Win with MysmartkidJoin Mysmartkid today and stand a chance to win a LeapFrog LeapPad worth R1 999!
 
Parents speak out!The Parent24 forums are the perfect place to vent, share or ask a question.
 
Search

'I was raped at the age of 5'

 
A Parent24 reader shares her traumatic experience of being sexually abused as a child.
I was five years old when my cousin had sex with me and was 12 when I remembered this traumatic event. I blocked it out for so long that I first thought it was a dream. At first I did not tell my parents – I was so ashamed and thought that I did something terribly wrong to deserve it. I started acting out badly. My poor mother could not understand what was going on until one day I told her. She was so shocked and did not know how to handle it. We lived in a small town with no psychologist available – and even if there was one – they would not have been able to afford it. But I never blamed them. I know that through it all my mother was just as much a victim – because what is the chance of that happening in a small town like that. I think I was thirteen when someone killed my cousin – which maybe was a blessing in disguise because I don’t think I would be able to face him. But it made it difficult because I struggled with forgiveness – difficult when you cannot look the person in the face. Writing a letter to a dead person is not as easy as it sounds.

For years I struggled with my self-esteem and could not stand a man near me. I felt so sorry for myself and felt I deserved the punishment. I felt like the ugliest girl on earth. For years I could not look into a mirror. I couldn’t stand myself. And then something happened that saved me. I went on a church camp with some grade 7 kids (I was a volunteer at church) and the theme was masks and why we wear them. There was this beautiful woman that did a drama on child abuse and alcohol abuse – something broke inside me. I started crying and couldn’t stop. I felt so embarrassed but shared my story anyway. It was people I knew and was so afraid that they would judge me – they didn’t. They held me and cried with me. Some freedom came that day.

After that I just decided that I did not want to be the victim anymore. I started working with a psychologist and she gave me some amazing advice about how to go on with my life. According to her my nature is of a fighter and I created my own coping mechanism – exercise. That gave me back some dignity. I started feeling better about myself. I believe that God has a plan with everything. Even the bad stuff that happens to us.

I believe one day I will be able to help a kid whose life was shattered by this trauma. I don’t wish it on any one. But if you do go through it don’t take as long as me (25 years) before you seek help.

I believe that one day I will have a husband that loves me even though this happened to me. I will never lose Hope.

- M

If you have a story to share, email chatback@parent24.com. Writers may remain anonymous.
 
Read more on: abuse
NEXT ON PARENT24X

Keeping birthday costs low

2013-08-22 15:40

Read Parent24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
13 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 
 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.