I think I was sexually abused…

“I think I was sexually abused”
A survivor of childhood and adolescent sexual abuse wrote this for you

I want you to know that there is hope. The healing process really hurts, and takes a long time, but it is real and good. For me it started with a counselor showing me that what happened had hurt me deeply. The counselor encouraged me to feel my pain, and my anger at myself and my abuser and my family and God. I was allowed to be real. I didn’t have to fix myself just to look inside and see all the pain and horror, and find words for it. My counselor was angry and sad that I had experienced all that pain. My family got mad when I tried to talk to them about it, and I felt as if I wasn’t important to them. It hurt me a lot. Some of my friends were Christians, and they told me that God hates abuse, and is angry that I was abused. They said He loves me and wants me to express my anger to Him and my confusion and grief.

I got so depressed during the process of facing my pain that I wanted to die, and I stopped eating and couldn’t sleep. I felt alone and terrified and helpless. I told God everything, and I let myself fall and fall, and cry and cry and He was there to comfort me. I didn’t feel better, I just felt kind of safe amidst all the horror. There’s still a long way to go. I talk to my counselor every week, and to friends I trust, and to God and little by little, I’m healing.

I want you to heal. You matter and you are valuable. You might not believe me, but it is true. Please get help. You can’t make it on your own. Find someone you can trust, who is wise. Find a counselor or youth pastor you feel safe with, who doesn’t judge you. It can be difficult to find the right person to talk to, but don’t give up. You’re worth it.