Sun | Nov 27, 2022

Molested by my father

Published:Tuesday | May 8, 2012 | 12:00 AM

When I was 15 years old my father sexually molested me. I reported it to my mother but she did not believe me. He also had sexual relations with my younger sister when our mother was not around. I therefore grew to hate my father and resented my mother. I still do not get on with my father but my mother and I are OK. She now believes me and has left my father because of his deviant behaviour. It seems that my early molestation is affecting my marriage. I find my husband demanding of sex and aggressive in sexual approaches. Often I find sex painful with him but I endure it as a dutiful wife. My husband does not know about my early sexual molestation and at times he is frustrated with me. He however, believes that something is wrong with me sexually and is encouraging me to go and seek counselling and has offered to go with me. However, I think time will heal me and it is not necessary to seek professional help. What do you think?

You have had a most awful experience in your young age at the hand of someone who should have been protecting you. He has committed carnal abuse and incest. He has betrayed your trust. It seems that you could be suffering from deep, emotional and psychological scars. It could be that your gruesome sexual experience is affecting how you perceive your husband and your reaction to his demands and advances.

Talking heals old wounds

It is good that your husband is re-assuring and willing to follow you to a counsellor. It is indicative that he can be trusted with your sexual secret and it would be a good idea to share it with him and open up to him your true and deep feelings. Perhaps it would make your husband even more understanding and appreciative of you. In any case, if both of you attend counselling sessions it would be revealed that you were sexually molested by your father.

You did not mention how your sister is dealing with her tragic early sexual experience. Perhaps she has healed and can help you or perhaps you need to encourage her to seek help also.

It is sad that your mother did not believe you and your sister and she was not more alert to the sexual activities of your father. It is good that she now believes you and has severed the relationship with your father on account of his action.

It is understandable and natural that you hate your father because of how he robbed you of your innocence and ability to grow normally and engage in a healthy relationship with a father. However, you should try and not allow your hatred to affect you and how you relate sexually to your husband. You need to decide whether you want to press charges against your father at this stage of your life. He might be in breach of the Child Protection Act. You can consult the relevant authorities as to the way forward.

I agree with your husband that you should seek counselling. It is clear that you need therapy. It is a common belief that time heals things, but often it is not so. Time might help one to forget the details but not necessarily to help one to deal with the trauma and the pain. It is therapy that will help you endure the pain and eventually overcome the pain. All the best and you can overcome this ordeal.