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Need Advice...please Help

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Hello. I'm new here. I'm not a survivor but I recently found out that my husband inappropriately touched my daughter when she was 10 (she is now 13). He is her stepfather. I just found out 6 mos ago. I am so lost, hurt, confused, and plain SCARED. My husband is not an awful person. This is totally out of character for him and I can't believe this happened. It's baffling. When my daughter told me about this, I confronted my husband. He admitted it. I heard both sides of the story and they both match up and my daughter has told me he never ever told her not to tell, threatened her or anything. Here is the story: Apparently, when my mom died, my husband and daughter drove down to Houston to be with me (I flew down earlier in teh week). While driving, my husband reached into my daughters pants adn touched her "down there". It was all external (still yuck) nothing invasive, and it was just the one time. He told me it was like he was sleeping and woke up and realized what he was doing and was like, "OH God...what am I doing??" and immediately stopped. My daughter also said he seemed "out of it". He has not made excuses, he has owned up to it. He told his family, etc. He wants to understand why he did this. His family said some things happened to him, but my husband says that is no excuse. Here is the dilemma. When I found out, we tried to decide as a family what to do. Obviously I was devastated. I kicked him out of the house for couple of days until I could think of what to do. We decided to let my daughter decide what to do. In hindsight, not a good idea but at the time my thinking was that I didn't want to traumatize her any further with telling, having to go through all that crap. She has been out of control though. She is into the "goth" look and has been "cutting" and doing things she should not be doing. She's very mean, and verbally abusive to me and physically to her little brother who is 6. She has always had problems, i.e., ADD, ODD, etc so I wasn't sure if the "incident" affected her or not. Now I can see that it did. Please don't judge me for this, I have never dealt with anythng like this. When it happens to someone else it's easy to sit back and say, "OH..I'd kick him to the curb or whatever," but when it happens in your family it's a different story. Fast forward to now. My daughter 2 weeks ago got angry and stayed out all night refused to come home because she wanted to hang with her boyfriend (he's 15) and friends. She has been blackmailing us with the incident with her stepdad when she doesn't get her way. That night, she tried marijuana, and I found out she has been smoking cigarettes for 2 years! I decided I had to tell her real father the truth and that it needs to come out because a) she is out of control and b) it is very obviously affecting her. I have not told her counselor yet (we have been going to counseling for a few mos now for her behavior issues). We have an appt next week. I am SO scared. Even though my husband did something awful I still love him. I don't know what will happen. I don't want a divorce, but I feel like that is what I should do. We have a lot of debt right now though and splitting isn't something we can just up adn do. We would have to sell our house and some other stuff too. I'm scared of him being on the Perv list (he's not a perv or pedophile, this is an isolated incident) and while my daughter is my; #1 priority, he's obviously got some issues too. I think how would i react if he were an alcoholic? I know it's different but it's not. YOu know? I'm scared of the cops being at my house, at him being arrested, etc. I have no idea what to expect. I am preparing for the worst. I have teh card of a divorce lawyer, talked to my daughters father abotu taking her while my husband and I prepare to split, etc. Is it horrible and wrong that I don't want a divorce? But can we really get past soemthing like this? I am so confused. Input please! I knwo this is all over the place and I'll answer any other questions you have. Thanks.

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(((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((justmom))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))sending you gentle hugs

firstly i want to say welcome to AS. It is hard to reach about about abuse issues, and you obviously car3e very much for your daughter...that shows in the fact that you have come here looking for support and guidance.

i hope you will stay with us, This is a safe place, and you are always free to express yourself here.

I hear what your saying about being lost, hurt, confused and afraid...they qar3e all normal things to be feeling right now...this is a terrifying, confusing issues to be faced with...but you onbiously love your dughter..and that love for her will help you through this.

Hun...this might be hard for you to hear...but i am gonna say it;

"this is so out of character for him, i cant belive it happened"

sadly, most rapists and child abusers seem totally normal, safe, trustworthy, good people. They are very good at hiding the there capabilities for cruelty to children from both the outside world, and to very close family and friends.

You cant look at sombode and tell wherther they are a sex offender.

"he never told her not to tell, threatened her or anything"

she was 10 years old, and he was a fully grown man...she was trapped in a vehicle with him. He didnt need to threaten her, she was probably scared or confused enough by it. him not threatening her doesnt make his actions any lesser....I was threatened a lot during my abuse...but i was not threatened everytime, not being threatened doesnt mean a child does not feel threat. she was 10 years old.

"

It was just a one time thing"

One time is one time too much. It doesnt matter how many times it happeneed, the truth of the matter is, he sexually abused her.

"It was like he was sleeping......my daughter also said he seemed out of it"

that can be common...for the abuser to change, become like a different person while they are beinbg abusive...but the only way he could have done this thati can think of andf have not been in control would be if he had been having somthing called a complex partial seizure...and i think that is HIGHLY un-likely, becuse if he suffered these, it would be pretty obvous to you.

Perhaps somthing has happened to him in the past, and part of his mind was in-conconcously re-living it...but although that might make him go into a trance like state...it would not be a trance...he would still ber in control of his actions.

"his family said somthing happened to him, my husband said thats no excuse"

there is no excuse for child abuse. Beinbg abused yourslf does not give you an excuse, or make it more understandable for you to abuse another child. Child abuse is never acceptable, and never excusable.

Your husband recognises this...that is a positive...hge does seem to want to get help for this..i definatly think its positive that he told his family, and that he wants help....hiowever, he didnt tell anybody until yourt daugher opened up first.

i actuallty quite like the goth look! dont dress hat wqay myself,m but i thinks its quite funky...certainly dont see it as being an out of contol way to dress.

cutting...i self injure....I do it becsue i have pain inside me that i acnt express, pain that consumes me..becuse i feel so horrible about myself, abd because somthimes i feel so numb that cutting is the only ay I have to re-conect with my body and with my envoronment, it is not somthing i do to be out of control..cutting for me is about trying to get back in control, tryong to keep sane and balanced.

She sounds like she is carrying around a lot of rage....'she is very mean and verbally abusive toward me, and physically abusive towards her brother who is 6

it must not be easly for her to to be carrying around so much rage all the time...she is only a child herself..and although she is no angel...neither is she the devil...she is a confused child who needs surrport, guildance, and more love than you though it was possible to give.

behind ll her anger and harsh attitiude their is a confused, lonely littel girl..but that little girl is locked away, its gonna take a lot of work and patience to get coax that little girl out of hiding.

your daughter staying out all night with her boyfriend may be a cry for help, it may be masked depression, it may be stored up nger and resentment co9ming to the surface, or it may be normal teenage rebellion....what ever the cause of it, what is required is firm, consistant love nd support, and firm bounbdries with consequences. Not harsh consequnces..just consistent ones...she is only a littel girl, she needs consistency and she needs boundreis to make her feel safe and secure.

'she is blackmailing you with the incident"

can you explain this further hunni, waht do you mean blackmailing you. if what hse is doing is threatening to speak out..then hun, its her right to speak out about it, her right to tell who ever she chooses. She was abused, her body was voilated...and she was 10 yers old, it was not her fault, she should not have to be silent over it.

if hse is saying things like 'i will tell so and so what he did unless you buy me a new pair of trainers, let me stay out etc, then that is not acceptable....she should not be using her abuse as a way to gain attention or get ehat she wants...however, if she is doning this it is becuse hse is hurt and ciondused, and needs help in dealing with it...it may have only happened once, but one incident of abuse cn affect us out entire lives.

if she is threatnening you like i think sher is, then you need to not sucumb to those threats, you dont want to teach her that abuse is somthing she can use to gain power over you...but at the same time, you need to keep in mind that using uit as a threaty could be her only was of feeling like she has control over her past, overt her memoroes of that day...be gentle with her when yout dealing with htese threats.

'she tried marajuanna, and had beensmoking for two years"

this could be telliing you that what happened deeply affected her...started smoking only a year after the incident.

on the other hand..perhaps its just ap eeer pressure thing and unrelated...either way, it is again somthing to be firm and consistant with her about...she may feel very grown up and like she should not ber told what to do...but really shes just a littel kid, and dhe needs you yo be firm with her over this.

I hear what your saying about being scared to tell your councellor,,,,((((((((((((justmom)))))))))) it is scary...but it is important you both discuss this at her next appoinement. You can do it hun...for the love of you daugheer i know you can.

"I am scared of him being on the Perv list(hes not a perv or a paedophile, this is an isolated incident"

hunni...she was 10 years old, and he molested her. It may be a one off incident, but it only takes one time. it may be painful for you to belive...but he sexually abused your daugher, he put his hands doen her pants and fondled her vagina. That is abuse. That makes him a paedophile. its not an easy thing to seee i know...but its the truth...this is what your child is having to live with...knowing she was abused, I understand you love him and you dont want this for sombody you love..but, he is ther one that choose to carry out a peadophilic act....he is the one thwt caused this.

sorry, i misunderstood what you meant abuout if he were an alcaholioc...could ya expalin wah ya mean the hunni???

its not horrible tht you dont want a divorce....you are still in a lot of shock over eaht happened....To you , the man in the car with your daugher on tyhat awful dday is a comlelty different man to the man you know and love. You need to take this in, time to assimilate all of this, and time to allow your mind to integrate thise two men..teh one you love, and the one who harmed your child, into one person.

Of course divorce is always your choice, and i dont want to pushyou into it...but waht i would say is that, I i were your daughter, i would not feel very safe, happy, belived, loved, or supported if i was being forced to live with my abusers. remeber, she is only a littel girl, she is relying on you to stand up for her and protect her.

Justmom.....you obvously love your daugher.....that love comes through so strongly in your post...I think its wonderful that your supporrting her with councelling, nd that your willing to help your daugher try to over come this.

waht i do wonder though is...how much are you helping yourself? Dealing with abuse issues is painful...especilly when your stuck in the middle of it, and yes, abuse can tear families apart...hunni, i can feel the heartbreak in your post....you should not have to be alone in this...its too hard tocope with alone. I am glad you found us, and please know you will always be able to come her for support...but hun, perhaps therapy would be benificial to you...councelling sepetate from your daugher...that would proeveide you a safe place to vent and to express ecerything without fer of hurting abybody.

Keep posting hun...i think you were incredibly brave to be able to be so open in your intro post. You and your daugher can get through this...just keep reaxching out.

take care hun

xxx sonnet xxx

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:ditto: :ditto: :agree2: :agree2: with determined1!!! Edited by theresak

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Sonnet,

Love ya, but I did not see love for her daughter anywhere in that post.

Love for her husband, love for herself, love for her appearance and ego, but not for her daughter anywhere. She does nothing but bad mouth her daughter, complain about her daughters problems, and worry about her own and the pedaphiles neck. And this is a group for survivors and those who support them or need help dealing w/ issues conserning afteraffects of their abuse, not so a negligent, selfish mother can burden the survivors with HER issues in not doing whats right!

Why didnt she report this immediatly to the cops in support of her daughter, instead of protecting and worrying about him?

There is no 1 time and there is no not to bad. And what about, he only touch her vagina, but still yuck? What the hell is that, "yuck"? I'd say her 13 yr old feels more than,"yuck".

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hey determined.....love ya too hunny ((((((determined)))))

yeah, i guess your right...i think...well i think i was kinda projecting feelings i wanted her to feel into the post.

i want her daugher to be love

i want her to be protected

i8 want her to be priorotised

i want her daughert to be the most important peron in the world to her

I want her to do anything for her

It sadens me thaty a child is out there alone and suffering. that littel girl needs to be surrounded in safty and love and this is breaking my heart.

justmom....please...do the right thing for your child.

determined.....i understand your anger...i work with children too, and many of them have been abused too, and it destroys me, every single time. but no matter how hard it gets, i will always be there for those kids ,a nd so everything in my power to protect them from further harm.

This little girls story breaks my heart. i am sorry if that didnt come axross in my previous post.

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Sonnet...thank you for your kind words and understanding that *I* am also going through this. The comment about the alcholism was meant to come across that alcoholism is a sickness, and so is this. Would I leave him over alcoholism? I don't know. Obviously, this is different, I know. I am just trying to wrap my brain around it. It's hard. I say he is not a pedophile because he doesn't look at kids OR young girls. Hell..I am 6 years OLDER than he is, so it's not like he like'em young. He is disgusted by that himself and doesn't know why t his happened. He wanted to kill himself. He's very, very depressed but supports me bringing this into the open. That said, none of this makes him a saint but I am proud that he is not full of sh*t. Oh..and my daughter's ADD/ODD was diagnosed before I even married my husband, so the incident is NOT what caused that. Her behavior and self-injury has a lot to do with it though.

Determined1. OK..think what you want to think. You do not know what kind of parent I am after only one post. Everything you said...I have said about other people in this situation. I get it. I sicken you?? HOW? I only just found out about this recently myself. You sound very defensive. I do not need that now. What I came here for was support. While I do not expect to be coddled, I also do not expect verbal abuse from you or anyone else. And for the record, I am an adult (grown up) and a responsible mother. That's why I am here. If I wanted to I could sweep this under the rug. I choose not to. Maybe I did not make the right decision when I first found out, but I am trying to do the right thing now. IF you you have nothing but Sh*T to spew at me, then please do not post to me again. AGAIN...if you'd get off your high horse and re-read my post, I am looking into "worse case scenarios", i.e. I have been looking into divorce lawyers, looking into selling our home, etc, and looking at condos that are on the market. I KNOW that odds are, this is NOT something I can live with/expect my baby to live with, but I have to do this in a timeframe that we are all comfortable with (my daughter, son and self).

That said, I probably will not post here anymore.

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JustMom

I hope that you will continue to work through your problems here in the secondary survivors forum. I believe there are many people there that will welcome you and help you work through what you want to do.

I don't think you're a bad mom. I think you're struggling and doing the best you can in incredibly difficult circumtances. I know a mother who's son abused her daughter and has gone through some similar types of problems to yourself.

I think you will find support here. Try posting your intro etc in the secondary survivors forum...and I think you will get some help. If you don't, I'm sorry about that.

teazle

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Welcome JustMom, I am sure it was difficult to share this even in an online forum. Good for you for asking for advice though. I do hope you will take the advice of those of us who have been there and look out for the best interest of your daughter above all else.

I did have to edit some replies out of this thread. Please be reminded that while honesty is important here, attacking other members is not allowed and is against the After Silence code of conduct. Constructive advice is encouraged.

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I will not apologize for my earlier post though I will apologize for becoming enraged. But I ask youknow, saying everything you posted....... Have you called the cops yet?

Somehow I doubt it, protect her like you protect yourself.

To other members, please explain how she is a secondary survivor.

She is at this point in time a secondary offender. Let her post AFTER she does whats right.

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JustMom...

This is just my opinion here...If this were happening in my house, my husband would be gone. I know it is easy to say but that's why this is your problem. You are an adult and at times will need to make hard decisions. This is your daughter's step-father. She needs to come first. Asking her what she things was probably not in her best interest. She was 13 and do you really think she has the knowledge to make these desicions? You need to be the best parent you can be for your daughter and son. This could be an isolated incident but it still happened and it will affect her for the rest of her life.

If a situation ever presented itself for this to happen again, would the thought ever cross your mind? Is he capabable of doing it again? Yes, he did it once. Would you worry about him touching your grand-children?

I do wish you the best. Being a parent doesn't mean making only the easy dicisions. I have 5 children but I am prepared to put each one of them first. I hope I have not offended you in anyway. I would strongly encourage you to read some of the survivors stories. There are varying degrees of abuse here, but it is still abuse. Please take care of yourself and your family.

The reality is you are living the worst case scenario.

Determined1: Children should be protected more than you would protect yourself.

Edited by Aqua

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Aqua, you are so right, and to all of my friends please accept my apology, we all have triggers guess this is mine.

Determined1: Children should be protected more than you would protect yourself.

BLESSINGS!

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(((determined1))) I think you are right about this being a trigger for you. JustMom is reaching out and that is a start (however late it might be). She will make the right choice. I hope you can find peace with this whole thing.

JustMom...I hope you can find peace too. Now is the time to start healing for the entire family.

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welcome to AS just mom

I do believe you belong here and I hope that you continue to post in the secondary survivors forum. It is obvious that you care for your daughter and are trying to do the best for her. You searched for a site like this and talked of something that must have been extremely hard for you. You did not close you eyes to it as the wife of my abuser did but have looked for advice and support to help your whole family through this.

I wish you all the best and hope you find the support you need here

karen

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JustMom, I am posting my reply from the Welcome forum here so that you can see it.

I am sorry you are in the situation that you currently are in. While I recognize how difficult and awful this must be for you, I would encourage to think about the implications of it on your daughter. Yes, you just recently found out about what happened to you, but why is that? Because she only recently told you. That means she has lived in silence with this pain for three years. For that, you have to be gentle with her. The fact she even told you at all while you are still married to her step-father, her abuser, is amazing.

I think it's safe to say she is still reacting to what happened. Because even "a little touching" leaves lingering scars. My first episode of sexual violence occured when I was 14. There was no penetration, only fondling, and it traumatized me, especially since it was at the hands of a man in his late 30's. Dismissing it as "yuck" and nothing more is invalidating, both of the act that occured and of what your daughter went through. The marijuana, cutting and verbal abuse are very likely her way of "acting out" to deal with what she has had to go through.

I do not believe you are a bad person, or a secondary offender. There are certainly characteristics in all of our respective partners and significant others we wish didn't exist. That being said, I have to disagree with Wolfie--good people aren't the ones that only rape one woman or molest one child. Good people never do it at all! Good people go through life without ever sexually violating anyone. Maybe up until that incident your husband had been a good man, husband and loving father--but all it takes is a single acting thread to pull apart the tapestry of one's life. In that moment, your husband, not your daughter, changed everything. Simply because they seemed okay to be around each other privately means nothing--my most recent offender is a co-worker. I have to work around him for eight hours just about every other day and sometimes that means the two of us alone in a back room with nobody else around. Those times are the worst, but otherwise, it's still grueling. I hate doing it--but nobody from the outside can tell because during those times, I wear a really damn good mask. I have to. I refuse to give him the satisfaction of seeing me fall apart, and I can't. The job is too good to leave.

I understand you don't want to leave your husband, but that weight never should have been put on your daughter's shoulders. She is 13-years-old, traumatized, and probably blaming herself for everything. You cannot possibly put her into a position to make that decision. Because if she decides that he needs to leave, she's responsible for breaking up the family. Yet if she lets him stay, she continues to fester resentment and hatred. You say that this is not a good time to be splitting up due to financial reasons, but depending on where you live, you are eligible for programs that will help you during this time period. And that should come secondary to doing what is best for your daughter.

Finally, this has to be brought up with the therapist. Leaving this out and expecting treatment results is like going to a doctor complaining of a multitude of symptoms that indicate cancer and neglecting to mention you once had a tumor removed. It undermines the efficacy of the therapist and prolongs the pain while delaying the healing. Additionally, because you have not shared this with the family therapist, this is further entrenching the idea of, "It's not okay to talk about this" in her mind, which is probably why she uses it to extort want she wants from you. The wall of silence has made this an acceptable mechanism in her mind.

Please understand that I am not attacking you. But I am trying to hopefully help you understand why several members came across so strongly, and help you to see one person's perspective of what could be the right thing to do. I'm not you, I don't know you and I am not in your life--but my words come from the heart of someone who has a familairity with the wounds of victimization, and people in places of authority who should have done the right thing and choose not to.

Edited by TabloidScully

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Hi,

I'm deeply sorry for what your daughter has gone through. As a survivor I have heard tons of heartbreaking stories about non-offending parents doing nothing or if doing anything siding with the perpetrator/molestor.

I agree with determined 1, I don't understand how you are a secondary survivor. You should legally report this crime. Your child, no matter her age, is the one that deserves your loyalty. protection, love and support. A child sex abuser is a child sexual abuse and no child is safe, not even your daughter from being re-offended upon. I have nothing else to say.

Kate

Edited by Katia60

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Guest dreaminofangels

(((((((((((((((((((((((((((((justmom)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

my daughters father hurt her too. it hits you like a train, doesn't it? I know the pain, guilt, confusion, you feel. pm me if you ever just need a friend.

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hi justmom

welcome to the site

my name is emily im 16 and i was abusedby a long timefirend....i cans ee how hardthis is for you cuz ionly just told my parents about....nearly 6 years of constant abuse and 2 more of occasional abuse...andi know how hard itis for you togo through all of this

i have two things to tell you

1) remember that your daughter is hurt and confused by all of this..she was 10, and that is confuzing at anyage, just remember to show her your uncondtional love

2) have you considered bring here to see if she would like to talk. meet people whohave been through similar things. i know beinghere has been more helpful then anything on earth so yo might consider that

wait i have a third

3) i know how it may feel like youa re being ganged up on, but everyone jsut wants to help..and yes you are going through this jsut as much as your daughter..but you daughter is the primary concern..make sure she knows you love her..nomatter how much she acts out...

and feel free to message me anytime you want...id love to try to help you understand what your daughter maybe feeling cuz i can relate

stay strong and loving

prayers for you and your daughter and your whole family

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Hello and welcome to AS. I hope you find what you are looking for here. Cyber hugs to you.

Atlantis

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Hi there,

I am a survivor in very similar circumstances to your daughter. I too was touched in the car in nearly exactly the same way.

I told my mother this when I was younger and it happened again. I was very scared of my father and thought that I was at complete fault. My mother sided with my father again and again and "silence" was around the topic.

When my sisters had children, I had to say something to them, because I did not want him touching or molesting other children. I have since found out he did this to three other children I know of. He too cannot remember the incidents.

Your post could have been written by my mother. It was really hard to read. I know that my mother did nothing for me, never was there for me or protected me, and I am much older now, a grown woman, and no longer see her because of this. I cannot live with lies and silence. She tries to make contact, and I have recently threatened them with court action. My father was the abuser. The incidences effect me daily and also my marriage and my own children.

What has happened to me, and also your daughter, is devestating. It effects your whole life. Your family and your loved ones act different towards you. I have had my whole family destroyed by the number of isolated incidents. There is no excuse.

Do you love your daughter and want to support her? How does she know that her step father will not do this again - can you reasonably say it will not? Does she have to live in the same house? Does she have to wonder each night whether he will come into her room? Is it always in the back of her mind? What about next time when they travel in the car. Is the money and possessions worth your daughters sanity?

I was scared each night and each day - I refused to travel with him or be with him alone. When I was, I was scared and traumatised that it would happen again. I too considers harming myself as a solution.

Please consider your daugther and any other relatives or children in his presense. One incident is enough.

Whitedove

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Whitedove,

I relate totally, You have my love, but you like me have at least been strong enough to divorce your abusers and have taken steps to protect your own babies. Thats all we can do.

Your sister in love,

Determined

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I am so lost, hurt, confused, and plain SCARED.

:hug:

"My husband is not an awful person. This is totally out of character for him and I can't believe this happened. It's baffling."

It usually is... baffeling I mean...

"When my daughter told me about this, I confronted my husband. He admitted it. I heard both sides of the story and they both match up and my daughter has told me he never ever told her not to tell, threatened her or anything."

Just because he didn't do that did not mean that she did not still feel intimidated and scared like hell. When I read this sentence I realize it sounds judgemental, but I can assure you that it is not the intention behind the sentence. Fact remains, it is not necessary to be threatened for what he did to be completely wrong. He was her stepfather and chances are she probably trusted him very much. He broke that position of trust.

"Here is the story: Apparently, when my mom died, my husband and daughter drove down to Houston to be with me (I flew down earlier in teh week). While driving, my husband reached into my daughters pants adn touched her "down there". It was all external (still yuck) nothing invasive, and it was just the one time."

"Just the one time" is one time too many I'm afraid. That probably already did a great deal of damage.

"He told me it was like he was sleeping and woke up and realized what he was doing and was like, "OH God...what am I doing??" and immediately stopped. My daughter also said he seemed "out of it". He has not made excuses, he has owned up to it. He told his family, etc. He wants to understand why he did this."

May I ask when he told his family this? Only after she told you, right? Why did he not come to you and tell you from the very beginning? I have to admit that I find his conduct suspicious.

"His family said some things happened to him, but my husband says that is no excuse."

At least in that one your husband is right...

"When I found out, we tried to decide as a family what to do. Obviously I was devastated. I kicked him out of the house for couple of days until I could think of what to do. We decided to let my daughter decide what to do. In hindsight, not a good idea but at the time my thinking was that I didn't want to traumatize her any further with telling, having to go through all that crap. She has been out of control though."

Letting your daughter keep some semblence of control was a wonderful thing to do - by letting her decide. However, she is still thirteen years old. All that responsibility must scare the heck out of her. In all fairness, I think that her reaction is telling you that she wants you to remove him from your lives. It's easier doing it that way than to come out and say "Okay, I don't want daddy to be in our home any more". It's just a possibility.

"She is into the "goth" look and has been "cutting" and doing things she should not be doing."

Well, firstly, it is debatable whether there is anything wrong with being into the true gothic lifestyle. Personally it is not for me. Yet I wonder if you - and she - understand what true goths are... As far as the cutting goes - the inverted commas make it sound like you think it not a reality. This may of course just be my interpretation. I have cut. I still have about 200 scars on my legs. And I'm honest when I say that that was a direct result of conflict with my own mother. My abuser was also a close family member, so I can relate to your daughter's pain and - sorry to put this bluntly - probably her feelings that you betrayed her.

"She's very mean, and verbally abusive to me and physically to her little brother who is 6."

Naturally you cannot allow that. Her little brother also has the right to exist in a loving, peaceful environment, just like she does.

"She has always had problems, i.e., ADD, ODD, etc so I wasn't sure if the "incident" affected her or not. Now I can see that it did. Please don't judge me for this, I have never dealt with anythng like this."

Once again the inverted commas thing... This is real. It was an incident. It wasn't something she made up and it isn't something that is just going to go away from her mind... You have never dealt with anything like this and I have sympathy for that. Please just keep in mind that you are an adult woman. She is a child. Don't judge her for acting out and dealing with this in the way that she feels she needs to.

"When it happens to someone else it's easy to sit back and say, "OH..I'd kick him to the curb or whatever," but when it happens in your family it's a different story."

I realize that it is easy to judge a situation and the people in that situation when you are not a part of it. However, I'm pretty sure that - knowing how something like that changes your entire life and entire being - I wouldn't forgive the man who did that to my (one-day) child, even if there were mitigating circumstances. I realize your love for him doesn't stop, but you are not subject to the whims of your heart. Your child's best interest must be the first priority - as you yourself have stated.

"Fast forward to now. My daughter 2 weeks ago got angry and stayed out all night refused to come home because she wanted to hang with her boyfriend (he's 15) and friends. She has been blackmailing us with the incident with her stepdad when she doesn't get her way."

I don't think what she is doing is right, but I don't blame her. I can imagine that it would give her some feeling of control - something your husband took away the day that he stuck his hand down the front of her pants.

"That night, she tried marijuana, and I found out she has been smoking cigarettes for 2 years!"

Again, that doesn't surprise me...

I decided I had to tell her real father the truth and that it needs to come out because a) she is out of control and b) it is very obviously affecting her.

Actually I think that is a fantastic idea. You are obviously not as objective in this situation as is ideal. In fact, I'm quite sure if this was someone outside your family who you didn't have any particular loyalty to, you would be much angrier and have much less sympathy for him. You are trying to balance her interests, your husband's interests and your own. Hopefully her father can represent her interests and her interests only - because she needs that.

Even though my husband did something awful I still love him. I don't know what will happen. I don't want a divorce, but I feel like that is what I should do.

In my personal opinion? Probably.

We have a lot of debt right now though and splitting isn't something we can just up adn do. We would have to sell our house and some other stuff too.

Quite honestly, your daughter's emotional well-being means more. However, if that were to happen, please just remember not to throw it in front of her head. She probably feels guilty enough already, without having to think that you losing your house and other stuff was her fault. Because it is not. It is your husband's fault...

I'm scared of him being on the Perv list (he's not a perv or pedophile, this is an isolated incident)

I know that this is not what you want to hear, but he did something wrong. Terribly wrong. He should face the full consequences of his actions. And if that is to be added to a predators list - well then I praise your country's law enforcement and justice system and rejoice.

he's obviously got some issues too.

That is obvious. The point is that it is not your responsibility to deal with his issues...

I think how would i react if he were an alcoholic? I know it's different but it's not. YOu know?

No, I don't. I don't know. I don't feel any anger towards him in your post. Where is the anger. Where is the indignation that he did damage to the beloved child who you gave birth to and probably love more than life? For the fact that he did damage which might take years to heal - and never ever goes away? Trust me, I know what I'm talking about when I say that struggeling through the issues sexual abuse leaves one with is one hell of a tough road.

I'm scared of the cops being at my house, at him being arrested, etc. I have no idea what to expect. I am preparing for the worst. I have teh card of a divorce lawyer, talked to my daughters father abotu taking her while my husband and I prepare to split, etc. Is it horrible and wrong that I don't want a divorce? But can we really get past soemthing like this? I am so confused. Input please! I knwo this is all over the place and I'll answer any other questions you have. Thanks.

Is a divorce really the worst? Isn't what happened the worst? It's a question, not judgement. I hope that your daughter's father is able to take her for the time being, although being moved away might still increase her sense of shame, etc. There is really no real right thing - and your husband is the one who caused that, no matter what you do to try and make it right, it will probably never be alright.

Do I think you can get past something like this? The short answer? No.

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Justmom,

I'm sorry, I'll never (by the grace of god) know how the 'other foot must feel". I have prayed for your child to heal and for you to find courage to defend her since the morning i attacked you.

Selene,

It is comforting to know that there is a "tribe' of us feeling the same pain, and that we can draw strengh from each other. You were able to calmy say how i felt w/out all of my venom and rage. We must work together to end these horrors from continueing and that must include educating mothers who ultimately protect or abandon our baby sisters.

You are both loved.

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Thanks determined.

You have raised a good point with divorcing your abusers. There is information on how to do this and ideas in the Courage to Heal Book on the section about families. I have divorced my whole family including my mother due to their severe lack of support and care for me as a child and as an adult. The constant yelling, blaming me and accusations just got to me in the end, and made me consider it was just not worth it to keep in contact with my father, the mother that supported him and the sisters who sat in silence and did not support.

When they started attacking my husband, that was it. I could see who was caring for me, and it certainly was not my own mother, who told me in no uncertain terms that she would support my father 100% regardless of how many children had been effected by traumatised incidents.

Hope this helps others out there.

Whitedove

Edited by whitedove

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Unfortunately I did not have time to reply to both posts yesterday, but I am going to reply to the second one now...

Sonnet...thank you for your kind words and understanding that *I* am also going through this. The comment about the alcholism was meant to come across that alcoholism is a sickness, and so is this. Would I leave him over alcoholism? I don't know. Obviously, this is different, I know. I am just trying to wrap my brain around it. It's hard.

This cannot be an easy time for you. I think that all of us realize that on some level. :hug: :hug:

Hmm, maybe abusing others is an illness. Honestly, I think the people who do it are just sick. Period... Although I do realize that this is not what you want to hear. If he was an alcoholic... Okay, I can understand part of your reasoning. I just can't help but wonder though... If he had hit her while drunk (let's work on the alcoholic scenario for a moment) and left bruises all over her. Let's say her eye was swollen and she was blue all over... Would you leave him then? Because I want you to imagine something if your answer to that question was yes. I want you to imagine your daughter with a cut accross her face, a bleeding lip and bruised all over and standing there in front of you asking you to take care of her. Because that is not how her body looks - but that is how her soul looks at this very moment. The scars are just as real, even though they are not physical. And she IS begging you to take care of her. Her actions are screaming it loud and clear - but you aren't speaking the same language and you don't understand her cries for help. Not because you are a bad mother, but because your own role in the situation is obscuring your judgement.

I say he is not a pedophile because he doesn't look at kids OR young girls. Hell..I am 6 years OLDER than he is, so it's not like he like'em young. He is disgusted by that himself and doesn't know why t his happened. He wanted to kill himself. He's very, very depressed but supports me bringing this into the open. That said, none of this makes him a saint but I am proud that he is not full of sh*t. Oh..and my daughter's ADD/ODD was diagnosed before I even married my husband, so the incident is NOT what caused that. Her behavior and self-injury has a lot to do with it though.

Honestly, you cannot be sure of that... Many sexual predators choose women who they see as vaunerable for some reason. Just because he is with you, it doesn't mean that he doesn't still look at kids or young girls, as you put it.

Even if he is doing this because of some real illness - it is not your responsibility to take care of him or feel sorry for him.

Again, many sexual predators, although not all of them (some just say that they love kids and that having what I most definately consider to be inappropriate relations with them is a natural extention of that love) are seemingly very remorseful. And then they go out and do it again.

And even if he didn't go out and do it again - even if he never, ever looked at a young child again - would that really matter? The damage is done. I'm not an advocate for revenge, but I am an advocate for justice. He did something wrong. He should carry the consequences of his actions - and this may sound vicious, but if he decides to kill himself that is his choice. Although I'm not sure he really means it - it may just all be a ploy to gain your sympathy - which he doesn't deserve - from you, or from us to be perfectly blunt.

And he is full of sh*t. He caused incredible damage to your family - which may take years to heal from, if it ever happens. He betrayed your daughter's trust - and he also betrayed yours. You trusted him with your daughter. You trusted him to look after her and love her - and what he did is most certainly not love. And, if you think about it - he also cheated on you. He went outside the confines of your marriage and performed a sexual act with someone who was not you! That in itself, without the added weight of it being your daughter, a close relative of yours, who is a minor, who was still little bit more than a toddler and who did not consent and who was not even ABLE to consent... He is full of sh*t.

Determined1. OK..think what you want to think. You do not know what kind of parent I am after only one post. Everything you said...I have said about other people in this situation. I get it. I sicken you?? HOW? I only just found out about this recently myself. You sound very defensive. I do not need that now. What I came here for was support. While I do not expect to be coddled, I also do not expect verbal abuse from you or anyone else. And for the record, I am an adult (grown up) and a responsible mother. That's why I am here. If I wanted to I could sweep this under the rug. I choose not to. Maybe I did not make the right decision when I first found out, but I am trying to do the right thing now. IF you you have nothing but Sh*T to spew at me, then please do not post to me again. AGAIN...if you'd get off your high horse and re-read my post, I am looking into "worse case scenarios", i.e. I have been looking into divorce lawyers, looking into selling our home, etc, and looking at condos that are on the market. I KNOW that odds are, this is NOT something I can live with/expect my baby to live with, but I have to do this in a timeframe that we are all comfortable with (my daughter, son and self).

That said, I probably will not post here anymore.

I understand that you felt hurt by what Determined said... I can also understand how Determined feels because while I was reading your original post there were many times when I was livid with anger. However, I believe that anger should only be felt when it could be used productively - and in this situation I do not think that anything productive can come from it. ((((((((((Determined)))))))))))))) and (((((((((((((((justmom))))))))))))))))

You say that you have said the same things Determined said about other people in this situation - now keep in mind that, according to your original post you are not a survivor - add to the fact that Determined does not find herself in the same situation you do and that she is a survivor full of her own issues and anger and then reads about someone who is going through something which she knows how much damage it does - a minor who she feels is not being protected like she should be... Perhaps you could look at it this way - Determined, who is a stranger to your daughter, cares enough about her to be absolutely livid at what is happening to her. Now, please, I am NOT saying that you do not care about your daughter. It's just, none of us are perfect. Doesn't it comfort you to know that, one day when you may not be there for her anymore (let's say something should happen to you today or tomorrow and you died) there will be people in this world who will truly care for your child? People who will work to protect her from all the evils of this world - such as what your husband did - the day when you are not there to fight for her rights and her sanity anymore.

You are going through a difficult time and you need support. We will try our best to give it to you. But you should also remember that we are here because WE need support. We are a community of survivors - who appreciate the secondaries in our midst. Reading through your posts have been incredibly difficult because each of us puts ourselves in HER shoes. A few of us can put ourselves in your shoes, but the number is far less. We do not always know how it feels for you. But some of the things you say hurt us because that may correspond to our own situations. Many survivors here have parents who were not willing to do anything for them. Now, once again, I'm not saying that you are not trying to do everything you can for your daughter. What I am saying is that there are still some raw wounds here. With all due respect, there is no trigger warning on your post to my knowledge - and this is certainly very triggering.

I hope that you can continue to come here and continue to feel free enough to post. Just please remember that, just as you do not need certain things the rest of us (for you are included in this us) also don't need expressions like "if you have nothing do do but spew sh*t at me" or "if you get off your high horse".

And I am very, very thankful that you are doing the responsible thing and bringing this out into the open instead of sweeping it under the rug.

I KNOW that odds are, this is NOT something I can live with/expect my baby to live with

I am also so glad that you have come to this particular realization...

Best of luck to you.

I am thinking of you and your daughter.

A note to Determined... I noticed your latest reply to my post... I am very glad that the "rage and venom" as you put it seems to have left you. :hug: :hug: :hug: This will enable us all to do more - and rage destroys you from the inside. You are a strong and beautiful person and you do not need the destruction it can bring. You are loved too.

Selene

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Oh My God, Selene, you've made me cry, and that's no easy feat! After i read your post it occurred to me why, someone who has never"met" me or would know my face on the street thinks enough about the "real" me to defend me. That is something i have never had or frankly something that occurred to me to want. I'M the one who protects and defends, never thought it would feel so good to be the one worried over and protected. thank you for giving me this amazing gift, it almost made my family not protecting me worth it, because I believe there truly is goodness in our world and it comes in the form of people like you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Justmom, i truly am trying to understand, but it is very hard. One thing keeps gnawing away at me, let's say you keep your marriage together, (I'm trying your shoe on), I do not think i could ever lay next to, sleep with, kiss touch or make love to this man ever again without seeing my little girl. i am sorry for your loss, i just don't understand.BLESSINGS

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