I have a peculiar form of anxiety paralysis. This started shortly after I started school, as I would stress over an upcoming placement test, I froze in place, unable to move or speak, though fully aware. It ends in about 20 minutes, and I am fine. I was transferred to a Special Needs school, and they could adapt to my freezes.
This went on until I was preparing for my first actual date. I was semi-dressed rushing out of the bathroom, and dropped and scattered my make-up and hygiene things all over the floor when I opened the door. This time the paralysis included a black-out, and I awoke sitting on my bed, placed there by my Uncle B. Nothing is stressful like preparing for a first date, being seen in one’s underwear by a relative, unable to move. He comforted me and I made it on time, had a nice evening out, and went to kiss him goodnight, and blacked out again. Fortunately, he knew about my condition, and rang the bell for my Mom to take me in.
I made sure I was always in the company of someone who knew what might happen, and as the years went on, it appeared that I had more attacks at home or school than outside, which were more safe-zone areas. My psychiatrist was positive there was more behind the attacks than daily stress, but through her interviews, could not discover why. I went years dealing with occasional blackouts, and more common paralysis, and re-taking tests, and embarrassing myself in mandatory public speaking or stage acts.
This is my story, but it changes when my little sister was raped on a date. She took it very hard, and was sent to steady therapy sessions.
It was in her therapy that her psychiatrist found that our Mom was rather apathetic to her event. She asked my sister about it, and my sister said she knew that. She told the doctor that years before she had walked in on my Uncle and me. He had me on my bed, and was between my bare legs. He tried to get her to keep our little secret, but school told her not to, and she went to our Mom, who told he she would take care of it, and went back to cleaning.
My sister related periodically finding a room locked, or a condom in the trash. She was too young to do more than show Mom, who did nothing but throw the trash out.
I turned 16, and my sister convinced me to try her hypnotherapist, and our Mom signed me for it.
Under the new hypnosis, it was unlocked that I was still fully aware while paralyzed. The black-outs were a mechanism the deal with a different stress.
It seems that when I supposedly blacked out the first time, my Uncle found me in the bathroom doorway, and carried me to the bed, as I already knew. It was left out that to move me, he groped my bra area, and my derriere seating me. In my stress, I advanced to blanking out the unpleasant contacts.
When I also blacked-out at the end of my date, he guessed that beginning of sexuality induced a black-out. Actually, it was a defense mechanism to what he was doing. Since I didn’t make a fuss, he saw his opportunity. When I was paralyzed, he would have his unwilling partner, and I wouldn’t remember it.
I don’t know how many times he took advantage of me, but he took most chances he could get. It was not legal proof, and my Mom would not use the advice to place cameras or acquire a restraining order.
Between the two therapies, another related family secret was uncovered. The psychiatrist confronted our Mom about decades of history.
It was shortly after Mom hit puberty my Uncle came home and forced her. He intimidated her to silence with they would take her away to a special school. She stayed silent, and he had a steady outlet. This not only continued for years, but even at her wedding, through her marriage, my Dad’s funeral, and she was expert at going somewhere private so he could.
She would not go to the authorities on her brother. That lasted until he started with me. It was not just family tradition, but she was relieved of his burden.
We were removed, but charges weren’t filed. My black-outs subsided to very rare, but my paralysis, though less frequent, still continue, though I can briefly say a few words, and move my fingers with effort. My sister and I were to be married almost to the week, though she canceled hers. I have been married and have 2 beautiful children, though I had to have a monitor to call help lest I leave an infant untended for minutes. My sister has 1. Our Mom passed from cancer, but never accused her brother of wrongdoing. My Uncle has a restraining order, and is supposed to be in therapy. My sister and I both do hotline works.
I am Cy, I was raped, my sister was raped, my Mom was raped.
I will survive and stop the cycle.
— Cybelle, age 27