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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Comments for Child Abuse - Stop The Violence Stop The Silence

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Apr 16, 2011
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

Thank you for sharing your story and your so-important message with my visitors and me. Your title is so appropriate. In order to stop the violence, we must first stop the silence. Whether or not you realize this, you DID stop the silence when you opened up to your sister that day. Speaking out, even briefly, resulted in the end of the abuse. I also have to say here that you have nothing to feel guilt or shame for. Nothing at all. This man took advantage of your youth and your vulnerabilities. That's what pedophiles do, Stephanie. Don't allow yourself to apply mature adult values of what you did and didn't do as a little girl. That's not fair to the child you once were. Always remember that blame and shame and guilt are squarely on the shoulders of the man who CHOSE to abuse you, because he chose to abuse you. As for your mother, something is deeply wrong. She can't talk about it, and she can't let you talk about what happened because of something within HER. This has nothing to do with you. But you can break free from that legacy. That fact that you can write is a good thing. Very cathartic. But you do need help with this. Please talk to a school counsellor and find out if there are resources out there that can help you deal with the repercussions. You didn't deserve to be sexually abused. You certainly deserve help for the fact that you were.

From Victim to Victory, a memoir
Darlene Barriere
author. speaker. survivor. coach
From Victim to Victory, a memoir

Apr 16, 2011
by: GPM

Good for you in coming forward with what has to be a very difficult revelation. You have taken a giant step in recognizing that your experience, however horrible it was, is going to help you deal with the abuse issue better, and you will also be helping others with the same issue.

I want you to know that there is a great deal of concern about your depression and thoughts of doing something harmful to yourself. Let me say this- you are a very precious part of this world, you are not damaged goods. And as for your mother, she's in denial of the abuse by not wanting to discuss it. If it will cause you no harm, tell her it would benefit both of you to seek counseling together. It might very well be your mother has issues she would rather keep secret that may be affecting her in the same way you've been affected.

Whatever you decide to do, do it for your health and welfare. You are the number one priority right now and that's very important to all of us who read or contribute to this site. Whether you know it or not, you have become a valuable asset to this site. All we want for you is happiness- so let all of the past stay in the past. You get out into this world and grab all the new life you can hold. You deserve all the blessings life has to offer- I'm betting you will get them all too.

Apr 19, 2011
Don't quit: Don't give up on yourself: Be a winner
by: maurice

STEPHANIE: I know you won't give up on yourself because you are a caring, loving, inspirational message you left with Darlene and her many visitors: Anonymous also gave you hope to live by: Live well: Laugh alot: Love much: ALWAYS BELIEVE IN YOURSELF: Look in the mirror saying positive things about that beautiful body of yours: I like this about etc etc; I love the shape of my etc: instead of I don't etc: then be gentle and kind to your body by massageing it all over with scented oils and creams: MY NEW MOTTO I will: I can: I must: Why you might ask Stephanie???? the answer being, becauise I am WORTH it: Darlene has written her encourageing, supporting, loving, affirming words to you from her heart: Cuddle and hug her concerned words into your heart: take ownership of them: take all the positive loving sentences from Anonymous Comment: no talk of suicide: self harming that body of yours: You are gifted: tallented: with loads to offer to people around you especially from those words you wrote: Hi, begin having a healthy mind in a healthy body, Stephanie get out their taking part in TEAM sports; sporting or cultural activities with like-minded peopkle your own age and gender: you'll make real frinds and make loads of aquaintances who will cheer you up when you meet: You'll be fine Stephanie: Act on Darlene's words to you in her comment: Your motto I WILL: etc.

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