Liars

Hello blog readers, this is Julia.

I’d like to share a story from when the body was 16 years old. I’m going to write mostly from my personal memory, but not everything that happened was when I was fronting, so I’m going to mostly use “we”. I hope that’s not too confusing.

*Trigger Warning*

*Trigger Warning*

So this would have been in 1999, during our fourth hospitalization. We’d been discharged from our third hospitalization one day after attempting suicide (yes, we were still a patient IN the hospital…if you can figure out how that makes any sense, I will give you a prize). After trying to kill ourself, the psychiatrist from the facility told the parents that we “scratched ourselves” (that was 16 years ago and you can still see the scar running up our left wrist….some “scratch”. Fucking asshole.) He also told the parents to kick us out and let us fend for ourselves. The parents apparently didn’t think this was a good idea (although they eventually did kick us out for being gay) so they asked the mother’s parents if we could live with them. They said yes, so when we got back to town all of our things were at the Grandparents’ house. The mother’s childhood bedroom was now our bedroom. (Talk about repeating the cycle).

That lasted from Monday until Thursday, when I got really out of control and took all of our prescription pills and overdosed. We had to go to the Emergency Room (again) and this time the school psychologist (the person we now call “Mom”) helped us get admitted to the state hospital instead of being sent back to the private hospital that just discharged us even though I’d just slit our wrist open. The private hospital had been threatening to “send us to the state ward” which was apparently much, much worse.

Which, whatever, it wasn’t great, but it was better than the damn private hospital. The private hospital was fucking awful. There was essentially no supervision there. We did all kinds of shady stuff there. One time our roommate, Tricia, caught our hair on fire after River turned her in for smoking in our room (guess she forgot to mention where Tricia hid her lighter). We also had a lot of sex with other patients and did a lot of drugs. Sometimes other kids’ parents would bring us the drugs. Sometimes this one girl would sneak out through a broken window, get drugs from the streets, and bring them back. She was basically from the streets because her Mom was a prostitute who started pimping her out at like 3 years old. She was a tough bitch, but she never washed her hair. This was all just when we were a minor. There are even worse stories from when we were back in the private hospital at 18 (don’t worry, I will save those for another day..).

Anyway. During the first time we were at the state hospital, they did a “body scan” on us. This means they had us take all of our clothing off except our panties and they inspected our body for scars or marks or whatever else. I remember wearing a light blue robe during this ordeal. We had a large bruise on our left arm, but I hid it from the nurse with the robe. I remember that her name was Carolyn. I think she was uncomfortable with checking that part of my body because of my tits all hanging out, so she wasn’t paying close enough attention to notice I didn’t pull the robe down my left arm.

So a couple days later, a different staff member noticed the bruise. She asked where it came from. I lied. I told her that my “boyfriend” grabbed my arm while we were driving together. Why did I lie? Because the bruise was actually put there by the father. But the last time one of us told a social worker that our parents hurt us, the mother came to the (other) hospital and screamed at me in front of everyone. She called me a liar and said if I didn’t tell the investigator that I lied, they would take our little brother away and put him into a foster home where people would hurt him. So…when the investigator came, I told her that our parents were just “old fashioned” and believed in spanking for punishment. My siblings told a similar story so nothing happened. We fell through the fucking cracks, yet again.

The state hospital staff called the parents and asked if I had a boyfriend and if so, did this story sound “feasible”? The parents said we did not have a boyfriend at all. So then the staff decided I had bruised myself and put me on supervised showers. That means you have to shower with the curtain open and someone sitting on a chair watching you the entire time you are showering. It was awful.

This also planted the seed for us to be known as liars. Which means the staff started questioning the validity of everything we ever said. Including the fact that our neighbor attacked us a year earlier (at this point none of us had told anyone about anything else). But I had told the school psychologist that our neighbor attacked us and she told the parents, so this was a thing people knew about.

One day, shortly after the bruise incident, our hospital psychiatrist came into my room. I was sitting on my bed, reading. She pulled up a chair and then put her feet up on my bed. She said she wanted to talk about what happened with our neighbor.

At first she asked simple “yes” and “no” questions, which I answered because I was fronting during this attack. Then she asked for more details. I really did not want to talk about this, but it seemed important to her, so I kept talking. Then, once I told her that he made me suck him off, she stopped me. She said, “So you’re saying that he orally raped you?” I wasn’t entirely clear what she was saying, so I just blinked. She rephrased the question: “You’re saying he made you give him oral sex?….a blowjob.” Then I was like, oh right….yes. Yes he did.

So then she leans back in her chair and says, “Well if that’s the case, tell me what semen tastes like.”

I did not answer the question.

I don’t know why! Even as I sit here and type this, I can answer that question. But it caught me off guard me or whatever, I guess. Plus I felt confused because once she asked me that I wasn’t sure if she meant HIS semen or just semen in general. And let’s be honest, that shit varies. So I guess I was also thinking, “Well, it depends…” but I didn’t want to say that because I didn’t want to tell other secrets. I felt trapped. And scared.

That was that. She decided I was lying and she called me out on it right there in my hospital bedroom, her gross feet still on my bed, two feet away from me. She told the other staff and they wrote it in our chart. We weren’t allowed to talk about it anymore. It didn’t exist anymore. This violent rape become nothing more than a story told by a very manipulative teenager.

So from that day forward, we were liars. Every doctor and therapist we saw after that was told the story of our lies as a warning for our potential to lie. We were called “Borderline” and this apparently explained our “lies”.

At this point there was no one left to tell, but even if there had been, I sure the fuck wouldn’t have opened my mouth again. Nor would the Others. We’re not stupid. So we went nine years before talking again. Which meant nine more years of being hurt instead of being protected and taken away from those parents.

And it means that, even now, we can never trust that people believe us.

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33 thoughts on “Liars

  1. Katy Sauer says:

    I’m so sorry you went through that – not being believed is devastating. It reinforces so many of the negative beliefs about the trauma and is way of creating new trauma. I had a similar experience when I was in a state hospital as a teenager. It baffles me that supposed trained professionals would expect specific behavior out of victims of abuse – especially children and teens still caught up in it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Andi says:

      Thanks, Katy. And I’m so sorry this happened to you, too. I agree – it actually ends up making the hospital (which is supposed to be a safe, therapeutic place) into a re-traumatizing experience. It’s absolutely astonishing how much these people miss. Andi requested our medical records last year and the staff wrote that we were having “what looked like flashbacks” and “symptoms of PTSD”….so they KNEW we were traumatized, they obviously just refused to dig any deeper. Absolutely unacceptable. -Julia

      Like

  2. Boost Connection says:

    TW profanity.

    J-Dove, that shit makes me feel so much Hulk!rage that I want to invent a time machine just so I can go back to these horribly traumatic moments and cut a bitch’s face. FUCK YOU YOU EFFIN’ STUPID ASS STINKYFOOT!!!!

    It’s fucking disgusting that any human would act like that or be that clueless, but it’s especially offensive from a mental health professional in a psychiatric hospital overseeing children and adolescents. You fell through the cracks time and again, which makes me deeply sad and angry. I have ZERO patience or tolerance for people who abuse, misuse, or neglect their power over more vulnerable people.

    Thank you for sharing your story. It is completely understandable why you are fearful and mistrustful of people who are supposed to help you. Though you’ve been helped by some in small measures, you have been failed by so so many others. What I respect and admire is your resilience and determination to keep moving forward and surround yourself with high-quality people and professionals. You all deserve good things. ::sending positive healing vibes::

    Liked by 2 people

    • Andi says:

      I can’t even with your use of the word “stinkyfoot”. You really are the ultimate dork. Also, can you please be more clear about your contempt and disdain for incompetent mental health professionals? I’m not sure I understand how you feel about it? 🙂

      I don’t know if it’s resilience as much as survival, but I appreciate the vote of confidence anyway. You’re awesome. ❤

      – J

      Liked by 1 person

  3. kat says:

    yes i think this is common to us who go thru this…that we are made into liars, and that dismisses our need. i was made a liar too, but not in the same manner…not so harshly and drastically as you. but like you, i am just now beginning to trust providers again.

    im so sorry all this happened to you, and i hope you can start healing now.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sara J says:

    I hate everything that happened to you. I hate every single person who didn’t believe you, didn’t care, called you a liar, pathologized you, diagnosed you, hurt you, ignored you, traumatized and retraumatized you, and decided their version of reality was better and easier than the truth. I hate that these people probably did this to so many other vulnerable young people. I hate it so much, and I’m so sorry and I know I’ve told you this before but I swear I will always believe you. I love you.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Cat says:

    I listened to a lady talk on the radio recently who had lost her son to suicide, but not only had he committed suicide in a psychiatric ward, he did it in the room next to the nurses station when he should have been on 24hr watch.

    I cannot believe that silly woman asked what semen tastes like…WTF… and to judge you on a response, unbelievable. I have had similar experiences that left me feeling no one believed me, but the most important thing is that we believe ourselves. We would need to be pretty messed up to want to make any of this shit up in therapy… paying through the nose to talk shit, I doubt any credible Therapist would even consider that. I can assure you, I will always believe you

    Liked by 2 people

    • Andi says:

      Oh wow, that’s so sad. And so unnecessary.

      Yeah she was ridiculous. I can’t believe she asked me that, either. Very intrusive and triggering. She must have been absolutely certain that I was lying or else I doubt she would have risked upsetting me.

      Thank you for believing me.

      – J

      Liked by 1 person

      • Cat says:

        Hi J… She was very wrong to make that assumption and, in my view, unprofessional to ask what it tastes like. The fact she also lounged about with her manky feet up on the bed, further confirms that she is not a person you should take much notice of. She was wrong, not you

        Liked by 2 people

      • Andi says:

        Omg, manky is the best word! I’ve never heard that before! Yeah, it was super weird that she did that – seemed like an intentional way to encroach on my space and assert that SHE was the one in power, you know? Can you imagine how she would have reacted if I had the audacity to put my feet on her desk?! She’d probably lose her mind. Thanks, Cat. You’re cool!

        – J

        Liked by 1 person

      • Cat says:

        But think about it, Julia… there she is, approaching a teenager who has been defiled in a terrible way, and to help you feel at ease, she encroaches on your personal bed space with her bogging feet, she then asks the most inappropriate questions, that any reputable Psychiatrist would question today. The woman is an idiot and you should see her unprofessional and inappropriate judgements for what they are – a load of shit.

        All those little words are Scottish – Manky and bogging both mean dirty and filthy

        Liked by 2 people

  6. Zoe says:

    How dare these people not bother getting to the bottom of this and just write it all off as lying? That’s horrible and unprofessional. What happened was……. I can’t even believe our world still has sick people like these. Where are those meteors to strategically target their heads?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Andi says:

      I know, right?! I don’t think I even knew this was wrong until like a year ago or something. I just figured this is how people treated each other. Yes! Strategic meteors! I’m gonna need a lot, though….. 🙂

      – J

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Anxious Mom says:

    What a damn shame how the adults failed you all. People who can’t accept that such atrocities happen to kids should stay the hell out of the business, rather than setting the victims up for years and years of further abuse. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Andi says:

      It really is a shame. And I think you’re right – I think people just don’t want to accept the realities of child abuse so they just let it go on and on and destroy lives in the meantime. Very sad. Thanks ❤

      – J

      Liked by 2 people

  8. La Quemada says:

    I just read this and feel like I want to break something. How irresponsible can these doctors be? I thought (most) people went into psychiatry and psychology because they cared about the mental and emotional well-being of people. I thought they receive training in the high prevalence of sexual abuse, its impact on the victim, and the things families can do to hide it. Why did they all buy the parents’ story over yours? How irresponsible and unprofessional can they be? How can they even live with themselves?!

    At the same time, I feel so sad for and protective of the young girl who had no one on her side. No wonder it’s such a struggle to trust that a therapist would really be on your side! I so admire you though – your desire for healing and your courage are so strong that you risk being vulnerable anyway. It’s amazing, really.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Andi says:

      Thank you, Q. I wish I could answer that question. One would assume that if you enter the mental health field, it is because you want to help vulnerable people. Unfortunately, I think some people go into it to take advantage of vulnerable people, which is truly awful. I feel sad for that little girl, too. The work now is to integrate that the little girl is me and remain compassionate towards myself.

      Like

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