Where were my protectors?
Why didn't they do something?
Was anyone looking out for me?
Did others know what went on?
How could this happen in my family?
How could my relatives let this happen?
And many more.
In time you'll see connections between what happened in childhood and how it has affected your adult relationships and notice how abuse continues to creep into your life. As time goes on, you'll take a stand for yourself against abuse of all kinds. You may worry that you're going overboard sometimes.
When we make changes things tend to go from one extreme to another. One day, you'll suddenly realize you're responding instead of reacting. Like saying in a firm voice , 'No, I don't like that. Stop' instead of jumping up and down yelling. Mind you, jumping up and down yelling is sometimes exactly what's called for.
Family dynamics that have affected your own deeply ingrained patterns of behaving, relating to others and how you treat yourself will slowly reveal themselves to you. You may want to disclose and confront family members at this time. Trust your own wisdom. You know what's best for you, but get support and plan how, when and what you'll say beforehand.
If a family member sexually abused you and you suspect that person is still offending against children, it is your reponsibility to report him or her. Get help preparing for this big step.
In the 'understanding' stage, you'll start to appreciate the ingenious ways in which you survived; you'll learn more about who you are, about your strengths and tender spots, likes and dislikes; you'll make stronger boundaries saying 'no' more than saying 'yes' at first; and you'll take a greater interest in looking after yourself.
Reminder: Applaud yourself for how far you've come.