Uh Oh!

imageI slapped each one  of my children once, a total shock to me!

My eight-month old baby girl crawled on the kitchen floor while I stood at the sink washing dishes.  I felt her tiny hands as she pulled up on the back of my leg.  I was enjoying the feel of their sweet softness as I dried my hands to pick her up.  Before I got turned around, I felt the painful sting of a wasp on the back of my leg.  Reflexively, I slapped at it.  My baby screamed out!  The sting I’d felt was her sharp new teeth piercing my tender flesh.  I was horrified to released I’d slapped her.  I can still hear her heartbreaking screams when I recall that moment.  I’ve never been so devastated, before or since, especially when she pulled away as I tried to comfort her.

I worked as a dialysis nurse, taking regular call.  One night, about eight-thirty, I got called in.  I told Bud and the kids goodbye and gathered my things on the way to the car.  As I turned the key, a psychotic screamer grabbed me from behind.  The knuckles of my right hand connected with teeth.  My ten-year-old son howled and grabbed his bleeding mouth.  He’d slipped out ahead of me and hidden in the back seat, thinking how much fun it would be to scare me.  We both got a big surprise!

Lissy’s Heartbreak

Lissy, a tiny black-haired girl came to Vacation Bible School with her cousin Judy the summer I was ten.  I immediately warmed to her, though she was so shy she’d only talk to her cousin.  She and her mother had come to spend the summer with her Uncle Joe and his family.  I didn’t see Lissy again until August when Mother spent a few days in the hospital delivering my youngest sister. 

Lissy was Mother’s roommate.  I was almost totally ignorant of anything to do with sex, having only accrued a bit of misinformation at that point, but I did catch on that there was a big secret about Lissy.  I overheard Lissy’s mother talking to the doctor, “She wouldn’t start, and she wouldn’t start, but when she finally did, she wouldn’t stop.”

Lissy was crying and wouldn’t answer the doctor’s questions.  I never saw her again.

Mother sent me out before I heard any more.  I felt bad for Lissy, but was intrigued.  Knowing I’d learn nothing more, I sequestered that information in my mind, hoping I’d understand later.  Long after I was grown, I remembered to ask Mother about it.  She remembered well.  Little Lissy had suffered a miscarriage and was admitted with massive blood loss.  She was only eleven.

 

Who Profits from Child Abuse?

Re logged from Artby Robert Goldstein. We must speak for children

Art by Rob Goldstein

Flyers san Francisco
Anger is a powerful and potentially cleansing emotion.

Or it can make one feel so sick with self loathing that it expresses itself in para-suicidal behaviors.

Anger wants to know why it’s there…

Nothing in the present justifies this degree of anger.

And the truth remains too horrible to fully contemplate.

So the anger scrutinizes Second Life or Flickr, or my partner, or former co-workers, or some emotionally numb accountant that crunches numbers at an HMO for a living and who has already lost his soul to fear.

None of the above is toxic enough to incite the enraged sense of injustice that lodges in my heart as an adult survivor of childhood rape.

The rape of a child is a moral offense so grave that it corrupts everyone involved, including the child, who must distort his perceptions of reality to accommodate the attempted homicide of his soul.

And…

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Hear No Evil

Warning:  Triggers for victims child evilsexual abuse.

Betsy was overweight,unkempt, and shunned by the other kids. “Everybody” knew she “did” it with Jimmy in his barn whenever he wanted to.  She didn’t deny it, even though he called her a pig.  When the home-economics teacher stepped out of class one day, Betsy told us her step-daddy got in bed with her whenever her parents had a fight.  We were all repulsed, thinking she was “talking dirty.”  He was known to be an alcoholic, frequently drunk in public. She told us he beat the whole family.  She frequently bore bruises.   None of us reported it to anybody.  I was disgusted, avoiding her like the plague.  Wild horses couldn’t have dragged that story out of me. Becky’s step-father despised her for her illegitimacy.  The couple had  two younger girls and a boy together. ,Who knows if they suffered the same abuse as Becky didcrying child 2

Life went on.  I heard Betsy married and had children. Years later, she did prison time for molesting boys in her neighborhood.  Who knows how many children were hurt?  By the time she came out of prison, she was in very poor health, living out her life with her mother and a different step-father.  What a shame no one was there for this sad child early on, including me.