Easter thoughts

What  I am about to say is going to sound very not Christian.  It is just how I feel and once I explain readers will understand.

Shockingly, I HATE Easter.  It has nothing to do with God and Jesus, but everything to do about my abuser and rapist.

In the church that I grew up in, we did a HUGE Easter play.  Hundred, probably thousands of people would come to see the play.  It was moving and so powerful.  Basically, it was the play version of the “Passion of Christ”, but before the movie came out.  It would have probably have gotten awards if anyone of repute had gone.

The casting was what is resounding in my soul all these years later.  It was who they cast as Jesus.  They cast my rapist as Jesus.  So, he would be up in the front playing the most perfect human at church, then go home and molest me.  By this time, he had already raped two people and was well on his way to abusing me. 

So Easter is a hard holiday for me.  The fact that he can deceive so many people is so hard on me.  I can’t wait until God says, “Enough is enough.” I am so glad that the sun is going down, so that today will be over.

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“Morgan is just different”

When we were adopted, we got to change our middle names.  About a month beforehand, all my siblings had their names picked out.  I was struggling to find a name for myself.  One that I could be proud of, because I was going to be stuck with it for the rest of my life.  The thing was, I was like nobody.

All my siblings had other family members they were naming themselves after.  Dean changed his name to our adopted dad’s name.  Patience took after our adopted mom’s name. Breanna named herself after my adopted mother’s biological daughter.  They all made jokes how the name changes fit the kids because they acted just like the person they were named for.  Well, I was just different. 

My difference was always noticed.  I was hard headed and stubborn.  So, I wanted to name myself after someone who was the same.  I looked and looked.  Finally, I found a name.  One that  I am still proud of today. LaShaye, which means, “You have an executive ability, you are a leader. You are moral, balanced, honest and intellectual, and you may attain spirituality. You are wise and practical with an appreciation of beauty. You always think before you act. You are bold, independent, inquisitive and interested in research. You know what you want and why you want it.” That is according to seven reflections website.

However, I was still deemed different.  Different is OK, as long as you are not constantly reminded of it.  It gets offensive to be at family reunions and everyone asks why I didn’t name myself after someone else.  I picked someone who was strong and had a good head on their shoulder. 

I was different because I wanted to leave.  I counted down the days until I could leave.  I hated being there.  For my hate, I got ridiculed.  All my siblings want to put  trailers in my parent’s field and live their with family’s all together.  I thought it sounded like a cult compound.  I wanted to travel, go to college, and experience life outside of them.  That made me different.

Different to them was wrong.  Different was opinionated.  Different was argumentative.  Different was stubborn and hard headed.  Different was dangerous.  Different got punished because we all had to be perfect cookie cut outs of each other.

I mean, being grounded from reading is an example enough of how dangerous different was.  My wanting to leave and get an education was a hard pill for my mom who didn’t complete school because she dropped out to get married.  My inner strength that it took to get through being molested by my uncle and mom just confused them.  My mom did everything she could to break me, but I am unbroken. 

I never really saw my difference as a problem like they did.  When they would joke and pick on me about it, I would comment that at least I was making my own way, I wasn’t following a path someone else made.  I was cutting my own through the wilderness of life. 

To me different was strong.  Different was unique.  Different wanted more than what they thought I should have.  Different stands up for the weak because she knows how if feels when no one does.  Different wants to make the world a better place.  Different wants to love rather than control.  Different is good.  Different is special.

Being different is probably what made me a target to my uncle.  I didn’t fit in my family and he knew that.  He was my confidant.  I told him my secrets, during those few times we were not yelling at each other. Being different drew creeps who knew that I was alone.

I try not to blame my younger self.  I just want to go back in time and wrap my arms around her and tell her that she is strong.  I want to tell her all the things that no one except for her uncle told her.  I want to tell her that she will blossom like a flower in spring.  I want to tell her that being different made her better than them.

Being different showed me that what they were teaching us was a lie.  Being different helped me escape.  Being different made me stronger than anything they could have done.  Being different helped me see that I can make a difference even though they put me through hell for sick pleasures.  Being different makes me better than wanting to be like them. It makes me beautiful and strong.

 

Around the country, there are cases involving police officers accused of attempting to bully victims into admitting they made up their rapes — a not uncommon practice that has fueled “false rape” statistics.

“False rape” is brought up often by men’s rights activists, who generally fear that women — motivated by revenge, or perhaps just regretting sleeping with a man — could use a jury’s sympathy to falsely convict men of rape. But this thinking isn’t limited to MRAs; Heisman winner Jameis Winston’s alleged victim was accused by some in the Florida State community of trying to destroy his career.

But the reality of “false rape” accusations is clear: A woman lying to law enforcement about her assault is both statistically infrequent and difficult to prove. The FBI has called attempts to organize it under one statistic meaningless. There is no formal record of false rape accusations — they do happen, just not often.

False rape statistics

“Rape doesn’t just involve someone with a gun to a woman’s head,” said Michele Decker, a Johns Hopkins professor who wrote commentary for a U.N. report on rape attitudes in six Asian countries. The report found that men would describe actions matching the legal definition of rape — having sex with a woman without consent — but wouldn’t use the word “rape.”

More on rape culture

Here is the thing

The thing about coming forward and telling my story is that people are going to get mad.  Feathers are going to get ruffled and feelings are going to get hurt.  People who thought they knew my parents are going to be shocked.  People who thought they knew the man that raped me are going to be shocked.  I understand that.  I understand wanting to deny it away.  I understand being angry.  I don’t understand attacking the victim.  If you are a victim of sexual assault, you know how hard it is to tell what happened to you.  You know the dread and fear of saying the words.  You know the terror of being blamed.  Why blame another victim who is just trying to tell the world about what happened?

Why lie about rape?  Who even wants to talk about it?  It is like a stigma of our society.  No one even wants to confront it happened.  So, why lie about it? 

 

Always follow your instincts because they are usually right.

When I was 8, I was put in a foster home.  I like to think I had good instincts at that age.  I knew enough to recognize evil when I saw it.     

I am going to give my rapist a name.  He was like an uncle to me, so I will call him Uncle.  

From the moment I meet Uncle, I hated him.  If he walked in a room, I walked out. If he tried to talk to me, I was very rude to him.  If he tried to touch me, I would leave. 

I clearly remember one time when I was 8, being told that I had to go on a date with Uncle and his wife.  I was OK since his wife was going to be there.  We all went to a local restaurant.  I was happily munching along on my food when his wife told me she was done and that she was going to leave me to go to a ballgame with him.  I went ballistic.  I started crying and saying I didn’t want to go with him.  His wife took me back home.  I got a spanking by my foster mom for how I acted. 

There was a time that I was at church and his wife and my mom got together and thought it would be funny to make me hug him.  So they had Uncle hug me and I just held my arms out.  Everyone was laughing except for the two of us.  I was miserable.    I didn’t want him touching me, but my mother allowed him to even though I didn’t want it. 

The problem with my mom making me hug him when I didn’t want too, it started the grooming process.  It showed me that my feelings didn’t matter.  It told me that I couldn’t listen to my instincts. I think that was the day that I started being groomed. 

The turning point for me was when I was 10.  I was taken into my mom’s bedroom and we had a talk. The talk consisted of her telling me that if I didn’t start being nice to him, then she was going to start treating me like I treat him.  Which I think is a stupid idea to do with a foster kid, but it was her idea.  She never once asked my why I felt the way I did or why I didn’t want to be near him.  She just assumed I had no reason.  

After that talk, she walked out of the room and started ignoring me.  If I tried to talk to her, she would walk out of the room or start talking to someone else.  At supper, she wouldn’t even make me a plate.  If I tried to touch her then she would slap my hand away.  She started getting the rest of the family involved in this treatment and I broke. 

The first time I spent time with him was on a four wheeler.  I don’t think any kid could have resisted a ride on a four wheeler.  It could be that I was just crazy and loved them.  My mom told me he was coming down on the four wheeler and that I should go spend time with him.   I reluctantly said I would and as I headed out my mom told me. “Have a good time.” 

I remember those words because on my way out to the field where the 4-wheeler was, I was thinking that I couldn’t have a good time with him that I would just pretend.  Little did I know that was the beginning of our “friendship”.

I would say that Uncle and I were about as good of friends as Tom and Jerry.  Deep down inside, I do struggle with the fact that I thought he and I were friends.  Yes, he did hurt me worse than anyone can imagine, but he was my friend.  Technically, he wasn’t my friend, it was all a ploy to gain my trust, but even with all the anger I still wonder.  

He and I would argue and I would be so disrespectful to him.  His wife would get so tickled at how he and I argued.  She even made jokes that Uncle and I sounded like we were married.  I would always act sick at the thought of having to be stuck with him forever.

There were times when Uncle and I got along.  We would play video games together.  He would tell me stories of when he was my age.  I would ask him advice about guys.  I trusted him over time.  

When I look back I call myself so stupid.  I hate my younger self, but then I realized that I was groomed.  My mom started when she made me hug him and spend time with him.  He groomed me by gaining my trust over the years.  It was little things like taking my side when I was in trouble, reading my poems, telling me stories, buying me presents, and just listening to me.

 But I will say, those times were few and far between.  99% of the time we were fighting like cats and dogs.  Literately, people who were around when I would lite into him would be so shocked, but it was just how it was. 

I think the lesson to be learned from this is, if my parents had just let me be when I was younger, I don’t think I would have ended up raped or molested.  If they had just taken the time to understand that I had a bad feeling about him, instead of pushing me towards this disgusting person, I wouldn’t have gotten hurt.  I wouldn’t have been groomed to be the perfect one for him. The red flags that should have gone up when he would act weird were thrown away by the fact that I had dimmed the nudge of my natural instincts. 

I beg anyone who reads this and has kids, trust them.  Kids are so perceptive to people.  I know watching them ‘hate’ a family member is very hard and maybe to you,humorous.  Trust me when I say there is usually a reason behind how they feel. Whether it makes sense to the adults or not, to them it matters a lot.   Never force a child to hug or kiss someone they don’t want to.  Teach your children to listen to their inner voices when they are around people.  I don’t have children, I am just saying this based on what I wish I was taught.  I know it could have saved me a lot of heart aches in the long run. 

Guilt does a job on each one of us.

It has only been recent that I ever admitted to feeling guilt over what happened to me.  Guilt that i kept it secret.  Guilt because there was “Just something about me” that attracted him.  Guilt for keeping the secret.  Guilt because by keeping the secret it means I am helping him in the long run.

I know I was underage and not responsible for what happened, but if I had done something…..I don’t even want to have these thoughts, but I think it is healthy to question it.  At least to question it to a point.

I never even felt guilty about it.  Once I realized the magnitude of keeping silent, I felt the guilt wash over me.  I used the regular excuses like: I am a victim, I have no control over him, and I was made silent.  Well, no one is making me keep it silent now.  I can’t ‘help’ him hurt others.

According to the law, victims do not have to report rape to the law.  They are not obligated to do it unless they want to.  It has been 3 and half years since my attack and I am finally feeling ready to make a report.  The thought of him being a Sunday School teacher and hurting other kids just makes me sick.  I think I feel guilt knowing the pain it caused me could happen to another.  I can’t live with myself if he hurt another.

So, does anyone who reads this ever wish they had press charges?  Or does anyone who did press charges regret it?  To be honest, I keep saying one thing and thing change my mind.  Like I said earlier, it is the victim’s decision.