Wednesday, 29 August 2018

The Family Secret No one Knew But Me

CW: Sexual abuse

A small note:
My last post attracted some interesting feelings from acquaintances and readers. I asked why I wasn't hiding my identity. Well, the thing is that I was anonymous for many years (this blog is old). But when this blog became a little bit popular, especially when I was writing about current affairs, and I use Sen La'Noire as my 'internet name', I realised there was very little point in attempting to hide, and with Google monopolising everywhere, it was pretty easy to find my identity, so now, I am scared to write, and I don't write as often, but when I do, it is with greater consideration. Every time I publish a post, I feel I can stand behind it with firm confidence.

This post and the ones that follow hereafter are a series of posts that are part of a bigger plan. I am having difficulty in deciding whether to send copies of my academic achievements to my father, and I am hoping that this series of posts will help me untangle my past so that I can decide if I send him the copies, and send him link to these posts.

As a child, I always had a certain firm belief, and when I was angry I said loudly, and though I was laughed at by my siblings, it angered my parents. To me, it is still something that sounds a lot more realistic than the actual truth. You see, I always believed that I was either adopted or switched at birth (seriously), Perhaps it's an issue many other eldest children face but it was something, as a child, I believed in more than Father Christmas! I guess it grew from feeling like an outsider, looking in. I just didn't have anything in common with this family that I felt forced to live with.

I suppose when I think about it, it might have had a lot to do with deceit. On my part, and theirs. You see my father was quite violent towards my mother and I, but the world outside believed he was a good, well to do man, and he of course bathed in this; behaving like a gentleman outside and a brute inside. I was also holding onto a secret that I only opened up to my mother a year ago. It involves a sleazy 'uncle' in India.

Within the Indian culture, there is still a strong stigma attached to girls and rape/ sexual abuse, though they are the victims they are seen as bringing shame to the entire family and many are treated like they have the plague thereafter. In fact, when I told my mother what happened to me repeatedly, for a couple of years, her immediate reaction was not to tell anyone else for fear of shame. And she also wondered why I had told her. My paternal grandmother knew about it. She had caught him once, she told me not to tell anyone, and stopped his visits. He was her nephew, so it was even more important for her to keep it quiet. I was holding on to this secret for over 20 years. I wanted to write a letter to my father to tell him but my mother stopped me, fearing that if more of the family found out, it would affect my siblings getting married in the future. I felt like I had done something wrong, and this in turn made me realise that had I told my family what had happened to me 20 years ago, I would probably have been treated far worse.

Going back to my childhood though, I was fighting inner demons from the age of 8 and believed that while my other siblings seemed happy, they had grown fat on their happiness, whilst I had literally become weighed down and become fat on all the sorrow and hate.

This post is not for attracting sympathy. It is in fact a part of a series of posts that I am writing to my father, as well as you. I want him to know. I want him to see that despite all of this, I am not merely surviving by thriving.

Until the next post,

Sen x

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