Tag Archive | sex

Revealed Chapter 5: Obedience and the Barter

Trust me when I tell you that one never really knows another person, even after being married and/or living with someone for a long time ~ even decades.  I really only barely knew my new husband of less than a year when we had our first conjugal visit in Attica State Prison, Attica, NY in early 1984.  I made arrangements for my two daughters, ages 3 & 5 at the time, to spend that weekend with my parents, I believe.  I wonder now, what were my parents thinking?  I can now put myself in their place, happily watching their precious granddaughters while their youngest daughter, at an inexperienced age of 25, goes off for a three day weekend with her new murderous husband inside the walls of a maximum security prison.  What were they thinking?  What was I thinking?!  They never said a word; never said “don’t go, it’s too dangerous”, or “what are you doing?”.  How I wish they had.  I wished they’d have talked some sense into me, or at least tried.  Perhaps they felt it was futile.  If only they’d tried. 

 I was excited at the prospect of getting to know my new husband of less than a year in the “Biblical sense” as they call it.  I had consulted with other friends of mine who had attended these types of visits ~ conjugal visits.  You go to the correctional facility on a Friday early morning, and you leave (potentially in one piece) on Sunday afternoon.  During that time, the couple (with or without family/children) are housed in a mobile home in the middle of the facility complex ~ where several (maybe 6 or 7) mobile homes are made available for such conjugal visits.  The guards on the towers surrounding the yard are on watch 24/7, and the inmate must “report” to the guards every 6 hours around the clock.  That means they must open the door of the mobile home, stand in the doorway and wave to the nearest guard and stay there until they are recognized and acknowledged.  Then they can return to their business.  If they do not report as required or on time, a guard comes to your abode and makes his presence known in a very boisterous way… to be certain that everyone is “safe” and all is well.  They come heavily armed and with an attitude because you made them come down off that wall.

 The visiting spouse or family brings all food items that will be used over the weekend, as well as any clothing and personal items that are needed.  Everything is rifled through meticulously when you check in at the yard.  Well, they don’t check internally.  Conjugal visitors are then lead to the mobile home that will be occupied for the next 36 or so hours to wait for their inmate of choice. 

 I would begin unpacking and refrigerating perishable food items before BH would make his entrance.  I would also “unpack” his supply of drugs that I was required to smuggle in, being careful not to be in view of any windows where guards can see in.  The anticipation of waiting for my new husband to arrive was distracting… that and knowing I’m deep inside a state prison known for riotous uprisings, with relatively no protection from my point of view.  At last he would arrive, and we would begin getting to know each other.  Besides a few “quirks”, I thought we would have a good time and bond and be able to relax for a change, rather than sitting in an uncomfortable visiting room for hours on end.

 I was immediately introduced to some of BH’s “wifely rules” (I guess you could call them).  I was not allowed to be alone, anywhere, throughout the visit.  Yes, even when I had business in the bathroom, whether it be a shower, a bath, or “using the facilities”, he would be there ~ watching me.  Conversely, if he had to do the same, I would be required to follow him and remain in his presence at all times.  Even if I was asleep when he had to report every 6 hrs., I was awakened to be at his side near the door.  That’s tough to get used to.  I was required to perform whatever sexual favor he deemed he wanted, whenever he wanted it and wherever he wanted it.  The favor was not required to be returned to me.  Additionally, I was not allowed to share in the stash of drugs I had so dutifully brought into the facility, unless he felt he wanted to share.  He would eat whenever he wanted to, and I would be required to fix whatever it was he wanted.  Our meals/menus and list of food items had been previously decided upon, and everything prepared was to his liking.  It basically turned out that I was his “beck and call girl” and he was stoned most of the 36+ hours we were there.  Believe it or not, I was happy with it.  I convinced myself that I needed the “structure” of such a relationship to keep me in line, as he put it.  I was brainwashed in one weekend.  Granted, the brainwashing started long before our conjugal visit.  This is just what he used to sink his controlling clutches deeper into me and cement my complete obedience to him, inside and outside the prison walls.  And, indeed, I was completely obedient.

 Months later he put my obedience to the ultimate test with our next (and last) conjugal visit.  He had been transferred to Great Meadow Correctional near the Vermont border, and we were granted a conjugal visit inside that facility in early 1984 ~ it was around our 1st anniversary, I think.  It warranted the same rules/regulations as Attica, as with all maximum security prisons, I presumed.  I was to bring steak, potatoes, vegetables, his favorite snacks and Valium and pot.  This time, though, (he said) things would be a little bit different, and he had a “surprise” for me.  My pre-visit shopping list included several sex toys that he’d requested I bring.  And, I assume, that the guards are used to seeing such things in their luggage search.  So I dutifully purchased what he’d requested without question.  After all, I’m sure he knew what he was doing.

Great Meadow maximum security correctional facility (also known as “Comstock”). Located just a ways north of Glens Falls, NY

 When I arrived on Friday, and we got settled in to our accommodations, he began to explain to me that the inmate prison population has a system of “barter”, and that he’d made a “deal” with a friend of his for some of my time during this visit.  The friend was doing life, and would never have a conjugal visit or be able to get married etc., so it was arranged that, for the exchange of some drugs, this friend would come to our mobile home during the visit on the pretense of fixing an appliance that had stopped working, which is common practice.  Of course, there was no broken appliance.  After the exchange of drugs, I would be taken by the friend into the bedroom where I would be expected to do as asked for a period of 3 hours.  I was not allowed to say “no” or refuse in any way, as that would make my new husband “look bad” in the eyes of the prison population, once word got out that I was uncooperative.  It was all about him being a “stand up guy”.

 As nervous as I was, the guy (I never knew his name) arrived at about 5:30 p.m. and he took me by the hand to the bedroom.  I looked nervously and unsure at BH, and he smiled and nodded that I should go.  The door closed and I was at the literal mercy of this person whom I’d never met.  After the first slap that sent me reeling, I knew I was in for a long and painful time of it.  For three hours, he beat and raped me time and again, while my husband sat in the livingroom watching t.v. and getting wasted.  I was not allowed to scream, or bring attention from the guards for fear of retribution from my husband.  But I managed to cry silently throughout.  This person was obviously experienced at hitting where bruises and cuts would not show, and I found out the hard way that the “toys” were for his benefit, not BH’s.  Finally, after the third hour passed, he left me there barely conscious and exhausted. 

 I remember laying there for awhile trying to catch my breath and regain my senses, and I was thinking how glad I was that I hadn’t brought Kristen and Karalyn as I’d thought I might.  Thinking about what they might be doing at that moment as they revel in their grandparent’s loving care. I was grateful then that my parents were such caring, loving grandparents and I was sure I wanted to be just like them when I grew up.  I finally got the courage to take inventory of my cuts and bruises.  There was a first aid kit available, but I wasn’t allowed to use the band-aids as they are “counted” before and after each visitor, and using more than one would’ve brought attention and questions.  So I took comfort in a cold wash cloth.  I thought it odd that visitors are searched so vigorously upon arrival, but no one took a second look at you when you left.

 The next morning, my husband said I should “feel lucky”, as he was doing life for serial rape and murder (hence no conjugal visits).  I wasn’t quite sure what he meant by “feel lucky” ~ surely this guy wouldn’t have killed me right there?  Then again, what did he have to lose?  Seeing such a cold attitude from BH made me realize right there that this was a sick and dangerous individual.  My devotion and thoughts of complete obedience began to wane right then and there.  I knew this was the beginning of the end of my second marriage… short as it was.

Despite my conviction, this would not be the only such experience before I found my way to the Light.  That would be years ahead!

 *** This is the first time I’ve shared this story with anyone other than my current husband.  It has been a dark, dark secret pushed way down inside of me for all these years.  No more!  Women need to be empowered and educated so that these or similar things do not happen to them!  Please do not shed a tear or feel sorry for me that I experienced this in my life, for it was part of my journey to freedom and empowerment of my own self.  Indeed, it was difficult revisiting these memories as I wrote, but I knew that someone might read this and identify and realize that you do not have to be someone’s door mat.  You are better than that, I am better than that!***

Advertisements

Revealed Chapter 1: In the Beginning ~

I remember having a good, “normal” childhood until Junior High when I met my first love.  I wasn’t even interested in boys at all until then, until “ST” started giving me all this attention.  Wow!  I was getting attention!  And from a boy!  He made me feel good; good about myself, good about us.  It only seemed natural to kiss him and to let him kiss me.  And that felt good, too.  It only made sense that during April’s Spring vacation, when I was a month shy of turning 13, that ST should ride his bike the 7+ miles to my rural home while both my parents were working and spend the day with me.  After all, we really liked each other’s company. 

 I’d like to say I was naïve and that it was all his fault, but that would be a lie.  Although I was naïve and inexperienced, and had absolutely no idea what I was doing, I was just as much at fault as ST.  Ignorance is not bliss.  When we became intimate with each other, it was a life-altering experience for me that I could’ve never foreseen.  I did not understand that it would be a defining moment in my life that would set the tone of decades to come, effecting my lifestyle, my children and possibly their children.  Like they say:  “If I only knew then what I know now.”  But, would I have changed anything?  Could I have?  And who is “they” anyway?

 I must admit that the now intensity of our relationship built quickly.  We talked on the phone before school, saw each other and “made out” as much as possible during school, and somehow made arrangements to be together sometimes after school; and I was addicted.  We were in love… at ages 13 & 14.  Is that even possible?  It sure seemed like it then, and I can remember it and still feel it like it was yesterday.  I made it to the ripe age of 13 before I became pregnant ~ surprise!  I won’t elaborate on this time of my life, because I already have covered most of it in my “Forgiven and Set Free” post.  I now have a better understanding and am able to cope with the subsequent abortion, after which my son’s father wanted nothing to do with me… another defining moment.

 The rejection that ensued left me feeling desolate, inadequate and shattered my self esteem.  In 9th grade, I may possibly have been the only student at Baker High School that kept a bottle of liquor available in my locker for daily consumption… who knows?  I drank in private and I drank to replace the feeling of emptiness that was left behind when ST turned his attentions to other girls in school.  I experienced intense jealousy that consumed me every day.  It left me miserable, and desperate to find something, or a someone, to make me feel good again like he had.  So, “someone” it was!  Or perhaps I should make that plural.  Thus, I began what would be a series of “relationships” with pretty much anyone who would look at me and show me any attention.  I didn’t really care.  Some were friends from school, some were acquaintances or friends of friends, some I picked up in local bars. 

When I turned 16, I was frequenting bars in the Baldwinsville area with a girlfriend, and meeting men.  No one ever checked ID back then.  Even the guys over the age of 18 and 21 who often took me home ~ to their place or not.  Talk about risky behavior!  It didn’t feel risky to me.  I was just getting what I needed (attention) from whatever source could be obtained.  At 16 I was with a friend in my favorite B’ville bar, we were enjoying a band that we had been following, and this guy asked me to dance.  I obliged.  He was kind.  He stayed with us the rest of the evening, then took us home to my friend’s house (I was spending the night with her).  On the way, he talked me into meeting him the next day, and he would take me for a ride and we’d just talk.  How absolutely dangerous and exciting!  I had no idea who this stranger was!  But I met him the next day anyway, and got in his car.  He drove me back to Baldwinsville, and to his apartment.  After it was all over, he confided that he was a teacher in one of the middle schools there in Baldwinsville.  I didn’t care about any of that, I’d gotten the attention I craved.  His name?  Never got it.   Next!

 From that point on, it was one selfish, irresponsible thing after another throughout the rest of high school.  I’m not sure how I managed to get through the business curriculum I was enrolled in, and be exceptional at it, but I did, even after I began using drugs at age 16 or 17.  Well, because, all my other new friends were doing it!  And it made me feel good and/or made me not feel at all.  I don’t recall having a “home life” during those tumultuous years of sex, drugs and alcohol in school ~ everything pretty much revolved around getting away from my parents and my home and having fun.  Was this fun?  I couldn’t tell anymore.

Next Chapter:  Senior Year

Forgiven and Set Free ~

I am a child of God.  I am His daughter, His princess, His brown-eyed girl and his devoted and loving child.  I’m pretty happy with this arrangement, and I’m sure so is He.  I spent a good deal of this early summer learning and getting comfortable with myself, and my God.  It took a lot of hard work, tears and revelation to be able to admit, privately and publicly, that I had an abortion when I had just turned 14 years old.  It’s not something you can just discuss over lunch with a friend, or blurt out at some perceived opportune moment.  Even now I have difficulty putting this “out there” for all to know, but the difference is now I know it serves a purpose.  If telling my experience can save just one girl/young woman/woman from choosing abortion over any other option, I will consider this sacrifice of privacy a success.

   Yes, I found myself pregnant at the age of 13, in 1974.  Surprised?  I was!  As a 13 year old in 1974, I was extremely naïve, and just plain didn’t know much.  So when a young man approached me (he was also 13) and wanted to be my boyfriend, and he gave me lots of attention, I was flattered and loved the attention.  Who wouldn’t?  We took that next step, and we weren’t careful.  As I look back I think “What was I thinking???”  Well, obviously I wasn’t.

   There are some blank spots in my memory surrounding that summer.  Somehow our parents found out, and took it from there, making the decisions and all of the arrangements to get things taken care of quietly so that he (the baby’s father) and I would be able to continue on with our lives without interruption or inconvenience… I guess.  The next thing I knew, I was being admitted to Crouse Hospital for three days, and my parents left me there alone.  I wouldn’t discover until decades later that I was never alone.  But here I was.  This was not to be your “simple” abortion, by the way, somehow months had gone by before my admittance, and I was now almost 5 months along, well into my second trimester.  So a “saline abortion” had been ordered by my OB/GYN.  Now, at my age, I had no idea what was even happening, all I cared about was if it was going to hurt.  As I stared at the 10″ needle that was about to be inserted into my uterus, my doctor and his attending nurse tried to reassure me.  I closed my eyes and gritted my teeth, thinking about being able to go home and go horseback riding… after all, it was summer vacation! 

   Somewhere in the middle of the night the contractions began and kept me awake.  I labored for the better part of 10 hours in my hospital room, by myself, as I watched the nurses going about their routine outside in the hall.  I remember thinking to myself when would this end and what would be the result?  When could I go home?  Then I remembered “three days” and knew I’d be able to leave the next day.  The nursing staff pretty much ignored me and left me to myself as I felt like my stomach was about to explode.  Why hadn’t I been allowed breakfast that morning when I woke up?  Finally, after an eternity, I had to push and my child was born in the hospital bed.  I felt the little arms and legs jerk between my legs, and I called for a nurse.  A 40-something year old woman came into the room and seemed surprised to see a baby there, but she began to wrap him up and prepared to whisk him away to who-knows-where.  I quickly asked if it was a boy or girl, and she hastily told me my son had been born alive… then they were gone.  My parents picked me up the next evening after they finished work, and they took me home as if I’d just had my tonsils out.  It was never mentioned again, by them or by me.

   Decades later, when I began having bouts of depression and uncontrolled crying, my husband and I were stumped as to why.  That is, until I began having thoughts and memories of that summer in 1974, and regrets and doubts about what I should’ve/could’ve done to change my baby’s fate.  See, now I had become a Christian woman, a woman of God, and I didn’t believe in abortion… under any circumstance.  I believe in life at conception, and under no circumstances should a person take that child’s life or it would be considered murder.  Was I really seeing myself in that new light?  Certainly I could not be considered a murderer, as I had no control over what my parents did.  And they couldn’t be murderers, they were my parents, doing only the best that they could for my benefit and future.  Certainly neither God nor I could blame them!

   Well the depression and crying continued intermittently.  I sent to Crouse Hospital for a copy of the records of that abortion, and I got a clinical 4 page assessment of what happened.  “Products of conception” he was called.  My baby boy.  This year, 2012, it hit me again ~ very hard this time.  I confided in a friend, who told me about a post-abortion Bible study group from our church that might be helpful, and she gave me a name and a phone number.  I was skeptical, but I made the call and the arrangements to meet with this “group” and commit myself to getting through this and getting better, getting results, getting to the bottom of this.  The group was to be 10 weeks long, and we met once a week.  Two incredible young, devoted and loving women from church lead the group ~ each confessing that they, too, had been there and back, and that we would get through it and come out alive and better for it.  Seriously?  Who ARE these people?  But I devoted myself to my Monday night sessions, and to the homework as well, which consisted of reading a “workbook” and answering a myriad of questions in addition to reading Bible passages that pertained.

   I learned so much from this Bible study.  I was finally able to mourn the loss of my child.  Society supports women who have lost a child due to miscarriage, or after birth, but nowhere is there recognition or support of a woman who has had an abortion ~ also the loss of a child.  And society would say, “Hey, you’ve had 38 years to get over it,” in my case, but does any mother ever truly “get over” the loss of their child?  I put it right up there with PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), and in fact, it is referred to PAS (post abortion syndrome), and it is real.  Go figure?  Finally a NAME to address what I’d been experiencing, and an avenue in which to get better!  I learned how to forgive myself, as God has forgiven me, for being complacent in going along with the plans for my son.  I did nothing to thwart his death.  I also was able to forgive all of those people involved in this:  my son’s father, my parents, his parents, even the OB/GYN.  I needed to forgive and show mercy.  Having mercy means that we no longer hope in our hearts that they’ll get what they deserve, no longer want to see them punished.   I could finally put the depression, anger, guilt and even the suicidal thoughts behind me.  I was finally beginning to feel my life come back to me and my spirits lifted.

   At the end of the 10 week study, I felt like a new person (2nd Cor 5:17) “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”  I realize that there will be times when I think about my son, who has since been named, but I know how to deal with these emotions, and on who I can rely and trust.  I am my Father’s daughter.  Those of us in the Bible study, and our study leaders had a memorial celebration at the end of the 10 weeks at the church.  It was beautiful!  There were flowers, candles, music and speeches in memoriam of our children.  At the end, we let go of helium balloons outside and watched them glide away.  Al and I also purchased and planted a beautiful red oak tree in our front yard in memory of the loss.  The oak tree will grow big and strong, as I know my son would have.  He must’ve been a strong little guy to make it through and survive as long as he did.

   And now I’ve been able to move on and put the past behind me.  I know someday I’ll be able to see him again in Heaven, and I’m looking forward to that day.  Until then, I can rest each day knowing he’s with Our Father, and that my future is set.  And I’m thanking God each day that I’ve been Forgiven and Set Free!

My little red oak tree, planted in memory of Kirk Leroy Thomas (so named by his father and having the same middle and last name as his father). We call it “Kirkwood” for short. The yellow mums were planted from the memorial, as well as the white roses that were given to me by a special Sister in Christ at the memorial. Kirkwood has survived the weather/storms better than any of our other oaks or maples, including my King Crimson maple that stands not far from the strong little oak.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4-3-2013 Update ~ Recently our church, Word of Life Assembly of God, in Baldwinsville, NY, helped facilitate a promotional video of the Forgiven and Set Free experience.  It can be found HERE on You Tube.  It breaks my heart and sets me free each time I see it, remember it, remember him (Kirk Leroy Thomas) and hear that song (about abortion).  I hope you’ll visit the link and listen in … can you tell which one is me?

God bless!