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Thread: Symptoms of sexual abuse but no memory???

  1. #1
    floridagirlal
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    Symptoms of sexual abuse but no memory???

    I am 39 and for 20 years now i have suspected that there was some form of sexual abuse in my past for several reasons.

    The largest of which being my sexual preferences. I am really into bdsm and controlling sex and frequent sex. I feel such a strong intense pull towards being submissive in a sexual situation that its almost overwhelming and i can not climax without feeling successfully submissive. However in all other aspects of life, i am a strong independent confident, successful, driven woman.

    Another prominent reason is my overtly sexual childhood. As a child (ages 4-5) i was incredibly drawn to sex and "dirty" things. I always tried to get my friends to do things i knew were "wrong" and i didnt understand why. I would spend the night with a neighbor and would make her "kiss" me with an open mouth. I don't think tongues were used at that point. I would crawl on top of her and make out with her. It makes me feel so disgusted to actually put this in writing.

    I know that I was touched inappropriately at least 3 times by 3 different men but, by the time those things happened, I had already been involved in the sexual acts with my friend. I remember my mother asking me frequently if anyone had ever touched me in the wrong places. I would always tell her no because I was afraid. It makes me wonder if she knew something because she was ALWAYS asking me. I also question why I was touched by so many people. Did I display some kind of sexual attitude as a toddler?? I hardly think so. I just don't know why it happened so often. But, as I said, the sexual behavior was already occurring by the time I actually have memories of these other incidents.

    The other strange thing that is brought to memory is that I would urinate in strange places. I got some kind of thrill out of going in my toy box and I did that frequently. What in the world???

    I have asked my girls (i have 3) if they have ever been touched inappropriately and they act like I'm crazy. I've also never seen any of the behavior that I exhibited.

    If I can't truly remember the abuse, is there even a way to address the possible abuse through therapy? Wouldn't a therapist think I was crazy if I came to his office and told him that I think I was abused but I don't remember?

  2. #2
    SapphireNoir10
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    No. A therapist would not think you were crazy.

    My friend went through a similar thing. She had vague/strong memories of past sexual abuse. When she started seeing a counsellor it came back to her more and more. It turned out her grandad had sexually abused her when she was about 5/6. She has never told anyone but me, and a couple of other friends. She refused to tell her parents or the police.

    I think you should go to a therapist. You've lived with this for so long, I think you could benefit from an experts help. You really ARE NOT alone out there.

  3. #3
    leo75
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    -hugs- I have wondered this same thing.. but then again my brother is kinda weird too.. but that is another matter.

    I have vague memories of abuse but nothing official. I do things I know that are wrong, accept responsibility for them, but can't say why I did them. I learn from mistakes and don't repeat the bad ones, so I know that I have a conscience and that I am not a demon as suggested. I am into demeaning & humiliating sex acts and seem to have a great desire to be sexually humiliated even though I know it will hurt.

    I cum the hardest when I am being hurt & dominated.. I don't know what to say about the pee thing, I didn't do that but I loved to hide toys inside me and get people to guess where they were hidden.. -shrugs-

  4. #4
    lana111
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    absolutely, i work with this population (well, the offenders rather, but i still hear a lot about victims and such).

    I have one case where the person was an offender, but it wasnt until years later that he remembered being abused by his father. he really didnt show too many 'signs' of being offended upon, but he def had no recollection of the abuse until now.

  5. #5
    cela
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    It common not to remember sexual trauma. A good trauma therapist has techniques to help you through the process. I was physically abused, but only can remember one instance. The only thing I can remember is being afraid all of the time. It's weird that I blocked it all out, but it was a survival mechanism.

  6. #6
    TomboyMS
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    Toddlers don't know about the sex act unless someone teaches them. How did these men gain access to you? Make sure that you see a reputable therapist. All therapists are NOT created equal.

  7. #7
    floridagirlal
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    Quote Originally Posted by TomboyMS [Register to see the link]
    Toddlers don't know about the sex act unless someone teaches them. How did these men gain access to you? Make sure that you see a reputable therapist. All therapists are NOT created equal.
    I agree that I had to learn the sexual behavior somewhere. I've always thought that maybe I watched my parents have sex and that's where I got it. Is that possible? I know that I was acting sexually by the time I was 4 so I had to learn before then.

    As far as men having access to me....there could have been many! I was born to parents who were 18. They went away to college and I only stayed with them occasionally. I actually lived with my grandparents, although my mother won't admit to that. She says that her parents helped her by keeping me...but I lived with them. My mother had 2 younger brothers and a younger sister who were all still living at home when I came along so it could have been someone in the house. If I had to guess, it was one of the brothers. I have always felt uncomfortable around him but I thought it was just because he was weird.

  8. #8
    Tryptophan
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    One thing to remember is that maybe you don't remember it NOW because it's been so long. I was sexually abused by my father at a very young age, and I never knew it until I found out later that I had acquired an STD (found out around my teenage years but I had never had sex with anybody because I was so shy). There were also other physical aspects of it that the doctors were sure could only be due to rape/sexual abuse and they spoke to me about it so I started looking more into it. Finding out the physical aspects/consequences/results of rape were really a blessing because I would have never known why I was the way I was had it not manifested itself in a physical way. My personality reflected all the signs of someone who'd been abused (PTSD) but I would have never known why had it not been for this.

    I had no recollection of it until I went to a therapist. We tied the knots. There were no suggestive questions like sometimes therapists get blamed for doing. Certain recollections of it all came very slowly from my memory. I later found out that he had the STD that was transmitted to me, and that one of my sister's was conceived through rape because he raped my mother. She had never spoken about this until I brought up the things that were happening to me. She told me that they only had ended up getting married because it was one of those times where if you got somebody pregnant you had to marry them. My mother was basically forced to marry a rapist by her parents because it was the right "societal" thing to do. To this day, I have no full recollection of it but now I know why I used to wake up in the middle of the night sweating because it would haunt my "dreams". I guess that no matter what happened, the trauma remained in my unconscious and it showed through my personality, and my dreams, which are really just manifestations of our unconscious. As a child, I would also pee (and sometimes poop) on myself at night because of fear. I also found that maybe I don't remember it because he used to give me drinks that to this day I am not sure if they were to make me sleep, sedate me or what. Maybe I was just too young, so I wouldn't know.

    I haven't had sex with anybody because I'm still working on my fears, and the way I am so I wouldn't know how I like "it", but I know there are other rape victims who just enter this vicious cycle of being victims until it's treated. If you were taken advantage of as a child, it's hard for you to get out of that situation and it truly does become a cycle, and it reflects on your personality. Victims all have different ways of expressing their defense mechanisms. It's scary to think that no matter what, it always shows on your personality one way or another.

    I would recommend that you find a Psychologist that specializes in treating victims of sexual abuse. I went through many "therapists" (people working on their internships to get their master's mostly) that made it all that harder to overcome the trauma. There's too many inept psychology majors out there who really aren't willing to help. You have to find the right match for you. Finding a Psychologist is no different than finding a friend but they know what to look for. It was so hard for me to find that right person that I would want to comfortably open up to. I don't blame the therapists that weren't able to help for not being able to work on my case. They all choose different paths to go into, and some choose to work with children with Down Syndrome rather than victims of sexual abuse. It's kind of like, choose a pediatrician for a child rather a Psychiatrist... Well you know what I mean, choose someone who has chosen to go in that field because a lot of times means they have some experience with it themselves.

    TomboyMS is right as well. Unless someone teaches you about certain sexual acts, it's weird that you would engage in them at such a young age. There's always the "hormonally" premature kids but 4-5 is really just too young. I don't want to say anything that will seem suggestive though, because it'll interfere with your own thoughts of sexual abuse so I'll refrain from saying anything else.

    You have some pretty good insight on what the "abnormal" behaviors are though. If it doesn't feel right then it probably isn't. I've heard of people that are into BDSM but they accept it as a way of life but you clearly are aware that in your case, it is "abnormal" so it is probably an indication of some unconscious thought processes.
    Last edited by Tryptophan; 03-15-2011 at 09:42 AM.

  9. #9
    hear_her_roar
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    I don't think you're crazy, because you're not. At all.

    It can be really common for kids to assume they were somehow "bringing on" or "asking for" the sexual attention, but the fact of the matter is if a little child was asking for sex or to be touched any sane adult would get that child help, not touch the child. No matter what the situation, even if you were a little kid running around begging to be abused (which I doubt you were), NOTHING that happened to you was in ANY WAY YOUR FAULT.

  10. #10
    abitbroken
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    I would be careful of therapists trying to convince you of things that happen that you don't remember. There are young kids who talk about poop and flash their private parts to get attention or a rise out of people. They do it because they have been introduced to it in an inappropriate way or just the opposite - no one taught them that their body was private. My sister used to start taking off her clothes at family parties - she was NEVER abused, she just didn't know she was to go somewhere private, because, heck, mom was always in the room helping her and maybe a sibling when she was changing. She thought it was a public event among family and parties were family. She was set straight for sure.

    Also, young kids are naturally extremely curious about their bodies.

    Maybe you were touched, maybe you weren't. But I would stay away from therapists trying to pinpoint "who did this" and focus on your current life and your current sexual issues. In the end, it doesn't matter "why" you do or feel the way you feel but what you are doing about it to build your self esteem or understand your preferences.

    I do think urinating in toy boxes (which to me is something different from usual sex abuse symptoms) and engaging in sex acts with friends is a questionable - but urinating in the toybox I have heard my aunt talk about relating to special needs kids she deals with and not sex abuse. Also, children often play "doctor" but most of the time they don't go beyond looking - for some unknown reason an adult never intervened or the friend didn't think it was wrong either. Maybe lack of supervision or no one telling you your body was private?

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