Being Raped

Discussion in 'Relationships, Discrimination, and Jealousy' started by Imported, Aug 12, 2004.

  1. Imported

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    Javierdude22: Eyzz...

    I don't really know why I put this topic in this section, seemed appropriate.

    How do I start this....ok...I have been in a relationship with a guy, off and on, for the past two years now roughly. It was all great in the beginning, but the engine started hampering about a year ago. Not because anything was out of place, but because he had a problem.

    When we started our thing he made it clear to me that he he doesnt really get hard. I figured it was cause he is indeed big (this really being the most unimportant part of the story). He told me however that he had problems with having sex, getting aroused, and that he couldn't remember having been rock hard ever in his life, even jacking. It so turns that after a few weeks of going out he did get rockhard and that he himself was surprised about his...well...appetite....which made him pretty damn happy.

    Now things are not so good, for quite some time now....because of other reasons than his (mostly because of my well known, deeprooted issues with being gay). However, he started to confide in me finally what his initial problems was with sex.

    It turns out that at the age of 18, he was raped by 4 guys. To get a stereotype image out of everyone's head...this guy is the tv type hip hop kinda streetguy with a bad temper who found out he wasnt into girls very much. We got in touch through our mutual problems with this issue I guess. He had been trying to figure out his feelings regarding the subject back then, and befriended an older guy who played in a Dutch football team. The football guy confessed to being gay and to having feelings for my friend. My friend didnt equally respond to them, and said to want to be friends. Their next friendly meeting however involved rape with 3 of that guys friends.

    He is unfortunately the type of guy who will hide stuff, not tell anyone, not accept help...he cannot file this crim because no one knows he is gay and he feels ashamed. He tells me he feels like a monster, and acts like it was his own fault (at 18 then!). He sleeps bad, and ive noticed he shivers in his sleep, with shocking moves (epileptic like) and even outright bursts of energy where he jumps up out of his sleep. This is not every night, but the constant (and I do mean constant) shivers turn up almost every night. He does admit he has many nightmares...and is afraid to sleep...even now after 6 years. He has trouble looking in the mirror, and says he finds himself unattractive...him probably being the most attractive guy I have come to know. I understand these are all caused by the trauma of rape.

    I do hope however that someone has advice how to handle this. I am gonna search for psychologists regardless whether he wants to go or not...but in the meantime, I wanna know what I can do. If we talk about the subject a bit too long (15 min.) he wants to stop. What should I do, how often, should I not mention certain things or should I? Links to usefull websites?

    Look, i do hope we will somehow get back together....he wants to very much, but feels he is so f-ed up right now that he wouldnt function much in a relationship. He has trouble having sex right now. I could care less about that...but do hope he will see some kind of future. That all being said, I want him to heal first and foremost...even if nothing else would result.

    Maybe I surprised a few people with this...but this is turning ugly....so any help is very very welcome.

    Laterz
     
  2. Imported

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    carolinacurious: IMO:

    He needs to get some therapy BUT HE needs to realize that he needs therapy. You can certainly help here but not force him.

    I think you can be generally supportive and sympathetic but that if you are not a psychologist yourself then this issue is too big for you to handle.

    CC.
     
  3. mindseye

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    *nods*

    Moreover, you should offer to go with him. He's been carrying this around for years, and unburdening himself of it will be a big deal. Having your support as he takes that big step will mean a lot to him.
     
  4. jonb

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    Well, the first thing is admitting he needs therapy. He also needs to understand that being raped didn't make him gay.

    Rape victims in general have difficult issues. Most don't want to talk about it. And who can blame them?
     
  5. ponybilt

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    Definitely.... therapy. Anyone who's been abused, raped, molested has been subjected to an assault that is just as much psychological as it is physical. The physical stuff gets treated and heals, but without therapy the mind can't heal.

    Remember, karma is a very good thing; unfortunately we don't have ring-side seats when it strikes.
     
  6. Pappy

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    Not much left to say that hasn't already been said. Make sure he understands that he did nothing to cause the rape and that he's not to blame for what happened. I guess the best thing you can do is be there for him.
     
  7. ponybilt

    ponybilt Member

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    One of the best pieces of advice.
     
  8. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

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    I, too, second the therapy notion. In fact, I think a significant amount of time should be spent letting him tap into those unresolved feelings of violation, fear, mistrust, and even self-directed loathing. A good portion of his would-be work may involve experiential techniques. Fair warning: It's incredibly difficult to handle the swell of emotions that come from such catastrophic events.

    Here's an example of a technique called sand play therapy. Quite literally, the client gets to recreate a "safe world" using sand, figurines, toys, and so on. The potency of this therapy lies in its ability to create nonverbal expressions of feelings that are difficult to put into words. Subtle moves. The act of play and immersing oneself in the activity creates a stage for "recreation" -- literally, he might tap into the fear of being restrained by four guys or he might wall himself away from these impending figures. And as stalwart as he is about talking about this, he might just break down right then and there.

    Offer to stay at his side during the therapy. At the same time, let him take the lead -- make the appointment, talk to the therapist, let him be the first one to come to you if he's feeling vulnerable or scared. In any case, the symptoms you've talked about seem directly correlated to his experience. He probably "relives" that rape every single time he's in close quarters with a man, let alone one with whom he is intimate.

    He needs the help. And I trust he'll do the right thing -- he'll need that therapist in order to get some well-deserved piece of mind.
     
  9. Imported

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    carolinacurious: Not to contradict but merely to add...

    I think you should offer to go to therapy with him; however, I think you should also be prepared that he may not want you there or may want to go alone after the first session. He may also want to keep what happens in his sessions private, you will be supporting him by allowing this and not feeling (or at least not expressing) that he is keeping something from you.

    Be prepared to talk about it when he's ready and also to drop the subject on a dime.

    You really should not try to be an amateur psychologist here. You can be accepting, supportive, loving, caring and reinforce that he did not deserve or ask for what happened but IMO going much further than that will be potentially doing him a disservice and putting yourself in a situation that you are not equipped to handle.
     
  10. D_Barbi_Queue

    D_Barbi_Queue Account Disabled

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    yes, therapy is a good idea and CC has a good point...offer to go with him, but also let him know that you'll understand if he wants to go alone for a while. I can tell you that the first few times discussing something like that is very hard. I'm sure he's feels a lot at fault about it and that's seems to be one of the most difficult things to overcome. Keep reassuring him that he had nothing to do to cause it and he is indeed a very attractive person. Lots of reassurance helps.

    It may sound cheesy, but it may help at first for him to write down his feelings on some paper. He may even feel safer about the idea if he knows that he will dispose of it somehow right away as well. He certainly needs to get it out of his system.
     
  11. Imported

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    Javierdude22: Thanx for the responses people...

    I think the therapy thing is logically the best thing he could do and I am gently easing that into his mind...he is totally opposed by it, probably because he feels ashamed, and is not comfortable about talking 'gay stuff' with many people let alone a stranger. I will press for it though.

    Carolinacurious, what you said is something I have kept in mind as well. I really do not want to be the amateur psychologist here...I think that might have adverse effects on him...as well as me. Thats why I really wanna know just how to approach this. I have concluded to listen and reassure as much as possible, but I also believe talking about it is the key. Like you said though, he often wants to drop it like a dime, and I can be difficult about that. Maybe I shóuld just drop it like a dime when it becomes too much.

    I try to reassure him as much as I can...but he somehow doesnt take my word for it. He is scared I will leave him (this anxiety being caused I think by his dad leaving his family when he was young), and when I say he is a great, smart, and caring guy...it somehow makes him more frustrated, he doesnt want to hear it. That is what worries me the most, he doesnt even want to hear it, let alone believe it.
     
  12. Imported

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    bih20: He is stuck, and he definetley needs therapy. A very very high percentage of gay teens commit suicide...the idea of just being gay and him not being comfortable about it is enough, on top of this the rape has really confused and damaged his mental state.

    There is a simple reason he doesn't believe you..logically, it doesnt' work. For example, when a father hits his child, the child get the message that they are worthless, their father does not love them, a very powerful action. It would not be enough for a friend to come and just say "you are not worthless". Which action are they going to remember? the pain of their father physically hitting them..or your words?

    Your words would mean something if he was not traumatized for a long time..but at this point he has been living with this for so long, the simple words of "you are not worthless" are simply not enough.

    He needs therapy where they will be able to make him deal with his situations in the proper manner, deal with the fact that he was raped, and also come to terms with being gay and that whole situation.

    Right now his mind is not open for listening...its like a cloud, and its raining and there are storms..the storms have to stop, the clouds have to move out..and then he can start dealing with it.
     
  13. Imported

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    TripodMillenium: I've been through depression, and coming to terms with my sexuality.... which I was freaked about for a while......


    I can say that how he is responding is normal for things that mess you up like this...... But, be strong and just keep trying to help.... be there for him..... be his rock to hold on to..... Eventually he will begin to accept that things may be different than he thinks, and what you've been saying and what the therapist has been saying (if he finally goes to one) will start to sink in, and he'll start to consider them...... It may take a good while.... ((I couldn't know, I only know about depression and coming to terms with being gay..... )) but, eventually things will start to help......


    You can't expect anything to get through from the get-go...... You have to be patient...... Such change from how he's been thinking for so long will be tough, and will take a while to be able to happen.....
     
  14. Imported

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    HornyVeteranSJ: Javi, I almost can relate to your friend. I was a victim of incest rape and sexual abuse from my older brother 9 years my senior. I hid that from everybody and myself for years until I joined the Air Force. When something like that happens to a person it's very hard to trust anyone, and even harder to truly enjoy sex. It took 5 years of therapy, meds etc. and I'm still dealing with the issue..that morphed into other issues. I total agree with the prior posters, especially C.C. and Tripod. I think he knows he needs help. He might feel that therapy makes him less of a man. It's still a stigma about psychotherapy. Have you ever mentioned to him to look into therapy? Does he have the means to get to therapy and pay for it? Just let him know that you are truly there for him, as the trust issue should be a strong one for him. How long ago did the rapes happen? I hope things work out of the both of you.
     
  15. D_Barbi_Queue

    D_Barbi_Queue Account Disabled

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    well, there you go. HV is the one to listen to b/c he's come the closest to experiencing what your beau has gone through. I was talking pretty much from the same background as HV, but I'm a girl and I think it causes less issues than guy on guy (I could be wrong about that too though). Also, my brother ended up passing away when I was 11 (no, I didn't kill him - it was a car accident) and I feel that made things easier for me to deal with not having to face him anymore while I was growing up. My shit hit the fan when I finally told my mom about it 5 yrs later. She had the worst comeback "If he molested you, then you asked for it" to which I told her that I was only 5 when it started - I've forgiven her since then b/c I brought it up in the heat of an argument between us and I know that she loved her son very much and obsessed in having him back. Plus she's appologized since then, but it was one of the harder things to deal with in the whole ordeal.

    anyway, there's at least a couple of us that have an inkling of what he's dealing with. I never took therapy myself (perhaps that is why I was a Psych major in college though ^_^ ), but I have found it easier to talk about these days. The only reason why I usually hold back it I don't want it to end up turning into a pity party for me. I don't tell people b/c I want pity, I tell people b/c I know it is so prevalent and I want other victims to know that they aren't alone.
     
  16. Atlrabbit

    Atlrabbit New Member

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    Just wanted to add "back up' to what has already been said. When a person experiences trauma of this kind...every action, thought, feeling, etc., thereafter is filtered through this event. He is not in a position to see otherwise, no comment to him, or jester, is received without being filtered in his brain by the trauma. The pain is to overwhelming. Plus add to the trauma his own issues with his sexuality and then add on the issues we all have from "just growing up" and his system is on overload.

    It is regretable at this point that he is not aware of the emotional stress this is causing on his system. With consistant love, acceptance, and understanding he will get to a point he will want to unload this huge burden. I hope you will remain by his side and be there when he asks for help.

    Now for you...to deal with a rape victum is very taxing on a relationship, even if that relationship is only a friendship. There are some definite "do's" and "do nots". My suggestion for you is to locate and join a support group for family/friends of rape victims (contact a rape center or crisis hotline, they should be able to guide you-the support group may be made up of supporters of rape victims being all female but some of the issues transend the sexes). Also, run do not walk to the nearest therapist your self. You need a confidental source to deal with your own feelings and emotions. The caregiver or helper also needs the support of a good therapist.
    Best of luck to you both...
     
  17. b1988

    b1988 New Member

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    Jav,
    Glad that you are back. This is a subject that was significant for me....a
    boyfriend with self esteem and self-judgement issues.
    I think that you probably already know what makes sense. The question
    is really whether or not you can bring yourself to follow your best
    instincts.
    Your friend needs professional help. He may not be inclined to get it.
    None of us can be pushed...if so we push back. By the grace of God or
    with luck (depending on your view) he will see the value of help and
    seek it.
    Fear of the unknown can hold us back.
    The only issue that you can deal with is you.
    I came to realize that a relationship with someone who had more
    issues than me was a way to protect myself from being challenged to change.
    Basically a guy who was more fucked up than me was safe.
    But I stayed stuck in a quagmire of self-judgement and doubt when I
    was in that situation. His issues complicated things for me because I was
    then hurt by his "rejection"...a result of his conflict.
    This was a no-win situation. He never sorted out his conflicts and is
    now married with 3 kids. About two years ago, after the birth of his
    third child, he wrote me and said taht he still loved me.
    What a mess. he is 41 now.
    Jav. I have always felt a certain sympatico with your feelings. That
    is why I took the time to write.
    Do yourself a favor and spend as much time thinking about improving
    your own problems with self-judgement as you spend thinking about your friend.
    Ultimately you can't help him if you don't help yourself and if he doesn't want
    help.
    Therapy helped me. Do you think it would be good for you?
    w
    p.s.---sorry if this is hard to read...I didn't proof-read it
     
  18. Imported

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    joe22xxx: I agree with what everyone else has said, but I have to say that reading the original post made me real sad. I was involved with a beautiful girl in HS who'd been sexually abused as a child & it really maimed her (no other word to use for it). I hope your friend will be able to heal from this experience, and you'll be ok in the process too.
     
  19. Dr. Bubbles

    Dr. Bubbles New Member

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    Hi Jav,

    It is obvious that you have received some really good advise thus far from the board. Take heed to it.

    From personal experience, however, I would also caution you to be sensitive to his needs, issues and concerns. The trauma of experiencing something as such really does take something out of a person and one never fully recovers. You always remember what happened and you always, always wonder if you were the cause of it. It is just something that is psychologically disabling, but something that cannot be erased from your mind, either. Therapy is great and is needed, just be prepared to be a shoulder for him should he decide to take that route. A lot of emotional distress as well as anger can arupt from everything he is habouring inside. Trust me, I have been there.

    It is also imperative that you keep assuring him that everything is ok. I know you mentioned that the sexual contact was not really important, but for you it is. We are all human. For him, however, it is probably something he can live without. Your encouragement will help him foster a deeper relationship with you that can help absorb any inhibitions he might have regarding being sexually active with you. Moreover, he needs to feel that he can be comfortable with you. Regardless of how it may sound, there is a trust element that has not been dealt with. There always will be, too.

    I have only been with 2 guys - 3 if I include the one who changed my life. For me, I don't want to be presumed to be easy or slutty. When it happened, and I did end up having it reported because I was brutally beaten and left (over 1 week in a hospital) for dead, comments were made that I probably asked for it. You know the norm - if she dresses like this, then.... I went shopping from work and, well.... the rest is history. My attire: business suit as I've always worn. For a long time, I changed my appearance and wardrobe. My suits became pants suits and I started wearing granny dresses. My therapist helped, tremendously. He helped me to reassure myself and confidence. I am back to wearing my suits and the business attire before the rape.

    I know this is long... My only advise is that you accept him and let him know that he is important to you, regardless of any other circumstances. Furthermore, you need to be mentally and emotionally prepared as well. It will be taxing on you; he will need your support totally, especially should he consider seeking therapy. If he notices that you are not strong, more than likely, he will revert and things will be as they've been.

    I apologize for the length and I hope this helps.

    Your in my thoughts and prayers, as is your friend.

    Always,
    bb
     
  20. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    Thank you BB

    That has given me the courage to bring my own experience up.This thread was enlightening to me. I am so sorry to hear that so many people have experienced this type of ugliness. I too was the victim of sexual assault . It happened ten years ago and I can remember it like it was today. The perpetrator was a "friend". I know I joke around here on LPSG, but I am really quite conservative and do not dress at all provocatively. I am lucky that the person did not take my virginity (even though he tried) The thing that made it so horrifying is that I am 5"4" and this person was 6'6" and some change. I typically do not go to men's domiciles, but this evening I happened to go with this person to his home to "pick up his car" on the pretense of riding together to another event where we were to meet other friends. We never made it.I came into his place and sat down on the sofa because it was very hot outside. The next thing I knew I was on the floor with my clothing being pulled off me. I remember saying "stop" over and over again to no avail. I remember experiencing everything as if it were happening to someone else and I were looking on. He cried and apologized as he drove me home . I gained 40 lbs after this event, and was monitored for heart palpitations(later I learned they were panic attacks) I began wearing dark baggy clothing and avoided many of the things I had previously enjoyed.I did not report this because this person was known to me as well as other friends. The most hurtful response was that of my mother and the person I was dating at the time. My Mom kept asking me what had I done to provoke this. I was never so angry at her in my life. But I can not fault her this was the old school thinking that the woman must have done something to provoke it .Especially since the guy was such a "nice person" . She never forgave him however. The larger assault to me I think came in the form of the man I was dating at the time and had been dating for years. When I told him what had happened to me, he burst out laughing and said " Little miss goody goody? " He proceeded to mock me imitating what he thought I probably had said to this man. He said things that to this day I will never forget or forgive that were totally unjustified. He ended by saying "this is what all of you women say" . I was totally devastated. Needless to say we stopped seeing one another.I think he had probably just begun seeing someone else and used this as an excuse to break up with me. I was so hurt, angry and upset that it sent me spiraling into a depression. I did not by my own choice date for years after that . If this ever happens to some one you know or care about please do not respond in the way that either of these individuals did. It is devastating to the victim and it only helps them to feel even worse about the situation.

    Naughty
     
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