Saturday, December 06, 2008

The year was 1985, and my parents decided to send my brother and I to Akron, Ohio to stay with my grandmother for the summer. My mother was working on her PhD, and I think my father was overseas somewhere, so it was just easier for us to stay with my grandmother. Staying there meant church EVERY Sunday, bible study on Wednesday, and bedtime by 9pm, even in the summer. I was 10, my brother was 7.

About halfway through the summer, my cousins Nairee(nicknamed ReRe) and Aaronette(both real names) came over to my grandmother's house for the day. They were my grandmother's nieces, and right now I don't feel like figuring out what that made them to me, the point is they were over my house the entire day, and I had a ball. ReRe was 16, and Aaronette was 17, and they just seemed so damn cool. They listened to rap music, they dressed in what seemed to be grown up clothing, and they weren't bound by the rules of my grandmother the way my brother and I were, and I was jealous. I doubt my brother was old enough to realize what was going on, but I knew that socially, my grandmother was holding us back and I didn't appreciate it; however, I was powerless to do anything about it, so I just watched ReRe and Aaronette and i was in awe.

Later that day, Aaronette and my grandfather left out, and it was just me, my brother, ReRe and my grandmother. My grandmother was fixing lunch, and she told all three of us to make sure we washed our hands within the next 20 minutes or so because lunch would be ready by then. My brother, being the kiss-ass that he was, went down to the basement and washed his hands first, then went back upstairs to watch tv. I went down in the basement and sat in the chair to play my football game for a little while, and ReRe came downstairs to wash her hands, but before she left the bathroom she asked me to come in there. I carried my football game in the bathroom, and said, "Yes?"

She asked me to put my football game down, and then she asked if I wanted to see something, and I said sure. Then, she took off ALL her clothes and asked me if I wanted to touch, and I said no. I was 10, and the thought of girls period let alone naked was not yet appealing to me, but she was persistent. She asked me to take off my clothes, and at first I said no and tried to leave but she didn't let me, so I just did it, but I remember I kept saying, "ReRe lunch is about to be ready", and she kept saying "I know, we're about to go back up". In reality only about 10 minutes went by, but it felt like an eternity. She got on top of me, and proceeded to have sex with me while I sat there. I dont remember if I "finished", but I do remember being scared, but I didn't cry, and I didn't get angry at all. It was an odd feeling.

Then my grandmother opened the basement door and yelled out that lunch was ready, and ReRe jumped up, put her clothes on, told me to hurry up and do the same, and then ran upstairs. But before she did, she grabbed my chin gently, said, "If you ever tell anybody about this, Imma beat your ass, and say it was your fault, you hear?". I just nodded and went back upstairs. I was as good at masking my emotions back then as I am now, so no one knew or suspected that she has abused me. In fact it pretty much stayed like that until about 2006-2007, when I was comfortable enough about this to talk about it. I dont know how or if this affected my sexual dealings as a teen or as an adult. I never abused anyone in return. I haven't had an unusual amount of least I think I haven't, and this hasn't turned me into a creepy dude. But I think about it from time to time, and it bothers me that I "let" it happen.

In 1992, I saw ReRe at my high school graduation party, and I stepped to her, and I said, "You know what you did was fucked up", and she acted like she didn't even know what I was talking about. I saw her again around 1995, and reiterated it, and she told me to get over it. By that time, she was 26, had about four kids, and she just looked like she had lived a hard life. I never knew if she abused me because she was just a horny, curious teenager, or if she was abused herself at some point. I suppose I could track her down and ask, but I never really felt like going through that red tape.

Why do I bring this up this morning? I have no clue, it was just on my mind, and rather than think about it for the millionth time, I decided to write about it. I hope I didn't scare anyone away.

Wayman Tisdale - Circumstance


soft and subtle said...

I'm totally surprised you told that story online for all to read. I remember when you told me that story and I thought how courageous you were to share something like that with me but to the internet world...Chief, you're really becoming transparent and that's cool. It's good to talk about events (good or bad) in our lives and be able to move forward and feel at peace. I'm going to drink some wine today and salute you in your boldness and transparency.

Miss. Lady said...

Not much you can say or do to scare me away. It was very brave of you to write about your experience, honestly I thought you accidentally posted it. Sorry to hear this happened to you. I will never understand how some one could violate any one much less a child in that manner.

This is why I talk to my kids. We have a list of people they can accept hugs and kisses from; we also do the good touch/bad touch talk.

Most importantly I let them know that no matter what any one tells them, if they are touched in the wrong manner then they need to tell me and I will have it taken care of...

Carmen said...

I appreciate you sharing this story.

I talk to my grandmother all of the time about our family background. I believe in generational curses and I want to know who did what and why.

I am glad that you have moved on from that.

Jazzbrew said...

Not much to add. You survived what could have been an extremely damaging experience and you get mad respect for that. I have no doubt that your honesty here will help others if they stumble on this post.

Anonymous said...

Things like this have a way of haunting you.

I was just sharing with a friend the other day how something strangely similar happened to me, and how i did it because i knew they wouldn't let me go.

Glad you confronted your demons.

LittleTortilla stays in DC said...

Thanks for sharing this. We all have stories to tell.