Last month I took a course to be a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator for the military and next month I will be recognized as a SARC nationally. This cause is something near and dear to me because I was sexually harassed by a family friend as a teenager and some of my family members were sexually assaulted growing up.
In the United States, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime and nearly 1 in 2 women and 1 in 5 men have experienced other forms of sexual violence at some point in their lives. Of course the statistics are not 100% accurate because many victims do not tell the police, family, or friends about the violence. Sexual violence is any sexual activity where consent is not freely given. This includes completed or attempted sex acts that are against the victim's will or involve a victim who is unable to consent. Sexual Violence can consist of physical, verbal, and/or nonverbal abuse.
After living with being sexually assaulted for more than 30yrs my Aunt Cathy finally decide to SPEAK UP about her abuse. This is her story.....
When my niece contacted me about her plans to write about sexual abuse on her blog I thought it was a great idea. I told her to make sure she mentions how important it is to tell when you are abused. She then asked me if I would tell my story. Three years ago I would have denied ever being sexual abused.
Thank God that today I am able to tell my story and not feel shamed or as if it was my fault. I lived with being sexual abused for over 30 years before I ever mentioned it to anyone. I actually had plans to take it to my grave.
When I was 12 years old I was molested and raped by my mother’s boyfriend. Yea that’s right! Someone I trusted. At first it started out with him coming into my room and stand over me while I was asleep. He would open the bathroom door when I was using the bathroom or taking a bath. He would walk up behind me and stand very close to me to the point where I could smell alcohol on his breath.
He would do these things when my mother wasn’t at home. My mom worked 2nd shift, so he would use the excuse of checking on us. His attacks began to progress even more. One night as I was lying on the chair asleep, I woke up to find him touching my vagina with one of his hand while touching himself with the other hand.
I jumped up, cursed him out and told him I was going to tell my mom. Of course, he told me the usual spill that she was not going to believe me. She would blame me, and it was entirely my fault.
I was 12 years old. I believed him and besides my mother was very strict and MEAN…. After that I would stay my distant. When he came to the house I would leave. If I could not leave I would make sure I was never in the house alone with him. For a while I was safe. A few months later I was in the house watching TV and he came over. When he came in I got up to leave. He blocked the door and would not let me out. I tried to push pass him. To make a long story short he over powered me and raped me.
That destroyed me. Not only did he take my virginity, he changed my life forever. My attitude changed. I became angry. I was mean. I began to smoke marijuana and drink to ease the pain. I felt like it was my entire fault. I couldn’t tell anyone.
The relationship with my mother took a 360-degree turn. I felt like she didn’t protect me. I blamed her because she brought him into my life. Being sexual abuse affects you in many ways. I started using guys for my pleasure. I didn’t trust anyone and I didn’t care what anyone had to say. I did exactly what I wanted to do.
For over 30 years I was on a road of self-destruction and the sad thing about it I didn’t even know it. But thank God for healing. I have forgiven my mother and I know that she did not know anything about it. I love my mother. I have even forgiven the man that raped me.
Over the years I’ve had real trust issues in every relationship I was ever in. They always ended the same way. I can honestly say that because I did not deal with the abuse in my first marriage it ended in divorce. I still have a long way to go. I know that God is going to see me through.
I do not want anyone to feel sorry for me. I walk with my head held high and I encourage everyone to tell someone if it has happened to you. I don’t care when it happened, it is never too late to tell.
Women with children…. Watch your child, if their attitude changes, if they go from sweet to a hell raiser PLEASE! PLEASE! Talk to them. Let your child know that no matter what; they can come to you about anything.
I am telling my story in hope that it helps someone and it also helps me to tell it.
A’keta I love you… Keep letting GOD use you.
As we promote awareness of Sexual Assault through this month I ask everyone to please STAND UP and TAKE ACTION! If you have been assaulted please SPEAK UP and contact someone for help by dialing 1.800.656.HOPE!
Psalm 30:2 O Lord my GOD, I cried to you for help, and you restored my health.