Sunday, September 11, 2005

Hard to write--possibly hard to read. Your choice.

I feel like I need to put a disclamer on this.
It's very personal.
I feel very much like I need to write this, to make this event public.
Secrecy protects people who hurt children.
I am writing this for my daughter.
I didn't remember this event even happening until I was about 15 years old. I told my sister first, and then she told my dad. Eventually my mom, grandfather, and grandmother were let in on the secret. However, I don't think any of them have actually confronted him with it, nor have I.
When I was about 5 years old, my mothers youngest brother took me down in the basement of my grandmother's house, exposed himself to me, pulled off my pants and underwear, lay me on the floor, and then lay on top of me.

It was Christmas time, and he told me that Santa's elves were watching, and that I wouldn't get any Christmas presents if I told anyone.

For the rest of the visit, I wet my pants so often, that my mom threatened to put me back in diapers.

I know that far worse than this has happened to many people--probably more than half of the people who may read this. I don't feel like this event has actually effected my life in any huge way. In fact, I haven't thought about in any detail for years until tonight.

Tonight I stayed up way too late reading A Thousand Acres. Just as I finished it, around midnight, Sophie came in and asked me to come lay by her. I looked at her standing there in her nightgown, and was swept by a fear for her that has pretty much shaken me to the core.

This is what I've decided. For the sake of my sweet sweet baby girl, and every other sweet girl on this planet, I intend to out him and every other man who thinks he can do such a thing and not suffer a consequence--even if the consequence is no more than embarrassment. Writing about it on the blog, I hope will just be a starting place. I think that at the very least, I want him to know that I know, that my parents know, that his parents know. Now I sit shivering, wanting to type his name, but not being able to do it. Is is out of a sense of loyalty to my mother or her family? Sheer cowardice? I guess what I've said will have to be enough for now. This is as far as I can go I guess.

I promise you this--if anyone, ever, lays a hand on my daughter, I will have vengeance--and it will be public. If some sick sorry sack of shit thinks he can silently hurt her and no one will ever know, he will be very very wrong.

Today's best thing about being a mom:
Loving my daughter more than I have ever, will ever, or can ever love myself

Today's worst thing about being a mom:
Fear. Fear that I won't always be there to keep her safe. Fear that she will be hurt. Fear that is always always there.


Comiccharacter said...

You know.we write in these blogs and people dont usualy read them

and then i decide hey..the next button might be something to check out.and ofcourse im lead here

im sorry for your past.and besides that i do not have words because frankly my vocabulary doesint extend far enough.\

ill be a current reader for awhile

Dak-Ind said...

You brought tears to my eyes. The man who got to me was my moms third husband. He has remarried and his own son is in the same school as my oldest child. It was so hard to tell my son he couldnt be friends with that boy and not tell him why. He doesnt ever need to have that kind of darkness touch his life. No child does. But, man am i glad i have sons, daughters scare me.

Seddy said...

I am speechless. I will currently read your blog. I wish you the best of luck of being a mother...

patrice said...

I am so sorry that this happened to you and I understand what it means to be that afraid for your own children. I think your decision is very courageous and you may find some support along the way from other people who are suffering in silence along with you from the very same man. and you may stop another girl from having the same thing happen to her.

Katy said...

We've talked about this one on one so I don't feel a need to say much here except that you do what you feel in your bones is right. Sophie has a wonderful protector in you and if God forbid something like that ever happens, I'll be right there next to you.

thelyamhound said...

I'm . . . fairly speechless. I can't do much but remind you that I'm here for you, available to you as best our geographical separation can allow. Know, though, that I admire the courage that such candor requires.

amandak said...

I don't know what to say other than your courage is amazing to me. Your ability to heal and love and move forward is beautiful. I love you so much and will stand by you every step of the way, in whatever way you need. You inspire me.

NME said...

It is incredibly powerful that not only can you open yourself so much to let out such personal details but also that you try to make such a negative event have some sort of positive outcome. I really admire your strength. Sophie is a very lucky child - there is so many wonderful things that she can learn from you.

lonna said...

I am so sorry that this happened to you, and I am impressed with your strength to share it. I worked at a group for 2 years in grad school. Most of my clients were early teens who had been sexually abused by family members. I also have two family members who have been molesters (my grandmother's cousin hurt boys, and my mom's cousin married a guy who hurt girls and tried to hurt my cousin's daughter). So I have a deep and special hatred for people like that. No child deserves to have their trust of adults shattered like that on top of the physical and emotional pain associated with molestation. Sophie's going to learn how to be strong from her tough mama and that's going to help her immensely.

Stine said...

I'm so glad you posted this B. I think these things can affect someone more than anyone may think. I know they did in my case, only it was a female babysitter, and a doctor. I think that the act of typing these words gives you so much more power than the situation took away. Acknowledging and getting issues like this out into the open is huge, and you should be commended. There is too much silence in the church, too many things not discussed, too many things that fester and become much bigger than they once were. I hope there are more people that will follow your lead.

grody jo-dee said...

i hope that you feel a burden lifted and load lightened by sharing this with us. your courage will make others aware, and maybe keep another child from harm. sophie is loved and better protected now more than ever.

KATIEmagic said...

Thank you for sharing this. I can't imagine how scary it is to think of someone hurting your baby girl in any way, but especially in that way. I think Stine is right. When something like this happens it affects us in more ways that we can really grasp. So many of my trust issues and weight issues are tied into "that incedent" when I was 12. In my case it was by best friends cousin. As strange as it sounds it's an easy thing to downplay to oneself. For years and years, when I occasionally thought about it I was just thankful nothing worse happened. I felt like one of the lucky ones. I never told anyone but my husband, and I pray that my silence hasn't meant harm to someone else.

Jen said...

Wow, this is a heavy one. Thanks for your story. It is important to know these things to be able to protect children better in the future.

Kat said...

Thank you for sharing. Thank you for being brave for your daughter and all of the other silent children.

Kodi said...

I love you. You're a beautiful woman with courage, honor, determination, and compassion. I think you are a wonderful mother. Sophie is lucky to have you. I feel lucky to have you in my life