Hi, I've never told anyone this before and it has never been mentioned by the people involved, but I have been thinking about it for years and wondering if it was normal...when I was young (i'm not sure what age but i remember when it started I wasn't old enough to feel uncomfortable about it, but I got older and gradually began to feel more and more uncomfortable) my grandmother used to sit me on her knee and bounce me up and down pretending to be a horsey, while she did this she would pat my 'private' regions which she had a special name for and repeat the name, but like in a fun happy way, as if it was a game? I remember the last time she did it my dad saw and he told her to stop it, I remember feeling really uncomfortable and confused about what was going on and why she was doing this. I still don't understand why, I'm really confused, do you think it was just normal silly behaviour or?
I had quite a hard childhood aside from that (living in a house full of alcoholism, domestic violence, neglect etc) and always knew i had issues steming from those things, but i've always had a problem with sex and intimacy and a feeling that I've been repressing something, but that is the only memory I have of something happening that I think might be inappropriate. What do you think about that when you read it?
I can't ask anyone I know because I don't want to put it onto anyone. I'm a girl btw.
Your father obviously thought your grandmother's behavior was wrong since he told her to stop doing it. It is not "normal" for any adult to put their hands on a child's private parts and make up play names for that area. In my book, that is abuse.
Call it abuse, call it sexual misbehavior, call it inappropriate or anything you want. The label doesn't matter. The fact is that your grandmother took liberties with your person that caused you a great amount of discomfort. A child that young does not have the necessary skills to shout NO at an adult, so thank goodness your father acted like a father. No doubt you felt entirely helpless and that you had no control over your own body. Those are very powerful feelings to have (particularly in childhood), so it's not at all surprising that you find it difficult as an adult to completely trust an intimate sexual partner.
Since you do have problems with intimacy, I urge you to try a few sessions with a psychologist. You have something to say about what happened, and therapy is a safe place to do that. In that process, you should eventually be able to identify what behaviors trigger your negative response and gradually turn it around.
One of the saddest results of abuse are the sexual effects that carry over into adulthood. A healthy trust and sex life with a person you love is one of the greatest gifts we have in our lives. Abused children have a terrible time setting appropriate boundaries. Either they too easily accept people who are not going to be good influences, or they retreat from life and other people altogether. While the lessons of childhood can be difficult to unlearn, it's certainly not impossible - IF you're willing to do the work. :-)
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