*Note: This is one of the many private responses I have received this week based on previous posts about sexual abuse. The writer has agreed to let me share their experience here. I will be posting additional stories all this week.
While I am sickened and saddened this happens to our littlest children most of all, I may have something to add to the conversation. Another tangent of the conversation perhaps.
When I was freshly 14, (just after I was confirmed and officially allowed to date!), I started dating an almost 18 year old guy. He was a “good church guy.” In our first week of dating, we were riding around in his car. Oh, the advantages of dating an older guy. We were holding hands. As we turned the corner to cross the bridge, he pulled my hand on top of himself.
Things progressed quickly from there. Within a week, I had given my first blow job. He told me that it’s “what couples do.”
This might not be as traumatic or shocking as many other stories, and I’m grateful for that. We ended up dating for several years after those first incidents. A lot of that time, I was a blissful teenager in love. It wasn’t until I finally extricated myself from the relationship without a shred of my self-worth left that I realized how sick the relationship had been.
He was emotionally abusive. The sexual acts continued without a lot of regard to what I wanted. We were “right” to do everything we did because we weren’t actually having sex.
I’ve tried placing blame everywhere—on him, on my parents for not warning me, and most of all, on myself for letting it all go too far.
I’m not sure what the answer is. I’m not sure I would have even listened if anyone had talked to me more about healthy sexual relationships. I do know that I’ll be talking to my kids about how to respect themselves and others.
Thankfully, my story has a happy ending. It took a string of bad choices in college before I finally built myself back up to the woman I am now. I’m married to the BEST man for me. He respects all of me.
If you would like to share any experiences or thoughts publicly, you can leave a regular blog comment down below, or post on my Facebook link. If you would like to submit an anonymous story, you may do so at this link.
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