my life is a *trigger warning*
notes on surviving ritual abuse
wake up! you can’t remember who you are
it is 2012, and i’m 34 years old. i have been sober for 2 weeks. i’m trying to end an 18 year addiction to alcohol (all the other drugs: crack, MDMA, “ecstasy”, speed, psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, cocaine, marijuana, hashish, miscellaneous, unknown and unidentified have never really numbed my feelings the way i wanted, and i never got addicted to them).
i am on the bed in my apartment and I’m being overwhelmed with feelings of fear, revulsion and grief. i am stunned, maybe shocked as i finally admit to myself that i think that my biological father sexually abused me as a child.
i decide to call my counselor. i’ve been in counseling for about 10 months now. luckily, she’s home and I talk with her and she agrees to come over immediately. i’ve been crying. i can barely think. i don’t know what to do.
she arrives, and I let her in. she sits on the couch and I tell her I think my dad molested me. she says something sympathetic. she comforts me. she has become, over the past 10 months, the person i trust the most. right now she is the solid foundation that i’m clinging to in a world that makes little sense, and that feels terrifying. she stays with me for a half an hour or so while we talk, and i start to recover from the triggered feelings that are overwhelming me. we reconfirm that i have an appointment in a few days, and she leaves.
weeks and then months pass as i begin to accept, tentatively at first, that the memories I have of my childhood are partial and incomplete. the me that i remembered as being me was not whole, the self that i thought of as being me, excluded large periods of my life – years i eventually realized.
i also realized that the arrogant, controlling, angry, domineering and emotionally distant person I know as my dad is only what i remember of him trying to be a decent father….
what i didn’t remember, and what was surfacing, was being molested – touched, raped, and abused in myriad ways, as well as being tortured: drowned in the bathtub; starved and dehydrated; kept awake for days at a time. the man i remembered was not usually visibly out of control, or raging. for the most part, although the rape, torture and abuse was used to “discipline” me, the torture, and, to a lesser extent the rape and abuse, was highly systematic.
the first memories were only of my biological father. but once i’d begun to remember that abuse, i began, bit by bit, to remember others: uncles, aunts, and then my biological mother. eventually i remembered being raped, tortured and abused by every adult member of my family, as well as people who were not related to me by blood or law.
months later come even more memories of the abuse and of the cult. every childhood “friend” from kindergarten until high school, and, to a lesser extent, most of the people I knew well in ottawa until I started political organizing 9 years ago, when i began making friends in the activist community here.
i am a ritual abuse survivor
ritual abuse involves the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual rape, abuse and torture of children, and to a lesser extent, adults, with the intention of indoctrinating them into the cult, and maintaining and expanding the cult. animals, as well as plants are also raped, tortured and killed as part of the indoctrination.
i was born into a satanist cult, and i was raped, tortured and abused, as far as i know, from the day i was taken home from the hospital, until i ran away from home at the age of 18. i wasn’t raped and tortured every day, although there were periods, maybe a year or more, that this was true. by the time i ran (i took a flight to mexico), i already had a large number of dissociated identities, as well as my main personality, that did not remember any of the abuse i had experienced. some of these identities were much more whole than others, and had existed over a period of years, while most were only fragments, and fragments of fragments. these personalities were created intentionally, and the cult, through creating and programming identities, had also created identities that were not able to defend themselves – that could not speak, or move, for example. in this way, they managed to continue to abuse me in adulthood.
there is a relatively small community of ritual abuse survivors on turtle island (aka north America), and, no doubt, around the world.
for more information you can check out these links:
and these books:
Healing the Unimaginable: Treating Ritual Abuse and Mind Control
Ritual Abuse and Mind Control: The Manipulation of Attachment Needs
The Extent & Nature of Organised & Ritual Abuse- Research Findings
The Politics and Experience of Ritual Abuse Beyond Disbelief
some (much, it seems to me), of the information available about ritual abuse is not, or does not appear to be credible, especially some of what exists on the internet, but there are many survivors, as well as experts (psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, academics) who confirm the existence of cults, and of ritual abuse.
there was and is also a movement that denied the experiences and stories of ritual abuse survivors.. it was strongest and best known in the 90s, but there are still people and groups who are actively engaged in trying to deny the reality of ritual abuse. they claim that we suffer from “false memory syndrome” and that we have been manipulated by our therapists. Fortunately their arguments have, by now, been discredited.