Past child abuse comes to bit me in the butt
Here I am 63 years old, out of the cult going on 8 years, went through a year of therapy back in 2007, been working very hard to become the person I have always wanted to be. But what happen to me a few days ago just blew me out of the water for the past two days. I am now finally coming to grips with my emotions and understanding what caused me such distress.
Here's what happen. We was having a congregation forum where everyone can share how we can better serve the congregation in being more inviting. A member raised her hand and started to verbally attack me about how I feel about Christian religion and how Christians are those who teach love and should not be criticized for their actions. After she was done I looked at her and apologize for hurting her feelings. This just made her more furious at me. Again I try to explain how negative my background was and I am working hard on this problem. She said she wants nothing to do with me and she feels like she is being persecuted for being a Christian. Other members chime in and defended my position. My wonderful wife spoke out in my behalf and I think at that point this lady pop a cork. The forum ended shortly after and I went up to her and sincerely apologize to her again and said I wish she had come to me and talk about how she felt. She said you expect me . to come up to a big person like you and talk. Then she turned away from me.
A friend of mine called her later that day and talk to her. My friend brought out she is furious with everyone in our congregation for not coming to her defense. Also she told my friend that my past Abuse's as a child I most likely made it worse than it was and my case was likely a very isolated case and not that bad. She felt I have been overstating the abuse that is taking place in the Wt. and there are probably no abuse taking place at all.
She was minimizing what I have gone through and minimizing what all others have gone through in this corrupt organization. You might as will have stick a knife in my heart. I was devastated and feeling totally worthless. I could not understand why I was feeling so bad! After all I thought I have worked through all this. But another dear friend called and talk to me about what happen. After expressing how I felt she said something that open my mind to why I feel that way. By saying how she understands how someone who is publicly put down like I was would be hurt. Suddenly a light came on in my brain. I guess I never dealt with this abuse before. My first 4 years in school my teachers would on a daily basis make fun of me in front of the whole class on how horrible I was for not saluting the flag. One even would even try to force me to put my hand over my heart.
I now understand how those old feelings have surfaced to make me feel bad. I told my wife maybe I should write a letter to this women and thank her for helping me to understand my deep buried feelings caused by her. I went through sexual, violent attack by my abuser, verbal and spiritual abuse. And it was the verbal abuse that came back to bit me in the butt this last weekend. For all who are survivor's of abuse my heart goes out to all of you. From one who is also a survivor and working hard to be a better person. Take care and have peaceful thoughts. Still Totally ADD
I am sorry you are still dealing with the repercussions of this abuse, but glad you are getting it all up and out. Sounds like this person has issues of their own, because her reaction seems crazy.
I hope you continue to heal.
Wow Still Totally ADD what a tough experience to go through - I so admire your composure under such a lot of provocation. I hate that the woman minimized what you went through as a child. How dare she!
Thank you for starting an OP on this worthy topic.
Was the congregation forum among JWs or some other group?
Thank you LisaRose for your kind comments.
Steve2 thank you also. No it was not a JWs group. I belong to a Unitarian Universalist congregation. I enjoy the friendships I have with this group. Most there come out of other religions that they did not agree with. Most do not believe in God or have a belief in God or something spiritual but does not like organize religion. I fit in like a glove. They have given us a lot of support in coming out of a cult. No crosses, any religious emblems or praying. Every UU congregation is different some very Christian all the way to atheist and everything in between. Still Totally ADD
Thank you so much for sharing. Please remember that you are doing your best, and no matter what, there will be some people who will feel hurt regardless of your best efforts. It's not always something that you can do better about. Please keep that in mind. I say that because I find it unreasonable that the woman in your story just couldn't accept your apology, didn't let it go, and now is upset with the entire congregation for not taking her side. That is extremely unreasonable of her, regardless of how "bad" you think you said or did whatever was that she was complaining about.
It reminds me of the movie "IT". All the adults know something is wrong but refuse to acknowledge it. Then us victims get shunned, and the abusers are still accepted. I was playing video games online with my cousin and some of his friends and his friends. When they found out I was his cousin they started making jokes about witness. I know they where joking but I felt bad for my cousin having to deal with it.
@Still Totally ADD
As you must know people sometimes lash out unreasonably when driven by their own pain and I think it would have been better for her to accept your sincere apologies. I hope she can deal with her issues, and that you can find the strength not to have this undo your hard work.
When I went to school it was in an area where Jehovah's Witnesses were not accepted. I was literally alone through primary and high school. I was called 'that jehoova'. There was physical abuse from the other kids and I was even thrown in the school pond with all my stuff in front of everyone. At home there was molestation. The teachers never did anything because I kept quiet and 'trusted in Jehovah' my young mind already corrupted by the filth.
This is why today 20 years later the scars still run deep and I struggle to have any meaningful social life. People don't realize the impact abuse can have on a mind, especially a young mind that is trying to make sense of the world and trying to fit in. Even today I find myself pushing people that care away, and then being depressed and lonely.
I wish these things on nobody, and all I can say to you is stay strong, we the survivors share this burden, and by sharing we can find strength and peace!
All the best.
Whenever someone reacts that way with me i just say "f*"k 'em". She has the problem, not you.
1010 I appreciate the encouragement. Her anger really surprise me because just minutes earlier we was talking and laughing with each other. I think she thought by attacking me this way I would fight back instead I apologize. All she could do was get even more angery.
JayK how right you are. The abusers keep going on and the abuse are left in shambles.
Confusedalot so sorry you had to go through so much hurt. You to stay strong and keep finding the strength you need so you can have peace in your life. Let's all make the scar's of our pass abuse's a point we can look back that makes us stronger. Thank you for your experience.
Side not to the rest of the story. She had her name taken off our membership. I do hope she can find some peace in her life. Still Totally ADD
the behaviour there is typical 'gas lighting' and it almost hurts as much as the actual abuse. part of the gas lighting technique involes minimising events, telling you, "thats not what happened" or "you are exaggerating " "you are remembering wrong"
all of these type of attack hurts very deeply. it boggles the mind that anyone would attack the abused and not the abuser. :(