My Second Battle With My Monster. This One Is For My Freedom!
How do you start a story about a truly sensitive subject, a subject that traditionally lives in layers and layers of secrecy? This is the question I’ve been asking myself as I journeyed to reassemble the pieces of the past that I buried years ago to process, grieve, and fuel my actions in a positive direction. The only answer I can come up with is to just do it. Put it out there and be completely honest.
It is a difficult story to tell, one that’s taken me forty-three years to process and fully own. Even now when I am ready to stand on the mountain top and scream it for all to hear, I need to temper myself because my story will have a profound effect on others. I learned a long time ago that child molesters continue to abuse long after the physical abuse ends.
For me, the seven years of molestation I endured as a child was no match for the suffering and pain I would feel the second time around when I became a father and my monster came knocking again. This time he was not only fucking with me, he had his sights on my family. My kids were about to become his victims too.
My monster was a father, grandfather, and great-grandfather when he passed away thirteen years ago. He died shortly after the birth of my oldest child, who is now fourteen. He was a frail old man in his later years and when he died it had been twenty-two years since he last laid a finger on me. At the time of his death, he was eulogized as a good man.
I know because I was in attendance with my wife by my side. We were there because our absence would have been noticed. Not only child molesters lurk in the shadows. So do their victims. My wife tells me it was the hardest thing she ever had to do. To sit at his funeral while a monster was remembered as a kind and decent man.
As far as I know, my wife and I were the only people in attendance who had any idea the monster he was. But truthfully, I really don’t know. After all, most victims rarely talk about their child molestation. If they are like me, they buried that shit a long time ago and hoped to never discuss it again. The problem is that burying it is unhealthy and limits our ability to process, accept, and truly heal.
Opening Up About My Battles
I have recently decided to share my story with those closest to me. It is a work in progress but as a fifty-year-old man, people in my life are finally discovering who the fuck I really am. They never knew I had such a big secret and they had no idea it fueled me so deeply. For one member of my family, my story was especially devastating.
Last year I decided to tell my mother. She learned I was molested under her roof by a man she invited into our home. I will never forget the sadness in her eyes when she realized she failed to protect her boy.
My Second Battle With My Monster
I am not sharing the story with these important people in my life to voice my anger or point fingers. I decided to come out of the shadows to prepare people like me to win their second battle with their monster. The battle in our mind that erupts when we have children of our own.
It is at that time when we finally realize the true innocence we lost at the hands of our monster. We begin to relive the crime through the window of our children. Only this time, we have the mind of mature adults. Children are much more resilient and can adapt to their environment. Mature adults do not respond as well. We become acutely aware of what is happening this time around.
I was growing angry and becoming disconnected from those whom I loved the most. Had my battle ended there it would have been tragic! My monster rising out of the ashes to crush my hopes and dreams…AGAIN! I couldn’t let it happen. Here’s what I have to say to those monsters. Go fuck yourself!
I made it through my second battle with my wife and three kids by my side. It wasn’t always pretty, but fortunately, success can be built on our failures. Survivors of child molestation are strong motherfuckers. We might not always feel that way, but make no mistake, we are stronger than we accept credit for.
We made it through our first battle. Many of us have scars that run deep as a result but somehow we made it through. We are still here and we have the power of choice moving forward.
For a number of years, I thought my child molestation was the worst thing about me. I was so ashamed of myself. As the years passed, I grew to accept it, and eventually, I understood that I was not to blame. But, by the time I realized this, the series of events that happened over my years of physical abuse were buried deep out of self-preservation. Doing so was necessary for my survival at the time.
My Life At Sixty-Percent
I moved on to build the best life I could after my first battle with my monster. I took the long way around my abuse but somehow I arrived on the other side. By all accounts I had everything. I was a devoted husband, a loving new father, a good friend, and an accomplished businessman. The only person I shared my secret with during those years was my wife who I told when we were dating.
Looking back, I didn’t tell her because I felt empowered. I told her because I still viewed myself as damaged goods and thought she should know before she put more time and energy into our evolving relationship. This is a great example of the deep-rooted, poor self-confidence issues that often plague victims of child molestation.
Luckily for me, my wife had a much higher opinion of me than I did for myself. Together we built a decent life for ourselves. I had some self-destructive tendencies but I was functional and caring.
I was operating at sixty percent and that was where my life was headed. A good life on the outside with unresolved conflict on the inside.
If that is how my story would have unfolded, my life would have been tarnished by missed opportunities. Nothing in life is sadder than wasted talent.
About seven years ago, I started to dig up all of those buried memories of my child molestation. The timing was not a coincidence. My oldest child was about to go into first grade, the same grade I was in when my father died and my monster appeared. It was through the eyes of my oldest daughter, that I realized what true innocence looked like. It was then that I began to fully realize the crime that was committed against me.
I discovered how the people put in my life to protect me had failed. I finally understood what I lost and it fucking hurt like no other pain I had felt before. The worst part of it all was my monster was back from the dead and he was robbing me of quality time with my kids. While I had developed a high threshold for pain over my years, it was no match for the pain I felt when I looked in my daughter’s eyes and saw my molestation. My monster came back to rob me of everything I held as holy in my life.
It was the beginning of my second battle.
I began to fall apart. I needed an oasis and I found it in alcohol. It was a temporary solution to my escalating issue. Of course, alcohol doesn’t help anything. It only dulls the pain for a short period of time and leaves an even larger mess to clean up in the end.
During the next six years, I fought the hardest battle of my lifetime, the one going on inside my head. I was drinking and eating more than ever. I grew to three hundred and fifty pounds. Every night I would promise myself I would make a change, but the next day I would repeat the cycle. You can only lie to yourself so many times before you destroy your self-confidence.
All those years of forging my self-confidence were slipping away at his hands again. Imagine taking five hundred thousand steps forward over forty years of slowly healing from your first battle only to be kicked one million steps back in one glance of your little child. That was my hell.
While my experience with my daughter hurt, it was a critical beginning for my true healing. I didn’t have forty years at my disposal to take the long journey around my issue anymore. I learned it was time to build a bridge to a better place. No longer would I travel around my issue. The best way to build something sustainable was to assemble a larger community around my molestation.
I found help to deal with my issue. I shared my story with a few others in addition to my wife. My shares were strategic in nature. My small team and I started building my bridge as my memories became clearer and more vivid in my mind. For me, my oldest daughter serves as my bridge to healing.
As my team and I were building my bridge, I began to discover the difficult road I traveled as a little boy. It was like an out-of-body experience. I began to see the little boy’s innocence and vulnerability. I could see his optimism and smile. I could see his kindness, trust, and love. I saw his sadness, confusion, shame, and guilt. I saw him trying to be the man of the house and the protector of his mother and little brother. I saw his self-hate and anger but I also saw his hope.
During this time my son, who is three and a half years younger than my daughter, was growing before my eyes. My boy looks like me, acts like me, and has a huge heart like me. His smile and his beautiful outlook on life can light up a room. His sweetness and gentle nature remind me of who I was as a little boy.
I needed to remember who I was as a little boy to fully understand his journey. It was time for a new sunrise for that little boy. My son represents that sunrise. My sunrise was a critical part of my healing.
My Warrior Princess
Even with my self-development, my monster was still alive and well in my head for the next six years. I had critical parts of healing in place but I was missing one. I was racing against time. All of the old memories and my realized losses were taking their toll. My mental battle was physically killing me this time. My doctors prescribed four medications for blood pressure, heart palpitations, high blood sugar, and high cholesterol.
If I didn’t make a change soon I was destined for an early departure. It was a death sentence I knew all too well with the early exit of my father. Sometimes you need a little light to show you the way.
Our baby girl was born in 2019. Unlike our other two children who were planned pregnancies, this little bundle of joy was a surprise. I was forty-eight years old when she was born and my life was fucking flashing before my eyes. The love you feel when you become a parent is unparalleled. The clarity you can find is amazing.
I knew my time was now. No one was coming to save me. The best community could only provide a foundation and support. Only I could save myself. It was time to end my second battle. My family was depending on me. I wasn’t sure exactly how to get it accomplished but I knew I had to take action.
My Life At One-Hundred Percent
I immediately went to work and I haven’t looked back since. I’ve made progress by leaps and bounds in a little over a year. I’ve taken myself even further than I imagined possible and I am only fucking beginning. I found my missing forty percent and I am applying it daily. I built a better mousetrap.
I am expanding my community regularly. I am reinforcing my bridge and celebrating my sunrise daily. Most importantly, I discovered the final component to true healing and empowerment. I am comfortable in my skin and started taking complete control over my choices in life. I have become the ultimate warrior since my little girl arrived. I was always a fighter but I needed to dig deeper and her arrival was timely.
My little girl will forever be my princess warrior. She gave me the laser focus to gain control over my choices. Armed with the process I used to finally establish control after all these years, I possess a deadly weapon to use against monsters.
Now I am enjoying my best life. There is no pain and self-destruction anymore. My monster now answers to me. He only exists in my head because I want to use him and my experience to help others. I have total control over my actions and I am completely comfortable in my skin. No more tears and insecurities. No more self-hate. I only feel strength.
My mind is strong and my body is transforming as a result as well. I’m gaining muscle and have lost eighty-two pounds in one year and a half. My doctors are amazed at my progress. They have taken me off of the prediabetes medication and have lowered my daily doses of blood pressure, cholesterol, and heart medications. I am in the best physical condition I can remember.
This healing has now given me clarity on a new level. It has given me my freedom!
For years I’ve asked, “Why me?” Why did my father die so young? Why did I have to grow up without a dad involved in my life? Why was I the kid who was molested? Why did I let him do that to me for so long?” I finally have the answers.
My journey has led me to physical and mental freedom. It has armed me with the tools to help empower others. It is time for me to use my story to help others accept theirs. It is time for us ALL to heal. OUR struggle is OUR strength. We can heal and I’m ready to share how I did it.
I am ready to be the guy I was destined to be. This is my story. How can the worst thing that ever happened to you be the exact thing that shapes what you are most proud of? How can you truly heal from such a horrific life experience?
Your struggle becomes your strength. With that nothing can stop us.
I look forward to our collective sharing and growth together as thrivers!
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The Sunrise Warrior
I am a man living with his family in the suburbs of a metropolitan city. I have five bicycles in my shed, a basketball net in the backyard, and two vehicles in the driveway including a kick-ass minivan. I am a husband, father, son, brother, and friend. I am a business owner recognized as a leader in my field. I am an entrepreneur in search of opportunity in each situation. I am a passionate volunteer for a number of worthy causes. Read More