As a young child, we instinctively trust all of the adults that come into our path starting with our parents. Your parents are fundamental in the development of comfort, security and trust. When that foundation cracks, your entire life can become shattered and twisted from the point of break down of the hierarchy of needs. My father’s brother touched me inappropriately when I was 10 years old. It was Christmas time and we were living in MD. My mother loaded the car with gifts and we went to my father’s brother’s house. He had 4 kids and 2 were girls that I could play with. Only problem was that had a really bad roach infestation problem. Roaches were everywhere. Inside the refrigerator, inside the clock, behind the wallpaper, just everywhere. My uncle refused the Christmas gifts because he accused my mother of trying to make him look bad because he had lost his job. My mother was just extending kindness the best way she knew how…with her purse. Buying gifts. After that whole argument ended, my uncle’s kids were allowed to keep the gifts and my brother and me agreed to spend the night. That night, my cousin told me to keep my head covered and make sure my ears were covered too. She said that if the roaches get in my ears, they could drive me crazy. So I did as I was told. A fold away bed was put out for me in the living room where the Christmas tree was. The Christmas tree reminded me of Charlie Brown’s tree. A shabby tree with a few bulbs. Nothing that would cause me to fantasize about Santa Claus bringing me gifts. It looked like Santa forgot this house altogether. Anyway, I laying in the fold out bed and I am staring at the lights and I hear footsteps coming down the stairs. and I close my eyes and pretend I was asleep. I hear the steps come closer to me and I could feel the heat of someone looking at me to see if I was asleep. I guess he thought I was asleep and I felt the covers pull back off me. Then, his hand went down my pajama pants and made its way to my vagina. He was feeling around and when he tried to insert a finger into my vagina, I moved and made a sound. He ran back up the stairs and I stayed awake the entire night, wondering was this how all families were. I was being improperly touched at home and it seemed that everywhere I went, something inappropriate was happening to me. Why? When I got back home and it was time for bed, Mommy called me to her bedroom. Her and Daddy was in the bed and she asked me if anything happened while I was at my uncle’s house. I told them everything that happened and my father’s reaction was, “I wasn’t there, I didn’t see it.” I went to my room and cried in bed. I cried myself to sleep because I always loved and trusted my father. From that day forward I didn’t trust my father anymore and I never shared anything else that happened to me. I kept everything to myself until I couldn’t hold it in anymore. The nervous breakdowns and countless therapy sessions and pharmacological services proved futile. The courts have failed me too but that will be in a future blog. The best medicine for me is writing these things out. Getting them out of me, once and for all. All the nastiness was not my fault. I just met with a lot of twisted and delusional people and it messed me up for a long time. My uncle died of a heart attack some years later but not before raping his own mother after a drinking binge. I sent him a card before he died and I told him everything I remembered and then I told him that I forgive him. I don’t know if he ever got to read it but, I’ve been trying to restore my soul every since.
written by Joan Farley