Trigger warning — I’m being honest and open where I never have before. If you have suffered from abuse, I caution reading this. Feel free to skip to the end where I discuss why I’m sharing my story.
I’m male, as a boy I believe I was abused at a young age, but don’t remember it. What makes me believe this is because at a young age of 4 or 5 a group of friends went away from our houses and we played doctor. However, doctor was inserting objects. I don’t recall where it was inserted, but my mind frame was that I wanted to do it more. I wanted to continue doing it. I didn’t want to stop. At that age, curiosity is one thing, this level of activity had to come from somewhere.
I always felt different from everybody else even at a very young age. These thoughts progressed. I took an individual with a friend and force her pants down. I don’t know what happened specifically. I believe I was five or six. My mom caught us and put me in time out. My friend got in trouble with his mom. No concealing or any lectures or education followed from my memory.
At an older age, probably 7-9 I remember having a model of a home that was used for educational purposes. I would envision trapping a specific girl down there and trapping her as I molested her. Also around that time there was a younger girl that went on a walk with me, I lured her. I tried to find every excuse to have her let me see or touch her. She was taught well, she ran and I had to work hard to convince her not to tell anybody. If this would have succeeded I can only imagine where things could have escalated to.
At age 8, I was baptized. I was very worried that they would know my secret thoughts. I threw up that night. I felt sick about being baptized. I didn’t feel clean, I didn’t feel worthy. At the age of 7 had had the thought of suicide because I was still considered innocent and wouldn’t have to suffer through life with my perversion.
At age 12 or 13 I learned about masturbation. Due to my depression and anxieties and not fitting it, it became an escape route of pleasure to hide away from life. I always felt unworthy and lied about being worthy. It was a dark secret and I couldn’t imagine ever confessing. I was always too nervous to have a girl friend or find normal relations with a girl as I thought I wasn’t worthy of them. The perversion in me had to be turned off and I didn’t know how to relate to girls. Not different from other boys my age, but still something I thought about.
Around this same age I was on a camping trip and was sleeping next to a girl. Keeping specifics out of this to protect her. I thought she was asleep, I touched her to find out what girls were like. I didn’t know what I was doing. I didn’t know anything about a girls body. I stopped after a few minutes and as I was thinking about it, she got up out of the tent and left. I was so nervous she would tell her mom and dad. She avoided me like the plague. Every time she haunted me on two fronts, one of great shame and one of a perverse boy trying to understand the desires and perversions within me.
I confessed to my bishop around age 16. I dumped everything on him. He tried to comfort me, however, this should have triggered a huge warning flag that I needed help and concealing. He asked me not to take the sacrament and to meet with him every other week. He wanted me to be able to go without masturbation for a few months. The shame was so great that I lied and wouldn’t go back. I told him I had stopped. Suicide and not being worthy to serve a mission was a serious issue. I however knew I couldn’t not serve a mission as it would bring a deep shame on my parents and I would never hear the end of it. I have had dreams 20+ years afterwards with worthiness issues in regards to being able to serve a mission.
I wasn’t worthy for my mission call. I postponed it as long as I could. Prior to that I dated a girl. I never kissed her because I was nervous I wouldn’t know where to stop and I would offend her. She was my ideal temple sealing perfect future wife. I was infatuated with her. I couldn’t build a correct relationship as I was super goody goody on the outside and perverse on the inside.
I served a faithful mission. Felt unworthy the whole time though. I came home and dated a little but became engrossed online chat rooms and phone sex with other girls. One was an 18 year old senior from high school. Pornography fed this perversion within. I ended up having sex with two women to experience it. One was much older and another was married. I shortly met my wife and knew that if I didn’t marry her that I wouldn’t find a chance. I married her mostly because she accepted me and “loved” me. After a short engagement and dating time we got married in the temple. All the while I lied about being worthy. The shame and guilt were real.
A year into the marriage, my wife caught onto my porn that didn’t stop. I had figured that after marriage that I would have everything figured out. That the frequent sex would divert me from wanting it elsewhere or in other forms. I think I would have mostly been correct in that but my wife wasn’t really into sex as I didn’t understand the relationship and her being raised LDS didn’t have any background either. I don’t blame this on my wife at all. I blame this on me. She suffered because of my history and lack of understanding relationships and sexual boundaries. When she caught me, I confessed to everything. I had an understanding leadership that worked with me. I was disfellowshipped and went to lds social services for “therapy”. The focus was not on me being a victim but instead on me having an addiction. I went to an SA meeting but fortunately my wife was nervous it would spur something worse.
As an adult I continue to struggle, but with healthy LDS adult related issues and not perversions. I set clear boundaries for myself to help make sure that I never go there. I feel fortunate that I don’t snuggle the same as when I was a youth. That being said, this protest is a trigger for me. I have felt a lot of anger because the church should know this. They have professionals that understand what an abused victim can do, that their brains thinking can change, that they are not healthy. That they need assistance. Nobody in all my years of talking to leadership or concealing ever considered me a victim, but only how to fix the problem through changing of thoughts and putting habits elsewhere. They didn’t see that I needed more.
I consider myself at fault. I will always bare the shame of those I have hurt. An apology isn’t sufficient. I have fought to have my voice heard, but leadership have cast my sounding trump and considered it as persecution. This is real shit. I see it from being a perpetrator. I have been pure evil. There is no excuse for it. There is also no excuse for leadership to not take appropriate actions. I will not let my voice stop. I will not stop protecting victims or to be victims and I will always fight against the perpetrator.
Those that are reading this still, that are active LDS. I ask that you consider Christ. How does He know how to help us all. The victims that feel as dross and just want to die. The perpetrator that doesn’t know how to stop, a trigger is switched and there is very little to stop it. I believe that in order for the atonement to heal the victims, that Christ himself would have had to in a very real sense been a victim. Why else would he be with the sinners and those that aren’t “perfect”. If you believe in Christ, you damn well better believe that he understands what it is like to be a victim and you damn well better stop allowing situations for there to be victims or else you are also allowing Christ to be a victim. It could be Christ in that one on one.
I condemn myself. I condemn the church. I condemn all leaders that aren’t willing to open their eyes to this. Let the evil be shouted from the housetops. Let the NDA legal signings stop. Church, get your big boy pants on and face the music, just as any other person would. Live your teachings. I am a lion, not a good one, a wounded one. I will fight I will die before I let someone else be a victim. Damn you all that down play victims or victim shame. Damn you all that are too self righteous not to look into this issue and walk blindly by as another victim is hurt. God doesn’t need to be defended. He died for all of us and has faced all the shame, why the hell does he need protection and why the hell would you protect the perverse?
My voice is not a common one. It is a story not heard because the shame is so great. I would much rather be crucified than to see another hurt. Church, get out your damn divining rods and seer stones and start seeing how you can protect the children. If you can’t do this, then damn well change your policies. If you don’t do this, I will gladly stand at the judgement bar and judge each of you before God that I testified before you that your policies are not the Lord’s. So either start acting as as the Lord’s servants or move over for someone that will.
Due to my shaming through my life due to circumstances I didn’t understand or could control, I was close to suicide. I hurt my wife, and others. If leaders and parents had been taught about being open about sexual matters and the need for therapy and open understanding of the reality of the body, function and women’s perspective on sex, it would have saved many heartaches. I see Joseph Bishop as being similar to me, however I didn’t make his choices. I choose not to go that route. His actions were “NOT” a one time thing. This was years of abusing others.
— From an abuser / victim / son of god / son of the damned, all because the culture and teachings were to sweep it under the rug.