Child Abuse - Stop The Violence Stop The Silence

by Stephanie
(Austin, Texas, USA)

They always say the monster comes from the street and into the home. But that's just not true. The monster comes from the home and into the street. They say that you can tell an abuser apart from everyone else. But that's not true either. They can be the most normal people in the world when they're out in public.


I was repeatedly sexually abused by a man who I was supposed to trust. Everything was okay for a time. Then, one day, just out of the blue, he exposed himself to me. I jumped a little bit because I had never seen a grown man's penis (even though I was quite used to seeing my little brother running around our home naked). I didn't tell anyone. I didn't know how to tell.

It quickly went from bad (groping, touching) to full penetration. This went on for I don't know how long when I let slip to my big sister (she's a year older then me) that "he did something to me" but I didn't go any further then that. I don't know what happened because after that, I've never seen or heard from him again. Even though he's gone, his essence is still there: I suffer from depression (it's gotten so bad that I've come very close to suicide) claustrophobia (fear of closed spaces) and overeating. It helps to write my feelings down, to let out that anger and self loathing. I told my mom when I was fourteen what had happened but she doesn't like to talk about it, even if we're alone. And I don't know how to talk about it. Writing is the only way to get my feelings out, since I'm not very open to people. I've kept my feelings in for so long.

Parents, if you suspect that there's something wrong, go to the proper authorities. Children, teens, men, women, if something is happening to you or you think something is happening to a family member or friend, speak out! I'm not saying that you have to come in with guns drawn or whatever but tell a family member, a teacher, or a friend. Stop the violence. Stop the silence. Silence kills.




Darlene Barriere: author. speaker. survivor. coachNote from Darlene: If I have not left a comment on your story, please understand that it is not personal; it's just that my hectic schedule no longer permits me to do so.

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From Victim to Victory
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How I got over the devastating effects of child abuse and moved on with my life

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