Archive for March, 2012

Karen answers Jay

admin on Mar 26th 2012

Comment by Jay on 26 Feb 2012 at 5:01 pm

Karen,

I was arrested for child molestation twenty years ago and did my time. I served 7 years in prisin. Did my time. Spent 4 years on probation. Did my time. People are cruel and never let me live a normal life. I get dirty looks and no one wants to be my frend. If the police see me on the street they pull me over and ask what I am doing. What would you think if a past child molestor moves near you and you find out. I only abused 4 girls ages ten to thirteen. Three of those girls are maried with family,. One committed suicide. I tried to make frends with you on Face Book why not accept me?

Dear Jay,

I’m glad to hear that you served time for your crimes, but I personally don’t feel that you had learned the lessons you need to survive in the real world. You need to be monitored with an ankle alarm device. You are not well and I’m shocked that you were released from prison with the thoughts you shared with me. When you tried to justify your actions because “we are adults” I felt physically ill.

The reason I chose not to accept your friend request was because of the inappropriate content in the message you sent to me on Facebook. I felt insulted when you stated that children ask to be abused. You also referred to sexual abuse was a kind of intimacy, that you loved the young girls you raped, and that they felt good after the act and told you so. You said “ONLY 4 GIRLS” were abused. Not one girl is to be abused! Ever! You truly have a sick heart.

If you moved near me or anyone with children, I wouldn’t like it. I would make sure everyone in the neighborhood knew about you and watched you. I would like to see former abusers improve their lives with therapy, but I fear not all can change. In my personal opinion, based on your letter to me and this post, you are not healed nor show remorse for your actions. In my opinion, seven years of prison was not enough.

I encourage you to get help quickly and stay away from all children.

Karen

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Karen answers Patrick

admin on Mar 26th 2012

Comment by Patrick on 25 Feb 2012 at 3:50 pm

Dear Karen,

I’m finishing Switching Time, and I’d like to thank you for your courage in allowing it to be to be written. I want to know, maybe I’ll know by the end of the work, but was anyone except your father arrested for the terrible abuse you suffered? Sitting and reading, I am furious at these people and want them locked up, even if they’re 80 years old.

Dear Patrick,

Thank you for sharing your kind thoughts and compliments! I hope that in sharing my story it brings hope and healing to others.

Regarding those who were arrested for abusing me and other neighborhood children, yes, there were more than a few arrested, but sadly most were not charged due to their status in the neighborhood and the ties they had to those in public office. That’s one reason why it was difficult for me to share. Back then, adults were right and children were not. I was always told that my adult abusers would be let go, charges dropped, and in turn my abuse would be escalated once they were released. My abusers were ironically well respected in the community and I feared them. I felt unsafe and feared my abusers would kill me just as they threatened they would if I told.  I kept many secrets until I started therapy with Dr. Baer. That’s why I share my story, in hope that no child fears sharing like I did.  My abusers may have gotten away with what they did to me during my childhood, but they died without making amends and without peace. I have forgiven them and let go of that so that I could live. It’s not my job to judge.

Thank you for your questions; I empathize with how furious my abusers made you.  Thinking about it again infuriates me, too!

Karen

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Karen answers Sonya

admin on Mar 26th 2012

Comment by Sonya on 25 Feb 2012 at 3:00 pm

Hi Karen,

I can see that you don’t answer questions immediately so I will ask here and on Facebook. I know you share and don’t mind answering questions, but is it difficult to step back and answer questions about your past? How much is too much, and why does it take so long for your to respond?  Do people like us upset you?

Dear Sonya,

It’s true that my questions take a bit longer to post here, but that’s due to the volume and the time it takes to answer and post them. I don’t mind answering questions at all! I actually enjoy helping others. Back during the time I was in therapy I didn’t have a place to vent or ask questions, so it’s my desire to encourage hope in the best way I can through this blog, Facebook, and my email. I do my best to keep caught up, but sometimes life gets in the way. I don’t think about how much is too much… I just do it.

These days I have been taking a class, volunteering in many areas, and working on writing a sequel to Switching Time. But most of all, I’m enjoying living a life I once thought impossible.

Thank you for caring and for being patient about receiving an answer from me. I care and never get upset with anyone who writes me.

Wishing you all my best!

Karen

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Karen answers Ruby

admin on Mar 22nd 2012

Comment by Ruby on 21 Feb 2012 at 10:27 pm

Hi Karen. I am reading the story now, (haven’t finished it yet so don’t spoil it-  & I just want to say I am deeply moved by your story. I am a recent graduate who graduated in psychology & I have always known that I have wanted to work with individuals that have gone through trials & tribulations & your story makes me want that even more. I am sure you are such an inspiration & I wish you the best of luck with everything. God bless!

Dear Ruby,

How nice of you to share your thoughts before finishing my story! I’m touched and hope that you share more thoughts when you’re finished. I admire your decision to work in the field of psychology.  Good therapists are most certainly needed!  I was fortunate to find the right therapist for me.  Dr. Baer is the best! I can’t imagine where I would be today without his care. I’m blessed.

Please know that working with patients like me can be both exhausting and inspiring. I know for sure Dr. Baer had a hard time, and at times was overwhelmed. But I thank God everyday that he never gave up on me. It was the best relationship I ever had and surely set me on the right path to move forward in my life. I’m glad you shared your thoughts and can tell your heart will be in your work, which in turn means you will have a rewarding career.

Thank you for your best wishes and blessings! I truly appreciate hearing them.

Karen

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Karen answers Bethgayle

admin on Mar 19th 2012

Comment by Bethgayle on 21 Feb 2012 at 1:48 pm

What happens to you when you feel down now? Are you cured? Are you still in therapy? If you are or need therapy again what would be your focus? Do you like yourself? Your book was awesome.

Bethgayle

Dear Bethgayle,

I admit, there have been moments when I felt down, but I try my best to acknowledge where my dark thoughts come from and then do something about those thoughts. If my down thoughts come from my past, I change my thoughts to my present.

Healing from any type of abuse is a life-long journey.  It’s important to stop for a moment and think of where your ill feelings are coming from. That defuses your pain and allows you to move forward.  “Cure” is a strong word that I never use. No, I’m not cured. There is no such thing as cured. It would be impossible for me to think I’m cured. I do my best to move forward and keep abuse free but truthfully…reality makes things difficult at times. For me, staying on the side of reality keeps me focused and well. If I should start to fall back and regress I would most certainly seek help. My focus would most likely be co-dependency and people pleasing.  At this time, I’m proud to say that I love who I am. I hope to always love myself and stay well. It’s also important for me to forgive myself.

Thank you for your kind compliment,

Karen

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Karen answers Emma

admin on Mar 19th 2012

Comment by Emma on 20 Feb 2012 at 7:20 pm

hi thank you so much for being so brave and sharing your story. I also have DID I was diagnosed only a year ago after 8 years of misdiagnosis and really bad therapists and docters. Your story helped give me some hope for the future maybe one day I won’t be such a scrambled mess. Thank you.

Dear Emma,

You’re welcome! Thank you for your kind thoughts and compliments! I’m glad to hear you’ve finally found the right therapist for you. I remember early in my therapy I was misdiagnosed too!  It’s hard for any doctor to diagnose multiplicity.  A good therapist will take his or her time and not jump to a diagnosis until all facts are laid out in front of them.  Only then can your therapist be sure, to the best of his or her ability, how to assess your problems.

Finding the right therapist will help you on the right path of healing, and remember, a good therapist will not tell you how to feel or what to do. That’s not the job of a therapist. A therapist simply guides you to help yourself.

Wishing you all my best as you continue your journey to wholeness.

Karen

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Karen answers Kieran

admin on Mar 19th 2012

Comment by Kieran on 20 Feb 2012 at 4:47 am

Hi Karen,

I live in Sweden and found this site after reading your book. I have relations in California and she sent me Switching Time to help me with my healing. At first I felt insulted but read it anyway. I am in AWE of you and let it be known your sharing here is just what I needed to seek help for myself. I had many confused thoughts and did not know what to do with them. I was ashamed to talk to a therapist and thought I would wait until I felt better first. What I thought would destroy me has now given me hope. Thank you. You have saved my life. If you can do it, so can I. Do you ever feel threatened by people who criticized you while you were healing? Is there a secret to your strength?

Good day!

Dear Kieran,

Thank you for sharing! I can see how you may have felt insulted having a friend gift you a book that may have triggered unpleasant feelings, but I’m glad you chose to read my story despite that. My story may be a harsh read at times, but it is also a story of inspiration and survival. I’m glad to hear that your confused thoughts settled down. That’s one of the reasons I chose to share my story–to help those who needed a clear understanding of what multiplicity is and give the hope that comes from healing. Early in my therapy, I felt ashamed and didn’t want to tell my therapist for fear of being judged.  But once we built rapport, trust followed, and I felt I could share without embarrassment. I waited a year or so too long and found that I was being naive to assume Dr. Baer couldn’t handle me. Then one day Dr. Baer said that there was nothing I could say that would change the way he thought of me. It was then I knew I could trust him and started to let go of my feelings of shame. It was at that time my healing truly started.

There is no secret to my strength other than to share with a trusted someone, let go of your pain of the past, and look towards your future while staying grounded in the moment. I no longer allow myself to feel intimidated by toxic or pessimistic people. I believe those who criticize me are the ones in need of help.

I’m glad to know you now have hope! Please keep in touch!

Wishing you all my best!

Karen

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Karen answers D.K.

admin on Mar 8th 2012

Comment by D.K. on 18 Feb 2012 at 12:59 pm

Hi Karen,

I noticed there was a previous question regarding your intimacy in the sex department. I am curious about that to. Do you find dating a challenge? Are you dating? What happened the first time you had sexual relations after integration? Think of my asking as curious minds want to know and not intended to be an insulting inquisition.

Dear D.K.,

Please see my answer to Jack’s question. In addition, I do not find dating a challenge, nor do I shy away when asked. However, I do not search for intimacy. I find that I don’t need it, and though I would love to meet someone, dating is not a high priority for me. I’m happy to be just me and if the opportunity should present itself, I’m willing and able to enjoy a date.

Regarding sexual relations after integration, that’s personal and though I do not mind sharing my life, there are some things that one needs to keep private, and this is one of them. But I can share that it is possible to find pleasure after abuse. My abuse happened in my past. I choose to live in the present.

Thank you for your question.

Karen

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Karen answers Bendito

admin on Mar 8th 2012

Comment by Bendito on 16 Feb 2012 at 4:09 pm

Hi karen.

I finished reading your book and my question is do you think you were addicted to abuse? When you went from being an abuse ridden child to an abused wife did it seems that being abused was a comfort to you or was there another reason you think you found yourself yet again in a similar scenario?

Dear Bendito,

No. I do not think I am or was ever addicted to abuse. My relationship with my husband was once wonderful. My being abused by my husband came many years into our marriage after I became ill and he turned to alcohol to console himself. As his alcohol consumption increased he became verbally abusive first, then when that didn’t seem to affect me, he turned to physically abusing me. When my husband was not under the influence of alcohol he was kind, funny, supportive, and a pleasure to be around. When I met my husband, he appeared to be totally opposite of my father. That’s what attracted me to him. I never felt my husband would abuse me. Sadly, chaos and my illness caused pain that he could not deal with, so he changed. He had a choice and made the wrong one. He never sought help for himself.

Please know that as a once victim I tried my best to search for someone not abusive, but sometimes it’s hard to spot a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

Thank you for your question,

Karen

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Karen answers Jack

admin on Mar 8th 2012

Comment by Jack on 16 Feb 2012 at 3:51 pm

I have a frank question and without meaning to insult you would like to know if you ever recovered sexually after the horrific abuse you suffered? Do you fear intimacy? Have you been sexually active since integration of your many parts? If you are, how is that going for you? I would love to hear that all is well and forseeable. My heart aches after reading your book. I hope you find happiness with a nice man who sees past your past and accepts the amazingly blessed woman you are. Blessings to you.

Jack

Dear Jack,

Nice of you to ask these questions in the respectful way that you have.  I’m not offended. Though I do understand how one may wonder about my finding intimacy after hearing my story, it’s important to know that there is recovery when one chooses to let go of the past and live in the present, while looking forward to a future free from being a victim.

Regarding recovering from sexual abuse. Yes, I have. I do not connect my past experience of being sexually abused to my present life experiences. I do not fear intimacy and look forward to meeting and engaging in pleasant experiences. All is well and it’s important for me to find relationships that are built on respect, love, and caring. I do not engage in demeaning or toxic relationships. As far as whether I’ve met someone special, not yet, but that does not mean I don’t look forward to meeting someone who will compliment my life.

Experiencing love after being abused is possible.

Thank you for caring… and for your blessings.

Karen

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