When I was 15, I was sexually abused.
There. I said it.
Why am I telling you this? Why now?
A couple of reasons: Trying for a baby stirs up all sorts of feelings. It has the power to change radically a woman's perspective. Second, I'm reading this book by Christiane Northrup, M.D., called Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom. Keep in mind that I've only read 15% of it according to my Kindle, so I can't offer a full book review (yet).
My initial, knee-jerk reaction to the book's holistic approach to disease and health, including discussions on vibration, chakras, and so on, was to balk like someone who just swallowed the slimy skin that forms on boiled milk. Ughhh....! What is this wishy-washy, let's-hold-hands-in-a-prayer-circle-and-sing-Kumbaya bullshit?
But then, I really want to have a baby, and recently had a part of my cervix sliced off... and the Clomid my MD prescribed is playing havoc with my cycle (TMI? Between the cystic acne, bouts of sadness, and bloating, I've got my fingers crossed that I won't have to swallow the next two rounds of pills. Oh, did I also mention that Clomid is expensive, and not covered by your private health care plan? On the bright side though, it does have one funny side effect: Near ovulation my labia and clit swell and become extra sensitive -- so much so that I can feel them through my clothes at any time of the day. PC says that I look like my pussy's been pumped with a suction cup!)
You could say that I'm getting desperate. I'm liable to buy that snake oil just in case it actually works. I'm on the verge of believing in miracles.
Back to this book: The main premise, as I understand it so far, is that our emotional state (conscious and unconscious) has the power to impact our health in a big way. True that. If I am stressed out about a deadline, I always feel it in my shoulders or lower back. I also get headaches. However, dealing with emotions I allow myself to feel is easy. I am aware of them, I can pinpoint their source, and I can eventually find a constructive way to remedy the situation.
Unconscious emotions are another story. The feelings I bury in my body because I am too afraid to feel them, the ones that I rationalize instead of experience: These emotions are difficult to access. According to Northrup, they come back to bite us in the form of bodily symptoms. (Keep in mind that she does not claim that sickness is all in our heads; the argument is more subtle than that. Think of it this way: The "mind" inhabits every particle of your body.)
Gaining access to these buried emotions requires reflection, introspection, and the ability to be honest with myself. Ok, here goes!
When I was 14 I became infatuated with my 23 year-old swim team coach. As an adult, he should have known better, but he chose to return my affections instead of maintaining a healthy professional distance. We had an "affair" for close to six months. It only ended because my parents figured it out. My mother confronted him. She came to realize that he was in love with me. She decided not to press charges because his feelings were genuine. More importantly, she was afraid of the impact that a public trial would have on my psyche and reputation.
We never had "sex"; our physical intimacy was limited to making out and him touching my breasts. I had no interest in his cock or having my pussy touched at that age.
Six months after the initial affair ended, he moved to my street. I would run into him regularly. Sometime after my 15th birthday, I went over to his house. I remember making out. He pulled my hand and placed it inside his pants, to stroke his cock. I remember thinking: "The skin is so soft...." Then, out of nowhere, rushing for the door. (I left and never saw him again.)
We stayed in touch by phone without my parents' knowledge until I was 18. It was easier to tell him my feelings than anyone else. He was a confidant, conveniently removed from my life, but always on the fringes. He had told me more than once that when I turned 18, he would marry me. I stopped calling.
For the longest time I always downplayed what happened. "There was no sex," I would tell myself, "so I wasn't really abused." Sure. Whatever. Why is it that I ended up in emotionally destructive relationships for most of my youth (PC being the exception to this rule -- the man is a godsend!) Why is it that I was never really into cocks until I reached my 30s? Hum....
The Attempt at Assimilation
In the last couple of years I have revisited the swim team coach scenario in my own private fantasy world and added new layers of humiliation.... I imagine that he blindfolds me, and tells me that he's going to pretend to touch me as if he were someone else. Then, without my knowledge, he lets a friend of his into the room, who proceeds to lick, finger, and fuck my ass without a condom.... I hear the coach laugh from the doorway as his buddy jizzes inside me.....
Another time I imagine him fucking me in a field, up against his parked car... always from behind. I guess that my perverse humiliation scenarios are a way for me to tell myself that I got fucked?
So there, yes, I admit it. I was abused.
Fuck. I just cried as I read over this. I also realized something: Sex -- fantasy scenarios in particular -- are a way for me to articulate unconscious emotions.... Damn, I've tapped into a source of personal knowledge. Wow. (And I always knew that this blog meant something, in spite of what my rational mind claims.)
Now, according to the book, I have to find a way to let go of the pain of my 15 year-old self. I need to forgive her, to embrace her, to love her, to move on. (As for the swim team coach? Fuck him. He's dead to me.)
And so it goes.....