I was extremely naive. I ddint know what an orgasm was till I was 14, and even then only the male one. My mother never told me about sex and certainly not about consent. It was my first experience with boys being in the same school. I had a very sheltered life till then.
I’m so sorry you had to go through this. If it answers you question, my belief is that it would be classed as an abusive relationship. Sexual abuse generally is considered to be of a child by someone in a position of authority over them - due to age, family relationships, professional standing, or similar. Though manipulative and controlling, it sounds like he was a peer (another teenager roughly your age). It would be looked on differently if you weren’t in the same sort of peer group (age wise I mean), like if you were 8 and he was 15. But I don’t think that means by definition it must necessarily be any less traumatising. Trauma is very personal. I’m sorry you’re going through all of this.
It was both. The relationship was controlled by him and undoubtedly was full of sexual abuse. Additionally he has undoubtedly committed sexual offences against you. What do you feel you need to do now?
I suppose I feel that if it was an abusive relationship then I have some responsibility for my behaviour in it. I guess I was hoping to hear that I was a child, one that simply didn't understand what was happening. I realise the age gap wasn't huge but I think the mental one was.
When I read up about abusive relationships they are about adults, who have a full understanding of the world and a certain amount of autonomy that I don't think I had at 13. Equally ally he suggested methods of healing relate to adults views of the world. For a long time I wanted to see it as a bad relationship because somehow that made it less scary, less of a violation. I felt more in control of I thought that I had some of the responsibility.
On the other hand most stuff about childhood abuse is about much younger children. So although it sounds very familiar (e.g. the impact it has on self image) I feel like I'm being dramatic and seeing things far worse than they were.
If I was a childwith regards to every other aspect (legally had to go to school,couldn't vote, drive or have a ft job etc) why was I not a child when I comes to sexual acts happening to me?
Would we still use the word relationship if I was 11? I guess that's what it boils down to. I don't look back and think of it as my first relationship. I don't consider him my ex. At the time I thought that way but not now. But he is the person who abused me.
But as pp's have shown, people will see it diffrently. That makes me scared to talk to people about it.
Oh I don't know, I'm a mess. I look at 13/14 year olds and I am schocked that I was that small when he guilted me into drinking alcohol. But if other people don't agree then maybe I am making more of it than it was.
I agree that either would be traumatizing but you can't argue that the impacts of each would be profoundly different. And so the support and healing would be differ too.
Fuck I'm so confused now.
Have you ever talked this over with somebody? You did nothing wrong, and what happened was not your fault in any way. I think it would be helpful if you could express how you feel about what happened. Could you possibly speak to your gp?
You are NOT making something out of nothing, what happened to
you was abusive, 100%. You are allowed to feel however you do, your feelings are real and justified.
I think you've answered your own question. I look at 13/14 year olds and I am schocked that I was that small when he guilted me into drinking alcohol
You really were that young. Someone that young can't be held responsible.
Oh my lovely, just because someone is in a relationship with someone doesn't mean they have any responsibility for the abuse. In this case it was an abusive relationship within which you were a victim of child sexual abuse. You are in no way responsible. Being similar ages or anything else doesn't make it your responsibility or your fault. Acknowledging it as an abusive relationship simply says that it was more than incidents of sexual abuse - there were other factors (emotional abuse, manipulation and so on) but the main issue here is the sexual abuse. adults who've been in abusive relationships and who've been in a living hell are not to blame either.
Have you had any counselling? I was abused as a child and had lots of counselling when I was younger. It was a big help to me. Unfortunately I was assaulted by several men when I was 20/21, and I haven't really addressed that until recently, 15 years on.
Whatever label you choose to give what happened to you, it was not your fault.
Yes my use of the word relationship was in terms of you and him being connected, not in the terms of a 'relationship' boyfriend/girlfriend stylee.
Thank you all. You have helped me to think this through in a way I hadn't before. I am in therapy and she so good but it isn't a two way thing. I talk at her, very occasionally she asks a question. I'd really like a bit more back from her. I will mention it.
I never meant that adults in abusive relationships are ever at fault. In my mind, fault or blame are not the same as responsibly. I mean it more in terms of capability of choice and comprehending the situation they are in.
Tammy sorry to hear you went through that and thank you for sharing. You really helped.
I don’t think you did make a choice, you were coerced. You did not deserve what happened to you, and I hope you find a way through to feeling ok about yourself and what happened.
Join the discussion
Please login first.