the tao of jaklumen

the path of the sage must become the path of the hero

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The Lies Our Abuse Tells Us | Childhood Sexual Abuse Recovery

A good online friend and helper of mine, Bobbi Parish, wrote an article recently.  Here’s an excerpt, with a link to the article:

The four lies are:
— We should be ashamed of our abuse, which manifests as Shame
— Our abuse was our fault, which manifests as Self-Blame
— We are bad because we caused our abuse and deserved our abuse which manifests as Low Self-Worth or even Self-Loathing
— We are powerless to change anything in our lives, which manifests as Powerlessness

The shame, self-blame and low self-worth reside at the very core of our being, defining the way we see ourselves and the world. That triad of lies is protected by the fourth lie: that we are powerless. The powerlessness tells us we cannot change the feelings of shame, self-blame and low self-worth that we feel. In essence, our feeling of powerlessness guards that core triad of lies. For this reason, I call those four lies The Lying Triad and Its Dark Guard.

The Lies Our Abuse Tells Us | Childhood Sexual Abuse Recovery.

Please take a moment to take this article in, dear readers.  I was just tweeting with Bobbi a moment ago– she was telling me the “The Lying Triad and Its Dark Guard” came to her in the middle of the night as I was saying it sounded like an enemy of an epic saga.

I felt inspired.  So many people know The Hero’s Journey as a template for a story, but I see it as a reflection of real life.  Our legends, myths, folkloric stories– are reflections of our values, dreams, outlook, for the societies we live in.  I took some time to explain that in a series of posts on “The Inner Journey”.

In essence, this will be “The Journey out of Childhood Abuse” and “From Zero to Hero”.  (Remember that WordPress blogging challenge, dear readers?  You see now why the theme resonated with me?”

Stay Tuned


TToT: Seizing the Sword of Trauma and a path to healing

I’ve shared this video before as a mashup, but I’m showing it again because I think the juxtaposition is important– the One Ring of Sauron is compared to the Autobot Matrix of Leadership.  On the one hand, Tolkien presents an artifact that is wrought of evil, and that will enslave all life in Middle Earth if it is not cast back from whence it came.  On the other hand, the Autobot Matrix is presented as a mantle of leadership, that when unlocked, “will light our darkest hour.”

How can this be?

I take inspiration from Angela Shelton, who compares trauma to a virtual sword, but through the process of healing, can be drawn out as strength and protection.

Image credit: from “Be Your Own Hero: Healing Workbook” by Angela Shelton, with illustrations by James Murray

Her first workbook was aimed at women, but she found that men needed a resource, too.

Ever since I started speaking out about child sexual abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault, I’ve heard from male survivors right in line with the females.

That goes for perpetrators too. Males are not the only ones who harm adults and children. Women are perpetrators too, in sexual abuse and domestic violence. They can be very sick and twisted too!

Victims of abuse are just that – victims. Luckily, the ones I hear from are the victims who become survivors and then move from surviving to thriving.

Abuse is not a “Women’s Issue” it’s a People Problem!

YES!  Someone who gets it!

It’s not been easy, and it’s been terribly lonely.  Let me tell you again, dear readers:

The reason why I started blogging 10 years ago was so I could face the pain of the abuse my mother heaped on me as a child, and to deal with all the fallout that caused.

I wish I could say I found the answers sooner, but it has been a long, slow process.  It took me years just to figure out (and quite all by myself, unfortunately) why I was so angry.  It took me many years more to learn that what my mother did was NOT acceptable– people I realized I could trust told me so.

I am getting some wonderful help from some marvelous women I met on Twitter: Rachel Thompson, Bobbi Parish, and Athena Moberg.  I can’t remember all how it unfolded, but I found out about some wonderful resources they created and coordinate, and… wow.  I’ve been learning more things, more effective information, then I have ever learned so far in over 30 years of counseling/therapy.

Specifically, I started participating in a Twitter chat called #SexAbuseChat, which is a support chat for survivors of sexual abuse.  Then I was informed Athena and Bobbi were starting a Google Hangout for the No More Shame Project– a live stream of them discussing subjects from the chat.

Well, I said then some things I’ve said now– and I was deeply honored that Athena gave me a shoutout twice for it… but I want you to know, dear readers, that I don’t write this to brag, but just that I am SO grateful.  I was grateful to be receiving resources that FINALLY were helpful and useful– even if some of it were confirmations that I was doing some things right!  I am grateful to have my expressions of gratitude acknowledged, and to be one small example that the resources are doing good, and that they work.

Image credit: Athena Moberg and the No More Shame Project. One of the things these ladies really helped me to understand was how I was recycling through old cycles of trauma with triggers of new trauma, but more importantly, how I could begin to manage that cycle, to avoid and lessen that response. It fit very well with my other work in recovery.

A request, dear readers… please, I ask for your support.  I assure you that also I am starting to speak up, more men are silent.  I can think of at least one person who has said very little that I am aware of, and I won’t say who it is because, well, it was said in confidence, and it’s not my story to tell.

Will you support me, dear readers?  Will you support the wounded men in your lives, so that they may have peace, and stand for peace?  How will you spread the word?  Do you agree that abuse is not just a women’s issue, but a danger to all people, regardless of gender?



This is more than a party.

Those of you that have been reading for a while may remember I’m no stranger to sexual predations online, or other things that seemed to ruin the party.

There was A 10-year blogging journey: Woman As Temptress (LiveJournal) and no pervs for a family account– SERIOUSLY (Flickr).  The former is about a young woman that started following me on LiveJournal, befriended me, and then decided to virtually take advantage of me sexually.  The latter was about running into pedophiles on Flickr.  What especially chilled my blood was one that asked for prurient pictures of my 6-year old son appeared to be a woman.

This happened at VOX, too, although along less obviously predatory lines.  One I’ll simply refer to as “S”.   S seemed to have a great fascination with posting commercially produced photos of women in lingerie, as well as a handful of other posts that were sexually suggestive.  S always insisted that the photos were for considerations of artistic expression, but after I complained a bit that they were alluring, she posted something more along the lines of softcore porn, urging me to have sex with Cimmorene.

There was no question that S had been abused– she once posted a photo of herself covered in bruises.  She confessed to me about performing on webcam for men.

I felt empathy for her, as I had been in similar situations that I won’t elaborate on right now.  But looking back on the gossip she started, well, that wasn’t so flattering.  She started some against another user in particular, and I didn’t know who to believe at the time.  I admit, that’s a difficult thing about surviving abuse– with a history of mixed messages, it’s difficult to tell who’s being deceitful and who’s telling the truth.  Before VOX closed, she re-emerged with a new identity.

With a different incident, I was on a different side of the issue.  This involved someone named Val.

Val and I didn’t see eye to eye on everything, but she had a really infectious, delightfully sick sense of humor.  Remember 2 Girls, 1 Cup?  Yeah, she thought that was funny as hell.   She thought videos of people reacting to that video was especially funny as hell.  To this day, I sometimes utter, “Mmm, cakefarts” out loud because the funny for her one day was a skinny little waif in underwear, sitting on a chocolate cake as if she was going to take a dump, and farting on it.  She also posted a picture of some clouds once, said that one of her family members thought it was God parting them to look down on the world, and she said it looked like the Goatse photo.  (Don’t Google that, please, unless you’re sure you want to see something revolting.)

Val was my inspiration for the “Sick F***” club, especially as the “motto” was originally about her:

“Damn it, Val, you really are a sick f! … good thing I like sick fs.”

What I was very blissfully unaware of was that although Val was married, she decided to have an affair, with another VOX user.   All I knew at the time was that she suddenly said she was moving and that she had divorced “Mr. Val”.

I asked about it later after a number of us moved to WordPress, because she decided to close the blog she’d imported over, and then took on a new name for another blog.  I was told that this other user decided to make the affair public on the blogging platform, and that there was a “Great Shunning” of her.

She just faded into the background after a while, did what I’d call a “drop off the face of the earth.”  I was sad about that.

I’ll leave it to you readers to draw parallels about all the above to this recent scandal.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, that’s okay.  I don’t think it’s anything you’d really want to delve into.  If you do, well, know that I understand there’s been a lot of gossip and hate mail floating around about it, especially as in some instances, it’s just vitriol aimed by associations.  It’s not cool with me.

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