My daughter was abused 30 years agoPosted on 06/26/12, 03:56 pm
Reply #1 06/27/12 10:02am
Ladybuckeye, I'm so sorry for all you've gone through. I don't have your same situation, but I just wanted to reach out to you. All of us here have felt and maybe still do feel guilty for what happened to these poor kids, but please know that it is not your fault. The offenders are very cunning, manipulative, deceitful people who are able to get access to the kids without anyone else knowing a thing, and then they are able to get their victims to keep it a secret. I know it's hard not to take on blame and guilt for this, but it is really believing a lie. The accountability is solely with the offender. Keeping blame and guilt in your heart is allowing the offender to continue to have some power and control in the situation. I hope you can have that kind of conversation with your daughter, she doesn't seem to understand that aspect of this issue from what you've written. It's been so long, I hope and pray this could be a time when the two of you try to focus on healing. I wonder if you guys have gone to counseling, either separately or together? It can be so helpful.
It seems like she may not have had accurate memories of what happened--who the actual offender was, which is not uncommon in those who block things out for a long time, or in those who also love their offender and want to shift the reality somehow so they can deal with their life, especially when they are younger when the abuse happens and are just too immature to know how to handle it. There's the possibility she had more than one offender. But the bottom line is that you did the right things when she first told you. You believed her and made decisions to protect her. Maybe she's not remembering some things accurately about all you did for her, just like she seems to not have remembered accurately about who abused her.
My heart goes out to you, I hate that this type of abuse so often plays havoc in families in so many different ways. I'm glad you reached out to us here. There's a list of resource books and websites a ways back on the board that I'll bump up since there are several more new folks here too. Please take care and come here as much as you need for support or just to vent (((hugs)))
Reply #2 06/27/12 3:04pm
I have not been in your situation because my daughter who was abused is only 12. I could not imagine the strain it places on you. I will keep you in my prayers.
Reply #3 06/27/12 3:50pm
Thank you Bandmom5, yes, we have been to counseling, together when she was younger, and separately when she got older. It seems like I have been in counseling forever, but I still can't get over the guilt. In the past,my daughter says wants to try and have a relationship and I bend over backwards trying to please her, but the minute something happens that I can't do what she wants, she turns on my and tells me everything is my fault and says she thinks its best that we avoid each other. I have been on this emotional rollercoaster for a long time and I just can't do it anymore. I want to have a relationship with her, but she seems like it is always a game to her, if I can do something for her, she is happy, if I can't she screams at me in front of my grandchildren. Emotionally I can't deal with it. Like I said, if I could undo all of the past I would, or wish that it happened to me instead of her, but I can't. I know she is hurting and I feel so helpless to be able to help her. I guess the only way I feel like I am helping her is by doing everything she wants and by helping her out financially all I can. When I do that it seems to get a little better, but when I can't it seems like she hates me. It's such a horrible thing to know that your child hates you when you love her with all your heart. And recently, when I couldn't do something for my granddaughter, my granddaughter snapped at me that I never protected her mom. I was speechless and couldn't believe that I am hearing it from her now too. I am so grateful that I can vent on here and that you responded to me. I am at the end of my rope and don't know what to do now? It seems like no matter what I do, it will never get better :(
Reply #4 06/27/12 4:13pm
I hate to be so blunt, but it sounds like your daughter is using the abuse to manipulate you. It is NOT your fault and you know in your heart that you would have stopped it if you had known. Is she still in counseling? I'm praying that you BOTH can find peace and strength and healing through this. (((HUGS)))
Reply #5 06/27/12 4:23pm
I am a survivor and although I was very angry at my parents for not supporting me after I disclosed I don't think you deserve to be treated this way. Your daughter is an adult now and has the ability to heal if she chooses to.
She has turned into a bully and is taking it out on the wrong person. You have apologized and tried everything to help her. It is time for her to grow up and take responsibility for her own healing. She is teaching her children to just scream and cry and bully others for what they want.
I can't tell you what to do but I do think this behavior is not acceptable, maybe soon after the abuse but not years and years later. If she has been to therapy they have told her this.
My daughter recently disclosed and we had some terrible times with her, but now she has to take her healing seriously. As parents, there is only so much you can do. It sounds to me like you have and now her treating you badly has become a habit for her. This isn't healthy. What does your therapist tell you about this?
You can stop feeling guilty now. You didn't do this to her. You don't deserve to be treated this way. And yes, at this point it might be the best thing for you to stop seeing your daughter until she can treat you with the love and respect that you deserve. I hope your daughter will realize how lucky she is to have a mother who believed her and stood by her. And loved her at her worst. Please come back here for support, you my dear need it! Hugs, Laura
Reply #6 06/27/12 4:30pm
Thank you brokensun, No, my daughter is no longer in counseling at this time. When she was in counseling, all she would tell me is that her counselor told her to end her relationship with me. I don't know if that was really said or not, but I don't feel like that is fair to tell her something like that when I am not there to tell my side. I have tried so hard over the years and nothing seems to work. My present husband says the same thing as you, that she is manipulating me, but when you have carried guilt for so long, it is hard to accept that. I look at her now as a grown woman and still see that small child's face. I have determined that I will go to my grave never knowing the truth, but until that time comes, its so hard to try and fix a relationship when you are the only one trying. Thank you for the prayers, they are very much appreciated. I sincerely believe that prayer and God is what got me through all these years. HUGS
Reply #7 06/27/12 4:36pm
Thank you so much Laura. I am sorry for what you have been through and you will be in my prayers. You have given me a new perspective of looking at my situation.
Reply #8 06/28/12 12:59pm
My daughter just told me I think it happened somewhat recently 18 mos but actually I don't know what where when we live far apart only the last 3 years and even though we used to talk 3xs a day we don't speak anymore no mothers day card birthday etc. shes mid 20s taken up with a guy no education 5 kids she said she wont get any treatment and told me shes scared all the time. I told her we would pay for any treatment and she knows that 100% we would fly her any where we have always put her first. I don't have any power to help her the only time now that I reflect back on the last 18 mos I spoke to her was when I called her. She treats me the same as your daughter treats you! I asked was it her dad but she said no she also said it was a weapon I think so Im thinking aquaintance. We don't really have relatives. But my daughter blames me somehow she even said I should have told her about some type of abuse resources. I also go through every minute of every day reflecting on when it could have been what I could have done. I just miss her we were friends and also mother and daughter. I thank you for your post I have just recently entered the same prison
Reply #9 06/28/12 1:07pm
Dear pkin32904, I am so sorry that you are experiencing the same thing I am. I know how painful it is. It has been 30 years for me and I still relive it over and over and try to think of what I could have done to make it not happen. I think our daughters have to deal with this on their own, as hard as that is for us. I am so happy that you came here for support. I just joined and it is really helping me a lot to be able to vent and talk about this. Maybe we can help each other to get out of this self made prison. I am here anytime you need to talk and the people on here are wonderful. You are in my prayers.
Reply #10 06/28/12 1:08pm
I am so thankful I found this support group. I am feeling much better since I read all your letters to me. All this encouragement is just what I needed. I think for now my only choice to to avoid my daughter, as painful as that is to me. I can see now that she has been manipulating me and I don't know why I didn't see it before? I guess all the guilt I have overshadowed my thinking. I love my daughter very much, but I can't let her keep doing this to me. It has been going on for so long and I guess I truly thought I deserved to be punished for not protecting her. I pray every night that she can heal and go on with her life. I wish I could do something to help her, but I just don't know what to do. I am working toward trying to go on with my life without all the guilt. It is going to be a struggle, but I am going to try. After reading what you all wrote me, I did feel like a load has been lifted off of me. I have been sad for so many years, afraid to be to happy because I thought I didn't deserve it. It affected everything and everybody in my life. I just want to thank you all for welcoming me into this group and giving me a place where I finally feel I belong.
This group is for parents whose children have been sexually abused. We welcome both Mothers and Fathers. Here, we can offer support to one another. We can vent, cry and lift each other up. No condemning or criticizing allowed. We are here for support. We LOVE (((HUGS))) !