Thursday, August 28, 2008

Dreams after Rape

That's right I said dreams. Of course I have had nightmares about the organism, which I have yet to write about, but I have had many dreams. The reason for this post is that I dreamt of it last night.

So here it goes...........

I was speaking to the organism and telling it how sorry I was that it was put into this position. I explained to the organism that I did not press the charges and I actually told it I loved it.

Later the dream broke off and the organism was laughing. It had recorded everything I said and due to the fact that I said I was sorry and that I loved it, now it was going to appeal.

My dream then went to me in a panic with my state attorney and my victims advocate trying to figure out if an appeal was possible. I was scared, the state attorney and victims advocate were frantic and I was to blame.

Then my dream flashed to me and the organism sitting in bleachers with a bunch of people we knew although I did not recognize any of them. They invited myself and the organism to go. The organism told me I was going. Everyone got up and left and I headed the other way. The organism was following the crowd but when it noticed I was not there stopped and looked up where I was hiding behind a wall. The organism kept watching throughout the rest of the dream with a possessive look.

That's where it ended....

Now me taking a good look at that I see guilt, betrayal, and great deal of accountability. Guilt being the main issue.

Any other takes?


Victoria Placeo

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Great Story To View Rape- Understanding the Violence of Rape

I was looking through articles and found this by William Cottringer entitled Understanding the Violence of Rape:

Understanding The Violence of Rape

By

Bill Cottringer




"Liberty without love is destruction; love without liberty is despair." ~Thomas Troward.

Earlier in my career as a prison administrator, when I was just beginning my learning curve on understanding the hard core problems of life in general and crime in particular, I was quite open to radical solutions to extreme problems. For example, dealing with the violence of rape therapeutically.

While wearing my other hat as the prison psychologist in Victoria, Australia, I tried a such a radical approach to dealing with the horrific and permanently scaring crime of rape. During my prison career I had always thought rape to be the worst possible crime because the victim had to take the trauma of the unforgettable personal violence and painful intrusion to her grave. Not only that, but the crime of rape has such an unfair stigma that it adds a second level of pain in spreading shame and blame about the shame and blame. That is unnecessary unfairness that can't be thought or felt away.

At any rate, I experimented with the unthinkable danger-bringing rapist and victim together for a therapeutically-guided, assertive confrontation. In looking back, I really wasn't at the level of understanding I am now to make sense of the good results I got from this potentially volatile, very risky approach. But now, after years of living and understanding all the main bleeding in life, I am at a point to share my deep understanding of the violence of rape. I hope this will mean something to the brave people out there who have either been through this unthinkable experience or those who are trying to use their counseling skills to intervene for successful outcomes.

Now go back and reread the opening quote. I just read it a few days ago in a book written way back in 1913 by Thomas Troward called Bible Mystery and Bible Meaning. For me, I have always been a fan of trying to understand the deep metaphorical meanings of troublesome mysteries of living and this quote uncovers a very core understanding of all major derailments, including the violence of rape.

If we dissect the words of this quote, things will become clearer. First of all, I believe one could make a very reasonable case for us all to have one main purpose and drive in life, which we all put our own private spins on, getting much different results. This fundamental motive is to learn, grow and improve in our ability to use our freedom responsibly in the pursuit of loving and being loved. The problem comes into play with how we define these two key words love and liberty. There are probably as many different definitions and interpretations as there are people.

Let's consider this simple explanation in reverse order:

Liberty = Using our gift of free will to discover the rules of being successful in life and making the right choices to be successful in getting what we want most of all, including the things we believe will collectively result in that ultimate sense of satisfaction of "winning" the grand prize.

Love = What we really want most of all; but what it is, isn't really clear because it shows up in so many different forms, or at least we have created so many words to try and understand it better.

Only when we truly understand these two words, can we unleash the real power that we have to be successful in getting anything and everything we want (as promised by the ‘Law of Attraction' in ‘The Secret'), instead of misusing and abusing it in destructive ways, getting everything else that the rules of the game of life pre-established (Karma). And the only way to understand these two words is to see how they have to work together to produce the profound meaning of the quote above by Thomas Troward.

We will never begin to understand and deal with serious problems like the violence of rape until we learn to step outside of the creative thinking process we are part of and can't see because we are too close to it. We are all seeking wholeness-especially between our minds, bodies and spirits-but the road to that place first involves taking things apart to better understand them so we can make the best choices. This is the justification of meting out harsh punishments to criminals, because they deserve it at that level of understanding and that is the only way to stop it. Of course, criminal justice professionals should think that such punishment is of any value to deterring or treating this extreme behavior.

However, this part of the journey involves the "dualism" that leads us to believe in completely separate realities between all the "opposites" we have divided in life-all the good and bads, right and wrongs, love and hate, freedom and control and all the other this and that's that are "warring" against each other in our minds and hearts.

Sooner or later though, we have to put things back together that we split apart, in reconciling how two opposite appearing things are really different sides of the same coin. This is how our minds evolve in grasping the real truth of what we encounter, so it is a good idea to try and understanding how we think and how we arrive at the accuracy of what we think is or isn't so. But it is very difficult to talk about this all in any practical or meaningful way, hence the common misunderstanding. And if I were to openly claim that such a things as evil rape was just misguided love with the reckless use of liberty, I would be stoned.

The real problem with understanding the violence of rape is that we have the opinion that there are very real extremes in good and evil and when someone does something we think is evil, we ascribe that evilness to the whole person. That makes it impossible to understand or cure.

In understanding human motivation to its fullest, the usual conclusion is that we are all wanting to use our freedom to get all the things-happiness, power, security, recognition, acceptance, material comforts, and success-that will ultimately satisfy us in having the one thing anything "good" brings, that being the single driving force in the universe, growth-creating love energy.

From this reasoning, we can see that liberty without love that results in awful destruction, is really just uninvolved, incomplete liberty and love. From there we have to separate our thoughts and feelings away from the people doing or receiving the destruction and take a closer look at the conditions that shaped the dreadful chain of events-the conditions that lead to a despairing sense of lacking power, acceptance and love leading to such an extreme destructive misuse of freedom to get those things illegitimately and harmfully, leaving a wake of destruction behind.

These conditions are what we need to understand and correct for the better so we can all have what we really want-love and liberty in concert. And only then can we begin to become successful in understanding why that one rule leads to the discovery of the other rules of life to be successful in landing in the Land of Abundance.

There is an infinite surplus of love and freedom to go around many times over, and that is the challenge before us-understanding why some people either don't have it or don't see that they do, and helping them get it. The best start is to listen to the stories on both sides of the fence of ‘liberty without love,' and the devastating impact it has on us all, without judgment of the person telling the story. This takes a higher consciousness than we are used to calling on, so you have to dig deeply inside to find that level of empathy and understanding. But it is the only way to begin to make sense out of any type of violence.

William Cottringer, Ph.D. is President of Puget Sound Security in Belleview, WA. And also a business and personal success coach, sport psychologist, photographer and writer living in the mountains of North Bend. He is author of several business and self-development books, including, You Can Have Your Cheese & Eat It Too, The Bow-Wow Secrets, Do What Matters Most, "P" Point Management, and Reality Repair coming shortly.


This article is phenomenal!! It is so true about Liberty and Love. I don't know what more I can say then Bill, Great Job, and I believe that your article may bring at least some peace to many!! Thank You!!


Victoria Placeo

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Rape and Victims Assistance

In my situation the state pressed the charges against the organism. So the Crime Victims Advocate signed me up for the Victims assistance on May 19, 2008. Yes on May 19th, I have recieved no assistance yet.

Now I know that the Victims assistance if a great program and for those who are not familiar with it here is a brief explanation of what victims assistance is in my state.

The Crime Victim Compensation Program is for individuals who have suffered personal injury from a violent crime. The compensation Program helps victims with out-of-pocket expenses related to injuries from violent crime, and it is funded entirely by fines and penalties paid by criminals (not by taxpayers).

People who are eligle are:

Victims physically or emotionally injured in a violent crime in my state

Victims of drivers or boaters injured in crimes of intoxication, hit and run, recklessness, vehicular homicide or the use of the vehicle as a weapon.

A victim’s spouse, children, parents, siblings, and person(s) residing in the household at the time of the crime.

Survivors of a homicide victim.


In my state:

You must report the crime to local law enforcement within 72 hours, unless there is a just cause for not doing so.

You must apply to the program within 2 years of the date of the crime, or show good cause for the delay.

You must NOT have consented to, provoked, or incited the crime.

You must NOT have been attempting, assisting or committing a criminal act causing your injuries.

They say it takes about 8 weeks to determine program eligibility. Payment will be made when all required information is received, my information was recieved in June and still nothing. However, once payment has been made, the program does seek restitution from the offender, unless it would threaten the safety of the victim.

Here at The Office for Victims of Crime is a list of Victims Assistance Programs from state and state.



Victoria Placeo

Monday, August 25, 2008

I FEEL BAD!!

There was no post yesterday, I feel bad. I feel horrible.... what do I mean?

I feel alone
I feel angry
I feel depressed
I feel suicidal (believe in Hell so I am safe on that one)
I feel like I have lost everything
I feel worthless
I feel ugly
I feel unlucky that I lived through the incident

Nough Said!



Victoria Placeo

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Prison Rape

So I'm going to break of me for this one an address the issue of prison rape. Occasionally, it helps me to look at the issue of rape from another perspective so here we go....

I was reading an article I found on chron.com from the Houston Chronicle entitle and here it is:

Report advises how to prevent rapes in prison

5 Texas facilities are on list where sexual assaults appear to be most prevalent

By BILL MURPHY


Rapes in prisons could be greatly reduced if prison staff adopted a zero tolerance attitude toward such crimes and developed a system that identified and protected inmates who could be potential victims, according to a report released Friday by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Recommendations made in the report were intended to aid prisons where rapes appear to be most prevalent, including five state prisons in Texas, said the report by the federal review panel on prison rape.

Inmates were surveyed at only 146 of the state and federal prisons in the U.S. Of these, the Texas facilities where sexual assaults were most prevalent were state prisons: Clemens in Brazoria County, Estelle in Walker County north of Huntsville, Allred, Mountain View and Coffield, the report said.

But the federal review panel's recommendations will have little or no effect unless prison staffs take them seriously, the panel said.

"Unless zero tolerance is clearly and repeatedly conveyed from the top down, the best (federal Prisoner Rape Elimination Act) policy will be little more than a paper facade," the panel concluded.

The act, passed by Congress in 2003, required that statistics be gathered annually on the prevalence of inmate-on-inmate and staff-on-inmate sexual assaults in prisons.

Last year, an arm of the Department of Justice — the Bureau of Justice Statistics — made its first attempt at complying with the law by conducting a survey of randomly selected inmates at a limited number of facilities. The inmates were asked to report whether they had been sexually assaulted in prison in the previous 12 months.

At Estelle prison, 16 percent of the inmates who took part in the survey reported being sexually assaulted — the highest rate of any prison that took part in the study.


Clemens unit on the list
Clemens prison had the second-highest rate, with 14 percent of inmates reporting that they were sexually assaulted.

The three other Texas facilities rounded out the top 10 prisons with the highest prevalence of inmates who said they were sexually assaulted. Allred's rate was 10 percent, Mountain View's 9.5 percent and Coffield's 9 percent. Mountain View is a women's prison in Gatesville, about 40 miles southwest of Waco. Allred is in Wichita County, and Coffield is in Anderson.

Of the 23,398 inmates at 146 state and federal prisons who responded to the survey, 4.5 percent reported they had been been sexually assaulted.

Michelle Lyons, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, said in an e-mail that the department "has a zero tolerance policy against sexual encounters of any kind within the prison system and recognizes the importance of educating offenders about sexual assault and abuse. The Safe Prisons Program is in operation at all TDCJ correctional facilities, including the five units specifically cited in this study."


Panel created by law
The Prisoner Rape Elimination Act also required that a panel be established to review the survey findings and lay out why sexual assaults are prevalent in some prisons.

In its report, the panel said prisons could take steps to reduce sexual assaults:

•They should assess whether incoming inmates will be at risk of being sexually assaulted or could be a risk to commit a sexual assault. Prisons can segregate potential victims and perpetrators of sexual assaults based on risk assessments.

•They can install videocameras in areas where assaults are most likely to occur, including isolated areas of kitchens, laundry rooms, shower rooms and cells of inmates at risk of being victims or rapists.

•Those who investigate sexual assaults should be independent of the prison system.

•Prisons should reduce overcrowding and maintain proper staffing levels.

Many victims are small and young, have spent little or no time in prison, are serving time for a non-violent offense and are not a member of a prison gang, the panel found. Gays and transgenders often are targeted.

Those who commit sexual assaults often are bigger inmates who share cells with smaller ones, the report said. They often have a history of sexual violence or general violence and often have served time on several occasions.

Lyons said a number of the panel's recommendations are already TDCJ policy, including assessing newly arrived inmates to determine whether they are at risk of being raped or committing rapes.

Lovisa Stannow, director of Stop Prisoner Rape, a human rights organization, praised the panel's report, saying it suggests that sexual assaults can be greatly reduced through effective management policies.

"Sex abuse in prison is preventable," she said. "In a well-managed prison, you see low levels of sexual abuse. In poorly managed prison, you'll see high levels of sexual abuse."


OK....my first thought before reading the article was GOOD IF THEY ARE IN PRISON THEY DESERVE IT. That was the angry rape victim in me. I had the terror of recalling my incident and then thought no one deserves that.

And then... I went back and forth and back and forth and then said Victoria just read the damn article!

After reading it, if it is true that most prison rape victims are smaller, non-gang members, gay, or transgender taken over by larger violent inmates, then it must be stopped.

I agree that they should segregate the violent crime offenders from the rest.

Now, the reducing overcrowding, don't like it. Why, because of overcrowding, my organism sentence automatically got reduced.

My fix....

First, BUILD MORE PRISONS, WE FREAKIN BUILD EVERYTHING ELSE WHY NOT MORE PRISONS!!

Second, group all violent crime prisoners together,the rapists, murders, child molesters, etc. Hey, they all seem to like hurting people, THEY SHOULD GET ALONG JUUUSST FINE!!

Finally, bring Joe Arpaio in on this, HE'LL KNOW HOW TO GET THE JOB DONE!!




Victoria Placeo

Friday, August 22, 2008

Rape and Hair Loss?

Since the incident I have been losing hair. Instead of it lessening it seems to be getting worse.

When it first began my doctor said it was because the organism pulled my hair. The doctor said that sometimes the scalp separates a little from the skull, leaving the scalp spongy and could cause hair loss.

Since then it has continued to get worse, now the diagnosis is emotional trauma and stress. I tried to research Rape and Hair loss and found nothing, but I did find this at www.follicle.com:


Telogen Effluvium
Sudden stress relate hairs loss which appears as thinning throughout the whole scalp

Telogen Effluvium occurs when sudden or severe stress causes an increase in the shedding of the hair. In Telogen effluvium a sudden or stressful event can cause the hair follicles to prematurely stop growing and enter into a resting phase. The hair will then stay in the resting phase for about 3 months after which time a large amount of hair will be shed. Often the person involved will have recovered from the event before the hair loss occurs. In most cases the hair loss is temporary and the hair soon recovers. However in some cases the hair loss continues until the underlying cause is fixed. Telogen Effluvium appears to affect more women than men because more of the precipitating event such as childbirth are experienced by women.

Temporary hair loss can be caused by:

Child Birth
Pregnancy Termination’s
Starting or Stopping Birth Control Pills
Dieting Drug
Therapy
Severe Emotional Stress

Hair loss after Child Birth

It is quite common for some women to experience some hair loss approximately 3 months after childbirth. This hair loss is triggered by the sudden changes in hormone levels.

Some statistics suggest a 20% of mothers lose hair during childbirth and others suggest a figure closer to 45%. Fortunately in most cases the hair will return to normal 9-12 month after the child’s birth.

Many woman notice that their hair is thicker and healthier during pregnancy, this is due to the increased levels of hormones oestrogen and progesterone which cause more hairs than normal to remain in the growth phase. When the child is born however many of the hair follicles that had delayed entering the resting phase suddenly enter the resting phase due to the rapid drop in hormone levels. As a result of this these hairs are then shed about 3 months after the birth.

Hair loss resulting from Pregnancy Termination’s

Similar to the way in which sudden hair loss can occur after childbirth sudden hair loss can also occur after and abortion or miscarriage which the hair loss is triggered by sudden changes in hormone levels. Hair that has remained in the growth phase due to increased hormone levels will suddenly enter the resting phase and will be shed approximately 3 months after the event.

Hair loss resulting form taking the Birth Control Pill

Birth control pills affect the hormone levels within the body and these hormone levels can affect hair growth. In some cases hair thinning may occur due to the male hormones present is some types of contraceptive pills, this type of hair loss is similar to pattern baldness or Androgenetic Alopecia. However discontinuation of The Pill can result in hair loss similar to that which occurs after child birth due to the drop in hormone levels.

Surgery

The shock involved in a major operation can result in sudden hair loss. Also after micrograft and minigraft surgery where follicles are transplanted on the scalp Telogen Effluvium almost always occurs. Due to the shock of surgery the hair follicles will fall out within about 3 months after which time new hairs will grow from the transplanted follicles.

Prescribed Drugs that can cause hair loss

Some drugs have been reported as causing hair loss in some individuals. While not everyone will experience hair loss some drugs are more likely to cause hair loss than others.

He following is list of some drugs that have been reported to have a side effect of hair loss:

Alloppurinol ( for the treatment of Gout)
Heparin ( blood thinner)
Coumarin (blood thinner)
Clofibrate (Cholesterol lowering drug)
Gemfibrozil (Cholesterol lowering drug)

The above drugs are only a few of the drugs that have been reported as contributing towards hair loss. If you suspect that prescription drugs that you are taking are causing hair loss you should discuss this with your doctor.

Hair loss caused by severe emotional stress

Some people experience Telogen Effluvium or sudden diffuse hair loss after a traumatic event such as the death of a family member or someone close, an accident, abuse or any other severely traumatic event. These events may trigger hair follicles to enter the resting phase prematurely in which case an increase in the amount of hair shed will be noticed about 3 months after the event, as the hair makes a transition from the


The above types to sudden hair loss are usually temporary an in most cases hair will grow back normally soon after it has fallen out. However in some cases where diffuse and sudden hair loss occurs the hair loss may continue until the underlying cause is treated. Types of sudden diffuse hair loss that continues until the cause is treated are as follows:

Thyroid Gland Malfunction
Diabetes
Anaemia
Systemic Lupus Erythematosis

Hair loss that is cause by the above underlying causes will usually continue until the underlying cause is treated.

Thyroid Gland Malfunction

Generally the first test a doctor or specialist is likely to carry out on a patient who is experiencing hair loss is a thyroid function test, as a thyroid problem may result in hair loss, Two types of thyroid problems can occur and either of these problems can result in hair loss. These conditions are Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism

Hypothyroidism --- Underproduction of Thyroxin

Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland produces too little thyroid hormone (thyroxin) to meet the bodies needs.

Hyperthyroidism --- Overproduction of Thyroxin

Hyperthyroidism – Overproduction of Thyroxin Hyperthyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland produces too much Thyroxin hormone to meet the bodies needs. People with other auto-immune disease are especially vunerable to hyperthyroidism. Hair loss may occur from either hypothyroidism or hyper thyroidism. In some cases hair loss is minimal, however some individuals experience severe hair loss. Fortunately hair loss is usually reversible with proper treatment. If you suspect that you have a problem with your thyroid function then you should visit your doctor.

Diabetes

Diabetes occurs when the body is unable to metabolise carbohydrates correctly. Untreated diabetes can result in hair loss.

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

This condition is an auto-immune disease which causes inflammation of multiple organ systems. The main signs of the disease are fever skin eruptions on the face and neck area, hands and arms. About half of the people with lupus will have hair loss. Systemic Lupus Eerythematosus mainly effects women between the ages of 20 and 50. It is thought that genetic makeup plays a major role in the development of the disease.


So although rape is not specified I am sure it falls under severe emotional trauma.

Although the incident was a little over three months ago, it is far from over. I know I cannot dwell in it, but the side effects even physical, such as hair loss are still lingering.



Victoria Placeo

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Rape Incident ( Anniversary) Date, Month Three

Yesterday was the three month Anniversary of the Incident. I seem to be getting worse more then better.

My ups and downs are much more then usual and I am easiy fatigued. I am working on different skills to help, but there are some depths I cannot crawl out of.

For the first time in the past two, I have seriously considered suicide. The thought of suicide has occasionally passed through my mind, but it was fleeting and perhaps at times for attention.

This was very different. I actually felt numb yet hopeless, how you can feel the two at the same time is beyond me. I looked at everything from the rape to yesterday, and realized I really had nothing.

Although, my story is in the side bar, I will briefly review what I have lost. First, the rape itself being most prominent took away alot. I lost my self-esteem, trust, security, self-respect.
I've lost the town I just moved to in October 2007 to start fresh. The town is to small to stay in, to many faces everywhere.
I've lost my family.
I lost my job while on medical, so there is no financial security.
I lost my apartment, due to the fact that I could not live where the incident took place.

When I took a look at all of this I realized, I had nothing. Now logically speaking I know there is something to live for. But emotionally the pain and loss it to much and I did not want to feel it anymore.

I do feel better today, but it seems to go that way. One day good, one bad, one minute good, one bad. It is like an emotional tsunami.

I have listed some sites below and will list in sidebar for future reference, if worse comes to worse email me!

http://www.suicide.org/rape-and-suicide.html

http://www.rapehelp.com/rape-and-suicide.html

http://www.rainn.org/get-information/effects-of-sexual-assault/depression



Victoria Placeo

Sunday, August 17, 2008

My Secondary Victim - The Rock

As I have stated in past posts, I had one main support whom I call "The Rock." The Rock has been there every step of the way and still is. The Rock wrote this about being a secondary victim:

I am a secondary rape victim.

What does that mean? A friend of mine was raped by someone she knew.
How does that make me a victim? She had no where else to go and turned to me for support and shelter.

If you’re reading this, then you’re probably familiar with Victoria. She is a great person that has had nothing but disappointments in people, law enforcement and work since the incident. She and I haven’t known each other for very long, but I along with another friend of hers have been pretty much her sole support since the incident happened.

I had met the scumbag who raped her several months before, from the way he looked at me when we met; I always referred to him as “Evil Eye.” In her words though, he was her friend. He had helped her move into her apartment, she had called a doctor for him when he was sick, and they had even dated. It’s beyond my comprehension as to how he could do this to her. In the weeks after the incident, every time she had mentioned knowing him, doctors, lawyers, etc. had said that he wasn’t a good person and that she should stay out of town. Where the hell were these people before? Just about every week, she’s finding out from others what a slime ball this man really is. He’s going to be sentenced soon, I will be there. I want to look him in the eyes and let him know that there are better people out there than he will ever be.

As I had mentioned before I am her support through this. Where was her family? That’s what I’ve been wondering the entire time that she has stayed with me. She’s shared some of the phone calls and text messages that they have sent. There have been times when I have almost been more appalled by their actions then by the incident. She asked her on family member for some help to move out one day and the response was… can’t I’m drinking tonight. It floored me. They will make more beer, but you only have one sister. On the hottest day of the year so far, we borrowed her fmily members truck to move her out of the apartment. When we brought it back, since they didn’t help, they actually thanked me for my help. Again, floored, not a violent person, but I wanted to punch them in the face. I am nothing to these people. They do not know who I am. They do not know where I live and here is their daughter staying with me. They haven’t even shown any interest in meeting me. How is that possible? Would none of you be at your daughter’s side through out this? Or would you let a person who you do not even know take on your responsibility? There is emotional retardation as she has described it, but this is just plain wrong. Here is a woman that would give all that she had for her family and this is how they treat her.

It has fallen to me to be the support. She does have friends, but they are scattered. I have no psychological training.

What did I do? Nothing really that anyone wouldn’t do for another friend. First, she needed a safe and secure place to stay. I’ve never lived with a woman before and here was a rape victim who I had dated in the months prior to the incident. She didn’t need a boyfriend, but she needed reassurance that she would be safe. We got her to my place and got her settled in as much as possible, then I listened, I hugged and I did my best to reassure her that she had not changed as a person because of the incident. There are many things that are very tough to handle when you as a secondary victim, are living with this. Moods can change very quickly and flashbacks can happen. I have found her lying on the floor of the bathroom many times at night. When I’ve tried to wake her to go back to her bed, she has recoiled in horror at me because of the dream she was having. I know that logically, she is not afraid of me, but it hurts to see the look directed at me in her eyes. Other times she has broken down because the rapist has taken everything away from her and she has nothing left. She has feelings of insecurity and that she is unattractive because of the incident. The only thing that one can do with these situations is be there for her, not get down yourself because she doesn’t mean you when she says she has nothing. She’s not afraid of you. Let her know that you are there for her and give her the complements that she needs. Try to stay positive. Time and your care will heal.

She’s been living here about 10 weeks now and our relationship has changed. I really liked her prior to the incident. We had gone on dates and hung out together and had made future plans on seeing each other prior to the incident. I believe that she and I would’ve been dating regularly had the incident not happened. She is a wonderful, kind and loving person and our personalities really went well together. Since she’s been here, my feelings have turned to just dating and having fun together to love. I love this woman.

The biggest thing to remember is that rape does not change who the woman in your life is. She is in no way “damaged goods” she is a victim of a crime. It’s up to you to be her support. It’s up to you to do the best you can for her. You may not always do the right thing, but the things you do right will always help.


In a slight defense of my family , one family membber offered once to help me move and I denied it, I was and am very bitter. As far as the other comment, yes they did say they was "drinking" after I texted them to help move.

As much pain and confusion I am in, it kills me to know that The Rock, although not directly involved, feels the stress and frustration.




Victoria Placeo

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Rape and The Drama Triangle

Alright as you know I was in the mental health field before they canned me for being raped. I taught this to many of the people I worked with and now oddly enough it can apply to me and other rape victims.

It is called The Drama Triangle and I got this version from Get your ANGRIES Out I have bolded what I believe to be of importance with rape and sexual assault.


The Drama Triangle:
The Three Roles of Victimhood



Lynne Namka, Ed. D © 2004


The three roles of the Drama Triangle are the three main positions that unhappy families play as described by transactional therapist, Stephen Karpman in 1968. The three roles are Perpetrator, rescuer and Victim that operate to keep people in the illusion of power. The roles incorporate learned patterns of habit and control mechanisms that bond people together in sick ways. They are symbiotic, destructive behaviors that affect all members of the family.

Karpman drew these roles on an inverted triangle with the Persecutor (whose behavior ranges from the dominant one to the abuser in the family) and the Rescuer at the upper end of the triangle and the Victim at the bottom. The two positions at the top are considered the “one-up” positions where the people feel superior while the Victim is at the “one-down” position feeing looked down on and helplessness. The positions often shift as people change emotions to protect the ego which feels threatened. The Victim may become angry at the injustice of being persecuted, thereby shifting into the Perpetrator role. The Abuser may become tired with his angry barrage then feel guilty and shift into the rescuing role.

These roles are unconscious scripts of how unhealthy family life is played out that keep people disconnected from true intimacy. They manifest in behaviors that people engage in to distance and disconnect from each other. They are the ways people attempt to stay safe, feel important and stroke their own egos. Participating in the drama of the triangle keeps people stuck in lies, blame and shame, unhealthy secrets, “shoulds” and addictions to crisis, chaos and manipulation.

The Drama Triangle positions are largely unconscious in nature and kept in place by denial, arrogance, helplessness and collusion (tacit agreement from all players to keep the status quo.) Unconscious scripts of guilt, shame are programmed into the young child’s psyche. Themes of desperation form around the roles—themes of depression, alcoholism, abuse, incest, scapegoating, manipulation and codependency. These thematic patterns are passed down from one generation to the next. According to one authority, approximately one fourth of all families have some version of having a tyrant member who tells the others what to do.

All roles are perpetuated by the denial of feelings first in the self and then in others. Denial is the defense mechanism that keeps people acting out in unconscious, perverted ways instead of seeing the reality of how they hurt themselves and others. The huge stash of denied feelings continues to build over a life time to perpetuate the misery in the person’s life by alienating him/her from loving connections with a partner or with children.

The children in the family learn all three roles and as adults perpetuate them on to their children. According to their personality type, they choose a primary role but have the other two roles at their disposal to bring up in specific situations. Each family member “moves around the triangle” shifting roles as needed. Each person has a primary role, but can shift to another role to maintain the illusion of power. With others outside the family, different roles are played depending on how much the relationship is valued and what healthy boundaries have been set in place. For example, a man might be dominant and abusive at home, but be subservient to his boss at work.

Psychotherapist, Lynn Forrest described how there is typically a primary position which the person identifies the most with. “Our primary positions are generally set-up in childhood. For instance, if a parent is overly protective, doing everything for a child, then that child may grow up to feel incapable of taking care of themselves. This sets them up for a life-time role of Victim. Or, the opposite; they might come to feel angry and vindictive if others don't take care of them, thereby adopting a primary Persecutor stance.”

In healthy families, there can be a minor version of these roles which erupt more so when huge stressors hit. Instead of the abusive Perpetrator dynamic, there is a dominant partner with the other partner going along with decisions but little drama as shown in traditional marriages. In healthy families there is honesty and permission to talk about acting out behaviors of others with problem solving instead of abuse, giving in and enabling. You can learn how healthy families interact and break into the negative roles. (See John Gottman’s research on how healthy families communicate with each other.)


Addictions Create Havoc in Families
Severe addictions always cause major destructive role playing. One form of the Perpetrator is the “nice guy” who turns mean while drinking. Another form is the angry person who rages when using drugs or alcohol. The alcoholic who withdraws regularly into stupor is a form of neglect. Addictions in some family members correspondingly bring up rescuing and victimhood in others big time. The deeper that one or more family members move into destructive addictions, the bigger the family drama will become.

An article from Al Anon illustrates how family members can shift Drama Triangle positions in their despair and frustration. “It is appalling how well the alcoholic controls the family, especially the wife, husband or mother. The alcoholic drinks again and again. The family screams, cries, yells, begs, pleads, prays, threatens or practices the silent treatment. It also covers up, protects and shields the alcoholic from the consequences of drinking. It the alcoholic continues to act like a little god, it is because the family is inadequate in opposing this attitude and abets the preservation of the illusion of omnipotence.”

Rescuing and enabling interrupt the natural aversive consequences of the roles. Sometimes people need to experience the painful consequences of their choices. Sometimes they need to suffer and hit bottom before they understand that they need to change. For example, a restraining order and being court ordered to anger management classes after domestic violence gives the shake up and reality check that the perpetrator needs. He needs to suffer the pain of aversive consequences rather than have the family members continue to suffer his destructive behavior.


Playing the Roles always Create Lose—Lose—Lose. No One Wins in the Drama Triangle.
All positions:


cause pain.
come from denied pain.
perpetuate lies and unhealthy secrets.
come from a sense of shame and cause shame.
come from feelings of unworthiness.
are about a loss of personal power.
perpetuate guilt and a “sick sense of love.”
keep people caught in dysfunctional behavior.
are passed down to the next generation of children.

The Roles that Keep You Stuck in Unhappy Relationships
Remember that you can have some traits of each of the roles and switch back and forth between them!

Perpetrator—“I Get To Feel Safe by Hurting Others and Putting Them Down”

Stuck in a false sense of superiority and defense mechanisms keep people in denial.

Addictive role—feeling the adrenalin rush during anger and rage. Getting high from fighting and witnessing fights. (If you get energized watching the Jerry Springer show, you might check out adrenalin addiction.)

Unconsciously uses anger as an energizer to keep depression at bay.

Needs to be in control and uses verbal or physical force to stay in power.

Deals with threat, new ideas and conflict with anger to stay safe in the role of being the dominant person.

Uses blame, criticisms, attacks and then venting to release stress.

Is highly judgmental of others and angry when others do not do what they say.

Self righteous judgments about others weaknesses subtly allows the weakness to continue.

Strong sense of entitlement—“you owe me” and willing to use verbal or physical force to get it.

Feelings of frustration trigger the right to get angry rather than deal with own uncomfortable feelings.

Unable to feel vulnerable and denies own weaknesses.

Shame based and uses negative behaviors to cover up/deny own problems.

Strong need to be right and not have their authority challenged.

Finds reasons to make others wrong and scapegoats them.

Believes others deserve the abuse and punishment the Perpetrators dishes out.

May have had a parent who modeled aggressive behavior and winning through force.

May have had a parent who spoiled the child setting up feelings of entitlement and getting his way.




Rescuer—“I Get to Feel Safe by Enabling Others”
Stuck in a false superiority with defense of acting unselfishly to help others.

Addictive role—feeling good at the expense of others rights to take care of themselves.

Good guy beliefs, such as takes the “high moral ground” of rescuing and enabling others.

Needs to be in control of others to avoid own feelings and problems.

Garnering self-esteem by being seen as unselfish for someone else’s own good.

Uses rescuing and enabling to connect or to feel important.

Highly judgmental of others and angry when others do not do what he/she says.

Blames Perpetrator for problems in the family while refusing to address one’s own problems.

Is anxiety driven and uses rescuing to reduce feelings of anxiety.

Guilts self when not involved with other’s problems.

Has shame about loss of self to meet others needs.

Super caretaker role can create sense of giving own self away and create depression.

Strong sense of entitlement with the Victim of “You owe me because of all I’ve done for you.”

Can become a martyr/Victim when he/she feels that he/she has been taken advantage of by others.

Parents the child though meeting his/her own needs of shame and guilt rather than meeting the needs of the child to be a responsible person who is allowed negative consequences and learns from them.

May feel guilty and try to make it up to a child because of a divorce or due to choosing a lousy spouse who abuses, scapegoats or neglects the child.

May feel guilty and try to make it up to a child because of drinking or using drugs when the child was small, neglecting the child or being a single mom.

May feel guilty and try to make it up to a child because of a handicapping condition or a perceived weakness in the child.




Victim—“I Get to Feel Safe by being Submissive”
Stuck in a false sense of being unworthy with defenses of feeling sorry for self and passive aggressive behavior.

Deals with threats by giving in, in order to feel safe and is submissive when others act inappropriately.

Unable to stand up for self and avoids confrontation.

Believes his/her needs do not count.

Can be overly sensitive, wish-washy and unable to make and stick to decisions.

Doesn’t take responsibility for own feelings.

Feeds off of the beliefs of Perpetrator and rescuer that he/she cannot take care of self.

Has shame base for being irresponsible and inept.

Is anxiety driven and makes excuses for staying stuck in Victim-hood.

Blames Perpetrator for problems in the family.

Anger, resentment and retaliation through manipulation and refusal to act as a responsible adult.

Moves between “Poor me” and anger with blaming others “He/she is bad.”

Angry when goes along with what the Perpetrator or Rescuer says to do.

Feels stuck and unfulfilled in life but does not risk moving forward.

May have had a lenient or overly-protective parent who set up expectations of helplessness.

May have had a parent who feels anxiety when the child has to suffer natural consequences from mistakes.




A Fourth Role—The Neglector—“I Get to Do What I Want and Ignore the Needs of Others”
While Karpman did not describe this dynamic, the Neglectful Parent can cause anger, trauma and fears of abandonment in children.

Involved in own interests and needs and does not recognize the needs of the children.

Is self involved and withdraws from family connections to meet needs outside the home.

Highly involved in career, hobbies, volunteer work, affair, drinking or drugging.

Leaves children to fend for themselves.

Can be absent-minded not there or cold and rejecting.

Expects oldest child (usually a girl) to raise the younger children.

Sometimes expects a child to take care of their needs. This creates a parentified child who has to give up their childhood to take care of others. The parentified child grows up learning codependency at an early age and is often angry at missing out on getting to be a child.




A Fifth Role--The Wise, Resilient Child—“I’m Not Like Them!”

Another dynamic not described by Karpman is the child in the family who is often wiser than the parents who knows from an early age that things are not right in the family. This child understands that there must be a better way to live than to keep wounding each other with offensive behavior. He or she starts to look outside the home for positive role models—a teacher, neighbor, healthy relative, friend’s parent or coach. If the child has talent, he/she is reinforced with attention and encouragement for his hard work. He/she becomes resilient in dealing with the dysfunction of the family and seeks healthier people to hang out with. He/she works hard and his/her identity becomes associated with hard work and talent. High achievement becomes the new defense to bolster up self esteem, but it makes the person one sided. Achievement becomes the self esteem rather than balancing all the skills necessary to form connection and create a happy family life.

The resilient child becomes successful in life due his/her incorporation of positive work skills. Working hard and even workholism becomes a defense strategy to feel good and getting the praise that comes with being seen as an excellent worker. All may go well for many years until working hard to keep self esteem high is not enough. The person starts to feel empty and have the sense that something is missing in their life as he/she has literally withdrawn from contact in the family he has created. He/she starts to feel the imbalance that spending long hours on the job or on hobbies has created. Having only limited defenses—working hard and perhaps drinking or drugging, the person turns more to what has worked in the past—working harder. But achievement no longer is enough to fill the void inside.

At this time, there may be a crisis--perhaps a mid life crisis. The defense of achievement does not work any more. At this juncture in life, there is a choice. The resilient child grown up can either crash into depression or acting out in addictions OR start to examine the early pain of being brought up in a Drama Triangle family where unhealthy behaviors were the daily norm. This can be a shake up time where the person decides to go into recovery and address the pain of the past. It may take the form of searching for a spiritual identity and true meaning in life. Some people believe this shake-up time is the Soul’s calling.


The Call from the Soul
The Soul reaches out to get the person to examine the unresolved pain of the past to provoke personal and spiritual growth. There are certain developmental milestones across life where the personal pain is so great that the person is willing to be open and stop some of the defenses he/she has built up. The pain of the past has to be addressed. Severe pain of the present life can be an impetus to get the person to wake up and learn, stretch and grow spiritually. The call from the Soul comes forth to spur the person into becoming the best person they can be.


Creating the Escape Hatch—Rising Above the Drama Triangle

Some family members find it easier to get into recovery and change than others. Rescuers and Victims are usually more sensitive people and are more likely to read books, attend self help meetings and come to therapy to get help. Perpetrators are less likely to change as they seem to have a bigger dose of arrogance, defensiveness, shame and denial to overcome. Of course, the recovery is dependent upon seeing and releasing the underlying needs that the Drama Triangle roles feed into.

Sometimes other family members see the value of getting healthy in their interactions with others; others do not. You can interrupt your Drama Triangle role playing and change the way you interact with family members. The whole recovery movement—therapy, self help books, AA and other help yourself groups, Oprah and Dr. Phil—teaches you how to change YOUR part of the dynamics of interacting with others. You can only change yourself. You can learn to be direct and straight with people without playing games.

Education is the first key. Understand and observe the roles that you play and how you shift from aggressor to Victim to rescuer. Healthy relationships can happen if you are willing to work and change yourself and learn to act in ways that form intimate connections.

Through imagery, see yourself in the middle of the triangle. Observe yourself when you start to go into thoughts, feelings and behaviors of the Perpetrator, Victim and rescuer roles. Rise above the roles through being mindful. Mindfulness is noticing what is happening rather than reacting to it. Watch how you are about to get hooked back in—observe your emotions and body reactions that indicate that you are being triggered. From up above, look down on the behaviors of the people involved—not to judge but to understand.

Become accountable and own all thoughts, feelings and behaviors that keep you in the drama roles. Take care of yourself and your feelings and problems done. Expect and insist that others take care of their feelings and problems. Make getting clean your number one priority with your behavior.

Address addictions and co-dependent behaviors through self help groups such as AA, AlAnon and Codependents of American Anonymous. There is tremendous, loving help out there if you but reach out and ask for it!

Stop the blame and shame game. Interrupt all blame either for self or others. Watch for attitudes and behaviors of “Who did it? Who can be blamed?” Looking for someone to be called on the carpet when something goes wrong is a constant in dysfunctional families. You can go one of two ways when there is an issue: You can look for someone to blame OR you can start problem solving.

The habit of blaming comes from being judgmental. Address your constant need to judge others when they do not meet your standards and values. Mind your own business! And don’t give too much credence to negative people’s opinion of you. Remind yourself, “What ____ thinks of me is none of my business. My business is to change so that I think well of myself.”

Address any irrational beliefs that you should be perfect. Error correction is analyzing your mistakes and deciding to act differently next time. The moment you realize that you have goof up, you have a choice: You can beat yourself up or you can figure out what you did wrong through problem solving. Stop self condemnation and learn from your mistakes.

Put yourself around positive people who don’t have the need to play the roles of the Drama Triangle. Insist on equality in relationships. Insist that people treat each other with respect. Figure out your values and what you will and will not put up with in your life. Set boundaries and stick to them giving consequences to those who continually go past the limits you have set. Your Bottom Line is that place where you decide to walk away when someone acts in ways you can no longer live with. Discontinue relationships with friends who use or abuse you.

Examine the dark sides of your personality and make friends with it. The shadow parts are those denied, repressed, acting out aspects of yourself which were formed during early family trauma. Keep your ears and eyes open and learn about your nasty behaviors which you may abhor. Keep your wisdom and heart open when you revert to the worst of yourself—these parts, when healed, hold many gifts for you.

Learn release techniques for processing unhappy memories of the past and current negative emotions. The techniques of hypnosis, imagery, cognitive behavioral interruption of negativity, Eye Movement Desensitization (EMDR), Thought Field Therapy (TFT), The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), The Tapas Acupressure Technique (TAT) and many others help process and release issues. Yes, you can do a lot to help yourself, but therapy is the fast track to moving off the Drama Triangle.

When there has been severe dysfunction in families, you can’t get to the depth of your pain on your own without an objective guide. Find a therapist who does not just let you talk. If you’ve been with the same therapist for some time and seem stuck, consider a new approach. Therapists who know the processing techniques listed above have better recovery success than ones who just listen to you.

Forgive yourself for learning the roles in the past and understand that you learned what was modeled for you. Therapists who use spiritual approaches to therapy are more likely to use techniques that help you forgive yourself and those who hurt you. One of the best techniques to promote forgiveness and moving on with your life is the Emotional Freedom Technique. This fast, effective technique incorporates forgiveness statement along with affirmations and acupressure to promote relaxation which helps neutralize strong emotions and attachment to problems.

Learn congruence which is the art of having your outside behavior match your inside feelings. In congruence, all thoughts, body states, emotions and actions are similar. When you are congruent, you state your feelings and act in a direct, fair manner. Make a new contract with friends and family members that you are going to avoid game playing and speak in fair, firm ways and express feelings. Learn the “I formula” and use it when appropriate—“I feel _____ when you _____. Understand that others will not change just because you express your feelings.

Get professional help early on for children who show signs of the dysfunction in the family. Anger issues, suicidal gestures, depression, use of alcohol and drugs and refusal to do school work, failing and dropping out of school are all signs of a child’s cry for help. Often the child’s acting out behavior is a barometer for the family, signaling that there is unaddressed family pain. Many families find help in getting off some of the Drama Triangle by first bringing a child who is hurting to therapy.

Interventions—confrontations with loving intent—can help bring insight and change to the family sometimes. When you come from a place of centeredness and love, you can ask a family member to look at their abusing, enabling or staying in Victim attitudes and behavior. Be prepared to get denial, anger or abuse in return.

The two rules in unhappy families are don’t shake up the system and don’t threaten the status quo. Understand that as you get healthy and refuse to play the Drama game, your family members may become angry and see you as bad if you refuse to play the old, manipulative games or call them on their dysfunctional behavior. If you stop bailing out irresponsible family members with your money and attention, you will be called selfish.

Some people choose to dissociate themselves from their game-playing family as they become healthy. If they do not pull away completely, they limit the amount of time they spend with dysfunctional members of their family. They shorten family visits where there is excessive use of alcohol and verbal abuse. They drop in on holidays before people become drunk and abusive instead of spending the entire day.

There is strength in numbers. Get together with members of the family who are ready to address the pain. Family dysfunction has to be recognized and processed. If you are the only one in recovery, get a support group of like minded people who are working on their own releases from Drama Triangle roles.




Healthy Skills for each Role Player to Leave the Drama Triangle
Perpetrator Role



Stop denying that you reject, punish, or persecute others.

Face the horrific reality that you have damaged others by your unrealistic expectations and anger.

Give up the need to be right and feel self righteous and superior to others.

Stop rationalizing and justifying domineering beliefs and behaviors.

Get honest with yourself—tell yourself the truth! Own the effects of your loud voice, angry stare and cold shoulder on others. Catch and interrupt yourself when you increase the volume and force to get your way.

When others disagree with you, ask yourself, “Am I really being threatened or is it just a difference of opinion?”

Learn how your use of force makes you feel powerful and find healthy ways to feel good about yourself.

Own how you are energized by getting angry. Identify the adrenalin rush that anger gives you.

Find new, healthy highs and energizing experiences to replace the adrenalin high of anger.

Attend anger management classes to learn anger containment and anger release techniques.

Attend parenting classes to learn about children’s age appropriate behavior and learn appropriate discipline techniques.

Monitor anger and take a time-out by walking away before you become verbally or physically abusive.

Learn to feel vulnerable with uncomfortable feelings instead of exploding out in anger when stressed or threatened.

Learn and use the Intentional Dialogue Technique (Harville Hendrix’s Imago Therapy) to feel empathy and compassion for others.

Apologize to those you have harmed and begin the repair work to set the family on a healthy course.

Get a life where you can live in peace, without anger!



Rescuer Role
Catch yourself in the act of feeling good because you helped someone. Stop basing your self-esteem on helping others.

Give up the need to feel superior because you are the good guy who always helps others.

Address your self esteem needs to control others and know what is best for them.

Address your own problems, shortcomings and negative emotions instead of focusing on other people.

Set limits about solving other people’s problems and put ALL of your energy in to solving your own.
Learn the “hooks”—how others use guilt and manipulation to pull you into the Drama Triangle.

Stop rationalizing and justifying your caretaking and enabling behavior.

Stop feeling sorry for other people and giving them advice, money or support.

When others overwhelm you with their problems, tell them you are not qualified to deal with such deep issues and suggest they get professional help.

Get clean and sober with your codependency. Read at least five books on codependency and do the mind-opening exercises.

Attend Adult Children of Alcoholics and AlAnon, get a sponsor and work the steps.

Deal with your anger of being the good little girl or boy and the parentified child who did not get to have a childhood.

Read five books on the heavy emotion of shame. Do the exercises in the books to help release shame.

Interrupt guilty feelings when you refrain from unnecessary giving by reminding yourself that your old family programming is coming up.

Define your new self esteem as a person who takes care of your own feelings, thoughts, actions and problems.

Bow out of the drama and encourage the Victim to stand up to the Perpetrator whenever possible.

Take an assertiveness course.

Get a life where you are responsible only for yourself!



Victim Role
Stop expecting someone else to rescue you. Think and problem solve for yourself. Act boldly.

Take responsibility for your feelings, thoughts and actions that contribute to your Victim role.

Be authentic with others and learn to state your feelings and your needs firmly.

Learn the body sensations and reactions that signal you are about to collapse into helplessness.

Listen to your constant Victim statements and break into them.

Address the terror and release traumatic memories of being abused by Perpetrator.

Learn to handle confrontation and deal with other people’s anger.

Study Learned Helplessness and Learned Optimism (Martin Seligman) and apply the ideas from his research to your life.

Challenge any belief or thoughts that say you are unworthy and can’t take care of yourself.

Decide what you expect and state your minimum standard of behavior that you consider to be decent treatment from others.

Set limits with Perpetrators and rescuers and walk away if they don’t respect your boundaries.

Stop blaming the Perpetrator and rescuer and focus on getting out from under their influence.

Deal with your anger at being scapegoated and punished by others and your taking on the victim role.

Start a self nurturing, self care program to bolster your ability to take care of your own needs.

Take an assertiveness training course. Read five books on assertiveness. Take the course again.

Surround yourself with new, positive friends and define yourself as an independent person who can handle life’s problems.

Get a life where you are responsible for yourself!

Hello. My Name is _____ and I’m in Recovery from the Drama Triangle

Get honest. Recovery from family dysfunction is a time of facing the truth about your childhood and delving into the dark hole of lies, manipulations and devious behaviors that exist inside of you. It is about examining how you treat others and allow them to treat you. Drama Triangle work is Soul work. It is a call from your highest self to address the guilt, shame and sense of unworthiness within that percolates up and refuses to go away. You can create the space to watch and address your thoughts and behaviors as they present themselves daily.

Really get it that your playing out the familiar roles of Perpetrator, Rescuer and Victim does not serve you. It does not serve others. It is just something you have learned because it was modeled for you. So you need not have guilt or feel ashamed for what you have learned living in your family. As learned patterns of habit, the attitudes and behaviors that make up all the roles of the Drama Triangle can be unlearned. To do nothing to change the roles guarantees that thing will remain the same.

Real love in a family is a combination of checks and balances—calling a person on his inappropriate behavior when necessary and giving enthusiastic support for strivings for growth. Unconditional love given to disrespectful or destructive behavior reinforces the Perpetrator role as it does not provide any motivation for change. Unconditional love given to rescuing, enabling or victim behavior enhances continuing dysfunction. Real love is honest and asks the people in the family to become the best they can be without shaming or guilting. The ability to share feelings honestly and respectfully is one sign of healthy behavior in a family. Real love communicates a belief of positive regard for the person. It expects and gives respect to all family members.

The undoing of the pain is an ongoing process of emotional and spiritual maturity across the lifespan. It can be hastened through study, observation and confrontation of negative behaviors. You learn, stretch and grow each as you mindfully watch your interactions with others. The techniques from Energy Psychology Therapy and Imago Therapy are so easy to learn to help you release negativity with amazing quickness.

Forgiveness is the ultimate key to true change and recovery. It can’t be forced, but by studying this humbling process of release, it comes, sometimes out of the blue, to take you to a place of higher consciousness. Forgiveness happens gradually for some as there is a realization as Virginia Satir said, “We are all victims of victims of victims.” Forgiveness is threefold: forgiveness of self, others and whatever you call God. Start with yourself to accept that you are a person with strong feelings that were born of trauma and injustice that call out now for transformation. That’s why the Course in Miracles and the Emotional Freedom Technique have such depth. They have a process to touch into forgiveness which you can apply daily to bring about an overall acceptance and surrender of the injustices and betrayals that happened in your life to come to a place of calmness.

Remember, recovery from your family pain is a day-to-day process. Life becomes brighter and more cheerful when you address your personal pain. With practice and mindfulness, you can break down those walls of delusion of dysfunctional behavior you have built in a misguided attempt to stay safe. Make honesty the only language you speak. In your recovery from lies, deceits, and manipulation, decide to be as honest as you can and treat those you love with respect. The process of recovery is being mindful as you heed that call from your Soul to wake up and become all that you can be.

You know I said I bolded but bottom line.....IT'S ALL IMPORTANT AND RELATIVE.





Victoria Placeo

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A unexpected email from a support at the sexual assault sentencing

As I wrote yesterday, the sentencing for the organism was on Monday. I had few people there with me, but one friend did drive two hours just to support me.

Later, that day I received and email from him. It did not directly relate to the rape sentencing, so I emailed him back and asked what it was about. This is the email back about what the content meant:

"it was in regards to the letter the assistant DA read from you. I was really blown away by the fact that, even though you suffered through what you did...you asked that the guy get help and counseling...was rather touching, not something I could have done...so its about you. I hope it was ok...it's just how I see it."

The letter he is speaking of is my victim impact statement. Apparently, a few have commented on my statement and how I asked for the organism to get help.

Anyway back to my friend, he is a good person but at times as he will not deny a bit cynical. This is the original email he sent me:

The Goodness



Sometimes I have the unique opportunity to observe what I call, the goodness, in others. It’s really a great feeling…especially considering that most messages we receive about others comes in the form of negativity. I have always been leaned towards the side that agrees that humanity is in dire destruction, that people are more poised towards selfishness and discontent with each other. When I get to see this goodness though, it sort of balances me back out, makes me hopeful for the future of mankind.

I hope more people get to see the goodness. In this day and age, more than anything, society needs to see and experience this goodness. People need to believe in the good of each other. Its out there, maybe you just need to open up to it…sometimes that’s the hard part for me. Don’t think this is one of those rantings saying, do onto others as you want others to blah, blah, blah…that to me, is almost pushing people to do something foreign to them…kindness and good-heartedness should come natural…at least in my opinion, not forced and imitated.

I give this idea to you without describing at all what exactly I saw and experienced today, but that’s ok…it keeps it that much more real and wonderful to me…no one can take that away by dissecting it with their words or beliefs. It is something I hope you will experience for yourselves very soon. it’s a good thing, a positive star in a galaxy of over-burdens and discontent, and that’s a rare, but positive light. Go out there and open your eyes, it might just amaze you at what can be seen.



I post this for one main reason..... in all my darkness, guilt, terror, and pain, I gave someone hope. My self esteem is wiped and I feel worthless, but out of it I was able to give someone a new view.

I thank him for coming, supporting me, and sharing this which was something very unexpected.

Although he came to support me, he left with something, which should give me some worth.



Victoria Placeo

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

After The Sentencing

I was not required to go to the sentencing, but I thought it would be a good idea to help me heal..........Bad Idea!

Yesterday was the sentencing and few people showed up. The Rock accompanied me to it. It was scheduled to be first on the docket and was fifty minutes late. There I sat with my tiny little row of supporters, waiting and waiting. That in itself was stressful.

When the time arrived two of the organisms family members entered the courtroom. It was the organisms mother and grandmother. I felt horrible, the guilt was my main feeling. People have asked me how I could feel guilt. I saw two family members who loved that organism and were in agony, I was indirectly involved in that.

When the organism entered the courtroom it did not look up at me or its family. Again, I felt a tremendous feeling of guilt. Why? I'll tell you why. I saw a beaten down individual who now had part of its life taken away and again I was indirectly involved.

The Dynamic Duo tried to get it into my head that the organisms made that choice when it kicked in my door and assaulted me. I realize that is rational but the feeling of guilt was prevalent.

I don't remember much of what the judge said I was overwhelmed with feelings. I felt of course the guilt, fear, terror, anger, and sadness.

My victim impact statement was read but not by me. I had the choice, but there was no way I could get up in front of the organism and see its face. The assistant district attorney read it for me.

Alot of legal jargin was said and there were no objections from the organisms side.

Towards the end the judge stated that the fines the organism had to pay would be suspended due to paying restitution. I saw the organisms grandmother shack her head and rage went through me. I wanted to yell WHAT THE HELL.........YOUR UPSET BECAUSE YOUR KIN HAS TO PAY ME FOR THE DAMN DOOR IT KICKED IN , WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU YOU GERIATRIC BI**H!! Of course I restrained myself........WHICH IS SOMETHING THE ORGANISM SHOULD HAVE DONE MONTHS AGO!

By the end of it all, I was very tense and shook up, to put it lightly. As soon as "all rise" was said I was crying, panicked, and on my way to the nearest exit.

I needed to leave fast, I did not want to see the organisms face or any member of its family. The only clear thing I remember through the tears and panick was cussing at the elevator. All I wanted was to get out of there and the elevator would not come......SURFREAKINPRISE! I recall saying " What the hell, there are only two damn floors."

All in all, the event which should have been a day of victory and relief was very traumatizing.

My opinion.......don't go to the sentencing unless you feel completely stable (don't know how you could) or absolutely have to.


Victoria Placeo

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Tommorow Is The Sentencing

Tomorrow, August 11, 2008 is the sentencing for the organism. The organism took a plea bargain, so I don't understand the sentencing, but I guess it is a legal thing. I am not required to go, but I feel I have to, I don't know why, but I feel I have to.

Today and tonight, well hell the whole weekend, has been rough. I have The Rock going with me, but so far my friends that were said they would come can't. I understand that they have lives, but I asked that they don't tell me they can come and not make it.

As I have stated before, my family has been of no real support. I don't know if they will show.

All weekend and especially today, I am a clusterf*%k of emotions. I feel terrified of seeing the organism, also seeing the organisms family. I feel abandoned and alone by my own family, and I feel guilty for having The Rock have to be there for me all the time.

Feelings about tomorrow....I am terrified, hesitant, depressed, scared, worried, lonely, at at times catatonic.

That's all I can say, I'm in bad way and I'm alone.



Victoria Placeo

Saturday, August 9, 2008

One of My Secondary Victims

I written in past posts about my secondary victims. Those whom helped me and still are helping me with this. Since there are only two people I call them The Dynamic Duo.

I refer to one of the two as The Rock because they are near me and have to deal with the brunt of most of me. The other has been one of my best friends for years I consider here one of my saving angels, so I will just refer to her as Angel.

I asked The Dynamic Duo to write and tell me how they felt having to be the only two there for me and this is what Angel had to say:

"The day after Victoria was attacked she called me. She wouldn't say what was wrong, but I could tell she was very upset. This started to worry me as I knew she was pretty much alone in the town she lived. She said she was coming to here and would explain it then. However later in the day she called back and let me know what had happened without going into too much detail. I tried to make sure she was in a safe place, had gotten medical attention, and was Ok to drive to back here. Only when she got here did I see how traumatized and injured she was.

Since the attack, I have made her call me or I would call her to make sure I knew where she was at all times and if she was in a safe place. There have been a few time that I have tried to call and check on her and could not get an answer. During those times I have stayed up late waiting for the phone to ring, thinking I will give her 30 minutes more before I notify the Police Department that I cannot reach her.

I have felt helpless in trying to comfort her many times, this is not an easy thing to deal with and will impact her for the rest of her life. How do I help her? What do I say? Many times she would ask me to explain to people what had happened to her because she was unable to talk about it to anyone else but a few close friends.

I had met the man and have since felt extremely betrayed and outraged at what he did to my friend!! What gives him the right to steal her life??? She has lost her freedom, home, her job, her trust, her health, her mental stability, her self confidence, her dignity, and yes...even some of her relationships with family and friends - which may never be completely restored!! I am not an angry person, but this has made me livid!"


I thank God every for The Dynamic Duo and for Angel. I feel horrible that they are the only ones I have. I feel horrible for them. It's not easy going through rape but I know it can not be easy for The Dynamic Duo either. Thank You to them.



Victoria Placeo

Friday, August 8, 2008

Animator vs. Animation by *alanbecker on deviantART

A little victim pick me up! Sometimes, we need to take on many faces to make it through!

Animator vs. Animation by *alanbecker on deviantART



Victoria Placeo

The 911 Call

The Organism took a plea bargain, therefore I asked my Victims Advocate if I could listen to the 911 call. Because there is not trial, I actually got a copy of it.

Why would I do this, why would I want to relive it?

After the rape, I don't remember much about the call or what I said and did. I kept imagining what happened. For me I had to know what was said, with the hopes that I could remember that time period correctly.

I listened to the CD with The Rock last night. It was very difficult. On the call, I kept saying "I want my Daddy." I also asked for my sister and my ex-husband (ex-husband by name but not naming him.

I was hoping to remember more, I was tired of imagining what it was like. All I did remember before listening to the CD was the nice 911 girl, sitting in the bathroom, and the emergency man, who tried to get me out of the bathroom.

I am sorry to say the call did not help much in remembering. I heard a few gaps in the call where I quieted down, and I did remember that I was checking on the bleeding I had (the full incident will be written about at a later time).

I am a bit upset that I don't remember more, however the CD through my whole night off. I felt bad, sad, confused, and on edge.

I felt very, very dirty. The way I explained it to The Rock, it felt like there was a film beneath my skin of bad. I explained to The Rock that I felt like I needed to cut my skin to remove the film. Now when I say that I dont mean in the action way. I don't want to harm myself, but I wanted to get rid of the bad. Another way I put it to The Rock was it was liked I was covered in primer ( the bad film) and on top was millions of layers of paint (my skin).

People probably think I am crazy for wanting to listen to it. It did upset me and remind me of the incident. However, what upset me the most was the people I asked for on the call.

They have no idea I asked for them and unfortunatley, those I asked for have not been the strong support I needed through this time. I asked for them because I trusted them and they were are not here for me. It makes me feel horrible.

In regards to listening to a 911 call, it's your choice on listening to yours, it could help or hurt. Whatever you decide, DON'T LISTEN TO IT ALONE!! Also, do not plan on having a very decent rest of the day.


Victoria Placeo

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

My Support System - Family Not Included

One thing that is very important that I have learned the hard way, is have your support system in place.

I am not going to refer to my family in this or any future posts as mother, father, sister, or brother. I will refer to them as 1,2,3, and 4. In no particular order of importance. I do this so I won't make my family look bad, although in my opinion they have not been great.

Anyway onto the story after the incident, my family was there briefly, they seemed concerned and I am sure they were. One day shortly after the incident, my family could not find me. I was in the town I told them I was going to be in, but they did not know the location or number to reach me at.

At the organism was out on bail and I was to fearful to stay at my family's house due to their and my safety. So, I told them where I was going, a town about 20 miles away. That information seemed good enough for them.

Well it was not, when they could not find me they worried and thought I was dead, can't blame them for that. When I found out that they what was going on I called them and family member 2 answered the phone, and told me not to contact them anymore, because they thought I was dead. Not the thing I needed to hear from a family member THREE DAYS AFTER A RAPE!

I decided then and their that I had to tell people outside my family to develop a support system, knowing I needed it. I chose three, let the police know if they had to contact me to contact one of the three and not my family. Those three also had each others numbers in case they needed to find me.

My family did not call for days and days. I received a call from family member number one, lecturing me on how I was an inconvenience because they had to be the go between. WELL EXCUSE ME....IF A FAMILY WHO IS SUPPOSE TO UNCONDITIONALLY LOVE YOU TELLS YOU TO LEAVE THEM ALONE YOU DO, ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU NEED ALL THE SUPPORT YOU CAN GET.

I turned to my magnificent three as I will call them for support when I needed it and they were there. One individual I shall call The Rock:) Makes it a little flattering for them. Those three checked on me everyday, and I didn't hear word from my family.

One day while I was back at my apartment family member 2 stopped by to give me my birthday gifts. My rape took place two days before my 31st birthday. Family member 2 asked if I was still planning on going to the concert we planned to go to before the incident. ARE YOU SMOKING CRACK, DO YOU EVEN THINK A DAMN CONCERT WAS ON MY MIND!

Numerous things occurred up till now with the family. They would ask me to come to town and go out. ONCE AGAIN, SMOKING CRACK? No, I don't feel like being around a crowded bar and especially in the small town WHERE I WAS RAPED!!

Family number 3 was going away and the rest of the family was having a dinner to wish them goodbye, I was not invited. Over memorial day, they asked if I was coming to the house, once again in the small town, to see the extended family. I did and it was not even discussed, to embarrassing I suppose for the immediate family.

Family member number 1 just weeks ago asked about the marks on my face and I explained that I had to take my nails off due to nightmares. Family number 1's response was "your fucked up, you need more counseling". Coming from someone with OCD. NOW REALLY, WHO SAYS THAT? A FAMILY MEMBER TO ANOTHER, LESS THEN THREE MONTHS AFTER A RAPE?

Most recently, I could not return to my apartment, I did not want to be in that small town or relive the crime. One day, I text family member number one if they would like to help me move the response was "No way drinkin." I was crushed. I had to go back to my apartment with The Rock and we did all the moving. It was extremely traumatizing to go back over and over.

Finally, all family member number 2 asked me when I call (they hardly call)is if I found a job yet. I JUST FREAKIN LOST MINE ON THE 9TH OF JULY, WHAT THE HELL.

As you have noticed I have not mentioned family member number 4, I believe number 4 is just emotionally retarded and can not handle this type of situation so chooses not do deal with it at all.

I have been asked less then a dozen times if I'm okay. It would be nice to hear my family say "Victoria how are you doing" or " I love you."

I do love my family, but roles reversed, and they have been in the past, I would be there for them in a heartbeat. In my mind, nothing is more important than the people you love.

I am crushed by their lack of support but there is nothing I can do. I cannot change them or make them care.

My magnificent three dropped to The Dynamic Duo, but that’s another story. I am so grateful to them and they deserve the world. The Rock has had to bear most of brunt and for that The Rock shall always be loved.

BOTTOM LINE ……Although you have enough stress, make sure to establish a support outside your counselors you will need them. Online I do recommend Pandora's Aquarium for starters. Email me with any other suggestions or questions about online support.


Victoria Placeo

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Well You Look Ok. I'M NOT!!

I am doing the best I can to keep it together. Not many know about the flashbacks I have nor the roller coaster of emotions. It was suggested to me by my main support that perhaps I should let my feelings out, I guess I'm just not that type of person.

However what really burns me is that people see me and think I'm okay and state she looks okay, she seems fine.

I'm not okay! I cry quite often. I have dreams and nightmares every night. I wake up in different places where I'm staying. I even had to remove my freaking acrylic nails because I wake up with scratches.

I'm sad, I'm lonely, I trust no one. But lucky for me I look okay!

So in my normal way of research I found this on Rape Trauma Syndrome (RTS) posted on Medicine Australia:

Acute Phase - Disorganisation

Impact Reactions - within hours Victims may present in a variety of ways, from

expressed style - feelings shown in such behaviour as crying, sobbing, smiling, restlessness, tenseness, joking.

controlled style - feelings are masked or hidden behind a calm, composed, or subdued effect.

Perhaps, I am the controlled style, and perhaps it may go beyond the Acute Phase of Rape Trauma Syndrome.

But..........if anyone is wondering this is a summary on
Medicine Australia of how I really feel:

Reorganisation Phase

Short-term effects - up to 3-4 months

generalised anxiety & fear.
disturbance - of eating, sleeping, thoughts, relationship.
disruption - to create safety eg change of phone number.
impaired social functioning
difficulty in maintaining/ establishing relationships.
guilt for not preventing assault (often).
sudden, unpredictable changes of residences and disappearances.
negative impact of legal processes.


According to aardvark.org ( An Abuse, Rape and Domestic Violence Aid and Resource Collection) I may be in the denial stage:

Denial The two biggest things under this category are: that the event even happened and that even if it did, it didn't "bother" the victim. The stages of shock and denial can take severe mental and emotional tolls on victims. The psychological destruction, types of traumatic reactions and the long-term effects and syndromes impacting victims are many. The severity or length of the incident or incidents doesn't seem to have any impact on how deeply a victim is harmed - the victim of a date rape with minor physical injuries doesn't suffer less than a victim who is raped repeatedly and receives more severe physical injuries.

Who the heck cares...........bottom line................I'M NOT OKAY! And there is a good chance that is other survivors look okay they may not be.



Victoria Placeo

Monday, August 4, 2008

Sexual Assault and the Rape Kit

One very important aspect of the aftermaths of being raped, is the rape kit. It is good to know what the doctors and nurses did if you weren't quite coherent at the time ( I was not). If you have not seen a doctor GO NOW, DON'T WAIT UNTIL IT'S TO LATE...AND DON'T SHOWER!



Please pay special attention to this post. I am appalled at how the doctor handled it. First, he had no idea how to do it. I can't point the finger at that maybe he had never had to. Due to this fact, he and the nurse had to read the directions which I believe prolonged the process.



What I can point the finger at is the doctors appalling remark while doing the kit. He stated "that these rape kits sure are tedious." He so didn't.................HE SO DID! EXCUSE ME FOR PUTTING YOU OUT DOC, NEXT TIME SOMEONE KICKS IN MY DOOR AND RAPES ME I'LL TRY TO GIVE YOU A HEADS UP, SO YOU CAN READ THE DAMN DIRECTIONS FIRST!! I think this comment qualifies for The Darwin Awards for just a stupid, uncaring, ignorant comment in such a serious situation.



While researching I found this article by Steve Thompson and thought it was very accurate.



When you go to the hospital after you've been sexually assaulted, the attending nurses will conduct a rape kit, which is nothing more than the collection of evidence. It helps to understand the process, however, during this stressful time. Unfortunately, examinations can feel like further violation of your body, and even though medical personnel are actually helping you.



First, you should know that you can refuse a rape kit, even after it is already started. The doctors and nurses at the hospital can provide you with medical attention without collecting evidence, and it is your decision if you want the police to pursue the case. While it is advisable to have the rape kit done in case you change your mind later, keep your rights in mind when you go to the hospital.



The first stage of the rape kit is to examine your body for physical injuries related to the sexual assault. The doctor or nurse will make sure any cuts, bruises, lacerations, contusions or broken bones are treated first, especially if you were beaten in addition to the rape. He or she will also take blood and urine samples to test for things like sexually transmitted diseases and infections.



Your clothes will be collected for the rape kit, but you will be provided new garments to wear home from the hospital. If you contact a rape crisis center, or ask the doctor to do it for you, they can bring you sweats or a t-shirt to wear so that you are comfortable. During the examination, however, you will probably be asked to wear a hospital gown to facilitate evidence collection.In many cases, victims of sexual assault are covered with a plethora of evidence. The nurse or doctor might swab your vaginal, anal and oral cells for semen, or they might use an alternate light source to help illuminate fluids that could be on your body. This is why rape victims should not bathe before they are examined; using soap and water will eradicate all evidence that could be used against your rapist.



The nurse or doctor will also look for foreign hairs that might belong to your attacker and transferred during the sexual assault. Pubic hairs, in particular, are often found on rape victims, which might contain DNA that the police can use to identify your attacker. All of this evidence will be placed in tubes and evidence button to be submitted to the lab with the rest of your rape kit. You might also be given a routine pelvic exam, like you would have at the gynecologist, but make sure to tell the nurse if you are in severe pain.



Other procedures might include scraping underneath your fingernails in case you scratched your rapist and trapped his DNA under your nails; the administration of emergency contraceptives; medication or topical treatments for your injuries; and anything else the doctor orders to make sure you leave the hospital in good health. You will also have the opportunity to speak with a police officer about your sexual assault, which is a good idea after the rape kit has been completed.







One things not mentioned is that when the examine for hairs they will pull scalp and pubic hairs from you. Although this is more trauma, it is good evidence. Also, they may take pictures of your wounds or abrasions, they did in my case. As humiliating as it is, let them if you can handle it, it is also great evidence.



My rape kit was done right after the incident and was extremely degrading. Although I was in an odd state perhaps disassociated, I do remember bits and pieces. When people yank things from your body you have a tendency to remember.





Victoria Placeo