Monday 7 June 2021

Thought Picnic: A child has memories that last a lifetime

Caught in a body of lustful desire

Lasciviousness is a word I first saw in the Bible, and I could only wonder what it meant and why especially in the Pauline epistles, it had consequence on church building and church discipline.

The gospel had been taken to heathen nations with completely liberal and sometimes abusive human relationships along with the absence or lack of moral restraint. People just did what they tended to do until someone came with the message, that was all wrong and not how to behave as Christians.

Until a moral code was introduced through Christianity or some religious instruction, human beings were just themselves to live, strive, maybe thrive and die.

I never had a virginity

That I had to answer a question, ‘Are you so loose?’, left me pondering the many things that I have covered on my blog many times which pertain to the consequences of child sexual abuse and how I have hopefully used my experience to help others who might have had even more debilitating outcomes in life than I have been fortunate to have.

For instance, I was introduced to sex a lot earlier than I should ever have been. There were probably signs in my character and personality that something had happened to me, but only the trained eye might have been able to notice. On that point, this was at the age of 7 and who it was will not be revealed to anyone except if I decide to put it in a book. My first reference in January 2007 covers some of that experience.

Blog - My Sex Post (January 2007)

Then, I wrote a blog about virginity with the conclusion that I never knew I even had one. There are people who later in life got to experience sex for the first time in a place and manner of their choosing. What does a child know about those kinds of choices?

Blog - Thought Picnic: How do you lose your virginity? (August 2011)

And I am one of the lucky ones

I went to watch the film Spotlight in 2016, it was about the investigation of clerical child abuse in America. I was the last to leave the cinema theatre when the film ended, it was not only distressing, but I was also weeping because I knew what those children had gone through. Many victims of child sexual abuse do not even know they are being groomed, programmed, and abused.

The people who exploit children for sexual pleasure are good at winning the confidences of both parent and child that by the time the child has been violated the odds are so stacked against the child that they have no one to run to in time of need as the abuse is perpetuated.

Blog - Shine a Spotlight on child sexual abuse (January 2013)

The impact of indirect action

My father was a strict disciplinarian in every sense of the word, he probably meted out his most violent punishments on his youngest sister. I hate to think of the ways she might have sought revenge against her brother, inadvertently, I was a casualty a few times.

As a child observer of what was happening, my father became unapproachable, even an ogre of sorts, when we began to have our disagreements in my teenage years, we were long past a place of useful reconciliation and confidences. Yet, he had this seething displeasure with me for so long, with the view that I was constantly disrespectful of him as I did not subscribe to the obsequiousness that others had towards him. I am a son; I would scream within myself, but a relationship did not thrive.

“When our parents confused our fear of them with our respect of them, they lost the many times we could have confided in them.”

Blog - Thought Picnic: The Barrier to Confiding in our Guardians (May 2013)

We talked about sex once

Time does not heal the loss of innocence; it simply compounds the experience to the inability to either discriminate or make the right choices about something as intimate and serious as sex. I do wonder how many of my generation ever had a conversation about sex with their parents.

I know I never did and the first time that topic ever came up was when our housemaid fell pregnant. She, under interrogation of my mother, my mother asked her if I was responsible for it.

Well, whilst the houseboys and sometimes gateman had taken sexual favours off me from the age of 8 into my teens, I doubt I gave the house-girls a third look. As I would not have initiated anything.

It was recently that I learnt a whole new truth about that sordid event because all the while, I remember returning home from seeing my mother at the hairdressers with my cousin to see her dishevelled and apparently roughed-up, I asked no questions, but I thought whoever I thought was responsible was apparently not the person who violated her. Anyway…

Blog - Thought Picnic: We Never Knew What a Healthy Sexual Relationship Was Because ... (May 2013)

I can’t speak evil of my parents

There are two episodes in my childhood that mark out the relationship I have had with my parents and the sad reality that they might only learn some things for the first time out of reading my blog.

I was taken ill and sleeping in my bed when a female family friend of ours came into my room and sat on me. I knew who she was because of what I said to her, “I will tell your husband.”

My mother was in the next room nursing my brother when she called out to me to determine what was going on. I completely drew a blank, it was as if the memory of who assailed me had been erased, eventually out the recesses of my memory, I now remember who she was.

However, this began a number of ritualistic and religious activities apparently contracted to save me from harm, the extension to that is how my mother bought my silence many years later after a visit to some spiritual figure by threatening with that kind of experience again.

Then, my aunt, my father’s youngest sister was chatting to our houseboy one day about paranormal activity in the presence of my utterly impressionable mind. That night we had visitors and I was called to clear the dishes to the kitchen, though the washing area was in the garden in the dark.

When I returned to the kitchen with the dishes, my aunt adjured me to take them to the washing area and as I stepped up to the table and before me, I saw a tall, big red-chested beastly apparition, that I heard later that night and saw again in the presence of my mother, I believed was the devil and screamed in terror. Everyone ran out and I told my tale, well, my dad dismissed it, the burden fell to my mother to deal with and that was one of the things I was threatened with if I revealed where we had been.

Blog - The damage done when parents fail to listen (February 2015)

If anyone touches you: A parent talks

I wonder if there is much to say about the need for parental involvement fully in sexual education. It should not be ignored first in the view that the child is innocent or secondly in the fear that it might corrupt the child.

Just imagine for one if a parent as the child was growing up had said, “If anyone touches you there, run to me and tell me, do not think twice about it, I am here to protect you.” It is speculation, but I think a lot of child sexual abuse might have been nipped in the bud.

Then, who knows?

Blog - Sexual Education and Parental Naivety (August 2019)

I write to help myself and others

I am not looking for anyone to believe me or even pity me for what I have experienced, but what I will not allow to be taken away from me is my own story in my own words. What my blog has done fore me and to help me come to terms with many things is immeasurable.

Fundamentally, I hold nothing against anyone including my parents, but that does not obviate the essential necessity to bring these things into the open so they can be discussed privately, if that opportunity comes up or publicly with others who might find that what I have written resonates with them.

What matters the most is that the old mistakes are not repeated in the generations that come after us. If anything, that it is the most important thing.

Blog - A survivor does not owe you a convincing story (July 2019)

Back to the question

Lasciviousness: unrestrained sexual behaviour, or a habitual inclination to such behaviour; lustfulness: []

So, the question was, Are you so loose (sexually, morally, whatever)? How would I know, if I lost my innocence at 7? Sex became utilitarian and I was already sexually active from 8 and it is from sexual activity that I contracted HIV almost 19 years ago, and all the things that emanated from that.

I am thankful for what new love has given me in preserving and preparing myself for intimacy that has value, I cannot escape from my history, but I can refuse it let it define me.

Am I so loose? Go figure!

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