POWERLESSNESS

From FALLOUT: A Survivor Talks to Incest Offenders (and Others) by moi:

Herman(2000, 98) remarks that “as guardians of the incest secret, survivors have been warned time and  again that they could bring disaster upon their families by revealing what they know. Ironically, the victim of incest has been handed the power to destroy the family, yet the double bind she is in renders her powerless to act.”

DeYoung (1982, 51) cites one victim who said, “Okay, here I am, 12 years old and my father’s screwing me practically every night. If I tell someone he goes to jail, my brothers and sister won’t speak to me, and my mom will have a heart attack or something. But if I let him keep screwing me I’ll go nuts. So what do I do?  Tell my folks I need a weekend alone at the Holiday Inn to think things over; or go to the corner bar to have a few drinks and discuss it with my pals? No, I pack up my clothes, rob my piggy bank, stick out my thumb and split.  And I keep on splitting every time the cops catch me and bring me home.”

It may very well be that a large number of teenage suicides are  youths who find themselves in a similar no-win situation, prevented from even leaving a suicide note , keeping the secret until the end and beyond. “There is no way out, no place to run.” (Summit, 1983, 184).  (p. 161)

According to Gaddini (1983, 357), years after the incest, survivors who did not report often wished they had, and those who did report wished they had not.” (p. 162)

About Nan Mykel

At 79, I was just about to stop keeping a journal, but that felt like accepting that growth was finished. I don't want to be finished, yet! I'm 80 now, and struggling to communicate with you, if you'll come and set awhile. P.S. My how time flies! I'm 82 now.
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2 Responses to POWERLESSNESS

  1. owningitlog says:

    Oh god, that’s so brutally true.

    Like

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