A little truth.
This is a break from the holistic posts that I have been posting, but it is something I feel compelled to discuss. This is something I have rarely discussed and actually never even mentioned until I was at my mothers funeral in 2005. I didn’t even remember the details until I was 15 years old. But since I have seen such disgusting things written about Dr. Ford regarding Judge Kavanaugh, I have decided to come forward and tell a little bit about my story.
People have been talking about how he shouldn’t be criminalized for something he did 30 years ago, “why didn’t she come forward before now?,” “Does she have proof?,” etc. This is complete and utter bullshit. Victims of sexual molestation/assault and violence are often left the burden of proof in the eyes of the law and in public opinion. Why is that? Why should they have to prove their pain, their shame and feelings of guilt for something they didn’t ask for? How can they begin to explain the thoughts that have haunted them for years and why should they have to? How is it that boys are still allowed to treat girls as if they are some sort of object as opposed to human beings, then years later, because they have positions of power, they are “good people” and shouldn’t have their lives ruined? FUCK THAT!
I was 5 years old, my sister was 4 and my brother was just an infant. My parents went out to a party and asked a friend of my uncle to watch us. This was nothing out of the ordinary when you are 26 years old and parents of 3 young children. They wanted to go have some fun, I don’t blame them. I was fiercely protective of my sister and brother. I helped this guy change my brothers diapers, showed him how to make his bottles and even helped him find the stuff for dinner that my mom explained was for me and my sister to eat that night. I remember all of these details. I remember the layout of every room in the rental house we lived in on Rte. 83 in Round Lake. It was a farm house with 2 barns, right off the road and just within walking distance to a Zayre store. Yes, I am that old that I remember walking to Zayre, along Rte. 83, holding my mothers hand as semi trucks whizzed by us. I remember it all.
I also remember that night after my brother and sister went to bed, this man took me into the bathroom. He told me he had something to show me. I remember that I was sitting on the edge of the bathtub when he pulled out a Playboy magazine and had me look at the images with him. He explained to me about how these women made him “happy.” He proceeded to take out his penis, he had me touch him and then he made me put my mouth on him. I was 5. I remember asking him if he was “peeing in my mouth?” He replied, “It’s not pee, this is supposed to happen.” I remember every detail that I will spare you more of them at this time. I think this is enough to paint the picture that this was wrong.
After this happened, he told me that I couldn’t tell anyone. If I said “anything to anyone about this, they will take you away from your mom and dad. You don’t want that, do you? People will come and hurt your brother and sister. You don’t want them to die, do you? Of course not. So, this is our secret. Never talk about our secret, ok?” WORD FOR FUCKING WORD… to a 5 year old child that he just sexually molested/assaulted.
I didn’t say a word. For years. My brain would go on to protect me from every detail of that day for years. Then I was 15. My uncle who was his friend was married at this point and living in the same town that we lived in, a block away actually. This piece of shit came to visit them. My uncle called me (knowing nothing of what happened) and told me that he was at their house and he requested to see us, so why don’t we swing by and say hello.
In that moment. In that exact moment… every single memory, every single thing my brain was hiding from me came flooding back. I became sick. I threw up and then I ran. I ran down the road as fast as I could, past their house, down to my friends house. I was unbelievably scared. I was afraid that he was there to do it again, to hurt my family, to tell the it was all my fault, I don’t know why I thought all of it, but my brain was racing. I was terrified. When I got to my friends house I was shaking but I didn’t say anything about what I had going on in my head. I didn’t even know it was called sexual assault or molestation, I just knew that something I had zero recollection of before this day was suddenly vibrant in my 15 year old brain. I couldn’t make it stop.
I certainly wasn’t about to talk about it to anyone. What if I was the reason why this man did this? Did I do something, say something, act in a certain way AT 5 FUCKING YEARS OLD that could have made him do that? Was this my fault? What if it was my fault? Of course, now I know that it was never my fault, I was 5. He was a sick, piece of shit, that probably assaulted and molested more children and women throughout his life.
But again, I didn’t say anything. I continued to live my life with this in my head. Pretending it wasn’t there. My brain doing anything it could to protect me from the full realization of what that event meant and how it truly affected me.
Then in 2005, my mother passed away after a long battle with multiple sclerosis. I had flown up from Alabama and I was emotionally exhausted. Watching my family go through this loss was a lot for anyone to handle.
I was 33 years old at this point.
THAT’S ENOUGH TIME TO…. GET OVER IT, RIGHT?
I was talking with someone and I saw this man walk in the door.
I literally froze. I began to shake, my face felt hot, I didn’t know where to go or what to do. At this point, my husband came over to me and asked what was wrong, apparently it was clear that something was happening to me. I told him and my aunt who was standing by me what the man did to me all those years ago. Not in detail, just what he did, he sexually molested me at 5 years old. It was all I could say in that moment of pure terror.
She went to my uncle and my dad and they calmly walked him out and told him he wasn’t welcome. They told him what I had said and his response was, “She is lying. She was 5, she isn’t remembering it the right way.”
I was lying.
I wasn’t remember it the “right way.”
Just like Dr. Ford. She didn’t come out with this before now. Her details are “inconsistent.” Because she voted Democrat and donated $49 over the years, she is an operative for the Democratic party. It is complete bullshit.
This woman had an experience that shaped how she lived the rest of her life in that one instance. I know what that is like. It happened to me, too. If I had come out about a man that was a doctor, a lawyer, or a judge… this would have been the same reaction towards me. If I had the strength to say this back then, I would have been told I was ruining a “mans life” by discussing what he did to me. However, the man that sexually molested/assaulted me at 5 years old was just a loser. Someone that never made anything of himself in life and he eventually died. He was found days later, in a fashion that was truly fit for him… dead and rotting in his bathroom sitting on the toilet. He deserved every misery that he had in life. He took the mind and innocence of a child.
I have never been able to fully trust men. I have always had this sense of shame and embarrassment that sits in the depths of my soul. I have never been comfortable with who I am as a person because of this. I can’t explain it in ways that anyone who hasn’t been through something will ever understand, but it changes you. But what it doesn’t do, is it doesn’t ever change the fact that it happened. It happened. Regardless of the years between today and the day he did that to me, I still happened. Over the years, I have only told about 4 people, maybe 5. I spared my mom the knowledge of this because I never wanted her to feel guilty or at fault for any of it. I told my dad at her funeral. Never in detail. I never even told my best friend of over 30 years the details, just that it happened. This is the first time. I am 46 and 41 years later, I am talking about it publicly.
And because of how I see people reacting to Dr. Ford, that is why women don’t come forward sooner. Because of the disgusting shit being said about her, the fingers being pointed, the lies, the burden of proof, the denial… this is why.
I wouldn’t have been able to prove shit if I were asked to. I was 5. I didn’t gather evidence when I was being assaulted in that bathroom. Dr. Ford didn’t think to gather evidence when Judge Kavanaugh was assaulting her.
Her memories, my memories, remember it all.
We need to be able to talk about it. Believe it when someone says it happens to them and hold those who are guilty of it responsible. Time is up for people (yes, men and women are guilty of this) who do this to other people.