Words of thanks

To those who are there for me

When I’m alone and sad

When I don’t have the words

Or when I hide my face 
To those who care

When the pain is so bad, I can’t bear

When I’m not myself

You don’t stare 
To those who know

When I’m down and on the edge

You’re there 

With a hug or two
From me to you

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart

However broken, I am

You see beyond my pain

Acceptance

For years as a male survivor I have struggled with acceptance. Self acceptance, acceptance of my situation and acceptance from others.

Taking self acceptance first. My biggest issue of the last few years has been accepting myself for the person I am. I have struggled with the thought that I’m worth it. Obviously, I now see that I am but because of the condition in the abuse left me with. I couldn’t see the positives that I have. The biggest realisation has been that I now can accept my strengths and weaknesses, they are all part of me. I feel more comfortable in my own skin now, I’m happier than I’ve ever been.

Acceptance of my situation, here is a really issue for me. The feelings I had at the time of the abuse were those of fear, shame, anger, a feeling of self loathing and uselessness. I was only a teenager, vulnerable and frightened. The problem comes 30 years later when I’m still living in that moment. My journey to this point has been a roller coaster ride of ups and downs. Now I see that he was a weak shameful man who couldn’t keep his hands to him self. He tried to ruin my life but I’ve survived. I know that I’ve missed opportunities but I can see the doors that have been opened. Joining the theatre group was something that I never ever dreamed of #livving the dream.

Acceptance from others, a real big one. So, how do I describe this. Well, I have trouble receiving acceptance. Maybe it’s because of all the stuff going on in my head. All the self doubt. Now I’m having to relearn how to accept praise and love. I feel I’ve made progress over the last few months. I am so proud of the progress I’ve made. 

Time for a change

My posts have mainly been introspective and focusing on my own issues. After over 900 posts, I feel I need to change the feel of the blog. 

I started this blog as a way of being an advocate for others survivors. I will still be writing about my progress but more positive and inspiring posts. 

So here’s to the next stage of my recovery. 

Taking control

I realise that in some ways I’ve been so lucky. Ok, what happened to was bad but it could be worse. I know of people who had it far worse that me. I now understand that I can be a force for good. 

The biggest thing for me was to be able, to take back control of my life. This hasn’t been easy, in fact it has been close to hell at times. I’ve been so lucky to have great people around me since this started. Whether it was community people or family or work. I have to say that the biggest help has been AmDram. Something I thought about taking a break from earlier this year. I’m glad I didn’t, because I feel so at home. 

Taking control of my healing has been the one biggest plus, because I can now start living. 

Less painful memories

Even though I’ve not had therapy for two weeks, I can start to see some progress. Some of the memories don’t seem so painful and some of the better memories are coming through. As time moves on I feel that I did have some good times and those memories are starting to come to the fore.

I once thought that I could never remember the good times. But the last few weeks have had a positive effect on my life. I realise that sometimes you just have to go with the flow and relax more. I find that I can control my feelings more and my sleeping patterns are more normal. 

Yes, I still struggle with negative feeling and memories. It is part and parcel of being a survivor of abuse. On the whole I feel I’m making progress and can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. I know that I still have to face more challenges ahead. 

Recharged

Well now I’ve been back at work for a few days. So, time to reflect on my week off. I realised that is was close to burning out. My sleep patten was erratic, my mood was up and down and I just felt like I could run and hide.

It’s been a rare thing for me to just stop. The time off gave me a chance recharge my batteries and just stop. Looking back I feel that maybe I’ve started on the next phase of my journey. Taking time to pause and reflect gave me a chance to be thankful for all the wonderful people in my life. Those who have seen me grow and start to blossom. Those who have seen a different side of me and those who have stood by me. Too numerous to mention.

So, I feel that being able to sit through a painful episode has been possible because I’ve been able to just stop. 

Six years since this started this journey

In April 2010 two conversations about the former Pope’s visit to the UK, seeded something in my brain. At this time I changed. I started to change, I became stressed and I was sharp with members of the team. At the time I was with a missionary community and on mission in Northwich.

The last few days if that mission were stressful to say the least. The week after was hard, I had a choice to make. I was scheduled to go on a secondary school mission. The first two days of that week I spent in a hotel, thinking and just being me.

I did go on the school mission, it was hard. 

This set the scene for the next five months, I wasn’t sure what was going on. Little did I know what I was going to face. Six years on I almost forgot the dates of that mission. 

I see that a progress. 

What I want for the future.

In October 2010, I had a dream to be a voice for survivors of sexual abuse. This blog was meant to be a start. I had a dream to start a charity, this was to help all who have been affected and their families.

Well five and a half years on I feel that I’ve failed, because this is still only a dream. One of the ideas I have had was to start a support group, again this hasn’t happened yet. I know that this is an attainable goal.

Now I’m in therapy and making progress, it seems that this is a real possibility in the next few years. I have a passion to help others and be the voice I wanted to be all those years ago.

The future is mine for the taking.