The story of a woman waiting for her sociopath father to die so she can dance on his grave, and having a rich fulfilling life in the meanwhile.
I realize that reading a blog sometimes gets a bit disorienting, since facts referred to can be from earlier posts. Here’s an overview.
I survived sexual abuse from my father, beginning when I was about 5 years old and lasting till I was about 14, when a growing awareness that I might tell forced my father to move on, to whom I don’t know.
I was raped and strangled into unconsciousness, the first time at least. My mother did nothing to help me. She comes across as a perfectly nice woman in normal terms, but she was a dependent person and unwilling to be my saviour. She has always claimedshe knew nothing, which I’ve come to realize is impossible given the injuries I suffered. My best guess is that she knew about the first rape, but thought she’d put a stop to it by making my father agree to stop drinking hard liquor (oh, honey I was so drunk I didn’t know what I was doing…), so when she said she didn’t know, what she didn’t know was that he’d continued.
For many years, all I had were memories of the attacks and the aftermath to prove to myself that it had all actually happened. More recently I have physical evidence, as a vaginal exam shows healed tearing and vascular damage that I suffered when I was raped as young child and left to heal without medical attention. The evidence was there all along, I just had to get the courage to ask the person doing the exam if there was any tearing. I haven’t given birth, and there’s no other way for the tearing to be there.
My father was reported to the police over 20 years ago. They investigated and found enough evidence to charge him. I decided not to press charges because I felt that the price to me to obtain what tiny justice is meted out to abusers (3 year sentences, after 3 years of gruelling trial for example) was too high. I have two brothers but am not sure if iether of them was abused directly, although both are of course affected by living in a home where abuse was present, whether they knew or not.
My family believes me, and my mother finally left my father about 5 years ago, which was about 14 years too late in my estimation.
I am a woman in her 40’s, happily and legally married to another woman, as is blessedly possible in my country and should be everywhere else. I am smart, capable and successful in my job. I don’ t have kids and probably won’t. I have been healing for 20 years, and I want to tell those of you new to healing the abuse that every minute has been worth it. Every minute I am better, stronger and more free, not just of the effects of the abuse, but of our cultures stupid and harmful values around children, parents and women, and more the woman the Goddess intends me to be.
I spend most of my time living my life now, rather than surviving it. Some things you don’t fully ‘get over’ and child sexual abuse is one of them. The battles I have fought in my life have made me a strong and powerful woman. People who think that one should forgive and forget are idiots. That would be a waste of hard won lessons and learnings, and would make what happened more meaningless to us than it already is.
I am still affected by post traumatic stress at times but in ways that are familiar to me and possible to manage. I have had a lot of very useful therapy and was a therapist myself for a time. My Pagan faith and the support of the Goddesses, particularly Mother Earth, has been critical in my healing, as I know higher powers of various sorts have been to other survivors.
I am of varied cultural background, including Scottish, and am a religious Pagan of the feminist variety. I draw my strength from Mother Earth, who is a Goddess to me, and the principal one I’m connected to. From my Scottish heritage and Pagan spiritual beliefs, I have drawn on the practice of dancing a sword dance at the death of an enemy (see comments below for more info on this history).
Since I will likely not be present at the death of my abuser, I plan to do this sword dance at his grave site. I am doing it to banish him from my life, to ritually deny him the ancestor worship practised in my faith, and to celebrate my victory over him in outliving him. I am also celebrating my power and achievement in healing from what he did. Like the hero of a fairy tale, I have struck out on my own away from my abusive family, had adventures, undertaken sacred heroic tasks, gone into the monster’s lair and symbolically stolen the golden harp or silver sword that is the reward for bravery and perseverence. It is only fitting I honour a hero’s journey with a heros dance of exhaltation.
I am also dancing to demonstrate the proper attitude to have toward child abusers and survivors, and the proper way to support survivors, by celebrating our courage, not with pity or condescension. We are all warriors and may we all live to dance on their graves. Since I began telling people I plan to do this dance, I’ve gotten a lot of support, and several people, including some relatives, have told me they are available to witness the dance.
Oh, probably the most important thing about this blog is that my father/abuser is on his third recurrence of cancer. I’m hoping he’ll die soon, but he seems to be unbelievably hardy. This is his third bout that I know of and he’s about 70, so I hope it will finish him off soon. However, if it’s really painful and debilitating, and gives him some good long quality time with the realities of how he’s lived his life, I’m fine with it taking awhile. Goddess willing, he’ll hopefully die around the time I relearn how to dance the sword dance properly and I feel ready to deal with the death of my mortal enemy.
This blog is for me to tell the whole truth, anonymously, about what’s going on within me, something I’m not able to do in my regular life that often. It’s for me to break silence about incest and the injustice imposed by the cultural restrictions on talking about it. We need to start talking more about the realities of being an incest survivor. We don’t deserve for our pain and courage to be hidden shamefully away – that just adds insult to injury. Incest survivors are some of the bravest people I know.
And I’m one of them.
It means a lot to me that others are reading what I write. Thank you for stopping by.