Beyond Lady Pandora – Episode12a – The Men In My Life – Beyond Lady Pandora
People generally believe that the bad people are in the minority and this allows them to feel safe, to function easily. They trust their family, their neighbours, people they see everyday. I learnt the truth. I do not have the bliss of ignorance. The men who used and abused me as a child came from every walk of life. Rich, poor, crazy, business owners, athletes, fathers, husbands, sons from great families… if given the opportunity, a majority of men would take and abuse an underage girl for their own pleasure. They would do this and then go back to their lives like nothing had happened. Often, in the case of young men, their family would make excuses for them and blame the girl. I learned that bad and selfish people are in the majority, hiding behind illusions of their own creation and that veil only dropped to expose who they actually are when they were put in a position of power alone with a helpless child. I saw who they really were, who they would be if they could be and had the chance. I saw the truth and it killed me. It killed my hope, my trust, my belief in the goodness of humanity.
I felt like nothing more than a helpless animal, like a pet dog or cat. I was at the mercy of the adults around me. There was no one to protect, guide, or teach me. I was just surviving and eventually, I started to feel like it was too hard to survive. There was no reward to living. Maybe death wouldn’t be so terrible. It had to be better than life.
There was a man who invited me into his house for a beer as I walking by. It was hot, we talked for a bit. He was handsome, he seemed nice. I agreed and we entered his apartment. It was an old house on my route home, run down, but most houses in that area were. I turned my back to see the room and before I knew it, I was overpowered from behind, pushed to the bed nearby. I fell on the bed, feeling the firmness of the matress, it bounced against my weight and I thought perhaps he would just rape me. That wouldn’t be so bad. He turned me over, my hands tied somehow behind my back, it was happening too quickly for my mind to adjust and understand. He was quick and strong. He was on top of me and then I saw the gun. He held it to my head. He began talking and the words blurred but I did manage to understand that he was crazy and delusional. I had to do something to survive and he was making it clear he intended for me to die. It was going to be a rape and murder, no witness. I played on his delusions by convincing him calmly that my father was a very bad and powerful man and that if he harmed me in any way, there would be no way out. I convinced him that both the police and criminal world would find him, they would know, and they would hurt him quite badly before he ever got the opportunity to die. He held the gun to my head. He was angry. He had a plan but he couldn’t risk that I was telling the truth. I told him if he let me go, I would pretend this had never happened. He told me if I told anyone, he would kill me. He let me go. I walked calmly, confidently. I showed no fear at all, I played the part. I left. I saw him lurking out his door a few times before I found a new path home. One time, he shouted out to me, laughing, asking if I wanted to come in. He was mocking me. I found a new path home. I told no one, who would care about me anyway?
Mother had convinced us completely that children services were evil. If they knew what went on they would take us away and they would put us somewhere much worse where we would be beaten, raped, and worse. We might be killed. We were completely convinced that we must avoid them and lie if we had to talk to them. This included the police. They were not to be trusted. No authority was to be trusted because they would harm us by putting us in a place far worse. Beyond that, I had seen that no matter the job, men could not be trusted at all. So, who would I tell? There was no one.
There was a group of men who were canoeing, they were on the red river and they were young and handsome. One offered me a beer, I was sitting on the dock, just thinking. One offered me a ride. He was so very nice, obviously well bred and taught. I thought it would be fun so I got in his canoe. We drank a bit and he took me home. He told me he was getting married the next day so I would have to leave during the night. I was shocked. I agreed because I did not know what to do. He had sex with me, I did not fight, he was not rough or mean. I fell asleep because I had been drinking. I woke to him screaming at me, calling me awful names, threatening me. It was morning. People were outside. I was angry now. I did not look like an adult, it’s not like he made an honest mistake. He decided to sleep with a child and take advantage of her the night before he was going to get married and now, he was acting like it was something I had done to him. I was furious. I got dressed. He told me to leave by the back door, to go into the woods. I did not even know my way back. I made a decision. He needed to be exposed for the prick he was. I walked out the back door, right through the yard past the driveway where his family and bride were. I heard him screaming, I heard her screaming. I kept walking. He was not going to fool that woman anymore. She knew what he had done. I had at least saved her from making a terrible mistake. Perhaps, some good could come of this. I wandered until I found a familiar street and then headed off.
The men always felt that it was my fault, they always blamed me but it was them who were the adults. It was them creating these situations. My lack of fight did not mean I consented. I was numb, used to being abused. I was tired of fighting.
There was a biker who was friends with a man I had “dated”. I put dated in quotations because really, a young teenager cannot really consent when she is traumatised and surrounded by abusive adult men. Now, I did begin saying I was 19 and I do admit that freely. I did so because that allowed me to drink. However, I have photos of myself at that time and I do not look more than 13. I mean, I was short, small and obviously far from being an adult. I was rather gangly, overly skinny. No one was fooled. It was just an excuse for them to use to their own advantage. Now, this bikers friend was actually a really nice guy and I had truly liked him. Of all the men in my life, he was the kindest. He had come to my home when I was not there one day and my mother was jealous. She was jealous of how men liked me. She told him to stay away from me, that I was a liar and a child. She did not actually care that I was a child at any other time, she willingly let men abuse me. However, she was jealous and wanted to hurt me knowing that I did like him. So she did everything in her power to make him hate me and her friends helped. He had just vanished. I never saw him again. Well, this friend decided I needed to be dealt with and so as I walked by on the other side of the street from him and his friends, he ran over to me. He started threatening me, telling me that I was playing a dangerous game. I had no idea what he was talking about. I did not understand. I was in shock and he looked rather insane. I was not sure what to do and his words made my head whir. I could not focus, I did not undertand. I just kept saying yes because I thought he wanted to hear yes. We were right on the street. I thought someone would see as they walked by, the street was not empty. Someone would help me but no one did. He slammed me on my back in the grass near the sidewalk, talking about how he could rape me and kill me right there. I was terrified. Eventually, he started laughing at me, I was yelling at him to let me up. He did and walked away telling me not to be on this street anymore or he would get me. I was running out of streets to walk on. I went home. I told no one, no one cared.
There was a young man who moved in as a room-mate. Mother then had two room-mates. He was young and handsome, rather a geek but kind. We began dating. He was over 18. Everyone knew we were dating. I was still a child. He would have me in his room spending the night and I did so willingly because he would bring me food from work. He held me. He was kind to me and I was grateful but I did not understand relationships. I did not know how to have one. I did not understand the complexities of these things. I had only ever been used by men. I did not understand monogamy and I only knew versions of right and wrong and morality based on my own interpretations of what I experienced. I was kind to him, grateful to him but I would still wander and I played the bad girl because that was what I was and how I had survived this long. That was what he had fallen for but like many, he did so with a vision in his head. He had this fantasy of changing me, how I would change for him and be this perfect dream girl. He did not take my age into account. He did not consider why I as a young girl behaved as I did. He did not look far enough into me to understand who I was or what I was. He just had this fantasy version of me in his head and I could never be that for him, it was not me. I could not sit still, wandering and keeping busy kept me from thinking, from feeling. I had to keep moving or I would die, I would fall apart. It ended poorly, of course. He began seeing an older woman publicly while with me and it enraged me because I felt not only helpless to be a good girlfriend or to hold a relationship of any kind but also I felt used, betrayed and cheated. I had done wrong, absolutely. I had been used by men while with him and he assumed due to my attitude and my bad girl illusion to look tough that I was cheating. In a way, he was right because I did flirt and I did not fight. I just let things happen, I went with the flow. I did not know any other way to survive my life. So, I lost my temper and my mind and I did so publicly, calling them both out. Well, she was married and cheating on her husband as well and my outing of them resulted in everyone being pissed off at me as if I had forced them to cheat. I was 13 years old. Yes, I was a messed up kid and I lost my temper at once again being betrayed after a lifetime of abuse and yes, I did it publicly but I did not force them to decide to have sex. I did not make her cheat on her husband. Yet, once again, I was a great scapegoat and I was to blame for her husband finding out, therefore it was me who was awful and they were purely innocent. I could not believe the bullshit, honestly. I was scared, hurt, confused and I just did not understand what the hell was going on. I recieved threats of all kinds as it had occurred online so I left the internet entirely and life continued on as it always had. He moved out, his sister hated me but she was a friend of my mother’s and thought she was a dragon, so I did not much care. I was sad that I had failed and I honestly thought that relationships were very confusing and difficult. I wondered if, due to my life, I would ever be a girlfriend or a wife or if I would never be more than a body to use.
I had had two boyfriends before him. One was a young native boy. I had really liked him, he was cute and my first boyfriend. One day, he took me to his house and his father started screaming and took him upstairs. I sat, terrified, on the couch. I heard his father screaming and sounds of terrible abuse and ungodly cries and then his father saying, “See if she likes you now.” I wanted to throw up. He came back downstairs and I told him I had to go, I could not stay. I could not do this. My head was whiring. He begged me to stay but I couldn’t. I was going to throw up, I needed to run. I left. I broke up with him the next day. I told him it was not his fault but I could not deal with it. It had not lasted more than a few weeks. I could not be a cause of abuse or be around while someone was being abused. It was too much. Everyone at school hated me after that for breaking up with them. They did not understand.
I had a jewish boyfriend, that lasted a couple of weeks, maybe three dates. He broke up with me because I was taking him away from God. I did not understand. Was I evil? I just could not understand it. What made me so bad?
I was a teenager but I was really just a kid trying to make it through unbelievable trauma and abuse completely alone. There were so many men who did so many things and at the end, I was always bad and it was my fault. I just did not understand.
There was a man in his 20s who actually had me move in with him into his parents house. He introduced me to his parents. It was so obvious I was nowhere near 16 but to my shock, they didn’t care. That man treated me like complete crap. He had me cook for him, clean for him, and was cheating with his ex-girlfriend the whole time. He got her pregnant and then actually formulated a plan with a his new room-mate once he got his own place, to have him seduce me so he felt justified with kicking me out. Then, the last night we spent together, he raped me. He held me down while I cried, telling him no, telling him he was hurting me. He just took what he wanted and said that it was not rape because we had been dating. He was from a “good family”.
Through this, all of this, I began cutting myself. I did not cut deep enough to scar myself or kill myself, just enough to feel pain. I needed a distraction from the pain inside, the pain inside was so much worse than anything on the outside. I just had no hope left in me. I no longer even had a room of my own as mother had rented it out. I would walk until my entire body hurt just to feel something other than fear and heartbreak. I constantly pushed myself to absolute exhaustion. I barely ate. At 13, I could fit my my thumb and touch my pinky finger around my ankle. I was that skinny. I just wanted it to end. I decided to kill myself to end the pain.
When my mother went out and I was alone, I gathered all of the pills in the house, really just pain killers since no one really saw doctors or dentists beyond what was absolutely required. There were small bottles, extra large bottles and I forced myself to take every single pill in every one of them as I sat crying on my mother’s bed. I figured I would leave my dead body as a gift for her. I’d be gone, no longer a problem, she could just get rid of me. I lay there refusing to throw up, forcing myself to hold it in as I grew sicker and weaker, slipping slowly away. I wanted it to be faster. Mother walked in while I was waiting to die, looked in and saw me and the empty bottles of pills. I could hear her friends. She just looked at me coldly and said that she was not going to take me to the hospital, that I should just die. She walked away. I just laid there, tears streaming down my cheeks. I knew I was unloved, I knew I was nothing, but how cruel of her to say so as I lay there dying. I suddenly did not want to die, not because I wanted to live, but because she was so unbearably cruel. She did not deserve to get off so easy, to get her wish, to win. I forced myself to throw up again and again, all over her floor and bed. I left the mess for her to clean up. I was weak but I lived. I had no idea if life would be anything but awful but I would not die, she did not deserve to get off that easy. I honestly figured that with me surviving, death likely did not even want me anyways. I couldn’t even die right. That kind of amused me in a sick sort of way.
I had nothing and no one but if I was not going to die, I was going to have to figure out how to live. I hated my mother and nothing angered me more than the fact that I would still jump to protect her from anyone or anything. It infuriated me. I hated my father for ignoring me and not even trying to get me, treating me like I was without value. I hated everyone.
I began looking for people like me on the internet, on my little commodore 128 computer. I had to find people like me, I needed to know I was not alone. What I found was murderers, killers, serial killers, sociopaths. People who experienced the things I had were for the most part terrible people. I was shocked and horrified and I began to study them. I wanted to know why. Could I avoid ending up like them? I studied cases, I studied Jack the Ripper. They were artists, the sociopaths. It was horrible art, to be sure, but they worked with great intelligence and passion. I was terrified and I studied them further. I needed to know when they changed, when they snapped. I had to avoid this. I eventually came upon studies of twins where one was a killer and the other was not, sometimes the other was a cop or judge. As I studied these things, I came to one clear conclusion. It was a choice. At some point, you had to choose. Do you die, do you let hate eat you until you are the monster you feared, or do you fight against those monsters no matter the pain? I chose the latter, my one way out. I had to find a way out before they pushed me too far, before they killed who we were. I let them all out, all of them, everyone inside of me. I set them free. We had to talk. We all chose to refuse to let the fear, pain and anger kill us. It would be hard. We were born into what was really the pits of hell and we would have to claw our way out, we had to learn how to become at least partially functional in society. We had to do it alone and yet, we were not alone because we had each other. We were in this together. We knew that if anyone knew there were more than one of us, it would hurt our chances of getting out and so we made a pact. Each of us would learn certain aspects of life and they would handle that part of life. Work, play, social… we divided up our life into parts and designated who would take care of it. We bagan to communicate with each other, to help each other. We were all we had. We worked as one and for the most part, appeared to be one person. We would now all use the same name, we would pretend and make it work.
My brother was older now, barely home, turning into a monster. He still attacked me regularly for fun and I had to fight him off. He was lost to me. She had killed my brother and I was entirely alone, because though his body kept moving, my little brother was no longer there. He could not have cared if I died and I knew it. I started staying away from home more because I had to find a way to get away from all of them. I still would protect my brother if I could but I now had another reponsibility to take on. I had to protect others from him. I saw what he was becoming. He was on his way to becoming a monster and I watched because he was my monster. I could not stop him from being who he would be, he was so angry. I could however watch and when he went too far, I could pray to be there to stop him. I checked in on him as I could. I was horrified, angry, sad, and embarassed about my brother. I had not saved him at all. I had failed him and now, all I could do was watch and pray. He was a thief. He was violent. He was filled with anger and hate. He destroyed anything remotely nice I got. He was on a very bad path.
I had told people of my dreams when I was younger. I wanted to be a lawyer or a judge. Everyone laughed at me for daring to think I could ever be anything. My dreams had all been quashed but now, I had to dare to hope for a future of some kind. I had no idea what I had the right to dare to dream, perhaps nothing, but I had to try. So, I protected my tiny flame of hope with everything I had, I had to get out. Others had done it, had found a way, I would too. I screamed into my pillows, I beat my bed, I cried frequently. I let my anger out whenever it built up. I spent time thinking and I controlled myself. Of course, I wanted to kill them all, make them suffer for what they did. I wanted them to feel my pain and fear me but I was not going to take that path. I would not let them win by destroying me. It was not fair, none of them would pay, but I had to accept that life was just not fair. It was hard to swallow but it was necessary. I had to believe that fate would get them, that karma would find them. I had to leave it to that and walk away. It was a hard time for me. It was scary. I could not leave home fully yet, not that mother would care, but I had to start preparing and learning so that I could escape them all.