Molly (name changed to protect the victim’s identity) was less than seven years old when she was sexually molested several times by her uncle in an apartment shared with her grandad, dad and most of his siblings.
“My earliest memories of being sexually molested was between when I was about five to seven years old. I remember this because It was a time before I moved to live with my mom, and that happened when before I was seven years old,” says Molly.
According to Molly, she cannot remember exactly how many times the incidence occurred but vividly remembers two separate occasions.
“The first memory I have was me being in a room alone. He had recently come home from school (university) and told me stories about his friends. At some point, he put his hands into my panties… then he proceeded to show me his penis, told me not to be scared and to touch it. After that, he asked me to lick it, then to suck on it,” she says.
Molly held on to this secret for many years until another family member directly asked her about it.
“After I graduated from university, I moved to a different city, but was in constant communication with my aunt. She raised me for most of my life. She is like my mom. I remember being in a cab on my way back from work when she called me who sexually molested me. I was pretty shocked. She didn’t ask me if I was molested, she asked like she already knew and just wanted to confirm” says Molly. Molly told her aunt she would give her a call as soon as she got home, which she did.
“She recently went to a seminar that provided information on signs of sexually molested children. She said my name popped up in her mind every time he mentioned a sign” says Molly.
After the conversation, her aunt arranged for her to discuss with a host from the seminar. According to Molly, he helped “me understand that some of the problems I dealt with were rooted in the sexual abuse I endured as a child”. Some of the challenges included “not being able to sleep at night, being defensive all the time, always feeling less than, not being able to trust people, having an unhealthy sexual life. There were just so many things I didn’t know were connected to that experience,” said Molly.
When asked why she never told anyone as a child, Molly responded that as an adult, she asked herself that question every day for a long time until a therapist helped her understand a possible reason why.
“A couple of years ago, I saw a therapist who told me that by sharing stories about his friends e and telling me I was his favourite niece, he was [grooming] me,” says Molly. She also adds that her uncle would tell her the act was their “little secret” and that no one would believe her if she ever told them.
When asked why she wanted to share her story, Molly said that she had read so many stories about children going through the same thing over the years. “When you hear bad stories, you always tend to think they are done by strangers, but it could be someone within the household like a trusted friend, a brother or sister. “
Molly hopes that sharing her story will help save a child from a similar situation or help someone who might have experienced a similar situation find their voice.