God loves me. God is for me. Sexual abuse grieves God.
The above statements are very simplistic. But after acknowledging that I was was a victim of childhood sexual abuse, stating and really believing that God loves me and is “for” me has been the way I’ve held on –to life…to truth.
“If The Lord had not been my help my soul would have lived in the land of silence.” – Psalm 94:17 ESV
At fifty years of age I officially began this journey. Earlier in my life I noticed there were some cracks in my world, even though I used all of my energies to create a “perfect” world. Those cracks allowed some light and truth to shine through. It’s been a slow awakening for me. Without God’s leading and His nudging me along ….I wouldn’t be here today. Two years have passed as I’ve journaled, prayed, read and wept. Nothing is easy about this path. The best part about this process is the closeness I’ve felt with God. He believes me. He knows exactly what happened. God is for truth even when the truth isn’t pretty. God never intended for my dad to use children, his children, for sexual pleasure.
My husband and children support me and believe me. Disclosing my childhood sexual abuse to them actually helped them to make sense of many things that had been confusing. My extended family has shut me out. The only ones that I disclosed to were my parents and brother, but shortly thereafter they rallied the troops, so to speak, and my parents became the “victims” and according to them, I was the “false accuser”. My parents have continued to deny any wrong doing and have chosen to paint me in a bad light by attacking my character. It is painful. Aunts, uncles, cousins have cut me out, acting as if I am the villain for disclosing the abuse to my parents. My aunt said that she’s known my dad for over fifty years and he would NEVER do such a thing as I had accused.
I have come to realize that when I hear voices saying:
“It’s better to just pretend.”
“Let bygones be bygones.”
“Was it really THAT bad?”
These statements do not ring true of God’s voice. God is for truth, light, and freedom. He says to hate evil and to cling to what is good. Who IS for deception, darkness and chains?
For those who have not experienced or read about the aftereffects of childhood sexual abuse, it may be difficult to understand how all of the sudden a victim “recalls” hers/his abuse later in life. It is possible, but for me the memories were not new, only latent. The thing is…when I was a child I knew nothing of sexual abuse. Even if I had of known—a child will trust the adults in his/her life to tell them the truth. Therefore, things that are very abnormal can seem normal to the child…it’s all that she/he knows. So, my memories were filed in my head as something “different” than abuse. I had to use my adult eyes and experiences to see the memories for what they were. They were not just a bad idea, or a mistake but were planned opportunities for my dad to achieve sexual gratification. I remembered “helping” dad, being “taught” by dad, or “playing” with dad. It was only after allowing myself to speak those memories aloud that I could begin to see them for what they truly were…abuse.
I am still walking this healing path. Fear sets in at times. God tells me to not be afraid…but to keep on speaking.
“For my father and my mother have forsaken me but The Lord will take me in.” -Psalm 27:10 ESV
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The Last Battle Blog aims to provide meaningful tools and information about the issue of sexual violation. We offer a way to express yourself, as you engage in your own personal awareness and share your strengths with others. Our goal is to cover a variety of topics, stories, ideas, and to create a blog that is beneficial and honoring to those who read it. Last Battle’s contributing authors help make this happen.