Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Illness after Rape


I have been meaning to continue my series on Secondary Survivors Not Understanding and I will however since that post in August I have not been well at all.

To be perfectly honest I have not been in the best of health since the rape that is one reason it is so imperative that I post about Illness after rape so if just by chance others are sick after trauma, sexual assault, or rape.    
While my rape may not be the exact cause of my illness (which is unknown at the moment) during this time of sickness I have discovered a few things that I thought I would share.

First off a brief synopsis, of course as many know I was raped in 2008 and was dealing with many things.  I was not completely well both physically and mentally.  In May of 2010 I came down with viral meningitis, with the meningitis for about 7 to 10 days but have not been completely well since.  Everything from fatigue, rashes, diarrhea, etc.  After the meningitis I had a positive Lyme disease test and a positive West Nile virus test, I was treated for both but both the titers came back negative, so the doctors said I did not have either and they were a false positives.

I have had test after test done since May 2010 to check different areas they all came back fine.  My doctor at the time was going to send me to Mayo.  It was recommended to me to switch clinics to see if a better one (according to many) could find out more before going to Mayo, so I did.  This clinic does focus on the normal stuff but also practices functional medicine.  I am not a doctor so just click the Wiki link and it will tell you more about functional medicine.

Since I have been on and off (more on than off) sick since the rape and much worse since the meningitis the new clinic doctors have done many tests and I do trust them, which is rare.  I realize doctors are busy and have many pressures, so patient/doctor time is not what it used to be.

What is interesting is that my psychologist, my doctor that prescribes my mental health medication (which by the way I am off all but one now ……….YAY!)  and my medical doc and chiropractor (just started seeing one in August of this year, due to recommendation, my first time, very interesting), do not think that I have many mental health issues (although there are still a few creeping around:), they all think it is physical.  Long story short (too late), I am down to two tests left that they may think may be the culprits Lyme disease and adrenal fatigue/cortisol test.

I had to cover a little history but now onto the main stuff - adrenal fatigue and rape.  Some of my doctors seem to think that possible due to the stress from the rape and meningitis that my adrenal glands might be shot and may be the cause of my odd but debilitating symptoms.  To read more about it go to adrenal fatigue on Wiki.

While there can definitely be no science to pinpoint if the stress of the rape can lead to illness (at least in one my situation) , I wonder could it have put me through so much that my body was tired out.  Also, add in a little meningitis and we have bad cocktail.

So yesterday I had a cortisol test to see if my adrenal glands are functioning properly.  The Cortisol stim test is a bit long but not bad.  They draw blood, then inject cortisol, wait 30 minutes draw again, then wait another thirty minutes and draw again and done. 

I thought this was important to share because as many know stress can be the cause of many illnesses.  The trauma of rape is a huge stressor and could in fact, in my mind anyway, weaken the immune system and perhaps make you more susceptible to many things.  In fact while reading up on adrenal gland problems a trauma is on many of the lists of things that can shake your adrenal glands up.

I should find the results of the Cortisol test on Wednesday or Thursday of this week so I will keep you posted, however if anyone had any information on illness after being raped or adrenal fatigue after rape I would love to hear about it!

Victoria Placeo

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Secondary Survivors Not Understanding Rape – Part 1


After all these years I have come to a full understanding that secondary survivors have a hard time understanding the Rape.  Secondary survivors by definition (I think, I am not a huge researcher)  include family, friends, etc.  Just in the last three months I have four incidents that show that they do not understand.  

Now I realize that is a broad statement and I by no means mean to speak about all secondary survivors of rape, just my own.  However, I find it hard to believe any could understand someone’s rape or other violent crime fully, if they had not experienced it themselves.  For example, I would never be able to understand being held hostage for days or years.  Just like every rape and violent act against anyone, while there are many similarities everyone has a different set of circumstances.

Off on a rant I went, now onto the point.  As I mentioned I have had four incidences in the past three months with family that shows that my rape may not be that important to them or then just do not give a crap, at least that is how I feel.  Now I will describe one incident here and then do the rest of the incidents in other parts.  You can tell me if I am being too sensitive.

As many know and most do not I do not live in the town that the rape occurred anymore.  However, one of my family members has many friends there and does visit there often which is fine.  About two months ago I was chatting with that family member and she said she was going to go boating with one of her friends friends there in that town.

She told me the name of that friend’s friend because he had the last name of the man that raped me.  It turns out it is the brother of the man that raped me.  I was immediately affected by this and did not want my family member (this is my immediate family) hanging out with him.

I asked her if now that she knew it was my rapist’s brother if she would still hang out with him and she said yes.  I WAS CRUSHED! 

I felt hurt, betrayed, disrespected, unimportant, etc.  I really could not believe it.  I was also a bit worried about her hanging out with him due to the fact that she may eventually start to hang out with my rapist when he gets released.  I mean that is not too farfetched I think, if she does not care to hang out with a family member of his then why not him? 

Then I began to think maybe I was out of line feeling that way…..

While it is true that just because the man she is going to hang out with is my rapist brother does not make him a bad person.  I know that the brother had nothing to do with it, but it still cuts like a knife.

I thought my own family members would at least have enough respect to not be involved with my rapist’s family. 

I WANT TO KNOW AM I OUT OF LINE FEELING THIS WAY?

Victoria Placeo

Friday, August 19, 2011

Male Rape



I have never written about male rape before except a bit about prison rape.  My writing about prison rape had to do with not wanting my rapist to get raped in prison even though he did it to me.

I guess one reason that i have not written about male rape or male rape victims is because this was my blog about my experiences.  After watching the video below I realized that by only focusing on myself and my experiences I may me doing a great disservice to the readers.

I have talked often about others taking a minute to put themselves in a rape survivors shoes to help support them.  However, I have never done that myself when it comes to male rape victims.  Regardless of gender rape is there and it can throw off ones life completely.

So when I came across this video and saw the male rape victim statistics I thought WOW, here I am, just writing about me (which is really what this blog was meant to be) and thinking how selfish of me to not even touch on male rape.

My rapist was a male, he did something bad to me, however I would never want him to get raped in prison or anywhere else.  Beside the point really....this is a great video which briefly covers a male rape victim story and male rape in general. 



I hope you all can get something out of it like I did!

Victoria Placeo




Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Casey Anthony’s Release


I have been waiting to write this post for quite some time, in fact during the trial I wrote a post and decided not to post it.  This post is not about whether I thing Casey Anthony is guilty or not guilty, that has been decided and my opinion on her guilt or innocence shall remain silent.  As John F. Kennedy once said:

“Too often we... enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.”

However as many of you know I do openly share my opinion of most things…….why not it is my blog.  So what this post is about are the people’s reaction to the Casey Anthony Verdict and her release and yes it will relate to rape.

Moving on……….first off people are nuts!! But I guess I do not need to tell you that.  Casey Anthony was found not guilty……..there is nothing anyone can do about that and she if free now.  But it continues hate, horrendous comments, and of course the death threats………..oh the death threats.

Last time I checked anyone who allegedly killed/murdered someone is not a good thing and premeditation is even worse.  So………..basically many who think that Casey Anthony killed Caylee now is upset, wants her to fry, and are making death threats.  AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO SEES THAT SOMETHING DOES NOT ADD UP?

Murder/Killing = Bad - but yet people want her to die and threaten to kill her?  So what I see is a bunch of people with homicidal thoughts……….if they were to be in any type of doctors office and express these things they would be committed.

The hate and horrible comments………..a bunch of people with chips on their shoulder that are easier to project onto Casey Anthony……..do not get me wrong here I have many chips on my shoulder, but I believe directing them to the proper source is much healthier and makes more sense.

Yes I KNOW a wonderful little girl is now gone and that cannot be forgotten, however if people are really so outraged at the Casey Anthony verdict, perhaps they should look at the law, the system, new laws that could be enacted, instead of wasting precious energy on hating her.

How does this relate to Rape?  Well, I was raped; I was hurt by someone who luckily got time.  However, I wish the rapist no harm in prison and do not hate him.  Why would I, does he care that I would hate him……..NOOOO!  The only person the hate would eat away at is me.

Wishing the rapist harm after he did harm does not add up, just like with the Casey Anthony verdict. 

Rape = Bad ……….wishing someone to get raped or hurt in prison would make me no better than him!

Bottom line - Rape/Murder/Killing = BAD - Hoping for Rape/Murder/Killing = BAD (and not to mention PREMEDITATION!)

So she Casey Anthony is free now…….leave her alone…….if she really is not all there and is a menace to society…….she will do something wrong again. 

And for everyone who hates her, wants her dead, is spending your precious life still angered at the verdict……..go to the doctor, get your blood pressure checked it must be sky high by now, maybe a sedative……….that should help.

By the way this stuff had to stop!! Casey Anthony Dunk Tank Makes A Big Splash At Fair

Wondering what types of comments I am going to get on this one?

Victoria Placeo

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Rapist Denied Parole

Well as I wrote last week I spoke to the victim coordinator that stated that the man who raped me would be up for parole this month and many times they like to let them out early to make sure they will behave and do well in society. Today I found he was denied parole, not something I was not expecting however and I will explain why.

When I spoke to the victim coordinator she told me there were people I could contact to see how the rapist as doing (not that I would be checking on his wellbeing mind you). She stated I could call the parole board, his counselor at the prison, and the department of corrections. These are all important things to know if you are in a similar situation. It is good to at least have some knowledge if you can contact these places in your state even if it is for your own peace of mind.

So, I did contact the counselor that’s working with him at the state prison. I did not expect much because I know from common sense as well as my past work experience, even when it comes to offenders due to confidentiality, they cannot say much.

She was able to tell me that he had not completed his treatment and therefore she believed he would not be eligible. She then directed me to the board of parole, so I did call there. They gave me the same answer that since he had not finished his treatment, more than likely he would not be eligible. With news I did feel ease, however “more than likely” was not exactly fully comforting.

Another thing I did learn from the board of parole is that convicts are given a written review by the board. If the board thinks that the written review deserves an interview with the convict they are then scheduled for an interview, so it is a two-step process. I do suppose many already know that but I was not up on the info.

So last week after the review I checked and the status was not updated on the site………then of course I checked on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday………..and then today there it was ……..DENIED!!!

I do not like to be happy about another’s misfortune no matter what the case, however I was relieved that I have a little more time to continue life and improve my entire self, before dealing with his release.

So things to note:

- See if you can talk to your offenders counselor

- See if you can talk to the victim coordinator of the department of corrections

- See if you can talk to the victim assistance coordinator of the board of parole

If nothing else it may ease your mind or prepare you for the future


Victoria Placeo

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Personal Belief System after Rape

There of course have been many things to write about since my last post that I still want to cover, but I have a tendency to post when I am emotionally charged. I have to sum up what happened that got me steaming but it does lead up to rape so bear with me.

Fear of being judged and insecurity have been on my mind since last night………..I will explained what happened….

I do not know many people in this town I live in and those I do I do not get together with them often…so last night a girl invited me to go out for a bit and I did. The reason I have a tendency not to go out with certain individuals here is because they push their religion on me……but I did due to the fact that I feel I do not have many options for social engagement.

Moving on, so last night I was out an was talking about wedding planning (I did forget to mention to you all that The Rock and I got engaged last year) . I was talking about having it in our church and she proceeded to say she would come to the reception but not the ceremony…….her basic reasoning for this is that she will not condone a church that has false teachings. What is really odd about that IS THAT WE ARE BOTH CHRISTIANS, BELIEVE IN THE BIBLE, AND JESUS!

The conversation went on about my bad behaviors, how I need to be more obedient or God won’t forgive me etc. While I do believe some of what she said my blood began to boil………how could someone who believes in Christ sit there and judge me and my religion……..IT MAKES NO SENSE!

So what does this have to do with rape? Simply put prior to the rape some peoples beliefs and judgments about me bugged me but I usually brushed them off quite well, I used to look at them as beliefs are beliefs and one should respect others. Prior to the rape, if I found someone who condemned me so much I would have just blew if off and decided not to see them again………..but last night I was PISSED!

My point to all of this is how my emotions, beliefs, guilt, etc. have changed since the rape. I allow people even more to judge me and allow it to bother me. I have guilt after being judged and feel they may be right. Bottom-line I feel like I do not trust myself anymore since the rape.

My entire foundation of who I used to be has been shaken since the rape and I still cannot fully figure out why. I continue to work on these things and the only real theory I have about my foundation being shaken since the rape is this:

I was condemned by the defense a bit, I lost everything and then felt as though I deserved it, and lost a ton of control during and after the rape.

With all these factors I believe I taught myself that I was a not so great person and that no one should trust my judgment……….even myself.

What are your thoughts?

Victoria Placeo