A culture that diminishes sexual violence is indelibly linked to my experience. I still have days when I find myself thinking, at least it was only once. While I am thankful I was only raped one time, the truth is it’s never only once. I’ve been haunted by the memories of that moment my entire life. The effects of abuse ripple out to impact relationships, decisions, habits, and my sense of self every single day.
I was a victim of childhood sexual abuse before the age of four. When I was 12, I discovered porn. What started as teenage curiosity turned to fascination, and eventually a powerful addiction to pornography. For nearly ten years of my addiction, I was a youth pastor in the Bible Belt.
I lived in constant fear of my perfect image being shattered.
But one conversation with my little boy changed everything…
Anyone who says church hurts are no big deal has no idea what they’re talking about. I was deeply wounded by the church and threw stones at her for a decade.
These days, I am blessed to belong to a church I love. But learning to engage the church again has been a long journey. Here’s why I stopped hating the church…
*Trigger Warning: This story contains graphic details of child molestation.* To be a christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God forgave the inexcusable in you. -C.S. Lewis I was twelve when my dad left my mom. To be honest, I really don’t remember what life was like before the divorce. I don’t remember the […]
When abuse is your first memory, it colors who you are.
I was molested when I was a preschooler, and it has rippled through my life ever since. The “predator” was a 17-year-old kid who lived across the street. And knew my family well.
Abuse happens. It is scary and horrific and life changing, and we victims are all terrified it will happen to our children the way it happened to us.
But we have to be honest about where abuse happens. It is so very very rarely a stranger in a public restroom.