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Was this actually abuse? Trigger warning possibly

One-in-a-millionOne-in-a-million Posts: 605 Incredible Poster
So I’ve started therapy and quickly mentioned to her about a time when I was 16 any started talking to someone online who said they were 18. This led to them eventually saying they would track me down via my ip if I didn’t send them a photo, they had asked previously and I refused but now I was scared so I sent it out of fear he was going to track me. It was then revealed he wasn’t 18 bit actually a man in his 40s.

Thats as much as I told her but last session she asked if we could talk about it and to be honest it had been on my mind so I said we could. She said she was thinking about it a lot and wanted to explore what happened as it’s a crime and she could see from when we touched on it, it had upset me.

We opened it up a bit more but not fully and it’s brought up some more memories of that time. One being even though I was 16 my knowledge of sex was very limited and I didn’t know a lot, it was a very taboo subject in my family so I didn’t ask questions about things id heard about etc and the most schools taught us was how babies are made and what puberty was.

It’s brought up the memories of how when he would ask me if I knew what certain sexual related things were and I didn’t understand them he said he would explain, and thinking about it he used that to then get me to role play with him… for example he would say (insert whatever sexual thing I didn’t understand) is and then explain. Then follow it up saying “so if we were in a room together and I came over to you asking you to…” how would you do it? Then move on to what he would do etc etc

I remember it always made me feel uncomfortable but I thought he was just trying to help me understand the things I didn’t understand.

But thinking about it now setting the pictures aside was this actually abuse?

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    lunarcat522lunarcat522 Posts: 450 Listening Ear
    @One-in-a-million Sorry to hear you're struggling with this

    I'm not well-informed enough to say whether this is abuse or not but hopefully someone else on here can help advise you on their thoughts

    That aside I would definitely say that it sounds like you were taken advantage of through various tactics such as the fear mongering used to try and get you to send a photo

    It sounds like they took advantage of your age and lack of knowledge of sex/relationships as a way to initiate conversations that were of pleasure to him as he would explain the process of how things are done and imagining scenarios with you when you were a minor

    From his age it does sound like you were in a situation where you were manipulated in a fairly covert way from someone that knew what they were doing, and from the nature of the topic being discussed it sounds like you may have been at risk of online grooming at the time

    It does sound like from your discussions in therapy that this is something that is distressing you to look back on so it might be worth relaying this to your therapist if they don't know so they can respond appropriately and go at your own pace

    I just want to end this by saying none of this was your fault and I'm so sorry you went through this

    Your emotions and experiences are valid and we're always here to support you whenever you need on the mix <3
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    VicK_toriousVicK_torious Posts: 107 The Mix Convert
    edited April 12
    Hi @One-in-a-million
    I'd first like to say that I think you are very strong for sharing this with us, and how sorry I am for what happened..

    What you experienced is a form of sexual exploitation, since the guy deliberately threatened you in order to benefit your photos. As @lunarcat522 already mentioned, they did take advantage of the lack of knowledge you had on sexual education, which was completely rationalised for your age!
    Exploitation can be a form of abuse since he used emotional abuse to threaten and make you send the images, and be all means is an offend to do that especially to a minor.

    It's really improtant to trust your therapist with as much information you can, because they will be experienced on safeguarding and could protect you for further harm. Of course take things as slow as you want and remember that you being confortable and feel safe a huge deal for you and your theapist as well.

    TW:
    I don't know if you are familar with Stardoll? Its a 'kids' site where you can dress up etc and talk to strangers as well.. I had a similar experience with yours when I was very little around 13ish, where I had befriended this girl, that we would talk through chat, and she would always tell me how she would love to walk around naked when she was alone at home, and veryvery weird stuff that at the time I wouldn't even image they sounded that weird because i didn't know about sex and all. I only realised when i grew up and left this platform, and at 15 when talking to my school psychologist, this came up and he told me that what i described was grooming. That person was trying to get me to feel confortable with this kind of duscussions and later engage in more...

    Be careful out there, there are many sick and twisted minds <3
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    BensonEBensonE Posts: 134 The Mix Convert
    Hi @One-in-a-million

    I'm extremely sorry to hear you went through this. If you felt uncomfortable then it's 100% abuse. Abuse is such a wild field and its hard to open up about it
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    One-in-a-millionOne-in-a-million Posts: 605 Incredible Poster
    Thank you guys for replying. It’s been very up and down and ive been irritated with myself because this happened so long ago so I guess I feel like it shouldn’t bother me anymore. It’s definitely raised a lot of thoughts and feelings about it and I hadn’t realised how much opening up about it properly would have been. Talking to my therapist says X happened was the easy part in a way. It wasn’t until she asked if we could explore it more which I think was because I was like “yeah this happened blah blah blah.” As if it didn’t particularly bother me but then when it came to discussing it like properly it was like it was the 16 year old me again coming back out. Which in a way sucks but I know that probably a good sign that im actually acknowledging how it actually felt. I don’t know im not a therapist it’s just how I think it works, I might be completely wrong 😅
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    BensonEBensonE Posts: 134 The Mix Convert
    @One-in-a-million trauma works in mysterious ways I've supported a friend whom said what happened to her wasn't what the name for it is was that.

    I live with childhood trauma (not as bad as what you went through) but I still struggle to discuss it
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    AzzimanAzziman Moderator, Community Champion Posts: 1,895 Extreme Poster
    Hey @One-in-a-million, just wanted to chime in here. Thank you for sharing your experience on here - it's really brave, and it sounds like recounting the experience has resurfaced some memories. That's natural for therapy - often times, this can be the first time that we've felt we've had the space to talk about certain things, and naturally that can bring back memories of things we've tried to forget or suppress.

    In doing so, it can also make us reflect in hindsight about things that occurred, which perhaps didn't make sense at the time, but looking back might now be clearer. There is no shame in feeling that this bothers you - as others have mentioned, this was an awful experience you were put through, so it's natural to feel a way about it. Your feelings are valid. How does it feel to have a person with whom you can talk about these experiences? <3
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    Sunshine12Sunshine12 Posts: 106 The Mix Convert
    @One-in-a-million hey, I’m so sorry I had to go through that so young, I’m not well aware of the laws but what they did to u was most certainly wrong, from the situation it does sound a little like grooming which is a form or abuse, and forcing u to send pics is definitely a crime and abusive. Sending lots of love ♥️
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