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Feb 09, 2008
WHY you want to tell him is as important as HOW
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

Staci, let's say you want to tell your boyfriend about the sexual abuse you suffered at the hands of your father, because you are having intimacy problems with your boyfriend. Telling him would be a possible explanation for those problems, and might allay his concerns that he is doing something wrong. He'll need to know right up front that he's done nothing wrong. Indeed, the approach could be offering a rationale right off the heels of one of those awkward or difficult intimate moments, perhaps in the bedroom.

If an intimacy problem IS the reason you want to tell him, the approach would be more direct by telling him that the problems you are having stem from what happened to you as a teenager. But Staci, you yourself can't be ashamed or feel guilty over what happened to you. You should first deal with any feelings you have that are along these lines. You were NOT to blame. It WASN'T your fault. YOU need to know that; HE needs to know that.

If you want to tell him because you just want him to know and there are no relationship challenges to explain away, you might use a round-about approach. The reasons behind telling him will dictate the lead-in, the opening, if you will. It might help to get a feel for the way your boyfriend might respond to your disclosure. Open a dialogue over a news item that closely resembles your childhood sexual abuse. Ask him what he thinks of the situation. Take your cues from his answers.

Although your goal is to share with him the details of what happened to you as a 15-year-old, you want to do it in a way and in a place that keeps you feeling safe. A public place is never a good place to share such personal details, and neither is one where there are any other people around. Consider the environment, your surroundings and the privacy factor: a private home, the car, or some other place. Wherever you decide to disclose, find a place where you will feel safe to open up, without worry of someone walking in on you or hearing you.

I don't recommend mixing alcohol with disclosures of this kind. Although a drink can help to release inhibitions, it can also lead to emotions that you might not be in a position to deal with if you're intoxicated.

Whatever your decision, Staci, you and your boyfriend need to understand that child abuse is NEVER the child's fault; and that no matter what you, the victim of sexual abuse did, the shame and blame lies squarely with your father. Both you and your boyfriend need to understand that you did NOTHING wrong, because you did nothing wrong.

I hope you'll let my visitors and I know what your decision was and how things went, Staci.

Darlene Barriere
Violence & Abuse Prevention Educator
Author: On My Own Terms, A Memoir

Apr 06, 2009
Been There!!
by: Anonymous

I was also sexually abused by my father from 10 to about 16 or 17. It was so long I can't remember. But I told my boyfriend after about a year of being together. It kind of slipped out, I'm an angry, hateful person b/c of what happened and I was telling him someone at work asked me why I was always so angry and he asked me why I was and I said "because my dad molested me." We have never talked about it since and he refuses to go to my families house. We have been together for 9 years now and are getting married this June. My father is still married to my mom (who doesn't know about it) and he is walking me down the aisle. I don't want him too, but how do you tell someone who you are scared of No and explain it to your mom without breaking her heart. I'm not sure how my wedding day is going to go but I can say that I have tried to find peace and haven't and pray everyday that he is taken out of my life however God chooses to do so. He almost was in September, 2 more minutes and he would have passed...but God has another plan and I am trying to lay my trust in him. I wish I would never have told my boyfriend, now fiance. It makes life so much harder. Good Luck with whatever decision you come up with.

May 05, 2009
I am shocked!!
by: Anonymous

Anonymus: I also have been sexually abused by my father (since before I can remember which was about 4 or five until I cut him out of my life which was between 12 to 14.) I did have an easier time doing that because he left the country when I was 10 but my mom did find out when I was 13 and only then I cut him out completely (the visiting stopped the year before.) I am also a believer and let me tel you- God has a different plan for your father (which your father DID NOT follow if he molested you!!!!!) but you have to cut him out of your life completely and not wait for him to die. Please please please don't let him walk you down the isle.. Your wedding is sacred and it should be your pure moment and with him there it will not feel pure. confide in your fiance and ask for his help! I am sure he doesn't want your father in your lives and would want to protect you.. You have to do it and I am sure God wants you to.

May 07, 2009
Hold your head high
by: Anonymous

My father abused my sister, who is 6 years older than me, until she was 13 or 14. He started abusing me when I was 3 or 4 and stopped when I was 13 and started having boyfriends.
For a long time, I was ashamed and afraid to tell anyone because I was afraid that they would think badly of me or reject me. My sister and I didn't even talk about it to each other until I was 19.
I don't tell everyone about it but I have told those closest to me (several of my best friends, my ex-husband, my current fiance) and all of them have been very supportive.
You didn't do anything wrong and should hold your head high that you survived this and can make a good life for yourself in spite of his actions.

As for the lady whose dad will walk her down the aisle: I watched my dad beat my mom, hold a knife to her throat because we lost his keys, abuse my sister and myself. When I got married, I told my mom that I thought of myself as a strong, independant person and wanted to walk down the aisle by myself to prove that to me and the world. I took some flack from my in-laws, but my (now ex) husband knew and supported me. Your wedding is about you and your soon to be spouse. This is your chance to do what is best for you and your future. Its slamming the door on the past. Fear is a powerful thing but once you get past it once, it gets easier and easier. This is a huge event and the perfect opportunity to stand up for your freedom from his hold.

Good luck and God Bless Both of You.

May 15, 2009
Don't look back
by: Anonymous

I was sexually abused by my father from the age of 11 to about 13/14. The guilt got so bad that I eventually told my mum when I was about 15yrs old. My mum wanted him out of the family home; I did not want this as I didn?t want to come from a broken home. So he stayed, I find it very difficult to be in the same room as him or even look at him. It was not my fault what happened and I don?t feel guilty or ashamed anymore but I'll never forgive him for destroying my childhood. He will defiantly not interrupt my adulthood, my life is my own. I also have a boyfriend of one year and he will never know what happened to me as I feel what happened to me as a child is in the past and has no place in my future. I will hopefully one day get married and my father will NOT walk me down the aisle as he lost that right the first time he abused me.

Enjoy all the good things in life focus on the happy times and don?t look back to what happened in the past as it can never be changed and don't let the past rule what you should and shouldn?t do now and tomorrow. Do what you want, we have choices.

Jun 13, 2009
i told my hubby about 13 years abuse after ten years
by: Tammy

I have been married for 8 years and have four children. i was 19 when i met my hubby. My father abused me from the time i was 7 til just before i met my husband. i didnt tell him until January this year. I am very lucky. For him all the pieces fell in place and he absolutely supported me. I was so afraid that he would hate me, particularly as we have young daughters. Its hard to escape the control an abuser has over you, i believed my dad was a great guy. Everyone thought that. I didnt know where to begin and i didnt want to hurt my father either. Now it is out, my life is better even though my parents and brother have rejected me and cut me off completely, it is easier for them to believe the lie than deal with the truth of what they allowed to happen. Good Luck.

Jun 22, 2009
Painful Flashbacks
by: Anonymous

Just stumbled across this site by accident. I am 38, was married for 13 years, separated and because we disagreed on custody.....ended up in therapy. In therapy, all of a sudden I began to have vivid flashbacks of my father.....very uncomfortable memories of him spying on me touching myself, inviting me to touch him in the bath tub, and fondling my breasts....among others.....I had been diagnosed with depression, eating disorders, bipolar, and the list goes on...I now know I am a survivor of sexual abuse, and have hope for the future in resolving my depression and anxiety. But in the meantime, as the result of my separpation, I am living in my parents home.....with my father(my abuser) and my mother(who I have never told)and my two children. I am terrified to continue therapy as I am affraid it will effect the out come of our custody issues. I have no plans to stay here once we have aggreement sorted out, but since our assets are frozen until then, I don't have much choice....I have no other family other than a brother who lives on the other side of the country. What triggered the flashbacks was telling my therapist how my ex disclosed to me that he had sexually abused two of his nieces when he was a teenager and they were under six. I don't really have much else to say but was glad to be able to write this down and vent about it for the first time in my life. : )

Jun 23, 2009
To Anonymous:
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

I'm very glad you were able to vent about what has happened in your life. I must also say something from a place of caring: if either of your children are daughters, they are at risk being in the same house as your father. I understand the position you're in, but you must understand that sex offenders never change their ways. The risk is very high that your father will offend your daughter(s) the same way he offended you. As their mother, you must protect them from such risk. If your father does sexually molest either of your children, and your husband learns of it, he could use it against you for custody. I cannot offer you answers, Anonymous. I speak up only from a place of caring.

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


Sep 22, 2009
Don't feel so alone now! *Sighs*
by: Anonymous

Wow, this site has just blown me away! I was also sexually abused by my father from the age of 4 (Thats the earliest memory so may be earlier) till I was 11. He then tried again when I was 15!
I have awful memories, which I have really struggled to deal with. I have 5 brothers and not one knows about the abuse. My mum was an alcoholic so doesn't even know that it went on in the very same bed she slept in. :( My parents split when I was 11. Thought that was a blessing until my father kidnapped me and took me to another state! He told me my mother & brothers were dead and changed my name. I then continued to be his little sex slave for the next year until the poilce found me by total fluke! He was arrested, but only for the kidnapping, as I was sworn to secrecy that our Dirty Little Secret would never be spoke of. Ive seen my mum bashed, set on fire, a gun to her head...
After he got out of jail he tried to kill me. :( Wow, life is so fricken lovely!
Anyhoo, I moved out when I was nearly 15. And never looked back! No one other than my hubby knows! Telling him was hard and although he has trouble dealing with it, he is my hugest support!
I rid my father years ago and have never looked back! My mum is now sober and happy! She asks questions and I get the feeling she really knows the truth!
My wedding day was bliss and my wonderful uncle gave me away! I never have any regret and look forward to a wonderful future! My only battle now is trying not to be too protective of my 5 year old son!
Good luck to you all. Im so very proud of each and every one of you for being a survivor! x

"Massive Characters are seared with Scars"

Jan 10, 2010
needs advice!
by: crystal

I was abused by my step father and so was my sister(4 years younger) He abused me right when him and my mother got together (when i was 6) until i was 15. I am now 21 and am having problems dealing with all of it. I was in denial for a long time. It has affected my realationship with my boyfriend tremendously! I told him about 5 months after we got together but have never spoken of it since. I am always agry with him and i think it has to do with the sexual abuse but dont know how to make him understand. I want to get some help because he dosnt deserve the anger. We have 2 beautiful girls together and he is a wonderful provider, father, and partner. I had never had a healthy realationship with a man and beleive it has to do with the whole trust issue. I need advice! Will talking about it with my boyfriend help or should i get psycological help??????

Mar 26, 2010
Abused Young
by: Hurt

I am a 30 yr.old black woman who was sexually abused by my father for almost 4 yrs off and on. I am in a reationship with a man of my dreams who loves me for me, but has no idea of the abuse I suffered at the hands of my father. We have plans to get married one day but I dont know how to tell him about my past. My father sexually abused me and took my innocence away from me.I hate him for that. I have so many mental and emotional issues that have over powered my adult life. I came out and told my family about the abuse I recieved from age 12 to 16 when I was 22 yrs.old. My mom a recovering alcoholic was so disappointed in me for not telling her. I was ashamed like it was my fault. But now I know I was a victim of child abuse and it wasnt my fault, but my fathers.I have not spoken to my father in over 5 yrs. after I came out about the abuse.I have heard he is still living in SanFrancisco well and alive at 53 yrs.old and I sometimes wonder does he think about me and the damage hes done to my life. I will tell my future husband one day I just dont know when that day will be..

Apr 16, 2010
Should I tell him
by: Confused

I was abused by my grandfather, we lived in the same building, him and his wife (not my grandmother) on the first floor, and my family on the second. I can't remember when the abuse started, but we moved into that house when I was 5, so I'm assuming then. He made me touch him, and he touched me. I remember my second grade teacher noticing that I needed help, he really hurt me that one time, and she asked if my parents had me see a doctor, I was really afraid, I said yes, and the issue never came up again. He did this to me until I was about 14, which was when he died. Three years later, I find out he also did it to my sisters (1 and 5 years younger). I told my mom, she never did anything, which makes me so afraid to tell my boyfriend, I'm 22 right now, he's my first, and I am having intimacy problems, I do not believe in premarital sex, so that's not an issue yet. But I tremble when he touches me, I go into a state of panic, and he doesn't understand why. It took me a while to let him hold my hand, and he is taking it slow, but I'm really nervous about telling him.

May 25, 2010
Not alone
by: Anonymous

I'm 33 and didn't start remembering until my father died two years ago. Rejection by my best friend made me bottom out and face the ensuing depression. I'm still struggling letting my best friend go. It's easier to hold onto than face what my father did to me. I remember diaper changes and my bedroom before we moved. I was 5. Nothing, as of yet, after that. I'm pretty sure my mom knew. Part of my memories is of her screaming at me in my dark bedroom. She was sexually abused as a child as well. I suffered emotional abuse for the rest of my time at home from both of them. My mother would start the fight over something stupid until my father screamed in my face until I broke. If he didn't get angry enough, she'd lie until he was.

I want to tell my best friend why I've been acting so crazy. For fifteen years, he's the only person who's ever believed in me and that's why his rejection hurts so bad. But I'm scared to open up so I told him never to speak to me again tonight. I feel safe behind the walls. Guess I've been there too long. So, I don't know if you tell them or not. Not sure why I even posted. It's 3am and I'm having a hard time, I guess. Good luck.

Jun 15, 2010
Should I tell before entering into commited relationship
by: Anonymous

I was abused by my father between the ages of 9 and 13. He walked me down the aisle at my first wedding. There were no intimacy problems in the marriage. I told ex about 2 years into marriage. Strange thing is my father is still married to my mum and we all act like some big happy family. Recently I have felt unable to converse with my father or be around him (have always felt like this but pretended for so many years).

A guy's interested in dating me but not sure whether to tell him about the abuse now or when the relationship is more established. Personally I believe that if we considered marriage, he should know. My dilemma is my family may cut me off if he refuses to visit my family. How is he supposed to react to my father at family events?

Jun 30, 2010
Always remember that we are not alone, we can help ourselves and there will be someone out there who will love us for who we are:
by: Heather Barnhart (Heath)

Part 1
About Me:
My name is Heather. I?m 20 years old and like many of you I was abused as a child. To say that last sentence out loud and without crying took years of progress and building up my self-image.

My abuser was my older brother (by 5 years,). My hell started from when I was 8 till I was raped by him at the age of 15. I suffer from memory lost and still can?t remember major events in my life. My whole family knows what happened to me and I am still forced to interact with him. My mother denies the events through the use of god and demands that I forgive him, while my father blames me for letting it happen.


We are not alone: I used to be a raging monster on the inside but now I am just an angry girl who is saddened by her loss of childhood. It was through searching out professional help (Not everyone who sees a therapist is crazy. It?s ok to ask for help sometimes) and speaking with others like me, that I calmed down and saw that I was not alone and that my life could be worst off.


Remembering this fact helped:
No matter how bad it was for you, there is someone else, somewhere else that has it worst and could use your help.


Jun 30, 2010
Part 2
by: Heather Barnhart (Heath)

We can help ourselves: The more we talk about what has happened to us the more we can be freed from the shameful feelings that lay inside our minds. What happened to us was not our fault. They were the adults and they knew what they were doing was wrong. We are beautiful/handsome and should be proud of ourselves for coming this far and pushing forward in our lives.

Sex is not a punishment. Sex is not dirty but another way of showing affection for someone.

Deep down everyone has the possibly to be a good person. You are not a monster; you are just a hurt child on the inside that has a need for closure even if there is none to be given.



Someone is out there waiting to love you: Let?s face it; we are afraid of being hurt, abandoned, and possibly falling into an abused relationship. It was in our own childhoods that someone who was supposed to care for us betrayed us. The idea of possibly having that happen to us again is fracking scary.


1st-You must learn to love yourself before you can love someone else. Once this happens you will feel happier and more open to trusting other people. I know it sounds scary to trust someone. Built in order to have a health relationship it must be built on trust.

Learn to let go of some of the anger. You have every right to be mad, I understand but until you get your angry under control people will feel uneasy around you and see you as unapproachable. Think about it, would you, yourself want to be around or in a relationship with the person who is are screaming, breaking object and throwing themselves into rants all the time.
Realize that there more to your live then the abuse; don?t let them have this control over you. The abuse was a tragic piece of your life but it was only a part. You have the rest of your life to live.

There is someone out there who will love you for who you are on the inside. They will love your mind, your body, and your odd little quirks.

Dec 03, 2010
him knowing your worth, will determine his worth to you
by: Anonymous

I too am a survivor of incest. At the age of 6 because my mother (according to the state of VA)"kidnapped" by "crossing state lines"to get away from my father who was only abusing her at the. my father was a such a narcissist that he divorced my mother because he "knew she would come crawling back". anyway because of idiotic va laws and my father's money, my father was given custody of me and that is when my abuse began. my earliest memories of my abuse are not vivid. but the nights i lay in pain with a cold towel because i was sore, and how i was afraid to use the restroom because my father said my urine was too acidic because i had "drank too much orange juice" (i didnt realize this was true until i was in my 20's) unfortunately are well embedded in my memory. i was told my mother did not love me. and was repeatedly shamed. I remember being told my vagina was my "shame shame" what a horrid self perception to instill in a child. When in actuality i had a loving mother who i was deprived of knowing from the age of 6-13 because my father would isolate me from her. because my abuse was impacting my ability to love, my ability to trust, my mental heal and my fear of having romantic relationships i eventually felt forced to confronted my father and have been doing better since. dont get me wrong the confrontation was not easy...but all the hard work was worth it. anyway my brother found out and acted like he was a victim. acting angry at first but then not doing anything, and later being ashamed of me. my did not know how to cope and told everyone, i didnt like this but how do you cope with the fact your child was sexually abused....what is the proper way to react to that? people just dont know how to handle these things.i understood my mother did her best given the circumstance and she put me in therapy. i appreciate her for trying......Well all I can say ladies that what we have gone through is not who we are but is a part of who we are...i have recently told someone whom i care about. and would like to have a relationship out of frustration. he could not understand why i was sensitive about certain things. but i have come to the conclusion that if someone cares for me no matter who they are. they will be supportive, understanding, not stigmatize you and understand. It takes a special cookie to go through what we have gone through and remain standing tall as we do. I say we give ourselves a pat on the back. I am so proud of you all for being courageous enough to seek resolutions to this problem. and if that special someone is worth it. he will be there for you and be supportive I love you all :)

Dec 20, 2010
abused by my father
by: Anonymous

hi
i have been abused by my faher from 10 to 20. Now i'm 28 and have a boyfriend of 5 years. we want to get married and leave the country but i am afraid to tell my father( who is extremely possesive of me) that i am still with him and that i am leaving. every time i had a boyfriend or tried to have one he forbidded me to be with them.. he hates my soon to be husband and he thinks we separated.. i am afraid to tell him because i don't want my boyfriend to know what my father did to me.. my mother doesn't know and i know that this will devastate her cause she loves my father.. i even had a form of cancer but i am ok now and i really want to go and live my life..how do i tell him? how do i confront him? i dont want my boyfriend or his familly to know, not even my mom.. please give me an advice.. if he sais something cause i believe he will, just to separate me from my boyfriend should i deny?

Mar 18, 2011
My story
by: Anonymous

I was just 3 years old when it happened my oldest half brother was kicked out of his home so he lived with us i was 2 at the time my parents were in an agruement on my 3rd birthday and they were arguing about my half brother. I went downstairs to watch some t.v. when he came down... when i saw his eyes i knew somthing was wrong this wasn't like my half brother he told me to follow him so i did.. he told me he got me a cute teddy bear outfit and started undressin me i was shaken his breath smelt like cigars and vodka he pinned me to his bed and he started raping me it didnt stop till i was 14 im 16 now and i am in conusling for it eh ruined my entire life and he dosen't care we moved away but i nvr can get away from the breath of cigars and vodka out of my mind its burnt in there just like the emotional and physical scars from me cutting myself and the flashbacks are the worst when i told my boyfriend this he said he was here for me whenever i needed him he gave me a promise ring that one day we would marry i love him to death.

May 06, 2011
My Story
by: N,

I am a 19 year old girl, and have been sexually abused by a relative from the age of 5 or 6, since i can remember. This is the first time i am sharing what has happened to me.he still lives with us,and so i am still suffering.

The BIG problem with me is that his son and me want to get married, we've known eachother forever and been together for 3years. But, i simply don't want to hear or see his dad, im waiting for him to die, after which i want to tell my husband to be.sounds a bit stupid, but i feel so stuck.i want to tell him now but don't see how this will be beneficial to anyone.

Im getting awful flashbacks,and he haunts me in my nightmares doing things much worse and vigorously. He's EXTREMELY possessive of me, the things he has said and done are shocking and can't mention because the list is endless! I am a university student and have tons of work, i try to get on with building my life, but i simply can't! i want to do something which will relieve this pain.but there are no options for me, all i can do is simply get on with my work. i get suicidal thoughts so often, since the age of about 7. He's hurt my mum dad and brother, i even lie in bed for hours planning to kill him! i won't,, by writing all of this i feel i need psychiatric help! but i am managing at the moment.things have been much worse.

Oh yeah,the main problem i am worried about right now.. my boyfriend, has had many many problems in his life.and i think he seems to think that i whinge and complain about how stressed out i am for no reason. but then i can't blame him if i don't tell him can i. Oooh it's so complicated. I love him,and am completely devoted to him, but i am scared his father may seperate us. and because his father has hurt my family, they will also not allow our marriage.
:(
Similar to Romeo and Juliet! families hate eachother.
ok now i am going to continue with my uni work!

TONNES OF RESPECT goes out to those who have suffered abuse and have been brave to expose the wrong doings of their abusers.
We have lost our childhood, but i vow to not let this happen to my children, i won't be 'over the top' protective, but ensure they are safe, safe to have an innocent childhood that everyone deserves.
xx

Jun 01, 2011
Just another thought
by: Anonymous

If he is the right man and trust and he loves you, then you can tell him.

I was abused by my father and his friends until I was 17.
Now at 36, My boyfriend is very supportive and says it's not my fault. I didn't do those things. They were done to me. Now if I could just believe him completely.
I am insecure, I cause fights trying to push him away, and then panic when he gets upset with me. I know he loves me. But I can't believe it is true. I miss him terribly when he is away from me, or not talking. I need him to love me. I don't know how to be normal but forever the wh**e dad made me.

Jun 22, 2011
Sexually Abused too
by: Anonymous

I am a 30 year old woman and I too was sexually abused by my father when I was 12.

I told my mother a few weeks after it stopped and she believed me, but stayed with him! The struggles I have is that I too still love him. I had to continue living under the same roof for years and years until I grew up.

I do catch up with my parents weekly, and I love my mum so much, I see her as an angel, but not choosing me over him has hurt me a great deal. He is a great guy, and really stuffed up, if I'm having a good day, we can have a great conversation, if I'm thinking about the abuse I can't stand to be in the same room or look at him. It is very confusing, and I have terrible anxiety as a result. I even want to hug him hello, but I pull the rest of my body away from him as we hug so it's only our shoulders and arms that touch.

I go into rages of screaming and crying from various things which are not that bad, but it is my reaction. My husband puts up with it but gets affected by my behaviour too.

I decided not to have my father walk me down the aisle because he's a great guy, my biological father, but stopped being my "dad." And in no way do I belong to him and did he have the position of giving me away, I gave myself away and it felt good.

Years of couselling and anti depressants only do so much, there is no closure with this sort of thing, so I guess realising we are not alone is the best thing we can say to ourselves.

I am wanting to find out if there is anyone out there who has an almost exact story as me?

Jul 18, 2011
How good it feels to not be alone
by: Anonymous

I am 15 years old and have had my father molest me. It started when I was about 4 years old and stopped when I was 9 which is when my dad died of a heart attack.
Although, you might think I'm pretty much a child, I still think of these things constantly and feel way older then I am. Since I was a kid I had been very independant and always felt that I had to take in everything myself. I realize how wrong this is, but by habit, I still do it. I think it's because of what happened when I was a kid that made me uncomfortable with trusting other people or relying on them in any way. Speaking of which, absolutely no one knows that this has happened to me, not even my mom! Deep inside, I feel like i'm lying to her in some way, but at the same time I feel like i'm just protecting her from a lot of hurt. Plus, I feel it's too late.
My mother loved my dad very much and he was a marine who was respected. I honestly don't know how she'd react if I told her, she probably wouldn't believe me! I'm scared to be rejected or labeled as a lier, which is why I havn't told any one especially my mom (what if she decided to throw me out into the streets?). And it's not like I trust her much anymore, i mean she hasn't exactly been there for me as I was left to take care of my younger brother while she was busy with college, but at the same time I'm happy that she wants to make something of her life.
Up untill now, I decided that all I could do was hold it in and never speak of it to anyone for as long as I live, but after reading the stories on here and all the wonderful advice, I've realized what a bad idea that would be.
I currently don't have a boyfriend and I don't feel I trust men enough to start dating much less tell them of my experiences. (My dad wasn't the only one who molested me, I also had my best friends older brother, and a neibor's eldest son who almost went all the way if it wasn't for my dad walking in (surprisingly)). But I will definately take the advice here into account and if I ever find someone who I trust and who loves me, they will be the first I tell and I hope they will still accept me despite my past.
Untill then, I'm afraid I am going to have to live with my insucurities untill I am capable of living on my own. I cannot risk being thrown out of my home before getting a proper education and a job.
I do hope I grow as strong and brave as many of you here and I also hope that when you tell your special someone that it will all go well. :)

Jul 27, 2011
Be strong and speak the truth!!!
by: Anonymous

I have just readall these testimonials and it is an amzing thingto realise I am not alone. I was abused by my father from before I could talk until after I left home. It was worse when I was little. He didn't rape me but there was a lot of pianful touching that left me very sore. Later on it got more voyeuristic. He used to come into my room at night and pleasure himself over me, often I was only pretending to be asleep, and was very scared. It took me a long time to accept that this was sex abuse. I thought it was only abuse if you got raped. I was too scared to tell anyone. It was not until I had a son, and when he was 5 my dad started to come after him that i decided enough was enough and I confronted him and told the rest of my family. It was the hardest, bravest thing I have ever done. things got worse for a while straight after. I had terrible flashbacks, it all seemed more real once everyone knew. My mum and sister really freaked out. It was hard for them to believe and assimilate it all. Now I feel much better. I feel I can start my life again, without carrying around this dirty secret any more. I feel I can trust myself better. I feel brave and strong. Just like so many people on this website, it has been a big issue to tell my boyfriend. First of all I really want to say that I think it is really important that you have some support set up before you tell anyone...someone to talk to, because other people's reactions are so hard to deal with. I was so scared to tell my boyfriend. I just did it last night in a letter. I don't know what will happen, but I feel much better for having told the truth. I totally agree that if he can't be supportive and love me for who I am i am better off without him!!
I just want to say that all these stories I just read have touched my heart. You are all amazing, brave people. You all are so deserving of LOVE. Love that heals and sets us free. Be strong, we are all connected.

Aug 06, 2011
I feel horrible
by: Rachel

I would just like to say: Be strong. Don't let what happened to you as a child make your life a disaster. Please trust your peers, whether that is your boyfriend/husband, or someone from school. They can help you. Not every 40 year old man is a sex offender. My father is a loving man, and has been my whole life.

Trust is the basis for a healthy relationship. Your boyfriend/husband should want to know that you have been sexually abused, and if he doesn't, he isn't worth your time. If he knows what happened to you as a child, he will protect you and always be there for you. I want you yo know this. Go meet new people. You will be surprised at how many people can pick you up and help you through life.

-Good luck, and God bless.
Rachel

Sep 11, 2011
Can't believe this world..
by: Anonymous

This website is sickening. I wish I was the only one who ever experienced this abuse, but quite obviously it's frightenly common... To those who were able to expose their abuser for what they really are, you have no idea how truly brave you are. I look up to you all so much...

Sep 12, 2011
Struggling to cope
by: Anonymous

My father abused me when I was 14 - 15. I recall the fear of being left alone with him. Many times I would just sit there alone and debate my options for leaving this world. I had a very stange childhood. I grew up with my dad working and traveling with the church. It wasn't until later in life that I realized that I grew up in a cult-like environment. I attributed my father's behavior to being "possessed". The abuse stopped after we left the so-called church. But, I have always felt uncomfortable around him. Many things took place my during my childhood that have scarred me for life. After being married to my first husband for 10 years, I finally broke down and told him what had happened. He loved my dad very much and was very close with him. I did seek counseling. However, it was too painful to continue. My husband and I divorced and I never spoke about it again. Last year my mother passed away and all of the feelings I had kept hidden are back. I always felt that I needed to protect my mom from what had happened to me. Now that she is gone, I am unsure what to do. In some ways, I have protected my dad, also. I have always been an extremely strong person (or so I thought). I figured it would be easier to just keep it to myself and deal with it rather than having to talk about it. I am extremely close to my dad's family. I do not have doubts that they would believe me. I just don't want to deal with all of the emotions. That being said, I have remarried and my marriage is suffering. My 2nd husband knows nothing about what happened to me. I thought that I could keep it hidden and have a normal life. However, there is nothing normal about it. We have a huge intimacy problem and he wants to seek counseling. I am afraid to go. I know that this stuff will come out and my life will be forever changed. My dad and I have this unspoken thing between us. He is constantly asking me if I am upset with him and if I love him. He seems sorry about what happened. But, I find myself not caring about how he feels. I wish he had been the one who died and not my mom. I am in crisis and feel that I am slipping into a dark place.

Sep 12, 2011
Re> struggling to cope
by: Anonymous

I just know exactly how you are feeling. \it is so hard to deal with the emotions and other people's reacctions when you speak up about the truth.I am in the middle of this, it has turned my life upsidedown. But I encourage youto tell your husband the truth. If he loves you he will support and help you through these dark places. It is better to open the door on this dark room. your life will change for the better. You will be proud and live your truth. It is a hard process, but it is worth it in the end. Don't live in the dark, you are a survivor!! Be strong and be gentle on yourself. I wish you allthe best things in life ....xxxx

Oct 10, 2011
struggling
by: Anonymous

I also am struggling in trying to decide whether to tell a new boyfriend about my past. I had told my ex but at times it felt as though it had placed a rift between us and he has even blamed his knowledge of my history as a reason for his inability to find me sexually attractive. This REALLY hurt - it was almost as though he took the one thing that I had trusted him with and used it against me. He has told me I dumped this info on him and then expected him to fix me. After 20 years of marriage, very rarely did we speak of it and honestly I felt as though I had handled myself well. But this recent divorce has sent me into a tailspin- The betrayal of my husband cheating and the pain of his rejection and leaving brought back feelings of hurt, shame and sadness that had been buried for so long. my hurt is so deep and I know I deserve happiness and love but it seems so very far away. My new guy seems very loving but I'm afraid to let him see this darker side and I know at times he thinks my sadness is because of the ex but it goes so much deeper than that. I just dont want to dump this again and then be rejected.

Oct 27, 2011
to all the brave ladies (and guys) MY STORY
by: wolfpup

Wow...reading everyone's comments I am shocked at how many there are, but more than that inspired by everyone's bravery and resilience. I was sexually abused as a "tween" by my mother's boyfriend whom she later married. When I told her she did not believe me. He convinced her that I was confused about what had happened. This really hurt me because I was not "confused" I realized what was happening was wrong, and wanted to tell her so she knew what kind of man she was involved with. Before that I felt guilty about it and kept silent. Years later I found out he had abused my younger brother as well. This hurt so much because I never said anything to him, trying to keep him safe. I should have learned from this not to keep the silence, but I still feel embarrassed and ashamed. I don't like to tell people because I worry I will be seen as "attention-seeking" and some people STILL do not believe me. What would I have to gain from lying about this? Now that I am an adult I see how the abuse has affected my relationships and ability to trust. I don't have a boyfriend and I don't know if I would be able to tell him if I did. I don't want to be that scared little girl anymore but inside, I still am. I really want to find a loving partner to open up to, someone to connect with emotionally and also have great sex with hopefully everyday. How can I do that when I am constantly questioning and judging myself? I feel like I will never be able to have a fulfilling emotional/sexual relationship because of what happened to me when I was a developing young lady. Thank you everyone for posting and to anyone who read this, for hearing me out.

Mar 16, 2012
wow i am not alone
by: Anonymous

I was also a sexually abused victim of my father from when i was 6 until i was 14. i thought it did not affect me until i reflect on my past realtionships with my boyfriends. i am now 25 and i am in a relationship with my boyfriend and he says i act indifferent. he is a really good man and ii kow that i must deal with this issue in order to be happy. my parents are still together and i thought my dad would treat her better but he doesn't. i really want to tell her because were best friends and i really want to both of us to be happy. i don't know why a man would do this to his own children. But i am going to confront this issue with my father. I thought if i let it go it would go away but i realized i never overcame my fear: confronting him. Ladies we have to do this there are so many women dying in silence because of this we have value as well> I have got to a point thgat i don't care hwo he reacts to it he knew it was wrong when he did it. I lived a crazy life because i chose to avoid this. Stealing, Robbing , Prostitution, you name i did it and don't even care. He still even thinks he has the right to tell me what to do. I want better and i that's it both for me and my mother. Ladies you are strong and give yourselve a pat on the back you can prevail....... if you want it that bad

Apr 19, 2012
Help Me Please
by: Anonymous

I also was abused by my dad im 16 and this has happened since i was 8 years old. Its so hard on me and i want to move on but i cant i want to tell my bf so bad but im so scared he'll go after my dad or tell someone. I have a little sister and i cant put her threw that.

Jul 20, 2012
Its hard but kind of a relief
by: Anonymous 1993

I was abused by my biological father from the age of 8-15 yrs old when he raped me. It still feels surreal to talk about now and im 19. I told my mum 4 months after he raped me. Honestly i felt good for telling someone, even though i dont think she quite believed me at first. I have not seen my father since my sisters wedding last year. I hope to never see him again until court. I know this is going to be a milestone and to still yet tell my boyfriend of 3yrs about what my father has done to me all those yrs. I am planning on telling him tommorow. I AM SERIOUSLY BRICKING IT! I dont know how he is going to take it. I know its fo the best and cant let my father take my future away from me aswell as my past that is why the police have been informed and it will be over once and for all hopefully.....To all of the people with stories on here, you have given me that little confidence boost to tell my boyfriend. For that i thankyou. You are all so strong, even if you dont feel it right no you ALL are 110%. If you haven't talked to someone about it then please do! even if it is a councellor. Its something

xxxx

Feb 16, 2013
leona
by: leona

girls, i m crying right now, for all of us, and for me, i m 34, burying for all my life all feelings of sadness, depresion, agression and all kinds of problems
my boyfriend died 6 months ago, i told him once in anger that i was abused, he was upset about i told him, couldnt cope with it, but it was not good time, as we had a lot of problems anyway,
i wont tell my future boyfriend, if i will have one, becouse i dont feel like someone can be with me.. also will confront my father in future, i cut him of my life couple of months ago, he knows why, he didnt try to contact me..
how can this fathers look in our eyes, trusting eyes, we are strong and amazing, sending hugs to everyone with this horible experience,
close the door to past, open to future, please

Dec 04, 2013
The right one for you will react in the perfect way.
by: Anonymous

All my love goes out to everyone of you and the many others out there have suffererd at the hands of a cowardly, selfish human being that has used them for their own sick gratification.

Im 32 and a victim of sexual abuse. A huge part if my recovery was telling those people close to me. My own abuse occurred from a very early age about 3 until I was 9. My whole family (6 of us) was abused by my step father. My brave brave sister 8 years older than me told our father and mother and social services. My mother unfortunately had also suffered abuse by her father and couldn't deal with anybody knowing so she contrived to keep him out of prison by keeping me and my brother quiet (as we were younger than 16). At the time my 2 older sisters were over the age of 16 and for some reason they (my mother and step father) managed to manipulate the whole situation to their favour. She is still with him now. He moved out of the family home for a few months but then moved back in. I lived in that house with them for another 9 years. My sisters managed to get out and live with our dad. By the time I was 20 I had a mental breakdown after taking drugs and sleeping around. I cut my stepfather out if my life and still saw my mother until about a year ago. My brave sister who got the strength to tell the authorities also again got the strength to go to the police and we are now in proceedings over 20 years on to procecute my step father for his crimes and my mother for perverting the course of justice.

I was happy to carry on my life without going to the police and not upsetting our family. But my sister doing it has been the best thing. I have gained so much self respect and honour from knowing that what this man did was a crime and he is going to be punished for it.

I've told everyone of my boyfriends. That is 5 so far. Not all of them took it well. But I had not dealt with what had happened to me. I manged to learn I was not alone and that I was a victim not a bad person myself. I also managed to forgive my mother as I understand the great strength and support it takes to come out of this situation which she just doesn't have.

ALWAYS tell people close to you. If they are the right person for you it will feel great and they will help you to move on and cope with all the stress, anxiety, shame, and hurt. Love is the biggest healer for pain. You are loved. Those who truly love you will help and make your life better so don't worry about telling them anything. If they don't help you then do the best thing for yourself and get them out of your life. If they can't help you because of yourself and your problems coping with the past then get professional help. There is lots out there all very wonderful and supportive. The police and associated companies have been wonderful. I definitely recommend getting justice no matter who in your family it upsets!!! You are the most important thing!!!

Good luck to all xx

Dec 04, 2013
Be prepared
by: Anonymous

It's easy especially if its early on in your recovery to be completely overwhelmed by your own fears and emotions to ignore the fact you are telling a traumatic experience to someone who loves you and may never have had to deal with anything like this in their lives.

There is lots if literature and helpful advice for partners of those that have been sexually abused. It's very hard to get across the emotions and pain you go through to someone who can never understand fully what your talking about. Get some information together to help you explain and to help your loved one cope with the trauma of the story you are telling.

No matter of your experience you need to be on the road to recovery to have a healthy relationship with yourself and others around you. Make sure you get support and help if you feel the need for it and let your loved one know there is help available for them too.

Love to you all. There is hope in the future. It takes a very long time but its there.

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