Phoenix Fights

Fighting the FEAR, depression and BDP on a daily basis AND making my own bread. Bring it on 2016….


Daily Prompt: Release Me ROLLING IN THE DEEP


When I saw this Daily Prompt I automatically held my breath, my face froze and stomach twisted as the blog posts that were the most uncomfortable, shameful, painful and totally nerve racking immediately sprung to mind.

No hesitation, no deliberation.

When you read the above post (and the others if you wish), you’ll understand why.

Because it is usually the case that the worst harm sexual abuse inflicts is on our souls and psyches and not our bodies.

Tissues heal, bruises fade, cuts scab over as our body fights infection and autonomically seals, replenishes and protects itself.

But the hot, wet, smarting, pulsating wound of our shame, anger and fear sticks around so much longer, usually because our minds tell us it was all our fault, there is something wrong with us and we deserved no better.

And on that basis, we tend to continue to treat ourselves with disgust and contempt for years, allowing ourselves to be mistreated repeatedly, or hiding away from the opposite sex, convinced that everyone wants to do us harm so we will never let anyone close again.

Setting my story free was both terrifying and liberating as I’d kept it tucked away for decades and was sure that I’d be judged by all and sundry to be the dirty little slapper that I was.

But I’d totally misjudged my followers, and the support and succour they provided me over those four days helped heal my heart, mind and soul more than I can say.

Through sharing my story I realised that I was so much more than this bag of bones, flesh and fluid, and had I known this at the time, I would have forgiven myself more readily, and been open and willing to heal myself wholly instead of clasping my secret to me like an ugly, dirty, battered old doll.

If anyone reading has ever had experience of sexual abuse, I can’t tell you what to think or do, but I would say that sharing your story with someone, be it a counsellor, a family member or on here (anonymously or otherwise) will lance that wound, pour healing waters over it and let all the poison out.

Do that much for yourself.

For you are beautiful, God’s child, a unique, complex and extraordinary creation.

And the fact that some selfish, animalistic oaf (or oafs) took it upon themselves to avail themselves of your body without your permission, or by taking advantage or your vulnerability or lack of self esteem, should not clip your wings.

Flick them off, tend your wounds, leave them in the filthy gutter where they belong and fly away.

If you can forgive them, because it will benefit you, then do so.  If you cannot, don’t sweat it.  Leave them to their fate.

For you have better things waiting for you in your future.

Namaste beautiful sisters and brothers and thank you again for your love and support xxx


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Daily Prompt: Release me – Out with the old, in with the new | littlegirlstory
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  64. Daily prompt: release me | La chica de la burbuja
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  67. DP: Release Me. « Restawyle
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  76. Daily Prompt Challenge ~ “Free” | soletusknow
  77. Weekly Photo Challenge – The Hue of You (With abject apologies to poets everywhere and a bit about the daily prompt below) | Points of View
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  82. Release Me | The Nameless One




An opportunity has presented itself to me today that has left me feeling a combination of wildly differing, conflicting emotions.

Whilst in a fug of depression, distortion and pain the other week, I went through the motions of filling out a few application forms for jobs and voluntary work, not for one moment thinking any of them might come off, and in a matter of hours, duly forgot all about them.

If you’d asked me what they were for this morning, I honestly couldn’t have told you.

But today I was sent an application pack to interview to become a helpline operator for a rape and sexual abuse charity.

It’s voluntary, unpaid and will require some training and at least a years commitment but it’s not full time, I would potentially be something I’m good at and I could at last make a difference in a world where I sometimes, no, often feel I have no purpose.

Obviously my medical record might get in the way of this, and being an Empath I’d have to be careful to establish boundaries, plus I’d probably need to talk to Aunty C (my counsellor) about whether she thought I was up to it (she’s away so doesn’t even know about my remembering what happened to me all those years ago), but this could be a way of making something good out of something so very bad, and giving support, comfort and succour to other victims of sexual abuse so that they don’t get lost in a shit storm, bottle it all up and let it poison them, resulting in their distrusting anyone with a dick, like I did.

Maybe, just maybe, this could be a real turning point for me, I really, really hope so….

Namaste x




For the last 48 hours or so, I’ve scraped by in a bit of a daze really, but one good thing has come from this ‘Total Recall’ from hell.

I have learned to take comfort from the company of others.

Not for the entire two days you understand, no that would be too much of an about turn, but my twisted mind’s impetus to keep reliving and replaying all of the details of what happened that night again, and again make me at loathe to be alone with my thoughts for too long, which is something very new for me.

So much makes sense now.

  • My mistrust of men.
  • My wondering what they really wanted from me (as they couldn’t actually like me, could they?)
  • My low self worth.
  • My horror of rejection.
  • My inability to let myself be out of control.
  • My inability to fully relax when a boyfriend (or any man for that matter) stayed over in my home.
  • My secrecy and need for privacy.
  • My needing to be able to physically protect myself.
  • My always expecting and being prepared for the worst.
  • My always having an exit plan.
  • My readiness to ‘fight to the death’ when threatened.
  • My fury when presented with male aggression.

And all of this because some selfish, sexist, cowardly, misogynistic wanker could have a quick squirt and about 30 seconds of ecstasy that was probably forgotten within 24 hours (or once he’d fucked/raped someone else), whilst this has marred all of my relationships for over half of my life.

Don’t they realise this?

These rapists, these child abusers, these kidnappers, these opportunistic abusers?

Can’t they just have a wank over some porn like everyone else?

The darkest part of me would love to see them all gang raped up the arse by way of punishment so that they could live in shame, fear, self loathing and pain for the rest of their life, but that’s just ‘eye for an eye’ and nothing good ever comes from that.


I haven’t been able to cry at all.  I just feel frozen.

So many thoughts, so many realisations.

Babies never came for me, and I subconsciously used to wonder whether I was being punished, or that some fundamental damage had been done to me.

It was probably just as well, I’m so fucked up that any child of mine would have probably being a bit screwed up too.

Suffice to say, whatever libido I have recently recovered has completely and utterly disappeared, so this is probably a damn good excuse to stop seeing GM and/or going on any more dates for now.

But I don’t want this to turn me into a man hater.

I think that as part of a healing process, I need to spent time with all of the kind, gentle, safe men that I have in my life to remind me that there good ones are out there too, and hopefully this will heal my wounds, make me feel safe and thaw out the block of ice that is currently holding my heart captive.

Thanks again for all of your kind words, they nourish my tired, battered little soul, they really do 🙂

And to any guys who are reading or who have read about any of this, I guess you probably don’t know what to say and think it’s best to keep out of it?

I totally understand.

P.S. What has shocked and saddened me the most has been the number of bloggers who have had similar experiences to mine, and I’m touched by them taking their courage in both hands and taking the trouble to comment so kindly and supportively about mine.  Love and support right back at you xx

Namaste to all xx





Whilst I haven’t got anything that clever or eloquent to say tonight as I’m still a bit stunned at what was actually floating under the tip of that iceberg, I just want to thank you for your kind thoughts and words about my ‘Rolling in the Deep’ blog posts.

After I finished Part 2, I jumped in the shower and out of the door, and barely gave myself a second to absorb the horror of the memories that came bubbling to the surface.

Turns out that was a good thing.  My friend chattered away happily about her holiday as we had coffee and barely noticed my subdued state.  Afterwards, I walked round and round and round the park, then came home and fell asleep on the bed with my beloved cats.

I then took refuge in an episode of ‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ reunion, where these gloriously OTT, crazy, rich bitches screamed at each other over absolutely nothing, and now, just as I feel myself going under again, I’ve been invited around to see my friend G.

G has a lot of shit going on in her life right now, and I know I can happily sit there and not say a word whilst she shoves a glass of Frascati at me and tells me all about it, and distracts me from all the disgusting, horrible, soul numbing shit that came up for me today.

People who scream, and shout and talk over and at you really get on my nerves normally.

Right now?

I thank God for them.

And you.  I’m not used to people being there for me, and i appreciate it more than I can say.

So I’ll say it with flowers.

Big love xxxx





Well, I slept, but don’t feel rested.

Should have put this to bed before retiring, but will do myself the kindness of doing so before my day starts properly.

Hot, sweet, comforting tea instead of wine this time….

In the early 80’s I shared the flat with a group of girls and a couple of boys who worked in the same place/industry as me.  I don’t know if I could have called them friends, as those were few and far between even then.

I was very much into weights and fitness at that time and looking back and eschewing false modesty, I had carved myself a good, attractive, if muscly body, partly to appear stronger than I felt (or indeed was) inside, but also to try and find love.

At that time, I believed that my body was the best/only good thing about me.

A few times a year, we would all pool together and organise a house party.  There was much excitement as we shopped for booze and snacks, splurged our wages on brand new outfits, shifted furniture around so there was room to dance, and filled the bathrooms with steam, cologne, damp towels and fervent wishes as we primped and preened.

We girls scuttled back and forth from our rooms excitedly, comparing make up, admiring outfits, swapping/borrowing shoes and accessories, and as we congregated in the sitting room awaiting our guests with baited breath, one of them asked me with a knowing smile:

‘So, is he coming tonight then?’

I grinned back at her, raised an eyebrow and everyone cheered and whooped.

A couple of bodybuilding friends of mine, Danny and Elaine, were bringing a friend of theirs along whom they’d met whilst travelling.

John was a great big blonde hulk of an Aussie who was a country boy when back at home, so a bit green to life in the city.  Our eyes met across a crowded weights room so to speak.

Dan phoned later.

‘Mind if we bring John along on Saturday?’ he asked with a smirk in his voice, ‘he needs someone to make a man out of him!’

‘Oi you!’ I laughed.  But a shiver of excitement thrummed through me.

It was on.

I had bought a brand new dress in order to present myself in the best possible light.  It was elasticated and skin tight and, as intended, displayed my curves to their best possible advantage.  I guess those dresses were the eighties equivalents to the bodycon and everyone was wearing them.  But the bitchier of my friends would say behind my back that I shouldn’t wear them because they made me looked slutty.

Jealousy, I would think, dismissing them.  Because I was stupid enough to believe that a well honed, lightly tanned, sexy body would bring me the love of my life like it had once before.

But it didn’t.

And doesn’t.

Sexy bodies attracts those wanting sex.

There is so much I’d like to go back in time and say to that hopeful, excited, loveless, screwed up girl teetering down the stairs in her too tight, too low, too everything dress and fuck me shoes looking like a less subtle version of Pauline Calf.

But I can’t.

All I can do is watch the events of that evening materialise on this computer screen, and get it over with as quickly as possible.

The party gets underway.  I am off my usually strict diet, so I indulge in a few glasses of our infamous punch to kill my nerves.

What if he doesn’t fancy me?

What if he judges me on my face and not my body?

What if he doesn’t show?

I’d been stood up before and at that time, I thought that was my worse nightmare.  God, if only I knew.

An hour or so in, Dan and Ellie arrive, and as they enter the room I see with huge relief and excitement that John is behind them, looking all shy and nervous. Then his eyes alight on me, he looks me up and down and grins wolfishly.  I return this ‘tribute’ with a demure little smile and a flick of my long, teased, bleach blonde hair and wait for him to arrive at my side.

They push their way through the crowds and we chat a little.  Ellie hands me a big glass of something and John and I chat and banter.  I can’t for the life of me remember what either of us said.  Dan taps me on the shoulder, nods towards the door, and makes a gesture with his thumb and forefinger.  He’d brought along a joint.

I’m a total lightweight now when it comes to any kind of stimulant, but was even more so then.  I shook my head.  Ellie leans over and yells in my ear.

‘Come on, just have a bit!’ she bawls over the music, ‘don’t be boring!’

I look up into Johns huge, encouraging, doe brown eyes, shrug, follow them to the garden, and accept a couple of drags.

Almost immediately, the sky spins, and I feel sick.

No!  This cannot be happening!

I’m going to ruin my chances with John!

I stay for a while and chat, then, feeling the gorge rising, I excuse myself as discretely as I can, head to the mercifully empty bathroom and throw up as quickly and quietly as possible.  Locking the door behind me I quickly fix all signs of wear and tear on my face, clean my teeth, swish around some mouthwash, then return to the foray as if nothing has happened, hoping I’d got the worst of it out of my system.

‘Please make it stop’ I begged God/the universe/anyone, ‘he might be the one!’

But God had other things to do that night.

No sooner had I got myself another drink (so stupid!) than the rush of nausea returned, and I abandoned all dignity and staggered blindly off to the bathroom.

From there on everything is hazy.

I remember some guy (not John) standing behind me, holding my hair as I vomited profusely into the pan.

I remember lying on the floor, head resting on a rolled up towel.

I remember people laughing.

I remember Ellie forcing me to stand up, and putting me to bed.

I remember bitterly, dazedly berating myself for ruining an evening I’d been looking forward to for weeks and showing myself up in front of someone I might have spent the rest of my life with.

Then I slipped into unconsciousness.

This is the hard bit.

God help me.

Somewhere, sometime during the night, someone climbed into bed with me, took off my clothes and fucked me, groaning and moaning loudly whilst he humped me with every ounce of force and strength he had.

I remember groaning, pushing futilely and begging him to stop and leave me alone.

I know my eyes opened at one point but I couldn’t see his face, but I remember that the door to my room was ajar, letting in light from the hall.

Anyone and everyone could have passed by and seen what was happening.

No one came to my aid, even though I seem to remember at least one shadowy figure standing in the doorway.

Eventually he stops.

Some time passes.  I don’t know how long.

And then it happens again.

I don’t know if it’s the same guy or not.

It stops.

Then sometime later I hear a voice.

‘I can’t get out of the park’, it says coldly, ‘I’m going to have to stay.’

There was a big green in front the house; he must mean that.

I mumble something incoherently, and cringe as someone climbs into bed with me.

As daylight creeps into the bedroom the next morning, the first thing I notice is a bucket next to my bed and my knickers on the floor.

The second thing is a huge arm slung across my waist and a gentle snoring in my ear.

I try to turn my head, but pain pierces my brain so I wince and pull the duvet over my eyes.

What the fuck happened?

Then I remember.

The pounding.

The groaning.

The pain.

The pleading.

The moaning.

And then I remember something that Danny had said a few days ago.

‘Man I’d hate to live in the room next to John’s!  When he’s at it, he makes more noise than the woman!’

I can’t allow myself to think it.

I close my eyes miserably and drift back into unconsciousness.

Later I feel a hand gently, tentatively stroking my ribs and reaching down to stroke and explore my belly.

I turn and a pair of big, brown doe eyes meet mine queryingly.

We stare at one another for a moment.

Him not wanting me to remember.

Me not wanting to remember.  Wanting to believe he never even touched me.  And unbelievably, wanting to believe that he still liked me.

This is the bit I find the hardest to accept or forgive. I’ve had some lovely messages of support on the first part of this story, but I wonder what you’ll think of me after you read this.

It’s almost unbearable even to type this.

I don’t know what I thought.

That he never forced me?

That it was my fault?

That if we did it again, it would mean that I was never raped in the first place?

I have a friend that says she has never had a one night stand because she always made sure to sleep with them at least one more time as that, in her mind, rights the percieved ‘wrong’ and means that she’s not a scrubber, so maybe I was working from the same, warped, self hating principle?

Because that’s what happened.

I let him fuck me again.

Then he got up, said goodbye and left.

I knew I’d never see him again.

And, oh God, how I hated myself.

Not him.


I didn’t even love myself enough to cry.

It was late afternoon before I managed to drag myself out of bed, into the shower and downstairs, where I was greeted with a chorus of whoops and jeers from my other flatmates.

‘Well at least someone got lucky last night’ said one of the guys wryly, ‘any good?’

I yawned casually, hurling myself into an armchair and gazed in the general direction of the TV with a smug grin playing around my bruised, defiled, desperately lying mouth.

‘I’ve no idea what you’re talking about…’ I said faux innocently, playing to the gallery as they all laughed and threw cushions at me, except for two of the girls who exchanged knowing glances and eyed me with a glimmer of disgust in their mascara streaked panda eyes.


I felt like dog shit.

But whatever any of them thought of me, they bought it.  I think.

And from then on I even bought it myself.

I even told my friends that I’d pulled this gorgeous Aussie, but that he was a bit thick and crap in bed, so I probably wouldn’t be seeing him again.

Because I was in control.

Not him.

And that memory of him plunging into me as hard as he could whilst I begged him to stop?  I pushed that wounded, shredded, battered bit of myself down deep below the surface of my pysche, went to the gym and took my hurt, pain and heartache out of the weights and resolved never to think of it again.

Except for one night, when I was at the pub with my workmates and I saw a strangely familiar man smiling knowingly at me across the room.  He’s nice looking, well dressed, but for some reason, he really creeps me out.  I ignore him, and carry on chatting with my friends.

He comes over.

‘Hi!’ he says.

I return his greeting cautiously.

‘You don’t remember me, do you?’

He’s right; I don’t.

But I do.

‘I’m a friend of Dawns.  I was at your party the other week.  I held your hair whilst you were throwing up, remember?’

I laugh with mock embarrassment, then tell him I do remember him, and thank him for looking after me that night.

But he’s still looking at me in that ‘I know‘ way and the memory of that horrible, painful, sickening evening comes back full force.

We chat a little, then I make my excuses, say goodnight and head for home, trying my hardest to stop my brain working overtime.

He saw me puking up?

Bad as that was, I can accept that.

The figure in the doorway?

Best not think about that.

The second time I was fucked?

I do not, cannot, will not accept that.

Until now.

This is where I would try and round this blog entry up neatly to make it a complete, well written piece of work, perhaps throwing in something about what I had learned from the experience and/or what I would like you to take from it.

But I honestly don’t know what to say.  Because twenty five years later, I am still suffused with horror, shame and disgust at the events of that night.

Why didn’t I go to the police you might ask?

You know something, it didn’t even occur to me.

The eighties were very different times to these; I liked my attacker, I found him sexually attractive, I was dressed provocatively, I was probably going to sleep with him that night, and even if I had been believed, no one would have sympathised or supported me, not even Dan or Ellie, because I had ‘asked for it’

I think I saw them once or twice again after that night, and I could have sworn I saw the ‘I know‘ look in Dan’s amused eyes (and embarrased dismay in Ellie’s), and invariably the friendship dwindled and we eventually lost contact with one another.

I think they knew what happened, and most painfully, didn’t think there was anything wrong with it, and might even have encouraged it.

I’m trying really hard to reach back in my mind and comfort that stupid, fucked up, tarty, misled girl with the body of a warrior, face like stone and the tender wounded, contracted interior of a peeled prawn, and tell her it wasn’t her fault, she didn’t know any better and that it is time to forgive, both that stupid, ignorant, disgusting, selfish ape and herself.

But all I can feel right now is numb.

Fuck!  I’ve just had a call from someone I was meant to meet half an hour ago.

I have spent 3 HOURS writing this.

Gotta go.





I’m trying not to drink, but I need a glass or two of wine to do this.

Today has been a strangely dry day when it came to thinking about something to blog about.

I felt odd, stuck, vaguely restless.

‘Come on!’ I urged myself silently, fighting the lure of the TV, ‘you must have something to say today!’

And then, just in the last hour, I was given something.

Be careful what you wish for, you may just get it.

If anyone had asked me twenty years ago, if I’d ever been raped, I’d have told them ‘No’.

Fifteen years ago I would have said the same.

Ten, ditto.

And on the surface, I would have looked convincing.  I could have said it in a court of law and would have been believed.

But in the last nine years or so, every now and then a memory would float to the surface of my consciousness like a dead fish in a murky, polluted, junk infested river, and I would reach out automatically without even thinking and shove it right back under, out of sight.

And it would disappear for a while, but every now and again it would materialise again, with a blip, blip, stinking and rancid, it’s grey, filmy eyes glaring at me with scorn and accusation, and I would shudder, close my eyes, push hard and replace it with something else; another memory, a song, an urgent errand, a drink, but as it receded, deep in my heart, I knew it would return.

And it did; the blips turned into splashes, the stink got overpowering, and it got bigger, more bloated, more gaseous, more buoyant and it got harder and harder to ignore.

So one day I grabbed the slimy thing, looked it square in it’s dead, glassy eyes and said ‘Yes, it did happen.  Now leave me the fuck alone!’ then hurled it back into the waves, watching it bob away on the current, where it stayed, just in my peripheral vision, no longer intruding, but never too far away.

In the late 80’s early 90’s a lot of my friends were into house music, trance and raves.  They would get a message or a call, then rush off out to a warehouse party in the country or on a beach, take ecstasy, acid, speed, and dance their arses off, returning the next morning on a high, banging on about how much they loved the whole love, peace, unity thing they’d experienced that defined that decade.

Me?  No.

I didn’t and don’t like not being in control.  I might have some spliff with people that I trusted, drink to merry inebriety, but I actively avoided getting into a state where I was no longer able to look after myself.  My friends would roll their eyes and take the piss out of me for being such a control freak, and I would take their baiting in good humour, crowing when they finally came down, and had to stagger off to bed full of misery to recover.

My young nieces and nephews have over the years taken me into their confidence about their curiosity or experiences with drugs.  Careful not to put them off by having a pink fit or preaching, i would chat to them about what I knew about each pill, what it did, the side effects, how they might feel the next day, then give them the only piece of advice they ever need; only buy from people you trust, and only ever get wasted when you are with and going to stay with people you trust.  Because if you are are wasted in the wrong place at the wrong time, anything can happen to you and you won’t be able to protect yourself.

I would say this casually, nonchalantly, usually not looking them in the eye, like it was no skin off my nose, like a friend, or older cousin might do.  I would never betray my deep concern, my fear, my desperation that they take this on board, as it might make me more of a un-cool ‘worrying about nothing’ adult like their parents, or, worse still, make them curious as to why I stressed this so emphatically.

As far as I know, for the most part, they have taken this advice seriously.  And let’s be honest, if something had happened to them, they would be unlikely to tell me anyway.

I just hope to God that if anything does happen, that they love themselves enough to report it or at the very least, confide in someone they love and be comforted.

I’ve alway avoid documentaries about sexual abuse; I have however watched ‘The Accused’ about six times despite the shocking scenes in that pool room.  I think it’s because in the end, the perpetrators get what’s coming to them so it must be in some way cathartic to me.

If only it was the same in real life.

I had planned an early night tonight to try and get myself into getting up early instead of sleeping in, but for some reason I turned on the the TV just as this documentary was starting.

It covered the story of Juliet, a strong, sassy, confident woman who went out to the pub one New Years Eve to ring in the new year with a friend. The friend didn’t show, so she sat at the bar drinking rather than spending it alone.  At some stage of the evening, she either had her drink spiked with something or just got very drunk, and then she was ejected by the door staff.

You see her in some security camera footage, and she could barely stand.

I feel like I’m going to throw up just watching her.

She then tried to totter home via an alley next to the pub, and was raped and forced to perform oral sex on someone or two people she didn’t know.  She woke up the next day with a bruised body and mouth wondering what the hell had happened to her. The documentary, along with showing the day to day running of a sexual assault referring centre, tracks her story from the day she reports the crime on camera to the eventual arrest of her abuser and, thankfully, his sentencing and incarceration.

it is tough viewing. Especially as I feel her pain, shame and anger more than the average viewer.

I was raped when I was about twenty five years old in my own home by a friend of a friend.

I’ve never told anyone about this before.

Not even my counsellor.

I can’t do it now.  But I’ll tell you tomorrow.