wwyd if this was your situation?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2003
wwyd if this was your situation?
Wed, 05-14-2003 - 10:53pm
for years now I have debated whether or not to tell the mother of the boy (well, he isn't any longer but he was a minor - 16 - at the time) who molested you?

I worry so much, wondering if he abused his younger sister or any of the other children his mother babysat (she ran a licensed daycare, and often had children overnight so their parents could work the night shift or go to school at night or sleep if they had to) this is why I was even there...my mother was working and going to school and every now and again we'd stay overnight.

When I was 17, we'd moved back into the area, and my mother went on a trip overseas. She arranged for me to stay at this lady's house again for the week because she didn't think I could be trusted on my own (I had a boyfriend she didn't like).

I forced myself to stay in the same room as I'd been abused in (not my choice, it was the room I was given)..I didn't say anything then...I figured if I couldn't speak up then I deserved to have to stay there...and I also thought MAYBE if I stayed there and was safe, that part of me would heal. I think it DID help a little bit, but it was still an extremely difficult time for me to have to stay there again.

It's been some 20 years now, but I still wonder if I shouldn't tell this lady because he may have abused others. Maybe she knows he's abused others...or maybe it would break her heart more than it's already been (the boy had been a delinquent then and still in/out of jail as an adult)...and I don't want to hurt her...I don't blame her for her son's actions, I've always understood that it was his decision and his sickness/evilness.

At this point I know I probably couldn't even bring charges...I don't think that would ever make a difference even if I could. I've known since it happened that ultimately he'd answer to God and go to hell for his sins...so I've never had a desire for revenge, only to heal myself...

I DID finally tell my mother about a year ago and got basically the response I'd expected, she doesn't believe me and rather brushed it off "well I'm sorry that happened to you. you should deal with it and get some counseling" ...

anyway I'm just wondering if anyone thinks I should still tell this lady next time I'm in town (I wouldn't do it over the phone or anything, it's something to do in person if I do)?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-2003
Thu, 05-15-2003 - 11:18am
I don't know what I would do. I was also violated at a babysitter's by her oldest son while my parents went on a date. I haven't even had the courage to tell my mom. I started remembering about five years ago. A part of me wants to tell her so that she'll understand me better, but I seriously don't know how much good it would do because although she does have a caring side, she also has this side that could react like, "Why are you telling me this? You're doing this just to hurt me." It's protection for my feelings NOT to tell her, and protection for her not to know. Sometimes I feel like I should tell her, though.

If you do decide to tell her, maybe you could approach it from the angle of letting her know that you are also concerned that he may have done this to other family members, and that they may be hurting.

Something you said in your post really struck me; the part where you said that you figured if you couldn't speak up about the abuse you "deserved" to stay in the room you were abused in. I know that that was some time ago, but I do hope that you realize that you don't "deserve" any of this. We are so good at punishing ourselves and accepting blame for what happened; in a crazy sort of way it's easier to say we must have brought it on ourselves. It makes the perpetrator seem not as awful.

Whatever you decide to do with this, I think it's important to examine your reasons. If you feel that it will help you to get it off your chest and help you with your healing, I certainly don't think that would be a bad thing. That way you're not "keeping the secret" any longer.

I wish you well with this decision.




co-cl, Sexual Abuse Healing Board

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-03-2003
Fri, 05-16-2003 - 1:21am
I think you should ask yourself if telling this lady will benefit you. At some point in time (future or past) you may become angry with her for being your baby sitter. Ultimately, she was entrusted with your safety and she didn't keep you safe. For this, you may want to hold her accountable. (Maybe not, if you have reconciled this.) It isn't a bad thing to be upset with the adult that should have kept you safe. You have a right to want her to answer to you for this.

From what you have said, I believe that he would have molested others as well. So then you need to ask yourself if you really want to know for sure. His actions are not your responsibility. Nothing will make you responsible for anything that happened to you. Nothing was your fault.

If she tells you that she knew and did nothing... How will you feel?

If she tells you she did not know and is upset that this happened to you... How will you feel?

If she tells you that she does not believe you and gets upset... How will you feel?

If you feel like you can handle any of the answers to these questions, then ask yourself the following;

If she died tomorrow, and you never had the chance to ask her about this, will you feel sorry that you did not get the chance to confront her over this?

I do not know what the answer is for you. But asking these questions of yourself may help you be prepared for anything. Above all remember this is about you. If you need this for healing, go for it. But, prepare yourself for all of her possible responses and then hope for the best.