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This Is Personal But We Can Never Have Another Royal Commission

Not sure I can do this…

It’s not the sort of thing I normally write and someone accused me of making a joke about one of the few things I’ve actually written from the heart.

I mean, I do understand and I sort of feel like everything I’m about to say is trivial and not worth saying.

I guess that’s how they want you to feel.

This was just a couple of friends who tricked me into the bedroom when I was thirteen and pulled my pants down and humiliated me in ways that I have no wish to describe but it involved mocking me and using textas to write on my penis.

I understand that it’s incomparable to the pain and humiliation of rape victims over the years. Or the victims of all sorts of sexual assault.

It was just boys being boys.

However, one of the boys was up on charges in his later life and I wondered if I should contact the prosecutors and say he was always a psychopath…

About six months after the « event »? « incident »?, I walked across the classroom and started hitting one of them because of something he said and I kept hitting him until he held me down and suggested that there was something wrong with me because all he’d said was that I was a dobber and I was lying about it because of a completely different incident.

I never saw what they did as assault at the time.

I never reported it.

It was just embarrassing that two boys could hold me down and do what they liked, and I just want to say that I can’t fully understand the pain of what some women are going through and I don’t wish to jump on some sort of bandwagon, but I get it, if only part of it and not the whole patriarchy thing.


Apropos of nothing – Give me a fair go, says teacher accused of sex offences.

By the way, why on earth did the Liberals launch all those Royal Commissions into Labor politicians if the police were enough?

And Peter Dutton, if you think that the charges have been shown to be « unfounded » it’s clear you had to leave the police force…

I’m going to press publish now, because by morning, I’ll wonder whether it’s even worth saying.


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  1. JudithW

    Yes it was worth saying…

  2. RosemaryJ36

    Thank you!

  3. Lawrence Roberts

    Au contraire. A Royal Commission should have a Royal. Harry Windsor seems to be free at the moment and I understand his wife makes a fine plate of watercress sandwiches.

  4. Regional Elder

    This personal story is absolutely germane to events of the last couple of weeks Rossleigh.
    Thanks for sharing it.
    The inclusion of the sympathetic Herald-Sun story of a teacher accused of sexual abuse of a minor raises many questions about attitudes in Australian culture, and is apposite to your own story of being bullied many years earlier.

  5. Michael Taylor

    This has pushed me over the edge, Rossleigh. Im triggered.

  6. paul walter

    Dictatorships do not do meaningful commissions of inquiry.

  7. leefe

    A dreadful thing to have experienced, Rossleigh. Re the HeraldSun story: why is it that when a matter is sub judice we have to tiptoe around saying negative things about the accused, but MSM can publish what is essentially a glowing tribute to them? Surely that would have as much a chance of influencing a trial as reporting on (for instance) previous allegations of inappropriate behaviour. (yes I’m looking at you, Christian Porter).

  8. Lurline

    This is a cut and paste of what I shared on Facebook yesterday, I just shared it again but unblocked my genetic family from seeing it, because I’m sick of protecting them and not looking after me.

    You know what, maybe if my father hadn’t raped me from the age of 2 until he died when I was 8, and the doctor my mother spoke to when I disclosed to her at the age of 6 or 7 hadn’t lied and said it was an aberration and would never happen again, and I hadn’t been relentlessly bullied at school in Mukinbudin, and hadn’t been sent to boarding school when my family lived only 5 km away, and hadn’t developed early and been repeatedly referred to as jailbait by grown men from the age of 12, and hadn’t lost my virginity to an adopted 15 year old cousin at the age of 13 (who i had a crush on, and begged to have sex with me so I’d find love), I wouldn’t have spent the last 6 hours in tears.

    And maybe I wouldn’t have PTSD, and depression, and anxiety, and a myriad of personality disorders. And maybe I would’ve lived up to my potential, and not been a single mother of 4 by my 30th birthday. And maybe I wouldn’t have drifted in and out of abusive relationships all of my life, apart from one 14 year relationship with the one decent man who has ever loved me properly.

    And maybe I wouldn’t, at the age of almost 54, be starting the education I should’ve begun at 18. Which is once again being sabotaged.

    And if that hadn’t have happened, maybe I wouldn’t have got groomed by a paedophile who raped my daughters (and possibly my sons).

    But you know what, not once have I blamed my family for what happened to me. I blame myself for what happened to my children. And I know for certain they blame me, they don’t respect me. When I need help none is offered, when I beg for help, I’m told they’re too busy.

    I’ve blocked my family from this post, I hope I managed to block them all, but if I missed anyone I’m sorry, I can’t help you to unsee what you’ve just read.

    I’m determined not to let this make me suicidal, not this time, but fuck it, why me? And why the fuck did I also get all the physical ailments from both sides of the family?

    Why can’t I just get one break in my life that gives me a chance to get ahead?

    You know what? #metoo I’ve been raped, I’ve been psychologically abused, financially abused, sexually abused, neglected, unloved, physically abused and I’m fucking sick of taking it out on myself.

    There is no God, no benevolent power. Just evil. What the fuck kind of benevolent being treats their creation like this.

    I’ve had enough, but I hope the people I didn’t block from this post, my chosen family, my comedy family, the friends who’ve stuck by me, can rally and help me get through this, because for 54 years I’ve been trying to do it alone, with no help and perhaps even sabotage from the family I was born into, the ones I married into, and the ones I gave birth to.

    I give up on them, but I’m determined not to give up on me. I beg you all please help me.

  9. wam

    dear rossleigh,
    the fact that you write for a group such as this shows you are different enough to have been noticed as a kid.
    There is ample evidence that children in groups do terrible violent things to other children from taunts to bulger..
    Often based on those seen as not the norm.
    Some teachers could sense the class currents and there was peace and relief. Sometimes a reaction, like your violence so far out of character that the group behaviour stopped.
    Sometimes a protector changed the group and peace.
    But mostly the growing up period succeeded in change.
    For some like keith and lurline the trauma inside had to be hidden at all costs.
    How many kids did we meet without understanding their sensitivity?
    How many kids did we as teachers miss?

  10. Vikingduk

    More tragic stories from the used and abused. Thank you both for sharing your pain. What’s to be done to rectify this dysfunctional society we have created? We have school children, university students, politicians, priests and nuns, fathers and mothers all guilty for their choices to prey on the weak. On and on it goes, the lunatics have taken over the asylum, compassion subjugated by hate leaving so many damaged people with lifelong problems.

    For what it is worth, I am sorry for the damage done to you both and to all the others that have experienced abuse. Sorry is nowhere near enough, massive changes required. Got to stop this shit from happening. How?

  11. New England Cocky

    If I fossick around i n the shed for a while I think I may be able to find the old tin of green rings used to emasculate male lambs into wethers.

    It was a painful process, taking about three days to compete the separation of the scrotum + testes and setting back lamb growth compared to not emasculated or even cut male lambs by about three weeks. Like I said, if I fossick around …..

  12. Mary Cotter

    Absolutely of relevance Rossleigh (whom I have the biggest crush on…) and yes thank you for sharing – humiliation is part of it, and I’m sure boys that bully are at a higher risk of growing up to be men that rape. But Lurline, I’m very concerned about you but have absolutely no idea how I could be of help to you! All I can say is a pathetic ‘don’t give up’.

  13. Carina McNaughton

    My heart breaks for you. Your story is important.Thank you for sharing.

  14. Kaye Lee

    The deliberate humiliation. The degradation. Feeling powerless. Then shame.

    It’s hard to talk of one’s own experiences because there are always others whose we may think worse. But we must keep telling our stories. It’s not a competition…it’s a growing voice. And show how it starts. This idea that someone else can violate you in such a personal way to satisfy some desire of theirs must be called out.

    The desire might be sexual, it might be a superiority thing, it might be a power thing…whatever. View each other as people first – with respect and with rights – in partnership, not domination.

    Rossleigh, there will be many people thinking right now about their own stories. And that’s what we need to make change.

  15. Vikingduk

    Well said, Kaye Lee. Cheers.

  16. Keith Davis

    Kaye Lee’s comment is spot on Rossleigh .. “But we must keep telling our stories. It’s not a competition…it’s a growing voice.”

    One voice is an unheard echo in a thimble. Two voices start to stir the air. One hundred voices start opening ears. And thousands of voices become a crescendo that cannot be denied.

    Thank you for your strength Rossleigh in writing what you did.

  17. DrakeN

    Thanks, Rossleigh and Lurline.
    These truths need to be aired within the general public and all shaming of victims regarded as supporting the offenders.

    From the reams of material which I have read on the topic, much sexual offending is about power and contol; often a need to dominate and/or prove one’s superior position, sometimes, as in the case of child molestation, because the offender feels a lack of power in their relationships with adults.
    People who already hold power over others often offend simply because they feel that they can do so without consequences: the cases of institutional offending is likely a combination of all of these factors combined with opportunism.
    As wam points out, the drunken victims leave themselves open to opportunism, especially where the offender’s inhibitions are also drowned in alcohol.
    From a very early age I learned to not be drunk or in anyway disabled (which is what being drunk is) in any place where advantage may be taken of me, physically, mentally and/or materially – it is akin to sloughing one’s armour in a war zone.
    Getting the other person inebriated has long been stock-in-trade for the shonky saleperson, the career diplomat, the international spy, the political candidate etc. etc.
    There are, always have been and always will be “Bears in the woods, wolves in the forest and snakes in the grass.”
    Life is not the blissful Utopia which we would like, and often imagine, it to be.

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