THIS is Part 2 of my story of trying to find an end to the abuse that happened to me; trying to find closure. I encourage you to read Part 1 if you haven’t done so already so you get the full scope of this post came about.
[As before, there is a Trigger Warning for this post as I will be talking about the events that started my sexual abuse as a child, including places that it happened.]
Here we go…
I asked J: “When will I ever be able to understand my triggers and flashbacks, why do they randomly happen, even when I least expect it?” She said that there’s a missing puzzle piece somewhere what we haven’t discovered yet; a memory that hasn’t surfaced, that will hopefully pull this all together.
“You don’t remember when the abuse stopped, do you?” she said. I replied with, “No”, but I sure remember when it started.
It was a breezy late afternoon and I was outside when I heard a mini bike up the street. I looked up in the field and there was this kid that family had known for quite a while (his parents were friends with mine). This bright, electric blue Honda minibike with black handle grips, silver rims, black wheels, black seat, and a single speedometer sitting on the top of the headlight. It was like a magnet, I was drawn to it. I had to go see this bike and see this kid who was larger than life and just looked cool.
I started walking down the street wearing in my brown corduroy pants, brown b.a.s.s. shoes, white t-shirt and green/white flannel shirt. I almost couldn’t stop myself; at least that’s how I remember it. He waved to me as soon as he saw me coming and kept riding around the field. Each time I would get closer and he would come around the bend, he would wave or smile more. By the time I got up to the field, he stopped and said, “Hey”, and said, “Hi, that’s such a cool bike you have”. “Thanks”, he said, “you want to go for a ride?”
I was beside myself with excitement! “Really?” I said. He said “Yeah man, hop on and hold on to me tight!” So, I hopped on the back without even giving it a second thought, and he took me around the field several times before finally stopping at the same place that we first met several minutes earlier.
I got off the back, with a huge smile on my face and said, “that was so awesome!” “I’ll see you later man,” he said, and then rode off back to his house. By now he already knew he had me hook, line, and sinker. His plan was already working.
That’s how the abuse started the first time, with that first ride and my desire to fit in, to be with a cool kid, to show the bullies at school that I had a teenage friend and I got to ride the coolest bike I’d ever seen. He groomed me and played on my emotions over time to get me to a place where I couldn’t say no to what he was planning to do to me.
For some amount of time, months, a year, I don’t know, he took advantage of me in a way nobody should have to experience. The very thought of what went down still makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up, gives me chills, anxiety, and I tense up like you wouldn’t believe.
I can see the dimly lit room, the wood panelled walls, the umbrella basket in the corner beside the couch; and that couch! White with brown colored leaf patterns on it, wooden arms rests with a wooden circle on top, and the old style throw pillows with the one big button in the middle, two of them. I can see the lamp on the end table, opposite the couch, that barely lit the room. Shag carpet, dark rust in color; it gives me the creeps even as I write this now.
I can also see the shed where the bikes were stored, and the lawn mowers and gardening equipment was kept. It smelled of gasoline, and the floors were old wood that had some small holes in them. The boards on the walls of the shed had some knot holes in them too, and there was a work bench and a sink (at least I remember a sink for some reason but don’t know why). There was a garden beside the shed too, where they grew lettuce and cucumbers. I still hate cucumbers today.
That’s where the abuse happened, just over 100 yards from my house, and nobody ever knew what was happening
To sum this up for now, perhaps one of the keys to all of these flashbacks and memories is that I can’t put a definitive end to anything. I don’t know when the abuse stopped. I have no idea what transpired that caused me to stop going down for rides and to his house; back to that abuse repeatedly. Did I threaten to tell, or maybe he just got bored with me? Did I just decide one day I’d had enough and never went back again?
Either way, it’s a huge missing puzzle piece that I can’t fit into the framework of my life right now. I don’t honestly know if I will ever remember why or when or how the abuse stopped. That in itself is unbelievably frustrating. If I can ever find a way to jog that memory loose, it might offer me enough answers to curb the anxiety & flashbacks, in time. Then again, it might raise more questions and my mind knows I’m not ready to go there yet.
Matt is a Blogger-Podcaster-Author-Advocate for mental health. He is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse & narcissistic abuse, living with dissociation, anxiety, & PTSD.