Victim Impact: Listen and Learn (Child Sexual Abuse, Story 2)
The video in this series (NCJ 223072) features the first-person account of Ron who shares his experience as victim of child abuse and the ripple effect that victimization can have on family members and the community at large. A companion online only training curriculum is also available and includes a two part facilitator manual and a participant workbook.
It was part of my childhood to be beaten so badly that my eyes would be swollen shut for days on end. I had an uncle who was . . . he was a sadist. He was brutal. He was... He was absolutely insane. And I suffered beatings at his hands time and time and time again. He would be the only father figure that I would know as a child because my mother and him lived together all throughout the earliest part of my childhood. My mother was as well . . . she was a violent person. Any small thing that annoyed her, it was taken out on us kids.
My mother handed me over to a pedophile when I was 5, and by then, I—you would have thought that I was conditioned to handle . . . the horrors of my life, but this added a new dimension to my suffering, and I found it almost unbearable to deal with. So, as a kindergartner, I would have to leave kindergarten class and go home and have sex with this man who was in his 50s.
I remember the long walk home—and crying. And falling down and having to get back up and walking along, and falling down and crying and getting back up and walking on. I had to adjust to that situation. I had no choice but to shoulder this responsibility, and I learned that food meant sex for me.
Young in life, I would turn to drugs. And that would be a friend of mine for a long, long, long time. My journey has been an enormous struggle for me. I’ve known years and years of depression. I’ve, uh...I’ve, uh... I’ve been physically sick in times in my life. I lost my job. I had no friends. I... I assumed I would die. I never expected to live through this.
I don’t think being abused as a child goes away. There’s things that I deal with as an adult now that, uh, it’s kind of like problem . . . trouble shooting. I maintain taking care of my mental health and my emotional health, and I’ve learned over the years to be fairly good at it. I know that I am a high-functioning abuse survivor.
I have a propensity towards honesty, whereas my siblings don’t. They . . . they want to just forget it. They don’t want to think about it. But I think it’s more insidious than that. We were made to witness crimes committed against one another over and over again. It’s like we’re . . . we hold the truth, and we can’t get near one another. It’s too horrible. To even see each other is so painful.
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