Hands Off

Today the sky is black as coal
My mind has crawled inside a hole
He took away my heart and soul
Please, lock him up with no parole

~~~

I was only eight and very shy
And was it any wonder why
I’d never scream; I’d never cry
When after, in your bed, I’d lie

~~~

I didn’t want to play his game
He told me that I was to blame
He left me with the deepest shame
I’d like to tell the world your name

~~~

What he did was so taboo
Tucked away and out of view
Thought you’d get away, did you?
Karma will tell false from true

~~~

This isn’t who I want to be
He stole my innocence; can you see
I couldn’t run; I couldn’t flee
Just get your filthy hands off me.

50 thoughts on “Hands Off

  1. This is your most powerful poem yet! And exactly what every abused child feel and needs to say. There is no excuse for child abuse….none. Sending healing thoughts!!!!!

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Ann. Your words and your healing thoughts mean an awful lot to me. I nearly didn’t publish this poem as I thought of it as more of a little ditty. I’m trying to work on an unsent letter to my abuser with a view of maybe, just maybe, sharing it on my blog. It’s proving more difficult to write than I thought it would. Although I’ve written nearly a page, it reads rather politely, and he doesn’t deserve me to be polite to him either in a letter, poem or my thoughts. The problem I have is that I don’t know how to express anger. I’m not comfortable cursing or swearing except for a few fairly mild words, and then I usually use asterisks to make the word less obviously offensive. Swearing got knocked out of me by my Nan (Mum’s mum), who threatened to wash my mouth out with soap if she ever heard me swearing! It worked. Perhaps, I’ll do a bit more work on my letter tomorrow. Thanks again, Ann, for your endless support, friendship and kindness. X

      1. I think the letter is a great idea, and you’ll do it in your own time and in your own way. You have friends who will support you through this, and I’m proud to be considered one of those!

  2. Ellie,

    I know you know now you have any and all boundaries you want for yourself to stay healthy—yet sadly at 8-yrs old children don’t understand that; they can’t. And I’m sure you verbalize those boundaries pristinely clear! 😉 And that’s your right.

    Yet I know the healing process is arduous and sometimes long when you are dealing with “demons,” so to speak, from long ago. That’s a completely DIFFERENT battle. I understand that totally; especially if the offender is gone, passed away. And that fact doesn’t make what is within your PTSD and other issues just go away when he is gone forever. I get it… I really do. 🖤❤️

    But I want you to know that your process of healing, particularly thru your writing/journaling(?), is seen (at least by me) as proper and good. Keep up the good work Madame! 🥰

    1. Thank you for your great level of understanding, Dwain. Your comments are always so profound and very reassuring. I appreciate your support of me while I’m on such a difficult journey. It means a lot.

      However, boundaries are still a big issue for me. I think having them smashed to bits by the perpetrator and then spending eight years with that emotionally abusive therapist a few years ago did nothing to improve my situation. I’ve written about her quite a lot in my much earlier posts. She behaved totally unethically and also obliterated any boundaries I might have built up at that time. Now, I’m not great at keeping boundaries; it’s something I need to learn more about to keep myself safe.

      With my current counsellor, clear and professional boundaries are in place, which I recognise as a good thing. There are no ‘blurred lines’ between us. Of course, I won’t know for two weeks whether I will be able to continue with her. I’m hoping upon hope that I’ll be able to, as the thought of starting over again with someone new fills me with dread.

      I’ve no idea whether my offender has passed away or not, given that he left the country before the police could catch up with him. He would have been quite elderly by now. Sometimes, I wish he were still here as I like to think (very unrealistically) that I’d like to tell him what he’s done to me, not that I doubt for one minute that he’d care as he obviously has no conscience.

      My writing is definitely helping with my healing path. I am fortunate to have so many lovely, caring, supportive friends here. I don’t know what I’d do without the support you all give me. I am truly so grateful. Sorry for such a long reply. Thanks again, Dwain. 💜💙💜

      1. No apology necessary Ellie. Keep plugging away and learn to trust yourself more and at your pace gradually build your self-confidence up. You do indeed have it in you. There will be good days and tough days, but you are getting there Madame! 😉

        You know how to reach me if need be. ❤️

  3. There is no need to swear to express anger, though verbally releasing a long list of all the cusswords you know can help you get that anger out, and then you might be able to better express your anger on paper.
    I personally do not look at anger as an emotion, but rather as a tool — like a hammer, or a axe! If you cannot sweet talk your way through a particular situation or event, just scream. Open up your mouth and release the sound. It is spiritually freeing, and healing.
    As for Nan, no matter how much you love her like her, dislike her, or hate ner she cannot control you anymore. SHE cannot hurt you anymore. She wii not wash your mouth out with soap. You are free to express yourself as you please. You have our permission.

    1. I was just in the middle of leaving you a reasonably in-depth comment, J, when my laptop decided to refresh itself and wiped everything I’d written off the screen! How annoying.

      Anger is something I find extremely difficult to express out loud. I’m hopeless at screaming even when there is no one to hear me. My counsellor suggested screaming into a pillow, but even then, no sound came out, and my face was buried in silence into the pillow. If I stood in the middle of a deserted field and tried to scream, no sound would come out there, either. The only way I can express my anger is in words. I’m so grateful to have this blog space to try to do that, and I’m even more thankful that my blogging friends are always so supportive and encouraging.

      I did love my Nan, although she said those things; it wasn’t till I was in my early fifties that my Mum told me that Nan used to beat her as a child! I was really shocked by this, as you can imagine. Mum never had any hugs, and when I grew up, there were no hugs between Mum and me. However, as she aged, she began to accept being hugged and was then gradually able to hug me back. Not sure why this last paragraph seems relative now that I’ve reread it. I guess there must have been an underlying reason. I wish my Mum were still alive as I have so many unanswered questions I’d like to ask her about referring to the years when my abuse took place. I’ll never have these answers now. That makes me sad and leaves a lot of unresolved feelings. Thanks for ‘listening,’ J.

      1. Listening is a lost art, especially for males brought up to “fix” everything. I was taught I had to fix everything, and to hug and comfort my siblings after my male parent beat them or whatever other abuse he could devise. Including sexually abusing my sisters after our mother died, though at that age I did not understand the horrors of sexual abuse, or I would have killed the bastard! (Sorry, memories popped up that needed to be expressed!)
        I bever got to hug my mother either, though I was allowed to sit in her lap so that my male parent could not touch me, but her protection ended when she had to go do other things. Still, it was something.
        As for the washing mouths out with soap, the first time it happened was the time I repeated some words I heard my male parent use. I regularly had a clean mouth after that, because I was a recalcitrant kid. Still am, truth to be told.

      2. Dear J., Thank you for sharing your experiences with me. I can only imagine the hell you and your sisters must have gone through in your younger years. And it’s perfectly fine to express your anger toward your male parent in any way you choose to—no need to apologise. I’m also sad for you that you never had hugs from your mother, too. Children need safe (and only safe) physical contact from their parents or caregivers; otherwise, it leads to all sorts of complicated attachment issues in later years. I’m not surprised you were a recalcitrant child under the circumstances. Quite understandable. Sorry if I triggered off unpleasant memories for you. I expect my writing may affect others in the same way, although it’s not intended to do that. It’s just me expressing my feelings and emotions because that’s what I need to do right now for the sake of my sanity.

      3. Your writing does bring back memories, but they do not trigger live feelings anymore, just the memory of how I felt as a child. They cannot and do not affect me anymore, except to love the child I was even more. He survived. He became me. I love myself. I do not live in fear anymore.

        Does that sound like a place you want to be? I hope so, because that is what you are working towards. That journey for me was almost as horrible for me as it was having to live through it, but I came through unscathed despite the scars. The scars are my badges of honour.

      4. I’m glad my writing doesn’t trigger off live feelings in you anymore, although memories are often painful, as I’m finding. I’m happy that you can embrace the child you were with love and no longer live in fear. Yes, I would like to get to that place, too, but I feel I have quite some way to go yet, as I’ve not long started my journey into [hopeful] recovery. It is an extremely painful and frightening route, but I hope to look back one day without all the pain and fear. When I wrote my piece, ‘Scarred’, I learned from others that my scars are my battle scars and that I can accept them as a sign that I survived all that happened to me. I’m beginning to do that with my physical scars, but the emotional ones are still so hard to bear. I will get there one day, although it’s impossible to say how long this will take, but hopefully, not too long. It’s not being helped by my counsellor being away for two weeks, leaving me in limbo as to whether I can continue to get help in this or not. It’s a scary place to be right now.

      5. Counsellors have one problem, they have their own lives to live. Having been an addictions counsellor, that was the one thing that bothered me the most. I was only allowed to see a client for one hour a week, even though I knew success was more possible if I saw them every day to encourage them to stick with their programs.
        This is the bane of those with needs, there are not enough counsellors to go around, and not enough money dedicated to really help those who need them. I had a few successes, but not enough to warrant the work I tried to do with the others. Success came from people who were able to keep themsekves going between sessions.
        That was a big ask, in my mind.

  4. Wow, so much power in these words. Left me speechless. Unfortunately, you speak for so many. He may have stole your innocence, but he’s the one with shame. You’re the one moving forward inch by inch, step by step. I hope getting these words out, serves as a healing salve. No matter what, thank you for sharing, for speaking up for those who can’t.

    1. Thank you for reading and being kind enough to comment on my post, Brian. I do find my writing to be cathartic; I hope it will be healing in time, too, although I recognise that I still have a lot of work to do on myself. I like to think my writing could, perhaps, help another abused person to be able to express themselves, too. However, I’m also very aware that my writing might also be triggering to those people who’ve been in my situation as a child. I’ve spent too many years, decades, in fact, being silent about what I went through. Now, I’m finding my place to speak out, even only through the written word. Thank you very much for your support, Brian.

      1. I’m glad you’re finding your voice. Yes, I’m sure it could be a trigger for some, but helpful to others. If I know anything about writing and emotions, though, you need to get it out. I’ve had some troubling experiences in my life … but nothing like that. As I mentioned, the piece left me speechless – careful too to make sure nothing I wrote would bring up additional bad feelings. I think the great thing is that you’ve found your spot to speak up about a horrible experience. Thanks for sharing and speaking up!!!

    1. Thanks for your encouragement, Granny. I find swearing nigh-on impossible even when I’m alone in the house (apart from the cat.) It probably would be liberating to be able to use my voice in that way, but I can’t even scream into a pillow let alone swear out loud. I can sometimes, do this in my head, but can never express those words out loud. Thanks for the offer of teaching me some new words – sounds interesting. Love you Xxx 💜💛💙

  5. Wow, I think this is your most direct poem and it hits like a slap in the face. The tumbling rhymes help remind me what a child you were. Lot’s of evil in the world. I often shake my head and wonder how people can be so monstrous.

    1. Thank you for reading my poem and leaving me a comment, Jeff. I was quite angry inside when I wrote it, so that’s probably why it came out as it did. There is, indeed, so, unfortunately, a lot of evil in the world, especially in those abusers who prey on young children. I will never know whether he’s dead, given that he deserted his home to return to his family in Trinidad before the police could catch up with him. Even if I knew that he was dead, it wouldn’t be any consolation as the damage is already done. I find writing as honestly as I do helps me process my feelings. Thank you for your continuing support, my friend x

      1. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that ‘slap.’ It must be hard when closure is elusive. I think ‘writing it out’ is the right thing to do. By sharing it, you erode it’s power over you.

      2. Thank you for your accurate understanding, Jeff. Sharing my thoughts helps a lot. I do worry about triggering other people who may have been through similar experiences, though. All I can hope is that by reading my writing, they will feel less alone with their own pain.

  6. I can only imagine how therapeutic this was for you. Please know that this is a masterpiece. It’s hard to find words for how powerful this truly is. I hope it helps you even more in your therapeutic journey through this to know that others who’ve been through the same could find comfort and healing through your words.

    I truly appreciate your bravery and your courage Ellie. It takes courage to face the darkest of atrocities. And to air it out in the open publicly, takes an even further form of courage. You’re truly a beautiful and courageous soul Ellie. Don’t forget to remember that while you’re facing this darkness. You’re already overcoming this awful atrocity Ellie. I can see it.

    Much love and healing hugs for you dear friend! 💖💖💖💖💖💖 💖💖💖💖🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗

    1. Thank you for your encouraging and generous comments, dear Christopher. You really are very kind. I’m not sure writing this piece was as much therapeutic as cathartic. It was somewhat of a release, which, although I still find myself in dark places, I felt able to write in this way. I seem to have written endless poems about my trauma, yet there is still so much more waiting to be expressed deep down in my soul. I write initially for myself, but then I also hope to give a voice to those less able to speak of their own ordeals. However, I do worry about my writing being a trigger for others who, perhaps, have been in the same place as I’ve been in my formative years.

      Thank you for thinking of me as brave, my friend, although I have to confess that I feel neither of those things quite yet. I wonder how much more writing I will need to do until I’ve purged all these really difficult and traumatic feelings from my mind and body. I guess I won’t know the answer to that question until I find myself in that space. Thank you as always for being there for me and I’m eternally grateful for all your support as I travel this emotional and painful journey. Hopefully, I will reach my destination before too long. Love and hugs for you, my friend … Ellie Xx 💗🌹💗🌷💗🌺💗🌹💗🌺💗🌷💗

    1. Oh, thank you, Devang. Your support means a lot to me. This poem was indeed hard to write, but it’s something that I needed to share to get my feelings out. Thank you for constantly being here for me x

  7. Thanks for reading and commenting, Sam. That last line is meant to convey fear as well as disgust. They’re the words I would have liked to have been able to say to my abuser as that terrified and damaged eight-year-old child, but couldn’t.

  8. Oh, that last line. Such powerful writing, Ellie. I truly believe there’s a special place for monsters him. A very very bad place. He deserves nothing less.

    1. Dear Bridgette, thank you for understanding how I feel. I’m naturally a very forgiving and caring person, but with ‘him’, I have no forgiveness. What he did was totally unforgivable and to destroy a child’s life, and continuing adulthood is plain wicked. Thank you for your kind comment – you have such a good awareness of where I’m at right now. It makes me feel less alone. Sending you my love and hugs. Xx 💗💞

    1. Thank you so much, Janet. Your words are comforting. Healing can take many years, even decades. I thought I’d dealt with some of this trauma, but here, at age 65, a whole load more memories have surfaced and I really didn’t want to be in this place at my age; albeit I hope I have many years to go yet. Sometimes, it’s hard to even think that. Thank you very much for your hugs. They mean the world to me and I so appreciate you taking the time to read my poems and for being so kind. Xx 💝

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