Help me with believing this new story about my past

1) What I want to change from my past
I want to be able to change the way I think about being sexually abused as a child. I want to stop blaming myself and also to forgive the perpetrator

2) What is the current story
It is all my fault. I went over to him so I must have ‘asked for it’. Even though he abused me I still went to see him. I feel so ashamed and guilty over this.

3) The facts of the story
A friend of the family sexually abused me. He was an adult and I was 8 years old.

4) The story I want to tell myself about what the event means
As a child I was escaping a difficult home life where I suffered neglect and emotional abuse and was witness to my brothers being physically abused. Life at home did not feel safe. I was craving love and attention and unfortunately the person who I sought that from took advantage of my vulnerability. I am 100% not to blame and there is no need to feel any shame or guilt. The perpetrator had complete responsibility as an adult and should not have abused me. I did not ‘ask for it’ and what he did was wrong and illegal.

5) What can I keep from the event and what to let go of
I am a very strong person. I have not fallen to pieces. It has not stopped me from having healthy relationships. I have a loving caring partner, I am a busy mum looking after two little girls one of which has additional needs. I also have my own business which I love. This challenging childhood has given me strength to cope with whatever life throws at me

However, the problem I am having is that I can believe the new story rationally but I do not genuinely feel it with my emotions. I think I have buried these emotions for so long it is my default coping mechanism.

I feel like I have empathy for everyone else but myself. I’m still feeling a huge amount of shame and guilt and I still blame myself. How do I reach a stage of genuinely believing this new story?

I am also finding it impossible to forgive the abuser. Every time I think ‘What if he did what he did this to my children” could I forgive him? In reality, I feel like I would kill him if he laid a finger on them. I want to stop giving him anymore of my thoughts, time and energy.