Tempest: Fighting the Storm
My name is Tempest and I am sharing my sexual abuse and rape story with you today. I wanted to make note that I have no grudges over anybody in my life. This is my perspective of my sexual abuse/rape life. This wasn't the only area of trauma that I dealt with, but the other parts aren't part of the message I want to share right now.
Here is a video if you would prefer to watch me tell my story. Keep in mind, the video is not as updated as the blog post. I have always been in the mindset to grow my mind and dive into knowing more about my experiences by questioning them throughout my life with other people that were involved (family and friends). As I do this, I learn more about specifics and my memories become more and more accurate.
Around 8-10 years old, after a couple of years of Cinderella trauma with my stepmother and stepsisters, my dad didn't know how to handle my personality and traumatic mind at the time (my mom left us at 4 years old), so he sent me to live with my grandfather. My grandfather and I built a weird relationship. He was saying to everyone else in my family how I would get yeast infections all the time and when I think back at it, candy and snacks were his way of manipulating me to love him even more (I didn't get things like that often before I lived with him). Anyway, he would claim that he would have to put cream on me for these yeast infections, but I am pretty sure it was just lotion, or the famous Aquaphor, so he could touch me. (It was unlikely because of my age to get one yeast infection, let alone at least 50 of them).
Slowly that progressed, and my dad would have times when after a year of living with my grandfather, I would be taken back to visit him in the summer. My dad would eventually send me back to my grandfather because he didn't know how to help me best. Throughout these 18-24 months, I was progressively being touched more and more until one-time "medicine" wasn't attached to the situation anymore. I woke up one day next to my grandfather, because that was common for me, and he was touching me. I asked, "Can we get food?" and he said, "in a little bit." So I just laid there, very still, at 10 years old. For the first time, I felt the feeling of something being wrong. A few months or less after this, I was taken away from my grandfather's place for the last time.
My grandmother divorced my biological grandfather before the experiences I described above. She was remarried at this time. This one screwed with my mind a bit more though. At age 11, I was forced to move to my grandmother's and grandfather's place about 1000 miles away from everything I knew. (My birthplace is Bullhead City, AZ). Their home was in Illinois, and the saddest part was I missed my biological grandfather more than my sister at the time. (It could be said I was possibly taking on aspects of Stockholm Syndrome. The years with my biological grandfather got scary in different ways, like anger scary, but that's all I'll say about that for now).
I moved in with my grandparents and at first things were okay. For the first couple of years, I was lazy and didn't do much other than watch TV. I was allowed to do things in this environment though. Somehow, around 13-14 years of age, things started coming out more with this new grandfather I didn't know all too well. This time was different. He was even more manipulative.
He would start arguments to make it so I would "suck up" to him because he loved the attention. With pictures he took of me, he would zoom in on my breasts and ass as I started going through puberty. Of course, my grandmother was always in denial when I brought up weird things he was doing. He would do things like moving the bathroom curtain down a couple of inches, so he could peak at me when I went to shower. (I caught him with this. I saw his body out the window, and he knew, so when I stormed out of the bathroom he claimed to have seen a shooting star the whole time because he saw me storm out and thought I would tell his wife. I didn't because I was stupid at the time). There were nights where I would wake up without my shirt on, so who knows what he did to me when I was sleeping.
He would get braver as the years went on and would straight up say things that were inappropriate like, "I am jealous of your boyfriend because I want to be the one to grab your breasts and butt." I didn't have much to say to things like that, as you can imagine. No one believed me, even the boyfriend at the time didn't at first, saying to my grandmother one day how "[he] doesn’t seem as bad as Tempest says," after meeting him days before. Of course, that was a whole ordeal.
Even my grandfather manipulated me enough to make me look like the insane one. At one point, when I threatened to tell my grandmother about everything, he said that I should. We all went into my room, and I tried to tell her the things that he did, but in the end, it didn't matter because she was in denial, and he made it seem like I was insane. At one point, I saw bloody porn on my little laptop after my grandfather had used it. He seriously had stuff he needed to work through from his life, but never did. He confided in me more than his wife about his past and I knew this because he told me.
There was a lot of manipulation with him as well. He would purposely start arguments, so then my grandmother wouldn't be happy with me, and then I would have to "suck up" to him and he loved it. He would also get upset for things like me not wanting to be kissed by him at age 13. He would get angry at me because I would not want him to slap my ass at age 13. This was typical behavior that I had to deal with, all the time, every day.
Because I didn’t feel wanted by anyone in my family, I didn’t really know who to turn to, which sucked ass. I also had to deal with my grandmother during this time too. Anytime my grandfather's behavior had been brought up, my grandmother and I would get in fights. There was one time in particular that stood out when my grandfather was at work. I was talking about my grandfather's behavior, and also trying to confide in my grandmother, telling her about my depression and the feelings of wanting to kill myself. At one point I brought up my grandfather, so I believe that's why she said that I should do it. During this fight, my grandmother started hitting me in the face. She wouldn't stop, so I slapped her. She took a step back, adjusting her glasses. This made her tell my grandfather, as well as call my father telling him what happened. Even though my grandmother had a way of saying hurtful things to anybody (my father has broken down into tears because of things she has spoken to him) my father yelled at me, defending my grandmother, saying how I should never hit an adult, regardless of what the situation was. I disagree. Sorry, not sorry.
Moving on the most significant part of it all, at 14 years old, my grandparents and I had to move out of the house we were living in because of my grandfather becoming unemployed (grandmother never worked), and so we moved into a new smaller place. Guess where my grandfather got his next job?
A camera/security company.
I noticed things like how he knew stuff before I said anything related to it. An example I can give is when he would have inappropriate conversations with me related to masturbation or other more motherly topics. These weren't normal father-daughter awkward talks too. He started them and enjoyed to talk about weird erotic things with me. So furthermore, there would be times when I would try new things with masturbation like ice cubes on the nipples. I was a 15-17-year-old teenager at this time. Who can blame me? The next day, after I've already attempted this, my grandfather would suggest for me to use ice cubes randomly for masturbation. He asked, "Have you thought of it?" I was dumbfounded. (There are more details to this, but I don't even remember how he brought up the conversation).
I was very cautious about everything I did in that house. There were many more situations like this. There was a point where I moved in with my boyfriend when I was 17 years old. This was because of more manipulation, trauma, and me accidentally, on purpose running my grandfather over with my car backing out of the driveway (I think he walked behind the car on purpose. The car was already backing out and he came out last minute. That's beside the point).
I moved in with my boyfriend and his parents and was there for about a month before something happened. I get pulled out of my high school classroom senior year and taken the principal's office. There were a couple of cops in one of the offices, and one of them needed to talk to me. They weren't local police either. They stated who they were, but don't remember entirely who they said they were for sure. If I had to guess they were part of the State Police Department, compared to the local police. Long story short, one of the policemen told me my grandfather was arrested for distribution of child pornography. There were so many details to keep track of, but the reason I was dragged into all of this was because at one point the cop asked me during this interview if I knew that my grandfather worked for a security/camera company. I answered with, "yes I knew." He then continued to ask if I wanted to know if there were any recordings of me on his computers, but as he was saying this, I cut him off and said I didn't want to know anything that he did while I was in that house. The cops question almost seemed counterintuitive though because would he have asked if there weren't recordings of me masturbating (or other things) involved in this case? I mean, my step-grandfather did get 8 years for child distribution. My former therapist and I agreed that 8 years was a little longer than normal with that type of crime. (Even if it shouldn't be). I told the cop that I would frequently have to check the house between being 16-17 years old because I didn't feel safe. I already had a feeling that he was recording me when I was living with him. After this talk with the cop he said I needed to call my father and let him know what was going on. My dad seemed confused because I ended up being right about everything that I was probably poorly telling people for the sake of love (silly, I know). I told my dad that after my grandfather had been arrested, he told the cops that he was in love with me and wished that he could have erotic relations with me.
After that, while I was living with my boyfriend, I would have intense PTSD moments where I would see my grandfather committing suicide in front of my eyes by slicing his throat. This was more than likely related to all the times he told me he wanted to commit suicide, not to mention my grandmother was freaking out and was trying to get ahold of me right after I saw the cop. She told me that I should be concerned about the safety of myself and my boyfriend's family. She said that there were federal police there when he was arrested, as well as every cop car she'd seen before on TV. She was exaggerating, but who knows by how much. Luckily, I wasn't there when it happened. Things sometimes do work out, oddly enough. When he got arrested, my grandmother equated it with being "worse than being a serial killer." She has a lot of problems inside too, with marrying two men that did sexual things to her granddaughter being just one of them.
I was still kind enough to try to email my grandfather after he was in prison. Since the beginning of 2019, I have stopped communicating with him. However, even when I tell him to leave me alone, he is still writing me letters and sending Christmas cards. I did call the actual prison letting them know that I don't want communication with him anymore. He sent a Christmas card since then, but it does seem like maybe he will leave me alone after he is out. At least that's all I want from him. The advice I was given about him getting out was that he is a type to keep manipulating me to come to him after he is out, so I think if stand my ground, that's enough.
Before my relationship with my husband in high school (15 years old), I was with a guy for a few months, and because of everything that was going on in my life, I think he pushed it too far. He acted surprised when I let him grab my breasts, and at that point I think he started realizing that I had a lot going on in my life to be that comfortable because he looked shocked. So as time moved on, he decided to take advantage of it.
One day it got to the point where I tell him that I'm still not ready for sex, but I am okay with other things if he wants that. He then goes on to say to me, after only 2 minutes of me saying that, "well you're ready now."
I was still the whole time. I didn't know what to say. He then precedes to rape me. (That's the technical wording, but I still never really felt like it. Probably because it wasn't as violent as people see on TV or movies). Since I didn't know any better given the bullshit in my family, I continued the relationship with little knowledge (being in denial) that it was really wrong. This happened several times afterward because I never stopped it. If I believed in myself and stopped it, it would have never been so bad. I kept hoping he would care for me though, instead of the sex.
In a church once, I was a smart ass to him because he was a dick with how he was talking to me. I told him that if he didn't stop being a dick, I was going to take out his braid, and what do you know, he said a crappy comment again, so I took it out. He punched me in the mouth because of this. Nothing extremely hard, but enough to make my jaw hurt for a couple of days. This was in church. Not that I'm religious anymore (spiritual all the way), but still. Also, a lot of my peer pressure came from him as well, with him thinking it's okay to start a make-out session in the middle of the church.
He told me how much he loved another girl towards the end of our relationship. I asked him if he thought that could prevent us from being together, and he said no. This was a big reason why he and I didn't work out together though, and I'm thrilled that it turned out this way. I think he had some part of him that knew what he was doing wrong to me because he did end up breaking it off, and I am extremely happy about it in the long run.
Some key advice to take away from my story: Learn always and believe in yourself. You can get through whatever you are getting through. I know it may not seem like it, partly because it's possibly happening to you right now, but if I can do it, you can do it too.
"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond to it.”