I was 10 years old when my ongoing sexual abuse at the hands of a male relative finally ended. I don’t remember how old I was when he began molesting me, only that I was too young to understand what was happening and what it was called. Or that it was criminal and demented and anything but ok.
My abuse ended not because I spoke up and told someone what was happening to me, but because my abuser was caught abusing another little girl. I so wish 6, 7, 8, or 9 years old me had been able to speak up, to put an end to the damage he was doing before he could do it to another.
I don’t recall the specific tactics my molester used to ensure I wouldn’t talk. Only that they worked for years. Had I not been asked point blank if he had touched me or hurt me I’m not sure if I ever would have disclosed the abuse of my own volition.
And here’s why.