Asking Myself Why…


I have been struggling with something lately.  Well, struggling is not quite the right word. Perhaps I mean that I have been wondering about something lately, frustrated even.

My brother – the man who molested me when I was so young – why do I keep wanting his approval? Why do I keep trying to keep some kind of relationship, some kind of sibling bond? Why do I even care about him at all? Why, dammit… WHY?

I know that in its simplest, most basic form, my view of my abuser is messed up because my family covered it up, and when they did that, I learned not to hate my brother and instead learned to keep loving him regardless of what he did. I learned to pretend everything was ok and eventually the pretend became real – it except it wasn’t ok, nothing was ok, I was not ok and in many ways I am still not ok and never will be. He took that from me.

And now, 38 years after the abuse, and 27 years after exposing him, I have found myself still wanting his approval and I don’t know why. Especially after the family drama a few years ago when he stayed quite and didn’t stand up for me, I still seek his approval. Why do I do this? If anything, he should be seeking mine!

I have posted before about how he seems to view me as unintelligent and unimportant – maybe that’s how he needs to see me to deal with what he did to me.  The thing is, I am the exact opposite of all that. We have little communication these days, mostly through social media and usually about my mom. If he writes to me, I acknowledge it and respond in a caring way.  If I write him, he responds with maybe a couple words or not at all. So many times I think to myself that I am done. But then something will happen and I find myself reaching out to him again. I just don’t understand why I keep doing this. I have become so insightful about so many things and yet this reasoning escapes me completely. And each time it happens, I am let down a little more. But honestly, I am letting myself down at this point. He is the way he is and I can’t expect anything to come out of that.

Sometimes I wish I had been allowed to hate my abusers and never see them again. I think that has to be easier than being forced to be around them as a normal family. But then I think – it must all suck, each in its own way.  I guess I just need to be confident enough in myself to stop reaching out, to stop have any expectations of my brother, especially since he doesn’t have any of the grown-up, little girl that he so selfishly hurt.







2 thoughts on “Asking Myself Why…

  1. Maybe it would help if you stood much further back. Imagine you are hearing another woman tell that story as her story. What would you say to her? I was concerned about your description of the abuser being selfish, as if he stole sweets. If he was also a child at the time, then maybe there can be some argument for downplaying it a little bit; but still not just selfish. If he was young, around early teens at oldest; then it may be arguable that somebody did something that confused his understanding of what was right and wrong sexually. And once realised, he stopped, felt guilty, and didn’t do anything again. Doesn’t sound so much like what you are describing though.

    But if he was much older, especially if adult; then there is no room to manoeuvre. Either he is sexually aroused by little girls, or he is into the power trip of abuse. In either case, why would he have stopped?

    I know nothing except what I read. And if I am way off the mark, please forgive me. But at the risk of upsetting you; to me, you sound to be still under the influence of a lot of grooming.

    On 3 May 2017 3:20 p.m., “Breaking Sarah – Bruised, Not Broken” wrote:

    > breakingsarah posted: ” I have been struggling with something lately. > Well, struggling is not quite the right word. Perhaps I mean that I have > been wondering about something lately, frustrated even. My brother – the > man who molested me when I was so young – why do I keep wan” >


  2. Sarah, I was too raw and had too much to comment on this when I read it yesterday, so I shared some comments for you on “approval” in the blogs I wrote a few moments ago. I hope you you find them helpful as it shares what has been true in my experience. It has been on my heart. See Shift Key – Haiku 16.17 and Commentary on Haiku 16.17.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s