Comments for Child Abuse Story From Tom J

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Feb 20, 2009
Forgiveness for the infidelity or for something else...
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

Tom, I'm not a doctor and I'm not a marriage counsellor. I can't give you the answers you're looking for with any degree of credibility. The reason I decided to post your story is because it clearly shows how sexual child abuse can follow into adulthood and seriously affect every member of a family.

What I can tell you is that your wife is displaying behaviour and mental challenges that are consistent with child abuse and molestation. Whether or not you believe your therapist's assessment of your wife's situation is up to you. There are studies that show mental defects can be present when a child grows up with heinous abuse, defects or impediments that can continue to hinder judgment well into adulthood. This is not an excuse for your wife's infidelity, but rather a possible explanation. There is no cookie-cutter answer. In truth, each person responds differently to abuse and subsequent life challenges, depending on a host of factors.

You're not ready to forgive your wife, in all likelihood because she has not owned up to her part in the affair and you don't know if she can be trusted. But you may also still be blaming her for your daughter's molestation. This is an issue you'll need to discuss with your therapist.

Whether or not your wife is trustworthy is an issue you'll need to resolve between the two of you, with the help of couples counselling. I believe that each of you will need individual therapy for some time, especially given what happened to your daughter. You have what I'll call "fatherly" issues with regard to your daughter's molestation that you will need to deal with, just as your wife has issues as the mother of your daughter. You have additional issues with regard to your wife, and your wife has additional issues because she believes her repressed memories (a very real condition; a coping skill, actually) resulted in your daughter's molestation.

And I would be remiss if I didn't mention your 14-year-old daughter. This is a time in her life where she has great needs, especially with everything else that has gone down in her family, needs that both her mother and father must provide. If she doesn't get them met with her parents, she'll find other ways to get them met; not all of them healthy.

I do wish you, your wife and your daughters all the best, Tom. Thank you for sharing your story with my visitors and me.

A Video Reading by Darlene Barriere
Darlene Barriere
Webmaster: www.child-abuse-effects.com
Violence & Abuse Prevention Educator
Author: On My Own Terms, A Memoir

Feb 20, 2009
Can Relate
by: Linda

Tom, therapy is what your family needs now. I can relate to what your wife is going through. Incest with a family member at the age of nine, turned me into a sex addict and ruined my life. Therapy wasn't an option back in the sixties, because this was a taboo subject nobody talked about. But things are different now. There is all types of help out there for your family. Your wife must really love you.A marriage can't survive 20+ years without it.I hope you and she can work things out, so you can help your daughter as well....Good luck, Tom and hang in there.

May 26, 2009
Forgive
by: Anonymous

I am married woman now.But did the same thing to my ex, but it was not with one guy. Many! I am a shame of myself. I had a good man. But I messed up and wish I could change everything before. It was a control thing with me. I was rape and beaten by a man call my dad. If you have never been through something like that you don't understand. We try to block things out of our minds and it works some...but something will remind us and we don't know how to handle it. When that happen to your daughter...it brought the pain back. If your marriage was good before that happen to your daughter and you still love your wife...maybe its worth saving. I hope you daughter is doing well and good luck working things out. One mistake should not end a good family with so much love still there.

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this, I do try to balance the need for the submitter to be
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