September 18, 2006

Child Abuse - Part 2

My sister and I fought a LOT when we were young. We antagonized one another incessantly and screamed at one another during these conflicts. Our fighting was so constant and unpleasant that many people refused to have us at their house at the same time.

Once, my sister and I got into trouble for fighting and were charged with doing the laundry.

She and I both carried armfuls of clothes to put away in my parent's room where there was only a narrow passage between the end of the bed and the wall of shelves and drawers that held their clothes.

I went in first and put away the clothes I had, leaving her to stand and wait for me to get out of the way.

My dad was angry with us and was watching us do everything to make sure we did not fight and did our chores properly.

My sister moved to give way so I could get out of the narrow passage by flopping back onto my parent's bed.

My dad thought I pushed her.

I protested saying I didn't push her.

He said he saw me.

She refused to testify on my behalf.

I was directed to pull down my pants and underwear and lean over my dad's lap while he spanked me with his bare hand.

He has never apoligized for the injustice to this day and I have never forgiven him the offence.

Spankings with his bare hand on my bare bottom were not uncommon. In fact, they got to be so common that they really didn't hurt. Or maybe they hurt, but I learned to dismiss the pain. I would lie there while he beat on my bottom.

When he spanked us it was usually a machine gun pattern of fierce slapping that would go on for several minutes at a time. My endurance for the pain often exceeded his ability to give it because there were times when he would have to change rythm and even tell me to turn the other way so he could use his other hand.

I remember making it a game to see how long I could last. To this day, I can still find that place in my mind to go to when I need to dismiss physical pain.

He would not stop until he had decided I was crying hard enough. At least, I think that was his standard because when I got bored I would sometimes pretend to cry and he wouldn't stop until I really put my heart into my screams. Sometimes if I didn't lean across his knees right and he pushed down on my back too hard, I would have to give up early because I couldn't breathe.

Another time, my sister and I were fighting and she threw something, I don't remember what, and hit me. I chased after her and she ran into her room. When I reached her room, right behind her, my dad was coming down the hall.

He grabbed me by the neck and lifted me up an inch or so off the floor and pinned me against the wall. I could breathe, but I couldn't get free.

"Why don't you pick on someone your own size."

I didn't point out that at the time he had a good foot and a half in height and over a hundred pounds on me.

He threw me to the ground in her room and made me apologize. Apparently, he felt that it was time for me to learn to be chivalrous and pay great respect to females.

It was clear to me after that incident that my father wasn't fully hinged.

He would get so angry.

His face is infused with many tiny capillaries near the surface of his skin, a trait I inherited, which, when he would get angry, would flush with blood and turn his face a terrifyingly bright red. He also has clear ice blue eyes and medium blonde hair. The colors of his face when enraged had the effect of warpaint on me as a child.

My sister and I were beaten so frequently and so savagely that we eventually turned to each other for support. It kept getting worse and we truly he was doing it out of sick pleasure. We began to fear that he would wake us up in the night just to beat us.

My sister and I actually started keeping knives in our rooms handily in case things got too crazy and we needed to actually do something. We talked about running away, but we knew that any adults we turned to would just give us back to my parents.

He only grabbed my neck that one time. He only pushed me once or twice. Mostly it was spanking with his bare hand. It was near the end that he spanked me a couple of times with a belt.

It did eventually end. My mother came to her senses and realized that my dad was out of control. I don't know what finally did it. Maybe the belt.

I remember they fought several times about it. I do remember she was threatening to leave him over the abuse.

I'm not sure exactly how long the escalated level of abuse went on. We were spanked since we were small, so it was always an option, but for a while it was really bad. I think it was more than a year maybe two that the violence was over the point where I think the term "abuse" is not only accurate but a fair representation of what was going on. I was somewhere between 10 and 14, I think.

And it then slowed rapidly and stopped.

I don't remember how things changed.

There are points in my childhood that are blocked out by extreme emotion. Things I only remember as stories people tell me happened because I was so angry, scared, or upset.

I do remember crying myself to sleep a lot even if I had not just been beaten. I remember I wet the bed even into adolescence.

Posted by Flibbertigibbet at September 18, 2006 09:15 PM | TrackBack
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