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When Forgiveness Doesn039t Work

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upcomingnerd Level 102 Scania Beast Tamer Shared
My family as a whole has been quite shattered and divided over the years, it has taken a loss of a loved one to reunite us. Well that was the dream of it but unfortunately dreams aren't real. During the past two weeks, as a show of support family members have been going to my Aunt's house to be with her. Some of those people I haven't seen in over 15 years.

Now some family members have issues with others and under the banner of forgiveness and moving forward in life they reconciled. Even hugged. I was hesitant to make amends with my cousin who abused me as a child, but after putting my cousin to rest I figured it was now or never to move past it. So despite not wanting to, I approached her and I told her. That was a long long time ago, and life is precious we need to put that behind us. So I went to give her a hug and she stopped me. Telling me that she never did anything to me. That took me aback. I wasn't asking her to apologize, I wasn't asking her to admit what she did to me was sick. All I asked of her was to move forward and she chose not to give me that. It has been very difficult for me to even be under the same roof as her at my Aunt's and it took all of my courage to approach her and speak to her.

Now this is where I stand. In Ontario there is no statute of limitations on child abuse. I have tried to make amends with her. I truly did. That was the reason why I never pursued a course of action against her in the past but now that I can say with a clear mind that I have. What happens now, is on her.

I guess my question is, should I pursue criminal charges against her now? Or should I continue to let her live life with no consequences for her actions. My family has endured a lot recently and this will only further burn bridges but where is my peace. When it began I was 8 years old continuing for years, and when it came to light within the family, I was a teenager. No one stood up for me. She denied it and it was swept under a rug. Out of sight out of mind. Now at 30, I'm no longer a child, I no longer wish for someone to hold my hand and tell me it wasn't my fault. It wasn't.

It's weird how the mind works, as a teenager I used to gym a lot. I thought to myself, I'm going to get so big that no one can ever take advantage of me again. Then in my early twenties, I heard that I might see her again and I felt scared like a child. I was twice her size, but mentally she broke me. She went on to live her life carefree, while I was tormented. I drank a lot of alcohol in my teenage years, and slept with numerous women just to get her out of my mind. But I still remember what she did to me. I was furious at my family, how could they not protect me. Now as an adult though, I realize we all have our demons. The only person who will protect me, is me. Just writing this, is bringing out a lot of buried emotions. The more I write, the more I want her to pay for what she did.

I know, some of you who read this may say, well she was a woman. You probably enjoyed it. Truth be told, I certainly did at first. The act in itself to me, isn't the reason I want justice. It's the confused mindset I had growing up, not truly knowing what was right or wrong in certain instances. I have female cousins who are younger than myself and we used to play dolls, them with their barbies and me with darkwing duck. One time we were playing and I had my toy kissing their barbies private parts and I thought that that was normal. My little cousins were children as well, only being exposed to such depravity because of what I did. We didn't have the internet as freely back in the day, yes I am old. As I got older and I started to realize what she did to me was wrong and sick, I became distant with all my female family members. As a safeguard from my twisted mind. I never wanted to do to them, what she did to me. Not physically, not emotionally, not anything in resemblance. My little sister, I was never there for her when she needed me the most in her life because of my abuser. She struggled with drugs and cutting and attempted suicide and maybe, just maybe if I was there for her as an older brother should be. She wouldn't have. My dad was always at work, understandably. Mom complete nutcase, depression, anxiety, suicidal as well. Just not fit to be a mom. So knowing that, I should have been there for my sister. But I wasn't. That's something I have to live with. Now I'm there for her tooth and nail but the damage is done. My mom doesn't always say the most Mom thing's. She blamed me for what my sister went through. But where was she? When I was around 6 I got really ill and when my sister tried to kill herself, my mom, she told me I was useless and that I should have died that day. She has said some very heartless things to me, but it is only now as an adult that I know her mind isn't well either. All I can do is forgive her and move on, because at the end of the day she is still my mom and she needs me.

Life, it's brutal sometimes. But I'm glad I'm alive. I just don't know what to do regarding this.
Posted: July 2017 Permalink


andreaverilia Level 209 Windia Evan 10th Growth
How? How did you do it?
How did you shatter pink diamond?
Jul 17 2017
xreniya Level 209 Bera Evan 10th Growth AUniversityO Guild See what games, anime & art xreniya is intoXreniya
imagine what things will be like after she gets her just deserts. will it have been worth the effort? will your life be or feel any better knowing she got what was coming to her, so many years later?
did she know the damage she was doing? how old was she?
pursuing charges will cause more damage. is the damage worth the justice? is injustice worth avoiding damage? how important is it to you that she's punished, and how much will it bother you if she isn't?
none of those questions are rhetorical, good luck
Jul 17 2017
bridesmaid Level 164 Scania Shadower
Most families tend to seem divided, but possibly only because you have some expectations of what it means to be part of one. I am certain each one is busy trying to make a living and hopefully found some decent income so they don't struggle with the bigger picture. They could have been through worse, but finally able to relax. My family members like to be positive role models, but they don't know why the kids are fighting, and tend to keep to themselves. Consider how parents might react against certain consequences set by another parent. Not all adults are wise enough to resolve disputes between children.

Immediately, you compare reconciliations and essentially set yourself up. Everyone tends to remember things differently, I cannot say what goes on through the abuser's head, but it could be a mental illness deep within herself she is regularly dealing with. Maybe to you it was the right time to make amends, but easily the situation could have been that the presence of others would have made her feel vulnerable or she doesn't want to establish any bond with you regardless of the past. Maybe you don't see each other regularly anymore and the next time would be forever.

Part of growing up is realizing how to move forward instead of getting caught up in what was or what will be. You finally came to a conclusion with your abuser after your attempt and the effort gave you the experience of talking about your feelings. You're still clinging on to it though because you have heart for her, which can easily come back to revolt the more you dwell on it. Hope for the best, then continue living your life without concern over the scars.

You should leave her alone and let it be instead of desire a punishment over a matter only you're concerned with. It may not seem fair, but it is up to you to make yourself a better person no matter what. And not as a means of getting back at her, but simply to practice your own inner peace and accept yourself. You aren't weak because you dealt with abuse, you will be weak if you're moved by contempt more so than inspiration. Suppose she got help with having hurt you in her past and cleared it. She wasn't strong enough to settle it with you, but she wouldn't want to restore a grim past anymore than the rest of us.

If all your stress and motivation revolved around trying to get back at someone, then you're really only fighting yourself until the day you're faced with challenging her. This is another expectation setup that will haunt you yet again when you cannot come to the terms you seek. Family will help you for you, but what you want is help for her because she is a monster, to you. Pain is gain, I got jumped in High School, but I am not exhausting my energy on those gals anymore, I forgot their names and learned to defend myself. If I wished doom upon all my enemies, I would have a terrifying mindset contemplating to destroy. If I wished closure upon all my enemies, I would feel delighted if one day they did change. If they didn't, I'd feel sorry instead of hatred.

Believe it or not, most of the world is crazy, depressed, dying, hungry, etc. The media tries to feed our fears and sell us jolly garbage to expand our horizons because each day will inevitably fall, but fortunately rise tomorrow or so we hope. Get used to trash being thrown at you in all directions and varieties because if you can handle it, the solution will be simpler next time and you may find a joy in your achievement. Each waking moment is an opportunity to do something new or brush up on your talents, make the most of it or you will regret it and direct blame. Stop wasting time by travelling back into your memories, and instead develop them into stories that can help others.

I really hope you can take care of yourself from now on because that is what your family needs from you. They need you to be strong and able pick yourself up from falling so one day you might save them. Try to believe that when it comes to it, your family will most likely do their best to help you in a financial crisis or something easy, but these other emotional dilemmas are more constant and depending on the party it could be more demanding. Don't beat yourself up, even if it seems difficult you have clearly learned a lot and made fair decisions. Keep going for the best options that would ensure all our safety. I am glad you've kept your head above the water.
Jul 19 2017
trueatheist Level 63 Bera Crossbow Man Justaway Guild See what games, anime & art trueatheist is intoTrueAtheist
Only reason I would advise against pursuing criminal charges is that these cases 99% of the time will not result in a conviction. You would need to have several witnesses who would be willing to go on the stand and give testimony, and you'd need specific dates and places where it happened with other witnesses to corroborate everything your saying to even begin building a case. Most likely it will end up causing you more stress than you bargained for and the case will be thrown out before charges are even formally laid.

With that being said there are other ways you can go about getting justice. You could always tarnish her reputation. Bring it up to other family members and friends and let it be known what kind of monster she is so that people will think twice before letting children around her again.
Jul 27 2017
First of all, sorry that these things have happened to you. I feel like this is the sort of thing you speak to some therapist or counselor about, especially since this is dealing with a case that involves some traumatic abuse that has happened to you, and if you're going to pursue legal action it'll help to get some support as you progress through that. Such a legal case I imagine would be quite lengthy - since this is dealing with something that has occurred over an extended period of time, a long time ago, and so you'll need to be ready to face and talk about certain things that will be a challenge to your mental health. This is where you'll need support for that.

If you have had witnesses who can testify that this sort of abuse has happened to you, all the better. It'll be difficult, otherwise, to proceed without some kind of hard evidence that you can present to show that these things did indeed happen. If the cousin is still abusing others, then you may have a better shot at being taken seriously.

Also speak to a lawyer about how to proceed - you're not likely going to have many folks who can give you some legal advice straight up on this forum.

Good luck to you - this won't be very easy.
Jul 27 2017

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