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Hate myself for what happened when I was 3

Discussion in 'Rape and Abuse' started by Gingerdread, Dec 4, 2017.

  1. Gingerdread

    Gingerdread New Member

    How do you recover from sexual abuse at a young age? I was 3 when it happened and I have always hated myself for as long as I can remember. I grew up knowing I was dirty and disgusting. Strangely I now base my worth on how men view me. Shouldn't it be the opposite? I feel like any man who rejects me or treats me badly is just proving that I'm worthless and don't deserve to be loved, or to be treated with respect. I was 17 when I first told anyone about the abuse (Ironically to the boyfriend who was emotionally and physically abusing me at the time) but I still feel as if I can't move past it. I can't get past feeling as if the abuser when I was 3 could tell how much of a bad person I was inside and that's what made him do it. I'm 32 now and right now I can't see any way out of the black ditch I seem to be in. If I've suffered this way for 29 years, I can't face the idea of suffering for another 29. The only way I can think of stopping the voices in my head telling me how repulsive I am is to kill myself. I just wish I had a method because I've failed at suicide twice before just like I fail at everything else.
    Lara_C likes this.
  2. may71

    may71 Well-Known Member

    A three year-old doesn't deserve to be abused in any way, least of all sexually. Absolutely no sane, decent person would say that any three year-old would deserve to be abused ever. Your abuser was a twisted monster, a person who dealt with the sickness of their own heart by taking it out on an innocent child. Maybe you were made to feel to blame by your abuser for your abuser's crimes, but that is simply another way that your abuser mistreated you.

    I don't know if you've tried therapy or going to a survivor's support group, but that might help you to realize that you were not to blame for your abuse.
  3. Petal

    Petal SF dreamer Staff Member Safety & Support SF Supporter

    Hi there @Gingerdread welcome to SF.

    I am so sorry for what you went through, no child should have to go through that. I'm curious at to whether reporting the abuser would give you any ''closure''. I am a child rape victim too and let me tell you that therapy has helped me so much realise that it was not my fault and in your case it was in no way your fault. Do you think you might have post traumatic stress disorder? You deserved to be loved, screw how men view you, its how you view yourself is what is important. CBT really helped me so I suggest you try it too. No more suffering - help is here and out there. We care about what you are going through and with every negative you'll always find a positive if you look hard enough. You can and will get better, bless you x
    may71, Lara_C and Gingerdread like this.
  4. Gingerdread

    Gingerdread New Member

    Thank you so much for your reply. I was dreading reading it but it's actually lovely. I probably do have PTSD. I've tried counselling before but it has never helped. I can talk about what happened in a detached way but I can't be emotional about it in front of people I don't know. Even with my best friend it's a bit different but I still Just make jokes about it because I'm unable (or perhaps not prepared to) be vulnerable. I can't report it because I don't know who he was. I'd probably not recognise him now. The ex boyfriend at the time told his mum without my permission, who in turn told my mum over the phone. But she told my mum "don't worry, she's probably just making it up for attention." This woman was a police officer in the women and children's department. I only found out last year that she said I was probably lying. Just as well because I'd have been utterly devastated that anyone would think that of Me, especially considering I'd only just told one person for the first time, and suddenly 3 people knew within 24 hours! Talk about not being able to trust anyone. I've recently started self harming again and I have the worst scars I've ever had. Things just seem to be getting worse instead of better.
    Lara_C likes this.
  5. Gingerdread

    Gingerdread New Member

    Logically, I know this. If I think about this happening to anyone else as a young child, I know it's all the abuser and absolutely not the child's fault. But since its about Me, then I must be the problem. I don't know why. I don't think of me being an innocent child, I think of how disgusting I was to let him away with it and never tell anyone. Which is weird because then when I see photos of me as a small cute blonde kid, I don't see the person I remember. That kid looks innocent but I know I wasn't, so I can't connect them as being the same person
    Does that make any sense?
  6. brightlight

    brightlight SF Supporter

    Hi Gingerbread and welcome
    There is a way to change how you are feeling by changing your mind and the way you are thinking. I was abused from age 3 or 4, and I hated myself for over twenty years, but hate is alien to me now. It's not all plain sailing still going through grief and sadness after a breakup, but the hate is gone.
    Can I ask you a couple of questions.
    What is the happiest memory you have among all the dark sad ones? And do you have any spiritual beliefs. How does the word surrender sit with you. And who or what do you or did you ever love.
    There is a way out, it's a process of change, it takes time and effort but the fact that you are here asking for help is the first and most important step, your willingness to change.
    Love and Light
    A couple of poems for you

    Lara_C likes this.
  7. kyledaanxiouskid

    kyledaanxiouskid New Member

    your not alone here, i have been through rape and i understand your feelings, I do agree with the other users in saying that you probabley have ptsd, the fact that you also now look at pictures of you at that age and dont connect as you feel like it s your fault and disgusted with yourself is a response common to these situations. i blamed myself after the incident in which i was raped and it a tough hole to dig yourself out of, i figured out that all the blame and contempt i held to myself was all in my mind and and i had to pack it all away otherwise i was gonna find mysellf in a hole i couldnt dig myself out of. try talking to someone you really really trust about it, it doesnt have to be or in a way in my opinion should be a shrink. dont get me wrong shrinks are great and i have the utmost respect for them, my mom is one actually but it should be a really good friend, just hang with them, get out and do things with them and find projects to do that they will support you in. since what happend to me i found comfort in some friends, i have gotten really good at things i had not previously even though of that i could be good at. currently i am working to become eligible to become an officer in the USAF as a pilot or pararescue and also study hard so i can eventually major in criminal psychology and and hopefully become an fbi hostage negotiater after the air force, never give up hope or blame your self as there was nothing you could have done. we may be total strangers to you but we are here for you and i am here most of the time if you want to send me a message and talk.
  8. Dottie

    Dottie Public Access

    No one deserves to be raped at all. Period. But a three-year-old cannot be evil, or bad. They're just not capable yet. I have a nephew who is almost three and he just isn't even really capable of being mean, let alone an all-around bad person. You did nothing wrong, and could not have done anything at all to "instigate" rape. These things you're telling yourself are poison. They are the poisonous thoughts of someone who has, unfortunately, been absolutely traumatized and is unable to resolve it.

    You could never have done anything to deserve this.

    Try to remember that. All the supportive and loving things you think or say about other rape survivors apply to you, too.

    I know how easy it is to forget that.

    It seems to me like you've been traumatized and are exhibiting symptoms of PTSD. Do you think it'd be worth it to look into therapists who specialize in treating PTSD, and/or specifically PTSD in childhood sexual abuse victims?
  9. Cherished Gal

    Cherished Gal New Member

    My heart breaks for you that you have had to deal with so much evil in your life. You was not made for this and your direction in life is still out there you just need to find the way to follow it. You are not alone in this, there has been others fighting the after effects of abuse. I have been reading articles on children and abuse (google it) so many are looking for help with this. Also there is an organization called <mod edit - guidelines>
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 7, 2017
  10. SofiaLisbon

    SofiaLisbon Well-Known Member

    Hey Gingerdread.
    I was close friends with someone that was also abused at 3 years old and I guess the feeling never goes away. She also dealt with feelings of being worthless and low self esteem. I remember that for some reason she was an easy target for guys that didn't have the best intentions, or were manipulative, abusers, etc, like they could tell she would be an easy target for them, which was not great to see as a friend.
    Its awful what happened with your ex-bf mother. I didn't understand why would he tell her right away. And why would she call your mother saying that you were probably lying. Tbh they seem like really mean people, its like they didn't like to see you in a position of victim and so they rushed to vilify you.
    Also if you ex-bf was abusive, I dont believe he told his mother the story in the best light to you. But hes an ex-bf so thats good, hopefully you don't have to see them anymore.
    If someone told me they were abused at 3 years old, I would believe them. This is why its great these Harvey Weinstein stories came to light, because people are starting to believe the victims and to put them first, its like sexual abuse and harassment are finally considered a huge crime. I know this probably doesn't make you feel better, but if you were a celebrity and you had thousands of followers on twitter for example, and you posted your story, you would have thousands of people liking your post and giving you strength.
    Next time you feel down please come to the forum and try to talk to someone, maybe it will ease the pain, talking to someone. And don't think about your ex-bf and his mother, they are bullies probably making someone else's life miserable right now, but I believe in karma and hope they'll get what they deserve one day.
  11. Tom 57

    Tom 57 New Member

    Hi, I was raped by a Catholic priest whe n I was 7 years old. That memory stayed buried for 50 years. W he n the memory came back to me, my first reaction was to hunt him down and kill him. But he died 20 years earlier. Since then, I'm not sure what to think. Other than it's the past and so what. But I look back on my life and see the detriment but, it's the past and so what.
  12. may71

    may71 Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear this Tom.

    It makes me so sad and so angry that there's so much abuse of children in the world

    Have you tried seeing a therapist about this? Do you think it might help?