Confessions of a victim of child abuse

I was abused when I was only three or four. I hate myself now and I don't know how to snap out of it.

Khalid T November 15, 2012
Am I crazy?

Am I depressed?

Does this only happen to me?

Why do I feel so lonely, so empty?

Why am I scared to interact with others?

Why I am I not as courageous and strong as the other guys?

Why do I feel that people hate me?

Why am I leading such a life?

I had to deal with such and a lot of other questions like these when the "black dog" (depression) started haunting me some years ago. It may be hard to believe that a 15-year-old boy would have to deal with something as serious as depression, but it is true for me and others like me ─ people who have been victims of child abuse.

Yes, I went through child abuse; I was molested at a very young age. A servant at my house abused me when I was just three to four years of age. However, it had no impact on me in my early years.

I was once very bold, confident, sharp, cheerful and energetic, but by the time I reached grade eight, I began experiencing severe depression. I felt lonely and hopeless - as if I had lost everything. I felt like all the pleasure in my life and my self-esteem were being sucked out and reduced to nothing. My confidence was crushed and misery ate me inside. Negativity clouded my perception as all my positives were eroded away.

I lost my father when I was just a year old. My mother shifted to her parent's house and started working as a teacher. At home, I spent most of the time with my grandparents, a housemaid and a servant.

The male servant took advantage of the absence of my parents. He knew that my grandparents were old and ill and this encouraged him to maltreat me.

I still remember how he would secretly take me to the drawing room to molest me. I was way too young to understand what was going on, but I do know that it happened several times.

One day he was caught red-handed by my mother and the housemaid and he was fired. However, still no strict action was taken against him due to the absence of a 'man' in the house.

This is a part of my past, and the past cannot be changed, but it has the power to take everything away from the present. I feel as though I've completely lost my identity. Now I feel insecure amongst people of my own sex ─ boys at school, men outside, even my own cousins, some of whom adopt a sexual behaviour with me and forcibly try to touch me. I know it sounds strange that I am so paranoid about everyone, but only I know what hell I have had to deal with every day of my life.

As a result of this incident, I stopped trusting people at a very young age. Because of this, I was never able to develop friendships with my fellow male students and sat alone during lunch breaks, sports periods and home-time at school. Even at home, I would never go out to play with other kids.

To this day, I have no friends and thus no social circle. I try but I cannot communicate or interact with people at school, nor outside. Most of my time is spent feeling depressed and being enraged internally.

Depression will either make you lose or gain a lot of weight. In my case, I gained weight, because I eat to overcome depression. I have become the butt of every joke in my family because of my weight gain, too. No one realises that this only worsens my condition and fuels my inferiority complex and hopelessness.

I am living in a nightmare every day. I feel guilty and ashamed of myself. I cringe in memory of those day all the time, although deep down I know it wasn't my fault at all. I was just a child.

I do not blame God for this and try to practice my religion as much as I can because I know this is a test and I am going to get through it. But I would still like a friend who I can talk to ─ someone who can understand my situation and help me get though it.

I don't want to end up being a helpless and so-called 'innocent' child abuse victim; I want to be like others. I want to live and have a social life. I want my personality back ─ the self that I lost as a result of all this.

I want a reason to live; just one reason.

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WRITTEN BY:
Khalid T The author would like to remain anonymous.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.

COMMENTS (88)

Fortunate. | 8 years ago | Reply I cant imagine what the victims must go through. I guess I'm very fortunate that I wasnt brought up in Pakistan. But an incident did happen to me as well while I was little which can be categorized as indecent exposure. It was terrible and I still remember how confused I was at the time. My mother was terribly protective of me afterwards, she did everything short of roaming around streets with a rifle in her hand. What I have found helpful all these years is protecting everybody around me in particular young ones. I keep an eye on them all the time and encourage them to be open with me regarding their struggles. It somehow makes me feel better that I can help children because this still is a taboo topic in our society and most parents dont encourage this subject to be discussed. If you can just be there for somebody else, I believe it will make you feel a lot better.
Babar | 8 years ago | Reply I was abused when i was 11 years old by my driver who was married about 50 years old. I was keen to learn who to drive and he was willing to give me secret lessons as my parrents would not allow. He would take me to an open field and teach me to control the steering wheel while sitting on his lap . In beggining I did not understand that he had lust for me. I was white skinned and a beautiful boy. Slowly he started t say i Was very beautiful and he liked me. I took it as a compliment and still did not understand. One day while i was steering the wheel I felt him holding me tight nad breathing heavilly and I noiticed what was happening. I was nervous and told him I wanted to go home. He became very nervous and before taking me home he bought me a soft drink and talked to me about how he was being nice to me and why was I angry? I thought I misunderstood him. Next time when we went again he started to touch me. I do not no why but i did not stop him. T o make a long story short , this affair continued for 18 months and I did not tell anyone beacuse at that age i thought he really liked me. Maybe i ahd a hero worship type of a relationship with him although sexual. After he left our service, I missed him and then I got angry as to what had happened. I talked to one person only and he was an older person too but he took advnatage of me also. After that I never told anyone. As I grew older it did not bother me. I refused to see it as a bad experience. I saw it as an experience in life. I got older ,got married and have my own children now. At no time does it even come to hauntme any more because of te attitude I tod when i was about 16. I even met the driver whne i was married .He was an old man now. He needed money for an eye operation. I helped him with the eye operation.I felt much much better. venegence does nothing! After the operation he came to see me once to apologize for any hurt he had caused me. I told him there was no need as I forgave him a long time ago when I realized. He said thathe he had loved me genuinely but wish he had controlled his desires. I saw true apology in his voice and eyes. I am a happy man today becuase i did not take this bitterness with me forward. My advise to everyone: Move on with your life by forgiving and start enjoying things that you like. Think of it as a bad experience in life. There are many bad experiences that will happen to you along this journey of life. Have the courage to move on by learning a lesson and making sure it does not happen again. You can overcome this by how you react to the situation that you could not control when you were younger.
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