Facing My Fears: Overcoming CSA – Part II
Posted by Michele Rosenthal
Friday, September 6th, 2013 • PTSD Guest Post: Survivors Speak •
Guest Post By: Roberto Sardelli
This week we continue the series “Facing My Fears: Overcoming CSA” from Part I
The Impact It Had In My Life
The abuse made a huge impact on my life. I have always been closed up. I found it hard to mingle at parties or with any one. People would take advantage because I was afraid. Because of the fear of being abused, I never said “no.” When I met my wife, she asked why I seemed so distant, closed, and edgy. She asked if something happened to me when I was small. Afraid of what she might think, but more just not digging out those boxes from the back of my mind, my reply was “no”. It was not a “no” as in nothing happened to me, it was a “no” as in “let’s not go into that”.
Just over 4 years ago in 2009, memories started occurring; flashbacks. I told my wife I was sexually abused without going into details. Her reply, screaming at me, was “you are a filthy pig.” “How could let that happen to you,” she yelled at me. “Why did you not stop it,” she shouted. I just turned away from my wife, and blocked away the shouting, screaming, yelling just like my Childhood Sexual Abuse (CSA). At this stage, not even my mom and my dad knew. In fact, no one knew. My wife walked out of my life taking the kids with her. In the last 4 years she has been using my CSA to keep the kids away. Blaming me for what the CSA had done to my life, I closed myself up even more. I had people at work saying, “just live with it” or “why are you letting it bother or affect you?” In the UK, it is difficult to get counsel if you are a man. Not only trying to deal with the abuse, which I blocked away up to now again, I have been fighting a legal battle to see my kids. I have no help from the UK Government in order to try and deal with my abuse or to get the kids back in my life.
As I’ve faced my fears, I feel to a degree, I have overcome my CSA. One thing I can say is, My life goes on. Face your fears eye to eye. Do not blame yourself, you are not the abuser.
I am not a failure, a loser or stupid. I am not mentally ill like I was called when I had a stutter.
After so much negativity, abuse in my life and hitting rock bottom last year in April. I lost my flat and three days later my job. In November 2011, I lost my dad. I did not even say goodbye before he left.
In May 2012, having nothing but my laptop and a car to sleep in, I turned things around after knowing, seeing and tasting the lowest point of existence. I chose to seek the light at the end of the tunnel, to get out of that black hole called “rock bottom”.
I decided to start up my own business, with my laptop, MacDonald’s for internet, £250 in the bank and the car. I got a Public Liability Insurance policy, and I began emailing Vehicle Tracking Companies to promote my own business. People were telling me that I would not succeed, that this is was not easy.
In the fifth month, October 2012, my expenses were not even £1300 but my income was £6500.
As with having overcome the negativity from others with regards to my business, I chose to overcome my CSA, by writing about it, letting it out. It feels like I emptied out those boxes from the back of my mind and dumped them in the dumps.
I have to say a big thank you to Michele for that encouraging message on Twitter. To those who humiliated, bullied, abused me, a big thank you to all of you. For you all had a part on making me stronger. To my wife, thank you for your screaming, shouting, yelling at me and calling me a names. You have all made me stronger and more determined to fight for my kids and success in life.
I am not a victim, I am a SURVIVOR.