Thanks to Jeremy for being brave enough to write this post for us and to raise awareness on issues of male sexual abuse. Feel free to reach out to him on twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/jak_jeremy
I am a male survivor of longterm (10years) childhood sexual abuse. I am straight, 35 years old I disclosed publicly at 24. It was done on impulse when I saw the abuser at a public place with a young boy. Most straght male survivors of same-sex abuse don’t disclose for 25-30 years if at all. I know a few straght male survivors, all of the ones I know did not disclose until they were well established in life.
Most are aged from 40 all the way up to 72. I can fully understand their hesitation, talking at 24 had done more to damage my reputation than to damage my abuser’s reputation. I would have sought justice, but with the current limitation laws, that was not an option. Talking when I did, the way I did spooked my abuser who apparently was unfamiliar with the limitation laws. So he did what cowards do, he ran and left the state. This proved beneficial in two profound ways, it meant I no longer had to worry about running into him and how i might react when that happened.
It also meant I did for that child what no one did for me, I don’t know if he was abusing that child, but I know if he was I stopped it, and if he was still in the grooming phase I prevented the abuse. Most people who sexually abuse/molest children are not pure pedophiles, meaning they have and enjoy consensual sexual relationships with adults the vast majority of abusers identify as straght regardless of the sex/gender of their victims. Where as a pure pedophile, will see sex with adults as gross and disgusting. They are only attracted to children. if they do engage in sexual activities with consenting adults it’s only to erase suspicion ,appear normal or it in some way will give them access to a child. One might carry on a false romantic relationship with a parent of the intended victim to gain access.
My situation, is quite complex my abuser was/is a pure pedophile who self identified as gay. He wasn’t gay though what he had was more of a mental illness than a sexual orientation. Add all these factors together, and even among other male survivors i am kinda an outsider, I’m kinda alone. Most of the male survivors, I have met identify as gay. Straight survivors won’t talk about it openly fortunately the internet is filling many gaps for us. (http://www.1in6.org) which went online in 2010, (3years after I disclosed) broke new ground and allowed many of us to tell our stories anonymously, eliminating much of the shame and the soul staining stigma that we have unfortunately gotten used to. It’s not like this is a new phenomenon it’s been happening to boys as long as it has been happening to girls.
The Catholic church and Penn state have opened some eyes, however when those young boys become men, society tells them to man up and shut up. It’s even worse when a man is sexually assulted as an adult. I know some adult male survivors and i honestly don’t know which is worse for them the sexual violence or the way others responded to them and or their stories. With some men calling them “Beta males” or “Cucks” and many women reminding them that 98% of *reported* rapes are against Female victims with 2% of victims being male. Another thing I have noticed is many women say all men are the problem and even go as far as to say “Kill All Men”, “Men are trash”, “Men are disposable” and “All men rape.” Not only are these statements hurtful and factually inaccurate, but they also put many male survivors in the same box with the men who abused them. I once said, “I wish my abuser had been a woman.”
I guess to men abused as boys by women this may be offensive however at the time I believed it would lessen the stigma. Young male victims of female perpetrators face different challenges than I face, they are kinda praised for being prepubescent victims of female offenders. Adam sandler even made a movie called “That’s my boy” which highlighted and glorified this monumental abuse of trust and power. Sandler’s character is far from a well developed adult, he is clearly addicted to many substances and has co-occurring disorders and or mental illness.
Yet he refuses to admit his teacher did anything wrong or immoral, there could be some truth there. It seems Sandler’s character is too fucked up to realize he is so fucked up. Male survivors of female offenders are not something I know a whole lot about but I did not want to leave them out.
In crimes of this nature, much of society seems to side with the abuser this seems especially true when both the victim and the offender are male, atleast that has been my reality. The kindest women in my abuser’s family says I am lying, the most vile say I wanted it. Lost many friends when I came forward more so than my abuser, I had a girlfriend leave me after I told her. Once word got out I was called a faggot to my face and or behind my back people treated me different like they were afraid of me or something one side of my family (fathers side) kinda disowned me my mother blamed me for not telling. The story had expired so when I talked I did it online not to get justice for me but to label him for what he was and help that child, it had that effect and that made it worth it.
His male family members on the other hand believe me, maybe they know that no one wants this to be their truth, or maybe they too think I was a willing participant. I thought that for awhile myself but now i realize I was a child and as such I could not consent. My abuser’s brothers, won’t necessarily agree with me, but they won’t allow their sons to be alone with him which tells me they either believe me or they already knew. Considering he has had atleast 8 victims in the past 25years i am inclined to believe it is the latter.
Of all his victims, only one has went public, only one has talked to the police, only one has sought therapy, only one has not been in prison. I am that one and, I’m not sure if i am the strongest of his victims or the weakest. I don’t have all the answers that I would like to have, and i probably never will but the one thing that has became abundantly clear is that silence is not the solution it’s the problem.
If you want to share your story, feel free to get in touch with https://1in6.org
You aren’t alone.