It took me a long time to remember that I was abused. In the year after my father died, when I was 53, I finally woke up to a memory that pointed to abuse (see related excerpt). How could those memories be hidden so long? I think there was both a push and a pull towards forgetting. The push was my family’s secrecy and silence. Both when I was a child and later, there was no space for my feelings or disclosures that could threaten my parents’ already shaky marriage.
But in that eccentric leftist family I also received much love and attention. There was never a question in my mind (as there is for too many children) that both my father and my mother loved me deeply and strongly. I tagged along after my father into factories where he fixed equipment. My mother played endless games of Parcheesi with me.
When the memories, many of them vague, began to return, I did daily battle with myself even to begin to believe that my father could have abused me. It made no sense… Read the rest of the post...