Siblings don’t believe me

Smile

MyPTSD Pro
A few months ago I finally found a T that is great. Has helped me clear up a LOT of memories which is what I need now.

I can now say for certain that I was molested by at least 3 different people. 2 of them I’m not sure about yet so I don’t & won’t say anything about them. But the 3rd I know for certain & it’s my father.

this has all happened within the past 3 weeks so my head is still in a whirlwind. Add to that, my niece got married 2 weeks ago & all but one of my siblings came in for it.

this was SO hard. My mom just told me that none of my siblings believe that dad did this. So with all of them here, I just kept/keep feeling so alone. Since then I’ve spoken to 4 of them & asked them straight out if they believe me. 3 pretty much said they believe something happened to me but not that it’s dad. Each conversation was gut wrenching and I promised myself I wouldn’t ask any more of them… at least not now. But I’m the youngest so they all knew him longer and I… I just need it.

the 4th sibling said they believe me. Yay. But not really because it’s one out of so many more. And the one I’m closest with doesn’t believe me and I just don’t feel able to talk to her. Not now.

of course all of this made me doubt myself all over again which is so upsetting because I’ve worked so hard in therapy to get past that. In my last session, the only way I was able to believe myself again was to go fully back “there”. my T saw what a toll it took on me and told me I should try to get to a place where I can believe myself without having to retraumize myself. Haven’t gotten there yet.

feeling so alone. So sad. Floating in the past with the present pullling me back every so often. Trying to ignore & forget it all by watching mind numbing shows.

Anyone been through this with family? Advice? Thanks
 

LittleBigFoot

MyPTSD Pro
Sort of. I have siblings who had different experiences with our parents. They tenuously believe me about some things, and then there’s the discounting that happens of well it wasn’t that bad for me so it must not have been that bad for you. Which is frustrating as well. There’s also things that one of them experienced that the others of us didn’t and it does get hard to believe them. Not that I don’t want to, but that that wasn’t how that parent/circumstance seemed to me.

But I do know siblings often, even if you’re close in age and are raised together, can very often experience different childhoods.
 

Livi

New Here
I have a similar pattern of 'discovering' my abuse as you have described. I am not sure of the who's and the what's but I know it happened. My realisation was six months ago. I don't think I would ever talk to my siblings about it because I think they have very different thinking about growing up to me. I think we have to believe our own truths and I am working on this self trust too. I don't have advice - But I can connect - You are not alone.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
I'm sorry your siblings don't believe you. That is traumatic in itself.

I have complicated relationships with my sister's. I haven't told them certain stuff and not sure it would help with getting validation or support if I did.

Do you think time for them to digest the news will help them believe you? Sometimes it can be a process for people to work through before they are able to accept. Especially if they experienced that person differently. (or if they themselves are denial about things).
 

Smile

MyPTSD Pro
I'm sorry your siblings don't believe you. That is traumatic in itself.

I have complicated relationships with my sister's. I haven't told them certain stuff and not sure it would help with getting validation or support if I did.

Do you think time for them to digest the news will help them believe you? Sometimes it can be a process for people to work through before they are able to accept. Especially if they experienced that person differently. (or if they themselves are denial about things).
Yes, some of them have said that. It just hurts. And I’m not even sure why
 

Mee

MyPTSD Pro
Yes, some of them have said that. It just hurts. And I’m not even sure why
Because it’s invalidating, potentially isolating. It can sow seeds of doubt and so has results akin to gaslighting. It impacts on self worth and a human need to be accepted by our ‘clan’ .

I think we could go on for the reasons why it hurts for sometime.

the fact of the matter is what ever people - even close ones- think - doesn’t change the truth. There are people who believe earth is flat - we don’t, most of us, dismiss the evidence of years of astronomical study and geography let alone satellite images Etc etc to let those people throw doubt on what we know.

Your siblings might not be able to handle the idea that things aren’t how they thought - not your problem. Or that they let you down - ( they didn’t they were kids).
 

LittleBigFoot

MyPTSD Pro
So I wanted to come back on here real quick. I disagree with the idea that your siblings are bad or intentionally invalidating you in someway through not fully believing. I don’t think it’s that simple cut and dry.

Parents can be really good at hiding abuse from others in the home.

Children can be really good at not seeing abuse happening- like they may have their eyes right on you watching what’s happening and still not register that what they’re watching is abuse.

They also may have blocked it out (common in trauma even just watching from the sidelines).

They may be protective of their relationship with that parent and be in denial and have a “saint” view of that parent.

They may be dealing with their own abuse, and you’re coming out may threaten their protection of that if they aren’t ready to be public about it and so deny outwardly.

Theres a million different things and while some can be harmful I don’t think any would be malicious or particularly invalidating.
 

Friday

Moderator
3 pretty much said they believe something happened to me but not that it’s dad.
I like your siblings. And you might want to rethink being hurt by their response. Because you now know that if someone they loved and trusted came to them saying you had abused them? Because their brand new therapist had helped them recover lost memories of you doing so? Your sibs wouldn’t just throw you -and decades of knowing you- under the bus without a second thought. Well, 3 of them wouldn’t. 1 might. Instead? They would believe and support the person coming to them, that yes they were abused; whilst still trusting what they know of you, and their own experience with you, and reserving judgment. That’s pretty badass.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
I think both things can be true. :
It is hurtful when someone doesn't believe you.
And
It can be unintended from someone if they don't believe, because of their experience of that person (abusers groom and hide) and/or they are in denial about something painful for themselves.

So it isn't necessarily someone being cruel by deliberately not believing. But the hurt that the lack of belief causes is still there. Still valid.

It's all a challenging process all round.

Doesn't mean things can't change and be worked through.
 

Sideways

Moderator
Started to open up to certain family members that I was dealing with some young trauma in my childhood.

Got told it would cost me my relationship with my family.

Thing is with these memories? As real as they are to me? Is exactly how real it didn't happen in their minds. My memories and their memories? Completely different, and inconsistent.

That's how memory is. It sux. It's incredibly isolating.

So, moving forward? My family isn't a place I can go to with support for that. That's shitty, but in the grand scheme, having to find supports outside the family is not the hardest part of what I've been through. More likely a shitty hurdle in the perfect recovery I had mapped out for myself.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
Of course they didn't believe me. There was, respectively 15, 13 and 10 years difference in our ages. I was born last, ten years after the last one. They had their own memories, and I was alone with my abuser by the time I was 5 as they were all married and gone.

The only thing we were all in agreement about was how he treated our mother. I think I had always felt so alienated from them that them not believing me was not surprising. They saw me being the youngest as privileged. As compared to their upbringing because the parents had more money with only one child. Not true at all. But that is how they saw it.

I've never counted on my family for anything. So it was a lesson in futility to ask them. But I have always had outside support. Friends when I was younger, T's thru the years, and of course being here.

It is crazy making and makes us doubt ourselves. But I continued my therapy with the mindset it DID happen and learned to trust myself. A huge benefit of them not believing me. So it all worked out.

I don't remember being hurt by them not believing me, it was only par for the dynamics of our insane family.
 
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