I have taken awhile again to post, I have kept this in draft while examining my feelings.
I have never, ever spoken of this in so public a place. I feel I must speak of it, however, because repressing it for so long has certainly not been of any benefit.
I don't know that disclosing it will have positive result either, but at least I will have tried both.
In an earlier blog entry, I believe I briefly mentioned I had been raped.
Well, I was 13 when it happened. I was a virgin, on my way to go spend the night with a girlfriend. Long story short, the rapist left me in the woods when he was finished, and I stumbled out, and found my way to my girlfriend's house. I didn't tell my mom (who was out with some boyfriend while my step dad was in Viet Nam). Besides, I felt the rape was my fault, that I caused it somehow, by something I did.
I was pretty sure that was what my mom would say, if she believed me at all.
She hadn't believed me when I told her the dentist slapped me in the face, and she didn't believe me when I reported the things that were being done to me in the dark.
She would certainly have made the rape my fault, too.
I was too young to consider how important it was to put the rapist away; like I said, thinking I was somehow responsible made it less his fault.
*A happy/ sad update: After not speaking with her for many years, I was in college when that same girlfriend called me with news:
The guy who had raped me was going to prison, again, but this time forever (I had recognized my attacker), and my girlfriend knew of him too. So when she heard about it, she tracked me down to let me know.
Sadly, it had taken the rape of a 6 yr old, and the murder of her 18 year old babysitter, to get this pig off the streets. So I blame myself, in part, for that double tragedy.
To further compound my emotional distress, I found out I was pregnant. I hadn't had a clue until I was nearly 6 months along! I'd not long been having periods, and they were always irregular anyway. I was so incredibly naive.
I had just turned 14 when, after an incredibly torturous labor and delivery, I gave birth to a healthy girl.
I had already arranged for her to be adopted. I felt so mature, making this sacrifice for all the right reasons, with genuine faith her life would be so much better than mine. And, so much better than the life she would have had with me.
Of course, I didn't know that ten years later I would be treated for Stage 3 ovarian carcinoma, and would never have another child.
(Again shortened for brevity)
My daughter found me a few years ago, and initiated contact. What I expected was so much different than what emerged.
She had been basically homeless for a few years, and was a stumbling, DT and seizure experiencing, full time alcoholic.
The relationship between us has not been a rousing success.
Right now, thankfully, she is sober. Otherwise, she would likely be dead. She was admitted to the ICU last year because she could not breathe or walk, or feel her hands or feet.
She detoxed without any choice, but at least in a safe and drug convenient environment. By the time she was released a couple months later, her daily dependence on alcohol was over.
She has been sober since August 24, 2010. She is getting some mental health treatment, so hopefully her issues can be addressed with something other than booze.
I am a pessimist in this deal of the cards. The slightest upset is likely to send her spiraling into a relapse. Her boyfriend is a recovering methamphetamine user/cook, so they supposedly 'keep each other clean'.
The fallout for me, of course, is yet another morsel of my past that I feel guilty about.
What genetic component figures in to her problems? What kind of life could I have provided, in comparison?
And today, although I haven't quit, I have cut my methamphetamine use by at least 30%. Her DOC was alcohol, but I see that our fundamental emotional/mental health issues are nearly identical, and we both self-medicated from a young age.
How on earth did I manage to pass on substance abuse issues, PTSD, 'victim' predilection; and how do I NOT feel guilty for that as well?
I am staggering under the weight of these emotions, and drugs certainly succeed where I have failed, to escape the feelings that terrify me. I have no way to address them, to cope with them if they are loosed.
I feel better for having gotten this said 'out loud' so to speak.
I will likely write more later about her diagnoses (or lack of), and the absurd amount of opiates she is now prescribed.