Friday, February 21, 2014

3 years gone... and I've found compassion

My father has been in the hospital this winter. I only know this because my sisters broke the "Don't talk about our parents to me and about me to them" code. Heart trouble does that to people. What surprised me was the lack of "about fucking time" or "serves him right" epitaph that should have left my lips. I am the angry sister, most days of the week, so hearing Dad was going to get a pacemaker, probably, and not feeling righteously dignified by his poor health was a very eye-opening look into how I've changed since last year.

Don't get me wrong, I hold no sentimentality toward my malevolent patriarch. My parents were abusive pieces of garbage that were desperate to cling to a dogma and spiritual lifestyle so much that they exposed their children to rapists and liars, even allowing their own child to be raped and doing nothing about it.  I was recently accused of being blasé about abuse and the fact that this happened. I just want to ask, what is the correct way for a 7 year old to out her sister's rapists, their father, the clanhead, and the elders that covered it up and quit being a part of cult?  It wouldn't do me any good now, but it would be interesting to know how other people would handle that. I'm just wondering how people feel that abused children should handle being abused? Because if I did anything my father didn't agree with, I would have been flung around like a ragdoll and hit until I pissed myself and he only stopped because his jeans were wet. At what point should we lay everyone to blame for happened to us? At what point can I condemn other people who were children just like me, for choosing to ignore it?

That's what's changed for me. I will always abhor the elders. I will always want to throw up when I see George's mugshot. I will always wonder how many abused kids have compartmentalized their experiences in order to try to find peace.
I will not lash out at other people for not getting it. I will not use my anger to try to get other people to see things the way that I do.

Somewhere in this last year, I found some sense of compassion and respect for the youth. Even the youth that know about the Foibles article and are so emotionally retarded they can't even say what it said. They cannot even talk about how their parents knew the accusations and said nothing.  They cannot begin to hold their parents negligent in the least, and complicit at worst for what is contained therein.

Those are the things that I did. I responded in a very definitive way after reading Foibles. Other people aren't me, and they're not responding the same. What can I do about that? I don't know. But, I do know that I can allow them their opinion, respect it, and not allow it to rattle me and make me feel differently about my choices.

Do I feel bad, Oh Anonymous One, for not leaving the cult and continuing to be a part of it after what my sister and best friend went through? Yes. Thank you for trying so hard to make me feel like a piece of shit about it. Success is in your corner. What more could I have done? I ask myself that often. I don't have the right answers. The fact of their rapes and our continued abuse by our parents was such a pervasive truth in our lives, it was almost like background noise. Maybe you can't imagine it. I bet you can't. It wasn't even the elephant in the room, it was the painting on the walls, almost the sheetrock itself. There was no point that this abuse was surprising to me, because there was no time that it didn't exist.

Does that make you sick? Yup, it should. I makes the adult non-cult me feel horrible. But that's what it was like. So watching them continue to be a part of the cult, into adult years, what was I going to say about that? What was I going to do?  In what way would my behavior not have been abhorrent to those anonymous's that didn't grow up in abuse and a cult-mentality, what way could I have been different?

You know what I did do, I supported them. Pnina and I went through a lot of shit together. We were thick as thieves, we grew apart, and we came back together. She is still my best friend because I have always supported her. Always. My sister and I have a lot more shit to wade through, family being a cumbersome entanglement, and we still talk to one another. We have found a way to find peace with one another. We have a relationship and we are moving ahead. And when she was unable to talk about what happened, I took up the mantle for her, because it's what she needed. She needed to know it wasn't all in her head. And when people started victim shaming people who have been raped, I was right there, on the front lines, not standing up for that bullshit. Because I love them, and no one deserves to be made to feel like that.

But three years out, I'm not seeing villains where there aren't any. I'm not calling people to carpet who are still trying to find their own way. I not screaming at people who don't know how to respond to all this because it will completely unseat their own reality.  Somewhere, surprisingly, I have found a compassion for these people and found the ability to give them respect, and let them have their own opinions.

I'd like to think that doesn't negate what has happened in the cult. I'd like to think that it's me finally learning to choose my battles.  I'd like to think that no longer painting everyone as the bad guy, is a huge emotionally mature step for a person who has been emotionally stunted due to years of abuse. It should not minimize anyone's story, and change their feelings or attitudes. It's my coming out of this cycle of letting the cult run my life.  It used to do so by being cornered by adults that pretended to be well intentioned, then later with the blog, and trying to out them, and trying to send the Foibles article to every youth I know, and being the first person to say, there has been abuse, I have been abused. These abuses were ignored, and we know they were.   I put so much energy into that. So much. You don't even know. Even when I wanted to stop, I felt I had to keep going until it was done. I pushed myself to the breaking point. Now I'm done. I have nothing left to add. There's nothing else I can do that would be healthy for me. If I hear any inkling of kids being abused now, of rapes, the authorities are on my speed dial. I'm not going to just fucking blog about it. I take that shit fucking seriously.  But I'm not hearing anything anymore, because I'm out.

That's where I'm living my life now. I'm out. I'm not 7 years old wondering what to do about the bad guys. They are pieces of garbage. In my mind, it's time for me to be 31 years old, love my kid and my husband, and a build a life that has nothing to do with elitist assholes from long island who have funny ideas about religion, the after life, and survival.

Wishing you all the best, don't rape anyone, and don't beat your kids.



  1. Of course the passing of the seed is still going on. Otherwise, who will get the righteous souls in guf?

  2. i do not respect the lying, the deceiving, the manipulation and general lovelessness of these people.

  3. There may be exceptions but they are probably the ones in the outer circles. The more inner the circle the uglier they are.

  4. You are not alone Freckle Face. There are many who have suffered abuse who have not given their testimony yet. Shalom was broken many years ago.