On Being Molested, Part 3

1eac_basic_webOn hard days, I still talk to my different parts. Most of the conversations happen late at night, when I can’t sleep. When ghosts try to enter the inner sanctum. When I am most vulnerable – at my most tired.

Tonight’s poem is from Part 3 of my book, Arms Akimbo: A Journey of Healing – Talking to the Parts:


Sitting Together

Sweet little girl
with your big eyes
and beautiful curls
what would I say to you
if we could talk
if I could hold you
hug you?
How would I comfort you
let you know I love you?
How special you were

Let’s sit together, OK?
What would you like to do?
I would say, wanting to give to you
the love that eluded you
because you were different from them.

Let’s play catch, you would say
as though doing so would make you
the happiest girl in the world.

OK, I would say.
C’mon, let’s go get the ball!

And we would play
you and I
and laugh—oh my, we would laugh
as the ball flew over our heads
under our legs
through our arms.
How joyous!

Then we would sit on the grass together
you and I
the little girl with the curls and the big green eyes
and the grown-up with the short graying hair and the big green eyes.
I would hug you
and we would laugh.

Then maybe you would grow quiet
and pull away from me.
What’s wrong?
I’m bad, you would say.
Daddy hates me
and he hates Suzie.
He hurt us.
He yelled at me.
He scared me.
I wanted him to go away
but he wouldn’t.
He was very mean to us.

I know that, I would say.
I bet it feels like he hated you both.
I felt like that a lot too
but you know what?
It wasn’t about him hating you
it was about him hating himself
and being mean to you because he couldn’t help it.
What he did was bad
very very bad
very wrong.
Someone should have stopped him.

You would start to cry
big wrenching sobs
breaking my heart
shattering it
making me hate him even more.

I’m bad, you would say.
I wanted to hit him
I wanted to be loud
I wanted Mommy
I wanted to call her
he wouldn’t let me.
Suzie hurt—lots.
She wanted me to yell
she wanted him to stop.
He wouldn’t stop
why didn’t he stop
why didn’t I stop him?
I’m bad.

You aren’t bad, I would say
taking you in my arms.
He was bad.
You couldn’t stop him
you were too little.
It wasn’t your job.
It wasn’t your fault
it was his fault.
It was all his fault.

This I would say to you,
such a beautiful little girl
with curly hair and huge green eyes.
I would look right into those beautiful eyes
green on green.
I would kiss you on your forehead
and stroke your hair
your beautiful curly hair
and I would tell you again—

You couldn’t have stopped him.
He needed to stop him
she should have stopped him.
It was a grown-up’s job to stop him
not yours
never yours.

On and on you would cry
tears of grief
tears of rage
tears of pain
for you
for Suzie.

Little girl
sweet little girl
your eyes shining with life
and tears.
You who light up a room
with your smile
you should not have to hurt.

Let’s go play ball.

About armsakimbobook

I'm a mother, a lawyer, a feminist, a writer, a potter, and an inveterate and unapologetic New Yorker. My book, Arms Akimbo: A Journey of Healing, tells of my journey of healing over a number of years, learning to live a full life after I was molested by my father at a very young age. I live in Maynard, MA, with my wife and and our two moose-cats, Samson and Hercules. My daughter used to live with me part-time, but she's all grown up now and in her junior year of college, which I can't quite fathom, since she was born about five minutes ago...
This entry was posted in Grieving, Healing, Incest, Poems, Trauma, violation and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to On Being Molested, Part 3

  1. Wow, this series of posts has been gripping and heart wrenching. This must have weighed you down for a long time. As this pain seeps from your body it will be a relief for you I hope. What you have done has taken a long time I would imagine to get out. Its a very hard thing you have done. I admire your courage. xx00

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My therapist has recently suggested me talking to my different, “parts,” as well…neat.

    Liked by 1 person

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